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I've played RTS games before, but in those you could perfectly control your units and they weren't very needy. On here, the players are more dependent on you and you can only make suggestions really rather than giving them orders.

Also, should I worry more about defenses early on or attack to gain as much ground as possible?

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A lot of the game relies on the first few minutes, if a commander messes those up, it's almost game over.

As soon as you are commander, return to the bunker immedatly. If you are too far away, use the console to suicide or blow yourself up with grenades.

As soon as you sit comfortably in your commander chair, your first priority is to get a spawn to prime ASAP. The closer, the better, but you need to be fast. If your team capped and holds prime before the spawn is up, take the extra time to get a spawn directly on prime, if not, it's ok to get a spawn close to it first.

Your second objective is to get advanced kits. Build a powerplant while getting the tech at your bunker (forgot the name, field tactics i think), then armory and then research advanced kits immedatly. Don't build anything else beforehand, first relais&spawn, then powerplant&armory, don't build any MG turrets or supply in this phase.

After that is completed the critical phase is over and everything else is about communicating and strategy.

In all cases, pushing forward is more important than defending. The more resource points your team has, the more likely it is to win - and you won't cap resource points by defending.

Useful hints:

  • You can bind buildings to number keys by selecting them and pressing ctrl-[number], this is especially useful for the assembler. That way you can quickly build stuff by pressing for example 1 e for supply depots.
  • Never build MG turrets, they are far inferior to all other turrets. There are situations where you might want to build them, but until you have more experience, don't.
  • Spawns are the key:
    • Your team can use them to quickly move across the map. Instead of building turrets at secondaries which don't even prevent capping all that well on their own, you can just get a spawn there for half the price and have someone teleport there to take it back or protect it.
    • The closer the reinforcement path is, the more pressure your team can build up - which means the enemy will be pushed back more easily. This means you want to get a spawn as far forward as possible, sometimes even right next to an opponents spawn. Just don't build near rocket,flame or sonic turrets, your team won't like that.
    • Building 2 spawns next to each other combines them and allows your team to spawn at twice the rate, which means your players will spend less time dead and more time killing the opponent. This is very useful if you are near their base but can't break through.
  • Build supply near every spawn. This way your team will always know where to look for supply when they are hurt. Since you will be building spawns as far forward as possible this rule will make you always have supply at the front.
  • For heavily contested areas, for example the enemies base, don't hesitate to get 2-3 supplies right next to each other.
  • Sell old stuff if you are near their base to get some turrets to push in but keep a spawn near prime and near both secondaries.
  • Get forward powerplants to prevent a power loss when the opponent destroys a relay but keep the relais so you are safe against both loss of relay and loss of powerplant (though ofc not against loss of both). Power Plants always power everything they are connected to, even if the power to your base is cut.
  • Cover important pathways by rocket turrets but don't keep them in the open. Build them where the opponent has to run around a corner to get to an objective so he is right in range of the turret.
  • When building a Sonic/Flame turret right next to a rocket turret, the sonic/flame turret will kill the rocket turret even if the rocket turret is already set up and ready. You can use that to push forward.
  • Commander abilities are expensive, if someone of your team is near a BBQ sniping a key relay, tell that guy by name to defend the relay, don't waste money on killing the BBQ. However, if there is noone close by, it's better to spend those 2k resources than to lose power on key structures. Still, try not to use them and rely on your team instead.

Also, communication is key, use the voice chat. Tell your team what to do and listen to their requests. Tell them why you can't fullfill a request if you are busy doing something else.

Lastly, as Day9 from SC2 says: Probes,Pylons and keep your money low => Spawns, supply and don't stockpile resources unneccessarily. If you have more than 10k on the bank, you are doing it wrong (or you lost your assembler :p)

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