Please do away with artificial grind. So many decent worlds, ruined...
Leveling is fine, but it being a treadmill isn't. Time-sink activities take the game out of the game. It too creates discord between the two worlds and encourages addiction.
There are other ways too hook people.
One of the points of having a world and not just a simple game is that you can choose your own goals.
Provide, don't prod. Let me play in your world the games I want to.
Show me an open world, not a closed one.
I might like certain repetitive activities if I'm not coerced into them.
Perhaps beating other players or having sunk most time into the game is not what I wish to excel at. Show me alternatives!
What I wish to see is organic grind based on social structure.
People want recognition (or at least the possibility of recognition). There's one thing that is very valuable and you can give away freely: fame.
Make polls, ladders, popularity contests (or give the players the ability to construct them themselves). Skillfullness, graciousness, richness, evilness, politeness, inventiveness, fashion sense, leadership etc.
In a world of heroes, how can we differentiate?
The need for recognition is so strong, and it seems so easy to fulfill in a dynamic and empowering way.
In fact, I'm simply amazed there hasn't been much, much more progress in the field of organic grind.
Which world will be the first to strike gold?