In it they promise a new way of looking at the system but honestly I don't see anything new in there that we haven't seen before. ARMA II for example has a state like this and some other games like Star Trek have a "defeated state" as well. At least Guild Wars 2 is thinking outside the normal route of "death then corpse" run which is fine with me.
"Rather than being presented with immediate failure, when a player loses all of their health in Guild Wars 2, they are put into "downed mode." In this mode, the player has a number of downed skills they can use to target enemies and fight for a chance to survive. A downed player can still be attacked, which will send them into a defeated state, leaving them to either wait for an ally to resurrect them or to resurrect at a waypoint."
I imagine this system can lead to a pretty cool heroic moment if given a chance.
Downed skills are less-powerful skills that a player can use in a last-ditch effort to turn the tide. A warrior might daze an enemy by throwing a rock. An elementalist might lock down their foe with Grasping Earth. While you are downed, if you manage to kill an enemy, you will rally,