Playing through Poe2 now. Currently level 17 on PotD difficulty. Honestly I think the game is hated so much because of a few things:
1. It has a terrible start. Basically you start by getting explained the weird intricacies of the setting, and then helping a bunch of natives and islanders with dumb names and dumber accents through some boring quests.
2. The setting. Black colonialism, pirates, natives! Sounds cool, but its actually pretty boring and the factions are so unlikeable. You neither feel like a true pirate or a true renaissance adventurer. Just a weird hero with a ship.
3. Ship combat is ass
4. Too much shit to do in Neketaka. Honestly made me drop the game when it came out. Not really so much to do, just so much to check on to do. Also the loading screens going between sections is ass
5. The loading. Same issue with PoE 1 except a little better.
6. The main quest and its lack of a good main villain. Eothas is a boring villain. Sure he has grand and interesting plans, but he's boring and unrelatable. The main quest is also super short and doesn't connect with side quests well at all.
Overall I'm still playing because I like the challenge on PotD, the combat is great, and finding new locations and items, but most everything else is forgettable.