With the information released about having a market ward specifically geared for each type of item I believe SE is taking a small step in the right direction. However, this does not solve the problem of consolidating these type of items to each specific ward.
Now I fully love the look of the market wards and the concept behind them, but believe one major change could please both people who prefer the look of the market ward and those who want an AH.
I believe SE should keep the idea of market wards, but instead of having it filled with retainers we hire it should be filled with NPC's. Have one NPC at each stand (no more retainers cluttered wherever they can fit making the wards look like crap). Instead of us having our retainers carry our goods we should upload all the good we want to sell to a centralized location (just like any AH). The big change is instead of accessing one major AH, we would go to each market ward and access a NPC who would access only certain gear from a central AH. Here is an example using the Hatters Ward (which will be geared towards head gear):
In this ward you have something like 10 stands. What SE could do is have each stand segmented for a specific level range. Say one NPC would carry all level 1-10 head gear. The next would carry the level 10-15 head gear and so on. When you talk to each npc they would only access this section of the central AH on which all our items are listed.
I feel this change would keep the look of the market ward alot of us love as well as give us the ease of use so many of use desire. Also, this would allow possibly for a FFXIVAH.com to be set up (I assume) since it will be NPC driven and not PC retainer driven. Let me know what everyone thinks of this idea.
In short - Have NPCs in each ward that lets us view a central AH for gear only specific to that ward and divided between each NPC (either by each NPC having a specific level range or type of that specific gear).
Edited, Oct 2nd 2010 10:45am by EklmForever