However, the learning curve isn't particularly hard. I had one of my friends buy it last night that has never played any of the games in the series. We played about 5 games in a row, and on the 4th game he was beating me (this is with me putting in quite a bit of time on the predecessor and this one as well).
That was me! Was nice to at least delegate the initial ass-whooping to someone I know
I am enjoying this game a lot more than any other RTS I've come across recently. Here's some reasons why:
1. The setting. I am especially fond of the planes, as I've spent a huge amount of time with the Su-27, Mig-29 and such in Eagle Dynamics' flightsims. I love those machines and have never seen the represented properly in an RTS. Until now (C)
2. The deck system with hundreds of units satisfies the TCG junkie that I am quite well
3. Realism and good gameplay are balanced and neither one is compromised by the other much at all.
4. How you use a unit matters a LOT more than the stats it has and how much it costs. An infantry squad can die in the open and not hit anything or pay for itself 10+ times with a deadly flank attack.
5. The game doesn't ever feel "unfair" for me. I always know why I lost, and there's always something I could have done to prevent it. Each game I can do something better than I did last game.
Now not everyone feels the same way about that last point, so they head to the forums or the chat lobby and do the things competitive RTS players do, which drops a bit of a shadow on the community. But if you ignore the noise, there's quite a lot of useful information on the forums as well.
All in all, definitely can recommend picking it up. Even though it's not released yet, it looks ready (except the SP campaign is not in) and I haven't encountered any technical problems myself. Runs so well, too, very surprised, given the scale.