I agree. It's made me more engaged as I was about to leave. That said, I also get the complaints about it being a little too "grief oriented" even if it is really a problem only for the top. And I can also see how the RNG can be super frustrating (though I'm happy taking the good with the bad).
To be honest, I think a lot of these changes won't fundamentally change things. It seems to me people are really asking for a system that doesn't encourage griefing and to improve the AI/RNG so it works more in the players favor.
I'm honestly not sure how to fix the griefing issue but I don't think having the dev team pick the defenses is a good solution. Honestly, it seems like Mana Drain, Devour, and Empowered True Dmg are the problems.