For the first half, absolutely - it's brilliant. Then everything goes downhill and you do exactly the same thing over and over and over again for another 20 hours (though I believe there's some sort of "shortcut" that skips most if it, but you won't see the true ending).
Overall, I would say yes. I've enjoyed it enough that I don't regret my purchase. But the difference in quality between the first and second half is like night and day.
About that - it's not exactly the same thing, and you only actually have
to do a certain small part of it to proceed each time. And to clarify, this only has to do with the pacing - the actual gameplay and story do not drop off as well.
There's also the fact that you have the opportunity to get the false ending way before the true ending.
It's hard to talk about this without spoilers, but hopefully this helped both of you. Really, I didn't think it was nearly as bad as everyone made it out to be.