The grind you describe is just an excuse for the powerlevel-people. I certainly don't have the feeling to grind when leveling up, just the opposite actually. Even a while before I've seen every event (which do have nice contexts, little non generic stories... if you take the time to experience those - it's really your choice) I'm at a level where I could go to other zones. The scaling-back makes it possible to experience a zone further without oneshotting everything because I'm 5 levels too high.
Grinding mobs isn't even a good idea, since you'll get more experience if you move to new locations instead of killing the same mobs over and over again. Have you heard of bonus-xp?
Legendaries are a long-term goal and not required for anything. They don't even have better stats. People who grind for legendaries are responsible for their experience - I certainly don't powergrind those mats because I get those while playing anyway... I'm ok with getting a legendary 2 years from now, without grinding those mats.
Well I't depends on how you look at it. The farmer (heart npc) will remember you, when you've filled his heart, he has new dialogue options and he will sell you stuff which wasn't available to strangers who talk to him. The npcs are very aware that they live in a hostile environment and that bandits might hit the farm again, but this is part of a living breathing world. So it is true, they remember you. If you don't believe me, go back to a filled heart and actually read what he has to say. Does it sound like talking to a stranger to you? For me it doesn't.Second point on their manifesto that was not true, is at 1:48, when Ree Soesbee says this:
"as a structure, MMOs have lost the ability to make the players feel like a hero, everybody is doing the same things you're doing, the boss you just killed respawns 10 minutes later, it doesn't care, that I'm there."
I disagree of course. The storyline of wow and of SWTOR do wonders to make you feel like a hero, with a gripping story and awesome memorable characters (Hunter and Watcher X on SWTOR are my most memorable characters, while Thrall and Muradin are my favorites in Warcraft). But I digress. The point is, in GW2, everyone is doing the same things I'm doing, and bosses I just killed respawn 10 minutes (I'm sorry, I meant to say 5 minutes) later, and it really didn't cared that I'm there.
Ohh yeah, that farmer is being attacked by bandits who are pilfering her crops, and kidnaping her moas (I think she said moas) I killed dozens of them, completed the renown heart, and she even sent me a letter saying how her life is perfect. Except I show up at her farm and its still crawling with bandits, which are still stealing the crops. My actions had no lasting impact at all. And there's other players doing what I just did mere minutes before. So that line was bullshit.
If you do the same things over and over again, it's just your fault. You have a choice there: do the things you find fun or go on and find new events. The big thing here: you have the choice. In games where you can do quests only once, the area where you're in loses content while yo're playing in it. The world gets emptier the longer you play. Once you're max level and have done all the quests, you've only a max. level zone and some daily quests. GW2's content gets more and more, the higher you are. Low level zones don't get trivial since you still have a chance to get level-appropriate rewards + you get scaled back so you're at the level of the zone.
---------- Post added 2012-12-31 at 05:23 PM ----------
Happy New Year!!