WOW Patch 6.1 The heirloom tab and how it works
As we’ve mentioned previously, the heirloom collection UI (or “heirloom tab”) is now live on the PTR. The UI resembles the Toy Box and functions in much the same way: if you have an heirloom item on your account, it will be automatically added to your collection. Unlike toys, mounts, and pets, when you acquire a new heirloom, it will be added directly into your collection with no need to “learn” the item. When you want to equip one of your heirlooms, you click on the item in your collection and the game creates a duplicate of that item in your bags. If you want to get rid of it, you simply throw that item away like a piece of old paper. If you wanted to, you could fill your entire inventory with Bloodied Arcanite Reapers. I don’t know why you’d want to do that, but with the new heirloom system, you could.
The system for upgrading those heirlooms doesn’t seem to be fully implemented in the current PTR build. While we know heirlooms will be able to be upgraded all the way to level 100, the items for doing so are not currently available on the heirloom vendors. The vendors, Krom Stoutarm for the Alliance and Estelle Gendry for the Horde, sell a variety of heirlooms and the level 90 upgrade items: Ancient Heirloom Armor Casing and Ancient Heirloom Scabbard. The Scabbards don’t seem to work at all right now and the Armor Casings don’t bring an heirloom up to level 90 as described — it brings them up to level 85.
I’m curious if level 85 is the intended level rather than the described level 90. Generally speaking, the heirloom items we’ve seen throughout World of Warcraft have extended either to level 60, level 85, or or level 100. It would make sense if the upgrade system reflected those break points. The Stained Shadowcraft Cap, a level 85 heirloom I carried over from my live account, remained level 85 and its tooltip is denoted with Heirloom Upgrade Level: 1/2. It might be safe to assume the level 90 tooltip on the Ancient Heirloom upgrade items is inaccurate and 85 is the real number.
To simplify that, the upgrade process appears as if it will work like this:
Upgrade 0/2 Level 60
Upgrade 1/2 Level 85
Upgrade 2/2 Level 100
If you have an heirloom that is already level 85, it will be added to your collection at the appropriate upgrade tier rather than reduced to level 60.
It’s a slick system, and when all of the PTR weirdness is worked out, will be easy enough for anyone to understand. I discovered heirlooms on my copied character that I forgot I even had since the system pulled that item directly into my collection. I suspect putting this collection in place will also give Blizzard the freedom to hand out heirlooms as rewards more often: they’ll be added to your collection and wait there until you want to use them rather than consume your precious bag space