Ummm, I don’t think the game was designed to be a one on one match-up over a multiplayer scenario. I daresay that many problems only arise when you have one whole side being controlled by one person and one faction moves soley to support the others on their team or having everyone move in rediculously perfect harmony, likely in a way that you would never have in a real multiplayer game. If you want that kind of game and descover that it’s not balanced for scripted movesets perfected over dozens of games with all sides moving in perfect sync then either realize your playing the wrong game or just use a bid and be done with it. The only balance that really matters is the multiplayer one, 'cause if you try to balance the game for the “perfect move match up” then anyone who doesn’t use those moves are screwed.
That’s a fine theory you have there. Unfortunately it is completely unfounded.
1. the rules are designed in such a way that despite any given power doing poorly, as long as their side wins, they win too. if A&A was a ‘real multiplayer’ game (your words) then that would not be the case.
2. there is rich variety in all A&A games, and these ‘cookie cutter’ worked out strats aren’t really all that scripted (again, your words). yes, standard openings get worked out, but that is not any more due to heads up or multiplayer games, but due to A&A players becoming better educated in their A&A game, and irrespective of the format.