Any cruise is very subjective as to whether it's nice or not. As I always say, 'what one person loves, another will hate.'
I have clients that love NCL and have others who hate them. I can say the exact same thing about every cruise line out there! It's all relative compared to their lifestyle, past experiences, and what they like or dislike.
I'm constantly getting phone calls from people who will say, 'Anything but Carnival.' I call them my ABC crowd. When I ask them why, they always say something like, 'My friend told me.....' Well, therein lies the problem - don't listen to your friend. You're different people, you like different things, and you want different things.
The fun part about cruising is trying them all to find those you like. But you can't determine which ones you like or which ones you don't like until you try them. That's the only fair way to do it.
My best advice is to go on the cruise with no expectations. Tell yourself you're going to have a good time and don't sweat the small stuff. There are always little things that will upset your cruise if you let them. The trick is not to let the little things bother you.
It's also like the saying I came up with, 'You'll always find what you're looking for, so look for the best in everything.' In other words, if you want to find negative things about something or someone, you'll always find them. Or you can look for the good in something or someone and always find that, too. It really does depend on what you're looking for.
And yes, sometimes parts will not meet your likes, but at the same time other parts will exceed your likes. So concentrate on those things you like.
So go on the cruise knowing you'll enjoy it, the kids will have a good time, and everything will be good.
Don't listen to those who are naysayers, because there are more of them in the world than are those who appreciate life and all the wonderment it has to offer!