While I don’t know how meaningful the number will be compared to the number of players there will be at launch, having the sub requirement gives you a better idea that everyone who signs up is probably serious about playing. If everyone can make characters for free then there will be a lot of people that aren’t actually gonna play and meaninglessly inflates their numbers. This also presents the bullshit problem that somebody that never intended to play takes your name without having ever subbed. Which also introduces the thing that would 100% happen (and still probably will tbf, but less likely and slightly less sheisty in any case) that people will claim names to sell. 

WOW Battle for Nazjatar is a new World PvP event in patch 8.2 Rise of Azshara. Players will try to control five points in Nazjatar during the battle, and earn Nazjatar Battle Commendation for rewards like Essences and Inkscale Deepseeker mount. How to join in WOW Battle for Nazjatar? In special WOW Battle for Nazjatar World PvP event in WOW patch 8.2, each faction tries to control five points in Nazjatar during... 

This is the lamest excuse to try and pin it on a cash grab. Tbh this is just you complaining to complain, there is no issue. If you wanted to play classic on launch you'd have to sub before hand anyways you're still paying month to month you don't pay by week. The only way you'd lose that money is if you quit before your sub ran out later on down the road.
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