Command centers, or "command posts", were designed to be roving resource processors for Confederate prospectors. The command center can up stakes and move on to new mineral or vespene deposits. They also have the ability to manufacture SCVs and serve as the return point for mining vehicles. With pressed metal plates, command centers are heavily armored and sturdy, though are slow moving whilst in flight, where they are at their most vulnerable.
Structurally, the command center is as wide as it is tall (3 stories), easily identifiable from a distance through its flashing beacons. Massive repulsor landing claws support the main bulk of the structure with external ablative plates reinforcing the main hull. Observation towers, antennae, sensor domes and other similar devices are situated above the center proper. Processors are also maintained to process resources, taking up the bulk of the command center's external space. Command centers may be relocated using jump-jets, but must shut down all other systems to move.
After the Brood War, the command center design underwent expansion, including extra bay facilities to carry a number of SCVs while the command center is in transit. This facilitates rapid exploitation of fresh mineral fields or vespene pockets, as well as supplying a handy shelter for the SCVs in case of enemy action. In addition, the increasing use of command centers in combat zones has also led to the development of standard schematics for upgrading them to a dedicated military role, a change from previous standards where command centers featured minimal staff and defenses. Two such military variants of the command center were the ATVXorbital command, designed for surveillance and asset management, and the Aresplanetary fortress, designed for planetary warfare.
Command centers of the Second Great War were equipped with Atlas boosters. The boosters could not lift the more massive planetary fortress.
The infirmary is located at one of the command center's lower levels. It is arguably the most well protected section of the command center, encased by the structure proper and set within its exact middle. However, command center infirmaries lack advanced equipment and only really function as a first-aid station, a place to keep an injured soldier alive long enough so that he/she can reach better facilities in time. Water is supplied via a basin and multiple bunks are present, which feature straps should a patient have to be restrained.
The operations room is situated at the very top of a command center. A ring of transteel windows surrounds the entire room, allowing an officer to look in all directions from the structure. The centerpiece is the command island however, a raised circular platform situated in the room's center. From here, command staff monitor activities of a base and the operations room itself. Various consoles are located below the island, specifically monitoring the aspects of a base. It is also from the operations room that general radio traffic can be monitored and answered. Security codes are stored here.
The reactor core provides power to the command center via fusion. This leads to a warm floor and a steamy environment due to the heat generated. It is located in the dark, lower depths of the structure, accessible via service ladders. It has a main bay.
The command center is the most durable base building without upgrading and can lift off, allowing it to fly into better positions. A commonly used tactic is to construct a command center in a defended area, and then fly it to another resource node to begin another base. However, like all other terran buildings, the terran command center will literally burn to the ground when lower than about 35% HP. Another dangerous weakness is the fact that command centers are able to be infested by zergqueens, resulting in an infested command center which creates explosive infested terrans.
Orbital commands replace command centers in the tech tree. Starting command centers for the player are replaced by orbital commands. Orbital commands may be converted into planetary fortresses, replacing the ability set with those of the planetary fortress.
An orbital command summons one MULE via drop pod. If the ability is targeted on a mineral patch the MULE will begin mining automatically. The ability may be used only on areas uncovered by the fog of war.
All structures repair themselves to 50% life. All structure fires are automatically put out.
This all-in-one safety system automatically dispatches robotic drones to put out any fires and perform basic repairs on damaged structures. Although these drones are effective at doing basic repairs, they do not have a strong enough AI to perform the more delicate repairs needed to restore a structure past 50% structural integrity.
The following section contains information from a previous version of StarCraft II which is no longer valid.
The command center was a solid month of work in StarCraft II. Design decisions constantly changed the landscape of the multiplayer art needs in the game, and when the dust settled, the revision was a monster task. Designing its planetary fortress and orbital command variants required even more planning.