In addition to a three-map, four-year grand campaign, the game has several smaller scenarios, including single season, one-mappers, to accommodate every schedule and area of interest. The innovative map layout divides Europe horizontally rather than vertically to enable two-front struggles on a single map sheet. Taken together, the maps permit a degree of strategic speculation absent from operational-level games. For example, the British can invade the German or Adriatic coast instead of the Dardanelles.
Balance of Powers also portrays diplomacy and economics. A haggle-based diplomacy system enables history buffs to recreate the land-swap politics of the period, or players can opt for a simpler, streamlined schedule of neutral entry with a dash of randomness added for surprise.