I had no idea what to expect as a 24-hour free release and honestly thought that might be a bad sign for Troy. I had been waiting since the first Medieval TW, more than 15 years, for a Bronze Age game and I wondered if it might be a massive disappointment. Quite the opposite.
I haven't had enough time to dominate the Aegean from several perspectives, but my Odysseus campaign has been engaging and challenging. There are tons of town nodes to capture, usually several within striking distance of any given army, but the map is detailed enough that they still feel strategically different. As others have said elsewhere, resource scouting takes a front seat. The resource system is a huge improvement over previous releases, and surprisingly it hasn't seemed to break the game in any way (that I've seen). Even though food and wood can be hard to come by for a sea-loving people, I can trade bronze or stone to my allies whenever I need twigs and berries.
Speaking of allies, on the campaign map they're more valuable than they've ever been for me in a TW game. Not only do we barter every other turn so daddy can get a new pair of shoes, they go out of their way to help with battles occasionally and they don't betray me five turns into our alliance. I barely have to worry about Ithaca and the home regions because someone has my back for once...
Finally, I could look at that campaign map forever. The art style is a healthy balance of realistic interpretation and visually pleasing history/fantasy, and it works incredibly well. I absolutely love how they brought the myths down to earth without taking away the heroes we've heard about.
Hats off to the Sofia team! Unbelievable work for a game from a new TW studio with development/release during the pandemic. Bring back this leadership group for the next historical title please, I can't stress that enough. And that Epic free release for a day? I'm normally very stingy when it comes to DLCs as I disapprove of paying more for a game I already own, but I'd say we started this relationship off on the right foot.