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WoWJan 11, 2021 2:00 pm CT

How to catch up on Renown in Shadowlands

In Shadowlands, each week we progress further with Renown, which has a weekly cap. So far that cap has increased by 3 each week, but starting the week of January 19th, it will only increase by 2. On a character that has been earning the weekly cap, that has been easy enough. But what about a new character? How are they supposed to hit the cap of 21, or 24, or however high it has reached now?

That is where the Renown catchup system comes in. Blizzard has implemented a great system to earn extra Renown, not limited to just the 2 or 3 a character who was capped can earn. And the sources for the Renown are varied. What are these sources? And why is the Renown so important? Let’s take a look.

Who needs the Renown catchup?

There are three times when Renown catchup is necessary. The most likely scenario are alts. After playing a main, and getting into the groove of the expansion, you want another character or twenty. You start them off thinking they are far behind, no chance to catch up. But no! With a little bit of time investment, and depending what you do with the alt, at this point in Shadowlands they will begin the campaign with more Renown than your main did.

The second reason you’ll need the catch up is because you took some time off, on your main, or any character. Don’t worry if you were gone from WoW for a week — you’re not a week “behind.” It isn’t just there for your second or third time through, the way other catch-up mechanics like Threads of Fate work. The game wants to gate you to the current maximum cap.

And the third reason you need to catch up, even if you had been playing to the full extent every week — you may want to switch Covenants. If you were to switch from Kyrian to Venthyr, and then back to Kyrian, there is a bit of a punishment to switching back to Kyrian. But when you first switch over to Venthyr, Shadowlands wants you to catch up with this Covenant as quickly as possible. Your Renown total won’t carry over, but getting back to the benchmark where you were to start will go a lot quicker.

What are the catchup sources for Renown?

Where does the extra Renown come from? In the words of the late, great Gul’dan, “everything!” At this point, if you play the character, it is almost impossible not to earn Renown. The quests to earn Renown normally — Return Lost Souls to collect souls from the Maw, and Replenish the Reservoir to earn 1,000 Anima — are still available. Not only that, but they can be provided more than once during the week. Repeat them for extra Renown, and more Freed Souls.

The quests in Oribos to run dungeons that provide reputation for a Covenant of your choice now also provide Renown. Queueing for a dungeon or LFR — Renown. Completing Mythic and Mythic+ dungeons — yes, Renown. The world boss World Quest — two Renown. Completing Callings — believe it or not, Renown. The quests from Bolvar to go into Torghast that reward Soul Ash — also rewards Renown. And even in Castle Nathria, a raid boss has a chance to drop Renown.

There is also PVP listed as a source for Renown, but for Anima, this required a win to be given as a reward. If you need the Renown catchup and you enjoy PVP, dive in and Renown could be rewarded.

Then each chapter of the Campaign rewards Renown. The week of January 12th will see the 9th and final available chapter, resulting in 9 renown through this series.

For alts who level through Threads of Fate, there is a bonus. Each zone completed to one hundred percent will have an immediate quest that follows up, rewarding a Renown. This was not available in the beginning, when the Renown cap was lower, but now is a guarantee for all zones. Additionally, for all characters, regardless of how they leveled, the quest to open up the Covenant will reward a Renown. All characters, either switching Covenants, or just completing leveling, will begin with 1 Renown, and those who used Threads of Fate will have 1 for every zone they completed through that method.

Why is Renown important?

Does Renown matter? If you want to see the full campaign story, you need to reach Renown 22. Perhaps there will be more story later on, requiring a higher level of it. One reason to have a character in each Covenant, or to switch into all four Covenants, is to see all four stories. There are also a lot of cosmetics, from armor, to pets, to mounts, that can only be bought when a certain Renown is reached with a Covenant. If cosmetics aren’t important to you, then this might not seem necessary.

Soul Binds have more rows unlocked with higher levels of Renown, meaning you have access to more Conduits and more special powers. This where your Renown will affect how powerful you are.

And finally, we are still lacking on details, but at some point flying will be coming to Shadowlands. Blizzard Executive Producer John Hight stated that flying will be tied to Renown with your Covenant. We don’t know what or when that will be, but better to keep that up and be able to fly immediately when that becomes available. Or, be glad this catchup system exists, so flying will be easily achievable.

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