It seems you like Skyrim. For comparison, Skyrim has bigger world with a lot of encounters and dungeons, while KCD is more friendly unless you get lost in the woods during night while searching for hidden treasures.
The combat in Skyrim is simple hack and slash, KCD combat is more complex, you are automatically locked onto 1 opponent and using bow requires a lot of patience as you have no aim sign. All people have the same health bar and you can use different weapon types, slash, pierce, blunt for various armor sets that simply give you advantage while you can still damage enemy armor by hitting it till it “breaks” but you can not heal during combat.
The first 3 hours are a bit linear and there are more cutscenes, afterwards you get to enjoy open world in your classic RPG way.
The game was bugged in a way, you could lose a progress in game if it crashed or the quest was unable to finish because NPC wouldn’t talk to you or was missing while some quests are time limited. Bugs were usually resolved after loading old save (preferably before starting the quest), so in case you encounter problems, just load or restart game.
By the way, there are only two difficulties, normal and hardcore, while hardcore is for those who have finished KCD already because you will lose some important features and get debuffs. You will start on low level, illiterate, no skill in combat, hidden map parts and some parts in the story will need you to grind your skills so you can proceed. Since you like taking it slow, it shouldn’t be problem for you to grind on side quests before taking on main quest.
Skill level progression is same in both games, you improve it by doing it. Speak and you will get higher Speech.