I just don't understand how people can keep playing this game for hundreds of hours. I grew sick of it about 80% through Merciless. I mean, no matter how much you spruce things up with random stuff or awkward rules, it's still the same mindless slaughter of tens of thousands of mobs.
What keeps you guys going?
PS: I absolutely DESPISE the -Elemental resistance penalty these types of games put on you for getting to higher difficulties. That's just artificial difficulty bullshit right there. Kind of like adding 300% HP to enemies. The solution to more difficulty is not making things more spongy or hit harder...
Hm, I suppose what does it is the OTHER stuff about it. The issue with the game as a whole... and I suppose with the entire genre... is that it can have all of these really interesting and intricate complexities to it; in this case things like the currency/crafting system, the skill tree, the gems, the whole "mapping" and Atlas thing... all stuff like that. The bits that are the central depth and pull of the game. But... it then seperates a lot of that from the combat. Clobbering basic mobs isn't very interesting, which is the entire problem. And even quite a number of fans of the game, like, long-time fans, think so too. A lot of people don't like what's called the "Clear-speed meta", as I've heard it put. The thing about the combat though is that it doesn't HAVE to be that way. When it is good... it's really good. Dealing with actually dangerous mobs (usually elites of some sort) gets interesting fast (a lot of this happening in the mapping bits). Bosses are well done. But that only happens every now and then. Too much time is spent just splattering trash mobs.
Granted, as some others in the game's community put it, some of the difficulty of the game is up to the player; if they're just going for the super duper meta build, it's going to be all clear-speed and not very exciting; trying out your own builds is where it gets interesting (which is what I'm doing). Provided of course that your builds get you somewhere. That does keep things more interesting. That idea makes me think of something like Isaac (or many games where there are characters to choose from that are of genuinely different power tiers)... if you want any challenge at all in THAT game, you DONT pick Azazel. The option is there, and it's the best option for those that want to wreck things quick and easy... but it's also the most boring because he's an OP mess.
Of course that doesn't actually stop that fundamental genre problem of "too many trash mobs".
I, personally, get by it due to the fact that I've gotten really, really used to repetition in games at this point. All the shmups and roguelikes, I will do the same damn things over and over and over, on the way to the bits that currently put up a fight. Many genres are like that, too. Hell, you've got the entire JRPG genre, where combat is usually very easy and very shallow yet is MOST of the actual gameplay, and that genre somehow squeaks by. I dunno. I guess you get used to the sheer repetition after awhile, with some things. Though, it's the complexity of the game mechanics (as in, everything BUT that part) that keep me invested in something like this. If I want an *immediate* challenge I'll go elsewhere.
But yeah, one way or another even a lot of those that like the game or the genre (as I've heard this for ALL of them) there's definitely too much "busywork" in there. It's like those random battles in a JRPG... it's an outdated concept that never entirely went away. I mean, I get that part of the appeal for a game like this is that you get to see your character become stupidly powerful... clobbering entire screens of mobs with one blow can be satisfying that way, knowing that your build brought you to that point. That's part of it for some people. But I do think there are ways they could keep the combat CONSTANTLY interesting while never actually removing that feel of "hey my character is really powerful here". Even the devs at GGG though, the ones behind this game, have said that while they're definitely aware of the issue, they aren't sure yet as to how to deal with it. Cant blame them, if they make the wrong moves in trying to fix it the fanbase will flip out.
As for the bit about resistance.... eh, I don't mind that part. What I DO mind is what does end up happening in the late-game due to general screwiness; sure, combat will get interesting sometimes. BUT, you will also run into mobs that are WAY too freaking dangerous and can kill you in one or two hits. So that's a problem. There's ways to deal with it apparently, but it's sure as heck not an ideal setup for enjoyable gameplay. It's not like the devs cant come up with enemies that use interesting attacks/patterns... but this happens anyway, at least for now.