After posting information about stats and spells, I think it's high time that I get into rotations. I'll also correct some of my information in previous Sorcery installments. Screw editing old posts; I'll keep this column stream-of-consciousness. I've broken off from leveling with Tora and Lewin for the most part and find myself soloing both PvE and PvP to a greater extent... which is fantastic for my XP and sorcerer learnings, if not my ability to survive running into a rifting group xD. This guide will assume you are level 34. You're likely not, so subtract abilities you don't have... it should not affect the rotation any.
By now you've probably figured out a good solo rotation so I won't go into this much. If you're taking around 25-30 seconds per monster then it's worthwhile to not hold back. First use Lumiel's Wisdom or Zikel's Wisdom if you have either of them.
DB -> IC -> FS -> Fusion -> Cage -> (Wind Harpwn) -> Harpwn -> FB -> Blaze
Certainly makes a difference from WoW, doesn't it? That's a complete chain of unique spells. By this point it should be dead, whatever it is. If not, either whip your book/orb out or harpwn/fb until it is, depending on its remaining health. If you've stacked HP exclusively or don't have wind cut down then you may need to insert more harpwn. Blink if you need to and don't be afraid to use root, it's only a minute cooldown, you'll be fine ^^. While casting instant spells such as Blaze and Cage you can run away from the mob (don't backpedal).
Of course, not all monsters last that long. Monsters in the abyss for example tend to be somewhat frail. For this we need a pair of rotations... to rotate between.
DB -> IC -> Fusion -> (Wind Harpwn) -> Harpwn -> FB -> Blaze -> FB
IC -> FS -> Fusion -> (Wind Harpwn) -> Harpwn -> FB -> Fusion -> FB
Yo dawg, i heard u leik rotations... Er. The reason for a pair of rotations is to save your cooldowns. You will otherwise kill one monster excessively fast and then have to muck around killing the next in line for hot fiery death. Cage is generally not worth bothering with against monsters that die quickly as if it doesn't get its final few ticks in, it's inefficient damage-per-mana wise. The rotation of DB and FS means that you'll always open with an acceptable piece of burst.
Of course, every two minutes you can always just cast the following gamebreaker...
DB -> IC -> FS -> Fusion -> Inferno -> (anything)
... but you didn't need me to give you an excuse to use Inferno :)
I refer here, of course, to proper groups: tank, healer, instance/elites, etc. Our role here changes to a cross between damage mitigation (via Crowd Control) and damage dealer. Your damage rotation changes in that you won't always have things off cooldown when your tank pulls the next monster and some spells just aren't as worthy of your attention: in fact, rotation is swept aside in preference to a priority system. The standard priorities, in order:
- (Wind Harpwn)
- Blaze (yes, blaze -- but only if you're finding yourself getting resists)
But perhaps our greatest group role is CC: Crowd Control. This usually needs to be designated by your tank first. Treeing or sleeping a monster that's in melee range of everyone is likely to be broken by Gladiator AOE or even by the tank himself (it's hard to see if some monsters are slept, such as the gargoyles in Fire Temple). Simple old Root can be used on monsters that don't have ranged attacks. If tree is resisted you can use sleep. You can use both root, tree and sleep to indefinitely disable two mobs, or temporarily disable three. I've noticed in Aion that you really need to announce that you're doing CC before you CC, or have marks up before you CC, or it's likely to be broken.
This topic deserves an entire section on its own (hmm, good idea!) but there are some openers and conditionals that usually ring true no matter the situation. If they haven't seen you, open with Delayed Blast. If they're likely to run, cast IC. If you're unlikely to need to CC them after opening on them, use Cage.
If they've seen you, cast tree. From there you have lots of options:
- Delayed Blast + Inferno, or if you need to move, get your distance + Inferno, making sure the tree will run out before Inferno goes off. DB will break the tree for you if you don't need to move.
- If they're likely to run, DB + IC + FS + Inferno is a decent opener. They'll have a moment of time though between IC and FS, so make sure you're not fighting something that can mess you up during that time (such as a ranger) and are close enough that they don't get out of range.
- If you need to move, you can either settle with opening with IC or Sleep them, giving you an additional chance to wind up an opener. Note that having both CC's on cooldowns is risky though!
- Sometimes it's best to open with Sleep so that you have CC in a snap, in the form of tree. Particularly useful against melee classes or shield classes.
- If it's a mage with a shield up then here's a nice rotation I've found: Open with sleep if possible, nuke them with a damage spell or two (inferno works), time a tree to go off before sleep wears off and then continue with your real opener. This takes a nice chunk out of their shield before the fight's started. I should note however that I don't know for sure whether or not Tree/Sleep's elemental defenses also apply to the shield. If they do then this rotation isn't quite as awesome as I've made it sound :(
Again, CC comes into play here, but not just disabling CC this time: Ice Chain becomes very handy to allow your melee classes to close the distance or prevent runners. Root becomes somewhat less reliable due to its tendancy to be removed by clerics or dispel potions. On that note, if there's a cleric in the opposing party's group, either focus him or CC him: he'll just dispel his team mates. Call out spirit masters and sorcerers and tree them if they have their shield up: your damage dealers will carve through his shield like butter without breaking the tree until it is down. If there's a ranger you want to CC, make sure they're not attacking you or you're not using Robe of Cold as his delayed shots + RoC's proc will break any CC you put on him.
Also, calling Aether's Hold on a healer is a must: unless there's another cleric or they have lots of CC, he's likely fucked :)
And finally, some more spell notes!
I'm a complete idiot, of course this is available for both factions xD. It's also a worthy replacement for Lumiel's Wisdom as the additional damage means you don't need to spend as much mana on spells to kill your target. It gives you a flat +25% damage for its duration and appears to still be awesome if it takes your MB past 1200.
Curse of Weakness
I still haven't tried this stigma yet, but I've found out higher ranks raise the percentage of damage taken per spell cast. The level 40 version (rank 2) takes a whopping 10% of your target's health off per spellcast! I am so getting that.
Robe of Cold
This spell will break any CC you've placed on your attacker, if they are able to get some shots off before you cast the CC. This mostly means rangers but it can also mean casters and glads/assassins with their bows out. Switch to another robe if you're fighting them and need CC.
Wind Cut Down
It's as sexy as it looks: Flame Harpoon with an additional 600 damage as a dot component (at 31 with average MB). GET IT.
Last issue I said it had a massive range. I misread. It's only a 5 meter radius on your target. Sorry ;)! It also doesn't raise any elemental defenses. So if you have 3000+dp consider using it to wind up an extremely nasty burst of damage on whomever you're fighting. I also have yet to test this but I suspect it lasts the full duration even in PvP.
This stigma turned out to be really underwhelming. The 500 AOE damage it does in PvP at level 34 is not worth bothering with and the 1k every 14 seconds in PvE isn't used as much as you'd think. It's not a completely arse spell, it's just not worth a stigma slot in my opinion. Lumiel's or Zikel's are more preferable.
As mentioned, this has a real psychological impact in PvP, possibly even more so than Inferno: it's an extreme visual indicator that you're taking damage from a high damage, bursty class. Use it sparingly if against someone likely to run. Also, resistances can go negative in Aion -- this spell will make your target take more damage even if their resistance is at zero.
!! Holy Shit Bonus Section !!
Level 37's incoming and I'd like to give my first impressions after mulling the new abilities over.
This spell completes Aether's Hold for Sorcerers... literally. Thought Aether's Hold + Four Pew Pew lasers were cool? Make the fourth pew pew laser do 3x the damage >:). This effectively gives us the equivalent of six pew pew lasers per Aether's Hold but more than that, it raises our burst we can do during that four seconds, which while previously unhindered due to the immobility of AH, was... let's face it... somewhat average in the DPS/burst department. I can't wait for +20% attack speed gear. Heh... we get to fist people (snicker)
If this doesn't look big, shame on you. As far as I know it doesn't reduce animations, only spell cast time, so it's not a blanket -25% spell casting time ability... but it'll make your inferno 4 seconds instead of 3, Ice Chain and Flame Harpwn 1.5 seconds instead of 2, etcetera. You can see the appeal of this in a PvP setting and I definitely want to acquire this stigma.
It looks like a flame harpoon on a 5 minute cooldown, yes, but it should instead just be looked at as... Life Tap. Yes, Life Tap from WoW. It takes 10% of your health and gives you 500+ mana in return. It's simply a mana management spell. The damage is just icing.
Hooray at more abilities to place on my burgeoning bars....
Next issue of Sorcery: Sorcerer PvP tips!