I am afraid both of you are missing the point. First of all I would say if you left the game 5 years ago you are hardly in a position so criticize the game now since neither of you are playing it. Interesting you both feel Pandaria was the cutoff point since it is generally considered to be one of the best and most innovative expansions. Granted it lasted for too long but the content and story was very good. Graphics Schmafics . The graphics are just fine. Wow was never about cutting edge graphics anyway and will never be. The graphics are actually very good from the point of view of graphics art. The color scheme is interesting atmospheric and consistent giving the game real identity, something ESO completely lack.
And the tech, as you put it is cutting edge having all the, behind the scenes advanced features lacking in most other MMORPGs such as group finder tools, cross server technology, zone phasing and many others. I have played a plethora of other MMORPGs including ESO, LOTRO, SWOL, Wildstar and others all lacking some or all of those features.
I admit the latest expansion has been pretty bad and I think Blizzard is aware of that and is seeking to rectify the mistakes made.