Since the RTS genre is stagnating somewhat, what mechanics would you add to make them better?
>Have a loyalty mechanic. During a battle, almost every unit has maximum loyalty but everytime they are damaged, they lose loyalty. The less loyalty they have, less chance they listen to your orders. If they haven't died by the time their loyalty reaches zero, they will run off and be uncontrollable. This gives a stategy to make sure you come out with the least ammount of damage instead of bumrushing everything.
Make micro irrelevant by giving all unit abilities an AOE. I'd like being good at a RTS game to mean more than being able to move your units in "optimum" ways with a memorized build path.
I think it's closer to completely dead. We've had something like 2 major RTS releases that I can think of in the past couple of years. Those being Grey Goo and Act of Agression. I don't really consider Total War an RTS game since there's no real base building and I think most people play it for the campaign. It's very non-traditional in any case.
If you just look at Grey Goo and AoA then I think the problem is lore and overcomplicating an already intimidating genre. Over the years I've bought nearly every RTS game there's been. Starting with Total Annihilation, Warcraft II, and Red Alert and ending with Starcraft 2, Kane's Wrath and COH 2. I don't think I've ever seen a game with less interesting factions than Grey Goo and AoA. In Grey Goo you have the humans who at this point have lost all interest in military technology. You have the Beta who have mostly samey looking walkers and light aircraft. And you have the Goo which is goo. There's no more than a dozen units on each faction and they're all boring.
In AoA everyone is a technologically advanced power with only superficial differences. Every faction could be a branch of the US military and you'd believe it.
I don't know exactly how to reinvigorate the genre, but stop being fucking boring for one. Even generic Orcs, Elves, Humans. and Dwarves fantasy is more fun than that shit.