That’s the way many people play it, yes.
Then there are those of us who fell in love with the very first paragraph of the very first chapter of the very first book.
“Before the world was bent but after the Great Contagion, there was a civilization built in the image of the First Age. It sought to emulate the splendor of the bygone Golden Age, but was in all ways less. It was a time of sorcery and heroism, of fabulous wonders and treacherous betrayals. Rule by a decadent empire, it slipped inch by inch into barbarism and darkness, until one last cataclysm blotted it out forever. Yet, in its sunset, it was a splendid thing, and glorious were the deeds of the Exalted.”
Which is to say that the game was conceived as a epic tragedy first, and some of us still play it that way.