As the title suggests I haven't played HSL much yet, however I thought it might be nice to share my initial impressions of the game. Most of the reviews I have read have been quite negative, and most of the things the writers seem to dislike are the exact things that I've enjoyed so far.
I'm struggling to progress in the game, I've played about ten times so far and haven't been able to get passed the 2nd level, that's fantastic! I've unlocked the Knight and I'm not tempted to play as him, as I read the unlockable characters are a bit easier to progress with.
Having said that, I do think it is good that I'll be able to play as some stronger characters when I feel like a slightly less challenging run through.
I also really dig the random dungeon generator. Random monster placement, loot and level lay out gives this game huge replayability and of course it wouldn't really be a rogue-like without it. I especially enjoy the negative loot, the game would be quite monotonous if every time i found a potion i knew it was going to make me stronger. I felt a bit of glee when I went to check a statue expecting health/loot and it turned into a monster! that was a damn mean trick and exactly what i want to see in a rogue-like.
The actual fighting so far seems a bit basic, but I haven't really played it enough to see if it becomes addictive or boring, but so far the general mechanics of the game are exciting.
Anyway, I'm not going to go on too much until i play the game further, so i'll just say this, rogue likes are about the journey, not beating the game. I'm very glad it has been difficult and the RNG is great, because to me playing a rogue-like should always require a bit of luck and the game should be a bit mean. So thank you Dave for making a world of dungeons that doesn't hold the players hand, the only true rogue-like i've played since Dungeon Hack
If there are lots of spelling mistakes, i apologise, I'm really tired right now but i did try.