Arcane Mage DPS Spec, Builds, and Talents — Dragonflight 10.0.5

Last updated on Jan 24, 2023 at 14:40 by Dutchmagoz 50 comments
General Information

On this page, you will find out the best talents for each tier for your Arcane Mage in World of Warcraft — Dragonflight 10.0.5. We also have default talent lists for various types of content, such as raiding or Mythic+. If you play with Warmode on, we have your PvP talents covered as well.

If you were looking for WotLK Classic content, please refer to our WotLK Classic Arcane Mage talents.

1.

Talent Cheat Sheets for Arcane Mage

While optimizing talents on a contextual basis is the highly recommended method of setting up your build, the talent builds listed below work great for specific purposes. Keep in mind, you can freely change your talents as long as you are out of combat, without requiring any consumables, so it is highly suggested to pick talents specifically for the content you are doing.

Generally, there are two main "builds" for Arcane Mages. The Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build and the Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony build. Read our Mana Gem VS Arcane Harmony section for more information on which build to play when and why.

1.1.

Raiding / Pure Single Target

You can easily import the talent tree below into the game by using the "copy export string" button below.

1.2.

AoE with decent single target

You can easily import the talent tree below into the game by using the "copy export string" button below.

1.3.

Mythic+

Mythic+ require a mix of certain AoE and single-target talents, depending on affixes and other variables. If you want advice that is specific to Mythic+, you should check out our page below.

1.4.

How To Use Arcane Mage Talents

Multiple talents require a change to your rotation to use them optimally. You can find more information on how your rotation will look after selecting your talents on our rotation page below.

If you are looking for in-depth explanations of what each talent does, we suggest reading through the spell summary page.

2.

Mana Gem VS Arcane Harmony

There are two main Arcane Mage builds at the moment. You can switch between them by swapping between Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem, Enlightened Icon Enlightened and Prodigious Savant Icon Prodigious Savant to/from Illuminated Thoughts Icon Illuminated Thoughts, Concentration Icon Concentration and Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony.

Generally speaking, both builds are nearly identical DPS on pure single target. The difference at most is somewhere around 1%. Which one is better depends on your gear, so simming it is the only way to find out which one is better for pure single target. However, the main differences are at multiple target counts:

  • 1 Target: (Nearly)Equal DPS with both builds.
  • 2 Targets: Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony build significantly better, between 5% - 10%.
  • 3 Targets: Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build slightly better, around 2%-5%.
  • 4 Targets+: Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build significantly better, between 5% - 15% depending on the target count.

However, on top of the purely numeric differences above, there are a couple of other reasons you might want to pick each build:

  • Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build has better AoE, but Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony build has better priority damage.
  • Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build is generally considered a bit easier to play, as Mana management is significantly easier than the Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony build.
  • Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony build has more variance, as a lot of its damage comes from a very few very hard-hitting Arcane Barrage Icon Arcane Barrages, so whether or not these critically strike has a significant impact on your overall DPS. This means you can get lucky and overperform or unlucky and underperform more than the Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build.

As a final note, both builds have practically the same gearing priority, so you do not have to commit to either build and can swap based on the content you are doing.

3.

Picking Mage Class Talents

The general Mage tree is extremely flexible. It is almost entirely personal preference, apart from a couple of key DPS nodes. You have many more points available than you need to get all of the DPS nodes, leaving you with many options in terms of survivability, crowd control, and utility. Below we will highlight some of the key nodes that are important for DPS and suggest some of the best non-DPS nodes. However, even after that, you can assign a bunch of points as you see fit.

3.1.

Tier 1 (Rows 1-4) Mage Class Talents For Mage Mage

3.1.1.

Talents for all situations

Talent Reason for taking
Overflowing Energy Icon Overflowing Energy A straight up DPS boost
Rune of Power Icon Rune of Power or Incanter's Flow Icon Incanter's Flow Rune of Power Icon Rune of Power is the best theoretical DPS choice for any amount of targets. However, Incanter's Flow Icon Incanter's Flow can be close, and Rune of Power is quite restrictive, so it may not be practical for all encounters.
Ice Block Icon Ice Block One of the best defensives in the entire game.
Mirror Image Icon Mirror Image A great defensive tool useful in all content.
Alter Time Icon Alter Time A very strong defensive and mobility tool in one, useful in all content.
Tempest Barrier Icon Tempest Barrier A great defensive tool useful in all content.
3.1.2.

Optional / flexible talents

Talent Reason for taking
Spellsteal Icon Spellsteal A good pick if there are buffs you can steal that are either beneficial to you, or make the content easier by removing it from the target.
Remove Curse Icon Remove Curse A good pick if there are curses you can dispel.
Winter's Protection Icon Winter's Protection Can be useful if you need the reduced cooldown to be able to solo soak a specific raid mechanic
Remove Curse Icon Remove Curse A good pick if there are curses you can dispel.
Incantation of Swiftness Icon Incantation of Swiftness Can be useful for skipping content, like trash packs in dungeons, or open-world enemies
3.2.

Tier 2 (Rows 5-7) Mage Class Talents For Mage Mage

The tier 2 talents contain almost entirely utility/mobility talents.

3.2.1.

Talents for all situations

Talent Reason for taking
Tome of Rhonin Icon Tome of Rhonin A straight up DPS boost
Tome of Antonidas Icon Tome of Antonidas A straight up DPS boost
Shimmer Icon Shimmer or Ice Floes Icon Ice Floes Both are extremely strong mobility tools. This choice is largely a personal preference. Generally Ice Floes will be better if you expect to have to move during your Rune of Power Icon Rune of Power window, as Ice Floes will allow you to move around in your Rune without losing the buff, whereas Shimmer would force you to Shimmer out of the Rune. However, Shimmer would be better if you expect to have to move longer distance at a short notice, without giving up DPS.
Diverted Energy Icon Diverted Energy A great survivability tool useful in all content.
3.2.2.

Optional / flexible talents

Talent Reason for taking
Master of Time Icon Master of Time A decent survivability and mobility tool useful in all content.
Quick Witted Icon Quick Witted A good pickup in content where you need the reduced interrupt cooldown, like Mythic+ in a low interrupt group.
Slow Icon Slow A good pickup to assist in kiting, especially when solo. Generally not too much usage in group content though.
Cryo-Freeze Icon Cryo-Freeze A very good self-healing tool when playing solo, limited use in group content as you are unlikely to sit in Ice Block for long
Reduplication Icon Reduplication asdasd
Reduplication Icon Reduplication Can be useful if it would give you an additional usage of Mirror Image for a specific high-hitting ability, but usually hard to proc this.
Reabsorption Icon Reabsorption Adds a relatively useful self-heal onto Mirror Image, but usually hard to proc this.
Blast Wave Icon Blast Wave Great crowd control that can be extremely useful in Mythic+ and open-world content, for its ability to AoE, interrupt enemy spellcasts
Volatile Detonation Icon Volatile Detonation Used to further increase the ability to kite with Blast Wave Icon Blast Wave, but should be careful in grouped content to not knock enemies into additional enemies and pull more than planned.
Mass Slow Icon Mass Slow Can be used to kite packs of mobs in Mythic+ in some cases, or good for open-world content.
Ice Nova Icon Ice Nova For even more crowd control
Ring of Frost Icon Ring of Frost For even more crowd control.
3.3.

Tier 3 (Rows 8-10) Mage Class Talents For Mage Mage

In this tier, we unlock some of the strong final nodes as a priority, whereas the rest is flexible.

3.3.1.

Talents for all situations

Talent Reason for taking
Time Anomaly Icon Time Anomaly / Temporal Warp Icon Temporal Warp The strongest of the final nodes. Keep in mind, Temporal Warp is good even if you are the only Time Warp (or similar effects) provider in the group, as Time Warp will not go on cooldown the first time you cast it, so you can cast it twice. Due to this, any content you would use Time Warp relatively close to on cooldown, we suggest going Temporal Warp. If you use Time Warp late into a fight, you should take Time Anomaly instead.
Shifting Power Icon Shifting Power A straight-up DPS boost, stronger than Meteor Icon Meteor.
Greater Invisibility Icon Greater Invisibility One of the best defensive tools in the game.
Flow of Time Icon Flow of Time Mandatory to get to the final nodes, but also a pretty strong mobility tool in its own right.
3.3.2.

Optional / flexible talents

Talent Reason for taking
Dragon's Breath Icon Dragon's Breath A very good crowd-control ability, especially useful in Mythic+ to interrupt spell casts.
Accumulative Shielding Icon Accumulative Shielding A minor boost to your survivability that works in all content.
Displacement Icon Displacement A decent mobility tool. Worth picking up if you already took Accumulative Shielding Icon Accumulative Shielding.
Temporal Velocity Icon Temporal Velocity A decent mobility tool. Not that great of a talent on its own, but it is on the path to Dragon's Breath so nice to pick up as a benefit of going for Dragon's Breath.
Frigid Winds Icon Frigid Winds + Ice Ward Icon Ice Ward These nodes give you even more kiting power. Not very useful in most group content, but strong when solo, and on the way to Shifting Power Icon Shifting Power anyway.
Time Manipulation Icon Time Manipulation Can be useful if you are doing content where you need the extra crowd control. Not worth taking instead of Dragon's Breath, so usually only worth taking if you are skipping one of the final talents in the tree.
4.

Mage Mage Talents

In this section, we will go over the Mage Mage Talents. The focus of this section will be PvE content.

4.1.

Tier 1 (Rows 1-4) Mage Mage Talents

This section sets up a lot of the core components of the spec. You will take almost every single talent in this section of the tree, with very little flexibility.

4.1.1.

Talents for all situations

You always take all talents in this section, apart from Improved Arcane Missiles Icon Improved Arcane Missiles.

4.1.2.

Optional / flexible talents

Put one point in Improved Arcane Missiles Icon Improved Arcane Missiles for more single-target DPS. For AoE & cleave scenarios, like Mythic+, you should skip it.

4.2.

Tier 2 (Rows 5-7) Mage Mage Talents

4.2.1.

Talents for all situations

Talent Reason for taking
Arcane Power Icon Arcane Power Very large DPS boost.
Presence of Mind Icon Presence of Mind Reasonable DPS boost, but also good for mobility. However, the primary reason is to unlock Evocation Icon Evocation in the next tier.
Amplification Icon Amplification Very large single-target DPS boost. Technically can be skipped on pure AoE, but this does not exist, and as long as there is any priority damage needed at any point, this talent is mandatory.
Resonance Icon Resonance Strong DPS boost in all situations.
Touch of the Magi Icon Touch of the Magi Very strong DPS boost.
Nether Tempest Icon Nether Tempest Strong DPS boost. Primarily taken because every hit procs 2 ticks of Arcane Echo Icon Arcane Echo.
Improved Clearcasting Icon Improved Clearcasting Strong DPS boost, but also allows you to save Clearcasting Icon Clearcasting for priority targets, or movement. (together with Slipstream Icon Slipstream)
Improved Clearcasting Icon Improved Clearcasting Strong DPS boost, but also allows you to save Clearcasting Icon Clearcasting for priority targets, or movement. (together with Slipstream Icon Slipstream)
Arcane Familiar Icon Arcane Familiar Decently strong DPS boost for both single target and AoE.
4.2.2.

Optional / flexible talents

Talent Reason for taking
Slipstream Icon Slipstream Very strong mobility tool. Can be skipped for more DPS talents, but generally, we recommend picking it due to its incredible quality of life.
Impetus Icon Impetus Good for single target / cleave.
Charged Orb Icon Charged Orb Good for cleave/AoE.
Arcing Cleave Icon Arcing Cleave Good for cleave/AoE.
Foresight Icon Foresight Very strong mobility tool, but kind of awkward position in the tree, making it hard to pick up without giving up too much DPS. Not as useful in AoE content as you will mostly be using instants in AoE, but the only path to get it is via the AoE talent Charged Orb Icon Charged Orb.
Supernova Icon Supernova Decent crowd control, especially when used as an AoE interrupt. However, very difficult to reach talent because it requires picking up multiple very low-value talents.
4.3.

Tier 3 (Rows 8-10) Mage Mage Talents

The final section of the tree has two possible paths you can go, either the Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony build or the Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build. For a more in-depth description on why to go each build, read our Mana Gem VS Arcane Harmony section.

4.3.1.

Talents For All Situations

Below we list the talents you should always take, regardless of whether you go Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony or Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem build.

Talent Reason for taking
Evocation Icon Evocation Very strong DPS boost.
Siphon Storm Icon Siphon Storm Very strong DPS boost.
Arcane Bombardment Icon Arcane Bombardment Very strong DPS boost.
Arcane Echo Icon Arcane Echo Very strong DPS boost.
Radiant Spark Icon Radiant Spark Very strong DPS boost.
Harmonic Echo Icon Harmonic Echo Very strong DPS boost.
4.3.2.

Optional / flexible talents

Talent Reason for taking
Mana Gem Icon Mana Gem, Enlightened Icon Enlightened and Prodigious Savant Icon Prodigious Savant Get this when going the Mana Gem build.
Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony and the nodes to learn it (Illuminated Thoughts Icon Illuminated Thoughts, Concentration Icon Concentration and Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony) Get this if going the Arcane Harmony Icon Arcane Harmony build.
5.

PvP Talents (War Mode)

Since Battle for Azeroth, there is the option to enable "War Mode". Enabling War Mode grants the following benefits:

  • PvP talents enabled in the outdoor world.
  • 10% increase in World Quest rewards at max level.
  • 10% more experience gained while leveling.
  • Earn Conquest Points which can reward gear every week.

With the benefits of enabling War Mode for leveling and PvE content, it is recommended enabling the feature to maximize your leveling and rewards at max level. However, doing so will enable PvP combat and the possibility of being attacked by members of the opposite faction while leveling or doing World Quests exists.

5.1.

Arcane Mage War Mode Talents

In this section we will rank the War Mode talents for leveling and outdoor content.

  1. Temporal Shield Icon Temporal Shield is off the Global Cooldown, so it can be used without sacrificing any damage, and is very strong for when you know damage is incoming. You can simply tank the damage and heal back to full Health when the shield ends.
  2. Master of Escape Icon Master of Escape allows you to use Greater Invisibility Icon Greater Invisibility very often. This can be very useful for quests that require you to pick up certain items, as Greater Invisibility allows you to drop combat and quickly mount up after looting the required item, without having to kill off any enemies you have aggroed while getting to the item.
  3. Mass Invisibility Icon Mass Invisibility is good for the same reasons as Master of Escape is.
6.

Changelog

  • 24 Jan. 2023: Reviewed for Patch 10.0.5.
  • 16 Jan. 2022: Added information about the mana gem build and when to pick Harmony or Mana gem builds.
  • 11 Dec. 2022: Minor change to the suggested talent trees to split them more into raiding vs dungeons instead of single target vs aoe.
  • 30 Nov. 2022: Updated Temporal Warp vs Time Anomaly description to be more informative.
  • 28 Nov. 2022: Updated for Dragonflight launch.
  • 24 Oct. 2022: Updated for Dragonflight pre-patch.
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