The Mage Guide

Frost MageThe Mage

Students gifted with a keen intellect and unwavering discipline may walk the path of the mage.

The arcane magic available to magi is both great and dangerous, and thus is revealed only to the most devoted practitioners.

To avoid interference with their spellcasting, magi wear only cloth armor, but arcane shields and enchantments give them additional protection. To keep enemies at bay, magi can summon bursts of fire to incinerate distant targets and cause entire areas to erupt, setting groups of foes ablaze. Source

This page is intended as an overview of Mages in general. For specific info on specs, rotations, etc. see the links just below.

Mage Guide

Other Mage Guides

 

The Mage

Blood Elf Fire MageMages are the arbiters of Fire, Frost, and the Arcane.  They are wielders of mystical energies beyond all natural comprehension, and sheep-happy, deep freezing, arcane blasting PvP maniacs if my battlegrounds experiences count for anything. But, above all, mages are clean and simple fun.

Mages are cloth wearers, much like Warlocks and Priests, however unlike both these classes we do not possess the adequate survivability to make up for our lack of armor, no healing and no massive health pools.

Instead we rely entirely on ‘not getting hit,’ either by constant movement, blinking, invisibility, crowd control, and massive burst damage. We’re truly Glass Cannons

world of warcraft alliance and horde leveling guide
Click here to get yours now

 

 

Mage Talents

Mists of Pandaria brings with it a totally new talent system. The old talents are all dead, long live the new talents. They’re pretty simple. And mage of any spec can pick any one talent from any of the six rows for six talents at 90.

Warlords of Draenor adds another talent row and has pushed things around a bit. The level 75 and 100 rows both have different talents depending of your spec.

A nice change from before Mists is that you can change your talents, one at a time, on the fly. You’ll need one does of Vanishing Powder, Dust of Disappearance, or Tome of the Clear Mind (depending on your level) to make the switch. Glyphs work the same way. Get the dust (etc.) from your reagents vendor or an Inscription Supplies vendor.

See below the images for descriptions.

All Mages can pick from these talents

(And all talents from the level 90 row.)

Warlords Mage 1

 Arcane Talents

Warlords Mage arcane

Fire Talents

Warlords Mage fire

Frost Talents

Warlords Mage frost

 

Level 15 Evanesce – Fade away and avoid all attacks for 3 seconds. Replaces Ice Block. Blazing Speed: Activating this suppresses movement slowing effects and increases your movement speed for 1 sec. Ice Floes – Allows you to move while casting and channeling the next 2 Mage spells that have a base cast or channel time less than 4 sec. This spell may be cast while a cast time spell is in progress and is not on the global cooldown.
Level 30 Ice Barrier – Instantly shields you, absorbing some damage and lasting for 1 min. While the shield holds, spellcasting will not be delayed by damage.
Level 45 Ring of Frost – Summons a Ring of Frost at the target location. Enemies entering the ring will become frozen, which is nice for your shatter. Casting R of F right before your Ice Nova can be interesting.
Level 60 Greater Invisibility – Instantly makes the caster invisible, reducing all threat, and removing two damage over time effects. While invisible, you are untargetable by enemies. Lasts 20 sec. Invisibility is cancelled if you perform any actions. Damage taken is grealty reduced while invisible and for 3 sec after coming out of invisibility. Cauterize – An attack which would otherwise kill you will instead bring you to 50% of your maximum health, and you will burn for 40% of your maximum health over the next 6 sec.
Level 75
  • Arcane: Nether Tempest – Damage to the target over 12 seconds, plus damage to all enemies within 12 yards.
  • Fire: Living Bomb – fire damage over 12 seconds, exploding at the end.
  • All: Unstable Magic – Your main bolts have a chance to explode on impact, damaging nearby enemies. This is a nice passive way to get extra damage.
All of these have two charges, plus the main target takes 100% increased damage.

  • Arcane: Supernova – a pulse of energy damages all enemies within 8 yards of the target, knocking them upward.
  • Fire: Blastwave – an explosion damages the target and all nearby enemies, slowing their movement.
  • Frost: Ice Nova – Icy winds around the target damage the target and all nearby enemies, briefly freezing them.
Level 90 Mirror Image – this is the same as the original ability. You summon up three copies of you which then start blasting away. It has, however, been nicely buffed over the old version and is a nice burst cooldown. Rune of Power – Replaces Evocation. Places a Rune of Power on the ground for 1 min. While standing in your own Rune of Power, your mana regeneration is increased by 100% and your spell damage is increased by 15%. Only 2 Runes of Power can be placed at one time. Best used when you can stay relatively stationary in a long fight. Incanter’s Flow – You have a ten second cycle, five seconds to a peak of +20% damage, then 5 to drop to +4%, then repeat. The cycle continues until stopped. Best used when you need constant movement or in PvP.
Level 100
  • Arcane gets“Arcane Orb: Your Arcane Orb travels up to 40 yards doing damage to everything it passes through.
  • Fire gets Meteor: Drops a fraggin’ meteor!! Doing damage to an 8 yard area, also burning the ground doing continuous damage to all who remain in the fire.
  • Frost gets Comet Storm: Comets! 7 icy comets bombard the target area, each damaging all enemies withing 4 yards of the impact point.

 

 

 

These abilities are shared by all mages.

These abilities are shared by all mages.

For Warlords some of the older talents and glyphs have been rolled into these abilities. Other Mage abilities, glyphs, and talents are dead. Also note that the levels at which some abilities are obtained has been changed.

1 Frostfire Bolt 52 Teleport: Stonard
3 Frost Nova 56 Invisibility
5 58 Arcane Brilliance
7 Blink 60 Polymorph Turtle
8 Counterspell 60 Polymorph Black Cat
14 Polymorph 60 Polymorph Rabbit
15 Ice Block 60 Polymorph Turkey
17 Teleport: Darnassus 60 Polymorph Pig
17 Teleport: Exodar 60 Polymorph Polar Bear Cub
17 Teleport: Ironforge 60 Polymorph Monkey
17 Teleport: Orgrimmar 60 Polymorph Penguin
17 Teleport: Silvermoon 60 Polymorph Turtle
17 Teleport: Stormwind 62 Teleport: Shattrath
17 Teleport: Theramore 64 Spellsteal
17 Teleport: Thunder Bluff 66 Portal: Shattrath
17 Teleport: Undercity 71 Ancient Teleport Dalaran
28 Cone of Cold 71 Teleport: Dalaran
29 Remove Curse 72 Conjure Refreshment table
32 Slow Fall 74
38 Conjure Refreshment 74 Portal: Dalaran
42 Portal: Darnassus 74 Ancient Portal: Dalaran
42 Portal: Exodar 80
42 Portal: Ironforge 84 Time Warp
42 Portal: Orgrimmar 85 Portal: Tol Barad
42 Portal: Silvermoon 85 Teleport: Tol Barad
42 Portal: Stormwind 90 Teleport Vale of Eternal Blossoms
42 Portal: Theramore 90 Portal to Vale of Eternal Blossoms
42 Portal: Thunder Bluff 92 Portal: Stormshield
42 Portal: Undercity 92 Teleport: Stormshield
50 Wizardry (P) 92 Portal: Warspear
52 Portal: Stonard 92 Teleport: Warspear

 

 

 

 

The Specialization (spec) Abilities for Mages

Each of these groups of spells are unique to the particular spec. Only Arcane Mages get Arcane Blast, for example.

At level 10 you will pick one of the three specializations and you will be locked into that spec. With the Mists of Pandaria changes your abilities define what you are. The talents add flavor.

Mage specs are divided into three primary elements, Arcane, Fire, and Frost, each possessing far more than simple visual difference.

Arcane Spec Fire Spec Frost Spec
Create and spend arcane charges to build more power and to drive Arcane Barrage and Evocation And there was much burnination. Crit happy. Chance for free Pyroblasts. Lots of Dots. Chance for free spells, lots of freezing and slowing, more damage against frozen.
10 Arcane Blast 10 Pyroblast 10 Summon Water Elemental
10 12 Fireball 12 Frostbolt
12 Arcane Barrage 22 Scorch 16 ** Shatter
18 ** Arcane Explosion 24 Inferno Blast 22 ** Ice Lance
22 34 24 Fingers of Frost
24 Arcane Missiles 36 Critical Mass 36 Icy Veins
36 Slow 44 ** Flamestrike 52
40 ** Evocation 62 Dragon’s Breath 54
62 Arcane Power 77 62 Frozen Orb
80 80 Mastery: Ignite 66
80 85 77
90 80 Mastery: Icicles
90
** These abilities are either brand new for Warlords or have been restricted to one spec. For example, “Shatter” is now Frost only.

Arcane Spec

Undead Mage
Death to the Living!

Arcane is seen by some as a raiding tree, largely due to the high mana constraints placed on raiding mages (from 5-10 minute long fights) as opposed to PvP, where high burst is favored over consistency. The squishiest of mages, Arcane PvP is challenging. Still, they can do a lot of damage and if you are part of a decent team, or really know what you’re doing, then PvP can be great fun.

Arcane Mage Leveling

Arcane is a spec that was simply not designed for leveling, prior to 4.0. With 4.0 it became lot less painful than it used to be and Arcane is a viable and fun leveling spec with big numbers and cool stuff. Arcane mages do very well in instances (Dungeon Leveling.)

For more about the Arcane spec, see our Arcane DPS page, for raiding mages, or our Arcane PvP page for laying waste to other players.

Leveling? Then see our Mage leveling guide or our recommended 1-120 leveling guide, here.

Fire Spec

The original Burninator.

Fire is the burst tree, boasting massive amounts of damage including more than a few incapacitation abilities/augmentation.  This comes from Abilities such as Pyroblast  (procs from crits,) and Dragon’s Breath, a frontal cone disorientation spell.

With Mists of Pandaria Fire is a bit less “run and gun,” but not a lot less. Damage is fine and the new talents can add more survivability than before.

In Warlords more abilities have moved around. The net effect should be little real change.

Fire is the burst damage tree, massive damages, pyroblasts, etc.  If you’re looking for anything from a good leveling build to raiding to battleground PvP, then fire is one of the easier choices.  Most styles of play can be compensated for by picking up the generally viable talents in this tree, it’s all a matter of how you use them.

By properly gearing yourself you can fit literally almost any situation as fire, it presents the range and damage efficiency required for raiding, the burst potential desperately needed in PvP, and with some good spell rotation becomes an extremely efficient grinding machine.

Fire is quite viable in (mainly) battleground PvP though Frost is considered the PvP spec. Still, Fire is making a good show in the Arenas.

The one catch with Fire is that it’s very crit dependent and crits are random. This is good when you’re lucky and frustrating when the procs don’t happen. If you carefully look over the Fire abilities you might note that there will be more Pyroblast procs than you might otherwise think from your crit rating. More Crit rating = more free pyroblasts and those pyroblasts hit harder, too.

Fire Mage Leveling

Going fire as your primary talent line-up while leveling is probably the best idea for those new to the mage class, it’s simple, easily learned, and configured for any setup, and eliminates quite a bit of the problems you can run into when trying the alternative leveling strategies inherent in the other talent builds.

Start out with Pyroblast and, more often than not, you’ll never be touched. Especially when your crits proc the free shots.

For more detailed info, including rotations and such, see our Fire DPS and Fire PvP guides. If you’re leveling your mage then see our Mage leveling guide or our recommended 1-120 leveling guide, here.

Frost Spec

Frost represents a combination of Fire and Arcane, less burst damage than fire and less sustained DPS than arcane, especially with shatter (which only Frost now gets) and a couple more increased critical damage talents.  Additionally it has some of the mana regeneration of arcane, not completely as effective, but still enough to make it worthwhile. The survivability and crowd control aspect of Frost make it a favorite PvP and leveling spec.

In Warlords Frost should be able to continue as the PvP spec, and also do very well at leveling and in raids.

Frost is probably the best starting PvP build for an experimenting Mage due to how much more forgiving it can be.  By possessing more than a few tools to increase your life-span you’ll find yourself in the possession of far more opportunities to, at the very least, live through a given fight, if not defeat the opponent outright.

Frost is also an equally effective leveling build comparative to fire, instead of killing monsters before they can get to you, you kill them via a small amount of kiting if necessary augmented by the frost spell’s snare effects.

Frost Mage Leveling

Leveling as frost will be likely similar speeds to fire, if not slightly faster, depending on your degree of skill concerning frost’s primary calling card, snares and roots.  Frost mages are all about mobility, survivability, and in many cases AoE grinding as opposed to fire’s strictly “one at a time” kill scheme.

Frost deals maximum damage when the target is frozen, big secret right there, so obviously the more the target is frozen, the more criticals you throw out, the higher damage dealt overall, etc.

Also see our Frost DPS and Frost PvP pages. If you’re leveling your mage then see our Mage leveling guide or our recommended 1-120 leveling guide, here.

 

 

Mage PvP

With the release of WoW 4.0 Frost became a superb PvP build for mages, combining crowd control, very good survivability, and major damage. The other specs have less of the first two, but they also do plenty of damage, making all three trees at least decent in battleground PvP.

With Mists of Pandaria, well, things became a bit more interesting. The talent changes evened things out a lot.

In Warlords of Draenor your abilities have shifted around a bit, so Frost feels much the same, while Fire and Arcane lost the frostie aspects (eg: Shatter,) but gained some in their own feel. Frost is still the PvP kind, but the others can do Ok. All do decent to very nice damage in raids.

With the 5.0.4 patch mana pools became essentially bottomless. A mage wouldn’t use 10% of their mana much less run out. This hasn’t changed in Warlords.

You must focus on dealing as much damage as possible as early as possible to almost every class to be effective in PvP, plus be aware of all of your own escapes, shields, and CC abilities. And you must be able to fire them off as you need them, which out looking for them or forgetting them. Put your abilities into keybinds and learn them. Then, once you have that down, an intimate knowledge of the other classes is very desirable.

But, there are exceptions to the rule – for Frost Mages especially you will find that there is a great deal more survivability in your spec because of the power of spells like Ice Block and Frost Nova. You can usually withstand almost double the damage as your counterparts – of course your burst damage potential is greatly diminished (barring flavor of the month effects,) but you have some interesting talents that make up for that.

Be aware of what your opponents can do. If you’re not aware of what a Subtlety Rogue can do then he’ll catch you by surprise and you’ll be way down in HP, silenced, stunned, and mostly locked up. If you are aware then you can plan your counters.

Unlike practice and trial and error, a good mage works with the expertise of past players to provide a complete outlook on the various methods you will use to effectively defeat any opponent in the game, even those such as the Warlock who are seemingly built to kill Mages.

Above all, practice. Blast the target dummies in your downtime so that you have a handle on your routines. Include you interrupts, CC, escapes, and any other useful abilities you have. The more 2nd nature your spell-casting and escaping, the better off you’ll be.

Check out Skill-Capped for more PvP Magery.

 

 

Stats for Mages

While you’re leveling you won’t have to worry so much about the secondary stats (Hit, Crit, etc.) Just grab gear with Int and Stam and maybe +damage and you’re good. At 100 you can start thinking more about those stats and gems and enchants and so on. (And check this out to get to 100 fast.)

The Stats:

  • Intellect adds directly to your SpellPower and adds a small bonus to crit with your spells. With 5.0 Int no longer adds to Manapool, but it’s still your #1 stat.
  • Stamina is more important for PvP than raiding or leveling, but you need enough to survive in any given situation. Stack it at low levels, at higher levels your gear will provide enough.
  • Spell Power – you can never have enough, but it now only appears on some gear, such as trinkets and weapons.
  • Crit rating – Crits do 200% total damage (150% in PvP.) Fire can’t get enough of it and it’s a decent stat for the others, as well. Note that Crit is also Fire’s Attuned stat.
  • Direct Damage – some low level gear has +X fire/frost/arcane damage. While you will give up Stamina or Int, it is a nice add to your basic damage type.
  • Haste speeds up everything you do. Your casting is faster, your “over time” spells burn faster, your mana returns faster, etc. It’s a nice stat for all mages.
  • Mastery improves some aspect of what you do. Arcane loves it, Fire is Ok with it, and Frost would rather get rid of it.

Other Stats

  • Spirit is useless for a mage.
  • Agility is useless for a mage.
  • Strength is useless for a mage.
  • PvP power is for PvP only and increases damage (and healing) to players. It’s gone on Warlords gear, but exists on lower level gear.
  • Resilience, as with PvP Power, only appear on gear that’s level 90 and lower. It reduces player damage done to you, so gear with that stat is desireable.

 

Gems for Mages

Can you afford those nice gems? If not, then go here, grab this guide, and start earning some serious gold.

In Warlords of Draenor the Stats Squish is in. This means that gems have about 1/16th their Mists of Pandaria Value (160 Int down to 10 Int, 320 Crit down to 20.) The proportional values of the gems to the rest of your gear, also squished, will be very close to what it was before.

There are no socket colors, all gems fit all sockets. No gems have Int. Sockets are actually pretty uncommon and are random.

The best Warlords gems in 6.2 are:

There are all very expensive. There is a “greater” version of each gem with 50 point value and a basic version, just “Critical Strike Taladite,” for example, that’s very cheap and has 35 points.

Gem Note: Gem sockets are uncommon on Warlords gear and none of the vendor gear comes with sockets. All sockets will appear on gear that’s dropped, in a box, or otherwise won.

Older Gems that used to add Hit now add Crit, those that had Expertise now add Haste. Generally you would match socket colors, especially if the bonus is Int or your “Attuned” stat. Fire might want to use orange Int/Crit games in Red sockets instead of straight Int gems.

Your Mage bonus adds to any Int gem bonuses, making them worth 5% more Int. That bonus does not add to other stats.

Note: the three legendary gems below (Courageous, Sinister, and Capacitive) do not proc their specials the Battlegrounds or arenas, so aren’t quite so nice for that form of PvP.

Gems for gear under item level 600.
Meta Courageous Primal Diamond: +20 Intellect and chance on beneficial spell to make your spells cost no mana for 4 sec.
Sinister Primal Diamond: +20 Critical Strike, and chance on spell damage to gain 30% spell haste
Capacitive Primal Diamond: +20 Critical Strike, and chance on melee or ranged hit to gain Capacitance
Burning Primal Diamond: +14 Int & 3% Increased Crit Effect
Forlorn Primal Diamond: +14 Intellect and 10% Silence Reduction
Tyrannical Primal Diamond: +42 PVP Power and +48 Resilience, requires 27k earned conquest points and iLevel 476, cost 1k conquest points.
Red Brilliant Primordial Ruby: 10 Int
Yellow Quick Sun’s Radiance: +20 Haste
Fractured Sun’s Radiance: +20 Mastery
Smooth Sun’s Radiance: +20 Crit
Blue Stormy River’s Heart: +10 PvP power
Rigid River’s Heart: +20 Crit
Orange Potent Vermilion Onyx: +5 Int & +10 Crit
Reckless Vermilion Onyx: 5 Int & 10 Haste
Artful Vermilion Onyx: +5 Int & +10 Mastery
Green Sensei’s Wild Jade: +10 Crit and +10 Mastery
Purple Mysterious Imperial Amethyst: +5 Int, +5 PvP Power
Veiled Imperial Amethyst: 5 Int and 10 Crit
Prismatic Brilliant Primordial Ruby: 10 Int
Cogwheel Requires an engie helm, such as this.
Quick Tinker’s Gear: 38 Haste
Smooth Tinker’s Gear: 38 Crit
Fractured Tinker’s Gear: 38 Mastery

 

Mage Enchantments

In Warlords the new enchants are only for neck, cloak, rings, and weapons. As with the gems they do not code for Int, only the secondary stats. All the new enchants can be added to lower level gear, even level 1 gear, and will scale down appropriately.

Warlords of Draenor Enchantments
Weapons,
Main & Off-Hand
Cloak
Rings
Neck

And for the gear under level 90:

Various Mage Enchantments for older gear.
Weapon Enchant Weapon – Jade Spirit: Sometimes increases Int by 83, might increase Spirit by 750 if mana is low.
Enchant Weapon – Windsong: Sometimes increase Crit, Haste, or Mastery by 75 for 12 seconds.
Enchant Weapon – Glorious Tyranny: 38 PvP Power, 50% Disarm reduction, cost is 1,000 Conquest points.
Living Steel Weapon Chain: 50% Disarm Reduction, +12 Crit
Off Hand: Enchant Off-Hand – Major Intellect: +25 Int
Shoulders Greater Crane Wing Inscription: +15 Int and 5 Crit
Cloak Enchant Cloak – Superior Intellect: +15 Int
Chest Enchant Chest – Glorious Stats: +9 to all Stats
Bracers Enchant Bracer – Super Intellect: +15 Int
Gloves Enchant Gloves – Superior Mastery: +25 Mastery
Belt Livingsteel Belt Buckle: Gem slot for a nice Int gem
Leggings Greater Cerulean Spellthread: +19 Int and +11 Crit
Boots Enchant Boots – Greater Precison: +12 Crit rating
Enchant Boots – Pandaren’s Step: +10 Mastery, slight run speed increase.
Enchant Boots – Greater Haste: +12 Haste
Rings Enchant Ring – Greater Intellect: +10 Int, Requires Enchanting 550

 

Which Race Should Your Mage Pick?

Pandaren Mage
Pandaren Mage

As of Cataclysm, the only race that cannot be a mage is the Tauren. They are joined by the Highmountain Tauren.

Every other race can join the mage club.

Really, the best choice for race is to pick the one that fits your game. If you want to get every last bit of efficiency then some choices have advantages as mages. Orcs and Trolls are probably best for raiding, with Draenei being next. For PvP Orc (Enrage & Stun resist) or Human (escape & versatility,) though Gnomes & Undead have their uses.

Skill counts for more a lot more than race, though, so play what you like.

Pandaren

Is there Zen in Magery? Pandarens get to choose sides, once they leave the starting area, whether they will join Horde or Alliance.

  • Can stun enemies with a quick strike of their hand. Might have situational use for a Mage, allowing an escape from melee range.
  • Rested (as from an Inn) XP lasts longer for faster leveling.
  • Increased benefits from food buffs
  • Good at Cooking.
  • Bouncy,” so take less falling damage, just in case you don’t cast Slow Fall.

Alliance

For the Alliance, the Draenei may be best for Raiding (with their +1% to hit chance,) while Humans and Gnomes are best for PvP.

Human:

  • Good for PvP with their Escape ability. Also allows the use of two DPS trinkets. This ability will have occasional use in PvE and leveling, as well.
  • Diplomacy is nice if you are going to be gaining faction at any point and since so much
  • past level 60 is a faction grind…
  • The Human Spirit: You gain 2% more of all secondary stats (Haste, Critical Strike, Mastery, Versatility) from all sources.

Kul Tiran – Starts at level 20. 

  • Wind up, then unleash your mighty Haymaker upon your foe. Doesn’t hurt much, but does stun then for 3 sec and knocks them back substantially. (Just picturing this one sneaking up and then SMASH! as the opener…)  2.5 minute cooldown. Knock him back then escape.
  • Brush It Off – Increases Versatility by 1%. When you take damage, heal for 2% of that amount over 4 sec.
  • Your Child of the Sea ability lets you swim a bit faster and hold your breath longer than anyone who is not Undead.
  • You are a Jack of All Trades which increases all of your Tradeskills by 5. Unfortunately it does not give you free tradeskills, just a boost to the ones you actually learn 

Gnome:

  • Gnomes have an Escape Artist skill and their small size is not to be scoffed at. It makes them a bit harder to see in the heat of a (PvP) fight and a bit harder on people who click their targets.
  • Gnomes have an increased mana pool, which is certainly of interest to any caster.
  • Engineering skill doesn’t help casting, but that skill can make some nice gadgets which will help.
  • +1% to your Haste

Mechagnome – Starts at level 20. 

  • Hyper Organic Light Originator summons a couple of images of you to distract your foes. Added DPS or use it to give yourself a moment to set something up. See it in action here.
  • And you get some Racial Passives:
    • Combat Analysis: You gather and analyze combat data every 5 sec, increasing your Int by 25, stacking up to 10 times. The data decays while out of combat.
    • Mastercraft: You function as a personal Blacksmithing Anvil, Cooking Fire, and Mining Forge. In addition, your limbs include every profession tool.
    • Emergency Failsafe: When you fall below 20% health, heal for 15% of your maximum health. This effect cannot occur more than once every 2.5 min.
    • Skeleton Pinkie: Allows opening of locked chests and doors on a level similar to yours.

Draenei:

  • A minor heal is always handy for a class that has no heals. Also usable on others.
  • A small,. but welcome, bonus to your Int.
  • Draenei are good gemcutters.

Lightforged Draenei – Starts at level 20. 

  • Your passion for killing demons (demonbane) is reflected in your earning an extra 20% experience from that action.
  • You have two area effect attacks, Light’s Judgement and Light’s Reckoning. The former lets you call down a strike onto enemies close to you, with a three second delay. Reckoning causes you to unleash the Light upon dying, damaging enemies within 8 yards and healing any allies for the same amount.
  • Not only do you get +10% to your Blacksmithing skill, you can summon a Forge of Light.

Night Elf

  • Their Shadowmeld ability has its uses while leveling or PvPing, such as lurking in wait for unssupecting targets. In instances and raids it will drop the aggro you picked up until you unmeld. Hopefully the tank has picked the mob(s) up by then. I’m sure you can find other uses for it.
  • Being a bit harder to hit is also occasionally use while leveling or in PvP. Again, not much use in raiding, plus 2% faster run speed
  • Faster movement while dead is an interesting perk…
  • +1% Crit by day, +1% Haste by night

Void Elf – Starts at level 20. 

  • Your abilities have a chance to empower you with the essence of the Void, Entropic Embrace, which increases your damage by 5% for 12 sec. It has a 33% proc chance with 60 seconds internal cooldown. Nothing like a bit of Void energy added to your attacks, right?
  • Spatial Rift: Tear a rift in space. Reactivate this ability to teleport through the rift. 30 yd range. 3 min cooldown. You can activate this, then change direction, hit it again, and be back to the original spot.

Example: Mobs chasing you? Fire it to one side of a rock/pillar/hill and run to the other side. When you hit it, you will portal through the rock and the mobs will have to run the long way round. The rift can’t go through solid objects but you certainly can. Even on flat ground, if you run at right angles to the line of fire, you can portal a fair distance. Put it up at the edge of a cliff and jump off, then port back. Experiment with it. 

Dwarf

  • Stone form is nice in PvP and of occasional use elsewhere. It also reduces damage by 10%, which is of some benefit in those “Oh Rats!” situations.
  • +2% critical damage.
  • Dwarves are good with Archeology

Dark Iron Dwarf – Starts at level 20. 

  • Your Fireblood removes all poison, disease, curse, magic, and bleed effects, just like your Dwarven “brethren,” but your ability increases your primary stat (Intelligence) by 600(!) (scales with level) +200 for for each additional effect removed. Lasts 8 sec. with a 2 min cooldown.
  • You’re a tunnel dweller and Dungeon Delver and you’ve learned how to move 4% faster while indoors, plus your people have the Mole Machines: While outdoors you can summon a Mole Machine that tunnels through the earth and can pop you up in a variety of places.

Worgen

  • Your Altered Form allows you to switch between your human and Worgen forms and your Two Forms lets you turn into your currently inactive form.
  • Then your Darkflight activates your true form, increasing current movement speed by an additional 40% for 10 sec. Always nice to have a Sprint.
  • You also have your Running Wild ability, where you drop to all fours to run as fast as a wild animal.
  • Flayer increases your Skinning skill by 15 and allows you to skin faster.
  • And your inate Viciousness increases critical strike chance by 1%.

Horde

For PvE? Troll or Orc

For PvP? Troll or Orc for offense, or Undead for “Will of the Forsaken.”

Undead:

  • Will of the Forsaken is a nice PvP ability, but much more situational outside of PvP.
  • Cannibalize is useful every now and then, especially if you need to heal while in combat or “rub it in” to some player you just killed.
  • Touch of the Grave is a passive ability that drains life and heals. It will add a bit to your damage numbers.
  • Indefinite Underwater Breathing will find use here and there.

Troll:

  • Berserking increases casting speed by 20% for a few seconds. Very nice, drop it into a macro.
  • Beast Slaying is nice for leveling since it adds 20% XP to your beast kills.
  • Voodoo shuffle is a help in PvP, but situational elsewhere.

Zandalari Troll – Starts at level 20. 

  • Your Embrace of the Loa ability allows you to choose which Loa you are associated with. Has a 5 day cooldown, so choose wisely.
    • Embrace of Akunda – Your healing abilities have a chance to heal their target. A Warrior, with healing abilities? Hmmm…
    • Embrace of Bwonsamdi – Your damaging abilities have a chance to deal Shadow damage and heal you for 100% of the damage done. Pretty good general ability.
    • Embrace of Gonk – Increase movement speed by 5%.
    • Embrace of Kimbul – Your damaging abilities have a chance to cause the target to bleed over 6s. This effect stacks up to 3 times. More damage is always good.
    • Embrace of Krag’wa – Taking damage has a chance to grant you additional Health and 66 Armor. Good tanking ability.
    • Embrace of Pa’ku – Your abilities have a chance to grant you +4% critical strike for 12 seconds. Live by the crit? This is for you. Are you listening, Pyros?
  • Regeneratin’ – Regenerate 100% of your maximum health over 6 sec, interrupted by damage. 2.5 min cooldown.
  • Pterrordax Swoop – Slows your fall for two minutes. Time for some serious cliff jumpin’.

Blood Elf:

  • An increase to Enchanting skill is of no direct use, but ‘chanters get some self-only ‘chants which are nice.
  • Arcane Torrent is of little use, since it doesn’t return much mana and the opponent has to be close to you for the silence to work and casters will rarely be that close. On the other hand, if you’re bouncing in to drop a Frost Nova then an AT might not be a bad thing to throw in along with it.
  • +1% Crit rating

Orc

  • Blood Fury adds to spell power as well as attack power. Put it in a macro.
  • No useful mage specific abilities, though the increased resistance to stun does have some general use.

Goblin

Nightbourne – Starts at level 20. 

  • You can do an Arcane Pulse, which slightly damages all nearby enemies and reduces their speed for 12 seconds. Note that this will break any Sap or Blind you might have on those enemies. 3 minute cooldown.
  • Can read your mail from anywhere, with your Cantrips ability.
  • Your love of Ancient History give you +15% to your Inscription skill.

Mag’har Orc – Starts at level 20.

  • Your Ancestral Call will boost a random secondary stat (crit, haste, versatility) for 12 seconds on a 2 minute cooldown. The boost scales with level.
  • Your love of the open skies increases your mounted speed by 10% and your…
  • Savage health, you barbarian you, reduces the duration of curses, poisons, and diseases by 10%.
  • If you could have a pet it would have a 10% health boost.

Vulpera – Starts at level 20. 

  • Bag of Tricks: Cunning thing that you are you can use a trick on an enemy to damage them or on an ally to heal them.
  • Make Camp: Set your camp location outdoors and then you can use Return to Camp, which teleports back to your camp location. Basically another hearthstone.
  • Nose for Trouble: Take a little less damage from the first strike inflicted by an enemy.

 

Mage Professions

So far as tradeskills go, it’s a fairly obvious choice as to what you’ll be picking up if you want to maximize your gear levels the instant you hit max level, and that would be Tailoring.  Tailoring gives us not only consistent and useful upgrades in the lower levels, but increasingly rewarding instance level gear upgrades once you venture into Outland and beyond. On the other hand, if you’re decked out in heirlooms…

Multiple sets of cloth armor are better than instance gear of the same level and more accessible even for a brand new 60, 70. or 85. All it takes is a high, if not maxed out, tailoring skill by the time you reach the appropriate level.  Since tailoring doesn’t possess any specific synergies tradeskill wise, you can always grab mining or some other gathering profession to aid funding your primary crafting abilities. Enchanting will let you disenchant tailored items that you don’t want to try and sell or otherwise dispose of. You can then use or sell the Enchanting mats.

Keep in mind that all the crafting skills are very expensive to level up. If you’re going to work on the expensive tailoring or brutally expensive Enchanting then you will need to have a pretty solid gold stash. If you don’t have that, then you may have to skip them, but drop Enchanting first.

Another option is to spend some time farming appropriate materials.

Other useful skills and min/maxing:

Note that in Warlords of Draenor all the profession bonuses are dead. Not more +Int cloak enchant for you tailors.

  • Alchemy will keep you in mana and healing potions, as well as all sorts of other potions, elixers, etc. Alchemists can also create a pretty nice trinket which provides additional healing and mana from effects which restore those.
  • Inscription has several “off-hand” items that are very nice, as well as staves and the high-end shoulder inscriptions, not to mention glyphs and fortune cards.
  • Jewelcrafting  is nive for making gems, jewelry, and shiney things, including gemmed panther mounts.
  • Blacksmithing – Nothing much here for you.
  • Engineering – Engineering enchants do not overwrite the Enchanting enchants. Engie gadgets suffer from the occasional “interesting” side-effects. Keep this in mind if you go with this skill.
    • Nitro Boosts are applied to your belt.
    • Lightweight head armor with special engineering sockets. You can choose from different tinker’s gears, each granting  38 pts of some secondary stat, such as Crit.
  • Enchantingyou can make all those enchants, plus enchants for rings and neck items in Warlords.
  • LeatherworkingNothing here for mages. Move along.
  • First Aid is essential, keep it maxed at all times.
  • Cooking is very useful with all the healing and buffing foods it provides.
  • Herbalism, Mining, and skinning are good skills to have for gold creation or to feed one of the above crafts.

 


The Fastest Mage Leveling

Zygor's Guide for WarlordsOnce you have the right build in mind for your Mage your next step is to get a full blown Mage leveling guide for the most effective (fastest) leveling.

Why? With thousands of quests and a million mobs to grind the trip to the highest levels can take awhile. A long while. An in-game leveling guide makes the whole trek a whole lot easier.

Pick your starting point and the guide will show you where to go, what to do, and keep track of your objectives (such as Kill X of…).

Zygor’s Guide automatically updates and advances as you complete tasks and quests, sets a waypoint arrow automatically (always showing you where to go next,) and includes all the important quest info. Zygor does this even if you’ve gained levels in the dungeons or PvP Battlegrounds. Leave off the questing to gain a few levels elsewhere, then come back and Zygor will figure out where you are and show you the best place to go next, automatically.

Whether you’re brand new to WoW, covered from head to toe in Heirlooms, or just boosted to 90, Zygor will show you the way to get leveled as fast as possible.

Zygor’s always fully updated for the latest patches of every expansion, including Warlords of Draenor. You will probably never need to look at your quest log again, much less browse some website. Grab your copy here and get leveled fast.

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