As for character creation, I rolled as a lady Roegadyn, and I've affirmed my decision to change Cat Who over to one permanently for the full version of the game. (What was that Sea Wolf name I came up with.... Ornlona something or other?) Some of the skin tones are really weird, but for the Sea Wolf I came up with, the pale green made me feel like sea creature, all right. I like that they kept the hair highlight options for 1.0 and the starter gear is vastly improved in appearance (no more burlap sacks!)
I think I'm going with a female rog as well. Very elegant characters. Everyone was so worried they would be too masculine or whatever but SE knocked this one out of the park.
The only thing I didn't like about the character creation was the sequence of options. I expected sex and race to be the immediate first options, but I had to go through a few unrelated questions looking at the default male before I got there. For a moment I thought perhaps only male characters were unlocked in the beta. It's a small thing to be sure and not something to get worked up over, but it was something I noticed right away.
The town was pretty average for an mmo. The size felt good, and the map is 999999999999999% better than the unreadable parchment we had before. This map actually makes sense and helps you navigate. It's nice to be able to look around you at the city and then look at the map for the city and be able to say, "ah, that's where I go next".