Many new players pick up the game and put it down well before the 20 or 100 hour mark, which is by my estimations, the unlock point for a single or all heroes being max level for a competent player. 20 hours investment learning bad habits and poor decision making. So after all the time spent learning a hero a new player has to unlearn almost everything they knew.
The obfuscation of enemy attacks due to intentional lack of data provided by developers means the only way to get good at a difficulty is to die repeatedly trying.
Obfuscation of enemy HP. The lack of a true dummy mode to get an idea for enemy health prevents new players from knowing if their weapon hits a break point. A creature spawner would be awesome.
The lack of a training mode for learning to dodge hookrats, leeches, etc. Game ending runs to try to learn to dodge is unfun.
The lack of a tutorial that goes beyond the most barebones of controls. (It doesn’t teach push attacks for crying out loud)
Each Difficultly has a meta, and each is entirely dissimilar to the rest. By learning one difficulty you do not gain any skills that transfer over to the next.
Power level. What can I say besides it serves zero positive purpose? Players will not be able to learn their hero’s strengths and weaknesses until they hit the cap. Until that time they are playing on a neutered hero. Less cleave, less damage dealt, more damage taken, etc. During the entirety of the leveling process a person is learning the wrong attack patterns. Nothing a player learns from 0-649 translates properly to gameplay at 650.
Talents. Almost exactly the same complaint as above. Certain talents that make a higher level talent better causes low level players to experiment and write off said certain talents. Almost the entirety of the talent process from 1-29 is useless because is causes players to experience builds in isolation to having the total talent tree.
Properties. They serve zero purpose to a leveling player. Damage, stagger, and cleave all increase with level and their resistance scales with difficulty. Additionally cost of rolling punishes newer players who have less dust to spend. The one that stays static, 5% move speed is the only one that can make a difference regardless of difficulty. But new players cannot take advantage of movespeed without playing the game a ton.
Traits. One thing that finally makes sense. A static boost that doesn’t change by difficulty or level. The one thing in the entire game a player can count on to change the way they play. Unlikely to drop before champion difficulty.
Max power items, veteran aka reds. New players need not apply as there is an intentional cap on reds not dropping before level 30. They can earn the chests, just have to wait to open them, otherwise no reward.
Perfect roll oranges. New players need not apply. High dust requirement and an unconfirmed cap on % until level 30.
To sum up the system: a level 12 hero jumping into legend with max item power but random and useless properties has a harder time mathematically killing a single enemy than a player on the MODDED DIFFICULTY of DEATHWISH. This is just the math and ignores talents beyond the stagger talent. Specifically Merc with spear on legend 420 vs Deathwish 650, smiter, 40% fighting one marauder using lights.
TL;DR this game could use a creature spawner, 10x or more the exp gain, removal of green/blue/orange items so only whites and reds drop, free rolls, and a real tutorial to help new players.