To be honest, the old PvP grind didn't do it for me. It was a time sink, much like endgame raiding, and I only had room in my heart and life for BWL. To put in 80+ hours a week to hit Grand Marshall wasn't something I was prepared or able to do. And so PvP became a slight social distraction for me when my guild asked me to fill out an Arathi Basin group, or I had a long time to wait for a lasagna to defrost.
A quick primer on the new PvP reward system for the uninitiated: You earn honor from killing opponents, completing objectives in each of the three BG's - Warsong Gulch (WSG), Arathi Basin (AB), and Alterac Valley (AV). You gain tokens called "Mark of Honor" from participating in each BG which are unique to that BG. You get 1 token for a loss, 3 for a win. By turning in both tokens and honor points, you can purchase new PvP gear, in both rare and epic form. Go read this forum post for a better, longer breakdown.
This is how it is as I make a thorough commitment to check out the new PvP reward system. How thorough? Well, I'm taking my Orc Hunter, who's equipped in 4 pieces of Beaststalker, 4 pieces of Black Dragonscale, with a bow 10-levels old, and I'm going to commit myself to the Battlegrounds until I earn the epic bow and 6-piece epic hunter set.
Yes, 118125 honor points, 110 Arathi Basin tokens, 50 Alterac Valley tokens, and 30 WSG tokens.
If my first afternoon in the BG's is any indicator, this could take a long long while.
I've been joining the BG's solo for most of the day, sometimes with a friend (who's now deserted me for a guild pvp group!). With rare exception, I've been on the losing end of every battle.
So, what did 4 hours of PVP get me? So far 2 WSG tokens, 1 AV token, and 15 AB tokens. Not a bad start. How are the honor points? Not as good - my PvP tab shows about 4200 points for the day's efforts. This 30% reduction in earned honor is going to hurt.
So, if this is consistent - 1 battle is about 20 minutes, which nets me 1 token and 250 honor. I'm scared to do the math, but let's forge ahead anyway.
In 64 hours I'll have the tokens I need for my 7 pieces of loot. Unfortunately, it looks like 158 hours of my life will be consumed in trying to get the honor I need to go with those tokens. That's a lot of hours to spend for 7 pieces of gear. Of course, they're better than I can find soloing, and you could argue it'd take at least that much time working your way up in a raiding guild.
I'll come back and update once a week with how I'm progressing, and to get your take on the new PvP system - is the grind worth the reward? Got any tips for those of us just starting to explore PvP as a way to enjoy the game? Post in the comments below.