variety of terrain, easy navigation, tree skiing, terrain park
crowded on weekends, touristy
Northstar gets a bad rap from locals because a lot of the tourists flock to this place, but it's a nice overall experience with good terrain variety for all levels, from first-timers to advanced skiers/riders. It's particularly good for intermediates looking to improve, as there's a lot of blue trails and also some shorter and somewhat "easy" diamond trails along the east ridge. Anyone who calls it "Flatstar" should be dismissed and don't take any advice from them; the backside has some decent pitch and they've clearly never bothered to head over to Lookout Mountain, which is pretty steep (Stampede in particular), and they likely don't even know where White Rabbit is located (head towards the backside from the top of Lookout Mountain - when permitted and for experts only).
Those of you looking for terrain parks, Northstar lives up to its reputation. With the Vista Express it's easy to hit it over and over again without competing for chairs with everyone else heading to the summit on Arrow / Comstock.
Another great thing about Northstar that often gets overlooked in general when reviewing ski resorts is how easy is to get around the mountain(s). The signs are very clear, the lifts are perfectly placed with multiple chairs to the summit, and you won't see poor snowboarders stuck on long traverses like at Heavenly.