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.
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. 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, while others choose to become focused mages. Mages also understand the workings of arcane energy so well 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 mages choose either evocation or transmutation as a preferred school and casts spells from their chosen school. The Mages of the Kirin Tor first mastered the art 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. The greatest mortal Mage ever to live is the nagaQueen Azshara, who still lives. In fact, she may no longer be mortal.
Early kaldorei civilization was defined by direct manipulation of magic drawn from the Well of Eternity to create and sustain their society. The constant use of the Well attracted the attention of Sargeras and the Burning Legion; their coming resulted in a massive war 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 waters to dissipate into 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 Highborne refused this lifestyle and went into self-imposed exile to Lordaeron where they eventually founded their kingdom of Quel'Thalas and became the high elves. When their kingdom came under siege by the trolls of Zul'Aman, the high elves agreed to teach one hundred humans the art of magic in exchange for military aid from Arathor. From these two races, the arcane arts have spread to various races all over Azeroth.
Although masters of their art, the Conjurers of Azeroth who fell during the First War were unprepared for the rigors of warfare. A new breed of Mages, once students of the Conjurers, were determined to avoid a similar fate. This new order of mages was forced to discover untapped magical forces to command in their war against the ruthless orcs, dedicating themselves to the command of more aggressive and destructive magic at full disposal. Whether in their sanctum at the Violet Citadel in Dalaran or on the many battlefields of Lordaeron, the Kirin Tor are resolute in their efforts to defend the people.
The most powerful Mages of the Eastern Kingdoms were perhaps the Archmagi of Dalaran. The city was transported to Northrend when the Mages believed they were in danger. It now hovers in the skies over Crystalsong Forest. The Kirin Tor are quick to recognize fellow Mages as allies, but outsiders must prove themselves.
Mages can use Wands, Daggers, One-Handed Swords, Staves. Wands go in the ranged slot and will continue to shoot once manually started, and do not require any form of ammunition. A Mage can only wear cloth armor. With the Mists of Pandaria expansion, Wands are equipped as a main hand weapon and would be used interchangeably with any other main hand weapon.
Arcane spells include single-target damage spells and utility. Arcane spells allow mages to remove curses, provide crowd control, absorb damage, teleport themselves or others to major capital cities, Slow Fall, Counterspell, buff players' intellect stat, save mana for later use in the form of mana gems, conjure food and water for himself or others, and provide many other conveniences.
Fire spells are primarily damage-dealing spells, including direct single-target damage and area of effect damage. Many Fire spells include damage over time effects.
Frost spells are primarily single-target and area of effect damage-dealing spells, but with more emphasis on chilling 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 specialized mages can further improve these chilling effects and increase frost damage output to respectable levels. Frost spells help the mage use kiting as a combat tactic.
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[Tailoring] and [Enchanting] are logical choices for any cloth armor wearing class. This allows crafting decent armor as one levels and various enchants from [disenchanting] created items as one levels. Tailoring also increases cloth drops at higher levels.
[Alchemy] can be useful for mages who need quick potion heals and various buffs from elixirs and flasks. This profession is also good all around for making money and supplying guild runs.
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. 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 mostly consists of stuns and max damage output, but with the cost of time and mana. Arcane consists of medium damage output at a low cost of mana and time. Arcane is most useful in battlegrounds if you freeze your opponent first. When an enemy approaches or is attacking you use Freeze, then Blink away and attack. On average, your freeze ability gives you about 5+ seconds to attack.
Dr. Bill Lee, a re-occurring character from the TV Series '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.