at Quark's wrote:
What was the real-world reason behind changing the warp scale for TNG, anyway? I believe I remember reading that they didn't want to muddle around with ever-higher warp numbers...
It's pretty much that. I believe there was a sense--likely by Roddenberry--that without any kind of limit, warp factors can become silly afterwhile and also make the Galaxy seem like a small place by having our heroes cross it in the blink of an eye.
but really, what would have been the harm in letting zip starships around at warp 17? By the time VOY ended, they wouldn't have been anywhere near ordering speeds like 'warp 8472' ....
And that may have been due only to "Eugene's Limit" keeping the numbers somewhat
in check. But I tend to think that if Roddenberry had known they'd eventually come up with stuff like "Warp 9.975," he probably would have just drawn the line at Warp 17 or so.
I really do believe Roddenberry was honestly trying to simplify the warp scale by establishing Warp 10 as an absolute value. The new scale only starts getting "stoopid fast" past Warp 9.1, IMO--but otherwise it's generally just twice as fast as the TOS scale from Warp 2 to Warp 9.
The irony, of course, is that neither the TNG or TOS scales really fit onscreen material all that well anyway, nor is there an actual difference between them ever mentioned anywhere.