Is it possible to hit the gold cap with garrisons? I’m going to say yes because for the first time ever the gold cap is in reach for me. I expect to hit it sometime within the next two weeks. I’m not saying that to brag or anything, but to let you know that it is not too late to get in on the garrison bounty. The time to start is now before all the gold missions go away with Legion.
I play my garrisons pretty casually. I have been playing them for over a year but I’ve also spent a lot of gold several times on WoW tokens. Those tokens have paid for my subscription this past year and will keep doing so going forward.
I am one of those people who actually enjoy garrisons. Some days I do all the garrison things on every single character while watching youtube. This isn’t my usual method though. I generally quick cycle through missions and gather materials only once per week on each character. The exception to this are three characters who are the sole 100s on their realms. They gather a lot more because they have less gold backing them up and need the income.
It takes me about thirty minutes to quick cycle through all my garrisons – I have thirteen – and just send my followers out on missions. On days when I spend more time also picking up resources etc., it can be well over an hour. This time will be different depending on how many garrisons you have and whether you are also spending time at the auction house or doing other garrison chores.
Depending on the amount of time I spend on garrison missions, I usually make between 5000 and 15,000 gold a week. Sometimes it is a lot more on the realm with the most characters.
Occasionally I see comments either at Blizzardwatch or on twitter wondering how garrisons make any gold. I want to help people take advantage of the easy garrison gold before it goes away. Here is my casual way of doing it.
Unfortunately as of 7.0, none of the following guide I wrote here will earn you any gold. Blizzard took out every type of gold mission. You can probably still flip WoD mats using the storehouse and garrison resources. That might be worth it depending on your server.
If you just got an alt to 100 and are wondering if upgrading your garrison to level three is worth it…I’d say no. There isn’t really much benefit and it is dead content now. Enjoy it while leveling instead and then head on to the Broken Isles.
You will need:
Addon: Master Plan or something similar – Seriously don’t use the stock UI for missions. It is slow and Master Plan will speed things up dramatically by auto picking followers for missions. It also makes the shipyard much easier to deal with.
A level 3 Garrison – Mainly so you can upgrade buildings to level 3.
A level 3 Inn/Tavern – You want at least level 2 so you can start recruiting Treasure Hunter followers. Getting it to level 3 also opens up special treasure missions.
A level 3 Barracks – This allows you to have 25 followers and thus five more treasure hunters.
A Level 3 Salvage Yard – The large boxes are full of free loot. The questline for the plans starts in the Spires of Arak in your outpost. It doesn’t take very long and you get to help some goblins.
At least a Level 1 Trading Post – I generally upgrade this to level 2, because it yields more garrison resources. Level 3 adds even more and a reputation bonus if you care about that.
The Shipyard – I can hear the groans now. However, some ship missions are awesome when it comes to gold. Get it to level 3 and it’s table will be inside your garrison and much less obnoxious to deal with.
Helpful, but not absolutely needed:
A level 2 Dwarven Bunker/Warmill – This will grant you armor to gear up your followers in exchange for garrison resources. Your goal is to get them all up to 675. You can bust this up to level 3 for a daily quest that grants an extra armor piece and a weekly quest that will give you a bonus seal for Hellfire Citadel.
At least a Level 2 Herb Garden and Mine – Gathering isn’t fun, I know. But these are free resources and you will want them. Bumping it up to Level 3 will yield more resources. The most I ever gather is once a week and I don’t do it on the same day on every character because who has time for that? Instead I try to make sure some of them gather at least once a week. Of course if you want to, you can gather every day. I would encourage it if you have only one level 100. You can always sell the herbs and ore.
Level 3 Menagerie – This is for people who like to pet battle. If you don’t, ignore this step. You want it to be level 3 because then defeating the daily trainer can award you battle pets along with the charms. You can buy stuff with the charms like more pets or special stones etc. Some of the pets can sell for quite a bit on the auction house. They will probably sell even better in the next expansion.
Profession Buildings as wanted. This is up to you. Personally, I’m not willing to invest any more time and effort into WoD professions at this point so I generally ignore my buildings. If you can find a market for crafted gear, gems, enchants, etc. on your realm, it might be worth it to upgrade these and work on profession mats. If you like to fish, a Level 3 Fishing Hut will let you catch big fish in the comfort of your own garrison. The 125 stat food made from these fish usually sells pretty well on the auction house.
So you have your buildings, now what?
The first thing I would suggest is to start recruiting treasure hunter followers from your inn. If you have a stockpile of those follower retraining rewards from previous missions, you could also use them and hope for a treasure hunter re-roll on your current followers.
I do not have an entire stable of twenty-five treasure hunter followers. On most of my characters I have between seven and twelve. If you have the patience to re-roll or hire 25 treasure hunters, you will probably make more gold but it isn’t necessary.
Send your minions out on garrison missions every day. I would use something like Master Plan to help organize your missions according to content and mainly send them out after gold and oil. Do the shipyard missions at least once a day if you have enough oil.
If you can clear out the garrison missions twice a day, it will really help your income. I try to do it morning and night. This also goes for the shipyard if you have the oil for it. If not, save up your oil for treasure missions or missions that reward things you want like LFR gear or the left shark. Keep your extra sharks and sell them in Legion. This goes for any pets you get through missions or the menagerie.
The trading post is important because of the trader who visits daily. Sometimes they have things on sale for four garrison resources. When the sale items are either raw beast hide or enchanting dust, you will want to buy a stack of 200 – or several stacks if you have enough resources. Put these on the auction house in stacks of 50. Credit for this idea goes to Astaria. It works well and I use it on all the realms I play on.
Because you are spending resources on trader items, check and see what the trading post master wants in exchange for garrison resources. On days when they want herbs or ore you are all set to get garrison resources. That is why I suggested you clear out the mine and herb garden at least once a week.
If you are less lazy than me, you can also sell those herbs and ore on the auction house. The prices for them might make it worthwhile on your realm.
Lastly, I am going to talk about the salvage yard. If you are doing your garrison missions at least once a day it won’t take long for you to get a stack of large salvage boxes. You want a level three salvage yard so you will be able to get the large boxes.
I open the salvage boxes and bags about once a week. They yield follower armor, vendor trash, herbs, ore and other mats, and gear that ranges from greens to epic. I sell the prettier gear for transmog on the auction house (or keep it for myself). How well this will work will depend on your realm. If you don’t want to do this, you can still make gold by vendoring the gear you don’t want. Once your followers are all geared up their armor can be vendored too. It really is a win-win box of goodies.
The more level 100s you have, the better your gold yield will be through garrisons. I have eight max level kids on my main realm. I concentrate most of my efforts on this realm because it is where my army of alts live. This doesn’t mean you are screwed if you just enjoy playing one character though.
Remember Taby? She is my lone max level Hordie. Together with a level 92 DK, she has managed to make about 63k gold with only occasional play. Once you get to level 92 and can create a level 2 garrison in Draenor, the trading post is available. You can use your baby alts’ garrison resources to buy more dust and hide when it is on sale and slowly increase your profits. They will also get gold missions though not the awesome ones that come with a level 3 inn.
This is, Dravy, my monk. She is my first level 100 on my original realm. I have a level 98 shammy who will soon add to the level 100 garrison gold goodness. This realm has the lowest amount of gold at 35k gold. My transmog doesn’t sell well on this realm and I’m not willing to do a lot of research into what does sell because I’m lazy.
Anyway, I spent about 12k getting Dravy’s garrison up to level 3 everything. At the lowest point my poor bank alt only had about 5000 gold. As you can see, the recovery is kind of slow but it is there. I realize telling you to just get level 3 buildings all over the place is annoying if you don’t have much gold to start with, but it can be done if you’re patient.
My last realm with a level 100 is hosted by Ryannde, my only remaining frost DK. She has done really well especially since I have no other characters here even close to max level. The grand total for this realm is 124k and change. This is due in part to some lucky missions that yielded salable honor.
I’m not going to promise that this guide will get you to the gold cap before Legion kills the garrison gold machine. I do think it can help you increase what you have though. You might as well make the garrisons work for you while you still can.
If this does help anyone out, let me know. I’d like to hear about your results. Also I’m totally going throw myself a blog party when I do hit a million gold.