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Proposal to change Guardian Commander

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In light of all the frustrations caused by drones and how potentially strong they can be in the early game, I think it would make a lot more sense if instead of starting with a drone, the GC didn't get its first one until level 3. This would also keep it more in line with the Strike Commander, which feels a bit overshadowed right now by the GC. It is still pretty viable to get to level 3 for a few cheap upgrades or if you're going for a commander push strategy, but makes it so that you do have to invest something for the incredible anti-skirmisher potential that the drones give.

Especially the drone synergizes very well with the Rocket Launcher build, since that makes controlling the targeting of skirmishers against the GC a lot more awkward and wastes a lot of potential damage from the skirmishers. It's not even bad at spoofing raiders, and can dodge pretty well vs even glaives at max range.

The delay in getting the drone could be compensated by any of the following -
1) A free starting Damage Booster
2) A free Advanced Targeting System, accompanied by a small nerf to the range of the Rocket Launcher so that it doesn't get too good
3) More bonus hp on level up for the GC


Thoughts?
+0 / -0
7 days ago
I will basically never choose guardian in 1v1 because it is too slow and consequently hurts early expansion too much for my liking. Strike is pretty fast and balanced, engineer has the extra buildpower and more range on the nanolathe, and recon can jump. All of these seem more valuable to me.

I know others have other perspectives though.
+2 / -0
The Guardian Commander is the commander of choice for:

1) Low economy rushes with level 4 and rocket launchers (Recon should be better for no economy rushes still), often with skirmishers (see pro randy doing Guardian Commander and Ronin recently) while your drone(s) spoof enemy targeting. The heavy drone is particularly obnoxious to deal with. Note that if you really want to, you can get a slightly discounted area shield to go with your GC and make it even harder to do damage to your real units (untested in efficacy).

Strike Commander is also pretty good for a rush, exchanging better hp regen and the ability to get light particle beams and the best heavy weapons for the drones and GCs better skirmishing weaponry.

2) Pushing center and defense creeping

3) Defending against rushes

4) Gaining random scouting every time an enemy unit accidentally paths near your commander and getting free attritional advantage early game

5) There's also the drone spam commander build, which ruins skirmisher's days.

BTW Guardian commander is only 3.5 elmo/s slower than Strike at level 1, which is equivalent to one servo upgrade.
+1 / -0
Skirmishing commanders (Guardian Rockets + drones and Strike + range + light beam) are pretty strong and hard to fight for a lot of factories when supported with Ronins or Fencers and a couple raiders or Lotuses in 1v1 or small team games. The early best counter against commanders is a swarm of raiders or skirmishers, and a commander army can be built to negate both of these threats cost effectively.

The drones add free attrition damage for a skirmishing commander and can create an early game advantage by randomly killing a raider, or wasting shots from Scalpel/Moderator, especially against factories without cheap AA to stop the light drones. The drones fall off pretty hard after the early game and the heavy drone is almost always worth building AA against, so they have a limited window to shine, and their actual effectiveness depends heavily on the factory matchup.

Skirmishing commanders are probably not too strong balance wise and do not scale as the game goes on versus the cost of losing 4m/s, but they overperform compared to other builds and tend to encourage mirror builds and map movements. I think taking commander power away from skirmishing and putting it into more specialized roles would be a good change for the early game on the smaller maps.
+1 / -0

6 days ago
I have an Engineer based skirmishing commander.
+0 / -0