UPDATE – Darthregis pointed out a math error in the table. I've updated the post and table.
The actual count for Cata is 11 zones (previously stated: 14). You can read the comments for my conclusions on how this happened (hint: anatomical limitations)
Hey, I'm a frostamancer, not a mathamancer. If I was meant to count past 10, I would have more hands.
Regardless of the lower number, Cata is still perfectly competitive with the previous expansions. Nice to have a margin for error, in this case, since error did occur.
It's seems to be popular amongst the blogeratti to say - in a dismissive fashion - that Cataclysm is in some way inferior to other expansions because it doesn't have very many zones.
I did some quick poking around. Let me share this table with you.
Compare to BC's 10 and WotLK's 13 zones and suddenly Cata doesn't really fall so flat. So let's drop that argument.
One might object that three of the zones for Cata are all part of one mega-zone named Vashj'ir, but even so, that would change Cata from
14 11 to 12 9 zones. Not a huge difference, and not, say, half of the previous two.
I realize that some may consider Wintergrasp in WotLK, and I'm OK with that. Traditionally, PvP zones aren't counted in such surveys. However, since you can visit and do things in it in between battles, it would be reasonable to accept WG, especially in light of Tol Barad showing up under Cata's header (though it has a non-PvP half, which is what I counted). So, feel free to add WG, or take TB out. Doesn't really alter the tally drastically and does nothing to support the argument that Cata is deficient in zone count - (added) at least not in the way that most people characterize it.