Tuesday, June 30, 2015

A Personal Guide to My Shipyard Plans

I am not really a fan of shipyards after the first week.  Losing an epic ship or two on missions of 88% and 92% chance of success can really put a kink in my enjoyment and I would not be surprised if others have felt the same.  A guild mate failed a 98% mission yesterday and lost two epic ships on the same mission while failing it.  To say he cursed a blue steak would be generous.

I have developed a tentative plan of attack on how I will manage my shipyard and perhaps some people might benefit from following the same pattern, or perhaps can offer some tips of their own.

Race Matters:

Race played such a minor part with garrison missions that most people ignored it.  The people that did recruit followers based on race were doing so more for their looks than their functionality even if with the right traits there was some functionality to it.  With ships it seems to be the exact opposite.  The race of your crew is insanely important.

Each faction basically has only one race that can counter something and one race that can help with mission success, all the others are useless in my opinion.

Alliance have a Draenic crew that can counter dense fog and the horde have an Orc crew that can counter Icy waters.  If you can snag a non faction related race you could also pick up a counter with the murloc crew countering land objective and the Arakkoa crew countering a battleship.

These are the big four crews, the ones I want most.  The other two crews I might consider keeping are the Human and Undead crews as they both increase mission success chance.

While the Draenic and Orc crew have direct counters they are specific and targeted, so useless if the counter is not being used whereas the Human and Undead give a bonus to all missions.  There is a plus and a minus to both but having a selection of the four might serve you well.

All other crews can go on dangerous missions.  Why not?  Risk them.  If they succeed, congratulations, if they don't and get destroyed, who cares, it will allow you to build a new ship that could have a better crew.

The Arakkoa crew comes on one ship and one ship only, The Awakener, which is a unique ship you can purchase from the Order of the Awakened at exalted.  The Murloc Crew is a rare proc, one of a submarine called the Brgrggrgl Mark II and one of a destroyer called the Mrgrggrgl Mark III.  Good luck getting them.

My plan of attack?

I want one Awakener (destroyer), one each of the Murloc crew (submarine and destroyer) and the rest an assortment of Draenei / Orc or Human / Undead, adding in some transports battleships and carriers of course.

I believe having these crews will greatly benefit me in the success of missions thanks to the extra counters they provide and I will keep building ships until I get the crews I want.

Sink Happens:

One of the first things I advise people of when they mention they want to try PvP is to stop thinking of death as a bad thing.  Once you learn to handle that everyone dies in PvP it becomes a lot easier of a pill to swallow.  I think the same advice should be given here and people need to understand that ships will sink, it is how this part of the game was designed.

Embrace to sink.  If you have a fresh green ship, risk it.  If you have one with an unfavorable crew, risk it.  Heck, even if it is an epic, if it does not have a favorable crew, risk it.

The worst that could ever happen is a ship sinks.  Oil is easy enough to come by, so that is not really a limiting factor on how many ships you can build and the garrison resource cost of building ships is low enough that is should not hurt anyone too badly.

Each time you build a ship you have a chance for it to come out as epic and / or for it to come out with a crew you like.  So maybe losing a ship with a Gnome crew could be a good thing when it ends up replaced with a Human one.

Learn not to take the loss of a ship to hard because sink happens.

My plan of attack?

I lost some epics and I have learned much like PvP loss happens.  I also think I will take a page from PvP and sometimes realize that loss is a good thing.  It could replenish your mana, move you across the map, or in the case of ships it can get you a better crew and maybe even a higher quality ship.

I am going to play it fast and loose with my ships, at least the ones that will not be part of my end core.  Being murloc ships are rare I will keep them safe and I will try to play it safe with the quality races that I mentioned but any other race, as long as the mission is over 50% they are going on it.  Who cares if I lose them.  You can't win if you do not try and in this case, even if you lose, it could end up being a win when you replace your useless Gnomish crew with an infinitely more useful Draenic crew.

Scavengers are the new Treasure Hunters:

Remember the days before treasure hunters when scavengers were the shit?  Everyone was trying to get them and when one of your followers rolled with this stat it felt like a huge win.  With treasures being nerfed some people are not as interested in treasure hunters as much any more (not sure why because they are still great).  The thing is if you want to succeed in shipyards you will need a lot of garrison resources.

Equipment costs resources, resources are limited and not unlimited like gold, so you can only get so many per day.  So to maximize the ability to get the equipment you need when you need it you will need to have a steady flow of garrison resources coming in.

So the day of the scavenger is back.  Nothing better than turning that 300 resource mission into 600, or 900 or 1200.  Even more so when replacing the equipment completely on one ship is going to run you 1000.  Trust me, you will need resources.  Anyone that has gone into this for a full week and replaced some equipment to get missions done can tell you that their previous stash of 10,000 is fast approaching 0.

You might even want to consider going back to a trading post or lumber mill if you ditched them.  Just think of it this way, it is entirely possible that if you want to get close to 100% on a three person mission you might need to replace all your equipment and that could run 3,000 garrison resources.  So if you plan on doing this right, you will need a good flow of resources. (yes I know that is unlikely but it is just and example)

My plan of attack?

All those deactivated scavengers are making their return to the active roster one at a time.  No, I am not benching my treasure hunters but I am no longer as concerned about having the perfect crew for gear missions as I no longer need any gear for them.  Garrison followers will be filled with resource collectors only, gold, garrison resources, oil, apexis, you name it.  But scavengers are at the top of my list.


Getting all of the available equipment is a top priority in my opinion.  Most of them you can get from killing rares in Tanann (also known as T2) and I would suggest it is even worth camping those rares or at the very least when doing additional bonus objectives, do the ones in the areas near were those rares spawn so even if you do not wish to camp them you can still kill them if they happen to pop up while doing your objective.

You will need a group to kill the savage whale shark that has one of them but I am sure you can find a group on group finder for that but the sooner the better.  This has been out a week already and the longer it is out the fewer groups you will see for killing massive creatures like this.  It is a get it done while it is easier to do so situations.  At least this is not a rare so it is basically up all the time somewhere, it is just an elite.

One comes from the second boss in hellfire citadel which if you are not a raider or do not have the item level to get into a pug you might need to wait until LFR comes out to get this one.  If you are a raider or even a part timer or past raider with the appropriate item level to pug go for it.  The first two bosses on normal are rather easy in the grand scheme of things and even a loosely assembled pug with somewhat competent people should be able to kill the first two bosses without incident and the second one is the one you need.  Everyone in the group get the pattern, so don't worry about having to win a roll for it.

Any other ones are really not worth getting.  The ones requiring reputation do not counter anything so they are not really anything to worry about unless you are have completion addiction like me.

I purchased the fishing net and used it for a while to get a feel for it and it really is not worth a lot.  The best I ever got was a total of 34 enormous fish but the worst I ever got was 14 regular fish. It is not worth losing a counter for such a tiny amount of fish, so do not even consider this one, ever.  Just don't.  In the vernacular of watcher, if you are using the fishing net you are doing it wrong.

The unsinkable equipment that you can get with our faction related reputation at revered might seem like an awesome thing being your ships can never be lost with it, does not counter anything.  Do you know what is better than having an item that makes it so your ship won't sink?  Getting 100% on the missions so there is no chance of sinking.  Use counters, not unsinkable. 

One thing of note with unsinkable is that you will also need to replace it after any missions that failed where your ship would have been destroyed.  What it does basically is destroys the equipment instead of the ship.  So if you do decide to use it make sure that if you fail you check to see if it is still there or was taken off.  Maybe after you are done with the legendary quest line and the mount and pet missions and just want to do it for fun, unsinkable will work so you never need to worry about losing a ship, but early on, just work on getting the missions done and having an actual counter is better for getting them done.

My plan of attack?

None really.  I have all the equipment already except unsinkable which I will be getting in a day or two most likely.

Switching Equipment:

Now for the end of this post.  You should have the right crews, understand the risks of losing a ship, have been stocking up on garrison resources, and have a full selection of all the possible counters through your equipment.

Don't be afraid to spend your garrison resources.  You are better off spending it and making sure you can complete those important missions than you would be by being stingy with your garrison resources.

I know many people, myself included, are hoarders and do not want to part with things, we would want to save them for later should we need them.  Well, right now is later enough in this case.  Spend those resources, do not hoard them.  Just spend them smart, think about which ships you are sending and which counters you need to add before just changing things all willy nilly and you will do just fine.  Just don't fall into the "I don't want to spend them, what if I need them later" mentality that so many of us have sometimes.

My plan of attack?

Once I have all my key ships to epic with two equipment slots each I am going to switch around their gear whenever I have to so I can make sure to maximize my chance of success at any given mission.  I will freely spend my garrison resources to change each and every counter as needed for each mission.  Perhaps in time even figure out a few ships that I can basically lock in as done and never change.

Once I have built it all up, having my ships with my crew and my equipment, I will finish all the best quests, knock out the achievements I might not have by the time that happens, and then never step foot into the shipyard again.  Except for perhaps a gear mission here and there whenever they pop up, meaning I will only need to check the shipyard every two weeks or so after I am done, and that is what I am looking forward to, being done with the shipyard because it is not fun, not at all.

Fair winds and a following sea.


  1. Basically, you have outlined my exact plan. I think I would like the process more if ships couldn't be lost. That triggers something inside me that removes fun. So, I'll do the ship missions until I get my mounts, pets, and achievements. I will go after gear for as long as it is relevant. And then I'll never go back. It is a min-max game until then.

    At least with one of the updates you can now log out at the shipyard without waiting out the 20 second countdown. That is a good quality of life change that should have been in from the start!

    Good guide as always.

    1. I think the idea that most people are saying what both your and I have said here, that as soon as we get what we want out of it we are never going back, shows that something went wrong with their design of shaipyards as a whole. People should not be wanting to stop playing something like this.

      I am glad if they are going to change it so I can log out at my shipyard table. It was annoying waiting the 20 seconds. Sure, I know it is only 20 seconds, but it is a useless 20 seconds.

    2. The reason that people won't go back to the shipyard after acquiring what they want is we have been conditioned by our garrison to anticipate success if we put our best team forward on a mission. Rarely do we see failure when an appropriate team is assembled – which can be done easily at this point. Secondly we receive a response (mission success) within 2-12 hours typically. However with the shipyard, we build anxiety when the mission is a day to several days in length. Anxiety is not conducive to enjoyment, especially if the mission ends in failure. This only breeds more anxiety and regret. Hence, the lack of enjoyment by many people playing the shipyard. Do you think that LFR would be the “success” that it is if groups did not eventually succeed at killing a boss? People want to enjoy the game they play and in many cases that requires success in all things they attempt – or they don’t attempt them.

      I believe Blizzard designed the shipyard to be a GR sink, similar to the Black Market AH use as a gold sink. They want us back out in the world getting GR from harvesting timber, collecting treasures across the entire map that contain GR and finally the chests in Tanaan that you can farm daily. As you mentioned many people hoard items in the game (why do you think they added a second vault for gear/transmog storage?), people don’t want to spend their hoard of GR – another reason why they don’t enjoy the shipyard – it will require work to maintain the shipyard through a need to replenish GR.

      If you wish to succeed at the toughest missions, you must have human/undead crews or panda crews. You cannot beat the “expert” captains (may use another term, but expert works) without a human/undead or panda crew. My strategy has been based on not going on any missions until I get rare ships with human and panda crews, primarily. Building ships is cheap. However you cannot replace crews like you can equipment, so might as well do it right the first time.

    3. @Anon

      Not that we are conditioned for success, we do not want to play a game where no matter how much effort we put into there is still a chance for loss. Shipyards feel like your effort is not worth it. No matter how much time you put into it, no matter what efforts your make to do your best, there will always be a chance at failure and the loss of something you worked for. The reward for taking that risk of loss is not worth the effort put into it. That is the problem.

      If there was a way to replace crew I think shipyards would go over so much better. The value of some races is just too high. Not even high, mandatory. So it is not like we have an option. You must have this race or you fail. Being race is linked to RNG that is why I believe shipyards suck. Nothing important should ever be linked to RNG without having a way to offset bad luck. Never. It is poor design.

    4. I've started to rethink just how seriously I'm going to be taking min-max'ing my ships. I completed the legendary quest line this past weekend with ease. I've gotten Left Shark. I am going on any mission with an 80% rate of success without changing any of my counters and I've only failed twice, losing one ship. For missions with lower rates, I do change the counters. I can't help myself. And as of yet, I don't have a single ship with a human crew.

      Really the only missions remaining about which I care are the two for the black market AH and the mount. Neither requires a counter to cursed crew. While I wouldn't object to getting the heirloom rings, they seem to be the missions that require a curse crew counter. Do I really want to kill myself in this process for rings I'll likely never use? I'm thinking not.

      I already have most of my specialist achievements, marching for expert. This all seems easier than I first thought. Am I missing something?

      And I have rethought my large building option. For now, I'm going to keep my mage tower. The mission completion orders are great for pumping out missions. Anything over 8 hours gets one and it has allowed me to do double or even triple the number of missions I otherwise could every day. Once I have everything naval done, I'll likely ditch the tower. For now though, I'm getting more out of it than I likely would anything else.

    5. I will probably min-max until I am done with all the legendary quest ones and achievements or pets or toys, have 3 left sharks now myself, but after that I will never touch the damn thing again.

      Just hate I have to do it on all my characters I want the ring on. Blizzard did a good job of making me not want to do the ring on any alts. Thanks blizzard.

      I am guessing the mage tower is how you finished it so fast. I am only one the second mission on my hunter and the third has yet to pop up on my druid, so you had to rush to finish them all I guess.

      No rush for me, as it seems it is going to take forever to get the tomes anyway. Sitting and 5 and 2.

  2. Thank you for that! I don't know if it would have ever dawned on me. I have been building ship after ship trying for an upgrade with no luck. I also have been unwilling to wait days for a less than 100% mission.

    Now I know what to do! Okay all you crappy greens, get out there and fight for your life.

    1. Hey, if they pass, you win, if they don't, you get rid of it anyway. Win / win.

  3. Thank you for the insight into the shipyard,enjoyable reading even though I can't muster any enthusiasm to carry on with mine.
    Regards Ulyesses

    1. I am right there with you. If it were not for the fact it is absolutely mandatory for a raider I would not have anything to do with it either. It does not interest me all that much either.

  4. I can't think of a better way to phrase this, so bear with me...

    When we participate in sub-standard "content" like this because we "have" to or because we really want that mount/pet/toy/etc...does Blizzard win?

    What I mean is that they are producing this disappointing "content" and we still engage with it and often for quite a while. Yes, we don't go back and re-do it, so it is a failure in that sense, but we still put quite a bit of time into something we don't really enjoy to get something out.

    So they aren't getting negative reinforcement that forces them to create better things. They are getting positive reinforcement that they can make middling to poor content but as long as the rewards are good enough, people will still do it.

    I've been thinking about this a lot with the flying thing. In principle I don't mind "earning" flying, (though I haven't had to before) but in practice the stuff I have to do on T2 is just not very enjoyable for me. The same with the legendary ring. I highly doubt I'll complete that on any character. I MIGHT try it on one or two but more than that is unlikely.

    I am trying to get flying done because it is account wide but...I just feel like I'm pushing myself through this and blizzard is seeing me as a happy customer because I'm doing it.

    1. Yes blizzard wins. They get away with sub par content because we make them believe we like it by doing it even if we don't.

      Then blizzard takes the fact that everyone is doing it as affirmation that the content is good content people wanted to do and they do not see it as it is, content people felt forced to do, and this makes them design more similar content.

      You got it right with saying "blizzard is seeing me as a happy customer" and that basically comes to the fact that they do not know how to analyze their data. Look at the number of people that had securing draenor before they announced it was needed for flying, it was on MMO-Cs main page that day, I think it was something like 2% of the player base (I was one of the weirdos).

      Now that they tied that to flying that number will be much higher, I would guess over 80% if not over 90%. They will read into that, people liked the securing draenor dailies when in fact only 2% actually did them and I am sure of that small 2% even less actually enjoyed doing them.

      That is what I mean about reading data wrong. We will end up with lots more content like that because 90% did it and not have it go away like it should because in reality only 2% did it.

  5. why do we want to do a shipyard again?

    I was unclear on the garrison for a long while until I started using the barn to get savage blood (nerfed), and the inn to get treasure hunters (nerfed).


    1. For the pet, the mount and the legendary quest. And for someone like myself that seeks out achievements I can do solo, there is that as well.

      If it was not part of the legendary quest line and did not have achievements I would not touch it with a 10 foot poll. I'd let someone else do it and buy the pet and mount off the auction house instead.

  6. I agree with most of the things you said, but I disagree about the race choice: Arakoa and Murloc seems pretty useless to me, since you are never going to be limited by ship type counters, only if you have enough equipment slots to counter all the threats/want to pay 500 GR to change it. Orc/Draenei crews are ok, but AFAIK there are no raid cache or legendary missions with threats they counter, so its debatable whether theyre useful. The only good crews are UD/HU, in fact you need a sub and 2 battleships with these crews to 100 % the penultimate legendary mission and improve your odds on the last.

    1. Yeah, after looking into it further it seems the human and undead blanket mission success bonus is better.

      I still believe having a balance works best. A little of each will allow you to do everything. I pure counter (like orc) will always be better than not having that counter at all and having undead for mission success. Maybe not for the "key' missions as you mentioned, but for some missions otherwise.

  7. Nice guide, and the last phrase is pure gold. There's the end of the shi[yard game?

    I moderately like the shipyard cause it's new, but hey, as I said before, the shipyard was better put off for the next xpac (which will be most likely sea-themed). Two Garrisons to manage for each toon is imo a bit much.

    1. An end? Depends on how you look at it. When I get the things I want from it than it is done, so yes, it has an end.

      I agree, they should have saved it for the next expansion if it is indeed sea based. More so because if they do this again there it is not going to see new but as rehashed content.

  8. Anon, Grumpy's former Guild Leader:

    Why would I even want to do the shipyard at all? I am not seeking the legendary ring as a legendary, merely doing part of the chain to get a better ring, so I have no interest in the final stage of the shipyard process. My main character in our guild this time is my paladin and he has a level 1 shipyard which gives me access to Tanaan via flight paths. Once flight kicks in, I hope to have the Pathfinder achievement and there after, I should never even have to build another shipyard for any alt.

    So for me, the shipyard is a waste of time and resources. For someone who is a raider, yea, it is a necessity to strive for the legendary ring (or at least so everyone seems to feel). That requires missions from the shipyard, so ya'll have fun with it. Thank god, I don't have to do that.

    As an aside, how is a ring that everyone who raids should wind up with, how is that legendary? I mean really. Blizzard does such a good good job of screwing the meaning of words, no wonder they have a public relations problem so often. To Blizzard, rare means common as dirt. Epic is a standard fare expectation. And now, for two expansions, legendary has come to mean everyone gets a (legendary) participation ribbon (item).

    Also a question about Pathfinder...does it count for only one account or does it cut across all accounts? In other words, will my paladin doing the Pathfinder achievement unlock flight for my characters on my other account or will my non-guild warrior at 100 on that account have to duplicate it for flight? It seems like it should be across all accounts under the same name, but I have not read that addressed specifically. So I was wondering if anyone could point me at some knowledge of this answer. Thanks in advance.

    1. As long as the accounts are on the same battle net account then yes, it should count for all of them. That is how I read it.

      If you are not interested in the legendary ring then no, there is absolutely no reason to do it unless you are looking for something to do. It is completely mandatory if you want the ring and completely optional if you do not.

      It is more legendary than any of the legendary items were before it. Sure more people have it but more work is put into it. it is not just a drop that you go lucky enough to win the roll for or be award and it not some collection quest one person was lucky enough to be given that lasts for only one raid.

      The ring and the cape before it, are more legendary that any legendary items that came before them. The quest line is long, takes a lot of kills, tells a story, has individual challenges, and requires a lot of time and dedication to get it, even if you do it completely in LFR. That is way more legendary than having the bow drop in sunwell. Absolutely.

      You can't judge a legendary on how many people have it, you judge it on how much effort was put into getting it and without a doubt these legendary items are indeed legendary.

    2. Oh, please, everybody and their mother had Shadowmourne at the time. If you did a bg you saw all str melee with it (and all hunters with the saurgfanf trinket).

    3. I did not have shadowmourne, it would not allow me to do the quest. I am not sure why either, it was a hunter weapon. ;)

      I loved deathbringers will. I had actually held on to it all those years. It now sits in my void storage. Might never use it again but the effects were cool.

  9. Nice summary, glad you did the work so I don't have to. Your comment about what "unsinkable" really means was enlightening.

    I will do the absolutel bare minimum amount of Galleonville I can get away with. So far I've done enough to get to T2 and I'm doing any 100% chance missions that come along. I only get 3-4 hours to play the game, 1 hour of which is wasted on Garrisonville for my 5 characters. The rest I want to spend on something remotely enjoyable, thank you very much.

    My two raiding characters will go to T2, and my human will do the rep grinding needed for the Pathfinder achievement.

    Like Archaeology the rest will be put on hold until flying comes back. I refuse to trudge around another dreary maze wasting my energy and getting frustrated with dead ends.

    1. I think I am putting off leveling and / or bringing more people to T2 outside of world boss kills until flying is added as well. I have not interest in doing a lot of that stuff without it.

      I do not even do my garrisons any longer, no time for me with the T2 dailies being my time is limited and in the grand scheme of things if I am going to pick and choose what I do with my time garrison chores are at the bottom of my list.

      As far as rep, it does not take too long. Already revered with 2 of the three and will be with the 3rd shortly I am sure. I am not a human and I did not use any of the rep tokens. It goes by really quick if you do all the dailies it seems. I did have a level 3 trading post however, and that does make a difference.

  10. FYI, Naval table coming to garrison:



    1. I saw that, but that really is only one part of the problem. There is the vendor I need to go to so I can upgrade my ships with the right gear, the drydocks I need to go to so I can create a new ships, so there are other reasons to still go to the ship yard.

      If anything they should have put the follower table down there, not the ship table up in the building. Once again blizzard fails at logic.

  11. Bah, you are absolutely correct. My hopes have been dashed!

  12. It would appear that pandaren crews now may have viability.

    "Pandaren Crew now increases success chance on naval missions that last more than 18 hours (was >1 day) and the degree of this success increase is now greater than a Human Crew or Undead Crew."


    The heirloom ring missions are all two days long. The other missions for the achievement are only one day, however.

    1. It would seem that makes the pandaren crews the best crew for the long missions now. Interesting change.

      I'd like to see there be a way to change the crew just like there is a way to change the equipment.

    2. Yep, even if they don't want to make that baseline they could add it after x-number of missions using all crews or something as a gate. I'm feeling the need to grind my shipyard more, so I'd support that.


    3. That would be a good idea. Something like complete 25 missions with all crews and unlock recruitment, where you can recruit the race you want for your ships. I would love that.


  13. do the missions drop raid gear?...more I should say...I had one drop of a 691 hunter helm(rancorbite hood--part of set)), which is really ugly. but gets jealous inspects!..blog on...:)

    1. Yes, there are raid gear missions based on your current raid progression. Not sure how many kills at a certain difficulty you need to get gear of that level, but you do get gear missions.

  14. Lovely quality-of-life changes coming to the shipyard. Blue from the forums:

    Shipyard Changes
    Please note, the following Shipyard changes are still in testing.

    Naval Missions
    Rare naval missions should now appear more frequently.
    Increasing the chance of success on a naval mission will now also decrease the chance a ship will be destroyed on failure. If the mission success chance is at or above 90%, no ships will be lost on the mission.
    Naval blockade missions now have a shorter duration of 30 minutes (down from 4 hours), reduced Oil cost to 50 (down from 100), and increased the amount of time before a naval blockade returns to 7 days (up from 5 days).

    Ships and Crews
    Increased success chance bonus on missions provided by a Human Crew by 50%.
    Increased success chance bonus on missions provided by a Pandaren Crew by 33% and the bonus will now apply to Missions that are 12 hours or longer (was 18 hours or longer).
    Significantly increased the effectiveness and bonuses provided by Naval Equipment items by 100%.

    1. I've only had 2 rare missions on my main and 1 rare mission on any other alts. So thank goodness for that one. I thought I would never get that achievement.

      The above 90% this is a suggestion I have put in multiple times and had everyone in my guild do the same. Glad to see we, and many others I am sure, got to them.

      All in all nice, and over due, changes.