Maybe WoW needs to take a lesson from Elder Scrolls Online on this one, where they took out the tutorial island and made it optional. Maybe WoW should take out level mechanics from end-game content. Maybe everyone should be “level-synced” to the same level when doing things like raiding or PvP. Problem solved. Then you could level at your own pace, have fun with the leveling and the questing, and still be able to participate in the “end-game” whenever you wanted.
I think the need to be max level devalues WOW power leveling tremendously. Leveling can be a lot of fun, especially if you don’t have that “I must be max NAO so I can raid” pressure looming over you. It’s like building a model rather than buying an assembled toy: the building of it can be a lot of fun, so long as there isn’t a huge crowd of friends with their built toys waiting on you to finish building yours so you can play with them.
I mean, Blizzard acknowledges this directly with their reason for including a level 90 with the new expansion:
To get everyone straight to the action, when you buy the expansion, it will come with a boost to level 90 for one character on your WoW account.
It’s right there. You want to be in the action, you want to be playing the game, but you can’t until you get to level 90. So they’ll do it once. Once? Shouldn’t they just set the base starting level for new characters to 90?
Or, even better, why not give players a drop-down box: whenever you make a new character, it can be any level between 1 and the highest other level character on your account? That way you can level if you want, or end-game if you want.