PvP Starter Guide for Gear and Talents (Shadowlands 9.0.2)

Last updated on Feb 04, 2021 at 05:55 by Mysticall 6 comments

Table of Contents



This guide covers the basics of PvP, with an emphasis on explaining gear and Conquest Points. For more advanced guidance in PvP matters, please check our PvP class guides.


PvP Gear in Shadowlands

Although, strictly speaking, there is PvP gear in World of Warcraft, the only way it differs from PvE gear is in name and appearance. This is because there no longer are "PvP stats" (like the Resilience of long ago), and all items, be they PvE and PvP, have essentially the same kind of stats on them (your spec's primary stat and a combination of secondary stats). This means that even if you obtained all your character's gear through dungeons and raids, you can be just as efficient and competitive in PvP as someone who has obtained their gear through PvP-oriented means.

There exists a variety of ways to obtain "PvE" gear in World of Warcraft, all of which is beyond the scope of this guide. Instead, we will focus on explaining how to obtain PvP gear.

With the release of Shadowlands, there are now PvP vendors that sell gear. This gear can be bought with Honor or Conquest Points. You can also get one PvP item each week from the Great Vault.


Honor and Conquest Points

Honor is a currency that can be used to buy gear from one of the PvP vendors. This can be earned from any forms of PvP, even non-rated PvP matches. You will also need Honor to upgrade your gear to higher ranks.

There are several ways you can earn Conquest Points. The primary way is to PvP! After winning a rated Arena or rated Battleground game, you will get Conquest Points. If you want to see how many points you have, navigate to your currency tab. Honor will also be earned after winning or losing a rated match, and can also be earned from normal battlegrounds or skirmishes.

There is a weekly Conquest Point cap of 550 points (see more below), visible on your PvP tab. Once you reach the weekly cap, you cannot get any more until reset day. The most expensive pieces normally cost more than 550 Conquest Points, so it will take you a few weeks to get items in important slots such as chest, legs, weapon, or helm.

If you do not want to do Arena for Conquest Points, that is okay! There are weekly quests near the PvP vendors in Oribos that make require you to earn Honor through various activities (rated Battlegrounds, epic Battlegrounds, skirmishes) and completing the quest will reward you Conquest and Honor Points.

It is very important to note that the Conquest Cap allows you to claw back and earn all the Conquest Points you may have missed out on all the way back to the start of the season. That means that in addition to a weekly Conquest Cap of 550, you should consider a total Conquest Cap of 550*weeks_since_season_start. That means that an alt you get to max level half-way through the season will be able to "instantly" acquire all the Conquest Points that could have been attained since the season started. For characters that are up to date with their Conquest Point gain (so which have been acquiring 550 each week since the start of the season), this does not change anything and they can only obtain an additional 550 on a new week.


Great Vault

Aside from the gear you can get from the PvP vendors, you also receive another item for earning enough Honor in rated PvP. This item, however, is not rewarded immediately. Instead you receive it at the end of the week from the Great Vault. The more Honor you earn from rated PvP, the more options you get in the Vault (up to 3 item choices for 6,250 Honor).

The PvP gear you receive has an item level based on your PvP bracket. This gear is based on the highest bracket in which you won a game that week. Below, we list the brackets and the skill ratings they cover, as well as what item level you can expect from the weekly Vault.

Bracket Name Skill Rating Weekly Vault Item Level
Unranked 0-1399 200
Combatant 1400-1599 207
Challenger 1600-1799 213
Rival 1800-2099 220
Duelist 2100-2399 226
Gladiator 2400+ 226 Gear + 233 Weapon

Upgrading Gear

Upgrading gear is a new addition in Shadowlands and allows you to use Honor to upgrade gear. There are different restrictions to upgrading gear, based on what type of gear you are upgrading.


Upgrading Honor Gear

Honor gear is bought from the vendor at item level 158 (rank 1). You can then use more Honor to upgrade these pieces of gear. The restriction for upgrading gear is Renown level with your covenant. Here are the Renown levels you need to upgrade Honor gear:

  1. Renown 0 — upgrade gear to rank 3
  2. Renown 7 — upgrade gear to rank 5
  3. Renown 22 — upgrade gear to rank 7

Below we list the item level that corresponds to each Honor rank.

  1. Rank 1 — 158 item level
  2. Rank 2 — 164 item level
  3. Rank 3 — 171 item level
  4. Rank 4 — 177 item level
  5. Rank 5 — 184 item level
  6. Rank 6 — 190 item level
  7. Rank 7 — 197 item level

Upgrading Conquest Gear

Conquest gear is bought with Conquest Points. However, it is not upgraded using Conquest Points, but still with Honor. In order to be able to upgrade Conquest gear to certain item levels, you must have the required ranking.

  1. Unranked — 200 item level (base item level of Conquest Gear
  2. Combatant (1400-1599) — 207 item level
  3. Challenger (1600-1799) — 213 item level
  4. Rival (1800-2099) — 220 item level
  5. Duelist (2100-2399) — 226 item level
  6. Elite (2400+) — 226 item level + 233 weapon

PvP Talents & War Mode

On your talents tab, you have the possibility to select 3 PvP talents out of a pool of many. PvP talents are typically only available in PvP content, but War Mode allows you to also benefit from them in the open world.


War Mode

War Mode can be toggled on and off in any major city. When it is enabled, you are able to use your PvP talents in the open world, and because you will be fighting enemies of the other faction, you also get an experience bonus while leveling. Do note that this makes you vulnerable to being killed by players of the other faction.


Bonuses of War Mode

Enabling War Mode provides the following perks.

  • The ability to use all PvP talents in the outdoor world. You do not need to be in PvP combat to use them.
  • You gain additional experience while leveling.
  • There are PvP achievements you can earn.
  • At maximum level, you get a World Quest reward bonus.


  • 04 Feb. 2021: Updated for Shadowlands.
  • 10 Apr. 2020: Updated PvP Gear Scaling section.
  • 23 Sep. 2019: Updated PvP rewards.
    • Updated War Mode bonuses.
  • 01 Oct. 2018: Guide added.
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