Alright, first up! Combat. So far, I'm enjoying it. It's a gigantic step up from the combat I remember from the first few months I played in 1.0, although a big part of that was UI lag. I was originally disappointed to hear that auto-attack was making its way back into the game, but with a fairly quick cool down on skills that doesn't seem to be an issue. So far it is seemingly fairly simple, although right now I will attribute that to still being in the learning stages of the game. I haven't become familiar enough with finer details like enmity management or the importance that various stats play on each character, but I'm enjoying what I'm seeing so far.
I've enjoyed dungeons so far as well, and even though I've only done lower level, light party dungeons, I'm excited to try out more. Seeing some bosses and missions that involve interesting mechanics is a nice addition IMO.
Now for crafting, I love some additions like the quick synthesis option, which makes crafting a decent amount of low level items to supplement other crafts no longer a chore. I also love that they added the crafting log into the game rather than putting it up on the lodestone as it was in 1.0. More methods of keeping information in the game rather than encouraging you to go check a web site is a plus IMO. Although I don't feel that the relationship between crafting and other classes is as strong as it once was. Between leveling being very quick, and items and equipment being obtained cheaply and easily through various means, it seems that many classes simply don't have as much incentive to purchase crafted goods, at least before end game (which I have no clue about, as my highest classes are still low 40s). Also, crafters no longer seem to even need a market, since tradecraft leves give absurd amounts of experience points. I touched on this in my other thread, but once everything settles, if things remain they are, it's likely that everyone who wants to level crafting will be able to get most, if not all, crafting classes to 50 in their spare time within a few months by simply saving leve allowances and burning them up. This seems to trivialize crafting classes, which I do find unfortunate since one of the original aspects of this game I was looking forward to was the heavy emphasis on crafting and gathering classes.
Lastly, atmosphere. I like that the zones are more varied, and the Black Shroud not being a gigantic grid had to happen (on a side note, I just realized that this grid-like zone is right outside of GRIDania. Well I thought it was funny...moving on!). There's a few things I miss from 1.0, mainly the soundtrack which I found to be beautiful in places like La Noscea, Gridania, Thanalan, and Coerthas. Speaking of Coerthas, I'm a little sad to see it in its current state. The original zone was serene, with music that had my jaw dropping and the eerie Castle just sitting there in the background. The new one feels fairly generic by comparison. There's nothing particularly wrong with the zone itself, but it just seems like, well, another zone, rather than the awe I felt when I saw the original.
Well, I think that's everything for now. Again, these are all my personal opinions, feel free to agree to disagree.