rift soul breakdown – mage – tier 1, squishy

I agonized over it for all of two minutes and decided that the three buckets I’ll be splitting mages up into and decided to go with support/healing, the more durable summoner/melee archetypes, and glass cannons. Today’s set of mages nuke hard and fast and depend on their damage output more than anything else to last through fights. That’s right. We’re talking about squishies. Actually, we’re not, but I’m going to pretend we are because it makes the math easier. In all honesty, there’s no good way to split up the 6 core dps mage souls. I could do 2 summoners vs 4 non-summoner… but I am liking the 3v3v3 thing. So 🙂


Each point spent in Pyromancer increases damage by 1%.

Pyromancers are the most iconic “mage” archetype that Rift has to offer. They throw fireballs and fireblasts and fire bursts and other fire things that start with b. And they light the ground on fire and generally kill things with fire. This is not the most subtle class. Originally, they had some mechanics that encouraged the glass cannon schtick even further – making them more effective if they stood still. That’s all gone and now they’re easier and more fun to play in my opinion.

At zero points, pyromancer gives you Flame Bolt, which is an instant cast, high damage nuke with an 8 second cooldown.

In the current skill trees, mages all have one or more spammable nukes that “count as a Primary Bolt”. These abilities are usually earned at zero points. There are numerous talents across the various skill trees that augment primary bolts somehow. The pyromancer’s primary bolt, Fireball, comes at zero points and has a 2.5s casting time with a 40% chance to light the target on fire for 8 seconds.

Tier 1 Talents

  • 5 points – -20% cast time and mana cost for non-instant fire spells, -5% cast time for other spells, +5m range to non-melee damaging spells
  • 3 points – +6% crit chance with primary bolts
  • 3 points – eliminate pushback when casting single target spells

The range increase does not stack with any other range increasing talents – so no double range nukes

For 2 points in the root, pyromancers get Fire Armor, a 1h personal buff that increases outgoing fire damage by 5%. Mages provide a lot of armor spells across the various souls, but can only maintain one at a time. Many of them provide a basic armor like this one at low levels and then obsolete it with a more powerful version (that may or may not be a straightforward upgrade) after level 20 or so. Pyromancers using Fire Armor will likely replace it at level 21.

4 points in the root unlocks Internalize Charge, a straightforward charge consumer. When switched on, charge begins to drain slowly but all outgoing damage is increased by 10%. As with most charge consumers, Internalize Charge disables charge point generation while active.


Each point spent in Stormcaller increases AoE damage by 1% and all other damage by 0.5%.

Stormcallers are lightning and ice themed mages who specialize in large area snares followed up with large area nuke spam. Their air spells buff their water spells, then their water spells buff their air ones. They have some impressive burst damage and have some of the most memorable visuals (lightning comes out of the sky) of any mage archetype at low level.

For zero points, they get the groundwork for their whole water<->electricity synergy mechanic. Their lightning spells apply up to 3 stacks of Electrified, and their ice spells apply a single stack of Hypothermia to the enemy. By themselves, these debuffs don’t do anything, but later on, there are a lot of things that trigger off of them.

They start with Electrocute, which is a channeled dot that deals increasing damage and knocks back the enemy. It isn’t spammable unfortunately, carrying with it a whopping 15 second cooldown. They also start with Forked Lightning, which deals air damage to up to two enemies.

Tier 1 Talents

  • 5 points – +5% damage
  • 3 points – Forked Lightning hits up to 8 targets
  • 2 points – eliminate pushback when casting aoe spells

2 points in the root unlocks Icicle, a spammable single target water nuke with a 2.5s casting time. There are upgrades later on that make this ability much more attractive, but otherwise, it’s just a big slow nuke that applies Hypothermia.

4 points in the root gives you Cloudburst, a primary bolt and the first ability to actually take advantage of the elemental synergy mechanics. Cloudburst is instant cast single target water damage that increases by 15% per stack of Electrified – this means it will do +45% damage at full stacks.


Each point spent in Warlock increases damage over time by 1% and all other damage by 0.5%.

Okay, so maybe squishy is too strong of a word here. But I couldn’t very much put Warlocks anywhere else. They specialize in death magic dealt over time and are the least squishy of the squishy mage set. I like saying squishy.

As a zero point class, they get Life Leech, a death DoT that heals the caster for 0.3% of their maximum hp every second. The spell has a 1.5 second cast time, but you can maintain it on several targets for some respectable self healing.

They also get their primary bolt, Void Bolt. At zero points, it has a 2s casting time and does average death damage.

Tier 1 Talents

  • 5 points – +25% charge generation
  • 3 points – Life Leech deals +60% damage, gains +60% benefit from spell power, has +6 second duration (up from 10s), and heals an additional 3% of your max hp
  • 3 points – Void Bolt has its casting time reduced by 24% and its mana cost by 30%. Eliminates pushback while casting Void Bolt and Life Leech.

They’re really serious about those two spells, no? This increases Life Leech’s heal to 6% of your max hp over 16 seconds (up from 3% over 10s) – or 0.375% health per second.

2 points in the root unlocks Dark Touch, a nice instant single target death dot that lasts 16 seconds.

4 points in the root unlocks Dark Armor, another armor spell that can’t be used at the same time as other similar spells. It increases dot damage output by 5% and deals death damage to attackers when hit.

And there we go, the first batch of mages. We’ll do Harbinger and the summoners next time. Hrm. That makes a half decent band name…

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