Thursday, April 30, 2009

For the Children, or "Terror for Tots"

Dusty's the kind of girl who puts kids in orphanages -- or sweatshops, if it would make her money. Birdfall would put up with the kids and even care about their welfare, but she'd treat them like responsibilities, like a duty. It's my draenei warrior who likes kids the most. :) She tells them jokes and stories and teaches them cool stuff like how to spit without getting it on your shoes.

This is a list of preparations for the For the Children achievement, which awards the title "Matron" for females and "Patron" for males.

  • Delicious Chocolate Cake -- Cooking Profession (AH) -- 8 Simple Flour, 4 Ice Cold Milk, 4 Mild Spices, 8 Small Egg, 1 Flask of Port, 3 Mageroyal
  • Tasty Cupcake -- 350 Cooking Profession (AH) -- 1 Northern Egg, 2 Simple Flour
  • Red Velvet Cupcake (Lvl 75) -- Aimee (Dalaran)
  • Lovely Cake (Lvl 75) -- Aimee (Dalaran)
  • Dalaran Brownie (Lvl 75) -- Aimee (Dalaran)
  • Dalaran Doughnut (Lvl 70) -- Aimee (Dalaran)
Aimee is by the northern bank in Dalaran.

If you can cook those first two, feel free. They are drops from the cooking daily (cake) and world (cupcake). You can also make money selling cakes and cupcakes on the AH, or even farming materials (low levels, go farm small eggs).

Tigule and Foror's Strawberry Ice Cream is sold in Org and Stormwind during Children's Week, by the banks. It's required for the Azeroth orphan quest as well as this achievement.

Daily Quest + Orphan

Do 5 dailys with your orphan out -- no time restrictions, no counter reset, just sometime this week. This was a hotfix to nerf the 1 a day for 5 days, though they haven't fixed the achievement text. Working as intended.

If you need to find a daily, I always found the easiest to be the Kalu'ak dailies. The other easiest is the cooking daily, if you have all the mats at hand, because you get to stay in Dalaran to do it.

Utgarde Pinnacle + Orphan
Level 80 Instance

This will be the hardest for lower levels and solo players. The only thing I can recommend is looking for a Normal (non-heroic) group in the appropriate channels and be willing to go tank or heals if you need to. Also, prepare to do this on the very first day. Later in the week, it'll be harder to find an interested pick-up-group, particularly on low-pop servers.

Hearth With Orphan Out

After Utgarde, you might as well hearth home away from that little brat. That'll get you another necessary achievement.


No way to sugarcoat this one. It'll be the toughest for 80's. Utgarde Pinnacle is toughest for anyone lower than 75. This one will just take perserverence, knowledge, and plenty of luck. This will also be a good week to battleground for marks for mounts, because people who don't normally battleground will be very involved. Fewer twinks, more people running around trying to complete the following achievements rather than applying skilled strategy. Most of your enemies won't care about winning this week as much as getting their achievements.
  • Warsong Gulch -- This will be the hardest for many. You must help kill the enemy flag carrier and return the flag that he drops with your orphan out. The trick to this is spam-clicking the spot where it will drop right before he dies. I know several people who have yet to return one flag ever because everyone around the enemy will be spam-clicking -- that's just what you do. The easiest way to get this is to arrange full premades with friends where you give each other free flag returns.
  • Arathi Basin -- This is one of the easiest. Just keep playing until you manage to nab one of the five points with your orphan out. The best strategy is to go where the enemy isn't and attack weak points. Go in with a premade or partial premade for best coordination.
  • Eye of the Storm -- Still pretty easy, especially if your team is winning. Keep at least one of the four points and dominate the center of the map, where the flag is. Pick it up with your orphan out and run it to a point you own to capture and earn the achievement. Lots of chances for this.
  • Alterac Valley -- Assault a Tower. Alliance assault these Horde towers. Horde assault these Alliance Towers. The group will go in and take out the enemy mobs. Head straight to the flag and grab it while the others wipe up the mobs. Here's hoping I got those towers mapped right -- not so sure about the Horde positions as I usually attack Alliance.

Tomorrow, I'll begin to cover any new portions of this holiday. The data mined "Curious Gorloc Hatchling" and "Curious Wolvar Pup" hint at Northrend orphans connected to the Oracles and Frenzyheart in Sholazar Basin, but we'll see.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tales of Begging, or "Give Me Gold or I'll Make Fun of Your Arena Rating"

I post these things because I'm always surprised they happen. I know by now that such people exist, but it's always a little bit of a shock.

Anyway, basic story is I'm gaining TB rep in Mulgore and a level 3 wants 1g to learn his "moves" (which confused the crap out of me at first -- who calls training "moves"?). You need maybe a few copper, maybe a handful of silver to learn skills that low. You get the cash for it while doing the quests.

He said he had a high level character that could pay me back. Obviously, if his alt has that much money he doesn't need any from me.

So, to avoid getting screwed over by a complete stranger, and because I'm a huge believer in Do It Yourself, I said no and recommended he run to the next town and have his alt send him cash. That is what I do. It is not an unreasonable suggestion.

Then he starts making fun of my arena ratings.

Which makes me really regret not giving him the money. Obviously.

The funny thing is, he made fun of my ratings when Dusty isn't on an arena team. Plum is. And Plum goes to WG more than she does arenas, so her rating sucks. And . . . I don't really care. XD In fact, Dusty has more accomplishments than Plum but he stuck to PVP achievements, not PVE.

Anyway. I thought it was weird and psychotic and thus worth sharing.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

More Tourney Mounts, or "Blizzard Bringing Dragonhawks Closer"

WoW Insider and Warcraft Mounts report the coming change to the Argent Tournament -- 10 mounts will be added and the current mounts will be deeply discounted (all except the flyer).

If you get one of the current mounts at the current price, it will switch to the new mount (same price) when the patch hits. The current mounts will be available for 5 [Champion Seal]s and a fistful of gold (400g at exalted, non-faction must be exalted to purchase the old ones).

The patch itself will be a minor patch before 3.2. No news on what they look like except they'll represent the faction's colors more accurately:
. . . faction mounts offered by vendors on the Argent Tournament grounds will have their visual appearances improved. You will find that the mounts being offered will better match the colors of the faction you chose to represent. (Nethaera)
They call this an improvement, so I'm hoping it'll be wicked-spiffy and not just more basic recolors (though the white skeletal warhorse is A+ material, and you know how I feel about the raptor). But the rest look just like the normal mounts you get from city vendors and have no special feel to them.

So I think the changes will be a good thing, especially for the alliance (since theirs were the least impressive).

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Noblegarden 2009, or "Bunnies, Bunnies Everywhere"

Every morning as the dawn breaks, my cat insists on burrowing under the blankets so he doesn't have to see it.

Good dawn, and welcome to Noblegarden 2009.

I recommend starting somewhere not-so-popular for your grinding, though eggs will always be spawned no matter the crowd. Worst case scenario, you have to share.

You also must stay in the town itself. The eggs aren't zonewide anymore, they're townwide, usually inside a bush or in a nook or cranny on the ground. Follow the runners and note where they pause to check for eggs.

  • Great Egg Hunt - 20 shell fragments
  • Tisket, Tasket - 10 chocolates
Just loot eggs.

Egg Strategies

Zoom around using your basket and take every egg you find or camp a spawn point.

The trick is that campers rely on runners to respawn their eggs by getting the excess, so if there aren't a lot of people in the area you're better off being a runner and picking up the slack.


I got 146 eggs by camping a 3-spawn point for almost two hours. Each egg drops ONE thing at a time, so you either get chocolate or loot but never both. My haul:
  • 135 Chocolates
  • 5 Blossoming Branch
  • 2 Elegant Dress
  • 1 Bunny Ears
  • 1 Tux Pants
  • 1 Tux Shirt
  • 1 Rabbit Pet
  • 1 Spring Bouquet
That gives me plenty of chocolate left to buy the robe that plants flowers and the reusable egg, and I can grind out just a few more later for the 100 I need to eat (the 25 for the first achievement counts toward the 100).

I also want to note that I clicked off every bunny buff so I could say with authority that I got all of these as a humanoid and the bunny buff doesn't affect your droprates (for the RNG mystics).

[edit] Going back to get my last 20-30 chocolates I got a Spring Robe, a second Bouquet, and a third Elegant Dress. Moral of the Story: Definitely don't buy anything until you have all your edible chocolates. :)

New Goodies

I went over what you could get and what it did in a previous post. Two new things/changes.

The Tisket, Tasket quest awards a permanent egg basket. You can't use it to run fast except during the holiday in the egg-spawn areas, but it's a cute item to have all the same.

The Polymorph: Rabbit tome is definitely available for 100 chocolates. It's BOP and only mages can see it. This means mages have another 100 chocolates to grind out, but the good news is that you'll get most of (if not all) the other necessary drops while you're grinding. You also need level 60 to use it, but that's no reason not to get it now.

So if going for the tome and achievements, you need a minimum of 200 chocolates if you get everything else as a drop.

Tour d'Azeroth

These are the places you need to go to get things done. At this point, you should have all the materials for the trek -- pretty much one of everything.

The green dots are where you plant flowers with your robe (just step into the zone and use it, don't have to be any more specific than that) and Un'goro Crater, where you have to go to the hot spring in the west and beg someone to trade rabbit costume uses with you. The goal in Un'goro is to lay an egg near the springs (doesn't have to be in the water). I strongly suggest not just trading but sticking around for a few minutes and giving a few of your extras away.

The pink and blue dots are for mating your bunny with other bunnies in the egg spawn areas (the level 5 towns linked at the top of this post) plus the city where you have to spawn an egg of your own (this time not out of your fluffy little butt) with your 5-chocolate egg. This egg is one you can put down and loot just like the starter zone eggs.

Tips and Annoyances

These are minor by anyone's standards, but.

When you get rabbit eared, click it off right away so others can toss theirs on you, particularly if there's a crowd and/or you're a rare race. It is frustrating enough to have to sit for 5 minutes waiting for the item cooldown, but it's ten times worse when an extra 2 minutes gets tacked on to the wait because of a clueless ear-ee.

When you camp an egg, camp it. Don't sit there for half a minute tabbed out thinking I won't take it if you dawdle. My egg respawn relies on you picking up your egg, so for the love of all that is pixelated, KEEP THINGS MOVING.


Noblegarden is actually a lot milder than the other holidays we've been having. I completed all the objectives in a day with more than one long break for church, food, and shredding 3 years of documents with our new ULTRA POWERFUL shredder.

There is nothing anyone can have to complain about with this event, unless it's something about other players, which is an eternal subject of strife. But even though people in General Chat talked about "egg ninjas" and "level 70 campers," I'll be happy if that's the worst we're going to get for this pleasant little holiday.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Tournament Love, or "Blue and Purple and Unavailable to Birdy"

Can I just take a moment to say that I love the Darkspear Raptor? It's so freakin' girly!

Unfortunately, it's in Birdfall's colors and not Dusty's, so I don't think I'll get a lot of use out of it unless I force myself. Also, Dusty has the extra Sad Factor of being shadow and mounts not really showing in shadowform.

I know some people think "Shadowform's so COOL!" but when you've spent hours putting together an outfit and mount to coordinate down to the trim on your robe, it's kind of annoying to be one big block of black. It's also hard to remember to click shadowform off in town, since you're so busy (or, at least, I am), and it's foolish to click it off OUT of town, since you might get ganked (or, for you normal server sillies, ambushed by mobs).

So the idea of using this mount on Dusty seems impractical.

But . . . when has that ever stopped me?

I'm also pretty psyched by one of the Darnassus Champions -- she's Birdfall's twin. Dusty fights her every single day and I pretend she's fighting Birdfall. ^_^

Don't hate me for my RP. It's all I have to survive this PVP wasteland. RP, a supportive guild, mountains of stockpiled gold, and blood relatives I can con into doing anything for me. That's all. I'm languishing, I tell you!

Notice: Noblegarden Tomorrow

Even if you're not interested in joining the festivities, show your goodwill to others by breaking out any 18+ females and trotting them into a nearby city. If you want to be very helpful, you can also sit and click off the bunny ear buff so that people can throw it on you repeatedly.

Children's Week starts just before Noblegarden ends. Check your in-game calendars!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Professional, or "Handling Day-to-Day Gemcutting"

So I'm in Dalaran by the horde bank, hanging out with my new gruntling, feeding him pet food and thinking up other mean things to do to him, and the following scene plays out behind me. I gathered from their different guild names, the chat log, and the fact that Athrasie did the crafting animation at one point, that they were strangers conducting a gemcutting transaction.

They part ways. Fin.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Argent Tournament Part 3, or "Champion"

<--- Part 2: Valiant

Before You Get Champion Dailies

Pick up [Valiant's Challenge].

Find Squire Danny on the west side of the ring just north of the western tent. Talk to him, beat a Champion. If you feel comfortable, toss in a few charges to the rotation I suggested before.

Argent Tournament Part 2, or "Valiant"

<--- Part 1: Aspirant

Pre-Champion: Learning to Valiant

Monday, April 20, 2009

Recommended, or "Role-Play Blogs For U"

You might have noticed by now that I don't have a blogroll. This isn't just because I think the word "blog" sounds like someone vomiting -- it's also because I read a very accurate piece of advice once about websites -- if you have links to other websites, people will go to other websites. Since then, and because I'm too nice to tell some people yes and others no and I really do care about the quality of my links, I don't link to other websites unless I run them. I keep everything internal unless I have to link a source.

That said, I like to read about role-playing and found a few blogs dedicated to the subject that I'm going to read through, and I figured I'd link them for you in case you wanted to join me in perusing the subject. I know I'm late to the game on finding these (I don't read many other blogs -- I like writing, but otherwise I'm in game or browsing comics), but this is just in case anyone else is a clueless moo like me.

RP Only Blogs
  • Blogatelle -- Well-thought-out posts by a team of role players.
  • RP Made Simple -- Delves into RP for the newbies and those who don't RP. Also has resources for veterans but mostly focuses on the clueless.
RP Sometimes Blogs

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Lucky, or "Collectors Across WoW Hate My Guild Leader"

Today my guild leader, Teo, got not only the Sprite Darter Hatchling on the first drop but also a Sea Turtle after a 6 hour grind (El's Anglin' predicted something closer to a 40 hour grind).

Jiriki, a regular commenter, mentioned on a recent post that he and his friends had found the Sprite Darter drop to be a lot better than originally predicted -- they found it to be something like 1 in 20. I went to confirm this with Teo (an avid pet collector) and my brother-in-law-in-law (who just likes to hang out). Teo accidentally auto-looted the first drop and ... you guessed it ... got the pet. We spent another 40 minutes before one dropped for me, but the respawn rate was excellent and easily supported four people grinding nonstop.

The only drawback to the fantastic grinding accommodations for the pet is that, as Jiriki mentioned to me, it's bind-on-pickup. So if anyone already has it and is helping you, have them turn off auto-loot or right-click their portrait and put pass on loot to "yes."

Argent Tournament Part 1, or "Aspirant"

I'll give you a quick overview of how to get started with the Argent Tournament.

Argent Tournament

As I've mentioned before, it's not the arena tournament. That's PVP. This is just a set of permanent dailies in the far northeast of Icecrown. You can port from Krasus' Landing but need level 77 to participate. The quests send you across the map, so it's good have well-connected flight points or an epic flyer.

One thing I love is that the campground for the tournament is a sanctuary, like Shattrah or Dalaran. PVP is not only frowned upon, it's impossible.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

3.1 Today, or "Mountses and Petses, Woot!"

I've been MIA both here and in my guild while I get Birdfall closer to 80 because The Argent Tournament is kind of snobby about its dailies -- lower levels can't do them.

Alas, Birdy is only 73, but that still means I got 11 levels in fairly short order. I figure I can work on the dailies for Dusty and take my time on Birdy.


For those of you who've been a little slow learning about the pets coming in the Argent Tourney, it will be reasonably good business to begin trading your faction pets through the neutral AH. If you don't have a character stationed at Booty Bay or Gadgetzan, I suggest getting one set up soon. I got a level 1 gnome to Booty Bay through The Barrens, so no level complaints for u! Just accept that you'll die and keep to the roads whenever possible. (If you don't have a DK yet and don't expect to ever use one, congratulations. You just found your neutral bank.)

While I can't promise A.T. pet trading will be the best business, it will still be reasonable business, and you'll be doing your server a service by helping people get pets they want. I expect prices to be a little inflated at first and then settle into a good chunk of gold (normal vendor pets go 5-10g, these pets might run 30-50g on average). Either way, they'll be a decent source of income because they require a bit of a grind and because that grind also gives you more income. It's a win-win.

Sea Turtle

I'm very sorry to say that the turtle has turned an angry and unfriendly blue, per Mania's warcraftmounts news section (click her screenshot link). She says it's lovely, I say it's time to beg husband for a splurge on TCG.

I don't think I'm going to put in the hours to bother on this one. It was going to be my first priority, but. I never bothered with Magical Crawdad because I didn't love it, though I expect to do it eventually (ever hear a word more loaded with procrastination?), and I won't bother trying to farm this, either.

Actually crying now. /sigh Half expected it, but WoW Insider never reports on important things like this, so I didn't see it when someone fished it up 2 weeks ago.

More Better News

Um... other stuff is happening. Like Noblegarden, and then Children's Week. As usual, look forward to coverage of the stuff I like and leaving out stuff I don't like. XD Because I'm reliable like that.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Contest Winner, or "Nine Entries Enter the Hat... One Comes Out"

A green hat. It's juuuust too small to be comfortable to wear, so I stick to my other hats. Have I mentioned I like hats? I have, like, 5.

Enough about hats. You want to see the winner, and I'm thrilled to say he's a recurring commenter not only here but also on The Family Business. :)

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you:

Viktor (aka Lamora)!

Grats to Viktor, and I hope to see a screenshot of you using it soon. :) You should have the code when you next check your email, along with instructions on how to implement it.

For anyone who gets their own loot card, I'll repeat those instructions here:
  1. Go to this page and enter the character you want to have the Tiger along with your promotion code.
  2. Write down or copy/paste the new code they give you.
  3. Log on to the character you chose to receive the item.
  4. Go to Booty Bay and find Landro Longshot on the docks.
  5. Make sure your bags have room.
  6. Select the appropriate choice to find your card name, then enter the code you wrote down or copied into the panel.
  7. The item will appear in your bags.
Congratulations. :)

Contest ended at midnight last night but I gave it until I woke up for people in very different timezones. I also forgot to call my dad for his birthday yesterday. O.o

[edit] Lamora on Tiger!

Yay! Image from Viktor's blog.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Meme, or "Tag, I'm It"

I got tagged for a meme, and while I'm not entirely sure what a meme is, I gather it has to do with answering a list of questions in a communal bloggerly sort of fashion that inspires fellow feeling among... um... bloggers. XD

So here we go.

1. Word Association

Elf :: Ears (been looking up how to sculpt them for a doll project)

Shard :: Epic (been disenchanting and wanting pretty shards)

Epic :: Pants (who doesn't want great pants?)

Cream :: Wainscoting (don't look at me like that -- earlier, I was trying to remember a line in a book I wrote, the character looks up at the decorative detail at the top of the wall, and I can't remember the word for it, but the color was cream. Wainscoting is all I came up with.)

2. When emote annoys you the most?

/spit There's never a polite reason to use it.

3. Gnome punting… bullying or sport?

Bullying if you're alliance. Sport if you're horde.

4. What in game food that makes you hungry IRL?

Red velvet cupcakes. I'm a sucker for red velvet cake. I think it's the icing. Not too sweet, not too plain.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Notice: One More Day for Contest!

You have all of Friday to enter for your chance to win the Sandbox Tiger loot card. It's a cute toy and completely free -- just enter a brief RP description of one of your characters.

See details of the contest here. ^-^

Sunday, April 5, 2009

L33T, or "Aficionado of Cute Pwns Hardcore 5-Mans, Wha?"

As a purveyor of all things cute and snuggly and pink, I have often felt stereotyping acutely insofar as "only hardcores can be skilled." A moderate player, I felt relief from constant community pigeon-holing when my family group got Watch Him Die in less than an hour last Saturday and, today, one-shot Volazj's Quick Demise and spent 5 attempts in Occulus with only amber drakes to get both Ruby Void and Emerald Void.

If you will note the announcements pasted into the middle of my Glory of the Hero progress, you'll note that not only did we get Ruby and Emerald, but it was my very first time doing heroic Occulus.

This isn't me bragging as much as just being glad that I have proof that I'm not a scrub, and that moderates and even casuals can be just as skilled as anyone.

Drrum's Pets, or "Find What to Wear"

Not only does Drrum (found through warcraftpets) show us artistic screenshots of pets on Papa Hummel's Biscuits (which make pets grow very large) but she(?) also includes a list of all clothing in the screenshots.

So if you're looking for a cool pet or an RP set, look no further than Drrum's gallery.

Even if you don't care about the details of the screenshots, the screenshots themselves are artistic and worth viewing. Drrum put a lot of time and effort into these.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Gambling, or "I Kind of Wish It WAS Illegal"

Today I entered Orgrimmar for filling up my Org and Darkspear rep bars (almost exalted!) and saw a guy offering a gambling platform -- win a little if you roll over 70, win double if you roll 100, win nothing if you roll under 70.

I ignored him, mentioned in gchat that I find it annoying, and my guild leader said it was bannable.

I thought "Well, the guy should know that" so I unignored and whispered him.

He said he'd talked to a GM the night before, and the GM had said as long as he doesn't scam anyone, he can gamble with them. I called him on it and asked if I'd get the same response if I talked to a different GM. He said yes. I believed him, because if he'd been lying he would have gotten flustered and defensive.

I said my guild leader was sure it was bannable and I'd look into it for my own curiosity, though I found gambling advertising annoying, and had just wanted to warn him if it was bannable. He said okay and we left it at that.

I didn't remember anything about gambling in the rules and penalties I'd gone through for my penalties post, so I went on the official forums and found the following Blue Post by Vrakthris from a week ago (March 26, 2009):
As stated in a previous thread by Malkorix.

Q u o t e:
Casinos are, in and of themselves, not currently against our policies.

That said, we are monitoring the practice and the overall response to it very, very actively.

As I stated in my prior post:
While this practice may not, in an of itself, necessarily represent a violation at the moment, there are activities associated with running an in-game casino which certainly can represent violations; such as spamming or scamming.

Also, if it appears that this practice is being abused or is simply having a deleterious effect on the game play environment, we are certainly willing to revise our stance on the subject. Please remember that our ultimate goal is to provide the best and most fun environment for all our players.

It remains unwise to run an in-game casino, as it is inherently risky. Merely because you can do something does not mean that you should.

There are actually a couple of threads about this issue on the first two pages. Here is my response in one of them.

Q u o t e:
As Thunderwulf pointed out, Sli, we have addressed these types of threads already. We are Game Masters though, not Developers or Policy Makers, we are only able to uphold the policies that are currently in place.

If you would like to see our policies change you are welcome to post on our Suggestion Forums with your views.

Although our currently policies do not technically prohibit casinos our policies have not changed regarding Spamming or Scamming, thus many the associated behaviors that come with a casino may be found to be against our Term
s of Use. Please report any possible violations you find accordingly and we'll investigate and take appropriate actions.
Game Master, Customer Service Forums - In-Game Support

This is very recent. Back in 2005, Blizzard banned in-game gambling establishments, which accounts for most people's confusion over the validity of the new wave of gamblers. (Thanks to brother-in-law-in-law for the link.)

So, no, casinos and gambling are not bannable anymore in the game, but they might go back. I find them annoying because they take me out of the game environment and provide reminders of one of the least scrupulous forms of making money in the real world. As you may recall, "The house always wins." And it is often those who can least afford it who are taken in.

For every winner in a gambling scenario, there are many more losers. I do not like greed and I do not like taking advantage of people, and gambling provides opportunity for both even when it's conducted without either scam or spam. There is no regulation inside the game for how to conduct a gambling ring, either, so players can offer unreasonably bad odds, odds that verge toward scamming, without real penalty as long as they stand by their word and pay out when someone wins.

To me, gambling is always a scam because the people running it will always have the edge. After all, they designed the game.

Friday, April 3, 2009

State of PVP, or "I Still Like Battlegrounds"

Right now, Wintergrasp is the best way to get honor and Archavon (can be run by whomever holds Wintergrasp) is the best way to get PVP gear.

This means that most of the experienced players (at least in my battlegroup) are keeping to Wintergrasp and Arenas and don't even bother with battlegrounds anymore. Joining a battleground by yourself promises a frustrating loss and joining with a partial team doesn't guarantee victory. I went with my family group to an AB the other day and our pick-up players were so bad that though my group (3 dps, 2 healers) kept taking and defending the points the enemy attacked, we still lost the game.

So why would anyone in their right mind care about battlegrounds anymore, aside from those rare instances where you go in with your own premade?

Mount farming.

You need marks to buy the 6 available PVP mounts, and these mounts are straightforward to solo grind. After checking his hunter's battleground log, my husband found that he had a 50-50 ratio of wins and losses for everything but AV (alliance doesn't sign on our battlegroup). Taking that ratio into account, here are my statistics:
This is given with the understanding that you cannot stack beyond 100 of a mark in your currency tab.

Why the extra 50 for AV? Your AV vendor has an extra mount for 50 marks of Alterac Valley.

While you're doing Alterac Valley, if you still don't have your city reps up, there are repeatable quests you can do only while the battleground is happening that give rep per turn-in. I encourage you to do all the quests for that city first because the rep isn't much, but at least it's something -- and a lot cheaper than runecloth turn-ins.

Other PVP Mounts

300 Stone Keeper Shards will get you the smaller War Mammoth in Wintergrasp. Archavon has the bigger one (with passenger seats) as a drop in the 10 and 25-man.

The 2 Halaa Dark Talbuks require that you kill 170 players in Halaa and farm 700 Oshu'gun powder (makes 35 tokens) from all the animals in Nagrand. Put together a raid in your faction, let the other faction know when you're doing it, and kill each other for a few hours. You share kills with raid members, so this shouldn't be a problem once you get around to it.