I've reclaimed my enjoyment of the game. The difficulty levels are really low by default, but the computer doesn't cheat and know the map in this game. Instead they get negative or positive bonuses depending ont he difficulty level. I have been told, the levels around the 'noble' difficulty means more of an even playing field for computer and user alike, so I'm going to try that level, next. I am learning how to use religion (not just for communication, but are big culture creators) and the new 'special people' (last night I got imotep, moses, and some other great people). I've also been told that some people complained about the map sizes in the beta, and so they suggest running the max sized map, which is, supposedly, enormous.
Anywho, after getting used to it, I'm back on the Civ bandwagon