Some players and reviewers have agreed with you, though in fairness not all; some have praised the devloper for retaining the difficulty of the earlier Fantasy Wars. (Although not advertised as such, EL is really just an additional campaign pack for that earlier game.) It's certainly a matter of taste. For me, like the OP, the turn requirement sucked the fun out of this game. I posted this on these forums a couple of weeks ago (the thread has fallen off the first page):
"It's a good game overall, but its appeal may be limited by some of the design decisions. You probably hit the largest problem squarely on the head: while the game is a lot of fun to look at and play, and has an excellent UI, that fun gets decreased by the puzzle-like nature of the maps coupled with the tight turn requirements to achieve victory. This sort of precludes general exploration of the otherwise inviting looking map, a gaming element I particularly enjoy. In addition, and this will depend on your tastes, I find EL to be a bit one dimesnional since it lacks almost any 4X elements. It's a bit like taking the tactical battle elements of HOMM, Age of Wonders, King's Bounty, or (by educated guess) the forthcoming Elemental and removing all the strategic elements of those games like city/economy/resource management, empire building, and exploration. I realize that this foucus appeals to many players, but it makes the game a little lacking for me."
FWIW, the sales of this game appear to be poor judging from the pretty dead official forums (on the Paradox forum site) and that fact that, less than a month after releases, GamersGate currently has it on sale for half price.