I don't play rogue-likes.
That was my starting point with ToME(4), aka Tales of Maj'Eyal. I'm not really a fan of the genre, though I am a fan of tactical RPGs. It was only after some interesting comments on another game forum (Grim Dawn, great game, look it up) that I decided to give ToME a try.
Unlike some other rogue-likes, ToME gives you the option to play softcore. There are varying difficulty levels in addition to different degrees of 'rogue-like-ness' (multiple lives; from 1 to infinite). The classes vary from basic and simple (Bulwark, Rogue, Archmage, etc) to surprisingly unique (Mindslayer, Oozemancer, Solipsist, etc). The unlock system can be a pain, but it does encourage you to progress through the game, explore and play various archetypes.
The lore is great; the world has been excellently crafted (imo). While it doesn't read like a AAA novel, the depth of the backstory is pretty astonishing considering it's been done primarily by one man (props Darkgod).
When it comes to the gameplay, everything is surprisingly newbie-friendly (for a rogue-like). The UI is simple and easy, the controls are variable (keyboard and/or mouse, re-bindable) and the overly-complex item usage often found in the genre has been notably streamlined.
The graphics are solid. Now, take that with a grain of salt; this is a 2d game of tiles and sprites. If you're anticipating something like Dragon Age, you're going to be disappointed. I know that I was unpleasantly surprised. That being said, it has definitely grown on me and it certainly gives enough information on what's happening.
All that being said, this IS a roguelike. You WILL walk around a corner/open a door/open a chest and get exploded. Careful, cautious play is highly encouraged.
Overall, if you find yourself wanting to try out a roguelike but finding they are a little too 'hardcore' for you, give ToME a try. It's the only roguelike that I have found myself returning to, time after time.