Arcane Mage Shadowlands 9.2.5 guide

Patch 9.2.5 Last Updated: 7th Aug, 2022
Tamir Arcane Mage Author
s1qs Arcane Mage Author


This guide was written by Siqs and has now been updated for patch 9.1.5, 9.2, 9.2.5 and Season 4 by Tamir.

My name is Tamir, also known as Tam1h, Raiding with Angered on Ragnaros EU. I’ve been raiding competitively since Warlord of Draenor, and Pushing High Keys as a Mage since Legion.

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Strengths of the spec

  • Arcane is really strong at pure single target damage
  • Arcane does more single target if you can cleave arcane barrage
  • Arcane is really good at bursting a priority target down
  • Arcane can also absolutely melt any type of stacked cleave with CDs
  • Kit wise, arcane can shine in many areas, such as burst AoE, sustained AoE, single target and 4-5 Target cleave
  • Very durable caster, with 2 damage reductions, immunity, shield and alter time
  • Good mobility, especially if you pick Night Fae as your covenant
  • Uncapped AoE with arcane explosion
  • Two threat drops (mirror images, invisibility)
  • Greater Invisibility - Is essentially a 60% damage reduction on a 2 minutes cooldown. This is probably one of the strongest defensives in the entire game. It can be used a lot to “ cheese “ mechanics on bosses, and In Mythic+ such is Dark Exile on the last boss of Necrotic Wake. I cannot stress this enough, greater Invis is our best friend. Use it as often as possible!
  • Being part of the Kyrian covenant, which you should be. It gives you access to Phial of Serenity, which is an additional Health Potion that essentially, gives you the ability to macro it with a Healthstone or Health Potion. You can also remove Bleeds, Poisons and Diseases with it as well


Compared to the other mage specs, Arcane suffers heavily from movement on single target fights. If you are close to the boss you can Arcane Explosion while moving during mechanics, but if you are well out of melee, then the movement screws you over. Luckily you can toss an Arcane Orb now while moving. On AoE and cleave movement doesn't really matter as you should be in melee in these situations, and can therefore use Arcane Explosion.

Have to commit to the situation. If you are doing single target, your legendary would be Temporal Warp, which is fine on AoE, however, currently the BIS AoE legendary is shoulders and heads above everything else, which is Arcane Bombardment. Meanwhile, specs like Fire play the same legendary in every situation.

While Arcane brings the niche of being insanely bursty, they don’t offer much outside of CDs. However, the damage profile has become smoother in Shadowlands. 

Limited by mana, but with mastery stacking, leading to increased maximum mana and mana regen on top of having mana gems it's better than previously.

What has changed

What is new in Season 4?

With the introduction of Season 4 (patch 9.2.7), we will be gaining access to Fated Raids from Castle Nathria, to Sanctum of Domination, and all the way to the last raid of Shadowlands, Sepulcher of the first ones.

On top of the raid with increased Item Level, we are getting access to old Dungeons that have been turned into new Mythic+ Dungeons, with higher item level drops and rewards.

Another Season 4 feature that will be introduced is a Vendor from the Fated Raids. This means after killing 30 Fated bosses (3 Weeks), you would be able to buy a Fated Item from the Vendor, which will contain loot from all 3 Raids at Higher Item Level. Essentially you will be able to buy 3 Items of your choice after a couple of weeks of killing Fated bosses, and some of the loot from the Vendor is very, very appealing for Arcane Mages.

Season 4 Mythic Plus Affix

Additionally, the new Season 4 Mythic+ Affix “ Shrouded ” Brings very nice gameplay for Arcane Mages with really big stats increased after killing Shrouded Mobs, you will pick a stat at the start of a key, Critical Strike, Mastery, Haste, or the default Choice unless selected otherwise Versatility.

Best stat to choose is - Critical Strike. It synergies very well around our burst windows with Touch of the magi and Radiant Spark. I will suggest avoiding Haste and Mastery, Haste is generally a stat that makes us run out of Mana faster, and Mastery is mostly a single target stat that is good in the raid. Versatility can be good, but not as Critical Strike, although it’s good for higher content to help with survivability.

I will talk about the Season 4 items that are most important to get for Arcane Mage in the Gearing Section.