I doubt if anyone is reading this thread at this point because usually by about the 20th post on Blues News, the flame wars begin and it all just turns into a pit of vipers - but I love the sound of my own voice, so here goes.
I've played SWG on and off since beta. It's a game I want desperately to like but it's nearly impossible for me for most of the same reasons it is for everyone else - it's dull, blah, blah, blab, etc.
I'm currently playing City of Heroes and having a great time.
I believe that the lesson other developers should learn from these two games is this: focus on a few key systems and forget the rest. Forget the economy, forget crafting, forget advanced chat systems, forget it all and just get the basic combat, grouping and questing systems right.
The MMORPG genre continues to trade on it's "potential." You can say it for the genre as a whole and for the individual games - once they get the technology fixed the genre/insert MMORPG of your choice will be amazing. As fans, we continuously give the developers the benefit of the doubt. We're willing to play through a buggy mess for months at a time based on "potential" alone.
So what seems obvious to me now is, when launching a new title, don't pull a SWG and try to include every feature under the sun, none of which will work because your development team is spread so thin they'll never get it to work. Instead follow the lead of CoH and just get the basics right. Make combat fun, make it easy to get a group and make it simple and fast to find content appropriate for the group's level. We, the players will wait for the rest, just like we wait for you to fix all the bugs and endure dull game play while you get the balance right. Reward us rather then punish us for giving you our $15 every month.