so, i received the game last night and began the slow, painful installation/downloading of patches. keep in mind, i'm in afghanistan, so the internet is not what people in the networking community call "fast".
without saying how many hours of downloading, installing, and configuring actually took place (because this isn't really the developer's fault), suffice it to say i did not get to play last night!
however, today everything SHOULD be good to go, so when i get off work i'm gonna throw some laundry in the wash and start in.
i should add that i played for about 5 mins when i woke up before i got ready for work, and based on this i can give an honest review and say that it's the best game in the history of the world.