Even with normal settings I had a hard time with the normal version of events, i.e Poland, then attack france, then turn against Soviets while holding UK in check and overrunning Africa.
Problem was always Soviet tech upgrades. I could never get deep enough into Russia before the odds turned against me. I could usually overrun Africa, but in the end it was too lengthy and the US would start invading in west africa or hit me as early as 43 in France. I tried a different approach:
What I do to deal with Africa is this...
a/ Even before Italy joins the war, I send several Italian troops to
The army in Tiranna, the army & corpse & HQ in northern Italy, they all go to Tobruk (having 2 HQs make a huge difference) before Italy even joins the war.
The main goal of that Italian force is to kill the pesky UK engineer and to hold it's ground in Mersa against the UK.
b/ I typically send a second German tank, a second German corps and two German armies to Africa too.
Once they arrive, the Italians retreat to Tiranna and go for Yugoslavia & Greece.
This is a heavy commitment. But once you have Cairo and later Gibraltar, you have pretty much secured all of north Africa for the rest of the war, which removes a major problem from your game.
c/ Once you have Cairo, you can move some German units back to Europe.
But keep at least the two tanks, one corps and the HQ in Africa and go to the Middle East: there are A LOT of MPPs to be won: Israel, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Quawait, Persia... it all adds up.
(I never got Turkey to join, so I do not know if all those cities go to 8/10 when you conquer all of Africa and the entire Middle East, but that would give you even more reason to go after the Middle East).
Plus, those few troops will keep a whole lot of Russian troops busy once they reach southern Russia.