Tipster Nimm writes in to let us know that several EU battlegroups have been having serious issues after mergers that occurred post-patch 3.02. The mergers have seen a number of battlegroups acquiring servers with other language-dominant populations, which has resulted in a number of French, German, Portuguese, Spanish, and Russian-dominant servers (among others) all in the same battlegroups. While this is probably necessary to a certain degree to guarantee equal Alliance/Horde populations for quick queue times, it's become something of a communication nightmare in battleground matches, particularly those with lots of players using Cyrillic characters. As the player Thoughtless from the Karazhan realm asks, "Can you imagine how hard it is to organise any sort of teamplay in AB with player ???????? from <????????> guild cha(t)ting "?????? ??? ??????? ??????? ?????" in BG chat?" Nimm also notes that differentiating between ??????? enemy players is a nightmare.

We knew that Blizzard was closing four EU realms (Stonemaul, Molten Core, Shadowmoon, and Warsong) and transferring remaining players to other realms in response to Russian player migration to Russian realms opened late summer 2008, and the problem's partially the result of that (which has already resulted in the inevitable "In Soviet Russia, battlegroups merge you" joke). A few amused people are rising to the occasion by translating such phrases as inc 5 schmiede (inc 5 blacksmith in German) or proposing a revival of Esperanto, but the Russian language pack would be the only possible solution for the ???? problem. There's been mention made that this is only a temporary fix on Blizzard's part to faction imbalances on battlegroups, but if you're on an EU realm that's seen a recent battlegroup merge, just be aware that Babelfish might be a useful tool in the near future.

This article was originally published on WoW Insider.