WoW: Warlock vs. Mage – Which Class Is Better?

wow warlock mage

One of the most enjoyable aspects of World of Warcraft is its variety of approaches and playstyles. Players can choose from numerous classes, but many WoW fans still struggle when choosing between Warlock and Mage. Stick around to find out about these two classes to determine which class would be better for you.

  • Article Breakdown
    Warlocks are more suitable for players who prefer to summon support creatures, stay grounded, and attack from a distance, while Mages are more suitable for players who enjoy high-mobility playstyles, CC, AoE, and high DPS.
  • The Warlock and Mage both offer amazing benefits with their range of utility roles, and both classes can be useful for leveling, open-world WoW content, PvE, PvP, questing, and raids.

World of Warcraft: Warlock vs. Mage

The Warlock and Mage are spellcasters in WoW, relying on magical abilities to deal damage and survive battles. Major differences include their mobility, durability, skills, and overall lore – despite the sources of their magic, both the Warlock and Mage classes represent the side of good within the WoW universe.

warlock mage wow

Both of these classes are incredible in terms of their utility, as they have some amazing skills and unique traits that can be hard to pass up. Still, they are so similar that many fans get stuck trying to choose between them.


How Many People Play World of Warcraft?

The “Warlock versus Mage” debate is ongoing within the WoW community, with fair arguments on either side of the spectrum. Below is an overview of the Warlock and Mage’s abilities, traits, and attributes.

Warlock Overview

Warlocks use Dark Magic (Fel), being masters of shadow magic and demonic powers. They can summon demons that can fight on their behalf, curse enemies, inflict damage over time, and even drain life energy from their opponents.


This class is known for its wide range of useful debuffs, in addition to destructive Fel-based spells. Their demonic pets enhance and protect them during combat encounters, all while the Warlock strikes targets from a distance.

SpecializationsAffliction (Ranged DPS):
Masters of shadow magic who specialize in drains and damage-over-time spells.
Demonology (Ranged DPS):
Commanders of demons who twist the souls of their army.
Destruction (Ranged DPS):
Masters of chaos who call down fire to burn enemies.
Soul Shards
Primary AttributeIntellect
Weapon SkillsStaves, Wands, Daggers, One-handed Swords
Off-hand items excluding shields and weapons
Armor TypeCloth
Signature AbilitiesSummons various demonic minions:
All minions are considered members of the demon creature type (Imp, Voidwalker, Sayaad, Felhunter, and Felguard).
Shadow Bolt (Level 1):
Sends a shadowy bolt at the enemy, causing (70.2% of Spell power) Shadow damage.
Drain Life:
Drains life from the target, causing 25 Shadow damage over 5 seconds and healing the player for 500% of the damage done.
Enslave Demon:
Subjugates the target demon up to level (player level + 1), forcing it to do the player’s bidding for 10 min.
Chaos Bolt:
Unleashes a devastating blast of chaos, dealing a critical strike for (321.048% of Spell power) Chaos damage (further increased by critical strike chance).

Mage Overview

Mages (also known as Magus, Magicians, or Wizards) use Elemental Magic (Fire and Frost) and Arcane Magic. They can inflict high DPS on their enemies with their attacks (single target and AoE), control the elements, manipulate time and space, teleport, and even create portals for quick travel.


This class is known for their crowd control abilities as well as for dealing high DPS in just about any situation, specializing in burst damage and area-of-effect spells that allow them to melt mobs, and they flaunt a few unique escape skills such as Blink and Invisibility. They are also capable of performing numerous utility roles, including the ability to refresh allies, teleport, or open up portals to major cities around the World of Warcraft map.

SpecializationsArcane (Ranged DPS):
Manipulates the arcane.
Fire (Ranged DPS):
Ignites enemies with balls of fire and combustive flames.
Frost (Ranged DPS):
Freezes enemies and shatters them with Frost magic.
Arcane Charge
Primary AttributeIntellect
Weapon SkillsStaves, Wands, Daggers, One-handed Swords
Off-hand items excluding shields and weapons
Armor TypeCloth
Signature AbilitiesConjure Refreshment (Level 5):
Conjures mana food for the player and allies.
Allows the caster to transport themselves to a friendly location.
Polymorph (Level 10/ Exile’s Reach):
Transforms the enemy into a sheep for 1 minute.
Frost Nova (Level 3):
Blasts enemies within 12 yards of the player for (5.149% of Spell power) Frost damage and freezes them in place for 6 seconds.
Pyroblast (Fire Mage Talent):
Hurls a fiery boulder causing (171.64% of Spell power) Fire damage.

Which Class is Better?

Both the Warlock and Mage classes are somewhat challenging – it will take some time and practice for players to truly get into the swing of using either class. However, some players have stated that they feel using the Mage class can be slightly easier at times due to the ability to use Frost instead of Fire or Arcane, but it still takes a ton of practice for players to make sure they’re dealing some solid damage on enemies.


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Mage characters are also more mobile than Warlock characters, although they are more CD-reliant – which is not enjoyable for many players. Since Mages are more mobile than Warlocks, players using Mage characters have the advantage of being able to control the battlefield as well, while Warlocks have the benefit of pets, which can take the role of tanks in combat.

Both classes can be relatively easy to level for solo players, can handle well when playing open world and questing, are a great option for players who enjoy PvE or PvP, and can still be quite sustainable in battle due to so many perks. Warlocks have skills that can be useful in varying situations, such as Cookies, Summons, Soulstones, Healthstones, and Life Drain, making them a favorite among many WoW players.

Why is World of Warcraft (WoW) Still So Popular?

The Warlock class is also seen as a must-have among players due to their utility abilities, so they are great for PvP situations and are often invited to join raids. Although Mages are not as sought after, tons of fans still adore the Mage class due to their mobility, portal advantage, and high utility – they’re great for farming, world content, and much more.

While Mages are more squishy than Warlocks, this class can deal some high damage and melt enemies in combat. Plus, players can still get the hang of soloing with the Mage class by using Frost and staying on their toes with Blink.

Players who prefer to unleash dramatic attacks and stay grounded (more or less) will likely prefer the Warlock class. In contrast, players who like moving around a lot, melting enemies, and using CC approaches will likely prefer the Mage class.


Why Is World of Warcraft Still So Popular in 2023?

Either way, the difference between these classes is minimal, and their effectiveness will rely on how well the class matches up with each WoW player’s preferred playstyle. Both the Warlock and Mage offer great utility through group abilities, unique spells, and CC skills.

That’s everything there is to know about how the Warlock and Mage classes compare, with stats thanks to the Wowpedia. Although this choice can be really tough considering so many similarities, they both have pros and cons for different players. Still, each of these classes can offer an incredible gameplay experience.

What do you think about the Warlock and Mage classes in WoW? Let us know in the comments below!

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