A Guide to the Mage Class in Dragon Age 2: Primal Spell Tree
The Primal spell tree is one of my favorites, mainly for the lightning spells. It also has a defensive spell to help reduce the damage you take.
Stonefist: Stonefist causes physical damage and also has the ability to knock enemies down. With the upgrade, it causes extra damage against disoriented targets and receives bonuses to damage and physical force. It's not an ability I'd find myself using a lot, unless it's to take advantage of the disorient effect.
Petrify: This is useful if you need to take an enemy out of the equation for a short while as it renders them unable to move and attack attack for a period of time. The downside is it makes them more resistant to damage, though the upgrade negates this somewhat.
Rock Armor: Honestly, mages should not be getting hit if the tank is doing a good job. However, if you do find that mages are getting hit, then do feel free to take this spell as it increases a mage's armor.
Chain Lightning: This spell is pretty useful but again, like with Fireball, you'll want to purchase it so you can access Tempest. The upgrade for this spell makes it more effective, and gives it damage bonuses against staggered targets.
Tempest: Instead of hitting one enemy and then having the lightning affect other enemies, this spell allows you to set the spell's radius yourself and it is quite large. It can also stun enemies like Chain Lightning can. With the upgrade, the lightning strikes happen more frequently. It's highly recommended.
Galvanism: This basically boosts the effects of all the spells in the tree, so take it if you're using Primal spells a lot.