You say that GW 1 = skills, but did you not see PVP and PVE after the second year of the game coming out? Everyone was using the same wiki build and the same 8 skills on their class anyway. So it really was mashing either way! I have seen no difference between the two!
after the second year of the game coming out.... seems unfair to say the game didn't work if it only failed after two years.
i played in the first year, and guildwars required more brain function and strategy than any other action game i've ever played. even high level starcraft turns out to be a cookie cutter routine, being a test of focus and control rather than strategy.
guildwars was the only game where after you were beaten by a team, you would actually analyse their build and carefully adjust your own build/setup to counter their build.
for a while my guild ("The Wrong Guild") was pretty successful in the hall of heroes, but eventually we broke up because it felt like the skills and powerful builds in the game were being constantly nerfed and 'dumbed down' too early, without giving sufficient time for people to make counter builds (most of our success came from being innovative and countering the flavour of the month builds).
every 'balance' patch would cause something else to become OP, therefore a lot of the competitive players left.... it's a waste of time to play a game when the 'strategy' is trumped by dev hotfix every couple of weeks.
anyway, my point = don't even compare GW and GW2. totally different games... i'm looking forward to playing GW2, but still angry that it's called GW2 when the only similarity is that the game is set in the world of tyria and made by the same dev team... talk about misleading.