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Much more interesting story, but man is the difficulty curve quite different from the first game. I know it's due to the fact that the "tutorial" from AW1 has more-or-less been worked into the Orange Star section of the campaign, but still. S-Ranks are way easier to obtain, at least, so I've got to give credit for that.
It IS nice being able to use more than 3 different CO's during the main story(In the original you only got to use different CO's during the Final Battle, as Eagle was auto-pilot in his assist mission), and since they bothered to increase every nation's members from 2 to 3, it adds even more variety, and so far the newcomers play better than the veterans, for the most part. Colin is a handful in the right hands, Sensei is beast with the copters, and while I haven't reached Green Earth yet, I imagine Jess will be interesting as well.
It's also easy to see how much this game inspired Dual Strike and, to a lesser extent, Days Of Ruin.
VideoGame Playthroughs: www.youtube.com/azuretranquility See quote for hardcore M&LSSS
AW2 is generally found to be easier than the first game in the series. However, considering that the original game had some missions that were really brutally difficult, especially in the Advance Campaign, the difficulty downscale is not necessarily a bad thing. At the very least, it made the series more accessible.
As far as playing basics go, it's good to remember that stronger units are not absolutely better than their low-tech counterparts. Having more weaker units on the field is generally preferred to just having a few strong ones.deployed. Most of the time, top-tier units don't show up until late-game. Other good advice is to use your CO powers well. Make sure to set your units up to deal maximum damage during (S)COP turns.
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