I already own 2 copies of Renaissance - one purchased at Amazon to get the non-updated, non-broken version so I could finish the thing - and 1 of Resurrection - which I've never finished because of all the bugginess and the way the Undead Hordes are so underpowered and handicapped it isn't even funny. Even so, I went ahead and purchased this based on the positive reviews that indicated a lot of the issues have been resolved.
I expected simply a better working, better balanced version of the original but I'm happy to say that this is an entirely different game all the way around. Not sure I'm happy with the new battle mechanics, though, but I suppose I'll get used to it. I can already tell that the balance for the Empire army has drastically changed - not nearly as overpowered as it was, which gives me hope that perhaps the balance of the Legions and the Undead Hordes has improved so that they aren't so weak. On the other hand, I will probably not use auto-combat in this one as much as I did in the others. My army tends to get decimated if I'm not in control.
Another hope is that I won't experience as many crashes as before, although the game did freeze up after one battle. Once I got the game to minimize, there was a low memory warning on the screen that doesn't make sense since my computer is built to be a gaming computer with as much gaming power as HP could give it.
Also have to mention the opening, which is phenomenal. Much better than the original. The storyline seems much improved as well. Kind of makes me wish I could read Russian so I could read the book that was written based on the game.
Despite the nerfed battle system (only my opnion, though), I believe this is going to be $30 well spent and I do recommend the game.