Similar to other buildings in your Garrison, the Shipyard can be turned into a nice and steady source of gold. This gold making method is pretty simple once your Shipyard is up and running, and your fleet is complete. But sadly, not many players bother with it, and they are at loss because of it.
As a general idea, there are Naval Missions which offer gold as reward. These are actually pretty frequent, and the amount of gold earned from a Naval Mission can be multiplied. To do that, here’s what you need to do.
1. Evidently, build your shipyard, and level up your fleet.
This will take a while, as in order to unlock the Shipyard and the biggest ships, you will need to complete a series of naval quests, earn some reputation with Hand of the Prophet (Alliance) and Vol’jin’s Headhunters (Horde), and also gather some resources and gold. To be more specific, the Ship Blueprint: Battleship requires reputation with the mentioned factions, and for the Ship Blueprint: Carrier, you will need to complete Naval Domination, which requires you to complete 25 Naval Treasure Missions, gather 2500 Garrison Resources and 2500 gold.
As you’re working on your Ship Blueprints, you should also get the Equipment Blueprints for your ships. Equipment Blueprint: Bilge Pump, Equipment Blueprint: Gyroscopic Internal Stabilizer, Equipment Blueprint: Trained Shark Tank, Equipment Blueprint: Ice Cutter, Equipment Blueprint: Fog Lights, Equipment Blueprint: Felmoke Launchers, all drop from rares in Tanaan Jungle for example.
There are others, but you’ll find out about them while working on your Shipyard. I’m not going to offer a full guide on acquiring them all, here. This guide focuses on the gold making part of the Shipyard.
Now, it can take a few weeks to finish all the required quests, in order to get all the ships. But it’s all worth it.
2. Get the right fleet setup.
Once you have unlocked all ships, one of the best fleet setups to go with, is 1 Submarine, 1 Transport, 3 Destroyers, 3 Battleships, 2 Carriers. Or, have 2 Destroyers and 2 Submarines, but make sure you keep 3 Battleships and only 1 Transport.
With a setup like this, you should be able to cover at least two missions at once.
3. Get the gold earning crews.
Now, the most important aspect for the gold making part, relies on the ships’ crews. You will need at least 2-3 ships with Goblin Crew (Horde), or Dwarven Crew (Alliance). A ship with this type of crew increases the amount of gold earned from a mission by 100%.
As you build your fleet, in case you get one ship with Goblin Crew, that’s a keeper! Do not decommission that ship. Once you have 10 ships, keep decommissioning the ones with Orc Crew, Draenic Crew, Worgen Crew, Tauren Crew and Pandaren Crew, until you get a Goblin/Dwarf Crew. Keep at least 2-3 with Undead Crew or Human Crew, as these increase the missions’ success chances, and at least 1 with Murloc Crew. A ship with Murloc Crew is important, as that ship will also work as a Transport ship. Gnomish Crew or Troll Crew are also OK, as they can save you some Garrison Resources by granting you Ship Equipment from successfully completed missions. But it’s up to you if you want to keep one.
To decommission a ship you need to be at your Naval table, open the ships tab, right click on the ship you want to decommission and select the command for it.
Getting the right crews can also take a while, as you can only decomission one ship at the time.
Once you have at least 2-3 ships with Goblin / Dwarven Crew (5 is ideal), all you need to do is complete missions every day, focusing on those with gold rewards. This way, you can get up to 5-6000g or even more per week, just from your Shipyard.
Evidently, if you have a Shipyard with all the ships on 2-3 characters, that weekly sum of gold will be multiplied. Of course, it can take one month, or even more to get a fully functional Shipyard on multiple characters. But it’s a solid investment of your time and in-game resources.
Your Shipyard will increase your consumption of Garrison Resources, as you will need to spend them on Ship Equipment, in order to increase the success chances of your missions. Therefore, a Lumber Mill and a Trading Post is an excellent building combo for more resources. But in case you can’t, or don’t want to change your building setup, you can complete a few Heroic Dungeons weekly, in order to gain some resources. Also, there are other ways to farm this currency.
Don’t send two ships with a Goblin/Dwarven Crew on mission with less than 75% success chance. These crews are kind of precious, so it’s for the best not to risk losing two ships with this type of crew. But over 80% chance, is quite OK. I have rarely lost ships on 80%+ chance missions.
Naval Missions also require Oil. In order to get Oil, you can focus onto completing Follower Missions with Oil as reward, complete Tanaan Jungle dailies, and defeat the 4 elite rares, that also drop Medallions of the Legion. These rares drop 100 Oil per day, per character.
In order to obtain your desired crews more quickly, you can purchase Rush Order: Shipyard from Kronk Rustspark (Horde) or Salty Jorren (Alliance), items which will allow to complete the construction of a ship instantly. A rush order costs 500 Garrison Resources, and if you have 3-4000 of this currency on the character you’re working on your shipyard, it’s not a bad idea to buy a few.