I must confess: I like PvP, a lot. Perhaps this has something to do with the inordinate amount of time I spent playing Counter-Strike with my friends in college, or just a basic need to show off my 3l33t skills. But the bottom line is that I've been spending a lot of time in World of Warcraft's Battlegrounds lately, trying to climb up the ladder and equip my avatar with a nice armor set.
Here is my problem though: I am at rank 8 (Legionnaire) and I'm stuck. In fact I've been stuck there for weeks. This is really a problem since I cannot complete my coveted armor set until I reach rank 10! But I also have the luxury of some fresh data about PvP play patterns that Nick, Eric and I computed recently - why not look at some numbers and see if they could help?
Using our data we can approximate how many hours of weekly play time it takes to move from one PvP rank to the next (see previous link for the full analysis, and this other post for a more complete overview of the limitations of the data). It turns out that reaching rank 5 (Sergeant Major / First Sergeant) requires spending about 20 hours per week in the game - about the average weekly play time for most MMORPG gamers, it turns out, and pretty close to the maximum I can personally invest in the game. But then the curve ramps up steeply: Legionaire requires almost a 30 hours/week commitment, and Field Marshal / Warlord (rank 13) almost 80 hours/week!
So much for my shiny new armor... I simply cannot compete with this level of commitment. I guess I will have to turn to raiding now (or not). Or maybe I should just wait for the expansion: Blizzard apparently decided to rework the PvP system entirely - a recognition that the current system is broken, perhaps?