For the sake of keeping it specific, let's focus on Hungerdome, which I think this is where you created this thread from. "Fighting this class there is no situation where they are on the back foot. In the open field they kite you with infinite CC and do solid damage + a dot. You cannot possibly close distance and kill them." This is not exactly true, it's the team around the archmage that can make this possible. The 'infinite' CC you are talking about actually does not come from the archmage very much, more it's teammates (like warden trapmaster stun spam, stakes and other aoe CC from other classes).
Closing the distance is quite easy, good teams can do this, rotate mobility cooldowns with pulls etc. pretty basic team coordination. "In confined spaces you are permanently heal debuffed, slowed, Ice armor debuffed and susceptible to chaos orb cheese hitting your whole group for 4-5k and shatter storm deleting your group for a similar amount."
I agree the black ice is and incredibly powerful spell, putting a field that people just have to touch to get PHM debuffed is strong. Ice armor debuff is just like any other debuff in the game, this one though only benefits the frostweaver, since it's pure ice armor break. If we look at the Warden in this case, they keep up permanent physical armor break, which benefits a whole range of other classes, or the confessor who has elemental armor break on basic attacks, which other elemental damage dealers also benefit from.
Shatterstorm doesn't delete people, it does high damage when paired with armor break + a good weapon, but is aoe circle is fairly small, and you can easily dodge out of it, just like the vindicators divine light that you previously stated.
Chaos orb is very strong yes, IF you channel it 100%, taking around 3 seconds of channel time. Now this is very hard to pull off if you are being focused, and in the world of aoe CC spam (Warden traps, fury etc.), your channel will get broken a lot and no chaos orb goes off if you get interrupted while channeling - what I am trying to say is, if you get chaos orbed, that is your own fault.
The slow is decent, but gets overwrited by the slow stake from other archetypes. "Shatter storm plus ice stores = big damage"
Now you don't really wanna spam use your ice stores;
1 - You will lose your 10% crit buff from the archemage talents.
2 - If you have no ice store, every ice weave costs 200 mana = you go oom instantly.
3 - If you spam so much that you use ulti purely for mana = you die.
Also the volatile ice proc from shatterstorm has an internal cooldown, so you dont get RNG'd to death.
I almost never cast more than 1 or 2 frigid ice through free weaving, simply cause the cost versus the output is not worth it.
Frigid ice is not a reliable aoe knockdown spamable thing, it's very costly, and for it to knock down, first you have to root the first with a frigid ice (meaning they have to step on it), and then after the retaliate, you have to make them step on another frigid ice, for it to knock down. "Ranged Execute: This class has a ranged 5 second CD 2 hit execute what else needs to be said?" It's weird to me that they didn't include more executes in the archetypes, like the Titan would be an obvious choice.
Either way, the cast time for each execute power, is around 1.5 seconds - and it's bodyblockable since it's single target. And again, in the world of aoe CC, pulls and what-not, this is not 100% reliable. Theoretically then yes, it's super strong, in practice it's another story. "It has no mobility skill: With the prevalence of stakes in the meta this is not really an issue as the enemies are always slowed so you can just walk away." Exactly, it doesn't have any mobility skill, so you have to rely on your teammates to help you out - stakes is not in the toolkit of the Archmage.
- It also means you have to use at least half your brain, to not spam all dodges out at the same time. "Its in leather: All classes give and take true damage in this game." Like all other classes as you say, since there are so many armor breaks. But you can die in a few seconds if you're not careful - exactly because you have 0 armor the entire time.
Where mail and plate users in the end can achieve more than the 20% armor breaks that are applied, archmage will be at 0% throughout the game. "It has no defensive skills: This can be corrected with master of focus giving mana shield. In addition with a 27 second CD ultimate that gives 5 second damage reduction you can reduce nearly all damage you receive."
Well, Mana shield is a 1300 barrier, and we all know how faster 1300 is gone in teamfights with dots etc. And ultimate giving 5 second damage reduction, is exactly the same as any other ulti, confessor have 2, alpha warrior almost 3, etc. "Conclusion: This class has absolutely no situation where it may under perform. Melee have not a hope of hitting them for more than 2-3 seconds continuously. If they can even get there. It is almost impossible to kill and played correctly can put huge pressure on groups." I think many classes has no place where it under performs if played correctly. Melee not being able to stay on the archmage is not really an archmage direct problem, that's more the melee players, the melee players' team, and the archmage team that prevents them. It's not like the archmage is permanently immune to CC itself?
My main question is, if it's impossible to kill, and so very easy to do damage on, why is it not in every group like the warden?
Like Van_Zant said, yes the glass cannon does damage.
It literally has nothing else but damage, anti healing, some crowd control (like every class in the game), ultimate and dodge rolls as defensives.