Updated for Mists of Pandaria 5.2
See our Mists of Pandaria Mage preview page for all of the the new talents as well as skills, glyphs. etc.
Table of Contents
- Patch Notes
- Frost PvP Build
- Frostie Tips
- How to Burst
- Leveling Faster
Of the three mage specs, Frost possess the greatest survivability along with greater control due to its numerous roots that allow it to escape melee and to put out pressure and CC when it needs to. Defensively frost has Cold Snap which will allow you to get another Water Elemental up or use Ice Block again, both immensely important tools for your survivability and damage.
The build(s) and info on this page apply mainly to level 90 PvP. If you’re not yet 90 then use what you can. If you want to get to 90 ASAP then check out this in-game leveling guide.
Some 5.2 Notes
- Blazing Speed replaces Scorch as a level 15 talent.
- Scorch is now Fire only.
- Flameglow replaces Blazing speed as a level 30 talent
- Ring of Frost cast with Presence of Mind takes 2 seconds to “arm,” negating some of POM’s usefulness.
- Frostbolt does more damage – It’s now worthwhile to cast FB into freezes.
- Invocation now has no cooldown and lasts one minute.
- Greater Invisibility‘s CD reduced from 150 sec to 90.
- Deep Freeze stun last 5 seconds. Glyphing it drops it to 4, but takes it off the Global Cooldown, which means you can freeze and then instantly ice lance.
- Elemental freeze no longer does damage, which will protect CC.
- IceWard does not share DR with Frost Nova. Makes chaining freezes an interesting possibility. Should make it harder for melee to keep up.
|Frost Spec Level|
|Frostbolt - Damages and slows, target takes more dmg from frostbolt, icelance, and pet’s waterbnolt||7|
|Summon Water Elemental||10|
|Fingers of Frost - Spells can trigger F of F which treats targets as frozen (for ice lance and deep freeze, and increases ice lance damage.||24|
|Icy Veins - accelerates spell-casting, reduces pushback. 3 min CD.||36|
|Frozen Orb - Orb attacks targets doing damage and slowing them briefly.||62|
|Brain Freeze - certan spells can cause Frostfire bolt to be free and instant.||77|
|Mastery: Frostburn - more damage Vs. frozen||80|
Unlike previous versions of WoW the talents are not specific to any particular spec. Any Mage can pick any one talent from any row, for six talents at level 90. Obviously certain talents have a little more PvP utility than others.
- Presence of Mind – Allows an insta-cast of any one spell every 1.5 min except Ring of Frost, which greatly knocks down POM’s utility (with 5.2 R of F has a 2 second “arming” time.) Still, not a bad talent.
- Blazing Speed can be used as a short burst of speed every 25 seconds (saving a blink,) an escape from snares (saving a blink,) and a gap closer.
- Ice Floes – Not so hot when compared to the others.
- Temporal Shield – Requires accurate anticipation of damage.
- Flameglow is the new 5.2 talent. It’s great for soaking up a chunk of continuous smaller damage, not so hot against burst (though it’ll help some.)
- Ice Barrier just blocks a chunk of damage, such as lots of little stuff or a big chunk of a big hit.
- Ring of Frost – the old, the tested, the immensely useful in all kinds of places. Has a cast time and even with Presence of Mind has a 2 second “arming time.” Especially useful in the BGs. Works even better when you team has abilities like Gorefiend’s Grasp, which will pull all enemies into your ROF, just before your Frost Bomb Shatter goes off…
- Ice Ward – Melee gets in your face and gets frozen, allowing you to get away and/or set up for the kill. With 5.2 this does not share DR with your other freezes. Best choice for kiting melee, duels, etc.
- Frostjaw – Single target ranged freeze and silence. Has it’s uses, especially when followed up with a shatter.
Three good choice. Which one depends on your game.
- Greater Invisbility – Nice for wiping away effects and escaping (repositioning.) Broken/blocked by various effects, such as Faerie Fire or too many DOTs. Can also be used to position yourself to set up for a Ring of Frost or whatever.
- Cauterize – Nice if you anticipate occasional lethal damage. Most useful if you have a healer with you, though Ice Block will stop the DOT and Temporal Shield will heal it.
- Cold Snap – Nice heal and resets important cooldowns. Usable while stunned, etc.
- Nether Tempest – Nice Vs single targets.
- Living Bomb – Nice burn, explodes for decent damage.
- Frost Bomb – Delivers all damage when it explodes. If your target just happens to be frozen when it goes off it can hit pretty hard, esp. with your Mastery increasing dmg Vs frozen targets. The only downside is that it has a cast time.
- Invocation – Evocate and get more damage for a minute. Nice when you have the time to do that. If glyphed you gain 10% of your health when the Invocation ends.
- Rune of Power – Nice except for the fact that you have to stand still, which in not what you want to be doing in PvP. Plus mana just isn’t really an issue for Mages.
- Incanter’s Ward. It’s PvP, you will take lots of damage. Might as well get a really nice damage boost out of the deal.
Videos, forums, ask questions
- Glyph of Deep Freeze: Take DF off the GCD, allowing for immediate follow up with Ice Lance or whatever.
- Glyph of Polymorph: Removes DOTs from the target.
- Glyph of Armors: More defense from your armors.
- Glyph of Icy Veins: More damage from your various bolts.
- Glyph of Evocation: Regain health when you Evo. Mana is not an issue as of the 5.0.4 patch, but health might be. Getting the space to use it might be an issue, though.
- Glyph of Spellsteal – adds a small heal when you steal a spell.
- Glyph of Momentum: Lets you strafe using Blink.
- Pick any two.
Stats and Gearing for Mists of Pandaria
- Best: 6% Hit > PvP Power & PvP Resilience > Int
- Haste > Mastery > Crit (Shatter gives Crit a soft cap of 25%)
- After 12.5% Haste then Mastery becomes better.
- If you take Frost Bomb then Mastery > Haste.
- Useless: excess Hit (anything over 6% is useless.)
More about Stats
- Hit: Can’t kill what you can’t hit. Expertise and some racials add to your Spell Hit. Basically, getting 6% hit will be easy.
- Resilience: Base resilience, naked, is 40%. Resilience on your gear adds to that. Res is a straight up damage reduction for damage thrown at you by other players. Given the massive burst in 5.2 PvP you should seriously consider making Resilience your #1 stat after Hit.
- PvP power replaces Spell Penetration and is a straight up damage add. It does not interact directly with Resilience. Point for Point it’s close to, and maybe better than, Int in value. Also note that the gems have twice the value of Int gems. More on PvP power and Resilience.
- Int improves Spell Power and Crit, it does not add to mana pool.
- If you’re comfortable with your ability to avoid damage then gearing for Int or PvP Power over Resilience is a fine option.
- Haste provides for faster casting and shaves precious fractions off of cast times. At 12.5% Haste you also get an extra tick on your Nether Tempest DOT.
- If you’re specced into Frost Bomb then Mastery should take priority over Haste.
- Mastery increases all damage against frozen targets and increase your Elemental’s damage. This will nicely increase youir burst damage.
- Excess Hit is useless to you (unless you’re raiding in your PvP gear,) but your elemental gets 50% of yours, so excess Hit isn’t a total waste.
- Expertise adds to your spell hit rating, as does the expertise from some racials. If you have Hit on a piece of gear and you need a bit more to hit the 6% cap then you can reforge the other stat to Expertise.
Reforge to your strongest stats first.
- Once you have your 6% Hit then reforge everything into Haste, and then Mastery.
Frost Mage Gems
You should try to match socket bonuses. Gems with secondary stats (eg; Haste) have twice the value of primary stat gems (eg: Int) and socket bonuses are nice enough to make matching them worthwhile.
Your Mage bonus adds to any Int gem bonuses, making them worth 5% more Int. That bonus does not add to other stats.
Offense (Slot the appropriate epic gems if they’re available:)
- Red: Mysterious Imperial Amethyst
- Yellow: Vivid Wild Jade
- Blue: Stormy River’s Heart
- Prismatic (belt buckle, blacksmithing socket:) Stormy River’s Heart
- Red: Willful Vermilion Onyx
- Yellow: Mystic Sun’s Radiance
- Blue: Vivid Wild Jade
- Prismatic (belt buckle, blacksmithing socket:) Mystic Sun’s Radiance
|Useful Gems for Frost Mages|
|Meta||Burning Primal Diamond: +216 Int & 3% Increased Crit Effect
Tyrannical Primal Diamond: +665 PVP Power and +775 Resilience, requires 27k earned conquest points and iLevel 476, cost 1k conquest points.
|Red||Brilliant Serpent’s Eye: 320 Int, self-only Jewelcrafting gem
Brilliant Primordial Ruby: 160 Int
|Yellow||Mystic Sun’s Radiance: 320 Resilience
Quick Sun’s Radiance: +320 Haste
|Blue||Stormy River’s Heart: +320 PvP power
Rigid River’s Heart: +320 Hit
|Orange||Tenuous Sardonyx: +200 Expertise and +200 PvP Resilience
Willful Sardonyx: +100 Intellect and +200 PvP Resilience
Willful Vermilion Onyx: +80 Int & +160 Resilience
Reckless Vermilion Onyx: 80 Int, 160 Haste
Tenuous Vermilion Onyx: 160 Expertise, 160 Resilience
|Green||Balanced Adventurine: +200 Hit and +200 PvP Resilience
Vivid Adventurine: +200 PvP Power and +200 PvP Resilience
Vivid Wild Jade: +160 Res, +160 PvP Power
|Purple||Mysterious Imperial Amethyst: +80 Int, +160 PvP Power
Veiled Imperial Amethyst: 80 Int and 160 Hit
|Prismatic||Slot with what you need|
|Cogwheel||Requires an engie helm, such as this.
Quick Tinker’s Gear: 600 Haste
Smooth Tinker’s Gear: 600 Crit
Fractured Tinker’s Gear: 600 Mastery
Frost Mage Enchantments
Short on gold? If you want to buy the best enchants and gems, 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.
Helm enchants are gone in Mists of Pandaria, shoulder enchants are provided by the Inscription profession.
There are no general PvP Power enchants, the chest enchant is the only one that offers resilience. There is a weapon enchant, requiring conquest points, that offers both PvP power and Resilience.
|Weapon||Enchant Weapon – Jade Spirit: Sometimes increases Int by 1650, might increase Spirit by 750 if mana is low.
Enchant Weapon – Glorious Tyranny: 400 PvP Power, 200 Resilience, 50% Disarm reduction, cost is 1,000 Conquest points.
Living Steel Weapon Chain: 50% Disarm Reduction, 200 Expertise (will add to Spell Hit)
Off Hand: Enchant Off-Hand – Major Intellect: +165 Int
|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 – attacks can give 2k Int for 15 sec, requires tailoring
|Chest||Enchant Chest – Super Resilience: +200 Resilience
|Bracers||Enchant Bracer – Super Intellect: +180 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 – Pandaren’s Step: +140 Mastery, slight run speed increase.
Enchant Boots – Greater Haste: +170 Haste
|Rings||Enchant Ring – Greater Intellect: +160 Int, Requires Enchanting 550|
Professions for the Frost Mage
All of the professions provide some benefit for Mages, though clearly some are better than others. Even the gathering professions have some value, though you might be better served by building a larger gold stash through other means.
If you’re just talking about pure efficiency then Engineering, for the Synapse Springs and other gadgets, and Blacksmithing, for the extra gem slots, might be the best professions to take.
Alchemy proves better effect and duration from your own potions (about 30% for stats and an extra hour in duration for elixirs and flasks) and has a lot of useful potions.
Herbalism comes with a big Haste cooldown and you will also be able to gather some very nice Spirits.
- Engineering has lots of interesting toys, some of which have situational use, and Synapse Springs, which increases Int by 1,940r 10 seconds. If you take this use a macro to activate it, along with other short term buffs, before you cast your favorite nuke.
- Blacksmithing gives two extra gems slots for the nicest gems. Since gems with secondary stats have twice the vale of gems with primary stats, eg PvP power gem for 320 points Vs Int gem for 160) this may be the best profession to take.
- Tailoring – Lightweave Embroidery sometimes increases Int by 2,000 for 15 seconds. The only problem is that you can’t activate it on call, so it has less PvP value than PvE value. You will also be able to make your own starter gear for PvP, perhaps saving some gold over Auction House prices.
- Leatherworking provides a 500 Int wrist enchant.
- Jewelcrafting allows creating two 320 Int, self-only, gems. You can also create many other self-only gems, of course, if you’d rather use those.
- Enchanting will allow you to enchant both rings, for a total +320 Int total.
- Inscription has a nice shoulder enchant which is 520 Int and 100 Crit.
- Alchemy has a variety of useful potions and the Mixology bonus is worth 320 Int and extra duration.
- Skinning provides 480 crit rating, which is far below the other profs in value. If you have to take skinning do it for the cash flow then work it hard and do a lot of it.
- Herbalism provides a small self heal and a pretty sweet 2880 Haste rating for 20 seconds, plus you can find spirits. Make gold, get Haste and Heals, what’s not to like?
- Mining provides 480 Stam and has little benefit for Mages.
Races for the PvP Frost Mage
Not that race is a replacement for skill, but some have certain advantages. Orc for the burst or Human for the trinket ability might be “the best.” Play what you like.
- Melee range stun, better food buffs, longer lasting rest XP, less falling damage.
- Can be either Horde or Alliance.
- Escape ability allows use of two DPS trinkets.
- Faster rep grinding with Diplomacy
- Expertise with swords adds to your Spell Hit if you equip a sword.
- Decent escape,
- slightly bigger mana pool,
- Expertise with Swords adds to your Spell Hit if you use a Sword.
- small size helps (really.)
- Night Elves:
- A bit harder to hit.
- Shadowmeld has possible ambush potential and can break incoming spells if you time it just right.
- Stoneform washes away bleeds and take less damage.
- Ranged weapon expertise is useless.
- +1 Hit (partially inherited by your elemental) and
- a small heal, both are nice and the Hit makes reforging a bit easier. (6% needed for PvP.)
- +1% crit is Ok,
- Sprint-like ability is always useful.
- Blood Fury for increased burst (put it in a macro,)
- stun resistance helps a bit,
- pet damage is nice for your elemental.
- Remove Fear, Sleep, and Charm.
- Eat defeated players.
- Drain Life (passive) and be healed for the amount drained.
- Berserk increases casting speed (stick it in a macro,) and
- trolls are less affected by roots and slows.
- Ranged weapon expertise is useless.
- 1% Haste is nice,
- Rocket Jump is a nice escape.
- Blood Elves:
- Arcane Torrent restores some mana and silences casters who are too close.
- Tauren don’t believe in Magery.
Frost PvP Tips
Counterspell - Consider using this as a silence with a situational interrupt. Instead of nippng his spell as he casts it, use it to silence him in important situations or to break his chain of spells. For example, Silencing a priest/paladin to break a CC chain.
Evocation - When glyphed this heals for 60% of your health. The first tick is instant, so even if you don’t have time to do the whole thing you can get a bit of health back. Maybe enough to count. Your level 90 talent pick will change how this works.
Invisibility/Greater Invisbility - cast this before the gates open or, if in BGs, when you can break line of sight. It’s very important in the current game to get the first shatter, as it can drop someone to 30-40% with it’s ridiculous burst damage. Remember to use the on-use effect Trinket before your first shatter combo.
Mirror Image - Say if you’re going for an enemy healer and you use Ring of Frost + Mirror Images, it’s going to be very hard for him to escape all the slows/snares and whatnot, I also like the fact that Mirror Images + RoF equals a mess on the enemy screen and it can confuse the enemy, even the advanced players.
The extra slow from the Mirror Images can also act as dispel protection for Ring of Frost.
This section is from Skill-Capped, with permission. This section is geared towards people who have recently hit 90 for the first time, or have an under-geared alt that needs to be primed for beginning the PvP gear grind.
Upon achieving level 90, we do NOT advise you to just jump into an Arena, or start grinding Battleground’s, or do any sort of PvP for that matter fresh off of leveling in your leveling items. Chances are many of the enemies in a Battleground will significantly out-gear your fresh level 90, which means they will have a significant advantage over you in a PvP setting. Something that we promise will save you a lot of grief, speed up your grind, and make your PvP experience that much more enjoyable would be to obtain the crafted PvP gear right away.
Here is a list of all of the items you should immediately obtain before you start PvP’ing in Mists of Pandaria:
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Silk Handguards – Reforge Crit to Haste
- Gloves are a controversial first pick-up, but a lot of mages argue that the global cooldown reduction for Blink is well worth the lower stat levels when compared to other items. You can decide whether you prefer stats over the cooldown reduction.
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Silk Trousers – Reforge Mastery to Hit
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Silk Robe- Reforge Crit to Hit
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Silk Cowl – Reforge Crit to Hit
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Cord of Accuracy
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Silk Amice – Reforge Mastery to Hit
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Treads of Alacrity – Reforge Crit to Hit
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Drape of Prowess – Reforge Mastery to Hit
- Crafted Dreadful Gladiator’s Cuffs of Accuracy – Reforge Crit to Haste
Tip: It is normally much cheaper to get the materials for these items yourself and have someone craft them for you, rather than buying them off of the Auction House. Even if you just buy the materials off the Auction House and spam trade, it’s normally cheaper. Always check first for good deals on the Auction House, though!
Honor Gear – work for this if you do not already have the Season 12 honor gear already upgraded.
Best in Season 13:
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Spellblade – Reforge Crit to Hit
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Endgame – Reforge Crit to Hit
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Silk Trousers
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Silk Robe – Reforge Crit to Hit
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Silk Cowl – Reforge Crit to Haste
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Silk Amice
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Cord of Cruelty – Reforge Crit to Hit
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Treads of Alacrity – Reforge Crit to Mastery
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Silk Handguards – Reforge Crit to Mastery
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Band of Accuracy – Reforge Haste to Mastery
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Band of Cruelty – Reforge Crit to Haste
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Cuffs of Prowess
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Drape of Prowess
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Pendant of Alacrity
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Badge of Dominance
- Tyrannical Gladiator’s Medallion of Tenacity
The above was from Skill-Capped.
In Arenas your targeting macros are crucial, as are your focus macros. You will no longer have to click through an army of pets to get your target(s.)
Heal your water elemental:
- /cast [target=Water Elemental] Frostbolt
This one removes the curse from your mouseover target, otherwise it removes it from you.
- /cast [target=mouseover,help,exists] [target=target,exists] [target=player] Remove Curse
Remove Curse from your team mates, one for each team member, including yourself.
- /cast [target='your partner's name'] Remove Curse
Cancels your current cast and casts Counterspell on your focus target if SHIFT is held, otherwise on your regular target.
- #showtooltip Counterspell
- /cast [mod:shift, target=focus] Counterspell; Counterspell
Mash your Ice Block key without worrying about instantly canceling your IB once it pops.
- #showtooltip Ice block
- /cast !Ice block
Drop Ice Block – this will cancel Ice Block so that you can use another ability
- /cancelaura Ice Block
- rest of the macro
Cancel Alter Time – Why? You find yourself in a better position a few seconds into A.T. than you were when you entered it. For example, the other guy died and/or you were healed.
- /cancelaura Alter Time
Stop casting – nice for interrupts or any other “right now” casting. Stops the other spell and allows casting of the new one. Pefect for interrupts.
- rest of the macro (eg: /cast Counterspell)
Vs Fire Mage – Steal his Pyroblast! proc, cancel it, and he can’t steal it back!
- /cast Spellsteal
- /cancelaura Pyroblast!
How to Burst as a Frost Mage
Shows a routine to put down a lot of damage real fast.
Tired of the grind? Want to level up yet another alt quickly? Brand new to the World of Warcraft or decked head to toe in heirloom gear and want to be “up there?”Get leveled the easy way.
With thousands of quests and a few bazillion mobs to mash the trip to the level cap can take a while. A long while. Do what the fastest levelers do and grab Dugi’s Guide, an in-game leveling guide that almost “automates” the whole leveling path for your Frost mage.You still have to play the game, of course, but the “where to go and what to do” part is nicely taken care of.
You’ll follow the most effective leveling path and skip the junk quests. You probably won’t ever have to open you quest log, much less consult some website for quest info.
Dugi’s is always updated for the latest patches and expansions and is never out of date. Grab your copy here and cruise to max level quickly and easily.End notes
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