The constant refrain in the recruitment channels (ie. Trade) now on WoW tells the story of the game's progression. If you are not in a raiding guild, you have to resort to PUGs (which are plentiful nowadays) but PUGs have become far more picky about their membership now that they are armed with the tools to measure prospective members. Achievements and Gear Score. Now, of course, I could simply lie about the Achievements and link other peoples, but that would be deceitful and it doesn't feel right for me. So what to do? You could run dozens and dozens of heroics to get Emblems, but I have done that before and they are all pretty much dull now for me. Mindless and unchallenging.
Well, one question would be why do anything? Without access to raid content, you are gearing up a character to do what exactly? Stand around Orgrimmar and whistle? That has happened before when my lack of time commitment has jarred against raid requirements and it is essentially frustrating.
The answer to these questions came from the most unlikely of sources - the random battleground feature. This is a new PvP feature for the game which does for battlegrounds what the Find Group function did for instances. And its brilliant! The queues are lightning fast - under 5 mins max - and the rewards are plentiful. The bonus honour combined with the recent reworking of the PvP equipment system means that with a little application you can rack up some decent equipment pretty damned quick! In three days I have snaffled three i232 and i245 items (shoulders, bracers and legs) which are the equivalent to the stuff I could get through emblems but so much faster.
The battlegrounds are also quite fun. The asshole contingent are diluted now and I'm seen all of the new battlegrounds that I had missed before. Isle of Conquest is pretty dull but Strand of the Ancients is excellent and now rivals Eye of the Storm as my favourite battleground. Moreover, now when I play, I am improving myself for a purpose - to become deadlier (well, lets be modest, more annoying) than I was before.
I'm enjoying it - a lot - far more than I ever thought I could enjoy PvP. I'm even considering chancing my hand with arena somehow...but that might have to wait until the future!