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World of Warcraft Beginner PVP Guide – Mage

by: Finn Orfano ; edited by: Michael Hartman ; updated: 4/18/2012 • Leave a comment

Player versus player encounters can be difficult and unforgiving for new players, and many times other players will take no time to explain or help. This guide will help the newbie Mage with PVP Specs and strategies.

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    Mages are a powerful PVP (Player versus Player) class with many PVP oriented abilities. They are able to hold their own with all other classes and can adapt to almost any situation. Having the proper talent point spec has a great bearing on a Mages ability to battle other classes in PVP.

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    Specs

    Mages have several potential PVP specs, and each one is better at a certain situation than others. Arcane specs, oriented around using Arcane Power, Presence of Mind and Pyroblast, in that order. This is what is called a “Three Minute Mage”. This is because after executing this strategy, the Mage must wait three minutes before all the cooldowns are reset and they are able to do it again. The Mage is very vulnerable during this time, with none of the powerful defensive abilities of Frost mages and no notable damage abilities to use.

    Fire Specs are most useful when the Mage is doing a lot of Battlegrounds. Mages let melee oriented classes to distract players, while the Mage sits back and casts powerful Fire damage spells. Important talents to invest in are Ignite, Impact, Pyroblast, Combustion, Blastwave and Dragon’s Breath.

    Frost Mages are perhaps the most versatile Mages. With powerful defensive and damage abilities, Frost Mages are efficient and excel in kiting enemies, especially Rogues and Warriors. Some required talents are Shatter, Ice Shards, Frostbite, Cold Snap, Ice Barrier and Summon: Water Elemental. Keeping enemies frozen is vital to the success of Frost Mages, as Shatter increases critical strike chance by fifty percent.

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    Duels

    When dueling, the first thing that Mages of any spec will want to accomplish is Polymorphing the enemy. This allows the Mage to start the battle just as they choose and get a powerful advantage on the enemy. The Improved Counterspell talent causes a two second silence effect added to the Counterspell ability. This gives enough time for Mages to Polymorph caster classes without them being able to fight back.

    For Arcane Specs, Presence of Mind can be used to instantly Polymorph the target, which is useful against Warriors and other melee classes. Once Polymorphed, Fire and Arcane spec Mages can cast Pyroblast, followed by a Presence of Mind Pyroblast. If these are critical strikes, almost any enemy can be defeated before they can fight back.

    Frost Mages are able to start kiting on their own terms with several Frostbolts, slowing enemies. When finally the enemy is close enough to start attacking, Frost Nova can be used and the Mage can start casting Frostbolt again. When fighting Caster classes, Ice Barrier should always be active, as well as Fire Ward and Frost Ward when they apply. If fighting a Warlock or Shadow Priest, once a large number of DoT (Damage over Time) spells have been cast, Ice Block should be used to break these. Instant cast spells should be used to extremes to defeat them before their DoT’s can take full effect.

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    World PVP

    Mages in World PVP should always be sure to know what they’re up against before attacking any enemies. Mages should make sure their level is at or higher than anyone they attack. Resists are very possible against higher level characters and can turn the tide of battle. If the opportunity presents itself, start with Polymorph. This will cause them to use up anything they have to dispel it. Always wait a few seconds to see if they will break it. If they do, simply recast the spell, and begin using the chosen Specs powerful spells.

    Mages when attacked first in World PVP are, like others, at an immediate disadvantage. Ice Block allows Mages to get a fresh start in any battle, and should be used before the enemy can gain too much of an advantage. At that point, the Mage can resume the battle as if in a duel, though Cold Snap should be used shortly thereafter if applicable to regain Ice Block.

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    Battlegrounds

    Frost Mages in Warsong Gulch can be very capable Flag Runners. Ice Barrier, Mana Shield and either Frost or Fire Ward should be active as much as possible when running the flag. Blink should be used, especially when no enemies are in immediate pursuit. If enemies start to gain, save Blink for impending Stun and movement restricting effects. If becoming overrun, Ice Block can be used, though it is very risky and should only be used in emergency situations because the Flag is dropped as soon as cast. The Mage should break Ice Block as soon as possible and immediately begin right-clicking the Flag to pick it back up and resume the run.

    Arathi Basin and Alterac Valley are a slightly different story, and Mages are best served standing behind melee classes where the fighting is thickest and dealing as much damage as possible. Polymorph should be used liberally to limit the number of enemies rushing or defending nodes. In Alterac Valley, Mages are able to solo flags with AoE (Area of Effect) and instant cast spells. No cooldowns should be conserved though, as the NPCs (Non-Player Characters) that guard the flags have very damaging attacks. Frost Nova and standing just out of range of melee attacks while using spells like Arcane Explosion, Blastwave and Cone of Cold to deal damage will make short work of them.