Death penalty

There is currently no death penalty when playing softcore. I know some people think its fine that way and I often see the argument that if you want a death penalty you should play hardcore. I personally like when there is a penalizing death penalty but hardcore is a little to penalizing for my taste :). I suggest introducing a additional play mode (maybe call it hard) where the death penalty is severe e.g. you lose one level and all your gold. That way people not liking a death penalty can play it in normal, people (like me that want the extra challenge but also the possibility to recover from a death) can play in hard and the masochist han play in hardcore.

Apart from having to restart Arena from scratch & not getting the bonus reward in monolith.

Personally I believe that Masochist mode is for the masochists. Hardcore is for those that want to be punished more when they die.


Death penalty… you mean, punish the player who played? Punish someone who tried a new skill, a new build, a new way to play?
No, please. Thanks.


Dividing the player base is not a good thing and devs usually try to avoid it by all means.

To be honest I don’t understand your answer. I suggest adding an additional mode so that the players that enjoy the current state can keep playing it the way it is and players like me that want something in-between softcore and hardcore can play it in a way that makes them happy. If you don’t think the dev team should add a feature suggested here just don’t vote on it. I mean I am not suggesting a mechanic should be changed or removed I am suggesting an additional way to play the game?

In fact, this sums it up.
I’m totally against punishing the players who try something new, I’m totally OK with adding it as an option for those you like it, but I feel the devs are right: the player base must not be split if it’s avoidable.

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Breaking up the community because some players want every game to be Dark Souls is not a well-thought out suggestion. Players that want extra challenge and/or punishment for their failures have Masochist and Hardcore already, and the number of people that want to be punished on death as badly as you do is vanishingly small. It is absolutely not a good use of the devs’ time to even entertain your idea, let alone actually work on it.

Leaving a comment that says “I don’t like your suggestion and here is why” is a form of voting on it. All you’re saying with this sentence is “If you don’t agree with me, don’t say anything”. This is a public forum, and that sentiment is a non-starter.

I am also against splitting the player base. But I support a xp death penalty

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Currently both Monolith and Arena already have specific death penalties.
Both of these don’t actively take away things the player already had, but reduce your potential reward.

If we get more endgame modes all of them needs similar treatment and if they are kinda similar I think that already a really good thing, because I like those.

I am not a big fan of hardcore, but I still like an incentive to not play YOLO all the time.
Being a bit more mindful about difficulty and how far you push your current characters is something I enjoy.

However, I know that the devs talked about wanting to add a exp death penalty at some point (not sure if that is still the plan), which I think is a really good global, game mode independant penalty, if it’s balanced In a way, that it does not gatekeep more casual player or poorly skilled player.

I am talking about a very soft or non existent penalty from lvl 1 - ~75/80.
Then it starts to kick in a little bit more at lvl 80-90 and the last 5-10 levles should be really punishing.

This way achieving a high level on a character gives you a really good feeling, because it is something that is not “guaranteed”, by just grinding.
It also gives those last few passive points and max HP/Mana a lot more meaning and weight, if you can achieve them.

I really like that, that simply is not achieveable by pure playhours spend. Regardless fo how long it takes to reach lvl 100, it does not feel special enough, if it’s something literally everybody can achieve, with enough time.

But it will also not be mandatory, there is no build that currently needs lvl 80-90+.
With the exception of some of the new Uniques being lvl 80+, but those are just a few of the already really high end ones, which also makes them a lot more special.


This is yet another “Different strokes for different folks” thing, I guess. For me, personally, the “special” feeling comes from achieving more than I was previously able to. How many other people can do it does not factor into the equation.

I like where EHG has landed on this question right now. I’ve never been a fan of character regression on death. Slow progression? I’m all for it. Actively regress the character? While not a deal breaker for me, I simply don’t like it. This is especially true for an always online game. While internet connectivity has come leaps and bounds over the past couple of decades, it is simply a fact that factors 100% outside the players control can lead to death in an online game, even in a first world setting.

If EHG want max level to be something more difficult to reach, then I think game difficulty tweaking is the way to go, rather than taking something away from the player that was already earned. Whether that be through scaling enemy density, damage, health, resilience, steeper XP curve in later levels, introduction of more challenging mechanics at high levels, or any combination of the above I leave for them to decide.

In the end, I think there are ways to gate max level that are in keeping with the idea of decreasing future reward as opposed to reaching into my pocket and taking something I previously worked for.


Forcing me to play trivial content to level up does not give me a good feeling. Making hitting max level an annoying chore does not improve the game.

LE already incentivises staying alive there is no reason to add an archaic mechanic that can only make the game less fun to play.


Yeah, I agree, I get bored with most builds some time in the 70s-80s well before hitting empowered monos.

Regarding any penalty which removes something you already gained (like XP penalty):

Think of a video game like this:

  • You play video game for (x time)
  • Video game removes (Y time) from the time you’ve played.
  • You play video game for (Y time) to recover what video game took from you
  • Repeat in a loop

Conclusion: taking anything away has no real meaning or benefit to the video game/company.

There is a false narrative that it “increases retention” (because, literally, you have to play longer), but that’s actually never proven by the data. Players “accept” the level cap of (whatever level they get to where Y=X in the above example, i.e. XP stagnation), and then just feel there are things they can’t ever get in the game (i.e. they got all they’re going to get) and then quit and move on early.

If you extend what players “can” get, then that will actually increase retention. In other words, don’t code in the removal of (anything-XP, gear, gold, etc.). Code the extension of goals (like how Mono’s work today). Its actually a great design that EHG is putting in.


Leaving a comment that says “I don’t like your suggestion and here is why” is a form of voting on it. All you’re saying with this sentence is “If you don’t agree with me, don’t say anything”. This is a public forum, and that sentiment is a non-starter.

My suggestion was introducing a new game mode. The response I got from @Shtrak was basically liking a death penalty is stupid (exaggerating a little for the sake of argument). No where in his answer did he present an argument against an additional game mode. And that was what I was responding to. @Shtrak then clarified it in his second response (kudos to Shtrak) that he thought dividing the community might be an issue. Even though I don’t think its a big issue (considering it is already divided with Hardcore mode) his concerns are totally valid and it was that kind of discussion I was hoping for, arguing for and against my suggestion that is.

Players that want extra challenge and/or punishment for their failures have Masochist and Hardcore already, and the number of people that want to be punished on death as badly as you do is vanishingly small.

I never felt the number of players in Hardcore mode being particularly low neither in PoE nor in D3. It was some time ago I did play those games but I doubt the that has changed. Considering this I don’t believe your claim that the number of people wanting to be punished on death is vanishingly small.

It is absolutely not a good use of the devs’ time to even entertain your idea, let alone actually work on it.

Understandable since I get the feeling you don’t like death penalties in these kind of games :). It is of course very hard to tell without any knowledge of the code base but I doubt adding the mode I suggested being super time consuming (e.g. as time consuming as adding a second gender to all classes).

As a Scrum Master, I will say this about your last sentence.

There is a phrase: “Death by a thousand cuts.” It applies to software development.

If you spend any time on trivial or worthless features, even a tiny bit of time, and you get into the habit of doing that, you’ll lose out on many amazing, worthwhile features you could have been working on instead. This is a fact. I live this reality every single day in my job. I won’t bore you with metrics (because no one likes metrics) but it is astounding how much more productive a Dev team is when you eliminate the ‘tiny’, ‘easy’ enhancements and focus only on the big features.

Nuff said.

“Presenting an argument” against an idea is not a requirement for expressing a dislike of it. This isn’t high school debate club. If all @Shtrak wanted to say was that he thinks your idea is stupid, that is just an impolite way of saying that they don’t think the dev team should add the feature, and you don’t get to try to gatekeep people from disagreeing with you by saying “If you don’t like it just don’t vote on it”.

Your feeling is wrong. It is known that Hardcore players are the minority, and by miles. It’s a niche gameplay mode with niche appeal and it always has been.

This is where your sentence should have stopped. You have no knowledge of the code base. Any opinion you form on the difficulty of adding a given feature has no basis and therefore no worth. I do not fall into this trap because it is my position that any amount of time, period, spent on a feature that gives players as big a middle finger when they die as you want to is wasteful when Hardcore and Masochist already exist.

The experience curve in Last Epoch now seems to be gradual.
But In this kind of games usually require a large amount of experience at level 90~95+.

I think death penalty is one of the reasons why soft-core players get bored and lose motivation, because they lose all the experience they’ve accumulated over several days of playing 1-2 hours a day with just one death.
(Avid players won’t care about that.)
On the other hand, avoiding such deaths by updating your gears and techniques is also one of the most enjoyable aspects of this kind of game.

However, just like the Level, gears cannot be updated so easily in the latter half of the game. In other words, we can’t get gears easily that are stronger than the current ones.

At lV 90~95+, the level will up a long period of time (even more so receiving death penalty).
In spite of this, we will only receive one skill point.
Whether this is worth the reward for the time spent.

Personally, I think it’s better to have a death penalty (without newly splitting play-mode.) I think the high level band should be an area that we can’t reach unless we keep our concentration and play, even if the character made in softcore-mode.

However, in the first place I think there should be some kind of additional fascinating reward for leveling up at the higher levels band, because it takes too many time.
That makes us we want to level up more even if we receive penalty sometimes.

For example, 1 time key access exalted gear vaults, or receive +2 passive skill points at level 97, 100, or can access hidden paths or nodes on active skills, something.
Just my two cents.

I think that LE sets itself in a fine spot without a death penalty.

There is currently quite a few ways to “push” your character, and to perfect it. level 100 isnt one of those, and thats perfectly fine. There is no level ladder, so it makes perfect sense that its not really an achievement, thats what arena is for. Corruption also serves as a way to test and push your characters limits.

I have a nearly level 100 in LE that I simply didnt take to 100 because I got bored and hit my limit in arena. Adding a death penalty would have not drastically hurt my climb to 100, but it would have 100% made me annoyed. When I die in LE I still go “wow that sucked, I messed up” I have lost out on some exalted and set piece nodes I was farming because I got careless and died.

I think that is more then enough penalty. I actually just close Path of exile for example when I die in that game because I just lost 6 hours of progress because I have had a few beers enjoying my gaming time.

Progression to level cap should feel like a fun journey not a annoying slog of trying to play frame perfect to prevent losing hours of progress.

The devs have expressed wanting to make hitting level cap harder, and I think the proper way to do that is to just curve the exp. Id much rather spend an extra 10 days getting to level cap, then being hard stuck at level 97 because of an experience penalty on death.

Right now it is good as it is. It qould absolutely hate a death penalty as it qould discourage me from playing, why would you punish a Player for dying. So stupid. Was jy far the worst thing in POE.


I can totally give you a metric that 100% disproves that… Show me the money numbers (and the money)!!