But it [the proc from Tailoring/Engineering] can be pretty chaotic in a moving fight with the loss of proc.
I can't understand, why procs shouldn't work well together with movement phases. Of course, there is a chance that the proc gets lost completely, but remember that a flat stat is "lost" in movement phases also - and every time. As long as the proc and the flat bonus are equal on non-movement fights, you compare loosing more sometimes against loosing less everytime.
The only difference I can see is, that most notably in the arcane spec (no dots) you won't trigger procs in movement phases, what results in more uptime while not moving => the proc is more effective.
The synergy with other cooldowns and procs is what making Tailoring and Engineering more desirable, in my opinion. Flat damage increases also lack the fun and the possibility at different encounters. We got an amazing new spell called Combustion, which can result in really high damage if used wisely. The same applies to procs and cooldowns that are provided by Engineering and Tailoring.
When comparing profession bonuses, we shouldn't forget that permanent Intellect bonuses are far more valuable for Arcane then temporary procs because of way Mage Armor works. Also, the additional initial mana is another small boost. Early Simcraft output suggests that 1 Int ~= 2 SP, so it seems that Tailoring will not be a competitive option anymore.
With the above in mind, it seems that Leatherworking will be the best option for Arcane with a good margin, followed by Jewelcrafting and all the other 80 Int professions.
The Chaotic meta gem requirements will be reversed back to what they were in Wrath (Blizzard Post, thanks CedricKT). So, there is only 1 meta for DPS, 2 for healing (int/mana vs. spi/crit) and 2-3 for tanks (armour, magic, block) and some for PvP. Oh, well, it felt nice to have a choice between 2 meta, even if it took some effort to figure out which setup was better.
Perhaps one day there will we another meta gem for DPSers, perhaps an effect like the Mystic meta like in BC, just a bit more balance and less broken. When 2/3 of the raid use 1 meta and spam rubies, the whole system feel a bit bland and hollow.
I wouldn't rule out the Ember Shadowspirit Diamond for Arcane yet (until more theorycrafting is done). With Crit as our weakest stat and with the low crit rates in the first gear tiers, I don't see it adding a whole lot to our damage output.
What would it take for the other metas to come close? Ember could probably be viable for Arcane, but reduced threat and minor run speed just don't cut it for any spec. Minor run speed isn't too bad, but most of the time the run speed boots are taken anyway. Reduced threat, though? It seems like it's one of those traps they're trying to cut out of the game, and even if someone was bad at watching their threat, it wouldn't likely be taken anyway.
Adding at least one more viable meta choice would make it more interesting, at least.
As an aside, what would the impact have been if the requirements wanted more yellows than reds, rather than more blues than reds? Would it not have changed enough, or would the difference between having straight int/ a combination of int and secondary stats even it out?
What would it take for the other metas to come close?
As an aside, what would the impact have been if the requirements wanted more yellows than reds, rather than more blues than reds?
None of the other meta gems effect offer a DPS increase at the moment. That would have to change. CSD is a 1.5% increase for Arcane, 2% or more for Fire/Frost. Ember for Arcane? Mana is too weak as a resource. Add more mana? You'd break healing mechanics. Threat? You already do 2% less threat by not taking this meta.* Haste proc? The TBC Mystic meta (half cast time procs)?
"More yellow than red" would make that whole thing worse before Heroic T11 gear. It still means "more Ratings than intellect" and in addition will make gemming blue (hit) stats a punishment. So you'd have to hit cap from gear/reforging alone, good luck with that. It's likely possible in full heroic T11, but you can't easiyl juggle some hit ratign with gems any more. Blue and yellow sockets are fungible otherwise due to reforging.
When calculating the % increase worth of intellect (102 int =1% at 10200 int), I think that you forgot to take the spell's base damage in consideration. Spellpower would scale linear (2 times more sp= twice the damage) if the base damage of a spell was 0 but this isn't the case. When you calculate it, you should add the coefficient of the spell multiplied by it's base damage to your spellpower to have a more appropriate value of the % of increase 102 int actually gives.
Would there be any interest in a pre-raid preparation heroics loot list? I just finish making one for my guild, and if it's not already done somewhere else on this site (I mostly lurk mage forums) then I will gladly copy / reformat it for EJ use. Basically it's: every 346 or non-raid 359 item, sorted by item slot, with a summary listing the most desired heroic dungeons (by number of DPS caster drops per). I realize some of the rep and craftable items are already listed in this thread but I have taken further steps by including all heroic drops.
If there's no need, I will gladly request deletion of this post.
Below is a preview; I'm looking up how to fix the errant ilvls right now.
EDIT: After quite a bit of searching about, I just can't find a fix for the tooltips showing the 333 version, since they have the same names. Someone please bonk me over the head here, if you know the answer.
EDIT 2: After posting, I received several PM's asking for the full version and am posting it here. SOME item links don't have the accurate ilvl; please just click on them to see the correct version on Wowhead until I've figured it out.
EDIT 3: I somehow forgot feet. Fixed.
ITEMS PER HEROIC DUNGEON
7 - Halls of Origination
6 - Deadmines
5 - Throne of the Tides, Blackrock Caverns, Lost City of the Tol'vir
4 - Shadowfang Keep, Grim Batol, Stonecore
3 - Vortex Pinnacle
Thank you Valaran, that looks like a pretty good guide towards gearing up our mages as we get ready to raid. I did have 1 question regarding the trinkets - why is [Lifebound Alchemist Stone] on top? It looks like several other trinkets would be more valuable.