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Thread: [PvP] Offensive Mage Souls 101: Warlock is not a mobility soul.

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    Default [PvP] Offensive Mage Souls 101: Warlock is not a mobility soul.

    Rather than raging on other people's threads I figure I'd make a hopefully constructive one following the Chloromancerthread.

    We've got 8 Souls for PvP that roughly act as follows.

    Warlock (Offensive)
    Pyromancer (Offensive)
    Stormcaller (Offensive)
    Necromancer (Pet)
    Elementalist (Pet)
    Dominator (Support)
    Archon (Support)
    Chloromancer (Healer)

    This is about those offensive souls. As of patch 1.4 and a half, Mages are in a pretty good spot PvP balance-wise. It's my opinion all three of our offensive souls are fully capable, (I've played with pretty much everything)

    Being a good PvP mage is about not just big hitting damage combinations, but also about how you react and plan to counteract that Warrior who wants to rip off your face and the Rogue stabbing you in the back. Battlefield awareness is the best defense, and then you employ your soul's toolbox and defensive strengths.

    Assuming pure 51 builds with 15 Archmage;

    The Stormcaller is primarily a movement speed kite build, it's about slowing them down and speeding you up, and maintaining distance between it and melee. Because pure mobility is the most powerful battlefield tool, it doesn't have much else bar a few damage reduction abilities, Icy Vortex and Stormguard. Instants are important for mobility builds and Cloudburst on a debuffed enemy is the best instant nuke in the calling. If the opposition doesn't keep a Stormcaller kiting and on the defensive, it can punish them with the highest damage output.

    The Pyromancer is window kite build. The centerpoint of it's tree is a hard hitting nuke with the downside of a long cast time. It's abilities and defence's are all about creating a window to employ a few fireballs, if you can get them off, it has enough instant abilities to finish the job. Good duration disarm, stun, unbreakable root, low cooldown teleport and a mass snare all feed into this theme of window kiting. It also has a couple of absorb shields for defence, good use of absorb shields after taking damage keeps you above death long enough for heals to come in. Pyro has a lot of instants, Flame Bolt, Countdown, Inferno, and Cinderburst, but they're proc/conditional/cooldown based, they're designed to work in conjunction with Fireball nukes, on their own combined they are weak.

    The Warlock is not a kite build in the way that Pyromancer and Stormcaller are. It has no 'Flicker' or 'Ride the Wind' movement booster. It has very few instants on short cooldowns. It's one single target snare needs to be cast. It's trades off mobility for increased Health and defense through healing mitigation. They have more health, get healed when hit, have two very strong defensive cooldowns, and can regen health through Mortality and Reconstruct. Their best effective damage comes from stationary abilities Void Bolt and Devouring Shadows. Warlock playstyle is cast a couple of instants while positioning, then stand and deliver. This makes it a pretty effective pick up and play class for beginners who are less able at the kiting game, but no less dangerous in the hands of a skilled player.

    When hybridising builds the most effective one's I've played supplement the playstyle of the core offensive souls. For example

    Warlock/Necro drops burst damage and focuses more on DoT and self healing damage.

    Pyromancer/Archon adds two more fire instants, another strong absorb shield and Hastened Withdrawl which stacks well with all the shields and adds a fair amount of movement kiting ability at the expense of some of the window kiting skills like Burning Bonds and Lockdown.

    Stormcaller/Dominator
    Trades off damage for more control abilities that help it's kiting playstyle like instant squirrel, storm shackle, and split personality.

    Generally the hybrid specs as a rule trade pure damage for more options or a slight change to playstyle. Hybrids can be good for lower ranks where you need to pull out all the stops to survive. Pure specs are often best for higher rank players as they convert their high spell power at a good ratio into some crazy powerful attacks and their valor makes up for defensive shortcomings.

    The highest pure burst damage output possible is through 51 Stormcaller. The lowest DD offensive combo is the Necro/Warlock hybrid*. Bear in mind you do zero offence when dead, so my advice to any mage would be to play around with the trees and identify which playstyle suits your abilities best.

    *Technically Warlock/Chloro, but it's more akin to a tank spec without the warrior utility, not an offensive spec and suffers from the shortfall most tanky builds have in PvP, in that you can't force good players to attack you instead of someone else.

  2. #2
    Ascendant Soul sky's Avatar
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    The highest pure burst damage output possible is through 51 Stormcaller.
    No, it's 44sc 18 archmage (overload+nenvin's lament)+ 4 elemenalist(more crits=better burst)


    100% chance to crit a 4000+(with electrified+ice shear) on 1000 valor macro:

    #show Arctic blast
    suppressmacrofailures
    cast absolute zero
    cast nenvin's lament
    cast absolute zero

    I don't like eye of the storm because it needs charge. It's best used with hailstorm+lightning storm. Hailstorm+lightning storm should be at the start of your AoE attacks, and thus you're unlikely to have charge :S The charge gained from lightning storm is best used on static flux+arctic blast or staticflux+lightning fieldx2. Seems kind of nooby to me to save up a heap of charge just so you can stack Eye of the storm. The 20% damage from static flux most probably outweighs charge used on eye of the storm in both burst and damage. Just my opinion though.

    PLUS I'm already using charge on storm guard, ride the wind, static flux; sometimes all three at once for just a few crucial moments at extremely low charge. I don't want another charge dump which reduces my go-to survivability options.

    Unless you think 7 points into stormcaller just for the additional water damage is worthwhile.. probably not. Hastened withdrawal+nenvins lament+elementalist crit looks better.
    Last edited by Soul sky; 08-28-2011 at 08:39 PM.
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    Telaran
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soul sky View Post
    No, it's 44sc 18 archmage (overload+nenvin's lament)+ 4 elemenalist(more crits=better burst)


    100% chance to crit a 4000+(with electrified+ice shear) on 1000 valor macro:

    #show Arctic blast
    suppressmacrofailures
    cast absolute zero
    cast nenvin's lament
    cast absolute zero

    I don't like eye of the storm because it needs charge. It's best used with hailstorm+lightning storm. Hailstorm+lightning storm should be at the start of your AoE attacks, and thus you're unlikely to have charge :S The charge gained from lightning storm is best used on static flux+arctic blast or staticflux+lightning fieldx2. Seems kind of nooby to me to save up a heap of charge just so you can stack Eye of the storm. The 20% damage from static flux most probably outweighs charge used on eye of the storm in both burst and damage. Just my opinion though.

    PLUS I'm already using charge on storm guard, ride the wind, static flux; sometimes all three at once for just a few crucial moments at extremely low charge. I don't want another charge dump which reduces my go-to survivability options.

    Unless you think 7 points into stormcaller just for the additional water damage is worthwhile.. probably not. Hastened withdrawal+nenvins lament+elementalist crit looks better.
    Is that 2nd absolute zero in there supposed to be arctic blast? Ive had some issues putting the 2 together in a single macro; for some reason absolute zero simply doesnt cast when I do that.

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    I prefer 7% extra water damage over 4% ele crit. Nevins is pretty pointless because Building Storm guarantees higher damage crits on AB and the entire AoE channel.

    Hastened Withdrawl is great, you can drop 3% damage and EoTS for it, but I've gotten used to playing 51 without it. EoTS isn't a go to move, Hailstorm+Lightning Storm are, but you can build up a bit of charge on a raid following standard AB+ FL+LF spam and you only need two ticks of EoTS to wipe a stack, it's usually off cooldown when such a situation comes up.

    Plus a couple of awesome people have been playing full Verse of Joy Bard for Defiant in my cluster. Fantastic combo with Stormcaller.

    I agree juggling charge is tough and the hardest part of the soul.

  5. #5
    Ascendant Menaace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soul sky View Post
    No, it's 44sc 18 archmage (overload+nenvin's lament)+ 4 elemenalist(more crits=better burst)


    100% chance to crit a 4000+(with electrified+ice shear) on 1000 valor macro:

    #show Arctic blast
    suppressmacrofailures
    cast absolute zero
    cast nenvin's lament
    cast absolute zero

    I don't like eye of the storm because it needs charge. It's best used with hailstorm+lightning storm. Hailstorm+lightning storm should be at the start of your AoE attacks, and thus you're unlikely to have charge :S The charge gained from lightning storm is best used on static flux+arctic blast or staticflux+lightning fieldx2. Seems kind of nooby to me to save up a heap of charge just so you can stack Eye of the storm. The 20% damage from static flux most probably outweighs charge used on eye of the storm in both burst and damage. Just my opinion though.

    PLUS I'm already using charge on storm guard, ride the wind, static flux; sometimes all three at once for just a few crucial moments at extremely low charge. I don't want another charge dump which reduces my go-to survivability options.

    Unless you think 7 points into stormcaller just for the additional water damage is worthwhile.. probably not. Hastened withdrawal+nenvins lament+elementalist crit looks better.
    No: it's 31 SC / 31 Dom / 4 Am

    You can do what you do once every 3 minutes. It's like a pyro bragging about what he can do with Heat Wave on.

    The spec I referenced with the air bonuses beefing up a storm shackle, almost doubles anything a building storm arctic blast, or a lolburst can do. If you get three back to back crit's you triple it, and that's every 30 seconds. As in 3 electrifieds + ice sheer to prep, and then a silly person running with storm shackle is the highest single target one spell burst in the game (adding up all three micro bursts)
    Last edited by Menaace; 08-29-2011 at 10:38 AM.
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  6. #6
    Champion of Telara Hethroin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Menaace View Post
    No: it's 31 SC / 31 Dom / 4 Am

    You can do what you do once every 3 minutes. It's like a pyro bragging about what he can do with Heat Wave on.

    The spec I referenced with the air bonuses beefing up a storm shackle, almost doubles anything a building storm arctic blast, or a lolburst can do. If you get three back to back crit's you triple it, and that's every 30 seconds. As in 3 electrifieds + ice sheer to prep, and then a silly person running with storm shackle is the highest single target one spell burst in the game (adding up all three micro bursts)
    I don't think you can count on people running with shackle, and I highly recommend that you test out Split Personality with Static Discharge before deciding that 31 SC is all you need.
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  7. #7
    Ascendant Menaace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hethroin View Post
    I don't think you can count on people running with shackle, and I highly recommend that you test out Split Personality with Static Discharge before deciding that 31 SC is all you need.
    It's a moot argument. On that same note, your spirits can be purged which again is conditional to the battlefield and competence of your opponent... the conditionals make them logical equals again, thus the damage can be compared:

    SP + Static Discharge meaning all three bolts at once + the discharge damage being one "burst" is great but still not higher than what I said. I have tested it. Not to mention, yours is 2-min CD versus my 30 second one that all things being equal gives me more dps in a wf setting or a RvR setting (sustainable fights). What you said is great for a 1v1 spec for your 2-min Cd to be an autowin I guess if who you use it on is has a little herp in his step
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hethroin View Post
    I don't think you can count on people running with shackle, and I highly recommend that you test out Split Personality with Static Discharge before deciding that 31 SC is all you need.
    Also, I've tested 31/31/4 against 32/31/3... and in PvP RvR 2-minute sustainable DPS, you are higher DPS with the 3% spell damage than you are with the Static Discharge (assuming the target is 3-elec + IS since SD is air dmg)
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    So someone said we were talking about offensive mage specs...
    Last edited by Bleeds; 08-29-2011 at 12:31 PM.

  10. #10
    Telaran
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    51 Dom is not a support spec.

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