I didn't play the original Guild Wars and I didn't participate in GW2 beta, so this past Saturday was my very first exposure to every facet--skills, traits, races, professions, HUD, engine, etc. My decision to purchase the title was a bit whimsical, as I have been *over* MMORPGs for several years. After winning UO, I tried some of the other MMORPGs, but didn't find them appealing in the slightest. GW2, though, looked different. It has been. Here are a few reasons that I love it. First, I like the personal story facet. In some ways, it captures what UO attempted to do: even amid other players, you are the hero, the avatar. Second, I love that I am awarded experience for exploration and dynamic events. My most advanced character is only level 15, but I have done zero grinding to make it there. Instead, I've spent my time exploring the map to find overlooks and points of interest. Every time I find one, I earn experience. In between finding them, I constantly stumble upon different dynamic events, for which I also earn experience (and find cool gear). I've had no downtime and no drudgery. Third, I love the balance of the professions. I can play a pure mage without accompaniment by a tank; I can take down the same creatures with a similar level thief as I can with a similar level ranger/pet. Fourth, I love that regardless of my profession, I have to choose between 5-10 skills/spells/abilities at a time. I do not miss having 30 macros + 30 spell icons on my desktop. Fifth, I love the choose-your-own-adventure-ness (<-new, copyrighted phrase) of the decisions. Am I going to save the hospital or the orphanage? Do I pursue the badguy or wait for reinforcements and risk his escape? Do I kill the prisoner, keep him safe, or turn a blind eye and let my companions rough him up? I'm still a huge noob. Don't know how best to invest my traits or skill points, so I haven't. Haven't bought any armor, nor used the market. Haven't begun to explore crafting. But I feel like that's ok. I'm having fun w/o responsibility.