Ok, so I gave in and installed World of Warcraft last night, after saying I was trying not to get sucked back into the game. I’m just playing the free-to-level-20 “Starter Edition” for now, using it as an opportunity to explore the improved levelling experience, and classes/races I’ve never played before.
One thing that immediately struck me as I was levelling a Hunter through Elwynn Forest: I’ve never seen the starting areas so busy. Even with the small bump of users a new expansion brings, starter zones are usually pretty quiet in my experience. Northshire Abbey was packed, as were various quest-related areas throughout the zone. I can’t remember seeing Elwynn that busy — ever — in the ~11-12 years I’ve played the game.
It seems that even in a world of level-110 character boosts, levelling up the long way has finally come back into fashion.