I'm about halfway through -- I think -- and so far it feels like a mixed bag.
Some things got "streamlined." Quests do feel a bit more fetchy (and, if you notice, fewer of them are things you can complete locally -- they want
you to explore) and on rails.
On the other hand, they've clearly taken a page from Minecraft (first glimpsed, if dimly, in the Hearthfires expansion for Skyrim) in letting player go nuts crafting new things, including systems of sensors and powered switches... and they haven't even released their official modding kit yet.
I do want to make one comment about one of the complaints quoted above:
They give you a pathetically short intro in which they introduce you to your family, and whisk you off to a Vault. Why do I care about these people?
Yes, that would be because people -- possibly these very same people
-- griped bitterly that the intro in Fallout 3 was "too long" before letting you go explore the world. In other words, with Fallout 4, Bethesda gives people what they demand, and then people complain about that, too. Geez.
Fallout 4 isn't perfect. And the people who still insist that Fallout 1 and 2 were the only true Fallout games are always going to find things about Fallouts 3 and 4 to object to. I might even agree with some of those objections... but good grief, there is a buttload of solidly enjoyable fun to be had in Fallout 4!
And again, that is before the gates to modding are flung open. Once people can crank out mods without Bethesda breaking them with patches, any mechanical parts to the game that someone doesn't like can probably be improved.
As for objections to non-mechanical aspects of Fallout 4, like "not enough story" -- would those folks rather no one had any new Fallout games to play at all because this one doesn't manage to achieve War and Peace
levels of commentary on the human condition?
Failing to be a perfect game does not make it a bad game. In fact, I think I'll go play it some more right now.
It's definitely not the same people complaining, it's just the 'audience', and different parts of it. I personally enjoyed FO3's introductory passes, even though they were also rather bare bones, sterile and cold, in a way. They still gave me at least half a glimpse into life in the Vault (that consists of 30 guards and 10 residents). The way to make it more enjoyable would have been to make it less sterile and expand upon it, not chopping it down to five minutes of staring at a baby-like object and then exchanging hollow 'love you's with a partner, before being ushered quickly to get heartstring-tugged and shoot up wild dogs. Besides, a quick start can easily be achieved, and a lot of mods have done it. Give the option to just drop the player in the wastes, with a text introduction and a handful of items that fit who they chose to start with. There you have it, an option for a lengthy introductions, and a quick-cheap-easy way to immediately start and not care about babies and spouses, too.
It depends on what's 'enjoyable' content. The inch deep, miles wide stuff Bethesda provides as of late is not my thing at all, I simply don't find it compelling or 'fun', personally. I put down Skyrim after a couple of hours as well, because yeah, I can explore, but the puzzles are dumb and people are boring. I might rather have the IP sitting and collecting dust, actually, waiting for a competent developer with more story writing skills and an understanding of how cRPGs are supposed to look like, and not beating up canon with a spiked baseball bat. But then again, personal opinions, and I'm obviously the minority here.
I'm not asking for perfection. I'm asking for an entirely different direction. And I think that's fair, since the series took a serious one-eighty. Fallout has always been about playing a low-int character, or being a dick to people, or just plain doing whatever you want, without being on the rails of the main character's supposed personality. The whole thing's like the new Ghost in the Shell MMOFPS. It's just not what Stand Alone Complex was about, it completely misses the point, it doesn't even try the 'War and Peace' thing, and I'd rather it didn't exist. And I think I can freely expect good writing from franchises previously focused on good writing, or at least an attempt, and I don't deserve mockery for expecting so.
I would have loved to like this game. I'm holding out for ELEX now, to give me my fix of apocalypse.