Just spent a few hours with PhotoLine. It appears to be a comprehensive program that uses a very PS-like paradigm. It is not an exact PS clone, but will not take much learning for an experienced PS user. There are a few issues, however. It does not interpret Curves and complex layered images in quite the same way as PS, so a newly loaded, PS-generated file needs some intermediate work on the layer controls to get a similar result. The biggest problem I see is that it crashes with relatively simple and even flat PS files larger than about 1/2GB, at least on my 24GB system. But other than that, I did not seem to run into any software bugs.
I suspect that if you build images starting with PhotoLine, rather than importing existing PS files, it may work quite well. It certainly has a lot of features and feels very responsive. Color management is right on. And the price is very low. At the very least, this would be a satisfactory program for casual users and amateurs, and even pros who don't need a lot of fancy post. And it definitely feels upscale from Elements.