This forum is an all-inclusive guide to everything mage. Let me start out by saying that mage is a very hard class to pull off and requires patience, just because you will spend a lot of time sitting and recovering SP.
PvM (Player vs. Monster) Strategies
Hit and Run: This is your PRIME mage strategy, learn it, master it, love it. You'll learn past lvl. 10 that all of the magic skills you use all have a waiting time after they are used until you can use them again. So what you do is run until the enemy is in one of the corners of the screen, cast your spell, keep running (all while keeping the enemy on screen), then when your spell recovers, repeat.
YOU CAN CAST WHILE WALKING! and mages should abuse it! I saw so many mages who get hit a lot by foes.
here how to:
1) target something, and hit the spell you want to cast!
2) immediatly after you hit the spell button you can move in one direction (just hold the pad in 1 direction) !
3) unfortunately you can't change direction (that would be a lil too OP) and if you stop walking you can't move anymore. still with this simple trick you barely get hit by foes even on aggro maps like the one with flora and bears, or with foes you need more than 1 hit to kill. Also for some reason foes get "tricked". It seems they have troubles following you if you do this trick.
Tip courtesy of soba.
Cast and Hit: This can be done and I've seen it done very well but it is generally only done when your magic skills are limited. This build requires str, agi, and vit (or lots of potions). Basically start with a spell, start hitting the enemy, cast when your spell is available again, hit more, repeat. Not recommended but doable if SP recovery annoys you.
STR: There is no use for str. Besides early levels when you need to hit enemies, this has no purpose.
AGI: There is no use for agi besides flee. Flee is the chance that enemies may not hit as hard. If you are bad at the hit and run battle strategy you may want to consider building it, otherwise, no.
VIT: If you are a hit and run mage, I would say build very little VIT at all (maybe a total of 20 pts by the time you are max lvl). Have some cards that will add to your HP (shoes or headgear cards) but other than that, just always carry potions. ;D
INT: If you aren't building this up, you should just stop now and go home. This increases your SP and MATK, your two home spots. Your goal as mage: this should be as high as possible.
SPR: This builds your MDEF (something you need considering if you use hit and run, this is the only way enemies will hit you) and your SP recovery. I recommend building this at least slightly (around 30-40 once max level). If you wish to not put a lot of points into this, I at least recommend you get MDEF cards and level up your SP recovery skill. They are both vital to a mage.
This is the Mage skill tree. Before you do anything, make sure you are educated in the effect of elementals. A guide is here: http://valkyrieupris...lemental-guide/
There are a few questions that arise when skill building:
What element should I build first?
After doing a count on the beginning quest monsters up until level 20 I found that the majority goes: Wind, Earth, and Water. Meaning that the most used elemental spells go in order from most used to least: Earth, Fire, and Wind. So really, Earth is the one most recommended but really, pick your poison. My words of advice though, is always build a neutral skill (Napalm Beat).
Should I upgrade my bolts?
Well here's the deal. You need at least 3+ upgrade bolts to unlock advanced mage skills as a wizard (soul strike, storm gust, meteor storm, storm gust, and heaven's drive) and I doubt you want to spend wizard job points upgrading your bolts. But do remember that you get a skill reset upon becoming a wizard. So my best advice is either upgrade one bolt to 10 (preferably fire bolt) or upgrade two bolts and always have an element advantage. The choice is yours.
How non-bolt elemental atks, safety wall, and energy coat?
None of the extra element skills have much potential except fire wall, it is something you may want to consider. It is nice because it does a few hits to an enemy coming at you but I imagine it might be weird in this RO version because sometimes they run away from YOU. Safety wall is nice if you are a cast and hit guild, not a hit and run build. It lends you protection in a one cell space but you can't move from that space. However if WoE is ever implemented, it is definitely worth looking into. Energy coat does help a bit but like I said before if you are doing hit and run it doesn't matter much, sometimes it is nice to have something to fall back on though.
Where can I farm staff runes?
So far, here is some confirmed monsters that drop green staffs.
Staff: VS Poringring lvl. 9
Hypnotist's Staff: Smoke Spore lvl. 15
Destruction Rod: Muka lvl. 28
Mighty Staff: VS Thorn Muka lvl. 32
Yggdrasil: VVS Thorn Muka lvl. 33
If you are a pc RO veteran I'm sure one of the FIRST things you are freaking out about is armor (that was all me too). However I will tell you that in this game the armor you should aim for is the highest level req you can get of the rune crafts. The rune made armor/weapons is by far the best in the game and since you have little choice, always aim for VVVS of all of your equips.
Since you can few equip options and cards are so easy for you to obtain, there is no reason you should be without good cards in your equips. Here are some of my own recommendations and help about common card questions.
Forest Golem Card: def +1-3, at this point in the game, this is the most vital card to any build. I even got 3, rank 3 in my own armor. This is a highly recommended card.
Blood Ivy Card: MATK +1-3, if I were to ever have a love affair with a card, it would be this one. Load your baby up with these and forget any cards that give you extra damage on enemies. Because in case you were wondering, this doesn't power up your magic spells, just your damage towards them.
Elemental Cards: This is still under a set of testing, but an elemental card boosts your damage against the ENEMY not your attack. So for instance, you have a 3% boost for earth and you are fighting an earth monster, your damage towards them will go up. Not the damage of your Earth Spike.
Headgear and Shoes:
I'm not real specific with these because all of your options either increase HP or SP. Like I said, at least have +200 HP in some form because you will have little to none but if you insist on some SP help, go ahead.
At this current point in time, there are no cards I've found that are particularly helpful towards mage. My only recommendation is the Quve Card which boosts flee. Flee is your chance of having an enemy miss, so it /kind of/ increases your defense.
So here's the deal. Until about 25-28, you should be following the quests religiously. When you hit around these levels, you'll see that you kind of hit a speed bump. You'll find that all of the monsters you kill, for it to work best, have to be slow moving monsters. But Kotbias, VS Kotbias, and VS Scorpions are extremely fast walking and hard hitters. My advice for you is just to train on VS Thorn Mukas until you hit 31. Make sure you've got a good fire bolt behind you and grind away. I promise that once you past that hill though, more quests open up and it isn't so bad anymore.
Still have burning questions about your mage build? As you can tell, it's not rocket science. People are encouraged to post information they find relevant or contradictory to the information I have presented here.