I'm the raid leader of a smallish, non-leading progression guild on Shadowsong.
Our mages suck. Full stop.
When BC hit, both our class officers and our best mage quit the guild. We've been reeling ever since, trying to rebuild the class.
So far, failure.
That's background. Now, the point of my question on a Class Mechanics & Theorycrafting forum.
Assuming fire spec (either 31/30/0 or x/4y+/z), and assuming level 70, with access to all 5-man gear, including heroics, and given time, but assuming NOT a tailor, what should our mages be looking at for gear?
Spell damage, crit, etc. -- just a rough ballpark of what they should be achieving.
And then, assuming that base gear, something they should all be able to get, what should they be able to put out for damage-per-second (sustainable), over a 7-10 minute period, assuming raid buffs? You can assume they get Moonkin aura as well (we have one raiding moonkin due to an overabundance of healers in TBC). We do not run with an elemental shaman.
Essentially, they're putting out crap dps, and I would appreciate any help you could give me as guildelines for what they SHOULD be able to do. Gear can be upgraded -- skill cannot. And lack of skill = Recruiting Mages.
(As a rough guildeline, we have 2 warlocks who can break 1k dps over a 5 minute fight, and 2 rogues who can easily break 800, and with full consumables, come close to 1k).
Edit: I know there's 50+ pages of theorycrafting below. I've been wading through it. I'm not a mage, but a lot of it looks very interesting. It's mostly spec-oriented as far as I can tell, and thus far I've been leaning away from enforcing specs. If I have to, I will.
Last edited by constantius : 04/08/07 at 10:07 PM.
It might be a lot to look through, but the later portions of TBC Mage Theorycrafting have most if not all of what you're looking for. Also, you're pretty new here so I won't mock you for signing your post, but we can see who you are and where you're from in the profile to the left of your post, making the sign redundant.
Gear shouldn't be an issue since you can clear Karazhan and Maulgar. I might say that your meters are borked -- make sure that you've got enough synching to ensure reliable results, but I'd guess it's more likely that your mages are pvp specced and/or not paying attention. Read the thread I linked to and have a chat with them. Nicely.
Spellstrike Hood, Spellstrike Pants, Girdle of Ruination, Bracers of Havok, T4 Gloves from Curator, or the ones from Attumen. Chestpiece is a more difficult one, I'd probably choose Robe of the Crimson Order for raiding, usually goes cheap in AH. Any of the high level dungeon blue boots should do. Spaulder of the Torn-heart are an easy choice for Shoulder slot and are guaranteed quest reward for doing the questline in Shadowmoon Valley. Brooch of Hightened Potential rivals most of the epic necks in game. Karazhan reputation Ring is decent, as is the Scryers exalted ring. Any of these will do also.
As for weapons and trinkets, any +120spelldamage mainhand with a decent offhand from 5mans is ok, or exalted MH from Honor Hold, if your mages can stand the grind. Quagmirrans Eye from slave pens, Nexus horn from Alcatzar, Scryer Bloodgem (excellent if you are not at the hitcap) and Icon of the Silver Crescent are the trinkets your mages should be looking for.
With this kind of gear fully enchanted we should have around +800dmg, over 100 hit rating from gear and hopefully at about ~30% critrate with fire spells using deep fire spec and maybe a proc effect from trinket on top of that. Both, 33/28 or 10/48/3 are both ok raiding specs with later one comming on top usually. Even deep frost mages can do ok, if they can optimize their DPS, by cunning movement and outsmarting the encounters, but it requires somewhat more skill in "metagamish" level, and such mage would still perform better by using a fire spec.
However, both next bosses that you are probably facing (Magtheridon and Gruul) don't require gigantic amounts of DPS, and good warlocks will trivialize both encounters quite a bit. Hydross is somewhat different story, but I don't want to comment too much about it, as I've not beaten him yet.
DPS-numbers shown on these boards should be taken with a grain of salt, as there is not one good "benchmark boss" in game, except Patchwerk. With such gear as I've proposed about 800dps should be achieved fairly easy with normal raidbuffs with decent sustainability and no dps consumables except maybe a mana potion every now and then, assuming non-stop casting with no movement.
Having looked at your guild's armory profile, your mages really seem to be using an excessive amount of level-60 gear. Lose the Netherwind and Enigma and they should notice an improvement right away. Almost every single mage is wearing at least one, sometimes upwards of five, pieces of BWL gear. That isn't enough for level 70 endgame content if they want to be competitive.
Most of the mages on that list don't play anymore (using Armoury as a list).
The ones who do are either new recruits or the aforementioned slackers. The only one who got his gear was a mage named Firelight, and he almost immediately stopped playing his mage after he got all that gear, and leveled a shaman (69 today, I think).
I wish they all looked like Firelight. 988 Fire/Arcane unbuffed with 21.67% crit rating. :-(
Other than maybe a tear there isn't a single piece of BWL gear I could really ever see justified level 65+.
This could be said for all trinkets from BWL, and for priests and druids, 3-piece T2. It takes near T4-level gear to replace the 3-piece bonus on Transcendence. I wore my Trans until I got 2/2 Whitemend, and then dumped it for a net loss of 6 Mp5, but a gain of over 100 +heal.
Feel free to check out my profile Const. I am a tailor, but a poor one, and I got my epic mount before finishing my spellfire set. That said, I'm not wearing any of the pieces, but feel I can crank out some decent DPS in Kara and 5 mans. Most mages in my guild are at least 30 arcane, so get a good boost off of AP for DPS. I'm one of the only fire based DPSers left and if it wasn't for the locks who use fire, I'd prolly be facing a respec with my scorch heavy build.
The above mentioned itemization is very solid. As temporary placeholders for the spellstrike stuff I'd recommend the Tourmaline Crown (quest reward) and the Incanter's Trousers (5 man). While ROC's progress hasn't gone past curator yet, we're close to dropping him and our DPS is sufficient on the adds to merit passing the encounter.
I'm a crit based AB/Scorch spec though, so gear choices more geared to a particular spec may be in order. However for comparison's sake I'm at 35% crit AB, 39% crit scorch/fireblast +665 dam.
I was grinding a bit, for raiding replace:
Mark of Defiance with Neltharion's Tear
Robe of Oblivion with Robe of the Crimson Order
Necklace of Bloodied Feathers with Brooch of Heightened Potential
Spell-slinger's Protector with Sethekk Oracle Cloak
I'm one of the guild's few non-tailoring mages. I sit at about 800dmg and 27% fire crit self-buffed. With this gear and spec I out-dpsed a full-tailoring shadowpriest, a partial-tailoring warlock, and our best-geared sword rogue (and everyone else, for that matter) on our last Kara run except for Oz where I was busy with the gimmick. We happened to not have a paladin that run so threat was a problem for the shadowpriest, who would normally trounce me handily.
Anyway that seems like a decent non-tailoring gear level to shoot for as a minimum. I don't really think "skill" plays much role in a mage's dps on single-target fights especially with a fireball spec (33/28 or 10/48/3). Press button, do damage, it's not hard!
I agree with the others that the problem is more gear than skill. Other than learning when to use Arcane Blast for maximum mana efficiency (or inefficiency, as the fight demands), there's not a lot to it.
What you CAN do is provide incentives for the mages to get better gear. Only bring the one or two best geared mages and fill out the other slots with warlocks/hunters/other ranged DPS (elemental shaman, shadow priest, etc). If you publicly announce that their ability to attend the raid is dependent on their dedication to gear themselves outside of raids, you should see a dramatic change in attitude. Or not.
Either way you win, though. You'll either get mages with better gear, or you'll see these guys aren't even willing to run 5 mans for gear upgrades and they'll realize there's no free ride for raid purples.
In the encounters you are working on, warlocks seem superior to mages anyway. They have better damage if you have a shadow priest in the group, and Curse of Tongues and Banish add more utility than Polymorph. As long as you have one mage for Arcane Int, Water, and Amplify Magic, most fights don't require more. Once they get their DPS up, sure, bring them all along.