This. The "flavour" of an RTS is so critical to its appeal. A lot of the early and mid C&C's had a ton of neat little tricks that you could pull off, or unneeded but amusing additions that the devs put in, just to flesh things out and give it more flavour. Like how in Tib Sun, blue tib is explosive and you can use harvesters as makeshift demolition trucks, or how in RA2 you can use Crazy Ivans on your own terrorists and fit them in a flak track, etc. Like a lot of this stuff is just plain stupid fun; it doesn't need to be balanced (as long as it's not horribly broken).
As much as I love StarCraft Brood War (and it still is in my top 5 RTS of all time), that game really did start the esports faggotry that dominated much of RTS in the late 2000s and throughout the 2010s. Brood War already sold over a million copies within the first couple years, and that had *nothing* to do with esports or large organised competitions. Because StarCraft was already a hit before that. People liked the aesthetics, the graphics are nice, the story is engaging; it's only like a couple years later that esports became a thing. So please, devs and publishers, don't go chasing that lucrative "esports" money. Just make a fun game, something you made with passion, insert dumb yet cool interactions, add flavour.