World of Warcraft: Classic artwork of the Onyxia battle

When it comes to World of Warcraft: Classic, there has been no feature more controversial than the layering system. Essentially, the layering system allows Blizzard to have servers within servers, all in an effort to ensure that there are plenty of players in each zone, as well as to avoid the extremely lengthy queue times that have marked the early days of the original World of Warcraft.

While the layering system has done its job admirably in this regard, it has also caused a couple of issues. Most notably, players aware of how the layering system works were able to constantly shift between them and farm rare materials almost endlessly. Blizzard quickly put a stop to this by introducing a variety of restrictions so things never really got out of hand, though the core problem still remained.

As such, I am very glad to say that Blizzard has now not only drastically scaled back on the number of layers present on most realms, but are also preparing to remove them entirely! In fact, a couple of realms in both EU and US region are already down to one layer, while the rest have been reduced to a mere two layers! So if you're curious about why some of the lower level zones have suddenly burst with activity, that would be the reason.

"Over the five weeks since we launched WoW Classic, we’ve continuously monitored realm populations and utilized layering when necessary to handle launch populations," reads the developer update. "As we’ve said before, we will have all realms on a single layer before introducing world bosses, and a great deal of progress has been made toward that goal."

"First and foremost, players have leveled up and spread out around the world. This allowed us to accommodate more players per layer, which means fewer layers required per realm. The last time a server in this region [EU] had more than three layers was the first week of September, and almost all realms reached two layers shortly after that."

You can read a little bit more about this layering change, as well as figure out which realms have already moved to a single layer, by visiting either the US Forums or the EU Forums. Happy leveling!

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