Dragon Age Inquisition Mage Class Builds Guide

By   /   Nov 25, 2014

The mage class is one of the most loved in the Dragon Age series, as it has controversial aspects in the game’s story, and offers an amazing set of abilities when in combat.

With up to five different skill trees to choose from, building your mage effectively can sometimes become a challenging task, since the class is naturally vulnerable to physical damage and cannot properly utilize heavier armor.

For more help on Dragon Age Inquisition, read our Power Farming Guide, Warrior Class Builds Guide, Multiplayer Guide and Party Builds.

Dragon Age Inquisition Mage Class Builds

This guide covers 5 different mage builds – one for each specialization, and two that take use of the primary four skill trees. We’ll be using level 18 as standard for all the builds.

Note: Skills with the “+” sign indicate that an additional point in their upgrade has also been spent.

Mage Class Build #1 – The Undead Commander

Storm

  • Lightning Bolt
  • Stormbringer
  • Lightning Bolt
  • Energy Barrage
  • Conductive Current

Inferno

  • Flashfire+
  • Immolate

Winter

  • Winter’s Grasp
  • Fade Step+

Necromancer

  • Horror
  • Death Siphon
  • Blinding Terror
  • Haste
  • Power of the Dead
  • Spirit Mark+
  • Walking Bomb+

This build is focused on the Necromancer specialization. The mage generally has the tendency to be one of the most lethal classes, using a mix of powerful spells to do AoE damage.

The Necromancer deviates from that slightly, as it doesn’t really involve direct damage, but emphasizes on damage through unconventional means. This is evident by the higher Necromancer abilities like Spirit Mark and Walking Bomb.

With this build, you won’t be able to support your party. Instead, you’ll be the core damage-dealer of the entire group.

In such a case it is ideal to have a couple of tanks up front who can provide you with cover, while your character takes the role of controlling the battlefield through the crowd-controlling Necromancer skills.

For the remaining damage, you’ll look towards more conventional abilities from the other trees.

Fade Step is a life-saver and comes in extremely handy when you need to positioning yourself away from enemies, while the rest of the skills supply you with enough firepower to launch devastating AoE attacks form a distancing, all the while controlling the battlefield with your powerful Necromancer skills.

Mage Class Build #2 – Through the Veil

Inferno

  • Flashfire
  • Immolate
  • Flashpoint
  • Pyromancer
  • Clean Burn
  • Wall of Fire
  • Fire Mine

Winter

  • Winter’s Chill

Spirit

  • Barrier

Rift Mage

  • Veilstrike+
  • Stonefist+
  • Encircling Veil
  • Firestorm
  • Restorative Veil
  • Smothering Veil
  • Pull of the Abyss+

The Rift Mage specialization gives you the powerful abilities that are focused on doing AoE damage, as the tree itself has four active abilities, all of which target an area.

While the Rift age may not exactly have the same influence as a Necromancer, they are generally more powerful when it comes to direct damage and AoE spells.

This build takes that idea and combines it with the Inferno tree. The Inferno elemental tree has a lot of AoE offensive spells, which give you different options when your Rift Mage abilities are down.

However, like most elements, there are certain enemies that are immune to them, and so you’ll need to look towards other means. For this reason, you should also invest points in Winter’s Chill.

Fade Step is unnecessary in this build because you will have to station yourself much further than the rest, only using your Veilstrike and Stonefist abilities to deal damage, while adding in Fire-based AoE spells whenever required.

When things do get tight, you can cast Barrier and attempt to get out of the zone as quickly as possible.

Mage Class Build #3 – Knight Protector

Spirit

  • Barrier+
  • Guardian Spirit
  • Mind Blast
  • Revival
  • Strength of Spirits

Storm

  • Chain Lightning
  • Energy Barrage

Winter

  • Fade Step
  • Winter’s Grasp

Knight Enchanter

  • Spirit Blade+
  • Fade Cloak+
  • Resurgence
  • Combat Clarity
  • Fade Shield
  • Knight-Protector
  • Disruption Field

This build focuses on the Knight Enchanter specialization. Before the release of a few Twitch vides in a preview of Dragon Age: Inquisition (prior to release), there was a lot of speculation about the Knight Enchanter specialization.

Many guessed that it was a return of the famous Arcane Warrior specialization in Dragon Age: Origins. However, Knight Enchanter is completely different from Arcane Warrior.

While DA: Origin’s mage specialization allowed one to wear heavy armor and wield powerful swords, the Knight Enchanter is about defensive solidity, and using your magic to deal melee damage.

This makes the Knight Enchanter a fairly defensive and semi-supportive specialization.

You have abilities like Spirit Blade to be on the offensive, but at the same time it is balanced with the defense likes of Fade Cloak, Resurgence, and Disruption Field. They all prove to be extremely useful, but often it will leave you extremely vulnerable.

For this reason, you should look to invest heavily in the Spirit tree as well if you are going for the Knight Enchanter specialization. The upgraded Barrier along with the many passives will allow you to be up close and personal, yet still manage to have enough defensive solidity to survive.

Revival in your hands is an excellent ability (the same can’t be said for the AI), as you can time the revive according to situation to reverse the situation on the battlefield.

Mage Class Build #4 – The Spirit Angel

Spirit

  • Barrier+
  • Peaceful Aura
  • Dispel
  • Revival+
  • Mind Blast+
  • Strength of Spirits
  • Rejuvenating Barrier

Winter

  • Fade Step
  • Winter’s Grasp
  • Winter Stillness
  • Wall of Ice
  • Ice Mine
  • Ice Armor
  • Blizzard+

Remaining
Specialization of Choice

The previous three builds in this guide tackled the specializations, but this one suggests how a Mage in Dragon Age: Inquisition would play if it were to primarily utilize the basic four trees from the start for a more supportive role.

One major challenge (and controversial aspect) of the game is that it lacks any real party healing ability in the game. The Spirit tree primarily exists for support, but it does not have any direct healing.

When it is combined with certain abilities from the Winter tree, it does play out as an important support role that can perform effectively offensively as well.

Your primary damage dealing abilities are the trap-based Ice Mine and the powerful Blizzard, and the remaining ones from Spirit will allow you to assist your party.

Once again, Fade Step is useful for positional your character properly so to avoid conflict. Your main objective with this build however would be to maintain the Barrier for as long as possible while assisting the team with Mind Blast and Blizzard.

Mage Class Build #5 – The Elementalist

Storm

  • Energy Barrage
  • Chain Lightning+
  • Lightning Bolt+
  • Static Charge
  • Stormbringer
  • Gathering Storm
  • Static Charge

Inferno

  • Immolate
  • Flashfire
  • Pyromancer
  • Fire Mine

Winter

  • Winter’s Grasp
  • Winter Stillness
  • Wall of Ice
  • Ice Armor
  • Blizzard

Who needs specializations when you have such amazing elemental talents at your disposal right from the start?

If you are rushing through the game and prefer not to get involved in the grueling task of carrying out specialization quests, you might want to simply build a pure elemental Mage.

The pure elemental mage gives you a lot of benefit as you can target the elemental weakness of most enemies. However, it doesn’t take anything from the Spirit tree – you can either invest in the tree afterwards or play with another supportive mage.

Whichever one you choose, you’ll have a mix of offense AoE skills at your disposal, and it will only come down to exploiting the weakness of your opponents.

The downside to such an approach is that you won’t have much flexibility in your role – you’ll have to play as a pure damage dealer and depend on other characters to protect you.

That’s how a mage is generally supposed to play, but in DA you’ll fight plenty of enemies at once, and sometimes a bit of independence is necessary.

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