Top 10 spells in Dragon Age Origins
10. Curse of Mortality - Cast this on anything you want you dead quick and then stick a melee rogue on its ass. Especially useful when another class that can and will heal is around, as it disables heals on the target. If you're a melee heavy group, say with a rogue and arcane mage, this little spell will wipe even yellow named mobs off the map before they have a chance to see what's going on.
9. Force-field - Incredibly useful for both offensive and defensive casting. While some may consider force-field tanking cheap (myself among them), this spell isn't just for saving a party member. Casting this on a dangerous target can buy you time to deal with some smaller things, or in some cases, the other dangerous target, like multiple ogres. Sure, you can't harm it like you can with paralysis, but then again, paralysis can't both be used on friend and foe to great effect alike.
8. Mass Paralysis - It may have a cast time, but nothing beats being able to completely disable a massive group of enemies for a nice long time. In addition to keeping pesky targets in place, they can still take damage, so you can stack other aoe effects on top of them, like tempest, blizzard, etc. All in all, one of the better ways in the game to control large numbers of enemies. If you don't like the cast time, you can use the glyph of paralysis and repulsion spell combo to the same effect.
7. Waking nightmare - The only thing better than preventing a large group of enemies from attacking you for a while is if you can get them to do you some good in the meantime. For this, waking nightmare makes my top 10 list as it targets can not only take damage, but they'll attack each other or take your side for a while. One of the nastier control spells indeed.
6. Fireball - One of the nastiest spells in the game if used right, and even nastier is used wrong. Never leave this on your mages combat tactics menu, or you'll blow up your whole party. It's not even the damage or range that makes this spell great, but the fact that you can do moderate damage with a moderate damage over time effect while knocking everything in the are down. It's no paralysis, but it's an effective tool for controlling more dangerous ranged enemies. One of the main reasons it makes my top 10 is that you get all this with a relatively short cooldown.
5. Mind Blast - This spell is essential. If you have more than one mage, you should have more than one mind blast. Switching off mind blast stuns between characters aside, this spell is fantastic when you've managed to pull a group on you, get flanked by surprise, or even want to bring a rogue out of stealth. It's the first ability in it's line, so the cost to have it is practically nothing, and on top of that, it starts one of the most effective spell lines in the game. The stun lasts long enough for a warrior to taunt, or for you to gain distance and freeze/fireball/control any unexpected group, or long enough to get your tank facing 20 mobs back up to full health.
4. Crushing Prison - Take one mob out of the fight from the start, and let them take damage while you're at it. That's what this spell does. If the mob is weaker in health, like a mage, they'll more than likely die before the effect wears off. Cast this spell and whatever you put it on is pretty much something you don't have to worry about anymore. Even if the mob can't be paralyzed (like a boss creature for example) the spell will still do the spirit damage, making it a great use in large group and single target battles alike. Oh, and lol at Loghain never even getting a swing in.
3. Cone of cold - This spell has been called cheap on numerous occasions. I can understand why. The ultimate in short range crowd control, this nasty little spell will completely disable a good number of opponents for a good period of time. Not only does it provide incredible close range crowd control, but you get the added bonus of every target now being shatter vulnerable. Few things beat using this spell on a nice big bunch of melee and then having your rogue go down the line shattering them one by one.
2. Mana Clash - I have no doubt placing this spell this highly will confuse some. What makes this spell not awesome is that it's only effective against targets with mana. What makes it worthy of being the second best spell in the game, in my personal opinion, is what it does when your target DOES have mana. This spell doesn't just destroy casters... it one shots them. That yellow level emmisary way in the back? One shot. That pathetic blood mage in the corner? One shot. This spell can do absurd amounts of damage (for instance, I hit a red level arcane horror for 850), and it'll do it in an area. The first time you instantly kill 3 mages hanging out too close together and get all their demon buddies down to 10% is a great moment. Oh yeah, and it'll get you the heavy hitter achievement as a mage, since end game it pretty much doesn't ever hit for less than 400.
1. Blood wound - What if I said you could have an aoe crushing prison, and all you had to do was pay for the spell with health instead of mana? Well, that's what blood wound is. Not only does it completely disable a large group of enemies (and I mean large, it's radius is huge), it does significant damage to them as well, and doesn't prevent even more damage. Cast a blizzard, tempest, even storm of the century, then blood wound everything in it and they can't get out. It's the ultimate in damage/crowd control. All this, and considering it's power, an absurdly short cooldown. Sure, the two spells leading up it are situational or completely useless (no thanks, I won't be killing my other party members), but it's worth it for this. Start any fight with this and you've all ready got the upper hand. This is why bloodmages should be feared.
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