This is a guide on the publicly available ships in Tradelands. This guide will not cover ships which were available during special events or for a limited time only. Each ship receives a scorecard on its overall performance in three categories, taking into consideration things like level requirements and ship handling. Because we are a merchant focused fleet, we only rate ships that are able to be used as Merchant Ships.

NOTE: This is purely a statistical measurement. The best ship for you depends on your personal preferences. This is just a guide and not official in any way.

Here is a quick summary of the terms used in this guide:

  • Merchant Ship Rating: This measures how well the ship meets the requirements of a good merchant ship. This is mainly focused on how much money you can make. (See ship classification)
  • Privateer Ship Rating: This measures how well the ship meets the requirements of a good pirate ship. Interception and speed are the main focus of this category. (See ship classification)
  • Naval Ship Rating: This measures how well the ship meets the requirements of a good navy ship. Firepower and patrol capabilities are the main focus of this category. (See ship classification)
  • True Cost: This measures true cost to build the ship. It factors in the doubloon cost, as well as the cost in time to get materials (measured in doubloons) to fully purchase the ship.
  • Earnings per Minute: This is the amount of doubloons you earn per minute trading in this ship, assuming you are following the wind and using a profitable trade pattern.
  • Payback Time: This is the total amount of time you would need to be trading with this ship before it is profitable (you earn back more than you paid for it)

List of Ships By Level

You can view the critical stats of each ship by selecting the name of the ship from the list below. Each ship’s name is shown as it appears in the Shipwright.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

C-

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $8,250
Earnings/Min$108/m
Payback Time3.27 Hrs

Summary

This ship is useful as a personal transport but nothing else. It’s the earliest ship in the game that has good crosswind. However, the other two Level 1 ships have decent performance against the wind already, so the net value is non-existent and you will want to quickly upgrade past this ship anyway.

Final Verdict: This ship is not recommended for any type of profession.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

D

Privateer Ship

D

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $8,250
Earnings/Min$128/m
Payback Time1.07 Hrs*
* The free version of this ship has no payback time.

Summary

This ship is given to players for free, and as a result starts turning a profit as soon as you start using it. This is the ship you will want to use at level 1 and you shouldn’t have a need to upgrade it until Level 3.

Final Verdict: You get this ship for free. There is no reason to build another one unless you are trying to be cute by making one of different wood types.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C-

Privateer Ship

C-

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $8,250
Earnings/Min$192/m
Payback Time45 mins

Summary

This ship is a marginal upgrade for a pirate but isn’t worth the cost to upgrade if you are an aspiring merchant or navy man. The only reason it has use as a pirate ship is because of the slower leveling of that profession, so there is chance you will use it for longer voyages.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C-

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $23,250
Earnings/Min$192/m
Payback Time1.38 Hrs

Summary

The Heron is the first boat designed as a dedicated trade ship. It can effectively double your doubloons per minute, but costs 3x what a Level 1 ship costs, meaning you won’t actually make a profit in this ship. Also, it’s slow speed makes it an easy target for even the lowest level pirate.

Final Verdict: This ship is optional and recommend you skip it unless you are struggling to make money early on.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

B+

Privateer Ship

C

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $36,500
Earnings/Min$352/m
Payback Time1.72 Hrs

Summary

The Dart is the first true multi-purpose ship in the early game. It’s speed and trading capacity make it the best trade ship until Level 5. The jump in earnings per minute is significant, compared to its low payback time, means you will be leveling faster as soon as this is built. If you get bored, it can also double as an early game pirate ship as well.

Final Verdict: All players should build this ship. The Dart is the best early game trading ship. It’s speed allows it to be relevant for later game as well. It doubles your starting Trade Velocity and is the best upgrade available for a while.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

D-

Privateer Ship

C

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $34,250
Earnings/Min$180/m
Payback Time3.17 Hrs

Summary

This is the first true lateen rigged ship and would be a decent pirate ship if it wasn’t for better alternatives at this level. As a merchant ship, even when using the trade lanes for cross-wind ships, it still cannot outperform the Heron. It also takes too long to pay off this ship without enough upside.

Final Verdict: There are better options at this level and should be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C+

Privateer Ship

B

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $52,500
Earnings/Min$352/m
Payback Time2.48 Hrs

Summary

The Bullet is one of the best early game pirate ships. It is used even into end-game due to its versatility. However, it’s essentially just a Dart, but you pay $20k more to mount one extra cannon. This makes it a better pirate ship, but as a merchant ship you are better off building the Dart since it costs less for the same value.

Final Verdict: If you are looking at this ship strictly as a merchant, you should skip all level 4 ships and keep the Dart instead.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C-

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $40,750
Earnings/Min$320/m
Payback Time2.12 Hrs

Summary

The Pelican is an improved version of the Heron. Unfortunately, it is outclassed by nearly every ship at Level 3 and Level 4, making this a completely pointless ship to buy. It’s only use is in cargo trading which both the Dart and Bullet are able to do far better than this ship.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped. All it does is set you back $40k toward your next ship.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

D-

Naval Ship

D

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $72,000
Earnings/Min$240/m
Payback Time5 Hrs

Summary

The Kestrel is the first navy ship available to players. Oddly, it has some merchant trading capability but it doesn’t perform well at this role. It’s primarily role is in performing hit and run mortar strikes. This makes it a decent first strike vessel, but at this level you will probably not be high enough rank to actually bring this into a combat situation.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying for trading and can be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

B+

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $66,500
Earnings/Min$480/m
Payback Time2.30 Hrs

Summary

This is the first trading ship that performs like a mid-tier merchant ship, only smaller. It will immediately improve your earnings per minute by 100+ db’s per minute over any previous option you built. However, this is really just a money trap. If you are making good money with your current trade ship, you should skip this and wait until Level 6 where the true mid-tier merchant ships show up. Otherwise, build it and avoid the temptation to replace it until Level 8.

Final Verdict: The Pheasant is an upgrade to the Dart but it is generally better to save up for a Level 6 ship. If you end up building the Pheasant, you do not need to upgrade to a new merchant ship until Level 8.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

B

Naval Ship

D

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $409,500
Earnings/Min$80/m
Payback Time85.31 Hrs

Summary

The Dragon is the first steamship most players can access. Its low cargo capacity limits its use as a cargo raider, but it’s amazing cross and upwind speed make this one of the best interceptors in the game. It is one of the only pirate ships that can intercept a Demeter. A Dragon’s use as a navy ship requires some skill, which may not be something most players will have at Level 6 when this ship first becomes available.

Final Verdict: This ship is too expensive it build at Level 6. However, it is a very useful utility ship for those who can afford it, so build this ship only after you have reached end game.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

D-

Naval Ship

C-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $93,750
Earnings/Min$80/m
Payback Time19.53 Hrs

Summary

The Manta is the first navy ship that can carry a heavy mortar. This comes at a cost of $20k (plus mortar cost) more than the Kestrel. It’s decent armament means it is the first navy vessel you may be able to actually afford and use. Despite its limited cargo capacity, it is a poor trader and shouldn’t be used. It is also very difficult to use for interception.

Final Verdict: This is useless as a trading ship. It’s primary use is for mortar events, but there are better ships in higher tiers.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

A-

Privateer Ship

D-

Naval Ship

C-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $91,250
Earnings/Min$540/m
Payback Time2.81 Hrs

Summary

The Marlin is the best mid-tier trading ship in the game. No ship below Level 8 has a higher trade velocity. It is armed enough that it doesn’t require a low level escort. It is also the last trade ship with a Payback Time of under 3 hours. It also has enough armament to perform makeshift naval patrols, giving it some additional versatility that others ships don’t have.

Final Verdict: This is the best mid-tier trading ship in the game. The only reason you wouldn’t build this is if you purchased a Pheasant at Level 5. Once you have this ship, you will use it for the next few levels at least.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

D

Privateer Ship

D

Naval Ship

C-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $92,000
Earnings/Min$320/m
Payback Time4.79 Hrs

Summary

The Orca is branded as a privateer but it performs this task poorly. It is unable to intercept high tier ships, and struggles against lower tiered ones. The Bullet and the Dart both perform this function far better, but it has some decent skills as a navy escort. However, even in the naval category there are better ships at Level 6 which should be built before this is even a consideration.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

C+

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $94,500
Earnings/Min$80/m
Payback Time19.68 Hrs

Summary

This is the first purpose built navy ship that was meant for patrol duties. You need a crew of at least 3 (plus a helmsman) to operate properly. It works well with the rock paper scissors ships of Level 6, but beyond this it will not be good enough to stand up to advanced pirate ships of Level 7 and above. It’s a cheap deterrence vessel, but you need something better once you reach level 9.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped. It is an entry level navy ship which has better options coming in the next few levels. This one will most likely collect dust in your inventory.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

D

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

C-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $122,000
Earnings/Min$512/m
Payback Time3.97 Hrs

Summary

The Goose is a woefully under-powered ship. It is a legacy from a past era of Tradelands when cargo capacities were lower. The ship’s trade velocity is less than the Level 6 Marlin, and is nearly $30k more expensive. The only good thing about this ship is the higher gun deck and durability which allows for some unique uses in a navy, but there are much better ships to use if that is your goal.

Final Verdict: Do not build this ship. It’s one of the worst performing mid-tier trade ships in the game.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

D

Privateer Ship

A

Naval Ship

D

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $106,500
Earnings/Min$352/m
Payback Time5.04 Hrs

Summary

When you think Blackwind Pirates, this is the ship that comes to mind. It has all the right features for a pirate ship. It is an excellent interceptor, has a moderately-sized cargo hold, and has a low profile which allows for quick and easy boarding. The features make it capable as a trader and a navy ship, but this is not what it is designed to do, nor should it be used primarily in this capacity.

Final Verdict: This is a must have ship for any pirate. It is a decent cross-wind trader, although not recommended for this purpose.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

C

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $133,750
Earnings/Min$288/m
Payback Time7.75 Hrs

Summary

This ship is essentially the hulk of the sea. It is used to soak up damage from other ships but it is not useful for much else. It’s occasionally featured in naval battles, but it isn’t a staple ship by any stretch. The main issue with this ship is it can be used to protect the Goose, but is easily outrun by any other ship. Since there aren’t many Goose convoys, this ship finds itself relegated to auxillery duty only.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped. If you are looking for a navy ship, wait until the next level.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

A-

Privateer Ship

D

Naval Ship

C-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $145,500
Earnings/Min$648/m
Payback Time3.74 Hrs

Summary

The Beaver is second-best mid-tier trade ship after the Marlin. The Beaver is the best trade ship until Level 10 and is a significant upgrade in trade velocity. It doesn’t have enough firepower to be a front-line naval ship, and is not suited for piracy. If you are a dedicated trader, you should have this ship or the Marlin in your inventory no matter what.

Final Verdict: If you built the Pheasant at Level 5, the Beaver is a must have. If you built the Marlin, you can skip this ship and save yourself 3.75 hours of trading while you save up for a Tier 10 ship.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

B-

Privateer Ship

D+

Naval Ship

D

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $768,500
Earnings/Min$540/m
Payback Time23.72 Hrs

Summary

The Fox is a strange amalgamation of features that, on paper at least, are supposed to make it a multi-role ship. However, it essentially tries to be everything at once and is thus not good at any one role. It’s only real role is in trading, but the Beaver is a far better option for this level. It’s combat capabilities are outclassed as soon as you level up and you will likely not pay this ship off.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

B

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $149,000
Earnings/Min$180/m
Payback Time13.79 Hrs

Summary

The Otter is an upgraded combat version of the Fox. Ironically, this is one of the most cost effective mortar capable ships in the game. If you aren’t able to afford some of the more costly navy ships, this is a good option as it has a powerful broadside, mortars, chasers, protective barriers for gun crews, and decent patrol speed.

Final Verdict: This is a good poor-man’s navy ship and should be an entry level ship for anyone looking for combat ships.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C

Privateer Ship

D+

Naval Ship

D+

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $146,000
Earnings/Min$432/m
Payback Time5.63 Hrs

Summary

The Serpent is the first junk-rigged ship most players will have access to build. It’s a legacy ship built for a very specific (now obsolete) trade route. It isn’t a good trader anymore but opens access to some routes unavailable to other ships. It acts as a mother ship for pirate activities and has a powerful enough broadside to protect convoys. However, it sacrifices a lot of features for junk maneuverability and other ships at this level can outclass it.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped. If you want a junk-rigged ship, wait for higher levels where the quality improves, or purchase one that requires a voucher.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

D+

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $185,500
Earnings/Min$400/m
Payback Time7.72 Hrs

Summary

This ship was once the fastest trader on the seas. Since the Marauder is faster, this ship is unable to outrun any pirate at Level 7 or higher. The Cutlass’ inability to operate in cross-winds makes it a poor privateer. The one area where this ship still performs well is in a one or two man navy, where operating larger ships is actually a disadvantage because of unmanned cannons.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

D+

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $386,250
Earnings/Min$288/m
Payback Time22.35 Hrs

Summary

The Hook’s main feature is it carries 2 heavy cannons on three of its four sides, making it difficult to approach. Unfortunately, this make it defensible as a trader, but terrible as an attacker. It is described as a pirate ship in game but too slow to intercept experienced traders properly. It is also too expensive to work as a viable navy ship since its Cost vs. Firepower ratio makes it the most expensive of all Level 9 ships.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

C+

Naval Ship

A

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $907,500
Earnings/Min$180/m
Payback Time84.02 Hrs

Summary

In modern naval terms, the Phoenix would be classified as a Battle Cruiser. That is a ship that is powerful enough to destroy anything at or below its class, and fast enough to retreat from anything than can defeat it. It carries a diverse and powerful set of heavy firepower options and is uniquely suited for attacking in all directions. You will have to pay for it though, as it’s the first ship to reach nearly $1M in total cost. This ship is also one of the high tier ships.

Final Verdict: This is a must-have ship for any navy. It’s versatility can confront almost every ship that you will face during a combat patrol.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

D-

Naval Ship

C+

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $185,500
Earnings/Min$280/m
Payback Time11.01 Hrs

Summary

The Stiletto is the same as the Cutlass but with two medium chaser cannons instead of additional cargo space. Both ships are bad traders, so this is essentially an upgrade of the Stiletto at no additional cost. The chasers make it slightly better as a solo pirate and it acts as a skirmisher/corvette in navy battles with small crews. This is an optional purchase and better options are available if you can wait until Level 10 for the high-tier ships.

Final Verdict: Pick this up if you intend to do a lot of one or two-man escorts/combat missions. If you are able to acquire large crews, you can skip this ship altogether and get better ships at Level 10.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C+

Privateer Ship

B-

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $185,500
Earnings/Min$280/m
Payback Time11.01 Hrs

Summary

The Corsair is the second Junk-rigged ship available to players and arguably the best of the group. It has decent interception capability, firepower, and latching ability. It’s large cargo capacity allows it to operate as a pirate trader/mothership. However, while it can perform dual roles, it doesn’t excel in one role, meaning other ships can outclass it.

Final Verdict: This ship is a nice to have if you need versatility. However, building other ships at this level should be your first priority.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

A

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

D

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $301,000
Earnings/Min$792/m
Payback Time6.33 Hrs

Summary

This is the best trade ship in the game and has no equal. It is in the top three in trade velocity and pays itself off before you reach Level 11. Its trade velocity is an immediate $150/min upgrade from the Beaver and will be your best option for at least the next two levels. While some may look at it for its combat power, the large hull profile will make it difficult to be effective in this role.

Final Verdict: This is the best high tier trade ship. It should be built by all cargo traders regardless of typical crew sizes.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

B+

Privateer Ship

C-

Naval Ship

D

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $335,000
Earnings/Min$720/m
Payback Time7.75 Hrs

Summary

The Kirin is the second best Level 10 trader, sacrificing trade velocity to add Junk rigging. This allows the ship to access trade routes that are not available to other traders. While the ship performs well against Level 10 ships, it is outclassed by Level 12 ships and above. Also, the ship’s speed is a hindering factor as a pirate ship, other than as a mothership. It has too many blind spots to act as a good naval vessel.

Final Verdict: This ship should be built if you like trading on low demand servers and want to use less traveled trade routes to improve your rates. It should not be prioritized over the Grouse.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

B

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

F

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $286,000
Earnings/Min$704/m
Payback Time6.77 Hrs

Summary

At one point in time, the Mastiff was the best Level 10 merchant ship. The Grouse and the Kirin have both removed that honor. Unfortunately, the Mastiff was always underpowered in terms of trade performance and was never considered a good purchase. The ship should actually be a Level 9 ship where it could operate as a Marlin upgrade. As a level 10 merchant ship, it should be skipped by almost all players unless you are really strapped for cash and can’t make up the additional $15k it takes to get a Grouse instead.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

D+

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $1,655,000
Earnings/Min$320/m
Payback Time86.20 Hrs

Summary

The Prometheus is almost as expensive as an ironclad, but has weak broadside armament and a much bigger profile. The only real advantage it has is in the two forward and aft cannons which make approaching from any angle a dangerous idea. The steam engine is under powered, which means opponents should just go around it. To this end, it can operate as a convoy dreadnought but is otherwise difficult to use properly.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped. If you want a ship with similar characteristics, look into ironclads instead.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

F

Privateer Ship

B

Naval Ship

A

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $200,000
Earnings/Min$160/m
Payback Time20.83 Hrs

Summary

The Tyrant is a really good combat ship due to its really good cost to performance ratio. For its price, it has excellent performance characteristics, heavy armament, and overall speed. This means it can compete against most pirate ships and can go head to head against all but the most durable warships. Despite its ability to carry cargo, it shouldn’t be relegated to this duty unless it is a necessity.

Final Verdict: This is a must-have for any navy or combat oriented player. It’s low overall cost makes it a good utility choice, even if you are primarily a merchant.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C-

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

B-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $875,000
Earnings/Min$640/m
Payback Time22.79 Hrs

Summary

The Gargoyle is one of the newest additions to Tradelands and as such is still being tested. However, at this tier, most naval combat will take place with dedicated warships, including some with turrets. It’s firepower makes it a threat in patrols however, and can carry a large enough amount of cargo to make the mission profitable as well. It doesn’t function well as a dedicated trader, since it cannot outclass the Beaver.

Final Verdict: Building this ship is entirely optional as there are plenty of alternatives that can perform the same task.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C+

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

D-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $507,500
Earnings/Min$800/m
Payback Time10.57 Hrs

Summary

If you already purchased the Grouse at Level 10, then purchasing the Mule will not provide any additional value to your mercantile fleet. You would have to trade for 1,057 hours before you will see any true increase in the amount of doubloons you are making. The combat characteristics are not worth the cost, despite some anecdotal opinions from players that it handles well.

Final Verdict: This ship is not worth buying and should be skipped. It was a good purchase prior to the introduction of the Grouse, but is now completely redundant.

Performance Score

Merchant Ship

C-

Privateer Ship

F

Naval Ship

C-

Merchant Statistics

True Cost $1,000,000
Earnings/Min$832/m
Payback Time20.03 Hrs

Summary

The Camel has the highest Trade Velocity of any ship in the game, but you are paying up front to get it. It only affords a 5% boost in output compared to the Grouse, which means you have to trade for 140 days straight before you will get your money back. However, if you built the Kirin instead of the Grouse at Level 10, this ship is a significant improvement and should be considered. While this ship has decent combat performance, you should focus on building a dedicated warship at this level if that is your goal.

Final Verdict: If you have the Kirin instead of the Grouse, this ship is worth buying. Otherwise, this ship is optional, and provides value only if you enjoy grinding trade routes regularly.

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