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For the manga, see World of Warcraft: Mage.
Mage Crest.png
Available to Alliance & Horde All playable races (except Dracthyr)
Specializations Arcane Arcane (ranged DPS)
Fire Fire (ranged DPS)
Frost Frost (ranged DPS)
Resource(s) Mana, Arcane Charge
Primary attribute Intellect
Weapon skills Staves, Wands, Daggers, One-handed Swords and held in off-hand items excluding shields and weapons
Armor type Cloth
Signature abilities [Conjure Refreshment]
[Frost Nova]

“Bein' a mage means knowin' power can flow in more than one direction.”

Ganvar Singebeard[1]

The mage (also called magus,[2][3] magician,[4] or wizard) is a damage-dealing spell-caster that specializes in burst damage and area of effect spells. Mages are well known for their formidable damage output, as well as their range of crowd control abilities. Mages are also capable of performing a number of utility roles, from conjuring refreshments for their allies to teleporting or opening Portals to major cities.

Their greatest power has always been their creativity at finding new and explosive ways to use their magic.[5]

Mages wear only cloth armor, but compensate for this with a range of armor spells, wreathing themselves in flame, frost or even arcane energies. Nonetheless, when fighting melee opponents, mages stay alive by incapacitating attackers and always keeping one step ahead - and well out of reach. Mages are quick and can [Blink] away from attackers, deploy a [Frost Nova] to freeze entire groups in their tracks or even use [Invisibility] to slip out of sight. Mages are masters of kiting, and can use their enviable array of snares and crowd control abilities to defeat large groups of monsters with minimal effort.

Mages' primary role in groups at lower levels is damage dealing and crowd control through the use of [Polymorph], temporarily changing humanoids and beasts into harmless critters. At end-game levels, mages' impressive damage output is supplemented with useful utility powers such as [Counterspell] and [Spellsteal].

In PvP, mages deal ranged damage while using snares, stuns and [Polymorph] to control enemy players. Mages are the archetypal "glass cannons", capable of dealing an immense amount of damage if left uninterrupted, but vulnerable to attack. Mages compensate for this with a range of snares, stuns and incapacitation effects, and must keep their enemies at bay if they are to survive.

Mages can be an extremely fun class to play, with enviable damage output, strong crowd control and some interesting utility spells. Whether blasting foes with [Dragon's Breath] or freezing attackers in a [Ring of Frost], mages are a powerful presence on the battlefield. Masters of the arcane, mages can use their mental powers to alter the very fabric of reality, turning snarling attackers into harmless sheep or even altering time itself. Quick of mind and fleet of foot, mages stay one step ahead of their enemies, summoning frost and ice to entrap their assailants, and great fireballs and walls of flame to decimate their foes. Undisputed masters of the very fabric of reality, only the foolish do not fear the coming of a mage.

As of Dragonflight, the mage class is available to all playable races besides dracthyr. This means that mages are newly available to tauren, even when both the class and race have been in the game since it's initial release.

Class overview

Jaina Proudmoore one of the finest mages in all Azeroth.

Students gifted with a keen intellect and unwavering discipline may walk the path of the mage. The arcane magic available to magi is both great and dangerous, and thus is revealed only to the most devoted practitioners. To avoid interference with their spellcasting, magi wear only cloth armor, but arcane shields and enchantments give them additional protection. To keep enemies at bay, magi can summon bursts of fire to incinerate distant targets and cause entire areas to erupt, setting groups of foes ablaze. Masters of ice can command blizzards that tear into flesh and limit movement. Should enemies manage to survive this assault, the mage can shrink them into harmless sheep in the blink of an eye.[6]

Powerful magi can even generate enhancements and portals, assisting allies by sharpening their minds and transporting them instantly across the world.

Creation screen description

Magi are wizards of immense knowledge and skill. Their obvious physical frailty is deceptive, for they can call upon the cosmic energies of the Twisting Nether. Rarely do magi engage in melee combat. Instead, they prefer to attack from a distance, hurling powerful bolts of frost and flame at their unsuspecting enemies.[7]

Mages are the iconic magic-users of Azeroth who learn their craft through intense research and study. They make up for their light armor with a potent array of offensive and defensive spells.

Classic guide

Mages are spellcasting savants, flinging fire, frost, and arcane sorcery at their foes from afar.[8]


See also: Mage races
A blood elf mage.

Early kaldorei civilization was defined by direct manipulation of magic drawn from the Well of Eternity to create and sustain their society. Their constant use of the Well attracted attention from Sargeras and the Burning Legion, who manipulated the Highborne Queen Azshara into using the Well as a gateway, granting the Legion entry into Azeroth. The Legion's arrival sparked a massive conflict which would later be known as the War of the Ancients. The war had grave consequences, for even though the combined might of Azeroth's mortal races were victorious, the continent of Kalimdor was shattered, and a swirling, raging miasma of sea storms flowed into the vacant area where the Well of Eternity used to reside. This Great Sundering caused the Well's energies to permeate the atmosphere and spread magic all over the world.

This event convinced the majority of night elves to reject arcane magic and embrace Malfurion Stormrage's call for druidism. Many of the surviving Highborne could not endure this lifestyle, suffering as they were from withdrawal now that they could no longer draw on the Well's arcane energies. Their leader, Dath'Remar Sunstrider, called the druids cowards for refusing to use the magic he considered their birthright. In spite of Malfurion's warning that any use of magic would be punishable by death, Dath'Remar led his fellow Highborne in revolt, conjuring a giant magical storm in Ashenvale in an attempt to convince the druids to suspend the law. Unwilling to execute so many of their fellow elves, Malfurion and the druids instead exiled the Highborne from their lands. Dath'Remar and his followers chose to set sail from Kalimdor, eventually landing in Lordaeron where they would ultimately found the kingdom of Quel'Thalas and call themselves high elves. When their kingdom came under siege by the trolls of Zul'Aman, the high elves agreed to teach one hundred humans the arts of magic in exchange for military aid from the human nation of Arathor. From these two races, the arcane arts have spread to various races all over Azeroth.

In Warcraft II

WC2-BnetE-logo.png This section concerns content related to Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness or its expansion Beyond the Dark Portal.

Main article: Mage (Warcraft II)

Mages first appeared as a unit of the Alliance of Lordaeron in Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness. They were described as such:

Once students of the Conjurers of Azeroth, this new order of Mages have been forced to discover untapped magical forces to command in their war against the ruthless Orcs. Although masters of their arts, the Conjurers who fell during the First War were unprepared for the rigors of warfare. Determined to avoid a similar fate, the Mages have undertaken a regimen equally demanding on body and soul, thus dedicating themselves to the command of more aggressive and destructive magiks. Whether in their sanctum at the Violet Citadel in Dalaran or on the many battlefields of Lordaeron, the Mages are resolute in their efforts to defend the people.[9]

Put together, the pre-Warcraft III games and novels painted a fairly specific picture of the place of mages in human society. Warcraft I showed that Stormwind had its own secretive conjurer order and that the kingdom had a special relationship with them, even promoting them to advisors of the court. The Last Guardian confirmed that this southern mage group was officially separated from Dalaran to the point of being referred to as "hedge wizards", though some of them still belonged to the Council of Tirisfal. Speaking of Dalaran, the Warcraft II manual hinted that most Lordaeron mages ultimately answered to the Violet Citadel, with Day of the Dragon showing that the different monarchies of Lordaeron seemed to be wary of the Kirin Tor wizards and their politics, and to have no mage advisors of their own, as none were there to protect the various kings during the events of the Alterac crisis. How much of this remains canonical is unclear.

Of note is that in the aftermath of the Second War, an Alteraci mage stole the Book of Medivh from Stormwind City and exchanged it to Ner'zhul for military aid against Lordaeron and Stromgarde forces,[10] showing that some mages were eventually more loyal to their nation than to the Violet Citadel.


Archmage Khadgar with the staff Atiesh, perhaps the most accomplished of all living wizards.[11]
See also: List of mages
Name Role Affiliation Status Location
Neutral  Aegwynn Second-to-last Guardian of Tirisfal, mother of Medivh New Council of Tirisfal Deceased Buried at Morgan's Plot, Deadwind Pass
Alliance  Antonidas Former leader of the Kirin Tor Kirin Tor, Alliance of Lordaeron Deceased Unknown
Horde  Archmage Aethas Sunreaver Leader of the Sunreavers, former member of the Council of Six Sunreavers, Kingdom of Quel'Thalas, Kirin Tor Alive Various
Neutral  Archmage Ansirem Runeweaver Member of the Council of Six Kirin Tor Alive Various
Neutral  Archmage Karlain Member of the Council of Six Kirin Tor Alive Various
Neutral  Archmage Modera Member of the Council of Six Kirin Tor Alive Various
Neutral  Archmage Vargoth Member of the Council of Six, master of Kirin'Var Village Kirin Tor Alive Various
Horde  Grand Magister Rommath Grand Magister of Quel'Thalas Kingdom of Quel'Thalas, Magisters Alive Various
Horde  First Arcanist Thalyssra First Arcanist of Suramar The Nightfallen, Suramar City, Duskwatch Alive Various
Neutral  Illidan Stormrage Lord of the Illidari, former Lord of Outland Illidari Alive Various
Alliance  Jaina Proudmoore Lord Admiral of Kul Tiras, former ruler of Theramore, former leader of the Council of Six and the Kirin Tor Alliance Alive Various
Neutral   Kael'thas Sunstrider Last scion of the Sunstrider dynasty, former lieutenant of Illidan Stormrage Sunfury, Burning Legion Deceased Buried on the Isle of Quel'Danas
Neutral  Kalec Humanoid form of Kalecgos the Spell-Weaver, member of the Council of Six Blue dragonflight, Kirin Tor Alive Various
Neutral  Kel'Thuzad Lieutenant of the Jailer, founder of the Cult of the Damned, formerly majordomo of the Lich King, Archlich of Naxxramas, and Archmage of the Kirin Tor. Mawsworn Deceased Various
Alliance  Khadgar Leader of the Kirin Tor and the Council of Six, former apprentice of Medivh Kirin Tor, Sons of Lothar Alive Various
Neutral  Krasus Humanoid form of Korialstrasz, prime consort of Alexstrasza, former member of the Council of Six Red dragonflight, Kirin Tor Deceased Various
Neutral  Medivh Last Guardian of Tirisfal Council of Tirisfal Active Various
Alliance  Mordent Evenshade Leader of the Shen'dralar Highborne that have reintegrated into night elven society. Highborne, Darnassus Alive Howling Oak, Darnassus
Alliance  Magister Umbric Co-Leader of the void elves Void elves Alive Telogrus Rift
Neutral  Nielas Aran Court conjurer of Stormwind, father of Medivh Stormwind, Tirisgarde Deceased Guardian's Library, Karazhan
Neutral   Queen Azshara Empress of the naga, former ruler of the night elves Empire of Nazjatar Alive Various
Neutral  Rhonin Former leader of the Kirin Tor Kirin Tor Deceased Various


The banner of the Kirin Tor, the elite cadre of the most powerful mages in Azeroth.[12]
Defunct organizations


Kallipssa, a draenei mage.
Karina of Silvermoon, another blood elf mage.
Zi'mo the Empowered, a troll mage.
Exaura the Cryptkeeper, a forsaken mage.
Main article: Mage races

The mage class can be played by the following races:

Strength Agility Stamina Intellect Spirit Armor Health Mana
Alliance Alliance DraeneiDraenei Draenei Bc icon.gif 21 17 20 23 24 34 52 165
DwarfDwarf Dwarf Cataclysm 22 16 23 22 21 33 62 150
GnomeGnome Gnome WoW Icon update.png 15 22 20 27 22 44 52 225
HumanHuman Human WoW Icon update.png 20 20 20 23 22 40 52 165
Night elfNight elf Night elf Cataclysm 17 25 19 23 22 N/A
WorgenWorgen Worgen Cataclysm 23 22 20 19 21 N/A
Void elfVoid elf Void elf Legion N/A
Lightforged draeneiLightforged draenei Lightforged Legion N/A
Dark Iron dwarfDark Iron dwarf Dark Iron Battle for Azeroth N/A
Kul TiranKul Tiran Kul Tiran Battle for Azeroth N/A
MechagnomeMechagnome Mechagnome Battle for Azeroth N/A
Neutral Neutral PandarenPandaren Pandaren Mists of Pandaria 20 18 21 22 24 37 113 50
Horde Horde Blood elfBlood elf Blood elf Bc icon.gif 17 22 20 26 20 44 52 210
GoblinGoblin Goblin Cataclysm 17 22 20 26 20 N/A
OrcOrc Orc Cataclysm 23 17 22 20 25 24 62 120
TrollTroll Troll WoW Icon update.png 21 22 20 19 23 44 52 119
UndeadUndead Undead WoW Icon update.png 19 18 20 21 27 36 52 135
NightborneNightborne Nightborne Legion N/A
Mag'har orcMag'har orc Mag'har Battle for Azeroth N/A
Zandalari trollZandalari troll Zandalari Battle for Azeroth N/A
VulperaVulpera Vulpera Battle for Azeroth N/A

Mage beneficial racial abilities:


The mage is a pure DPS class, with all mage specializations focusing on dealing damage, and as such is capable of enviable damage output, whether launching an [Ice Lance] against a frozen target or invoking a [Blizzard] to decimate whole groups of opponents. In addition, mages also have a diverse selection of crowd control and utility abilities, making them capable of more than just killing enemies. [Spellsteal] and [Remove Curse] allow them to impact buffs and debuffs in combat, while [Ice Block] and [Invisibility] can let them escape tricky situations.


For a full list, see Mage abilities

Mages have a wide variety of spells which fall into three schools of magic: arcane, fire and frost. All spell schools include damage spells. Arcane includes some crowd control and utility, and most Frost spells provide a movement-slow effect supplementing their damage.

  • Fire spells tend to quickly strike the enemy for immediate damage, using spells like [Fire Blast] and effects like [Hot Streak] to overwhelm foes with spells cast with no cast time at all. They stand to benefit most from critical strikes.
  • Frost spells emphasize on chilling and freezing effects. Nearly every frost spell has a chill or freeze effect that fully or partially immobilizes an enemy. This includes freezing it in place (called a root) or slowing its movement speed (called a snare). Frost spells help the mage make kiting enemies much easier.
  • Arcane spells normally cost the most mana. They provide combat utility by allowing the mage to remove curses, provide crowd control, and absorb damage. Out of combat, Arcane spells allow the mage to portal themself or others to faraway locations, buff players' Intellect, and conjure food for themself or others, and more.


See also: Mage sets

A mage can only wear cloth armor.

A mage is able to wield two-handed staves. Wands, daggers, and one-handed swords can all be used as well, though they should always be wielded alongside an off hand item.


As a spell-caster, a mage's primary stat is intellect, which directly increases the mage's spell power and spell critical strike chance. Spell critical strike, haste rating and mastery rating all increase the speed of casting or spell damage, which will leader to higher average DPS. Stamina also benefits mages, but should not be focused on at the expense of other stats unless gearing for PvP. Agility, strength, and the other secondary stats should be ignored completely.


For a full list of specialization abilities, see Mage abilities

Mages can choose one of three specializations, gaining access to unique abilities and bonuses. Mage specializations focus on enhancing individual schools of magic – quick, aggressive Fire spells; efficient, controlling Frost spells and punishing Arcane spells.


Mage preview Arcane.jpg
Spell holy magicalsentry.png

Manipulates the arcane, destroying enemies with overwhelming power.

Arcane mages' damage focuses on [Arcane Blast] and [Arcane Missiles]. The Arcane specialization includes [Slow], a powerful instant single-target slowing effect, and [Arcane Barrage], an instant-damage ranged attack. Arcane mages can provide substantial burst damage with [Arcane Power] and [Presence of Mind]. Leveling as an arcane mage was once very difficult, but with the signature arcane spells ( [Arcane Barrage], [Arcane Missiles], and [Arcane Blast]) learned much earlier, it is now a far more feasible leveling build.

Mages of the arcane are diviners of secrets, balancing the ebb and flow of incredible mystic energies. Unparalleled skill is required to manipulate the volatile forces of the universe. These practitioners push their magical knowledge to its very limits—often to the brink of their own exhaustion, and at great risk to the world around them. Those who master this craft are capable of releasing a barrage of unrelenting power upon their enemies, drawing upon replenishing energies to maintain their assault for as long as the battle demands.[13]


Mage preview Fire.jpg
Spell fire firebolt02.png

Ignites enemies with balls of fire and combustive flames.

Fire mages' damage output relies on casting huge Pyroblasts as often and as quickly as possible. [Hot Streak] allows Fire mages to consistently cause their hardest-hitting spell to be cast instantly, alongside other effects like [Firestarter] and [Hyperthermia]. In AoE situations, activating [Combustion], [Living Bomb] allows them to immolate closely packed enemies. Fights in which players are forced to move frequently can also benefit Fire mages, as [Scorch] and instant Pyroblasts allow them to maintain damage while repositioning. The Fire spec provides few tools in the way of survival. This has historically made Fire a good choice for high-end raiders who seek to maximize damage output, but poor in PvP due to Arena's survival requirements.

While any worthy mage is an unparalleled expert in the use of magic and heavily dedicated to their craft, those who master the forces of fire tend to be a little more audacious than their peers. If a threat stands before them, the answer is always to neutralize it in a glorious blaze. A lifetime dedicated to the study of fiery forces only fuels their pyromania, and these mages take pride—even pleasure—in igniting their enemies in wild bursts of flame. Mistake their affinity for watching things burn as a lack of self-control at your own peril.[13]


Icon-time.svg This section contains information that is out-of-date. Reason: needs "shatter" style gameplay description

Mage preview Frost.jpg
Spell frost frostbolt02.png

Freezes enemies in their tracks and shatters them with Frost magic.

Frost mages specialize in crowd control and snaring foes with their various chills, allowing for powerful kiting, and providing good AoE capability. Frost mages also learn [Summon Water Elemental], gaining a pet which has a Freeze ability similar to [Frost Nova]. Frost's AoE makes it the spec best suited to five-player dungeons.

Frost mages stand apart from their colleagues, in that their chosen school of magic focuses on maintaining supreme control over the capabilities of their enemies. Mages who command frost perform chilling displays on the battlefield, rendering foes immobile as they bombard them with ice. Often, the blade never reaches the caster before the bitter cold takes hold. The frost mage exudes frigid power as icicles form around them, foreshadowing the wintry demise of those who stand opposed on the field of battle.[13]

Endgame expectations

Icon-time.svg This section contains information that is out-of-date. Reason: stops at Wrath

In a group or raid environment, mages are usually tasked with ranged DPS, AoE, [Counterspell], [Spellsteal], crowd control and finally providing food.

A human mage in art.

With the introduction of patch 1.11, mages enjoyed a high degree of flexibility in the endgame. Previous to patch 1.11, it was expected that most mages would spend at least 11 talent points in the arcane tree for [Evocation], as it is a quite powerful mana-regenerative spell. It was given free without the use of talent points. New changes to all three trees also made investing points into both the fire and the frost trees much more viable. This still holds true with the release of Burning CrusadeBurning Crusade. It should be mentioned that a build predominantly using the fire tree will usually contribute greater DPS in multiple-target encounters; those using a predominantly arcane tree will usually contribute greater DPS in single-target encounters; and finally, those using a predominantly frost tree will contribute a fair amount of control.

The endgame mage also acts as a utility class, providing drink, food, buffs and portals. Originally, when it came to providing drink and food, mages were by some considered equal to "vending machines" due to their unique ability to create food and drink and provide them with no cost except mana and time. In Wrath-Logo-Small.png Wrath of the Lich King, Refreshment Tables may also be created at level 80 at the cost of five  [Arcane Powder]: the table lasts for three minutes or 50 charges of  [Conjured Mana Strudel], whichever comes first. It is expected that a mage provides his party or raid with food and drink for free. A second (or third) table can sometimes be called for while mustering players at the beginning of a raid if the first expires before everyone has received their strudel.


PvP-wise, mages are considered "glass cannons" - a design philosophy which gives mages generous burst damage at the cost of generally low health and armor values. Aided by talents such as [Presence of Mind] and [Arcane Power], they are one of the classes with the potential for dealing out the greatest amount of damage in the shortest amount of time. In group PvP, mages will stay back and focus on crowd control with [Polymorph] and pick off targets from range. Depending on the Battleground and the situation, mages typically AoE to prevent node captures or nuke flag carriers as fast as possible. In solo PvP, a skilled frost mage is a formidable opponent. Fire mages are in PVP well known for their burst damage, and arcane mages are known as venerable supporters.

In the RPG

Icon-RPG.png This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.

Mages, the most common of arcanists, are found all over Azeroth. They focus on magic that creates and changes things, most often with the purpose of damaging their enemies and boosting the power of their allies.[14] Such beings can obtain a familiar, which is a normal animal that gains new powers and becomes a magical beast when summoned to service by a mage,[14] while others choose to become focused mages.[15] Mages also understand the workings of arcane energy so well that they can counter most magic with great effectiveness. An adept mage who has dedication to and natural predilection for one of the schools of specialization becomes more entrenched. At this point, the mage chooses either evocation or transmutation as a preferred school, and casts spells from his chosen school. The mages of the Kirin Tor first mastered the arts of casting spells using the elements of ice and fire. Mages are also known for being able to summon elementals, usually water elementals, but can also summon air, earth and fire elementals as well.[14][16] The greatest mortal mage ever to live is the Naga Queen Azshara, who still lives. In fact, she may no longer be mortal.[17]

The first known mages on Azeroth were elves, before the breaking of the Well of Eternity and the  [Exile of the High Elves], who lived on the shores of the Well of Eternity and wielded its powers.


  • Mages who developed their powers outside of conventional Dalaran-approved teachings are called hedge mages.
  • The building of a mage's wand is not easy. Rare substances are required, and a vessel must be made that can store great quantities of magical energy.[18]
  • Some sensitive mortals have the ability to naturally sniff out fel and arcane magic, being able to detect demons, wizards and possessed people on their own.[19]
    • Every mage wielded the forces of magic differently, and if one was sensitive enough, one could tell the differences from one mage to the next.[20]
  • Mages have a tendency to premature hair graying from the stress of the magical energies they wield.[21] Despite this they can have lasting longevity, with human mages being able to survive for two hundred years, though deathly thin and frail. Aegwynn bearing a child at seven hundred fifty years old was considered an anomaly.[22]
  • According to Muradin Bronzebeard, mages have always struck him as people of extremes, destructive but physically delicate, the metaphorical glass cannon.[5]
    • He also mentioned that he never met a mage who didn't have twice the curiosity of a cat and less than half one's self-preservative instincts.[23]
  • Mages automatically start at friendly standing with the Kirin Tor faction, while all other classes start at neutral.
  • When World of Warcraft launched, the mage class was only available to humans, gnomes, trolls, and undead.
  • Dr. Bill Lee, a recurring character from the Stargate SG-1 and Stargate Atlantis, states that he plays a mage, and makes multiple references to the game, including Elwynn Forest. While his character's race is not explicitly stated, it's assumed from that statement that he plays a human.




Patch changes

  • Mists of Pandaria Patch 5.0.4 (2012-08-28): Updated rotations. Fire mages control the random nature of spells. Frost mages made stronger, viable in PvE. Crowd control and survivability that was unique to Frost transferred to the whole class.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.0.1 (2010-10-12): There is now a new spell fly-out UI feature for mage portals. Clicking on the [Teleport] or Portal buttons will expand the list of choices available.
  • Wrath-Logo-Small.png Patch 3.0.2 (2008-10-14): Conjured mana gems no longer disappear from your backpack after being logged out for more than 15 minutes.

See also

Game mechanics:



External links

fr:Mage pl:Mage