I don’t have a magic wand for this one. I don’t really even have any crazy ideas. I don’t think Blizzard does either. Server merges have such a stigma attached to them, it seems they will avoid it at all costs. Maybe that is the play here. The bold move.
I do think the best solution to the low server issue might be to merge the lower ones together. The unfortunate part of this is- you will still need to feed toons into these servers. This is probably the biggest failure and it’s solely on Blizzard’s shoulders. If you are playing the game for the first time you have no idea what servers are or how to pick one. I have no idea how my buddy picked the one we are one. One thing, for whatever reason- our server seems to have a steady flow of new people. A lot of people leave. There is almost no horde presence. A lot of people come back to visit and troll. But we get a consistent flow of people.
Blizzard needs to come up with a way to keep it’s servers populated. Really populated- not the artificial CRZ “populated”. So perhaps when you roll a new toon, it “suggests” or places you on a server. It would give you the option to play on a server if you know one. Maybe they could offer incentives to move to less populated servers? They need to establish or “normalize” what the population should be like. Maybe a tutorial when you are in the starter zone to educate people on the different types of realms. Maybe you don’t pick a server until after you hit the starter area. Then as you get ready to leave it asks you what server you would like to pick or have one picked for you? OK, maybe I had a crazy idea after all? Who knew?
The other option? CRZ everything. CRZ auction house. CRZ guilds. So servers will no longer matter. This option makes me shudder a little. I think I would feel more like a number than a name. They would need to update the UI in the auction house. They would also need to start moderating public chats. If you don’t know what I am talking about- roll a toon on Cenarion Circle or Argent Dawn and wander over to Goldshire. Read /1 general chat for a minute. You will only need a minute. This is what we can come to expect more of if we get more CRZ or “super servers”. Not really looking forward to that.