Vanguard has beautiful landscapes, for sure.
Are they a little empty at times? Yes. But there is enough to explore that you find plenty to do on any of the three land-masses. Ruins, wandering monsters, little caves poked in the side of hills here and there. I have walked/rode/sailed pretty much over all the landscapes, even within some areas that I had no business going into (thankfully I don't do perma-death anymore.)
And as I move along, I still can't decide which land I like best, which land makes me feel at home the best.
I enjoy Thestra for it's trees, and the fact that it feels the closest to something I am familiar with, and so feels a little more "modern", if that makes sense. I have seen lands that look like Thestra in real life, in the forests of Virginia or the mountains of Tennessee. I like the snow-covered area the best, and especially enjoy the area of the giants. I spent many levels there, and many days of just running around looking at the massive columns and architecture.
But then, there is the place I was born: Kojan. Now, let's be honest. All that Asian architecture and kung-fu grip stuff is NOT my bag, baby. At first I thought "Oh my God, they are going to make me go play around with elves and wanna-be Bruce Lee NPC's!" But, I gave it a while. I let it soak in. Not only is Kojan probably the most diverse area, but all of that variety comes in the smallest package.
I went from Elf cities to great mountains to beautiful magical floating towns. It's all there, and let's you get a real feeling for the HEIGHT of Vanguard, more than the SIZE. I love the area now, and after playing my Goblin monk (especially in her wicked starting quests) I really enjoy the whole "kung-fu" vibe. It's nice to see something different in a MMO, and it really does make you feel as though your character is growing very powerful as you level.
Kojan is perfect for exploring on a flying mount, something I rarely did with Rikoo. Not only was he afraid of heights, but I didn't allow myself to use flying mounts during "Immersion" play. I flew around like a kite on my goblin, and loved what I saw:
Qalia is the "desert" land-mass. Like all the land masses, you have to spend some time in it to really get a feel of what the developers were going for. Everything seems connected together: you go from the starting area down a GIANT hill to Khal, the major city in the land. ( I remember seeing Khal for the first time, from the edge of the newbie starting city, and was blown away at how it looked. ) Then you move on from there to QA Riverbank, and on from there. Even if you do not follow quest-lines that send you to certain areas, the flow of the lands is enough to always guarantee that you will find something cool.
So, I cannot decide. I am bad at decisions, anyway, but especially when around the corner is something else shiny.
A few gripes, though:
1) Passing through invisible server lines is STILL an issue. They are aware of it, but I know that it is just not high on the priority list. On a boat, it is even more annoying.
2) All the land masses are linked together only using giant teleport gates. Technically, Vanguard is NOT seamless, it's just that the 3 major zones are GIANT.
3) The public ferry system is still broken. It has been talked about in so many ways and so many times, that I am still not clear on if they have been fixed or not. I know for a fact that the question of the ferries has been answered (Hell, answered on my show probably) but my memory is short. Either way, I want them back. New players or players that play like me would LOVE to have those boats back. Traveling by boat is one of the biggest joys of the game.
I am leaning towards Thestra, but then I travel to the other lands and fall in live with them all over again.
Honestly, though, that's not a bad position to be in.