I've been playing the beta for the upcoming MMO Vanguard, Saga of Heroes. It's claim to fame is that it's being created by several people who were behind the original Everquest, and is billiing itself as an MMO that will emphasize grouping. They want Vanguard to have a sense of challenge (without being too frustrating, of course...), and are looking to slow things down a bit from the rollercoaster pace of MMOs like WoW and EQ2 (as it is now).
In addition to the standard adventuring and crafting as ways to advance, it will add 'diplomacy' as an all new track to advance along. This involves a mini-card-game of sorts that is quite fun. I've only done the first couple diplomacy-related quests, but am enjoying it so far. It does look to be a good change of pace and significantly different from adventuring or crafting.
The graphics are a mixed bag, with some awkward models and textures here and there, but also some gorgeous landscapes and city design. From what other beta players have told me, the world is absolutely enormous too. I've only explored a couple small areas so far, so can't directly vouch for that, but a large world is a big plus for people like me who love exploring.
Overall I think Vanguard looks very promising, and I'll be getting a copy when it's released on January 30th.