“Father, is it over?”
“At long last. No King rules forever, my son”
“I see ... only darkness before me”
Yes, WoW was never a game that took itself 100% serious. And that's a good thing. A bit of humor by breaking the immersion sells well. But over the years, the tendency to add ever more slapstick humor among the developers grew ever stronger. And I didn't approve. But until now, at its very core, World of Warcraft always was about things that matter.
What has changed with MoP is the core of the game. The immersion-breaking slapstick humor has finally taken over. And it now rules the game. Maybe I shouldn't be surprised after the numerous holiday events and the goblin starter zone. But while Goblins may have been silly on the surface, you always suspected something deeper inside them. With Pandas it is the other way round! Maybe Blizzard manages to make them appear serious on the outside, but they will always be silly at their core.
What's very interesting to note is this: I always criticized the direction the gameplay took since mid-TBC. The entire philosophy of World of Warcraft moved towards a place I didn't like. But what finally broke the camel's neck wasn't gameplay: it was the the style. Remembering what happened to Ultima Online and Star Wars Galaxies, this may not even be such a big surprise. But hopefully it is a lesson for future developers: DON'T SWITCH THE TARGET AUDIENCE!
Meaning: Expand, don't reinvent.
If you ever wanted to read a lot of comments that basically say 'no'. Here's a good link.