As in the first Supreme Commander, it is possible to steal and use enemy factions' technology. Due to the difference in researching, however, it is not as simple as capturing, because building other units requires the correct buildings to do so.
How to steal and use enemy technologyEdit
Here is a basic summary of how to steal enemy technology:
- Find an enemy factory or engineer.
- Using your ACU or engineer click the 'capture' button and then click the enemy unit you wish to convert.
- You can tell when it has become yours when its color changes to your team color and you gain the ability to control it.
OR If you are the Illuminate, you can research the Illuminate Loyalty Gun, which converts enemy units automatically and can convert Experimental units (but this is generally a waste for many reasons. You need an engineer to build buildings and thus build Experimentals, and who would willingly send an engineer to an enemy loyalty gun?).
- If you capture a factory you can now build all starting units from it including engineers.
- If you capture an engineer you can build anything the other enemy can.
Another important note is that if you capture an enemy research station or build one with a stolen engineer you unlock the ability to use their upgrades. This allows you to, in theory, assume command of a fully upgraded army of UEF, Cybran and Illuminate units.
Note: Enemy faction upgrades only affect that factions units and buildings. If you build an enemy research station and then press the left or right triggers (on Xbox) then it will bring up the research tree of the units or buildings you've captured or built. Then you may research to your heart's content. Things such as mass and power upgrade boosts only affect that faction's buildings, so if you have only Cybran mass extractors and research the UEF mass boost, it will not increase production of your Cybran extractors, only UEF ones. Capturing enemy research stations, buildings or units will NOT give you any of their upgrades for your own buildings or units. Differing factions' ACU upgrades are useless, and will not benefit an ACU rush.
- The act of stealing technology can be useful or even crucial in a "guerrilla" strategy. If your attacks aren't being followed by heavy defense on your opponent's part, have a go at stealing some of it.
- Despite the above fact; this may also be a waste of time and resources. Bringing on an extra faction's resource needs will double the workload of your economy. This can be followed by your opponent amassing a far superior army and defeating you.
- If you are playing a Skirmish or Multiplayer match with the "All Research Unlocked" restriction enabled, all units you capture will have all available upgrades, even if you lack the associated enemy's research station, making this a more viable strategy.
- The most effective way of performing this strategy is to combine it with an early-game rush strategy. Once the attack has been initiated, send over a transport with 5-15 engineers and attempt to take your opponent's engineers and quickly transport them back to your base. Be alert, however, as the enemy can attempt to do the same.
- This strategy, if performed to perfection, is ultimately the most effective strategy in the game. In a one-on-one situation like shown below, you can duplicate your opponent's strategies, to use along with your faction's assault. In a match with more than 3 players of different factions, if you can successfully build an advanced base with all three factions, then there is no strategy you cannot use. You could use Magnetrons to pull enemy units towards a Loyalty Gun. You could send King Kryptors and Cybranasaurus Rexes anywhere on the map with a Space Temple. You could combine Airnomos with Bomb Bouncers, to counteract enemy air forces. The possibilities are limitless!