Yes, apart funny things, reading many of the post i get that it's true: a lot of things that made the game more "impressive" and "deep" was removed.
Death penalty was really something to pay attention. Wipes were things to be avoided. one or two death in dungeons could make a big effort being wasted.
There was nothing else than resurrection shrines or the help of party members that could raise you. I remember the many runs with one or more soul stones to the res shrine to get the dead alive again.
The party was a real team (also in PUGs). Everyone respected each other because any other could save you ass.
Today you have so many things that self-sufficiency has become true selfishness. And all the social aspect is affected by it.
The game is totally changed. And i miss the real team work due to the real challenge of the game.
That Challenge today is lost. This game has become a simple grinding machine where everyone need other people only to increase DPS.