What’s the best way to breathe new life into a game that’s going a bit stagnant at the moment? Why, do exactly the same thing as you’re doing now on a SHINY NEW CHARACTER!
Say hello to Huomofa the Fire Mage!
I know, a MAGE, fancy that. I’m playing a class some loser once described as the second worst in World of Warcraft. Thing is, I had never played as Fire before. Frost and Arcane bored the junk out of me, and I could never be bothered to respec to Fire to try it out, so my other Mage sits at level 90 on my old server.
Fire as a spec is often compared to the Warlock spec Destruction, probably because on the face of it “they both throw fire around so it must be the same right?” which is kinda like saying “Frost Mages and Frost Death Knights are the same because brr cold?” really. There are superficial similarities. They both like Crit and Mastery, albeit for different reasons and in a different order. They both indeed throw fire around. They’re both incredibly fun.
But while Destruction is all about building up resources then spending them all when you get powerful buffs, Fire is about fishing for critical hits so you can power up and insta-cast your nuke. While Destruction has a trivial DoT in Immolate, Fire has SEVERAL important ones in Pyroblast (which procs from Pyroblast, believe it or not), Ignite (which procs from most fire damage you deal), Combustion (which is based on how high your Ignite is when you cast it) and potentially Living Bomb (a talent). Destruction has a major DPS cooldown and an execute, Fire has… neither (unless you take Mirror Images I suppose?).
I picked Fire to play as because I figured it’d be similar to Destruction, my main’s main spec. I continue playing it because, le gasp, I was wrong and I’m so glad of that. I leveled her to 60, then I boosted her because a) I got paid and this is a way of treating myself, and b) PROFESSION BOOSTS YEAH.
You know it’s really difficult to play Fire in low level dungeons? Not because it’s a tough spec, or because of the low crit levels, but because by the time I’ve got a Fireball cast off, everything’s dead. Boss damage I excelled at, but trash? Might as well let everyone else deal with it. They also have that ol’ turret issue that Destruction faces, but this is mitigated slightly by the Ice Floes talent. Not that I took it. I like Evanesce. It makes me purple.
Playing a Mage makes you play a bit clever too. Sure, Fire is capable of melting some serious face if the RNG favours you, but when the crits stop flowing and there’s enemies beating you in the face, you don’t have plate armour or a pet to take the heat off of you, so you need to react accordingly. Prepare for a fight by Polymorphing extra enemies, or laying down a Ring of Frost. Make sure your Frost Nova and Blink spells are in easy reach. Dragon’s Breath acts as a nice pseudo-interrupt as it has a 4 second disorient effect, and your Counterspell locks enemies for 6 seconds with a successful interrupt! Evanesce allows you to avoid everything for 3 seconds, and when the shit REALLY hits the fan, Greater Invisibility will drop all threat, make enemies unable to target you, reset everything and allow you to retreat, heal up and try again.
All in all, I am really enjoying this character! She’s really thrown my Legion plans into disarray though. I had originally intended to focus on just 3 characters, one for each role (Destro Warlock, Brewmaster Monk, Holy Paladin), but now I wanna throw Huomofa as a fourth in there too. I have zero interest in Frost or Arcane, so I don’t have to worry about the offspec blues either, whereas I know with my Warlock and Monk, I want to play Demonology and Windwalker alongside their main specs.
Legion’s gonna be a busy time. Better go prepare, I guess?
*insert Illidan joke here*