Shipyard – am I doing it right?

One of the features to come out of the 6.2 patch has been the addition of a shipyard to our garrisons. And I just don’t think I’m doing it right.

I have to preface this by saying that I actually love having a shipyard as part of my garrison. It makes sense to have it. I like to walk around the docks and kick the lazy peons having a snooze – I can almost smell the sea air! The missions side of it though, I just don’t think was thought out well enough. But I have some thoughts!

Building ships

When we first build our shipyard, we build a ship, send it out on a mission or two, and it gets destroyed. We’re then instructed to just build another one and try again. Now that’s all well and good until you start thinking about what we just did – we just sent an entire crew out to see on a suicide mission. They died to prove the point that when you send your ships out on missions, they may not come back. That poor crew! (I like to hope they were all wearing floaties and made it to shore safely). The only point that was made to me was that I should only send out missions that have 100% chance of succeeding. I don’t want to kill crews unnecessarily! And I certainly don’t want to have to keep building ships to replace them all the time – I have no garrison resources anymore!

Which brings me to…

The ongoing cost of switching out abilities

One of the cool features of the ship missions is that we have the ability to deck out our ships with whatever abilities we want them to have. For example if we have a mission that requires the “Evasive” ability, you can just go buy that ability from the goblin down by the docks and slap it on your ship. Mission gets to 100% chance of success and you’re on your way.

However, purchasing those abilities costs 500 garrison resources a pop. That adds up after awhile. I’m constantly buying these abilities because I don’t want to lose my ships. Which is apparently wrong. In one of the many recent Q&A interviews, the devs indicated that this approach to the shipyard missions was not what was intended. It was intended that we would send our ships out with the abilities they had, and suck up the loss of losing a ship if you failed. I’m not a fan of this. Mostly because it takes too darn long for me to level my ships. And there’s the whole killing off a crew.

Luck is also a skill

Then there’s the issue of RNG. RNG-sus is not kind to me (Blizzard hates shamans, don’t you know!). This map here is the BEST I’ve ever had it in terms of having treasure missions available to me. Previously, it was 1 treasure mission, with the only other one being for a HFC raid cache that I couldn’t get close to completing because it required me to have a level 3 shipyard for the carrier ship to complete it.

Which is part of the problem. Not only is there RNG with the missions that are available to you, there’s RNG with what ships are required to complete a mission at all. And I’ve been most unlucky. In the end I sent my ships off on the HFR raid cache mission at a 77% success rate. It failed and I lost TWO epic ships in the process. I was not happy. But I rebuilt. The only positive to have come out of the experience was that the HRF mission has a second chance, and this time I was able to use ships I actually had to complete it. (Though even using ships I had AND having the region buff (as indicated by the circle in the top right of the map) the highest I could get it to was 95% success rate. Thankfully it succeeded.)

Am I doing it right?

According to Blizzard’s intent, no, I’m not doing my shipyards correctly. I’m spending too many garrison resources to get my ships the appropriate abilities needed to complete missions, and I’m only sending them out when they’re at 100% success rate. (The only exception to this rule is the Legendary ship missions. I’m getting them as close as possible and then sending them off, as getting 100% on some of those is not possible).

Am I going to change how I’m doing the shipyards? No. Because the idea of losing ships all the time is not fun for me. And to be quite honest, I’m surprised Blizzard didn’t think this is what would happen. I’m not the only person playing the shipyard this way.

How can the shipyard missions work better?

My boyfriend and I were discussing this last night and we think we came up with a good way for the shipyard missions to work.

Our biggest gripe is losing ships on failed missions. It doesn’t make sense. If I have an epic (purple) ships, it’s fully kitted out – it’s not a shoddy little life raft! It’s a full on fighting machine! To have it completely destroyed in a battle is not realistic. Also, it makes you feel crap. It makes you feel like you’ve really failed, because not only did you fail the mission, but you killed your crew and destroyed your ship. And that’s a bit rubbish.

So how about instead of completely losing a ship from a failed mission, we lost a level of the ship instead. For example, if I sent an epic purple ship in to battle and it failed, the ship would take some damage and would be reduced to a blue level ship instead. If you fail with a blue ship, it turns to green. Only if you fail a mission with a green ship would it be potentially destroyed.

This way you have the ability to “fix your ship up” by levelling it back up to what it was before you sent it out and you don’t feel like such a failure.

What do you think? Would losing a level on a failed mission help you feel better about the missions? How are you going with the Shipyard?

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