It \is true that most religions do focus on some central person. And they consider that person to be the best example of human and divine perfection. So when hasidim focus on some unique individual you can understand the power and force that must have on people. The only problem is that it is idolatry. And it is idolatry that covered by by lots of neat rituals that are in fact based on Torah and Halachah. But the center of focus is the tzadik. And the more they hide it the worse it is.
The societies of Hasidim are legacy societies, weighed down by the traditions, superstitions and animosities, unleavened by the core concept of individual rights. Until Hasidim renounce their past, there will be no room in which to build a new future.
But Hasidim will not renounce their past. They haven't outgrown their belief in magic. So Hasidim look to rich secular Jews and cry, "Help us! Feed us! We are poor and terrified, you are rich and strong! Bring your breadbasket and deliver us from the darkness!" Every Hasidic community is totally dependent on charity for it very survival. And they are communities based on connections and dealings--not on Torah. Judging solely from history, no Hasidic community has achieved the preconditions for a just, peaceful, and prosperous social order. False messiahs are the least of their problems. More like there is not one single functional group.
What I was hoping to point out here was the problem of the focus on the tzadik. They idea of needing a mentor and an example is a true idea. But what happens is that every tzadik has some negative side. And that side may be hidden from view. But when people intentionally attack themselves to the tzadik they usually get attached to some kind of Sitra Achra energy as you can see on their faces. And anyone sticking around them long enough can not escape that energy. They get absorbed into it and lose their human soul.