I saw only negative reviews so let me bring some variation to the mix. If you have an interest in grand strategy games, and are willing to do a bit of homework (don't worry, just a YouTube search) this game will become really addictive.
The game is a strategy game, but you could also describe it as a role-playing game in the same sense as dungeons and dragons is a role-playing game. It's all about your chosen dynasty and how you develop it. So instead of a character you'll be playing a line of characters. That is if you're lucky enough to survive the onslaught going on in 15th-16th century Japan, and your family head manages to produce offspring. If you lose all your lands, or your dynasty ends it is game over.
This happens often, and that's a good thing. Not achieving the ingame goals doesn't really feel like a loss, just like the death of a character in a good book doesn't feel like a failure of the author. I just lost a game where I managed to conquer 50% of Japan (one of the in game goals) but I didn't manage to be shogun for 3 years (the other goal). So technically I lost, but I don’t remember it that way.
When early on I found out my character, the second clanleader of the Nanbu clan, had became infertile, with no male heir, I realized time had become an important factor in my strategy. Thankfully the father of the clanleader had already managed to conquer the complete northern tip of Japan by scheming with other small clans, and now the clan controlled about 20% of the map. I launched a frantic military attack on my most powerful neighbor, the Togashi, who had grown from a small region to the biggest force on the map, about 35%. With some help of another clan, the Amago, I managed to conquer most of his land, which also made his military strength weaken. There was not much the Togashi could do, being battered from the east by the Nanbu (me) and later on from the west by the Amago, who were about as powerful as I was. I started to divide my newly conquered lands under my vassals, who sadly were not my sons but other members of my court. I pressed on unrelenting, I had to achieve my goals with only little time left, as my clan leader started to grow older and older with no male heir. When the Togashi were wiped of the map and hadn't provided me with the right amount of land, I backstabbed the Amago with whom I had conspired before and took a lot of their land as well.
Because the clan leader of the Nanbu had become infertile at a young age he didn't produce any offspring. He finally became shogun at age 71. He was so close to victory he, and I, could almost taste it. And then he died at age 72, only two years short of achieving our goals.
Every playthrough becomes a short story like that. Never does the playthrough feel like you played it already, not even if you decide to pick the same clan for a second time. The thing is that you need some imagination to fill in the gaps that this simulator leaves you with. I guess that if you can't add to it with your own imagination this game is a dull list of stats. But if you can imagine the stats and the simple portrait of your character and other characters as being real, and manage to connect the dots, this game is an endless story generator.
To summarize; this game is more like a book than a movie, where for most games it is the other way around. For me every playthrough feels like an unique interactive story. I can imagine that to others it might seem like a glorified spreadsheet.