Introduction:Welcome to my Fire Mage for Mists of Pandaria! Mages have had a lot of changes since Cataclysm, however, we are still a class that is able to pump out incredible damage and with the recent changes we have more survivability and self-healing than ever before. Although our single target damage is slightly higher, we have lost a lot of our burst AoE potential, our area damage is now a ramp up and we should be considered to be more of a cleave class than AoE.
Noteworthy Patch Changes:NOTE: All recent changes from patch 5.4 will be indicated by this color.
- Combustion now deals additional damage equal to 20% of Ignite's damage per tick (down from 50%). A large nerf to the spec which will reduce our DPS range making us slightly more consistent on single target whle also nerfing our cleave damage significantly.
- Ice Floes now has 3 charges (up from 2 charges), and has a 20-second cooldown (down from 45 seconds). A nice buff to an unused spell, will be more beneficial for Arcane, Fire will still take PoM in almost all situations.
- Rune of Power now has an increased effective range. The Mage can remain up to 8 yards away from their Rune of Power and still receive benefits to mana regeneration and spell damage (up from 3 yards). Increased RoP range, Fire is unaffected since Invocation is still the best talent for Fire.
- Temporal Shield now also reduces damage taken by 15% while active in addition to existing effects. An amazing buff to our defenses!
- Glyph of Invisibility has been replaced with Glyph of Rapid Displacement. Glyph of Rapid Displacement gives Blink two charges, gaining a charge every 15 seconds, but no longer frees the Mage from stuns and bonds. A really nice mobility buff, this glyph will come in quite useful on a handful of SoO fights.
A lot of our spells have changed for Mists of Pandaria, I have noted all of the changes below in Alphabetical order.
Alter Time - Our brand new spell at Level 87!
Arcane Brilliance - Now gives 10% Spell Power and 5% Crit Chance.
Burning Soul - We now have this as a baseline passive.
Combustion - No longer takes Mage Bombs or Pyroblast into account and is solely 20% of your current Ignite.
Conjure Refreshment Table - No longer requires reagents.
Counterspell - We now have Improved Counterspell as a baseline ability.
Critical Mass - Now multiplies our crit chance with main spells by 1.30x.
Deep Freeze - Is available to all specs and no longer does damage.
Flamestrike - Now has a cooldown and cast time.
Heating Up - We now get a visual when we have crit once, another crit will proc Pyroblast.
Ignite - No longer requires a crit and is now our Mastery.
Fire Blast - Now known as Inferno Blast, will always spread DoTs to nearby targets and is a guaranteed crit.
Living Bomb - Can be refreshed during the last tick and it will still explode and refresh.
Molten Armor - Now reduces physical damage taken by 6%.
Nether Attunement - Our new passive which increases our mana regeneration via Haste.
Portal Teleport - No longer requires reagents.
Pyromaniac - Now increases the damage done by most of our spells and is applied by our Mage Bomb.
Shatter - Is available to all specs.
Time Warp - Is now off the global cooldown.
Race plays a key factor in squeezing out that extra DPS from your Mage, here are my recommended races for each faction:
Horde - Troll:
Berserking - An amazing cooldown that lines up with Alter Time to add aditional ticks to your DoTs.
Beast Slaying - Provides you with an amazing edge against bosses classified as Beasts.
Alliance - Worgen:
Viciousness - A straight up 1% crit gain to help us gain more Heating Up procs!
Darkflight - A nifty spell to get you out of trouble!
Epicurean - Doubles the stat bonus from food buffs from +300 to +600.
The Talent Tree System has changed dramatically for Mists of Pandaria, you should find yourself changing most of your talents depending on the encounter.
Tier 1 - Presence of Mind:
Presence of Mind works just as it did before, it allows you to cast your next cast time spell instantly and is off the global cooldown. PoM should now be your go to choice for Fire in every situation, lining this cooldown up with Combustion and Alter Time allows you to burst for a lot more due to an extra instant Pyroblast. See macros below for correct usage.
Blazing Speed gives you a large speed increase for an extremely brief duration, it now has a static cooldown instead of requiring activation.
Ice Floes is definitely the weakest option out of the bunch, it works in a similar way to a Shaman's Spirit Walker's grace, Ice Floes allows you to cast your next three spells with a cast time of less than 4 seconds on the move, it also isn't on the global cooldown and can be used while casting. Now useless for Fire since we have Scorch baseline.
Tier 2 - Temporal Shield:
Temporal Shield is my favorite spell out of the three, after activating the spell, it will take note of any damage that you take for the next four seconds and then proceed to heal ALL of that damage back over the next six seconds as well as providing 15% damage reduction for it's duration. TS is off the global cooldown and can be used during loss of control of your character. This spell becomes very strong when you can predict incoming damage, a great example would be Megaera's Rampage, Twin Consort's Barrage or even Cauterize, TS is an amazing survivability cooldown with no DPS loss on a crazy low 25 second cooldown!
Flameglow, a brand new talent added in 5.2, Flameglow will mitigate around 6,000 damage from each hit you take, up to a maximum of 30% of the attack. While this sounds nice to have a passive that you don't have to worry about, it is not a great deal of damage mitigation since most raid damage is usually in the hundreds of thousands, absorbing 6k of a 300k hit is nothing when you can use Temporal Shield to heal 300k back as a HoT. This talent should only be considered on fights will constant low ticking AoE damage, such as Will of the Emperor Heroic.
Ice Barrier, the old frost talent, works exactly the same as it did in Cataclysm, however, unlike TS, it is on the global cooldown. Nice for Heroic progression when burst damage is incoming.
Tier 3 - Frostjaw:
Ring of Frost, RoF works well for handling some trash mobs, although it will be of little use on most MoP bosses.
Ice Ward can be placed on friendly targets, when the target is hit, all enemies within 10 yards will be frozen in place for five seconds, again very little use in most PvE situations, but an interesting crowd control method.
Frostjaw locks a mob in place for eight seconds and also silences them. You can follow up with an instant Deep Freeze on small adds such as Immerseus Sha Puddles or inside Norushen's DPS challenge.
Tier 4 - Greater Invisibility:
Greater Invisibility vastly improves Invisibility, not only does it make it an instant effect but it also reduces all damage taken by 90% whilst invisible and for three seconds after being visible again, although it uses a global cooldown, the damage reduction is going to be great for when high raid damage is incoming or even to mitigate damage to avoid movement.
Cauterize, our trusty old lifesaver, works exactly the same, but we now can survive it easily without heals with the new talents, pop Temporal Shield or Ice Barrier and we are good to go again! Cauterize is best used when learning new encounters.
Cold Snap, the old Frost talent, now resets your Iceblock, Frost Nova and Cone of Cold cooldowns, providing you with a second immunity via Ice Block and also an extra Frost Nova for getting Shatters on targets.
Tier 5 - Living Bomb:
Nether Tempest is a new DoT that ticks on the primary target, but also does a secondary tick for half the damage to a target nearby. It can be cast on as many targets as you wish, making it a decent AoE attack in certain situations, Nether Tempest also scales amazingly with Haste. Best choice for 4+ targets.
Living Bomb can now be refreshed during the last tick and it will still explode as well as refreshing. Since 5.3, Living Bomb now deals more damage over time, but way less damage in the explosion. Best choice for single/multi-target (separated).
Frost Bomb is the oddball of the mage bombs, not only does it have a short cast time, but it also does no damage for four seconds until it explodes and does huge damage to the main target and all targets around it, as well as slowing all movement speed by 70%. Best choice for 6+ consistent stacked targets.
Tier 6 - Invocation:
Invocation forces us to cast Evocation every 60 seconds to maintain the damage increase (as well as maintain our mana). Invocation should be the obvious choice as it grants us full mobility.
Rune of Power forces us to stand still around our runes to maintain the damage increase (and our mana), the cast time is pretty short and should be used over Invocation on a fight with zero movement required due to the lesser cast time.
Incanter's Ward is the weakest PvE option, the passive damage increase is too low and it relies too heavily on us taking damage while it is up.
Glyph of Combustion should be taken practically 100% of the time.
Glyph of Inferno Blast allows you to spread Ignite, Pyroblast and Combustion to an additional target.
Glyph of Cone of Cold increases the damage of Cone of Cold, making this spell your highest DPET AoE.
Glyph of Armors is a strong survivability glyph that you can use on fights that have a large amount of Physical damage abilities (used in conjunction with Molten Armor).
Glyph of Counterspell is a good option if you are assigned to interrupt.
Glyph of Frostfire Bolt is something to consider if you are in need of a slow, simply swap out Fireball for FFB and with this glyph they will do identical damage. Also useful for fights with spell lockouts.
Glyph of Rapid Displacement is very useful for mobility.
Glyph of Remove Curse might be useful for fights where Curse dispelling is needed.
I recommend the following just for fun, note that Glyph of Mirror Images for Fire is a small DPS loss.
Glyph of Rapid Teleportation
Glyph of Illusion
Glyph of Arcane Language
Intellect > 15% Hit/Expertise > Crit > Haste > Mastery
Expertise now grants Spell Hit Rating, we need 15% Spell Hit in total, which is 5100 rating (4760 for Draenei). After reaching the Hit cap, we want to stack as much Crit as possible so that we can have a significantly higher chance to proc Heating Up and Pyroblast. Since 5.4 Haste will now be a lot more attractive to stack over Mastery due to the Combustion nerf. We now should focus on pumping out as many Pyroblasts as possible and more Haste will allow us to do this.
Mage Haste Breakpoints for MoP: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...ZmFYa0E#gid=39
If you are under the hit cap, do the following reforges:
Mastery & Haste: Mastery -> Hit
Crit & Mastery or Haste: Mastery or Haste -> Hit
Hit & Mastery or Haste: Mastery or Haste -> Expertise
It is fine to reforge out of Crit to gain the hit cap if you must, but try to avoid doing so, if you are over the hit cap, reforge the hit into the best stat available, and proceed to follow the stat priority listed above.
I highly recommend using Ask Mr. Robot's Optimization tool, it is by far the most accurate way to squeeze the most stats out of your character:
BiS Gear (Tier 16 - Siege of Orgrimmar):
Note that all of these items have Warforged versions except for the four tier pieces.
BiS Gear (Tier 15 - Throne of Thunder):
Note that all of these items have Thunderforged versions except for the four tier pieces.
BiS Gear (Tier 14 - MSV, HoF, ToES):
Note that the Tier 14 4set is completely useless for Fire, simply take the best stat pieces while maintaining 2set.
Gemming may look a little strange to you at first, however, secondary stat gems now have double the stats, which makes them worth more than +160 main stat.
Engineering and Tailoring are the best professions for a Mage's DPS, these professions give us large intellect buffs that will stack with our other procs and cooldowns to achieve huge burst damage. We can use our new ability Alter Time to gain extra duration on our Synapse Springs tinker and Lightweave Embroidery. Blacksmithing is worth mentioning also, it is a much better profession for very low geared Mages since it offers two additional sockets giving 640 Crit. Avoid Jewelcrafting at all costs since we preferably don't want to gem pure intellect.
You should always use the following consumables to maximize your damage:
Flask: Flask of the Warm Sun
Food: Mogu Fish Stew
Potion: Potion of the Jade Serpent
To start off with you should always ensure that you have Molten Armor and Arcane Brilliance buffed and that you have Flask and Food.
During the pull you should use Alter Time when most of your procs are present, such as Bloodlust, Berserking and trinkets, along with a Pyroblast and Heating Up proc (and PoM if you picked it in the first tier of talents). You should spam through these pyros, then manually end Alter Time and spend them again, before hopefully getting a huge number of Pyros resulting in a large Ignite.
Single Target Priority List:
Refresh Invoker's Energy buff or re-place Rune of Power
Use Combustion with a high Ignite DoT present
Use Pyroblast! if both Pyroblast! and Heating Up are present
Refresh Mage Bomb
Use Inferno Blast when Heating Up procs (if Inferno Blast is off cd)
Note that a Pyroblast that was cast from a proc will do more damage than one that was hardcasted/PoM, you should almost never hardcast a Pyroblast.
For multiple targets it is very situational and depends on the amount of mobs as well as their health. For under 4 mobs you should keep your Mage Bomb rolling on them if possible and nuke the main target while spreading your DoTs to the adds with Inferno Blast. Above 5 you should use Glyphed Cone of Cold on cooldown and spam Arcane Explosion, or if being close isn't an option, consider channeling Blizzard instead.
Your opener should ideally look something like this:
-Potion + Pyroblast
-Fireball (First Pyro Critted)
-Inferno Blast (First Fireball Critted)
-Fireball (You have 1 Pyroblast and a Heating Up proc present while casting this)
--Use Alter Time macro
--Spam Pyroblast instants until you run out (remember to use the PoM Pyroblast)
--Cancel Alter Time early
--Spam Pyroblast instants
--While your PoM Pyroblast is in the air, you should cast Combustion (if you got decent crits you should have a very high ignite).
In general gameplay when you have a Pyroblast proc, you shouldn't use it instantly, instead you should wait until you also get a Heating Up proc, and launch a Fireball with an Instant Pyroblast at the same time, this will increase the chance of gaining another Pyroblast due to the Heating Up buff's grace time.
Note that the Pyroblast DoT is a large source of damage, and you should cleave it to other mobs where possible or use instant Pyros if it isn't possible to cleave.
Information is key for fire mage, you should be at least tracking your current Ignite value, Mage Bomb as well as buffs/debuffs and procs.
CombustionHelper - A great addon for Mages that tracks everything you need to know, Mage Bomb, Ignite, Pyroblast and even estimated Combustion ticks.
TellMeWhen - A simple and easy to use addon that you can use to track your level 90 ability as well as other cooldowns/buffs/debuffs.
My UI Screenshot
My TellMeWhen Profile
My Addon List (5.4)
My CombustionHelper (Ignite Only)
/cast Presence of Mind
/cast Alter Time
#showtooltip Ice Block
/cancelaura Ice Block
/cast Ice Block
Immerseus Kill 3:
The Fallen Protectors Kill 3:
Norushen Kill 3:
Sha of Pride Kill 1:
Galakras Kill 3:
Iron Juggernaut Kill 1:
Kor'kron Dark Shaman Kill 1:
General Nazgrim Kill 1:
Malkorok Kill 4:
Spoils of Pandaria Kill 2:
Thok the Bloodthirsty Kill 3:
Siegecrafter Blackfuse Kill 3:
Paragons of the Klaxxi Kill 3:
Garrosh Hellscream Kill 4:
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