Longtime ARPG player (thousands of hours, perhaps tens of thousands in D1-3, Grim Dawn, and PoE0, picked up LE a few weeks ago to give it a try. Currently lvl 73 w/34 hrs playtime as a Spellblade.
I’m posting this for two reasons: 1 - new player feedback to the devs. I’m sure long-time LE players have some great ideas, I just want to share my initial response to the game. 2 - solicit feedback from the community on where I’m wrong and how I should have known that! I also know that 0.7.9 has planned changes that I am not taking into account.
TL DR: solid potential, needs focus on information availability and a better end-game vision…
I’m grading each area out of 10 and based off of previous ARPG experience and/or expectations.
Overall 7/10. Absolutely worth my $$, however I don’t feel the desire to play just ‘one more hour’ like I did with D3 or PoE. Hopefully planned content/QoL will bring this up.
Graphics 5/10. A weaker point in the game, but nothing that will stop me from playing it. No recommendations.
Monsters: 7/10. Solid implementation of various monsters w/various abilities. Room for improvement with respect to possible synergistic effects of different monsters interacting together.
Combat/skills: 9/10. Very solid. Only initial gripe is that the screen gets so busy with animations that the ground effect aoes/sprays are lost and my hp goes down like you wouldn’t believe. After some familiarity with the mobs, you learn which ones do what, but it’s a learning curve. Otherwise, hack and slash is solid. Good skill design, good implementation of skill levelling.
Loot/items: 7/10. Nothing really wrong here, but a bit underwhelming - I would expect more variance in items, including more class specific, but even in current implementation, it’s adequate. Not sure how much gear really matters in progressing though (see feedback on crafting).
Information 1/10. My biggest gripe right now… where to find info on the game, items, mobs, etc. I can’t find it anywhere, and the gamepedia wiki is not accurate. One example is at what level do T5 affixes drop? Apparently it’s 81 and I only know that because the 0.7.9 patch notes mention it. I would have guessed 74 based on the 14*6-10 formula, but that was apparently wrong. I initially went ranged mage, then swapped to mana strike (without reading a build guide) - how much damage does Volanic Orb do. I would love to know, but I can’t find it. What is the added damage effectiveness modifier of various skills. Apparently there is one, but again, where? I’m the kind of player who built a build forecaster in Excel for D3 and PoE so I could determine the exact affect a +1% attack speed buff would have vs. +1 flat dmg vs 1% added dmg vs. dmg conversion, etc, etc., etc. I want to do the same here so I can adequately plan my character as I develop it, but other than the generic damage formula, I can’t find anything. Not to mention the fact that I do different amounts of damage every time I hit, but I don’t see a damage range on any item . . . is the damage inflicted a +/- from the ‘expected’ damage based on a formula? Same type of questions with respect to gearing. Gamepedia has a gear section, but the values don’t match what’s currently in-game. 100% understandable from a Beta perspective, but hopefully something that will be looked at prior to launch. I keep dying with positive ward and a yellow health pool. I have no idea what this means. With 35 hours of gameplay; that’s a problem. ‘Last Epoch yellow health pool’ google serch yields no informative results. You have what looks to be a very good game on your hands and your legion of Alpha/Beta supporters have helped you get it this far, but to appeal to a wider launch-audience, I feel you’ll need to provide a means of information dissemination. You could even take that 1 step farther and actually put in a tutorial that explains ‘stuff’ like what mob affixes are and where to look up what they mean.
Crafting 5/10. After 35 hrs of gameplay, I finally crafted my first piece. For my final build, I knew that I wanted/needed set Glancing Blow and Intelligence (both prefixes; your crafting interface is 10/10 btw) on a decent base item. I finally had a drop T4/T3 with armour/health at T2/3, and crafted that up to T5/T5 with double T4 on the armour/health. Not a bad starting end game piece (correct me if I’m wrong!) but with the scarcity of crafting resources, it seemed like a waste to start crafting anything worthwhile before T5s were eligible to drop. I’ve also been progressing rather handily (I think) post-story content, pushing 16 levels into MoF and arena wave ~70 with absolute crap mismatched lvl 15 gear. So it doesn’t appear that I need to focus on gearing to do endgame content, which is a bit weird.
QoL improvement recommendations.
- Buff icons needed. I cast Enchanted Weapon on myself, but have no idea when it falls off. The spinning blue ball of fire is very quickly lost in the melee fracas and two giant turtles obscuring my vision.
- Need a button to remove map/stash/vendor pop-up screens. The map screen comes up when you cross over a waypoint, even without clicking on it. That’s a problem when you’re in the middle of a fight. It would be nice to close the vendor or stash tab as well with a quick ‘space bar’
- Multiple times, my character has been blocked by near terrain - that’s a huge deal if I can’t see my toon.
- Need to be able to click to remove mastery points all at once and then confirm afterwards. Confirming every click was a pain.
- I’m sure others have commented, but starting back at 0 skill progression when you wanted to test out new skills felt wrong. You already make an incontrovertible decision on your mastery tree, and levelling a skill to 20 takes a very short time if you’re at end game, why not let players retain skill levels they have attained so they can then play around with builds more easily?
End-game content: 5/10. I’m lvl 73, doing the two end-game modes, just waiting to hit 81 so T5 can drop and then I can craft whichever of set GB/INT I need onto it. Kinda meh… Is there any way to start at wave 50 once you’ve cleared it? Or 100? Or is one forced to start at wave 1 every time and slog to 1000 once you’re good enough? I understand the devs have plans for end-game, so I won’t go into much detail, other than to say that the current state of game won’t hold my end game attention for long. Bottom line, current end game is starting to feel like a slog vs. a challenge.
Overall, a solid game with really really good potential, but I’m concerned about translating that ‘potential’ into reality with a Q4 '20 launch target.
As I said at the beginning, I’m probably dead wrong with half of what I wrote. But if I’m wrong, others will be too! Let me know how messed up I am, thanks!