I think it's already been established that PA will have a "flow" system, in that all production will be in units per second (ie +100 mass and +1000 energy per second) and that consumption will follow suit, so this is to talk about the other details. Specifically, what all the ratios for costs and performance will be. Economics heavily influences balance, pacing, and over all fun, so it's very important. First subject is initial resource production, as in, when you're using only the resource production methods immediately available to you at the start of the game. Take the example of Supreme Commander, Forged alliance. Tech 1 Power generators can be built anywhere and provide their own energy cost in production in 37.5 seconds. Tech 1 mass extractors can only be built on designated "mass deposits" but pay for their own mass cost in 18 seconds. The result of this: Map control was extremely important. With such a rapid return on investment in the limiting resource (mass) you couldn't afford to not build on any mass deposit that was available. Contrast FA to Supcom 2, where mass extractors paid for their own mass cost in 167 seconds. The result of this: Map control was much less important. I recommend that initial resource production follows something between supcom 2 and FA, and that resource producers pay for themselves in around 60-100 seconds. Second subject is upgrades/tech advancement: How resource production can improve, either through unlocking more efficient production methods, or through upgrading initial production methods. In FA, Tech 1 energy producers cost about 4 mass per 1 energy/sec production. Tech 2 cost about half that, and tech 3 cost about a quarter. However, because higher tech units also provide greater combat efficiency per cost, what happened when you turtled was this: You produce more resources more cheaply and more efficiently transfer that into more combat power. The result? FA strongly, strongly favors turtling based upon economics alone, because even small advantages tend to increase very rapidly (called "snowballing") In supcom 2, research worked very similarly: You gained research via killing things, research allowed you to make your units better at killing things, snow-balling into an enormous lead in a short time. I recommend that economic advantages provided by tech improvements be small, and/or unrelated to economic function. IE, a low-tech power generators produces 1 energy/sec per 100 energy cost, and a high-tech power generator produces 1 energy/sec per 90 energy spent, but also has higher health, and a built in radar/point defense/anti-air gun to make it harder to kill, or improves the build rate of nearby factories, etc.