This is a great strategy game for folks that want more than just another x4 with new skin. Pretty much every choice you make has future consequences and that causes you to plan out your immediate decisions based on goals you need to reach MANY years / turns later. This is not a game that you can just make a ton of troops / WMDs and win without a thought or brute force. If you go solo and try to take on the world by yourself, just like in the real world...the rest of the world will respond and come back at you in mass. I found that the game was pretty balanced in that EVERYTHIING has a counter. Folks mentioned the helicopters are over powered, but then again...how many have you lost due to being careless with them? You can only make so many. You can only have so many troops on the battle map at once. And if you make helo strong armies the AI enemies respond with Anti-Air strong armies to counter. There are a few annoying things that the game doesnt explain well that you pretty much have to just figure out or seems like programming bugs. Like using biological warfare on someone can effect your troops as well in same areas they were used until side effects wear off. This can lead to their movement points are restricted to the point that now your troops are locked into only the easiest terrain on battle maps. This means that part of your army can be cut off on the battle maps by hills and mountains and effectively isolated from rest of your troops / enemy. There's nothing to tell you it will happen until in the battle AND you cant do anything about it when it happens except finish the battle. It seems like a bug because the game doesnt explain what's going on, but once you figure it out the end result is you end up fighting more tactically / conventionally vs just bombing the crap out of every territory with WMDs and then just walking in w/o a fight. Just like in the real world you dont crap on a territory you want then expect to not get some poo on your boots when you get there!
The global campaign is a game of weeks, not hours or even days. If you dont have the patience for that level of planning or strategy, then you should pass this one by. To actually get the most enjoyment out of this game there is a VERY steep self-teaching learning curve but once you do spend the time I found myself lost in the planning and strategy for days at a time. There are a few mild bugs with the game / AI, but nothing that stopped me from conquering the world. But in the campaign mode the campaign missions are not optional. If you do not finish them, you dont "win" even if you outright conquer everyone else w/o them. I also found finishing them early / indirectly at times causes game to get stuck on needing to fill them later. This game pretty much demands Save, Learn, and Reload! But can be very rewarding and great distraction.