We’ve added a lot of content to World of Warcraft since players first set foot on Pandaria—so much, in fact, that if you’re primarily interested in getting to the newest content as quickly as possible, it can be a challenge to find the quickest path through it all. Worry not! Let us be your own personal grummle guide, helping you navigate through your first days and weeks at level 90.
All the Time in the World (Seriously)
Probably the quickest, most effective, and most straightforward method of gearing up is by going to the Timeless Isle. This brand-new area is lost in time, shrouded in mystery . . . and practically smothered with loot.
Before you start adventuring on the Isle, you should speak with Chromie in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms. She’ll give you an introductory quest that sends you to the island and leads to a follow-up quest that, after a little exploration, rewards you with a Timeless Cache. When used, this Timeless Cache will instantly give you a random piece of Item Level (ilvl) 496 gear appropriate to your current loot specialization.
Once you’ve gotten the lay of the land, it’s time to start exploring! Hidden all over the Timeless Isle are powerful creatures (many of which can be taken on solo despite their imposing presence), chests filled with treasure, puzzles, dynamic group events, and all sorts of other activities. Many different rewards await, but for the purposes of gearing up quickly, there are three in particular to look for.
The first are Mogu Runes of Fate, which you can use in the Throne of Thunder raid for an extra shot at loot. The second are Timeless Coins, a new currency unique to the Timeless Isle. You can purchase many valuable items with these coins, including additional Timeless Caches. Finally, as you adventure across the island, you will inevitably come across Timeless armor tokens.
These tokens work much like the Timeless Cache, in that using one of the appropriate armor type will grant you a piece of gear that fits your current loot specialization. However, unlike the Timeless Cache, these give you items for a specific slot. For example, you might find a token that’s specifically for cloth bracers, or for mail shoulders, or for a trinket, and so on. You’ll always know roughly what you’re getting when you use one of these tokens.
Perhaps more importantly, they’re also Bind on Account. Pick up a token you don’t need? Got an alt you’d like to gear up, but would rather go exploring on your main? No problem. Thanks to the wonders of modern mailbox technology, you’ll be able to whisk that token off to any other character on the same account and realm, who can then use it to generate their own piece of ilvl 496 gear.
Things don’t stop at 496, either. Particularly lucky (or persistent) players might find themselves in possession of a Burden of Eternity, an extremely powerful artifact that, when used on a Timeless armor token, causes it to create an even more powerful item rated at ilvl 535. Get your hands on a few of those pieces and you should be more than prepared to participate in the Siege of Orgrimmar raid.
Your Reputation Precedes You
Of course, the Timeless Isle isn’t the only way to gear up. As of 5.4, we’ve made some big changes to the older ilvl 489 reputation gear—that’d be the Golden Lotus, Klaxxi, August Celestials, and Shado-Pan gear. All of this gear is now available for Justice Points regardless of your reputation with the respective factions.
The fastest way to earn Justice Points is by running dungeons (particularly Heroic dungeons), but they can be earned through Scenarios and even converted from Honor points if you prefer (though you’re probably better off just buying the Honor gear . . . more on that later). Once you’ve got some Justice Points saved up, head off to the quartermaster at Niuzao Temple in Townlong Steppes to get some sweet, sweet epics.
Valor Points still have their place as well. For just 250 Valor points, you can add four Item Levels to a piece of Epic gear, and you can upgrade any piece twice. If you’re looking to gear up in a hurry, that’ll probably give you the most bang for your buck. Even if you don’t have anything you’d like to upgrade just yet, it’s likely more worthwhile to hang onto your Valor until you do.
Or Maybe Just Stab Someone
Rather dive into some PvP? Perfect. Patch 5.4 brings a brand spanking new PvP season, and that means brand spanking new PvP gear. Honor Points can now be used to purchase ilvl 496 PvP gear, and Conquest Point gear starts off at 522. You can, of course, jump into Rated PvP and start earning Conquest Points at any time you like, but it’s probably wise to start off with some Random Battlegrounds to earn some Honor Gear.
Thanks to some changes in Patch 5.3, non-PvP gear can still work well for entry-level PvP. If you like, you can head to the Timeless Isle or even run some dungeons for a few pieces. It’ll still probably be fastest to earn the Honor gear, but it’s always good to have a little variety in your diet, right?
Content Item Level Requirements
- ilvl 435 required for Heroic dungeons
- ilvl 460 required for Mogu’shan Vaults (Raid Finder)
- ilvl 470 required for Heart of Fear and Terrace of Endless Spring (Raid Finder)
- ilvl 480 required for Throne of Thunder (Raid Finder)
- ilvl 496 required for Siege of Orgrimmar (Raid Finder)
Did we miss something? Share your gearing tips in the comments below.