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Arcane Brilliance: Wrath reputation rewards for Mages, part 1

Christian Belt

Each Saturday, Arcane Brilliance conjures forth a column all about Mages. You may well wonder: what does Arcane Brilliance do the rest of the week? The answer--up until a couple of weeks ago--was travel through time, righting the wrongs of the past. It was all very heroic, lent itself handily to an episodic format, and Dean Stockwell was prominently involved. Then Wrath happened. Now? Well, now Arcane Brilliance pretty much just hangs around in , ganking Death Knight noobs. Trust us, it's just as heroic, in its own way.

I trust we, as a nation of Mages, are all happily churning our way through the new content, gazing about us in wonder and amazement at the majesty of Northrend, and then nuking the crap out of that majesty. I know I am. Just about everything about the Wrath experience has been positive for me so far. The visuals are incredible, the quests are fun and rich with lore, and the music is phenomenal. I could (and have) spend hours just wandering about Dalaran, taking in the ambiance, feeling all kinds of magey. Seriously, Blizzard, I'm starting a slow-clap right now, and it's all for you.

One thing you've likely noticed as you've quested your way north is that almost everything you do seems to grant you reputation with some new faction or another. If you're anything like me, your first questions were probably "where might I find the quartermasters for these factions," and "what do they sell that is made of cloth and dripping with spellpower?" For a nice overall guide to the basics of these new factions, I'd urge you to check out our own Alex Ziebart's Wrath 101 posts about the subject. They can be found here and here. After the jump, we'll be focusing on the rewards these new factions offer that are specifically valuable to Mages.

This week, we'll go over about half of the new factions and the Mage-centric rewards they offer. Then sure enough, next week we'll deal with the other half. Here at Arcane Brilliance, we're nothing if not predictable.

Alliance Vanguard

Like its counterpart, the Horde Expedition, you'll start gaining reputation with this faction and its sub-factions almost the instant you step off the boat in Northrend. The rewards for both factions are virtually identical in every way except name and item model. You can find its quartermasters in Valgarde in Howling Fjord, and Valiance Keep in Borean Tundra.

This will be an upgrade for almost everybody at the wand slot, but frankly, it looks nothing like a quill, which is disappointing. Maybe I'm the only one who was envisioning hurling bolts of frost damage from a feathered pen, but I like to think others share my dream of someday being able to slay a monster with a writing utensil. Anyway, you can snatch this up at revered and level 78, and it's a pretty nice entry-level end-game wand.
A decent off-hand frill, this is packed with stamina, haste rating, and a solid amount of spellpower. Again, you can pick this up at revered and level 78.

Horde Expedition

The quartermasters for this faction can be found in Warsong Hold in Borean Tundra, or Vengeance Landing if your starting area of choice happens to be Howling Fjord.
Sharing stats with the Gnomish Magician's Quill above, this is likely going to be an upgrade for you when you get to the level required to equip it. It's a powerful option for that slot, and nobody will laugh at you for bringing it into Naxx with you. It requires level 78 and revered.
This off-hand frill has stats identical to the Orb of the Eastern Kingdoms as detailed above. You may be able to locate other options at the level, but this does have some nice stats on it. You can pick it up at revered and level 78.

The Kalu'ak

You'll meet these kindly walrus folk in either starting zone, and be able to immediately start completing daily quests for them. Gaining reputation with them isn't difficult at all, and exalted with them will net you a really sweet fishing pole. Plus, who doesn't want to be friends with a walrus-guy? Honestly, I can understand the Lich King wanting to kill Gnomes, or Humans, or Blood Elves, but these guys? They just want to be left alone to fish and get ugly sea-lions to fall in love with each other. Arthas is a prick. Their quartermasters can be found in the main Kalu'ak villages in Dragonblight and Howling Fjord.
You can get this at level 76, and sleepwalking through either of the starting zones will get you to the required honored reputation level with these guys. The stats are pretty sizable. You may not want to break high-end BC set bonuses for this, but if your gear isn't from Black Temple or Sunwell or whatever, this is likely an upgrade. That's a whole lot of hit rating and spellpower on there.

The Wyrmrest Accord

Upon reaching Dragonblight, you can begin questing for this very cool faction. Any faction that lets you fight on dragonback every day is good in my book. Their quartermaster can be found in Wyrmrest Temple right smack in the middle of Dragonblight.
Nice solid stats on this piece. I'm a sucker for a big chunk of hit rating, and this belt delivers. It's available at level 78 and honored.
I'm not crazy about the spirit on these, as I simply don't like the stat much for Mages, but these bracers are otherwise spiffy. They have a lot of spellpower, and nice blue gem slot for your customization needs. These require level 80 and revered. Also, some of you seem to like spirit. If so, well, here you go.
At exalted, and level 80, you can pick up these beauties. You won't find much better for your feet outside of Naxxramas, so grinding rep for these isn't a bad idea at all.

The Oracles

You can find a really nice guide to this faction and its Scryer/Aldor-ish counterpart here. Basically, you'll need to choose which faction you want to gain rep with through a quest-line, but switching factions if you're unhappy with your choice isn't as hard as you might think. The quartermaster for the Oracles is found at Rainspeaker Canopy in Sholazar Basin. If you hate murlocs, then you may not want to pick this faction, since they're all, um, murlocs. Well, gorlocs, I guess, but I simply don't care enough to split that particular hair.
Again, I'm not a fan of spirit, but this belt is otherwise solid. It requires level 78 and revered.
This wand is a good option for the level, and a likely upgrade for whatever you're already carrying in that slot. To purchase it, you'll need level 78 and revered with the faction.
This is ok, I guess. It provides a sizable amount of crit rating, but the proc isn't very exciting. It gives you back about 200 mana every time you kill a mob or another player who grants honor or experience. This makes it valuable when grinding or PvPing in a battleground, but not valuable at all while fighting a boss. Requiring exalted reputation, it's interesting, but of very limited worth.

Frenzyheart Tribe

The other choice in the Oracles/Frenzyheart faction-off, you can find the quartermaster for this faction at the appropriately-named Frenzyheart Hill in Sholazar Basin.
These are an adequate option for the slot at level 78. They're nothing to write home about, but they'll do. You'll need to be revered by these little wolf-guys to pick them up.
Again, an interesting trinket option, but ultimately less-than-stellar. The innate haste rating is pretty cool, sure. And the on-kill proc grants a flat 5% damage increase over the next ten seconds, which is fantastic. The problem, as with its Oracle counterpart above, is that it won't be of any use to you in boss fights. This will be fun for grinding, and large-scale PvP, though.

Come back next week for a long look at the Mage-goodies being sold by the other Wrath factions. In the meantime, have fun kiting the denizens of Northrend around, set some scourge on fire, and try not to ninja too many quest mobs. Unless you're ninjaing them from a Warlock. In that case, go right ahead.

Every week Arcane Brilliance teleports you inside the wonderful world of Mages and then hurls a Fireball in your face. Check out our recent look at how long your gear will last you in Northrend, or our guide to leveling builds to get you through Northrend. Until next week, keep the Mage-train a-rollin'.

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