I don’t see how LOUD changes anything, problem with air comes down to:
- extreme speed
- no collisions
- snowball mechanic inherent in combat
Having t1 or t2 “more relevant” does 0 to address any of these and doesn’t make the game more healthy. Ladder is prone to 400 ints fighting 400 ints just as teamgames are prone to 400 asf fighting 400 asf. Making a smoother spike in capability does nothing, especially since it isn’t like you can’t fight ASF with ints or t2 fighters like janus if you lean into it already.
If collisions don’t get added to air, we don’t mKe it way slower (like land unit speed), and the fundamental way airfights happen don’t get changed, the only solution left revolves around discouraging buildup which is only gonna be possible through AoE mechanics.
IMO flak is already a decent enough AoE tool for ints but idk if you would want t3 maa to be an AoE tool against ASF. I’d rather make air gameplay more interactive by introducing a new unit so you have a decision to make on when to transition and weigh tradeoffs. Currently only tradeoffs air slots consider are eco vs grid related and when to stop making ASF to spam out sams.
The problem with making t3 maa an aoe tool is that it causes the snowball mechanic to be a tool that ASF or air in general fundamentally cannot interact with. This causes the game to stagnate and ruins late game interaction since if you don’t engage early you’re going to waste mass in ASF. Meta will swap to making like 50-150 ASF depending on map and then transitioning to other game ender stuff. This isn’t as big of a deal with flak because t3 air exists as a response to disregard flak since it’s too fast for flak to be that good of a tool to respond against.
If you make a new unit you could have small groups of ASFs come to snipe aoe tools which could cost a lot or be a necessity to win big conglomerate battles, encouraging diff types of fights rather than -14 sim shitfests.