written by unknown
So apparently, I get a lot of /tells complimenting me about being a good mage so I figured that I'll share sort of how I play as a one. Please excuse this long and detailed explanation. Most are obvious but I think there are key points here worth noting. My Tutorial goes through a bit of the philosophy of mages. Everything I put here is from my own experience and may or may not be entirely correct. If you spot something inaccurate, please reply to let me know and I will update it
Old School/ New School Mage
Traditional mage thinking - Strictly healer or Damage Dealer. In FFXI, you were either Buff and Healer or Debuff/ Damage Dealer as far as mages are concerned (other than RDM). There was nothing else you can do because you had to manage your MP to make sure that you don't run out. That's why you're restricted to a certain "job".
With FFXIV, all of the old school ways of thinking doesn't apply as much due to a few key factors. First, are the ways to regain MP. There are a few skills such as [Stygian Spikes - THM r16], [Siphon MP - THM r20], [Spirit Bind - CON r18], and [10 minute 50% MP recovery skill]. Well Spirit Bind isn't technically regaining MP although in the bigger picture, it is... sorta (Since Spirit Bind cuts MP consumption in half, it's the same as using a spell and regain half the mp required at the same time). Another way to regain FULL MP is to obviously touch an Aetherite once every 10 minutes.
It is very clear now that MP isn't a problem. If MP isn't a problem anymore, then there isn't a need for a mage to strictly become a healer. Some may argue that if someone's about to die and you're in the middle of casting an attack spell, then you might be too late to throw in a healing spell. Although true, that just means the mage needs to pay attention to the player's health while attacking, OR, the Mob is attacking too hard so you need another mage (or lower the difficulty).
If you're a mage, you shouldn't have any down time whatsoever, meaning that if you're ever just sitting there in the middle of a fight just waiting for someone's health to go down, then you're causing your party to lose SP as a whole. First of all, why are you just sitting there just waiting to cure? One may say that you're conserving MP. However, there are so many ways to regain MP, you should never run out. To get the maximum SP/hr, every character should be doing something at all times is where I'm getting at.
Alright, so enough of my opinion on how mages should operate in a party. Let's get into how to become an awesome mage.
What do I need to be an awesome mage?
If you really do want to become an awesome mage, you'll NEED to get Thaumaturge to R20 for [Siphon MP]. This is a must. No way around it. If you hate Thaumaturge that much, use your Conjury spells. If you're just starting out, do Thaumaturge first for that spell and you'll love your Conjurer even more. If you want to be main Thaumaturge, you will want Cure II from Conjury so just get both disciplines up. You'll be glad you did in the end.
How does Area of Effects work on different mage classes:
Conjury AOE spells work the same as most other RPG AOE's. Imagine a circle and you're at the center. That's the Area of Effect of Conjury Spells.
Thaumaturge on the other hand is a "Cone" AOE. Imagine yourself speaking through one of those Orange Traffic Cones (Man I'm horrible with analogies!). Well your Area of Effect is a cone in front of you meaning everything behind you will not be affected. But what's the advantage of being a Thaumaturge over a Conjurer? The AOE of a Thaumaturge has a great range. Imagine the total area of a circle (Conjurer)... Now imagine the Cone AOE but the "total AREA of effect" is the same as a Conjurer. But with THM, instead of the AOE being behind you, it's now added in front, therefore increasing the range of your Thaumaturge Spells.
How Healing Works:
Something I have noticed from many mages in a party is that many do not heal properly. Due to the incomplete targeting system (just poorly created or not enough text commands), it's difficult to heal who you want to heal especially when the party members are spread out. The heals work differently on Conjurer and Thaumaturge so its important to know the differences.
When you target a party member and AOE Cure that member, the member is now the center point of the circle meaning the AOE Cure is around that person, not you. This also means that you may not get cured even though you're AOE curing another party member. Very important to keep in mind. When you AOE Cure on a Thaumaturge, you just face that person and AOE "Cone" Cure normally ensuring that you heal the selected target and everyone in that direction.
What's tricky now is that you have to turn AOE on or off manually when casting your spells. Many mages that I've observed accidentally cures themselves and not the party because they forget to turn AOE on before they cast their spells. Another issue I noticed is that some people just AOE cure around them, thus increasing the chances of missing the target they're trying to cure. I see this problem a lot more for Thaumaturges.
As a rule of thumb, if you're a Thaumaturge, stay further away from the party so that your Cures have a greater chance of affecting the entire party. If you're a Conjurer, stay closer to the Melees because your range isn't as far.
So now the question becomes, how do I automate this process and heal as quickly as you can? You got it... Macros!
Here are the first 3 macros that I use.
1- Ctrl 1 will always be [targetnpc]
/aoe on /ac "Sacrifice II" /party ****AOE Sacrifice II**** /wait 2 /aoe /echo ***********AOE OFF**********
/aoe on /ac "Cure II" /party ****AOE Cure II**** /wait 2 /aoe /echo ***********AOE OFF**********
Now, how to use the macro. As you can see, there is a text command. This is where you need to select the target you want to heal. Here's how the process looks like...
1. Ctrl-2 for Sacrifice II heal
2. Click on Party Member's name on party list.
So far, this is the best macro for healing that I have found and also the most accurate. The quickest healing command would be to change to since you don't have to select target. However, your position is now much more important and if you're a THM, which way you're facing as well.
Sometimes... I want to keep AOE on if I want to AOE some levemobs so my AOE Toggle Macro is...
/aoe /echo *********AOE CHANGE******** /echo *********AOE CHANGE******** /echo *********AOE CHANGE********
Why the Spam?? I can't tell you how many times I forget that I have AOE ON, and accidentally aggro mobs. You could have 2 macros though... which I probably should do sometime...
/aoe on /echo *********AOE ON******** /echo *********AOE ON******** /echo *********AOE ON********
/aoe off /echo *********AOE OFF******** /echo *********AOE OFF******** /echo *********AOE OFF********
Alright, I think I wrote enough since this is becoming a book lol. However, I do feel this is important and I hope some of you may find this beneficial!