I lost my first major battle in easy mode. Then I lost another one on the next turn. It's my own fault, I suppose. I'd gotten too complacent. I kept reusing the same frontline armies, and hadn't been paying much attention to my cities' defensive garrisons, except as a way of keeping order inside my borders. Losing a city to the Spanish, of all people, was really demoralizing.
My takeaway from all this is that I kind of hate this game. Not with a burning, fiery passion or anything. It's just orthogonal to my interests and the one time I fooled myself into thinking I'd reached a rapprochement with its strategic demands, I get slapped down for not paying close enough attention . . . heck, maybe it's myself that I hate. . .
Let's just call it a wash.
I think my next move from here is to try out this Warhammer mod I downloaded the other day. I don't actually know anything about the Warhammer, except what I've been able to glean through the Rogue Trader rpg (which is basically nothing), but it should be interesting to take a look at all these fantasy military units. My hope is that it will take my remaining five hours just to work through them all.