RNG - she is a fickle woman isn't she? I'm probably about to shoot myself in the foot here, but I've had pretty decent odds with this lady. From getting both my Thunderfury bindings in under a month back in Vanilla, to winning a roll on the Val'anyr, to snagging a certain favorite doll - my luck has always been fairly good.
There are times however when you can't really depend on luck, and when you can really put forth the energy to control your own destiny (so to speak). About a week or two ago, I took a gander at Kurn's BIS (pre-raid) list. Most of the items were pretty self explanatory, but two distinct items stood out in my mind.
The first was an old friend that I remembered from Wrath, though he'd grown up some and gotten some beef on his shoulders. I'm talking about the latest healing Darkmoon card here - the Darkmoon Card: Tsunami. Packing 321 INT and a stacking Spirit buff (up to 400 SPI), this is the ultimate pre-raid trinket as far as I can tell. No on use to worry about, and lots of what we love.
The second item was the little doll - Tyrande's Favorite Doll. With the same 321 INT buff, as well as a on use mana return (up to 4200/2min), this looked like another serious contender in the pre-raid setup. While there can be lots of arguments made that 4200 mana every 2 min isn't a whole lot, it really starts to look good when I stack it with Arcane Torrent.
When I last logged out, I had about 91,000 mana. 6% of that is 5460, about the equivalent of 1.5 returns from judging, though this will scale with maximum mana instead of remaining static. The point though, is that when I combine Arcane Torrent with the Doll, I get 9600 mana back - more than I would get back with an unglyphed Divine Plea. And without the 50% healing debuff as well. These returns are also instant, which means I'm not waiting on DP to tick, and I will be able to use them multiple times per encounter. Mmmm.
Now about the control
Over the last week I dropped about 33,000 gold, and a whole lot of time, to farm these two babies up. Yes, I farmed the AH. While I didn't have any control of the posting of the Darkmoon cards, or the RNG that Blizzard would assign to my archeology, they were things that I could work on without needing a group/raid to do. I didn't have to worry about losing a roll to someone in a PUG, or if someone in the raid might benifit from these items more.
Like enchants and gems, these kinds of itmes are things that you can work on as an individual to set yourself up for raiding. All it takes is time (and/or a lot of gold), and a little bit of RNG luck.
Many thanks to Kurn for posting that list, otherwise these two gems might have escaped my notice.