My copy just arrived and I've been playing it a bit.
Some very basic first impressions:
The atmosphere is beautiful. I don't usually comment on atmosphere in Atelier games, but it's really noteworthy here.
I'm not sure how the lore will play out (the Arland series simply gave you "machines" and told you to live with it, while some of the older games were more developed), but it seems on the "more developed" side right from the start, giving you a background on the town you're in and the "land" of Dusk.
From a graphical perspective, it's a mixed bag. Obviously the models are beautiful and well detailed, and the animations are smooth, but the backgrounds still need some work. They're better looking than Rorona's, but they still feel low budget.
As stated above, it's not super sweet and sugary and takes a tone more similar to the older games. This is very refreshing.
I think Ayesha as a main character has the best English voice of the female main characters, but really now. She's 17. Does every 17 year-old girl you know have a high pitched voice like someone 5 years her junior? Actually, even my 12 year-old cousin has a deeper voice than she does (but she also has a deeper voice than I do, so I suppose that's not saying much).
I don't think I need to mention the music beyond "it's good." It's GUST.