Keeping in mind I haven't played an MMOG since Asheron's Call first came out, here is my scoop on WOW.
WOW! I like it. I could immediately tell who had been working on this game just by the mechanics and the way things were laid out. I felt as if I was playing UO and Everquest in one neat little package. The thing that most reminded me of UO is the terrain. I like how most cities are very close to each other, and things are divided into smaller areas for quests and such. The terrain reminds me so much of UO, especially because of the guard towers. I remember being quite afraid of those back in 1999 since my character was usually a red one.
I haven't done any PvP, but I did grind to level 9 in one evening. I hate that part, but I was pleased by how things were meant to trick you into getting your ass kicked. I also like the way you rez right by your corpse, and the zones don't take long to load like EQ. I also liked that I could play on my air card with only an Edge connection and still had minimal latency.
The nice thing about starting a game after it has been out a long time, is that you don't have to deal with as many assholes. The downside is that there aren't as many assholes around to help you out with cash and equipment.
The quest engine seemed to work great, and I love the experience for exploring new areas. I also liked that for the most part, if you stick to the road, you don't get killed a whole bunch. I had to go quite a ways away from my home town before I was plastered into dust by a couple of agro mobs on the road. I also like the flight paths so you don't need a mage, and the tram that travels underground to the dwarven city was too cool. Graphics were good, sound was good, and the options are excellent. It really seems like they put some real work into this game, and it is obviously showing up in the number of accounts.
I like the way most of the adventure is layed out just off the path of the roads, and the fact that you can solo if you stay on the outskirts of each encounter. It is still hard to solo, but so far, it hasn't been impossible. I don't know about the harder levels yet... I laughed when I saw someone offering 10 siver to people to strip and dance. I couldn't believe someone thought up the Michael Jackson moves and even the Macarena. I haven't seen it all yet, but those cracked me up.
I had to read the credits to see who I knew from EQ and UO, and sure enough, I saw someone very fimilar. Old Tom "Evocare" Chilton is one of the Lead Designers. Congrats to you my friend. I can see your input in there, along with the other folks you have working with you. The list of folks doing the game is huge!
I noticed there are a lot of PvP servers. I wonder if that is just because the game is older, or if the stigma of people losing stuff and fighting is not so harsh as before.
Anyway, I just wanted to throw out my 2 cents on the game. I personally want to play World of StarCraft, but that is another story...