Just so you are aware, the recommendations do come from people who are top tournament players on their servers and have tracked their tournament results as you suggest above. I also believe they have done this at different stages/chapters of the game.
The reality is there are a lot of different ways to win fights, some are better than others. I could grab 4 or 5 top tournament players and get multiple different recommendations. Information in any guide is a starting point but sooner or later it is best for a player to own their strategy and style of play.
Its a reason I haven't added updates to my combat guide lately, the underlying basics still hold true but the application has to become part of your play. Using the above example of mages, I know a elf player who is consistently top ranked in tournaments who loves the bud sorceress and regularly takes them over blossoms as their tracking shows them to be better. I have not tried to find the specifics of when and why, the point is they have taken ownership of their choice even if it differs to a common recommendation.
Are you referring to when they get their upgrades? If you are referring to training speed than this is incorrect and varies based on individual player circumstances. With all things equal then training grounds is a slower building but rarely are all things equal. Wonders and the alternating tech tree influence the speed for each player.
I have not seen such a tool but what I used to do was set a goal of how much tournament I wanted to do. If points is your goal you can run the maths or use the tournament calculator on gems (which also shows rewards). I would note my troops prior to each tournament starting and ending. I knew how many troops I would expect to finish a tournament with by doing this and it became obvious as my techs changed and wonders increased to see when I should increase my goal as my troops at the end of the tournament would be higher and higher then expected.
You then set a new goal and monitor again, like crazywizard said if the troops are going up then you can do more. You may also find this needs to vary by tournament, for example dust and scrolls are typically tougher and you may struggle to do the same amount.
I am not buying this at all.
Banshees suck in all ways just like sorceres do,
Dryads are in no circumstance te best unit.
Lets take this advise as an example
Now lets compare this to my unit breakdown I made some years ago on my website
See the link?
The raw power agains heavy melee the dryad is the best. and heavy units are the main enemy in this tournament.
Now comes the kicker, Elite archer has the power -20% defence, and both heavy melee units (orc warrior/general and swamp monsters have 2 move and no range attack. this means even when (any) archer (or blossom mage) attacks they are still out of attack range of these units. 5% defence vs heavy melee or 80% defence vs heavy melee doesnt matter as long as that unit can't attack you.
Anyone who played manual in the steel tournaments knows that the most fearful unit is the thornrose mage as it's hits both hard and from a long range. both the elite archer and the (pro) ranger hit this unit much harder than any dryad can ever do.
It also helps that both 3* variants have as a special power a defence breaker making it easier(not easy) to get rid of thieves, heavy melee units and those pesky thronrose mages
As for the ranger, 4 move and 90% defence agains mages help a lot in getting rid of that pesky enemy on turn one, and if it's impossible it can absorb the first hit. (especially usefull in manual combat)
(Poison) Dryad has an expremely poor damage range vs the thornrose mage 19.8 per weight vs 30/32 and therefore can't even be considered competion to both the other units. even at the strongest version of the dryad can't even compare to a 1* unit from the other 2.
It also doenst help that the poison dryads special power reduces the enemies attack. as that won't help them kill the enemy any quicker.
Ranged units should avoid to be attacked at all and since there are no knights they won't be hit at all
Not getting hit or weaken the enemy massivly before it can hit is the whole point of ranged attacks. so such a power is in general a poor one.
The best defence agains an enemy is getting it killed ASAP because a dead enemy can't hit back, therefore a power that kills more enemy units is also a way to get hit less hard in return because again a dead enemy unit can't hit back.
This useless power is also the reason why the mortar sucks beyond reason, and the frog prince got nerfed a while back.
This kind of advise I just grabbed from that page the entire gems page is littered with it.
So the claim that these advises are made by very experienced combateers / tournament players can't be true.
It's impossible, no sane experienced tournament player would make this advise, unless they are trying to harm "the competition" on purpose.
I think I know what I am talking about, as for tournament results, I think I have build a pretty decent track record over the past several years.
I am eager to learn and just in case we would be wrong in our analysis we actually tried agains better knowing those units (banshees and dryads) and confirmed our findings
When we give "general" advise, we should take into consideration how the general public plays.
You can easily make the case that the far mayority will use autocombat, and this is where the general advise should be targetted at.
Edge cases should be ignored and can't be the basics for combat.