I haven't quite yet finished Elden Ring, and I also haven't even played Forbidden West, so I can't exactly compare the two, but I'll say something anyway. Up to now, my all-time favourite open world game is Horizon Zero Dawn, and I imagine when I do get around to playing Forbidden West I will love it as well. However, I also think that when I'm done with Elden Ring it will take that spot from Zero Dawn for itself. I'm still easily putting in several hours each day into the game, and I'm over 110 hours in at the moment. It's not a perfect game, the Haligtree section you mentioned is an unbalanced an annoying mess for example.
For most of the other stuff you mentioned, however, I never minded any of it. The small dungeons and repeated bosses didn't really bother me (for the most part, there were a few awful ones), but in my opinion they are fairly easy to ignore if you don't like them. There are still things I can't talk about because I just haven't done them in the game yet, but as things stand right now, Elden Ring will probably end up being one my favourite games ever.
Most Recent Articles:
My Twitter: @The_Darashiva