As predicted the new achievement system is considerably more restrictive than the older one albeit quicker to rush through if you’re very focused on the daily or have very wide gaming tastes.
The nine-or-so tasks are divided equally into PVE, PVP and WVW, the latter two both being player vs player activities (of a different scale). This leaves me with a possible choice of three out of four PVE tasks per day. It’s very directed as the tasks are much more specific, for example instead of gathering X resources of any type it’s now “gather plants in zone Y or Z. Same with specific boss kills instead of “kill X champions”. Zubon of Kill Ten Rats has a good post about the implications of this change and I agree with the sentiments expressed:
PvE dailies are the big change. This seems like another step in the continuing march away from the pre-launch design philosophy, here away from “play however you like.”
I rather dislike the tasks being so specific. Example: I was playing my guardian again (now level 51) and wanted to concentrate on his personal story and doing some zone exploration. But to complete the daily I’d have to go to Queensdale and one of the Asuran starter areas plus I’d also have to survive in the Silverwastes long enough to complete four events. The latter proved completely impossible since I couldn’t do enough damage to get credit for events completing. Sure I could swap onto my level 80 mesmer to complete the daily since it’s an account level achievement but why should I have to be swapping alts just to do this? It wasn’t that way before!
The daily reward system for logging in appears as in the above screenshot, I can’t say I have much to say about it, though it’s consistent with the game’s evolution towards showering players with endless loot and random loot bag.
Stepping back from these recent changes I’m left with the same feeling about the game that I had last time I stopped playing. We may think to login to unlock living story chapters going forward but I think only a fundamental revamp of the combat system would make me reconsider the game as anything more than an occasional distraction.