[SupCom] Heaven critiques a replay

Supreme Commander YouTuber Heaven reviews a replay and in the process addresses key cross-game ideas. Topics raised include efficient resource gathering strategies, harassment, prophylactic (i.e. preemptive) defense against predictable threats, opportunity costs of idle or ill-chosen units, the importance of converting an advantage into a greater one, and unit efficiency improvement via increased alpha-damage of massed lower-dam units.

This particular map, Loki, has trees near the players' starts that can be reclaimed for energy, allowing construction of power generators to be deferred. However, not all reclaimable trees are created equal: some are actually "tree groups" that can be sucked up by a single reclaim action and contain more energy, while others are less efficiently-reclaimable single trees:

As in many RTS games, picking off enemy economic units early is important. LUCKYJAY's early mech marines pick off multiple expanding engineers before they were able to complete mass extractors (which single mech marines cannot quickly destroy). Heaven suggests the prophylactic move of escorting the forward engies with a tank and scout to preemptively head off low-investment harass:

LUCKYJAY's harass succeeds due to the engineers' being unguarded, but he fails to marry his control-gaining raid with his own economic development, a theme dogging his play throughout the game:

Heaven does a beautiful job articulating the opportunity cost of zachyattacky's overproduction of scouts: "This amount of scouts, that's 800 mass, so another T2 mass extractor upgrade...and you could have 40 tanks more by now, or two mass extractors more" As a game of SupCom develops, the main way players increase their baseline income of mass, which is usually the limiting resource, is by investing in costly upgrades to their mass extractors. Picking off upgraded enemy mexes is critical. Here, zachy effectively picked off his own extractor or killed his own army:

Some of the poor mass investment into scouts could have been recovered by self-destructing and reclaiming the unnecessary extra scouts. Unfortunately, zachyattacky allowed his scouts to be shot down. Overkill damage reduces a wreck's mass reclaim value. Here zachy's scout wrecks are worth 0 mass:

Having T2 units early is no good if they are idle and away from the action. Having T2 Rhino tanks sitting around is essentially retroactively delaying one's T2 timing:

Heaven points out that both players have failed to get a cheap commander upgrade, forgoing the opportunity to take and hold an additional base with its pressure:

T3 Loyalist assult bots have high movespeed and outrange the far-cheaper T1 units. By running directly through a group of T1 units, the Loyalists take unecessary and costly losses. In effect, zachyattacky paid extra construction costs for unused stats:

LUCKYJAY had a map control advantage all game, especially while zachyattacky was busy stifling his own production turtling and upgrading to T3. LUCKYJAY failed to leverage and increase his edge, which probably could have been converted into a win:

UEF T2 Janus bombers have some air-to-air capability, but normally are too expensive to rely on for such a role. Here, however, LUCKYJAY has massed enough relative to zachyattack's T1 interceptor force that the combined Janus AA DPS is able to take the fight quickly, without taking too many losses, not unlike DasTactic successfully routing enemy cavalry with his initial strike:

There was a missed opportunity to use some idle T1 artillery against a scouted position to force a response and investment from the opponent, as T1 arties out-range T1 point defense turrets:

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