I try and give games a lot of chances to catch my attention. I did not like really anything about the game when I first tried it about a year ago. Recently, someone told me a lot of things had changed, so I came back and tried it again.
I judge on gameplay, story and ambience. And yes, I have played games just because the ambience was so good. Beautiful scenes and music can make for a very enjoyable time. Story can be like reading a book and hold my attention for a long time. ARPGs, none have managed those two, I almost always play them for their gameplay.
Last Epoch (LE) has horrible gameplay in my opinion.
At the control level, LE has controls that were used in D2 almost two DECADES ago. Melee skills activate where you are standing and do not move you unless you target exactly on a mob. This is one place D3 humiliates every ARPG out there. Melee skills on the right mouse button work amazingly well. And this isnt laziness here, I know quite a few people who started play Diablo when they were younger and now have arthritis, or in my case easily dislocated joints. D3’s setup there saves you pain on both. Oh, and left mouse button can be used for skills. That one is nice.
The biggest gripe I have is the skill leveling. It is easily the part that most interests me. But leveling a skill is pretty useless while leveling you character. People can tell me about avoiding skill swapping all they want, but frustration does not equal difficulty. The problem is when you want to test new skills. However, you lose all progress with another skill when you do that. That prevents normal testing for fun. It will lead to very few fun builds and only what someone tells you is good. Aka, there will be only one of two builds played per class. Yes, class, not mastery. Most people will not want to level a new character to be able to play a build that removes most, if not all, the skill leveling they have done.
Yeah, that sounds really negative, but keep in mind, almost all games have a “single way” mindset.
I expect to get lambasted here. I know the devs have said what they are going to do, but eh, it is my opinion here. Having to level and do the story over and over to try something different is a way to push some people away.