Switching covenants has been a topic of concern throughout Shadowlands due to the long grind associated with renown levels and lack of catchup. Fortunately, in Chains of Domination, quicker renown catchup mechanics were introduced to help speed up the process. With these in place, you can quickly catch up to 40 in a matter of days and the new levels come through the 9.1 campaign.
Luckily, most content in Shadowlands has the chance to grant renown so players can pick and choose freely. The first 40 levels are accelerated and will slow down as you near the end, narrowing options a bit. The following activities all have a chance to grant renown levels upon completion:
Furthermore, not all of these activities are guaranteed to give renown. Among those that do are the weekly sanctum quests, world bosses, and the campaign storyline quests. All the other aforementioned activities only have a chance to grant a renown level. Additionally, this chance lowers the closer you get to the current cap. At the present time, the current renown cap is level 60.
Renown Catchup has been in place since the launch of Shadowlands for any player that falls behind for any reason. This can happen if you missed a couple weeks of playing or if you’ve recently swapped to a new covenant. In patch 9.1, the renown granted was accelerated to help those players catchup faster. As mentioned above, the renown granted will slow down when you get close to the end however, it goes quite quickly regardless.
Prior to reaching renown level 40, multiple activities will drop more than one renown at a time. World bosses will each drop 2 renown when defeated. With the introduction of the new Korthia and Maw zones, an extra world boss spawns each week. Additionally, we still have the old world bosses that spawn in one of the four main Shadowlands zones. This means that you can get up to 4 renown for free each week by killing them both.
Although I mentioned the weekly souls quest as a way to get renown, it is important to note that it will stop at 40. Because of this, you do not have to complete this quest if you are at or above 40 renown. If you are a new player or just swapped covenants, this is an easy 5 minute activity that grants one renown per week.
Additionally, all of the earlier covenant campaign quests (the ones from 9.0) now grant 2 renown each thanks to the catchup. This fortunately expedites the grind quite heavily.
Because all of the random drop activities have a lower chance to grant renown the closer you get to cap, these should be prioritized. This means that you should ignore your campaign quests until you stop getting renown levels from activities like dungeons and raids. The campaign quests are guaranteed renown and you should save them until around renown 25. Doing so will make the renown catchup go much much faster.
After you have reached renown 40, renown catchup slows down significantly. The only guaranteed sources of renown are the following:
However, if you are behind on the current levels (41-80) raid bosses, dungeons, callings, and pvp will once again have a chance to award one renown.
Furthermore, you will stop receiving catchup renown if any of the guaranteed weekly activities are still incomplete. This means if you are 4 renown behind cap and have yet to complete your weekly anima quest or korthia quest, you will only be able to earn 2 from other sources. The other 2 renown must come from the current weekly activities.
If you’re unsure if you are eligible for renown drops, check your quest log to see if you have incomplete weekly story quests.
Blizzard has heard the cries of the community with the release of the newest raid tier. Many players noticed a significant performance increase with a covenant swap. Because of this, you are able to return to a previously allied covenant one time without grinding their favor. It is likely we will see one of these pardons each patch moving forward. Upon returning to an old covenant, all of your renown remains as it was when you left it. These catchup mechanics for renown will help those who returned become relevant more quickly.
However, anyone joining a new covenant will be starting their renown from level 1. You will have to then unlock all soulbinds and traits through the renown grind.
Fortunately, with all these catchup mechanics in play, it doesn’t take long to reach max renown. Levels 1-40 is achievable in just a few days if you grind dungeons. The story quests range in length but are usually completed within 10-20 minutes, thanks to flying if you have it.