At heart, Civ V is a boardgame. The type of person who excels at building a boardgame is quite different than someone who is a brilliant programmer. The old Id games (Wolfenstein, Doom, Quake) were incredible, technically speaking. Gamewise, they were very simplistic. And a lot of the game elements (basically everything outside the 3D engine) for Doom were not designed by Jon Carmack, but Tom Hall. Technically, Civ V is a giant leap over Civ IV due to the complexities of switching to hexes and 1UPT. But game design wise, a lot was removed from the table. Game design went backward in the latest iteration. Not only is the latest game simpler (not always a bad thing), but the balance is totally out of whack. And, like Sulla said, the fun parts were stripped out. What Civ V needed was to consult with a designer with a boardgame background. Someone like Matt Leacock (Pandemic), Andreas Seyfarth (Puerto Rico), etc... Someone who could say "Is this fun? No? Then how about this?" without regard for the technical or marketable challenges.