A VS extension is definitely a good substitute for a specialized IDE, but it's still an extra on top of an easy way to compile and run programs, which should be the first priority but often isn't.
There are a few common patterns of bad tools: pathetic support for Windows (experimental and/or obsolete and/or incomplete packages, or deliberate omission), enormous platforms (e.g. bundling Emacs or Eclipse) and invasive installers, and more rarely sucking portably (e.g. the convoluted privileged classpath parts and JDK/JRE redundancies in Java).
For example, when I tried Haskell I struggled with a slightly obsolete nonstandard installer using nonstandard file locations, and even if I managed to compile programs it deleted my PATH environment variable anyway. I was unusually motivated, otherwise I would have given up before downloading anything at the choice between Cabal and Stack and between the barebones GHC distribution, the big Haskell Platform and other variants.
Ease of update, preferably from sources, is also more important than IDE features.