I'd thought the L75-L79 BG range was the worst for leveling via BGs. The Cata gear entering in at L77-L78 skewed the BG fairly heavily toward the top end of the BG, even more so than the average leveling BG due to the compressed nature of an entire expac to five levels. Having gone through that range twice now, once with a Lock in Cata and now on my Rogue in Mists, I figured I knew what I was talking about.
Seems that I was wrong.
When my Rogue hit L80 and entered into this BG field, with Blizz's internal adjustments my health was about 52-53k. I saw L84s with 84-90k health, and figured it wasn't too bad all things considering. I knew I'd have to run through either Vashj'ir or Hyjal to get enough Cata gear to compensate for losing most of my old Wrath and BoA gear*, although I had enough Honor farmed to get some good L270 PvP gear.
Things just looked better than the L75-L79 range, and I breathed a sigh of relief. Mists was in sight.
The first few battlegrounds I got into --Isle of Conquest, Eye of the Storm, and Warsong Gulch-- I was able to contribute to. I wasn't a terror out there, as I wasn't high enough level or had enough gear, but I held my own and wasn't a drag on the teams. Well, let's be realistic here: Children's Week bringing in a lot of unskilled PvPers helped me considerably.
Then came last night.
I was in an IoC battleground, and we'd quickly stormed the Horde Keep. I and two other people held back to defend the Keep while the rest went after Overlord Agmar. A lone Warlock showed up and gave battle, which even though Locks are much improved over the Cata version**, a Hunter, Druid and Rogue (me) should have no trouble dispatching him.
He blew through us in 20 seconds.
"What the hell was that?" I asked as we were waiting by the Spirit Guide.
"Did you see him?" the Druid added as we ran back to the Keep. "He had 180k health!"
"All I knew is that he one-shotted me and I had 66k!"
We made it back to the Keep and were joined by two more toons. It didn't help, as it took the Lock a mere 25 seconds to dispatch us all.
"Skip D-ing the Horde Keep," a DK said. "Just run in and kill the boss!"
"No kidding," I grumbled. "The Lock is more powerful than the boss!"
Needless to say, the Lock all by himself managed to win IoC for the Horde.
I was still shaking my head over this when I got into an Arathi Basin run. While the Horde didn't have a 180k health Lock roaming around, they had about half of their team over 100k.
"This is ridiculous," a DK said. "I might be able to take on one of them, but not a whole side. Just go ahead and let them 5 cap so we can get this over with."
"So Blizz didn't close that loophole in the gear that they started with Cata?"
"No, they didn't. What makes it worse is that while they can't queue up for it, a toon can be invited into a group running a Mists dungeon so they can get Mists blue gear. You've got guilds running their twinks through multiple runs just to get tricked out."
"And I thought L75-79 was bad. At least I didn't get one-shotted there."
"Yeah, the gear inflation isn't linear between Wrath Cata and MoP."
Well, it looks like my prediction about the BG issues back in Cata has come to pass in Mists. If Blizz isn't going to allow toons to migrate straight to Cata and Mists from L78 and L83 respectively, they ought to move the low end Cata and Mists gear to a requirement of L80 and L85. While the gear discrepancy is bad enough between Wrath and Cata, the non-linear nature of gear inflation has made it progressively worse between Cata and Mists. And while Blizz attempted to level things out a bit by raising the health level of the new L80s in battlegrounds, the L84s with access to blue Mists gear far outstrip any manual intervention Blizz accomplished.
I'm not going to hold my breath on any corrections any time soon, because this is the second expac that Blizz has let this go; obviously, they gain more by leaving things as they were than actually fixing this discrepancy. But from where I sit, this is just as bad as how weak Warlocks were in Cata. And we know how Blizz addressed that, don't we?
*I ended up with two Toxidunk Daggers due to the generosity of a fellow Rogue on the Ysera server, who saw I was at L78 and in AV at the time. The Rogue didn't want any gold, he just wanted to give the daggers to someone who was going to use them in BGs. Who said that Rogues were disreputable people, anyway? ;-)
**Apologies to Cynwise, but I felt like an old man griping that "I leveled a Lock via BGs when it was HARD, back in Cata, and all these young whippersnappers don't know what it's like to be Rogue chow!"