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Mothership core

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Shakurus SC1 Art2

This article is about the StarCraft II unit. You may be looking for:

"These guys are immensely capable, and a rare sight to behold indeed!"

- Radio Liberty on the core.(src)

MothershipCore SC2-HotS Art1

A mothership core

The mothership core is a protoss unit built from the nexus. It provides support abilities and only one core can be built per player.


MothershipCore SC2 Art1

A mothership core

While an invaluable part of the protoss arsenal, motherships are costly and time-consuming to produce. As a result, the protoss have begun constructing them in two stages, with the mothership core being the first step. The core itself is used as a defensive and support weapon until a mothership can be completed.[1] They share a strong psionic link with the khaydarin crystals located in every nexus.[2] The core is also equipped with a barrier that, when it is surrounded by the mothership's hull, is used to keep the crew on the rest of the ship safe from the powerful energies it generates.[3]

It is rare to see mothership cores on the battlefield.[4]


Mothership cores are equipped with a repulsor cannon, which draws its energy from the khaydarin crystal located at the heart of the core. It fires a blast of semi-solid psionic energy (too dense for aerial combat) that causes damage by delivering kinetic and thermal energy. Each shot pierces matter violently, leaving a misty cloud of psionic fire in its wake. Additionally, the core can channel psionic power into the khaydarin crystal located within a nexus, turning it into a deadly weapon. In this state, the supercharged matrix fires psionically imbued photon bolts that can tear through enemy scouts and light raiding parties, as well as deter larger attack groups until reinforcements can be warped in.

The core can bend space-time to create a field where the present dilates and stretches endlessly. The unpredictable energy flux within this field bears down heavily on anything that crosses it. Enemy forces caught in this time warp are slowed to a crawl, allowing protoss forces to dispatch them with ease. They can also use a nexus's khaydarin crystals as a warp beacon—releasing a large amount of energy, a mothership core can unravel the weave of space-time, teleporting groups of warriors to any nexus point in the vicinity (this is a form of recall).[2]

Game Unit

Mothership Core
MothershipCore HotS Rend2





Repulsor cannon

Maximum energy

200 (init. 50, resets to 50 when upgraded) Energy Terran SC1

Sight range



100 Minerals Terran SC1


100 ProtossVespene SC2 Game1


2 ProtossSupply SC2 Icon1

Build time

21 Time SC2 Game1

Produced from



Cybernetics core





Collision radius




Hit points




Armor type
  • Armored
Repulsor Cannon


  • Ground





+1 SC2ProtUpgrdAirWeap

Upgrades to



A player may only have 1 mothership core at a time.

The mothership core is available to players very early in the game and it is highly recommended that they build one in this stage.[5]

The mothership core is ill suited for late-game, due to its fragility.[6]

Its unit portrait is the same as that of the standard mothership. It likewise speaks with a female voice.


PhotonOvercharge SC2 Icon1
Photon Overcharge

In Heart of the Swarm, the mothership core uses this ability on a nexus, which gains a photon cannon-like weapon. The weapon has range 13, targets air and ground and deals 20 damage. The weapon lasts 60 seconds and has its own cooldown of 1.25.

In Legacy of the Void, this ability is cast on pylons, dealing 30 damage[7] with a cooldown of .71 seconds.[8]

Hotkey F
Cost 100 (HotS)/50 (LotV)[8] Energy Terran SC1
Range 10 (HotS)[9]/7 (LotV)[7]
Duration 60 (HotS)/14 (LotV)[8]Time SC2 Game1
Cooldown 20Time SC2 Game1
Mass Recall

Mass Recall teleports all units in an area 7[9] from a mothership core or mothership to a nexus. The ability is cast through a simple button click on a nexus.

Hotkey R
Cost 100 (HotS)/50 (LotV[10] Energy Terran SC1
Mothership SC2 Icon1
Transform Mothership Core to Mothership

The mothership core turns into a mothership, costing 6 supply.

Hotkey U
Cost 300 Minerals Terran SC1 300 Gas Terran SC1 71Time SC2 Game1
TimeWarp SC2 Icon
Time Warp

The mothership core creates a temporal field that slows all ground units’ movement speed within a 3.5 radius by 50%. This ability has a range of 9[11] In Legacy of the Void, its radius is increased to 8, growing over time, and not slowing units until it reaches maximum size.[12]

Cost 100[13] Energy Terran SC1
Duration 10[14]Time SC2 Game1


Main article: Mothership core/Development


  1. Blizzard Entertainment. 2012-12-20. Mothership Core. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2012-12-21.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2014-11-20, Mothership Core Science. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2014-11-26
  3. 2015-04-30, Mothership Science. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2015-05-01
  4. 2014-11-20, Robotics Analysis and the Heart of a Mothership. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2014-11-21
  5. 2012-06-08, StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Battle Report (Protoss vs Zerg). Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2012-06-21
  6. 2015-05-11, Legacy of the Void Beta: Balance Update Preview - May 11. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2015-05-21
  7. 7.0 7.1 2015-09-03, Legacy of the Void Beta Balance Update -- September 3, 2015. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2015-09-06
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 2016-01-29, Legacy of the Void Balance Update -- January 29, 2016. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2016-01-30
  9. 9.0 9.1 Aldrexus. 2012-09-28. Balance Update #4 (9/28/2012). Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion. Accessed 2012-09-30.
  10. 2015-05-14, Legacy of the Void Beta Balance Update -- May 14, 2015. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2015-05-20
  11. Aldrexus. 2012-10-26. Balance Update #7 (10/26/2012). Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion. Accessed 2012-10-26.
  12. 2015-03-31, StarCraft II Legacy of the Void Beta Release Patch Notes. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2015-04-03
  13. Blizzard Entertainment. 2014-02-04. Heart of the Swarm Balance Update -- February 4, 2014. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2014-02-06.
  14. Blizzard Entertainment. 2014-07-25. Heart of the Swarm Balance Update -- July 25, 2014. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2014-07-26.

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