I have to agree with both sides on this issue, though this game did not go over well at all with my crew. Part of that was the combat system that felt like a separate game within a game that didn't work through characters more than limiting what was available for the player vs. player action. I was indifferent to it, once it was learned, but it was never accepted by any that I played with. On the other hand...
DQ has always been the "laugh at death" game of games. Players of old have always accepted that they might die as often as 75% of the time. It may be that the needs and desires of players today have changed and this is no longer sought by as many players for what it is. No one should expect to survive a game of DQ and yes both striving and dumb luck will be needed if you do.
On the third hand, the slant of what is found in any form of search (room, corpse, chest, etc.) has lost the nature of a dungeon stomp. There is no way a bunch of dead adventurers (corpses) would be carrying so much harmful stuff. If used, it would have been used up in killing them; if not used, well, you get the point. Adventurers bring stuff with them that is helpful; if they get killed, its usually because they didn't have a chance to use that stuff. Then again, the denizens of the dungeon probably strip the bodies, leaving the bad stuff if they know its bad or risky. They'd take most of the good stuff for their own use.
Of course this is all a justfication, as it's doubtful that much thought actually went into those decks. Similar but different probability disparities exist in crypts, which might be cursed or trapped but have more potential for more advantageous gains... if one accepts that each new game is somehow the first incursion into this realm in a long long while and those crypts haven't already been gutted... or maybe new ones were built. Hmmm... who would want to be buried in this place? Certainly not anyone nice, and the monsters here wouldn't enshrine an invader... unless maybe it served them to do so in some insidious way.
The easiest way to tweak DQ is to look at the cards in each deck (which were not well designed for quickly distinguishing between their backs). Try taking out one card that is the worst result in each one. This may tilt the balance just enough without making them a pile of freebies that takes away the intended level of threat. As to those "good" cards in there being too weak, I for one wouldn't change that... well, the potions are pathetic over all. But even when we still played DQ (it now gathers dust), we'd still grab just one as that last ditch when death was nigh. It was better than nothing.