Besides the news about the coming World Mergers, Kabam also released some more info about other changes coming in the next update:
There are a number of popular requests making their way into the January v12.1 update
– 3D World Maps will now be optionable via an on/off toggle in the settings menu
– Incoming Attack Alert Icons will be added to the “My Cities” view
– Two new City tiles for Pearl Boats will be added to Lake-town
– The Battle Cry and Shield Walls cap will be raised to 150 (from 127). This will be the final amount of these items that can be applied per player.
So Lake-town is going to be slightly more useful, and all those extra perm buffs 😦 can be put to use now, for the select group who have them.