It's kinda funny how a lot of you aren't really considering the impact of dying/losing on your enjoyment of playing the game. I know that sounds like an odd thing to say when people are complaining about something this much, but one of the things you learn in game design is that often complaints highlight your most powerful design tools.
Out of the last month or so of logged games, 34.613% have ended through outright player death compared to 30.438% of runs ended with players retiring. That's over 10000 runs in which players died. That's way too high a number, surely! The game is broken!
Well, no, it isn't. 96% of those death runs are immediately followed by another run from the same account. Compare this to the 32% following runs when players retire and 65% following runs that win. That means that death actually engages players more than winning... Wait, what? How does that work?
Dying accomplishes two major things for players: Firstly, it acts as an emphasis point that there's something you need to learn here, something to pay attention to, to figure out - psychological crack, in other words. I can't tell you how many times we've watched brand new players click randomly around the game screen really fast, die, get shocked by that and start another run straight away, click randomly UP TO A POINT and then start paying attention as they notice that things are "kinda similar to when they died last time", that's when you know they're going to keep playing for 2 hours. Dying adds an inflection to the need to learn something, it's not co-incidence that new players tend to die more often.
Secondly, it removes doldrums in gameplay. Think about it, if death warnings were implemented, we'd basically have half as many retiring runs (given the frequency of win vs retire runs right now - actually a bias towards win given that more deaths happen in underpowered runs by their very nature), which would actually carry on quite a bit longer than the death runs (retire runs are over double the length of death runs on average) those "extra" minutes would either end in the success of a win or the slow wind-down of defeat. Those slow wind-downs are huge dampeners on enjoyment of the game, given the follow-on stats. AND winning is less compelling than dying, so both cases are "worse" for player engagement, especially when new players are just starting.
Even this argument is strongly coloured by the learned need to avoid death in DD: Every time one of you anti-death pros sees that "warning" popup, you'd be happy that you avoided death there, reinforced in a good decision by us devs. But every new player would take that completely differently: Having only ever rarely died in the game, they'd get annoyed by the popups and their gameplay engagement would never get the nitro boost of having overcome something hard the same way. Basically, death not only helps teach players to play the game through emphasis, but it also adds to the fiero of winning while removing long stretches of slow-dawning disempowerment.
That doesn't mean that there aren't things that we can do to change perceptions of death, I just wanted you to get a glimpse of what it is that we see when you talk about this. The selection mode is coming, we need it for touch gameplay anyway and it'll help alleviate some of your personal twitch problems (apparently) by moving spellcasting to single button pushes (no need to specify a target if you've already got one selected). Highlighting the current grid element that the cursor is in will also help, just like we had it in the Alpha, because it'll help differentiate for those edge cases when you're not sure exactly where you might be clicking (and haven't noticed the sidebar change) it can also encode other info in the colour of the selection box, so that's a thing too.
But yeah, death is a strong force for GOOD in DD, provably so in fact. While we want everyone to have the best experience possible with the game, some of you need to realise that the power of your reactions to DD come from the whole interaction of the game over time as you've been playing it. I could wish for a system that would up my resource mining rate in SC2 if I wasn't building enough Drones, I mean I'd obviously MEANT to build those harvesters, right? Or I could want a controller with 3 more buttons on it so that I could avoid the dexterity gate of having to move the joystick to do a dragon punch in Street Fighter. And yes, changing that stuff is all well and good, but it results in significantly different games that feel very different to play and thus attract different audiences...
Trust us, we know how changes like this mess with gameplay expectations - that's how DD came into existence after all.