I too really liked the concept and theme of BFA, and I can kinda get what you mean by having that ‘vanilla’ feel of Horde vs Alliance. I really liked the intro cinematic as well. Very well done by the devs! It really made me want to fight with honor for the Alliance
I also really liked the introduction of warmode. No more having to pay for server transfers if I’m in the mood, or not in the mood for world pvp. If I want peace, I can have it. If I want to explore while taking risks of being ganked, I can have it. Plus bonus rewards for taking risks of being ganked! Great idea by the devs IMO
However what disappointed me was lack of pvp vendors in an expansion that seemed very pvp themed to me. Sure there were random pvp drops and there was a chance they were socketed, but you had to be a high rating 2100 or higher to actually get any half-way decent pvp gear. Otherwise you were forced to pve for all your gear in order to do pvp content which makes very little sense; especially when in previous expansions there was always pve gear for pve with pve vendors, and pvp gear for pvp with pvp vendors and that gear was also good for that specific content. I’m glad to see they listened to community feedback and brought back pvp vendors, but it took a very long time before they finally did. On top of that I thought there was going to be a world pvp dedicated zone similar to Ashran, and while they did eventually introduce Battle for Nazjatar, and it was kind of fun, it really lacked any decent rewards for the pvp community to make use of.
Despite the expansion’s flaws dedicating myself to pvp in BFA was a good time for me, and I learned a lot about WoW pvp in general at this time so it was a good experience. I think if they had pvp vendors in BFA like they did in previous expansions, BFA would have been more popular and well received by the community, and we would have seen more content patches before Shadowlands was to be released