How to Upgrade Gear in The War Within

The War Within will maintain the same item upgrade system as Dragonflight, with no fundamental changes planned. Previously in Dragonflight, players needed to collect Awakened Crests and Dreaming Crests to upgrade their gear. Players will now obtain a new currency that operates on the same principle - Harbinger Crests.

In this guide, we will cover all the necessary and currently known information about Harbinger Crests, how many can be farmed effectively, and how to use them to upgrade gear.

The War Within Upgrading Materials.

First, it is important to note that crests alone will not suffice to upgrade your gear. Similar to how it worked in Dragonflight, players will need two types of currency to upgrade their gear — crests and another new currency similar to Flightstones. Unfortunately, we do not yet know what it will be called, but it is an undeniable fact that such a currency will exist. This currency can be obtained by completing quests or world quests, as well as any open-world activities. It is also likely that players will be able to earn it by defeating raid bosses and completing Mythic+ dungeons.

Harbinger Crests, on the other hand, will be much more valuable because this currency will be capped weekly, and the most desirable ones can only be obtained from Mythic+ dungeons and raids. The quality and level of these crests will heavily depend on the difficulty of the Mythic+ dungeon and raid in which you receive them. This makes Harbinger Crests an extremely valuable currency in the first weeks of Season 1, and they should be used wisely.

Gear Upgrading Paths

In Season 1 of The War Within, crests will be the primary method for upgrading gear. However, the upgrade of each item will depend on the type of the item itself. Therefore, items can be upgraded multiple times, but each upgrade will require either more crests or a higher tier of crests. Here are the groups into which the items can be divided:

Types of Gear

Item Level Range


654 to 676


667 to 689


680 to 702


693 to 715


706 to 722


719 to 728

Now let's take a detailed look at all the methods for obtaining crests. There are several ways players can acquire crests. Understanding these methods will help players maximize their crest acquisition and efficiently upgrade their gear.

  • Weathered Harbinger Crest: These crests can be obtained by completing regular and world quests, defeating bosses in the Nerub'ar Palace LFR, and participating in Mythic+ instances up to level +3.
  • Carved Harbinger Crest: These crests are acquired through specific quests, defeating bosses in the Nerub'ar Palace on Normal difficulty, and participating in Mythic+ instances up to level +3.
  • Runed Harbinger Crest: These crests are earned by defeating bosses in the Nerub'ar Palace on Heroic difficulty and participating in Mythic+ instances from level +4 up to level +8.
  • Gilded Harbinger Crest: These crests are obtained by defeating bosses in the Nerub'ar Palace on Mythic difficulty and participating in Mythic+ instances from level +9 and higher.

As before, raids and Mythic+ dungeons remain the primary source of Harbinger Crests in The War Within, but they are not the only source. You can also obtain them by completing regular quests, world quests, or world events, although their tier will be significantly lower. When it comes to upgrading gear to the highest possible level (Mythic raid level), the only way to obtain this currency will be through high-level Mythic+ dungeons and Mythic raids.

Upgrade Discount System

Since Crests are rather difficult to obtain, it would be frustrating to use a large number of them to upgrade equipment that will soon need to be replaced. To resolve this issue, a unique discount system has been implemented into the game. Here’s how it works: if you have already upgraded any piece of equipment, you will receive a significant discount when upgrading gear that goes into the same slot as the previously upgraded item. This system allows players to use Crests more flexibly, enabling them to upgrade intermediate items even if they know those items will eventually be replaced.

Harbinger Crest Categories and How to Use Them

All the types of Harbinger Crests we discussed earlier will be useful to you throughout the entire season because upgrading a single item will require several types of crests. Each crest can be used for multiple types of equipment according to the table:

Crest type

Upgradable Items

Weathered Harbinger Crest

Higher item level Adventurer gear and lower item level Veteran gear.

Carved Harbinger Crest

Higher item level Veteran gear and lower item level Champion gear.

Runed Harbinger Crest

Higher item level Champion gear and lower item level Heroic gear.

Gilded Harbinger Crest

Heroic and Mythic gear.

How to Craft Gear Using Enchanted Harbinger Crests

Enchanted Harbinger Crests are used to upgrade player-crafted gear. Crafted gear typically has a relatively low item level, but it can be upgraded using Enchanted Harbinger Crests. These crests can only be made by players who have chosen the Enchanting profession. You don't have to craft them yourself; you can ask a friend, guild member, or any other skilled enchanter to create them for you. Here is the list of required ingredients for each type of Enchanted Harbinger Crest:

To create an enchanted version of the crest, you will need another type of Harbinger Crest. For each corresponding alternative, you also need to acquire its nascent version. Here is how you can do this:

Below we will provide a table showing how item levels vary depending on the type of Enchanted Crest.

Crest type

Item Level Upgrade

Enchanted Weathered Harbinger Crest


Enchanted Runed Harbinger Crest


Enchanted Gilded Harbinger Crest


As seen in the table above, each Enchanted Harbinger Crest has a minimum and maximum item level to which an item can be upgraded. This depends solely on the skills of the crafter who makes the item for you, and the enchanter's skill level does not affect this.

Overall Conclusion

The new item upgrade system introduced in Dragonflight remains the best one to date. It gives players flexibility in upgrading items and allows them to obtain high-level BiS items without significant restrictions. All that remains is to obtain the necessary item.

However, sometimes obtaining the item is much harder than upgrading it, and that's where we can help. Check out our services for The War Within expansion. Here you will find everything you need to upgrade your character's gear to any level, making the task significantly easier. Gear up with Boosthive!

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