World of Warcraft players will be able to craft their own legendary items in this week’s Shadowlands expansion, giving themselves access to the most powerful items the game has to offer. Each legendary item starts the same way: You take a base item and then collect materials to imbue it with additional power. You can only wear one, and it can’t be a weapon or a trinket. But what those items can do varies wildly from class to class.
To get started on your first legendary item, you need to reach maximum level and complete the introduction to Torghast, the endless dungeon in The Maw zone. Once you defeat Warden Skoldus in that one-time experience, you’ll receive a key; this starts a quest that introduces you to the Runecarver, the guy who’s going to help you learn to upgrade your armour.
To get started with that crafting, you need a Memory of the Runecarver recipe that gives a quest for the specific legendary power you seek. Memories drop from almost everywhere: PvP, raids, dungeons, covenant quests and events, rare bosses, and other quests. If you find one, you can return it to the Runecarver, who will then have the ability to add that power to a piece of armour. Some powers are only available for particular armour slots. To start, each class has four Memories available, plus four for their spec and generic powers that are available to everyone.
WoW Shadowlands legendary items
Almost all legendary powers come from previous skills and bonuses that existed for your class in other expansions. Legion legendary items make a big comeback here, as do Azerite traits from Battle for Azeroth and set bonuses from previous expansions. Some are brand-new: For example, hunters can craft a legendary that turns their slowing Tar Trap ability into a fiery pulse of AOE damage when the player tosses a Flare on top of it.
Once you have the memory you want to build upon, you’ll need a base item to upgrade. These are crafted, so you can make them on an alt or buy them from the Auction House. (The recipes drop all over the Shadowlands.) You don’t actually need the profession to turn the base item into your Legendary item.
The level of the base item determines the level of the legendary, but the legendary powers themselves don’t change, and you can upgrade it later at a slightly increased cost. This means it’s generally worth crafting what you want immediately when you have the necessary items, unless you have the materials to craft the more-powerful version all at once. Currently, there are four ranks of legendary base items, ranging from item level 190 to 235.
Related: level up fast with our WoW Shadowlands leveling guide
Once you’ve got your base item, you need a player Inscriptionist to craft two Missives for you, which determine what secondary stats (critical strike, haste, versatility, etc.) the item will have. You also need Soul Ash from running Torghast; how much you need depends on how powerful the base item is, and you get more Ash the further you get in the endless dungeon. There are two wings, and each level gets harder and gives a little less ash. It’s theoretically possible to collect the necessary Soul Ash for a level 190 item at the start of the second week of the expansion; most folks will take longer than that. A 235 item costs almost five times as much.
When you’re ready to complete an item, you can seek out the Runecarver just inside the Torghast entrance. He’ll help you put it all together. If you need to upgrade it later, you’ll bring him a higher-level base item and additional Soul Ash. Enjoy your newfound power!