You couldn't be more wrong and its the same line of thinking when people think diablo should be an MMO. If I want to play a game with a shared world I can play destiny 1+2 and division, if I want a game with a world like borderlands I can play borderlands.
Grimoire: Heralds of the Winged Exemplar was in development for more than 20 years and detractors said that the game would never launch. Today the game launched on steam proving all those detractors wrong. The game still has some minor issues like double-clicking on character portrait will crash the game but that's just haters being haters that can't handle launch issues.
Just give them enough time and I'm sure that Chronicles of Elyria will launch as well. Not like it will help since haters will complain about launch issues that will be fixed if we just give them even more time.
Its much easier to get a growing userbase in an emergent and growing market compared to a mature market since in an growing market you can grow without taking people from your competitors. That was the sort of market everyone played on before 2004 and its never going to return on the western PC market.
WoW expanded the market and as long as they could find new markets to sell the game on the playerbase kept growing, there was an explosion in the playerbase once they launched the game in china. When they couldn't find new markets to sell their game on it stopped growing.
Pantheon, crowfall and camelot unchained aims for a segment of players. When you can't compete with the giants, aim for the crowds they don't satisfy.
The problem is that if you go for an extremely specific crowd it might not be enough to keep the game afloat. While there is a crowd of people that enjoy group content and also a crowd that enjoy old school mechanism, going for the crowd of old school players that want it to mostly be like everquest during a specific era isn't that big.