q1- Coming off of the discussion so far, yeah, I think that having the world bosses would be a good counter-balance. This would also bring a good deal of world pvp and competition for the kill since there would be no legit content yet. For the game, doing this would be good for us.
q2- I'm in the same boat as you, I have not healed much this xpac but did a great deal of it in the years before. Providing the model can come close to before, yes it is for more of our bread and butter heals. It is devalued because of the unpredictability and no where near as consistent as other throughout-put stats. I know this will get some lashings, but I firmly believe the model was much better with down-ranking, granted we had less stuff to use. A good player knew when, where, and not to use what in nearly all situations. An efficient smart healer I would take any day over someone with huge hps but sketchy on control.
q3- Shouldn't be at a disadvantage, but the fights will dictate that. Every fight should be doable with a reasonable comp with decent players behind them, no doubt. But some fights are better for some classes than others, yes, and it should stay that way. I miss the days that it really mattered who you brought, it made things feel epic. Not that people shouldn't be comparable, I say that and not equal because we are not in a vacuum. There should always be an "Ideal" make up for each fight specially in the earliest days due to being undergeared, and what is performing the best then. Still they should and will be feasible to do without that ideal, but there is no strict disadvantage either. A great player is fine no matter what the class, as long as that is what is needed. Our first hm blackhorn kill (@10% 10m)was done with 3 melee because we didn't have a choice that week so long ago. Ideal, no but still was able to do so and those that run 10m on that fight understand the woes of us melee on that one.
q4- In other games, the inflation like this isn't as bad as it is being played as. There is such a huge fixation on ilvl that it blinds people. And no I am not saying this because I'm not geared, my main is 407 and I've not touched a raid since 15%. Sure all of us would love to be able to say we are full "double-heroic" my epeen bounces at that, same as everyone else. This is a gear driven game no matter what.
But, this model could very well work as the heroic raiders will having something to keep them going in farm times. If we could have a double heroic set right now, I am sure my guild would still be raiding ds now and not playing other games while we wait. There is no reason that it should be limited to just pre-heroic gear. When t15 comes out, us heroic raiders are rarely going to see an upgrade from normal mode anyhow. They could put it to half step between tiers or something, because honestly we would still use some Ht14 until mid t15, hell I still had my 391 domo chest because of shit loot all the way til we had madness.
The normal mode raider would strive to do more content so even more gear is there. This could help said players make it into heroic raiding. Do I think it should bring it up to equals of a heroic piece, no; you want heroic gear, do heroic content. But I think there should be a stepping stone for those who put the effort in to help the transition and further themselves.
The lfr/df player would see the most benefit from this. Again I still think it shouldn't take it fully to the next level of content but close. This would bring more players into raiding and remember raiders are still the minority, specially hm raiders. Alts would also fall near here too, this makes for a easier "catch-up".
q5-class calls are good as long as they can implement good. Not only class, but having a fight from time to time with some random to it isn't bad. NO I do not mean rhyo, that is way too much random. Reacting is good for the brain, and if you can mindlessly plow through a fight then it isn't worth being a fight. Not to be confused with I am meaning gear check fights, as those are needed too.
q6-I agree, I have no issue with "borrowing" ideas from other games. I pay the company just like you, and myself as the customer want the best quality of life I can get. Do you get mad at a car company for using a good idea from another car? Hell no, you love every minute of it, and pity the fool who doesn't have that feature. Blizzard is just people too, and sometimes ideas don't hit their head fast enough, or maybe they have an idea but are kind of skiddish to use it. Then someone else has that same idea, it works, and they go about making it work here. That is just something that happens in nearly every industry in the world. If ideas didn't get shared/used by other companies then we would still be in colonies, sitting by candle light, under the English...
q7- Sadly the "average" player would have a culture shock when it happens, but those of us reading this are not the average player. Most probably know how to do the research, but for the everyday "casual" and I hate to use that, I am glad they are doing the what has changed thing.
I am glad blizzard is realizing things like this, because when I think of this I think of my Mom. Yes strange but just before firelands my mom started playing this game. She wanted to pick up a new hobby with my youngest bro since 1 bro and I no longer live with her. Her sister and bro-in-law had always into mmo's and that is where I got my start in them back in the UO/eq1 days with my aunt and uncle and this was a perfect time to see what the fuss was all about.
Now she isn't a full on raider, she does lfr/df/pvp often enough and I've dragged her to some raids before as well. But by all means doesn't keep up with the theory-crafting or anything like that it was either all self taught or learned from myself. Little steps like this by blizzard helps out for these kind of players. There will always be some that have never read a forum post, never seen a fansite, or a youtube guide. Blizzard should put some good effort into bridging this gap, even if we don't need it, someone might.
q8- Racials should be good, there needs to be a line drawn in the sand over how powerful they are. Don't need to be so strong that everyone is forced to roll one, but still in the range. There will always be one that is the theoretical best/worst at least for dps because that can be mathed out. Does that mean every other one is not to be used? Nah, my main is STILL a Tauren DPS DK. Would I benefit more from being a goblin/orc? No doubt. Am I broken? Hell no, I can rank in parses just as easy as any other dk of equal gear. I tank *cough* occasionally now-a-days (I say that because I was forced to tank since eq1 til late wrath) and I pvp often. My racials offer me no dps benefit, but they have helped me survive in some clutch moments. I am quite attached to my rotten cowman.
You made some comments on about a few priests and racials. Sure a tauren priest would get some snickers in a more serious raid environment, but one of our spriests in FL was a cow, and his warstomp was very welcome on rag. Not that a goblin wouldn't have been better but we still used him well enough. And for undead priests, actually if it was a priest that had been around a long time, that was the best race for ages. Devouring plague started off as an undead priest only ability, then later moved its way into the home of the rest. Not to mention that undead is still a very viable option as pvp, as that is where the racials benefit the most, granted underused. They also have the best casting animations (imo you may vary)which was why my priest/lock has been undead since I made them both on the very first day of wow. Both of them will stay that way too probably the same for my dk staying a cow, and the same as you going back to belf.
For the next batch of clones, under NO circumstance, do you tell them they are adopted. Lesson learned - July 2007.