Updated for Mists of Pandaria gems and enchants. Also see our post on the Mists of Pandaria Magefor info on all the changes.
Arcane is the glass cannon spec of mages, capable of putting out extreme amounts of damage in a very short period of time, but also the most susceptible to being killed in a swift burst due to a lack of survivability tools or escape mechanisms.
Arcane Mages often draw swift attention due to their high damage output and have very few ways of dealing with offensive pressure while simultaneously attempting to stack Arcane Blast so as to get out their damage.
Arcane’s greatest strength is in a battleground when it’s allowed to cast uninterrupted. Stay in groups and pick your fights. Battlegrounds will be “Hard Mode” for you, for when you’re bored with Frost. In the Arenas you will need to be very good, very lucky, or have a high tolerance for pain.
In Mists of Pandaria the Arcane Mage has more survivability and can pump out more damage than before. This will certainly make the spec a lot more interesting to play.
|Other Mage Pages|
Arcane Mage PvP Build
Stats and Gear
- Primary stats: Int and Resilience
- Secondary stats: 6% Hit > 6% Expertise > Haste
- Weaker stats: Mastery > Critical > excess Hit (over 6%)
Ranged attacks can now be dodged, hence the need for expertise. You will likely need to get it through reforging or gemming.
- Make sure you have the 6% Hit and Expertise
- Reforge everything else into Haste.
Arcane Mage Gems
Note that Mists of Pandaria (MoP) gems have much higher values than earlier gems and that the values of secondary stats (eg: Haste) are twice that of primary stats (Int.) You should match socket bonuses where possible.
Visit our gold guide for tips on how you can afford to gem up if gold is a bit short.
|Arcane Gem Priorities|
|Meta||Burning Primal Diamond: +216 Int & 3% Increased Crit Effect|
|Red||Brilliant Serpent’s Eye: 320 Int, self-only Jewelcrafting gem
Brilliant Primordial Ruby: 160 Int
|Yellow||Mystic Sun’s Radiance: 320 Resilience|
|Blue||Stormy River’s Heart: +320 PvP power|
|Orange||Reckless Vermilion Onyx: 80 Int, 160 Haste
Tenuous Vermilion Onyx: 160 Expertise, 160 Resilience
|Prismatic||Brilliant Primordial Ruby: 160 Int|
|Cogwheel||Quick Tinker’s Gear: 600 Haste - requires an engie helm, such as this.|
There are no head enchants, all shoulder enchants come from the Inscription profession.
Short on gold? If you want to buy the best enchants, fund all of your alts, donate to the guild, etc., but don’t have the cash, then see what the Tycoon Addon can do about about fixing your poverty.
|Arcane Mage Enchantments|
|Weapon||Enchant Weapon – Jade Spirit: Sometimes increases Int by 1650
Enchant Weapon – Windsong: Chance for 1,500 Crit, Haste, or Mastery for 12 seconds.
|Shoulders||Secret Crane Wing Inscription: – 520 Int and 100 Crit rating, Requires Inscription 550.
Greater Crane Wing Inscription: +200 Int and 100 Crit
|Cloak||Enchant Cloak – Superior Intellect: +180 Int
Lightweave Embroidery – chance for 2k Int for 15 sec, requires tailoring
|Chest||Enchant Chest – Super Resilience: +200 Resilience|
|Bracers||Enchant Bracer – Super Intellect: +170 Int
Fur Lining increases Int by 500, requires leatherworking.
Socket Bracer – Pop in a gem, requires Blacksmithing 400
|Gloves||Enchant Gloves – Greater Haste: +170-Haste
Socket Gloves – Pop in a gem, requires Blacksmithing 400
|Belt||Livingsteel Belt Buckle: Gem slot for a nice Int gem|
|Leggings||Greater Cerulean Spellthread: +285 Int and +165 Crit|
|Boots||Enchant Boots – Greater Precison: +175 Hit rating
Enchant Boots – Pandaren’s Step: +140 Mastery, slight run speed increase.
|Rings||Enchant Ring – Greater Intellect: +160 Int, Requires Enchanting 550|
Races for the PvP Arcane Mage
Not that race is a replacement for skill, but some races have certain advantages.
- Humans: Escape ability allows use of two DPS trinkets.
- Gnome: Decent escape, bigger mana pool, small size helps (really.)
- Night Elves: A bit harder to hit, Shadowmeld can be very useful.
- Dwarves: Ability washes away bleeds and take less damage, ranged expertise is nice.
- Draenei: +1% Hit is useful, as is a small heal.
- Worgen: +1% crit is just Ok, Sprint-like ability.
- Orcs: Blood Fury for increased burst, stun resistance.
- Undead: Remove Fear, Sleep, and Charm. Drain life (and heal for the amount drained.)
- Trolls: Berserk increases casting speed, less affected by roots & slows. Ranged expertise is nice.
- Goblins: 1% Haste is nice, Rocket Jump (nice escape.)
- Blood Elves: Arcane Torrent restores some mana.
- Tauren don’t believe in Magery.
- Pandaren can join either side, take less falling damage, have a melee stun, and get better food buffs.
Professions for the Arcane PvP Mage
All of the professions come with a “self-only” buff of some kind. If you have the cash and want to do your own gear, then Tailoring and Enchanting or Engineering ore obviously good. If you only want the buffs then Blacksmithing and Engineering are probably the way to go. If you’re too broke to level these skills then go here.
M of P = Mists of Pandaria.
- Blacksmithing – Add gems slots to gloves and bracers, slot the newest gems as they become available. Note that the gems with secondary stats have twice the value of those with primary stats. You can load up 640 PvP power as opposed to 320 Int, so this might be the profession of choice.
- Enchanting – Enchant your rings for 160 Int each.
- Inscription – Best shoulder enchant, 520 Int and 100 Crit.
- Leatherworking – Bracer enchant, 500 Int.
- Alchemy – Better effects from your own potions, such as +320 Int and 2x duration.
- Engineering – Synapse Springs can increase your best stat by 1,940 for 10 seconds.
- Jewelcrafting – Make better gems for your own use, for a total bonus of 320 Int over the other gems.
- Tailoring – Can embroider cloak for more power. Sometimes increase Int by 2,000 for 15 seconds.
- Mining – 120 stam when skill is maxed out., 480 in M of P.
- Herbalism – Small heal and 2880 Haste for 20 seconds.
- Skinning – 80 crit rating, 480 in M of P.
How to: Arcane PvP Videos
The first covers build, glyphs, macros, and some techniques. The other is BG destruction. These videos are for Cataclysm, not M of P, but should have some value. Just skip past the obsolete stuff, such as builds.
The Fastest Mage Leveling
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