Blizzard posted a preview of planned changes for the Mage class and Arcane talent trees coming in this week’s Dragonflight Alpha build.
Hello Mages! In this week’s Alpha update, there will be a number of updates to both the Core and Spec trees for the Mage Class. We’d like to talk a bit about our design directions for this iteration and the improvements we’re looking to make. Core Tree The Core tree is seeing the heaviest redesign. Our goal has been to increase options by adding new spells, reducing overall multi-point nodes, cutting all existing 3-point nodes, and improve pathing. Several choice nodes have been split into standalone nodes to increase utility options. We’ve also been looking to reduce the number of nodes that may feel required. Cone of Cold will be moving baseline to improve the base kit and remove dependency issues. Here are some examples of spells you can expect to see: Reflection – Teleports you back to where you last Blinked. Only usable within 8 seconds of Blinking, 45 second cooldown. Volatile Detonation – Greatly increases the effect of Blast Wave’s knockback. Blast Wave’s cooldown is reduced by 5 seconds. Time Manipulation – Casting Fire Blast/Ice Lance on Frozen targets/Arcane Missiles reduces the cooldown of your loss of control abilities by 1/2 seconds. Energized Barriers – When your barrier receives melee attacks, you have a 10% chance to be granted 1 Fire Blast/1 Fingers of Frost/1 Clearcasting charge. Casting your barrier removes all snare effects. Some of this work is ongoing, and you can expect to see a couple of nodes marked NYI (Not Yet Implemented) for now. Fire Tree We felt the pathing in this tree has not allowed for enough exploration due to nodes that feel required. We’re looking to reduce the number of “mandatory” points by moving a few spells baseline, such as Hot Streak and Fire Blast Rank 2, and providing more options below gate 1 and 2. Phoenix Flames will also be moving up to above gate 1. Frost Tree A good amount of feedback for this tree has been related to the Icy Veins nodes and how required they feel, which is leading to little choice in the bottom third of the tree. We’re looking to allow for backtracking and additional choice. To help accomplish this, we’re making all 3 point nodes into 2 point nodes and reducing the point count of the Icy Veins related nodes below gate 2. Additionally, Winter’s Chill functionality will now be baseline when Flurry is learned to allow for more point flexibility. Arcane Tree The Arcane tree has been updated and will have quite a bit of re-organization of talents to better open up options as you navigate through the tree as well as make a few talents that felt previously inaccessible a little easier to access. Cooldowns on some abilities have also been adjusted to better flow with Arcane’s 45/90-second windows. Below is a highlight of some of the changes you can expect in the next alpha build. Arcane Bombardment – Reduced to max 1 rank, down from 2. Arcane Echo – Reduced to max 1 rank, down from 2. Arcane Surge – Now grants a burst of mana on cast so that the player can immediately start casting Arcane Blast Arcane Orb – Moved up the tree. It’s now available before the first gate and directly after Arcane Missiles. Rules of Threes – Now a choice node with Arcane Familiar. This choice node has swapped places with Arcane Tempo Evocation – Cooldown reduced to 90 seconds, down from 120 seconds. Improved Evocation – Cut Siphon Storm – Converted to a single node (was previously a choice node with Improved Evocation). Charged Orb – Now available after unlocking the first gate (Charged Orb grants Arcane Orb 1 additional Charge). Orb Barrage – Converted to a single node (was previously a choice node with Orb Barrage). Now also reduces the cooldown of Arcane Orb by 2 seconds when Clearcasting is consumed. Nether Tempest – Position on the tree has moved toward the center of the talent tree as a choice node with Reverberate connecting from Mana Adept and Improved Arcane Barrage. Conjure Mana Gem – Now restores 25% Mana, up from 10% Mana. Now grants 5% increased spell power for 10 seconds baseline. Cascading Power – Now grants up to 2 stacks of Clearcasting when consuming a Mana Gem (previously granted Spell Power). Enlightened – Moved lower into the tree (from Row 6 to Row 8). Resonance – Moved to Enlightened’s previous position. Presence of Mind – Cooldown reduced to 45 seconds, down from 60 seconds. Thank you for all of your testing and feedback so far. We’ll address some of the remaining tweaks and NYI spots in a future build soon after the next.