I grew up on a PvP server. I first started playing WoW with my real life best friend, his brother, a co-worker of his, and another good friend and former roommate. Given that there were five of us, we made the perfect leveling group and for the most part stayed within 5 levels of each other all the way to 60. We had two warriors, two mages, and a priest. Clearly, we competed on drops but being good real life friends there was never any drama. We rolled Horde on a PvP server.
In the early levels, we quested and did our thing in the Barrens and Silverpine forest and later moved up into Ashenvale, our first PvP zone. Other than a couple of brief scraps, we quested and instanced in Ashenvale without encountering many Alliance players at all.
Then we went to Hillsbrad.
Ask me today why I consider myself a Serial Ganker and I will scream my battlecry, “Remember Hillsbrad!!” It didn’t help that we hit those levels right about the time AV first bust out onto the scene and the zone started generating all this level 60 traffic. We got creamed. One shot after one shot after one shot. To make matters worse, the main Horde quest chain for the area, “Battle of Hillsbrad” takes you right into a bunch of mobs that are friendly to Alliance. Even lowbies who want to get in a few shots on some Horde can engage you here with the benefit of the NPCs and easily wipe small groups.
By level 30, I absolutely HATED the Alliance with a VENGEANCE. And then I went to Stranglethorn Vale…
STV is the zone where Alliance learn to hate the Horde. In part, because the Grom’Gol is a convenient place for Horde to set their hearth or use for traveling to the any of the higher level zones south of the Wetlands. Also in part because all the lowbie Horde with their newfound hatred for Alliance just left Hillsbrad. Mix all this up and STV is part questing zone and part battlegrounds. Only, it spans 15 levels, so the level 30 players are just as likely to run into a level 45.
By the time I made it out of those zones, my blood boiled whenever I saw Alliance and by this point my charter was clear: Anytime, anywhere, regardless of the cost, the Alliance must die. Words to live by when you live on a PvP server.
About 3 months after BC came out, my group of real life friends decided to roll on a PvE server as Alliance. I hated it. Passionately. Biggest gaming mistake I ever made. Seriously. I rolled a Rogue, leveled him to 70, did some heroics and never quite fit in. I think talking about how you wanted to gank them in vent might have been a bit anti-social…
I also found the whole experience of leveling up much more boring. On a PvP server, you learn to constantly monitor your surroundings to avoid getting ganked. On a PvE server, you just kill, loot, kill, loot, kill, loot. Long story short, 6 months later, I was leveling up a Troll Rogue on my original PvP server.
Only this time I made a list using the addon VanasKoS of everyone who ganked me while I leveled. Paybacks are a bitch.