Arcane questions that I can't find the answers to...

Guides and discussions of all things specific to the Mana Adepts of Azeroth.
Aryd
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Oct 25, 2019 9:01 am

Arcane questions that I can't find the answers to...

Unread postby Aryd Fri Oct 25, 2019 9:32 am

So, I just came back to BFA after a long break, Eternal Palace is the current raid tier, and Nylotha(?) is coming very soon. I've been having a hard time finding a spec of Mage I can really get into (basically I've been bouncing between all 3 specs) and put out some pretty decent damage.

Every single article, guide, or informational video seems to be a tad out dated for Arcane. It's the spec I most enjoy about Mage, and I've been told already that Fire is the way to go, including the next patch. I can agree, and do enjoy Fire, but I'd really like to master Arcane and Fire, since Fire is pretty straight forward anyways.

I came back to the game, and realize that I was carried through some content, but worked my way up to 420, then hit about 433, and I assumed that I was doing my burn/conserves correctly.

That all being said, almost everything tells me to sim myself, so now that I've done quite a few Mythic/Mythic+ dungeons and I don't do so bad, but when I started raiding with my guild again, my damage is more than sub par. Realizing that still trying to learn mechanics on a farm raid is silly, but nonetheless hinders me, I sim at 40k DPS, but realistically, I pull less than that, abysmally less on some fights.

First, I run IF, mostly because I don't know exactly when/how RoP can or should be used in boss encounters (for example, how many I'll get in an encounter, whether I'll have to move, etc), so I stick with IF. Once I learn all that stuff, I'll swap over to RoP. I do know how to use it, but I just don't know how much more DPS I'd squeeze out it on any given encounter. (Raidbots says I'd get an extra 1.7k out of it)

Second, Azerite Traits; this one was more than confusing, as I have a very limited amount of Azerite gear to play around with, and with bouncing between the specs, I've sort of settled into what (https://www.herodamage.com/mage/azerite ... t24-arcane) tells me, and I just so happen to have the pieces for, that Arcane Pummeling x3, and Equipose x3 would yield the most damage (w/Amplification talented) but I'm reading almost everywhere else that I should be aiming for Galv Spark x2(3) and Equipose x3 and (Arcane Pummeling x1) [being that 3x GS would do better than 2x GS 1x AP) and talenting for Rule of Threes. Then I remember that most things seem to be outdated anyways, and much of this may have changed. (Edit; also noting that I'm short on essences/levels of essences, so also adding the question, which ones should I be working towards?)

Third, mana rotation, I've seen it in the threads now multiple times that there seems to be some debate about conserve phases and whether or not I should be using Evo before a burn or to recover from one. I tend to stick to the latter, as what I'll generally do in a burn is using CDs, and burning to no mana, using AM procs after AP has ended, using PoM 2 seconds before AP ends, and then Evo back up to 100% (Abarr into CU) and then try to maintain 70% mana. Is this correct, or should I be doing mini burns when possible and expending that mana to 30-50%?

Fourth, weapons. Now, keeping in mind that I do try to sim everything, I got pretty "lucky" as it were, to obtain a 440 Seabreeze. Which is nice, has lots of Stam/Int, and a Haste proc, which is kind of cool, but has absolutely no secondary stats, and I feel like secondaries are almost more important than Int. Should be trying to complete a OneH/OffH, or trying for the Staff from Azshara, lower ilvl, more stats? I don't quite understand the jist of having a massive weapon that maybe gives haste here and there, considering how much more value crit/mastery would provide, or even Vers. (Raidbots puts Vers as my second highest DPS value secondary currently)

Fifth, and hopefully finally, the extra stats. I know sockets/leech are decent tertiary stats, but all I ever seem to get is Avoidance, how much more important would sockets be compared to ilvl. Some people have told me it's about 15 ilvls, and others state that a socket can outweigh nearly 50 ilvls. I would generally lean to 15, as 50 seems outlandish, but I'm here, so I may as well ask...

Thank you for reading, and hopefully I can be helped, as I've actually enjoyed most of my time back, though grinding out Pathfinder wasn't exactly "joyful".
timmywitt
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2015 4:32 pm

Re: Arcane questions that I can't find the answers to...

Unread postby timmywitt Fri Oct 25, 2019 2:01 pm

I feel for you, Arcane is a tricky one to pick up, and it's BfA iteration isn't particularly rewarding for the effort you have to put in to extract it. Arcane is my favorite too, and thankfully my guildmates are fine with picking up my slack for not choosing the optimal spec (only heroic difficulty anyway).

- Many of the guides are old, but Arcane hasn't shifted too much since then, except the play shifts required for various essences and azerite armor effects.
- Simming yourself is absolutely the correct answer, unfortunately. Sim early, sim often. It's probably worth the subscription to RaidBots if I'm being honest, it's quite onerous.
- Since Arcane is burn-and-conserve you are absolutely correct that RoP is better than IF after you learn it. That being said, I hate RoP and unless everything lines up perfectly there is so much that can go wrong with it. I find I'm much more consistent with IF, and I think that factor is underrated. And it helps that I'm not in a mythic guild.
- The boring answer to azerite/essences is use RaidBots to find the optimal setup. That being said, I tend to use Warcraft Logs and see what the top mages are using on a given fight. This keeps the information up to date, and something to start your simulations from.
- Bloodmallet.com is also pretty useful for charts of the azerite traits, trinkets, weapons, and essences that generally sim best. Currently: Condensed Life Force, Blood of the Enemy are considered best for single target, while Condensed Life Force, Essence of the Focusing Iris, and Purification Protocol can all be competitive on hectic add cleave depending on the level of the essence. Equipoise is the best trait: fill everything with it unless your guild is doing a Loyal to the End build. Equipoise/Spark gear is available and it's usually quite good. And since I live on the edge, I like a little Treacherous Covenant to keep things interesting. Be careful to plan your mana around Equipoise (always above 70% mana unless draining down during a burn).
- Mana rotation is the key to doing great damage as arcane. There are little tricks to squeezing everything out of your arcane power window. The PoM trick is one of them, be sure to look up the timing trick to using both charges at the end of your arcane power. Don't use missiles while under arcane power. With Equipoise, stay above 70% at all times during conserve phase. Don't clip your arcane missiles. I always aim to do a full AP burn to 0% just before Evocation comes off of cooldown. You can also check out the Buffs page of a skilled mage to see how they did it (look for the Equipose buff to flip-flop to tell where the mage is on mana, and where they stack cooldowns: https://www.warcraftlogs.com/reports/9g ... &source=12 )
- Weapons. I know the answer sucks, but sim everything you get. It's just impossible to tell if a Titanforged iteration of an item is better or worse than a newer item. The sim will take the procs into account, and it can do better than a simple conversion (for example, a staff that has a haste proc might feel mediocre until that haste proc hits during your cooldowns, and then it can be incredibly powerful). To find out if an item is worth aiming for, you can find it and add it to your character for a sim, or try to find lists...but even then you can't tell if you get a good titanforge or gem slot.
- Sockets are worth quite a bit, sim them to find out how much. I really know this answer gets old, I'm so sorry.

Hope it helps! Best of luck!
Infarc
Posts: 14
Joined: Tue Jul 04, 2017 5:31 pm
Location: United States

Re: Arcane questions that I can't find the answers to...

Unread postby Infarc Fri Oct 25, 2019 8:14 pm

What the previous poster said. Also keep in mind that movement heavy fights punish arcane DPS output. With the right talents, traits and rotation, if you can turret, arcane provides consistent single target damage and insane burst. Unfortunately most of Eternal Palace involves lots of movement.

On a side note, even though fire is strong, I've found it's not the end all, be all. I've been playing frost for the past two expansions, and have had great success, usually in first or second place in raid groups, even against other similarly geared fire mages.
Stay Frosty
Aryd
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Oct 25, 2019 9:01 am

Re: Arcane questions that I can't find the answers to...

Unread postby Aryd Sat Oct 26, 2019 6:08 am

Honestly, I started out as Frost, but the timing/Icicles mechanics actually hurt my brain.... when to fire off Spike, the NoIL/Orb builds, it just got too messy too quickly. Also then reading about how positioning and specifically tank positioning mattered more than any sort of priority rotation, I started scratching my head even more, thinking that not knowing when or where a boss would be moved, Frost sort of bit the dust for me. That said, I simmed myself in my current gear, and it states that I'd do the most damage in both situations as Arcane, while Fire and Frost would both be slightly less. My concern is not being able to reach those simulated numbers despite being able to turret.

Thank you for your input though, I continue to sim, but have no idea where I'm going wrong, and our Raid seems pretty happy at the idea of having a mage for the next raid tier, so I'll keep plugging away at it.
Aryd
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Oct 25, 2019 9:01 am

Re: Arcane questions that I can't find the answers to...

Unread postby Aryd Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:29 am

I suppose I skipped a question as well, and sort backtracked my way into another question, but which essences should I be striving for? Every resource I seem to read has a different opinion on minor essences, but they all agree on the Condensed Life-Force as major, so I'm sticking with that, but some say Conflict and strife, Crucible of Flame, others say Worldvien, and Lucid Dreams... Some have even said that I should be aiming to get a rank 3 Vision of Perfection... Which is weird because it can proc AP in conserve and give a little burn, but it could also proc on the first charge of an AB while CU is on cd... It just gets so messy with all these things intertwining...
timmywitt
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Nov 25, 2015 4:32 pm

Re: Arcane questions that I can't find the answers to...

Unread postby timmywitt Sun Oct 27, 2019 3:57 pm

I use bloodmallet for all the essence comparisons, there's a tab in there that says "Essence Combinations" which sims them together.

Single Target:
Condensed Life Force + Worldvein Resonance
Condensed Life Force + Memory of Lucid Dreams
Condensed Life Force + Conflict and Strife

Add Cleave:
Condensed Life Force + Worldvein Resonance
Condensed Life Force + Purification Protocol
Condensed Life Force + Memory of Lucid Dreams

Keep in mind Worldvein Resonance requires the rest of your raid to play game, and the sim is done assuming about 3 allies are spawning lifeblood shards and you're staying within 12 yards of them...I'd stick with Memory of Lucid Dreams, which has a much more useful effect for arcane imho.

Also don't forget to sim your stat weights and use the raidbots droptimizer to find better gear. Sometimes swapping from another spec you're heavily invested in some stats that are just crap for arcane (like mastery, usually).

Best of luck!

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