Regarding the weak early armor - so I noticed in this every play through. And yes, it can be frustrating ... but as others have pointed out - you ARE a gang of prisoners lol. I mean, all things being equal, the magisters should be better equipped. And I feel that once you escape the initial fort (sorry if that's a spoiler), you immediately start making up that discrepancy. So I'm not saying you're wrong! I'm only saying it adds to a degree of the immersion. It's you and your tactical genius vs their better equipped and prepared force.

Is it naive to think there's no way they're not going to fix the electric/poison thing? I didn't even mention it because it was SO over the top that I thought "oh no way, that's obviously an accident." Like my 3rd play through I had an inquisitor type - and any time he had a fire/poison/air staff, he'd CONSTANTLY set himself on fire/poison himself/stun himself. His own self! I had to find a water staff and hang on for dear life! (fun fact, almost everyone seems to have water resist - or at least it felt that way). But otherwise, I completely agree. I think the terrain and effect combos are a trademark of DOS, but please, don't make them PUNISHING to us!

I'm on the fence about memory. Early on, 1 point in strength doesn't even affect your damage. Meanwhile 1 point in memory means an entirely new cooldown ability to use. It's quite powerful.

Later on though, it becomes such a stat tax. But from a balancing standpoint, I don't see an easy alternative. Too many abilities, all of which scale smartly off your loadout (bravo Larian, you nailed that well), you can easily become 4 homogeneous units of destruction with no clear definition of "what" you are from an RPG perspective (I'm a sword/shield summoner who combos fire and earth for lots of damage thanks to his aerothurge skill! Also I heal/buff/polymorph. Oh you too!? Neat!).

I recently reloaded DOS:EE to play with a friend and I 100% agree with the better flow in DOS2. I just kept thinking "wow, my turns' over already!?" In DOS2, you always feel like you get to do so much with each turn, even if it's a lot of little stuff. The combat is way streamlined and flow-ey.