What is Garrison in Warlords of Draenor

Garrisons play a major role in Warlords of Draenor. They are not optional, meaning that you must build one to progress through the introductory quest line of your faction in Draenor and unlock the rest of the continent. Your Garrison is designed as a central hub for everything the expansion brings. 

1. Unlocking Your Garrison

Your Garrison is unlocked almost immediately after starting in Draenor, in Shadowmoon Valley for Alliance players or Frostfire Ridge for Horde players. You need to follow the main questline and, after a few quests, you will end up with a Garrison Level 1 in which Barracks Level 1 are built.

2. Garrison Resources

Garrison Resources are used to:

build or upgrade Garrison buildings;

send followers on missions (some missions do earn you Garrison Resources instead, but they are rare, so do not expect to make a profit);

buy crafting reagents at the Trading Post;

place Work Orders at the Dwarven Bunker / War Mill. 

Garrison Resources are earned from:

the Garrison Cache, which is an object located next to your Town Hall that you unlock during the introductory questline in your starting zone and that generates 1xGarrison Resource every 10 minutes (up to a maximum of 500);

the Lumber Mill, where Work Orders can generate up to 120xGarrison Resources per day;

the Trading Post, where Work Orderscan generate up to 120xGarrison Resources per day;

completing quests in your Garrison (but they are not usually repeatable);

killing named mobs in Draenor.

If you only rely on your Garrison Cache for Garrison Resources generation, then you are looking at 144 Garrison Resources per day. If you add Work Orders in either the Lumber Mill or the Trading Post, then this number becomes 264, and if you add Work Orders in both buildings, it becomes 384. Upgrading all your Garrison building to Level 3 (the maximum) costs a bit more than 12,000 Garrison Resources, so it will take at least a month to get a fully upgraded Garrison.

2.1. Garrison Hearthstone

An important item in your Garrison is your Garrison Hearthstone, which allows you to teleport back to your Garrison. This item is on a different cooldown than your regular Hearthstone, which is important, because it means that you can set your Hearthstone in the town around which you are questing and easily teleport back and forth between that town and your Garrison.

If you lose your Garrison Hearthstone, speak with the Innkeeper in your Town Hall to get a new one.

3. Buildings

There are 20 buildings that you can build:10 Small buildings, 5 Medium buildings, and 5 Large buildings. The size of a building is not an indication of how powerful or useful it is. Your Garrison has building plots of different sizes and a Small building can only be placed in a Small building plot, a Medium building can only be placed in a Medium building plot, and a Large building can only be placed in a Large building plot. This is probably meant to add some constraints and force players to build different types of buildings (and not just Large buildings or just Small buildings). You can manage your buildings by using the Architect Table that you will find in your Town Hall. Each building you build is initially at Level 1 and you can upgrade it to Level 2, and then to Level 3, each time unlocking new perks.

You cannot destroy a building, but you can replace a building with another one. In the Architect Table, drag the desired building and drop it onto the building you wish to replace.

After unlocking your Garrison, its Town Hall is Level 1 and you have building plots for a Large building (which is taken by the Barracks) and for a Small building. As you upgrade your Town Hall, you get more and more plots, as follows:

Town Hall Level 1: has 1 Small building plot and 1 Large building plot;

Town Hall Level 2: has 2 Small building plots, 1 Medium building plot, and 1 Large building plot;

Town Hall Level 3: has 3 Small building plots, 2 Medium building plots, and 2 Large building plots.

Upgrading your Town Hall from Level 1 to 2 costs 200xGarrison Resources, teaches you how to build all Level 1 buildings (except for the Salvage Yard), and is done during Bigger is Better (Alliance) or Bigger is Better (Horde). Both these quests require you to finish a good portion of the quest lines in the starting zone of your faction. Alliance players need to finish the quest line in the Twilight Glade, up to Chasing Shadows. Upgrading the Town Hall to Level 2 has no Level requirement and can be done as soon as you get the quest.

Upgrading your Town Hall from Level 2 to 3 costs 2,000xGarrison Resources and is done during My Very Own Castle  (Alliance) or My Very Own Fortress (Horde). Both these quests are given to you when you first visit your Garrison after reaching Level 100.

4. Follower and Missions

Thanks to your Garrison, you can recruit followers and send them on missions, from which they come back after a few hours with either gear, Gold, and other cool items.

You can have up to 20 active followers (25with Barracks Level 3). If you have more than 20 active followers, then you need to deactivate some, until you are left with only 20 active followers. If you have more than 20 active followers, you can not start follower missions. Deactivated followers can be reactivate for a fee of 250 gold. It then takes them 1 day to properly reactivate.

Followers can be recruited in Draenor. Some require you to complete a quest and others can be recruited when you obtain their contract (through quests, vendors, or follower missions). All of the followers that you can directly recruit in Draenor are shown in your follower window (either at the follower tab of the Mission Table or when clicking the Garrison icon next to your minimap). There, you can find information about them: what abilities/traits they have and where you can recruit them. You can also recruit followers from your Inn / Tavern, in which case, you can specify the abilities or traits you are most interested in. The Inn / Tavern is very useful for recruiting followers that you can not otherwise obtain.

5. Rewards

The Garrison also gives you access to many rewards, like pets, mounts, toys, vanity items and transmogrification gear. 

6. Primal Trader

Primal Spirits are sometimes looted from mobs in Draenor. You can exchange these items for crafting reagents at your garrison. Ashley Zerep is the Alliance Primal Trader and is located on the left of the Town Hall entrance. Appraiser Sazsel Stickyfingers is the Horde Primal Trader and is located next to the War Tower, just outside the Garrison.