For some reason I decided to gear up my rogue in PvP, so I have been doing a lot of Ashran.
There are basically three things to do in Ashran:
* The road battle. It proceeds from flag to flag, going north if the alliance wins and south if the horde wins, until one faction has seven minutes or so to kill the other faction boss. Then there's a half-hour cooldown before it starts again. It awards
350 conquest points50 honor points and, once per day, a gold strongbox which occasionally contains a conquest item.
* The four event areas. Each of these has a daily objective to kill NPCs which awards honor, and a periodic event which either the alliance or horde wins. If you're present when your side wins, you get
150100 conquest points, with no daily limit. After each event there is a half-hour cooldown, then a 10-minute period where the event can randomly announce, and then a three-minute timer before the event begins.
* Killing rares. These drop a lot of artifact fragments (which can be converted to honor), but they can't be soloed and I don't see groups doing them all that often. They also drop class books and other Ashran-specific items. You also get 25 conquest points from killing the other faction's warlock portal, big road NPC, or ogre champion (when they first spawn).
There is often a queue to get in. The queueing system is currently terrible because they didn't originally plan to have one; there is no estimated time, it doesn't make much noise when it pops up, and you have to confirm within an hour. It's supposed to get better in 6.1. You get teleported in when you accept, so you don't have to stay in Stormshield while you're in queue.
There is usually one big group, which you can get auto-invited to (if it isn't full) by saying "invite" in general chat. If you run AshranBuddy, it will show you timers for each of the four events (gray if on cooldown, red if on 10-minute random announce, blue if announced, green if in progress). Groups tend to focus on events and the road battle. Doing the road battle usually means missing a few events. Events can also happen simultaneously, making it mostly impossible to get both.
The success of the alliance group is highly variable; I've been in a lot of really successful groups, especially late in the evening, and a lot of groups which lack focus and get overrun by the horde. Even in bad groups you can usually pick up some conquest when the events happen in quick succession, or by doing the road battle when the horde is focused on events. Groups tend to work best when they have an active, unquestioned leader, ideally one who threatens to kick people from the group if they don't go where the group is.
If you get a lot of artifact fragments, are prone to dying, and still need honor, you'll want to turn in fragments often as you lose half your supply when you die. The intro quests will give you a device with charges which lets you turn in fragments remotely, and you can also get scrolls of town portal which can save time.
Melee do not do especially well in evenly matched massed combat. I generally hold back and kill enemies who come in too far, or go off to the sides and try to kill people who drift away from the group, or stunlock a healer for a few seconds and run back to my side, or try to gank enemy reinforcement as they trickle in.
The most fun moments are big, competitive 40v40 battles during events, where it's not obvious which side will win and the nature of the event forces the two sides not to stay in big massed groups. Or when one side outnumbers the other but comes in during the middle of the event after the other side has already started, so it's a race to finish the event or wipe the other side's group before they can finish.