The "Head Start" let me get in the game a couple days before the boxes were on the shelf. This was kinda nice. I figured that since I had pre-ordered, I could wait for the box to show up, put the key into the accounting system and keep playing. I didn't realize that a day or so after the grand opening, I would find myself locked out and waiting for my retail box to show up in the mail. I guess that if I had known that in advance, I might have made some different decisions.
Overall, regardless of the quality of the game itself, the entire pre-order, beta, head start deal was a difficult to understand system. I ended up, by pre-ordered, with four keys and no real idea when and where to use them. Most of the times and dates for events to start or end were unknown and unpublished on Mythic's web site. Would it have been so hard to have a calendar with start and stop dates for these events? Or was the game being shoved out the door too fast?