Sid Meier has won more awards than any other developer. The reason for this is obvious if you play any of the Civilization games. They are all very deep and very challenging. Civilization: Revolution is a step down in both.
To start off, you can pick from several scenarios or a random map. The scenarios are disappointing by Civ standards. You won't see anything like IV's 1000 AD here. The random map is also even more random now, since it lacks the World Setup screen, where you could specify things like barbarian activity and land mass type.
Next you will pick a civ. There are 16 total. Each has 5 bonuses and a special unit. Both are broken. Some civs bonuses and units will be completely obsolete long before you can even use them, while others will be relevant for much longer than the should be.
Once you start the game, you'll notice it moves incredibly fast. Instead of having fun managing cities and moving 100 units to keep your turn going, the only thing making it longer than 10 seconds will be your advisers, who pop up very frequently to tell you things you already know, or the same thing they just said one turn ago. This does at least distract you from the broken combat, which makes it possible to defend a city for a few thousand years if you throw enough Archers on it. Forget how many military wonders and attack points your opponent has; that Archer isn't going to die until someone gets Modern Infantry.
Buildings are also almost pointless, since their bonuses are mostly insignificant, and the much more important wonders can be built in a few more turns.
Next we have Tech. It was great fun going through the tree in the previous games. Now you'll be in "modern times" almost before you research the Wheel. This doesn't mean you get anything useful, but it sucks a lot of fun away.
All in all this just feels like a dumbing down of the series. With few reasons to build more than 3 cities and no workers, there just isn't as much to do. Skip this one.
I have been a Civ fan since the original, and was looking forward to a mobile version. On the surface, Civilization Revolution looks like a close cousin to Civ IV (the most recent computer version), but underneath the game has been streamlined for a simpler, quicker experience. Terrain, buildings, wonders, units, resources, and the tech tree are all much simpler than their Civ IV cousins, but the designers did manage to capture the "feel" of a Civ game. Overall, I think they did an excellent job creating a smaller set of rules that still provide a compelling strategy game.
Where the game really fell short for me was the user interface. Portions of it were very good. The controls were straightforward and allowed for easy control of your units and inspection of cities. The city management screen was also pretty good (although considerably simpler than its Civ IV counterpart). However there were a number of interface elements that were missing. I couldn't find any sort of summary screen showing all of my cities and their economy/production/etc, nor was there a world map. As I played longer, I kept finding myself in situations where I wanted some information that is usually readily available in a Civ game, but was mysteriously absent from this one. Eventually, the frustration overcame the fun of the game and I stopped playing.
It's a shame, because a mobile version of Civ would be great. I even enjoyed the simplified rules because sometimes a 1-2 hour game is preferable to a 20 hour marathon. But the frustrating lack of information screens eventually doomed this game for me.