Ok, so if i'm understanding you correctly, civ should only be about choosing the the best of available potential positives? there should be no negatives at all? If so, then i'm a little confused. I'm running an empire, of course there is going to be negatives somewhere. My job as the Grand Poobah is to limit the amount of negatives that affect my empire in order for me to rule the world by whatever victory conditions I choose. I also play RPG's as well, and I'm afraid I really don't see the comparison between the two types of genres. In a RPG, it's all about the benefits to your character. Of course you want the best of any potential positives ( I. E. magic weps, spells, etc), and none of the negatives. But in a strategy game ( at least IMO), it's all about limiting your negatives, improving your positives, and planning ahead to achieve the goals you set out for. Basically ( for me at least), it's all about immersion. I want to feel like i'm in charge of a grand sprawling empire, react to random events that may impede my progress, adjust accordinly to my citizen's happiness or to world events, plan the demise of Monty, or even something as simple as protecting that cottage from a sudden barbarian invasion. Civ IV had all that. BTS raised the bar even better. Civ V just doesn't give me the same amount of immersion and enjoyment.