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It’s one thing to wield a cool weapon in World of Warcraft, but it’s even cooler to wield an ENCHANTED weapon. Massive colorful auras of flames, skulls, lightning, and blood - all of these make a great looking weapon even better with the help of weapon enchantments and illusions. This guide seeks to outline what weapon enchantments and illusions are, some of the ones we consider to be the best, and how to get them.
Weapon enchantments in WoW are a changing commodity. In the earliest days of the game, weapon enchants were key component of the character optimization formula. If you wanted your character to have the best stats (Strength, Agility, Intellect, etc) then you needed to have your weapons enchanted correctly. These enchants were not easily accessible either. First, you had to defeat a monster or boss who “dropped” the recipe for the enchantment. Once you completed that task you then had to locate the reagents to make the recipe and craft the enchantment. It was a long process, but it was necessary if you wanted your character to be as strong as possible.
In addition to bonus stats, the enchantments also added a unique visual effect to your weapon. Back in the early Vanilla days, you didn’t have much of a choice in which visual effect your weapons got. In Shadowlands, enchants with a stat bonus still exist. These are 5 different Shadowlands enchantments that you can use on your weapons in the current expansion that provide various stat buffs to your character - Celestial Guidance, Ascended Vigor, Eternal Grace, Lightless Fortress, and Sinful Revelation. A character must be progressed in the Shadowlands enchanting profession in order to craft the enchants, but they can also be purchased on the Auction House if you do not have the profession.
Outdated weapon enchantments serve a totally different purpose. Old enchants still exist and you can still use them to add stats, or optimize a low-level character, but enchants are primarily cosmetic in the current state of WoW. Nowadays, old enchantments are also referred to as “illusions” and are part of the account-wide transmog wardrobe in the game. The glow effects of the old enchants still exist as illusions, and many new variations have been introduced as well. You can unlock weapon illusions through raid and dungeon boss drops, PvP rating, questing, and more. The transmog feature allows you to freely pick and swap your favorite illusions and apply them to your currently equipped weapon(s). Cosmetic autonomy has been a growing priority for many WoW players, so the addition of weapon illusions was a major quality of life change that many players were happy about. Long gone are the days of being forced to wield a specific enchantment because of the stat buff!
It is not up for debate which weapon illusions are the best. Hands down, the most popular weapon illusions in the game are the rated PvP illusions. Below, we will briefly describe what the enchantments do and how to unlock them.
Glorious Tyranny adds an intense dark red “bloody” glow effect to your weapon. Glorious Tyranny was introduced in Mists of Pandaria under a different name, Bloody Dancing Steel. Originally, the enchant had stats, and unlocking it required a rated battleground rating of 2200 or an arena rating of 2200. The enchantment itself was consumed on use and could not be used again, so at the time it was only possible to apply it to a single weapon. When the Wardrobe feature was added to the game in the Legion expansion, the Bloody Dancing Steel enchantment was removed and replaced by the Glorious Tyranny illusion. Players who earned a rated PvP rank of Duelist or higher in Mists of Pandaria Seasons 14 & 15 were now able to buy the Glorious Tyranny illusion from the Elite PvP vendors for each faction in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms. Purchasing and using the illusion now binds it to your account, and enables it to be applied to any weapon on any character. If you earned the correct PvP rating in MoP, you can still unlock Glorious Tyranny in Shadowlands.
Primal Victory adds a vibrant dark blue aura with darker blue / black floating particles to your weapon. Primal Victory was introduced in Warlords of Draenor and was unlocked in the same way as Glorious Tyranny through rated PvP. You needed a rating of 2200 in 3v3, 5v5, or rated battlegrounds to buy the illusion for 2500 Conquest points. You were able to apply the illusion to Heirloom weapons and transfer them to your alt characters for use during leveling. As with Glorious Tyranny, in Legion it became possible to purchase Primal Victory from the elite PvP vendors for both factions in Ashran in order to add the illusion to your account’s transmog wardrobe. You needed to have earned a rated PvP ranking of Duelist or greater in PvP seasons 1, 2, or 3 of WoD to purchase it. If you earned the correct PvP rating in WoD, you can still unlock Glorious Tyranny in Shadowlands.
Demonic Tyranny adds a large and intense green flame effect to your weapon. Demonic Tyranny was unlocked through rated arena and battlegrounds and required a rating of 2400. Conquest Points were removed in Legion and replaced by a new currency called Marks of Honor. Purchasing Demonic Tyranny cost 15 Marks of Honor and once the item was consumed, it was made account-wide within your transmog wardrobe. This meant that you did not need to continuously achieve a 2400 rating each season to unlock the illusion for use on a specific character. Consequently, because Demonic Tyranny was attainable during the advent of the release of the account-wide Wardrobe feature in Legion, once Legion concluded and Battle for Azeroth was released, the illusion was removed from the game entirely. Currently, it is not possible to obtain or purchase Demonic Tyranny from any vendor, unlike its predecessors Glorious Tyranny and Primal Victory. Demonic Tyranny remains the rarest, and arguably the most sought after, PvP illusion to date because of this limitation. It is not possible to unlock Demonic tyranny in Shadowlands.
Dreadflame adds a fiery purple effect to your weapon. Dreadflame was the rated PvP illusion for the Battle for Azeroth expansion and required a PvP rating of 2100 in seasons 1, 2, 3, or 4 to be unlocked. Once unlocked, unlike previous PvP illusions, Dreadflame was automatically added to your account-wide transmog wardrobe. There was never an item or consume to unlock the enchant. Although much less popular than its predecessors, Dreadflame remains sought after simply because it is totally unobtainable.
Shadowlands is the first WoW expansion that has introduced more than one PvP illusion. The first, Sinful Flame, turns your weapon a translucent gray with subtle smoky particle effects surrounding it. It was unlocked in Shadowlands PvP Season 1 with a rated PvP ranking of 2100. Unchained Fury adds a unique black “tendril” effect that wraps around the countour of your weapon and moves toward the top. It is currently still available at the time of this article, and is obtainable during Shadowlands PvP Season 2 by reaching a PvP rating of 2100 in arenas or rated battlegrounds. Both illusions are not very popular among players as they are much weaker in appearance compared to the previous illusions. They are also the first illusions that primarily lay on top of the weapon skin itself rather than as a particle effect surrounding it. It is unknown at this time whether new illusions will be released for each PvP season of Shadowlands but based on the trend so far it is safe to assume that will be the case.
Below are a few honorable mentions for some of the best weapon illusions in World of Warcraft. There are many to choose from in the game, but we narrowed it down to some of our favorites.
Flames of Ragnaros engulfs your weapon in roaring orange flames. Flames of Ragnaros is arguably one of the best weapon illusions in the game. Originally, it was introduced as part of the WoW 10th Anniversary Molten Core event in Warlords of Draenor, where the 40-man Molten Core raid returned with new loot and rewards for a short period of time. Flames of Ragnaros dropped from (you guessed it) Ragnaros himself, but the drop rate was extremely low so very few players were able to acquire it during the anniversary event. The illusion was brought back to the game as a recurring Feast of Winter Veil exclusive item, and could be obtained, if you are lucky, from opening Stolen Presents during the event. The item itself is not consumed on use, but the relevance of this is minimal since the illusion is added to your account for all characters to use once the item is obtained and used. It is the most realistic and intense “flame” style illusion in World of Warcraft.
Winter's Grasp wraps your weapon in a swirling blue aura that resembles the stinging chill of winter. The illusion particles are very large, and the aura surrounding your weapon is massive. Depending on which weapon you’re using, the illusion can sometimes appear as large as your character itself. This illusion is a must-have if you are a Frost Mage and Frost Death Knight player. Winter’s Grasp is only available during the Feast of Winterveil seasonal event. You can get Winter’s Grasp by opening Stolen Presents, which are obtained by completing daily quests during the event. It is not a guaranteed drop, but it has a higher drop rate than Flames of Ragnaros, so you may get lucky and get it on your first try!
The Mongoose enchant was added to WoW in The Burning Crusade expansion. It adds an intense blue aura of cascading lightning bolts to your weapon. It remains one of the best looking enchantments in the game, and provides a necessary stat bonus for any low-level characters looking to optimize their damage. You can still get Mongoose in Shadowlands by defeating Moroes in Karazhan. Mongoose has a 10% drop rate, so it should not be difficult to obtain with a few attempts on max level alts. The Mongoose enchant remains an essential optimization component for Rogues in WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade. Back in the day, you knew a Rogue meant business when it pulled up dual wielding two Warglaives of Azzinoth enchanted with Mongoose.