So Blizzard have done what to be honest I thought they would never do and put 10 man and 25 man raiding on an equal par for Cataclysm.
I never saw this coming as all through Wrath Blizz have put 25 mans on a higher pedestal i.e. you want Shadowmourn get in there and do 25s or you can whistle. The only thing I would have thought Blizz may have done was share the raid lockouts so you cant do 25 man then do 10 man on off days. This would give strict 10 man guilds a chance on server firsts as the 25 mans guilds would be unlikely to burn early raid time lockouts doing 10 mans.
However it looks like they have gone the whole hog with 10s and 25 mans sharing loot table and lockouts. The only advantage in 25 mans now is better droprate on stuff and the chance if you have a bigger guild to all raid together rather than in separate teams.
I checked out a lot of the blogs I read Such as Pink Pigtail Inn, Big Bear Butt and a few others who tend to be good barometers of the community.
Opinion seems to be split as you would expect. Some people being worried that 25 mans wont be worth the hassle now especially with the logistical difficulties of getting 25 people together at a time. While others see this as a chance for 10 man content to be taken seriously and 10 man only guilds to have a shot if they want it at server firsts and cutting edge progressions which has previously been the domain of the high end 25 man guilds on the servers who can come in with better gear straight away.
I have not really had time today to check out the official boards but my guess is there is so much QQ going on as there is for most changes that Noah better build another Ark.
My personal view is that I am all for this! As I have stated before the thing I didn't like about 25 man raiding when I was organising it was the huge amount of pissing about I had to do just to get the signup sorted and people in the right groups etc etc etc. Yes this was in BC where you had to worry about shammy buffs only being group wide etc but most of the difficulty wasn't in the actual raid it was in making sure everyone knew what they were doing before we started.
Compare this with Wrath and my strict 10 man guild and we are busting some moves in heroic ICC already and are making great progress at only two nights a week we have a tight team who plays together all the time and are moving in the same direction i.e. there is no dross who you have to take to make up the numbers. Also as a druid healer I don't just get to cast rejuvenation and wild growth all day on the raid I can find myself tank healing on Blood Prince Council or a bit of both on Lady Deathwisper.
How will this change the landscape of 25 mans I don't know. But I suspect there will be a lot more 10 man guilds in Cataclysm or guilds that run two 10 man teams. I think it will have a big impact as a lot of people do raid for gear and to "keep up with the Joneses" so if the incentive of gear is gone some guilds will fall or "downsize". One thing I will say for Blizz is they have no fear of throwing a Nuclear hand grenade into the game now and again.