I find no matter what affinity or victory type I'm chasing (which tbh is domination 99% of time) - I always make sure to grab a handful of key techs to allow me to get before mid game starts ramping up the buildings which give very useful quest rewards. Obviously early game everyone goes ultrasonic fence and autoplant for the trade route immunity to aliens and +1 route per city. But beyond those I always get: 1. Organ Printer: +10 healing for all units. 2. Alien Preserves: +5 healing for all units With those two stacked, I find the extra +15 heal is incredibly useful either on offense or defense war. 3. Optical Surgery: +1 visibility for all units -very powerful and I always stack panopticon with it. Either I build panopticon myself or lot of times just annihilate first whichever AI built it to own it 4. Feed site Hubs: +10% worker speed -useful to stack with other worker bonuses, esp on large maps before building the miles of magrails.