Here's what I especially like about the vanilla game:
- The companions, with special mentions for Arcade and Veronica. Makes me feel a bit bad about Hardcore mode, although I had all but Boone survive while in it.
- And speaking of hardcore mode... to me it does give a bit of incentive to plan my movements. Not highly difficult to me though, but it's a start.
- Wild Wasteland
- The independence ending. Enough said.
- Modability, especially since I got some, including the Dummied Out content, Project Nevada and the jsawyer mod which would make hardcore mode... more so.
My thoughts of the DLCs:
- Dead Money is a pretty interesting take, and I could get behind its premise, but it actually turned out to be rather annoying and frustrating. At least I got the Holorifle out of that (and a few bricks of gold), and that's a plus.
- Honest Hearts has nice scenery and one of the best characters in the whole game (Joshua Graham), but there's nothing really much to it beyond that.
- Old World Blues, particularly with its comedic approach, is the best of the three, although such approach can wear out its welcome eventually, so I'm kind of worried about that. On the plus side, the additional perks there are rather sweet.
- And Lonesome Road is a nice, but still rather linear, conclusion to the saga continued from the past three DLCs. I like the solitude and the particularly powerfully-done character in Ulysses. I dread Tunnelers though; At least I can take on Deathclaws, but for these buggers, my strategy has to involve two steps: use a flaregun and run.
And now for a few (minor) gripes:
- Since getting the four DLCs, I did discover that it is still easy to max out experience, especially considering some experience-related perks may be a tad OP. Oh well, all the more incentive to have additional playthroughs to touch bases on wherever I hadn't explored/interacted yet.
- It sometimes still does have a chance of crashing, though not too frequently so.
- I'm finding it damn difficult to access Raul's companion quest (never got to it). I did see that it's been bugged, as the game still does have bugs (just not as much as from release IIRC).
- Invisible walls at some points.
Overall, I really like this game. Given the word limit, I'll perhaps give additional points in the comments.