Diminishing returns on Fireball

I feel like this is something that should have been discussed a while ago, Mage is a very very versatile class and should be used to its entire ability rather then be limited to some of the best mages only having to spam and learn 2 spells. There are currently 2 types of mages in the game rotational mages and fireball spammers. Mage is classified as advanced class and should not be limited towards only spamming fireball and an occasional affliction if they feel like it would help. The fix to this in my eyes would be diminishing returns maybe its not the best fix and sure I could jump along the bandwagon train and just learn a different shortcut method. But It doesn’t seem fair that rotational mages need to master multiple spells in order to be classified good with good damage, whilst non-rotation mages are able to spam occasionally spam 2 spells and do great damage.


The issue isn’t necessarily fireball spam. It’s the runemage talent tree & weak spells like fireball 3/icelance, imo. Frost sucks. Arcane sucks (except when there’s a ton of enemies, even then single target is often a good choice). Fireball 3 sucks. Pushback damage sucks. Affliction’s are shared. There’s no reason to cast anything else, and they would still suck even if you made fireball suck.

If anything why not have diminishing returns on these other spells that are not the bread and butter for mages? Why can’t fireball 3 give you a self-damage boost similar to tiles that is actually worth casting periodically? Or a big DoT like affliction. Why can’t pushback actually hit really hard like every 15 seconds? Ice lance is short range, requires the target to be frosted, and has a delay… (yes it pierces) why does it do so little damage? Why can’t frost 3 aoe frost to make ice lance more viable + a ice lance damage boost? Why is arcane ray actually pathetic and it’s hitbox isn’t even right for players with adjusted weapon positions (as is for ice lance…). Why can’t decurse heal like 15% of a target’s HP every 10 seconds? Why doesn’t mana shield last for like 20-30 minutes and provide a regenerating shield that begins to recover after not being hit for X seconds? And so-on, these are just completely random examples. The mage could be so much more interesting, yes. It’s actually an incredibly simple class, the system behind it as well. It’s just difficult to do.

The class is advanced because it’s difficult to learn & use it compared to other classes, not because it has complex rotations. It also has utility spells in it’s kit that you often need to be able to use basically every time without popping your spell. Giving fireball diminishing returns at this point is going to be triplicity 2.0 for the playerbase. From my last raid the rangers outperformed every mage in DPS by about 10k (my arm was dead tired that week and yes a mage could outperform a ranger). But still there were above average mages in the group.

Triplicity and true affliction were effectively removed from the game as well so that is one or a few less thing mages need to do in combat.

The eye needs to be turned to the useless talents and spells, not beat on fireball. Ideally, they’d spice up our boring items (like frost, fire, arcane wands & cooler affixes on armor/weapons) but I doubt we’ll see such a jump in excitement lol. I’m all for casting different spells if we were incentivized in a good way to cast spells like arcane ray if they were suddenly not garbage.

Fireball spamming, particularly if you draw small ( I advise you do not ) is also asking for carpal tunnel. Runemages should have had mana or multiple mana pools, but Riley probably did not predict how quickly mages would cast. The current simplicity of the mage spells/talents also prevents any kind of interesting mana system that I can quickly think up.

I’m not sure what you mean here. Rotational mages who cast affliction/frost do significantly more damage than those who only cast fireball.

If you can not cast affliction consistently, but you attempt it in your rotation, you will have a significant DPS loss compared to just fireballing.


Lol, Ice lance was the old fireball 2. One person frosted, and the rest of the group just did icelance. Some guilds did this on bosses, could oneshot in Pvp, and was rather nasty.

So the gods came down from the sky (oh Lord Riley) and nerfed it into the ground

I’m feeling this right about now I’m taking a month break from mage because my wirst

I agree that they need to look at the talents.

Lend a hand vs static shock
These are purely personal preference on all but 2 bosses; Gorgon with lend a hand you can constantly DPS where as sewer slime you can continue to damage while holding boss agro easier without it.

Purely personal preference.

Shared vs Selfish
There is no reason to run shared unless you have very few mages in a group; in shards if you have any more than 1 mage you are likely loosing damage.

Shared is only good in raid and only if mages are not stacked

Runic Diversity vs Runic Speed
Runic diversity is so much better than speed due to the 20% damage boost on the 3rd spell for rotation mages (always a frost). Runic speed is not necessary as you can still snipe enemies without it. Runic speed is also broken still and currently does nothing along with the strength stat.

Runic speed is not only unnecessary but broken

Affinity vs True Affliction
Before the True Affliction nerf you could make an argument for both at least on bosses. If true affliction worked the way it did in preborn these two would be pretty balanced and a good call either way as long as true affliction is not stacked. Unfortunately they crippled true affliction so much that even if its slightly viable on 7-8 mob groups (which you can only spread dots to a max of 5 enemies at a time) you are better of running affinity for the 2 weaknesses and the 15% extra damage for next spell after every fireball.

True affliction needs to be reverted or at least buffed to compete

Triplicity vs Contamination
You either lose damage because there are no good triplicity tiles or you lose damage because doing rotation mage you keep up 3 afflictions all the time.

Both would need to be completely reworked

lol, i can promise you that this is not the case, I have used tons of combat parsers comparing some of the top rotational mages to some of the best DPS mages such as kingme and bucky, however i have only done 1 dungeon with him. They completely blew the damage from rotational mages out of the water and these “rotational mages” werent bad. I also agree talents need a re work. But my overall point is they do need diminishing returns. Mage does not need a buffing, it just needs to be fixed, because spamming fireballs and occasional other spells here and there, should not be how you can reach top dps.

This entire thread proves you wrong. The theoretical best for rotation mages is around 20-40k higher than fireball spam.

Not to mention the only reason people like bucky hit those numbers is because of rotation mages. With only tiles bucky does around 80-90k dps which almost all rotation mages of a similar skill level hit higher.

Without a rotation mage like @Delceri or myself fireball spam is nowhere near as good considering when running optimal affixes a fireball spam mage would be losing 15% extra damage they get for free from rotation mages.

Lets say bucky is hitting good numbers; say 105k on gorgon (which he has done before) The only way he hit that was with full weakness (2 from mage and 1 from musky), and frost for iceheart. That already is a 20% damage boost give or take.

Bleed according to that post on mage is around a 4.8% damage boost.

Then on top of that the tilesets bucky uses are the fireball spam tilesets in that post which have an average of 25.41% damage boost

If you take away only the tilesets bucky would have done under 100k. Take away all of the other damage boosts he has and he is suddenly crippled.

The thing with it is rotation mage is much harder but has higher damage potential both solo and in groups. The reason fireball spam is seen to be the way to play mage is because of mages like bucky who hit 110k on a lot of bosses. People never stop to consider what damage boosts where nececary for him to hit those numbers.

Scott’s thread shows the max dps possible by a human with only pots and perfect tile procs. No mage weakness or iceheart for fireball spammers


I have to agree with dylan on this as i have spent almost 4k hours practicing spells and mastering them and to get the same damage as a fireball spammer seems very unfair. Yes they need boosts and a bunch of other help to acheive your so called “110k”. I dont think exact number is the point here @Richleth the point i think dylan is trying to make is that they shouldnt be near rotational mages dps while they spam 1-2 spells and i agree. As well i dont think this only applies to PVE but PvP aswell as its 4-5 fireballs to kill somebody and pvp is not really fun anymore as if the mage has distance its just a fireball as opposed to brains its kinda just spam a wall of fire and if you cant you best be a tremendously fast caster or else you lost.

I have my opinions i chose to keep quiet about fireball mages but Those fireball walls require hours and hours of practice telecasting fast enough. It does actually take skill to make one


So about dot spreading… can it be viable again? Like i really wish it did decent dps.

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Only the top fireball spam mages get to or exceed rotational mages. Solo like in scotts post rotation mage is 30-40k higher in dps. That is acceptable difference. I too wish that fireball spam was not as good as it is but I really don’t support nerfing fireball. Like delceri says all making fireball bad will do is make it bad and likely be triplicity 2.0 for most mages. Frost and all other spells kind of suck at the moment with the exception of affliction to a degree.

I am illustrating that at max performance solo rotation mages will consistently deal higher numbers.

The fireball spam mages put in a similar amount of hours to get those high numbers as well. Rotation mages require a lot more practice but have a higher theoretical limit.

so you’re either Rickness, Hosk, Scott, J or Landru and have spent almost all your time playing orbus practicing mage…nah, come with some actual numbers please. (and your forum account is only 1 week old :thinking:)


I was about to say that sounded odd… Wait pick liked the original post; its probably him…

Just wanted to jump in with some numbers. When I was gathering data to help with dps balance, these were the averages of the top mages I had helping me. The first and last mages (83k and 80k) were rotation mages, the others were fire or fire/frost.

The rotation mages consistently did more damage than the fire spam mages. This was over 25 runs so not really a one off case.

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I have 5k total bud, and my forum account is one week old, congrats! trying to play the guessing game on who I am does nothing either lol the topic is about fireball spammers not playing guess who. As well as if im being realistic, i probably have 2-2.5k hours in mage im willing to bet nobody has 4k total hours JUST in mage but with 4190 hours in the game being almost matched by people who spam 1-2 spells vs the class being a diverse class and spending those mastering 3-5 spells i dont think my dps should be within 10k of somebody spamming nothing but fire.

edit: nm everyone has said everything which needs to be said

Only thing uncommented on perhaps is that I do think mages need a “buff”, as our end-game talents and spells are totally useless, and yea it should support different playstyles more than just spamming fireball. DPS aside, something like a support mage or CC’ing frost mage imo would actually be a lot of fun if it could be viable as well.

Other classes should have talent improvements as well. The parallel two-path talent system is super basic I thought when it was added it would be expanded on, but nope lol. I don’t mind end-game content being buffed itself to counteract increasing the skill cap / damage roof.

This is just anecdotal but with just a +5 iceheart wand, unpotted I can get like ~65-70k+ DPS with just fireballs (maybe more as those #'s are from much older tests and I’ve improved alot). With afflictions I can get 70k easily and 80-100k DPS. Realistically, 80-92k but I make mistakes. That’s missing 10% damage. I am confident I could maintain 92k if I made slightly less mistakes but I’m still a nub. DPS really drops if you mess up affliction because casting it alone is a momentary DPS drop, your next spell is frost w/o runic diversity, so you suffer a x3-4 DPS loss in a short amount of time assuming you get affliction next time (as well as briefly missing out a 13.6% damage boost). I say 3-4 because I can’t remember if frost w/ runic diversity ends up being better than a fireball(I think not, but I don’t know in what order damage is calculated for it). Not to mention possibly missing affliction ticks(you’ll have 15 ticks though, not 13), messing with your head, possibly messing with tiles (that is primarily why I use 6-8 second tiles and tiles that proc mid rotation), and messing with your affliction debuff. Missing an affliction means you’ll have to cast your next affliction sooner because of affinity wearing off. I personally just wait for affliction to wear off (so 15 ticks), not affinity, because of that. I find I hit 90k+ much more often when I do that. With a good +6 90k DPS would be somewhat easy, as 80k is not that bad.

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