What is Item Level?
Item Level is the in-game mechanic / system the game uses to calculate or measure a character’s strength. While the system itself is flawed, and often not entirely accurate – Item Level is required at certain numbers to access content such as Dungeons, Skirmishes and Trials. Therefore, it is important to get a good boost on your Item Level as early as possible, so you can unlock and explore the content available.
How do you increase it?
A common question in Neverwinter by new players is “How do I gain more Item Level so I can run more content?”. This is actually a great question to ask because most content does require a certain degree of Item Level, particularly Epic Dungeons. There’s actually a very easy, quick way to build up your Item Level. Generally, 9k+ is a great place to start. So let’s get to it!
Insignias are basically like Enchantments, only they fit into your Mount, which can be managed from your Stables. (Character Sheet (C) > Mounts > Stable)
- Common Insignias grant 40 Item Level
- Rare Insignias grant 50 Item Level
- Epic Insignias grant 60 Item Level
- You only need Common Insignias to begin with, as they are the cheapest and most readily available.
- You must fill all 5 Stable Slots if you want to take full advantage of this.
- This grants at the bare minimum a bonus 400 – 750 Item Level.
Equip Powers (Mounts)
Having an Equip Power (Earned via Epic & Legendary Mounts) grants an addition 250 Item Level for Epics, and 500 Item Level for Legendary Bonuses. It’s generally ideal to aim for an Equip Power that grants stats that are considered vital to your class.
To access your Equip Power – Character Sheet (C) > Mounts > Current.
Companions are an extremely easy, and affordable way to build Item Level. Generally, just buying them at Rare is enough to give a good kickstart to your Item Level. If you can afford Epic though, all the better. The important part is being able to Gear them with Equips & Enchantments.
Finding Affordable Companions:
I usually recommend players to start off with x4 Rare Quality Companions, as each Active Rare Companion will grant 50 Item Level Each; totalling to 200 Item Level. I also recommend players to purchase x1 Epic Quality Companion to be their Summoned Companion until they work their way into Endgame.
To find and buy Companions:
- Open the Auction House
- Select the “Companions” Category
- Select the “Companions” Sub-Category
- Select Any > “Rare” or “Epic“
- Hit “Search”
- Select “Buyout” to view from Cheapest > Most Expensive or vice versa
Gearing Your Summoned Companion
Your “Summoned Companion” is the faithful companion that follows and accompanies you closely throughout combat – both in raids and solo content. Any Gear and Enchantments you place on it, grant you additional Item Level, thus making it important to add these things to your Companion.
- Runestones: Bonding Runestones (Rank 7+) or Eldritch Runestones (Rank 7 – 10)
- You will use Bonding Runestones at Endgame, so the earlier you invest in them, the better.
- Eldritch Runestones are used with Augment-type Companions, but lose their true potency beyond Rank 10 in comparison to the Bonding Runestone.
- Gear: Any gear works with any companion in the beginning, just ensure you place an Enchantment on the item, and that it is the right type of equipment (i.e. Neck Equip for Neck Slot)
- You cannot use any Artifact Gear on Companions.
- Cheapest Option is Rare Quality Gear from the Auction House
Gear & Equipment
Luckily, this part of it all is very simple and straight forward. With a single quest, you can obtain an entire set of gear with an Item Level of 460 – which is honestly about as good as it gets. You also receive Rank 8 Enchantments for the first completion account-wide.
You’ll probably want to replace the Vistani Neck, Belt, and x3 Artifacts you receive from this quest, as they’re good for Item Level and…. that’s it. Stat-wise and practicality-wise, they really suck.
- Artifacts & Artifact Neck/Belt Sets vary from class to class, and even from build to build. Check out MmoMinds for Class Guides to figure out what you should be using / working towards!
Final Item Level Calculations (General):
- Insignias: 400 – 750 Item Level
- Equip Power: 250 Item Level
- Companions: 200 Item Level (x4 Rare) + 100 Item Level (x1 Epic)
- Companion Gear: 1035 (Cheap) – 1260 (Mid-Game) Item Level
- Companion Runestones: 192 Item Level (Rank 7’s), 234 Item Level (Rank 8’s)
- Vistani Gear: 5310 Item Level (With Green Quality Artifact Gear)
- Artifacts: 328 Item Level (Vistani Artifacts + Green Quality Artifact)
- Rank 8 Enchantments: 546 Item Level
- 8361 Item Level (Lowest)
- 8978 Item Level (Highest)
- Does not include Campaign or Guild Boons