I agree HC gives that little edge. But this isn't D3.. POE is much more ellaborate if it comes to the skill tree and mechanics. And as a new player you simply don't know these things. Even when you follow a good build to the letter you are going to have a hard time at start?
You can declare your eliteness to the pope and his mother as much as you like, but as a new player you won't have much fun if you die 20x before lvl 30.
It's not eliteness (even though I know that's the general opinion of the HC crowd), we just think it's more fun. I enjoy the game a lot more when I need to focus or risk losing everything. I don't care much about reaching the highest maps or farming 100 chaos per day (but I do appreciate the tip and I'll use it if I ever get to T10!), if I can get the same excitement progressing through low level maps in gear that in TOTAL costs 10c. But that's just how I enjoy the game, not saying it's better or worse.
I didn't enjoy HC much in D3 btw, but for some reason it suits PoE for me
And yes, it can be quite brutal if you're new. But Gromk brought his first char ever in HC to like 50+ (I think) before his first RIP. To be fair that death DID make him quit the game, so looking back SC might have been more his thing