Levels should be removed from World of WarCraft entirely. They serve very little purpose. I’m not talking about removing content, or removing zones, or removing anything in the game except for the act of leveling up. If you want to explore, read some lore, or progress you still can, but remove the worthless gate holding people back.
WoW begins at the end. Everything up to that point is just busy work. The argument that it teaches people how to play their class is invalid since players reach the max level and are still capable of being terrible — not to mention leveling and doing max level content are nothing alike. The only valid and irrefutable counter-point to this whole thing is if someone truly enjoys leveling up in WoW — not just the content (which I enjoy) but the act of having to level and progress to reach the new stuff at the end. Read on the end where I offer up at least one likely solution.
The game is already moving people in this direction. Skills aren’t trained anymore. Talents function similar to Diablo 3 abilities where you choose between a couple each tier. Time to level has been reduced so much that much of the content is now missed/skipped/worthless.
Make all content in the game the same “level” and have all players be the same “level”. If someone wants to go to The Barrens and kill raptors, Dragonblight to hunt drakes, or some Panda zone to do whatever they do then the can the moment they make their character. Normalize all zone content; Maybe do it how GW2 scales zones if making it all the same can’t be done.
Dungeons and Raids would still be the same. The justice/valor point system would still work, just for every dungeon. The same gear seasons and treadmill resets can happen. Essentially NOTHING changes but the leveling up part. The point is to get people to the point where the real game begins without presenting them with a major annoyance. “But Keen, I think leveling up is the real game and who are you to tell me I can’t play the game the way I want to play?” Well person with a valid thought, you’re still free to go do the content. Do it all. Do it in any order you want. WoW has just reached that point where the leveling is worthless.
If this is a true themepark, go all the way. If I want to ride space mountain before the tea cups, I will! There will still be the pregnancy warning on Indiana Jones and you’re still going to have to be ‘this tall’ (have the right gear level) to enter some of the harder content.
I guarantee this is in WoW’s future. If not this extreme, players will be able to make characters instantly max level and make leveling optional. Mark my words.