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"With such specialized units being available, there is certainly a hole to be filled when it comes to diversity, and the Raven does that exceedingly well. As one of the Terran’s most capable units, the Raven is an ideal drone, capable of providing unmatched protection and extremely valuable reconnaissance."
Raven SC2 Art1
Earliest sighting





Seeker missiles


Aerial support


2 (1 terran, 1 AI)

The Raven,[1][2] formerly known as the Nighthawk, Vulkan[3] and the TF-620 Nomad,[4][5] is a terran air unit featured in StarCraft II. It is based on constructing objects.[6]



Raven SC2 Head2

A Raven pilot

The raven is controlled remotely by a terran pilot[7] while the craft's computer houses the main AI core that regulates all critical ship systems and sub-systems. The AI closely monitors variables like overall condition, temperature, energy levels, and external hazards. It processes billions of instructions per second, affording the Raven an ample degree of independent thought and decision making. A few military consultants, speaking on condition of anonymity, have expressed concerns that such a powerful AI could gain sentience, leading to abject disaster. It has been claimed in response that "there's no evidence to back up those claims, and subsequently, no reason to worry."[8]


"Yeah, let's give robots the ability to sweat. Battlefields don't smell bad enough already."

- A Dominion marine in regards to the Raven's weeping holes(src)

Raven SC2 Game1

Ravens in flight

Functionally, the raven is a a robust all-around air-mobile vehicle and workhorse that combines the functions of a surveillance drone and a combat engineer.[9] Layers of neosteel and synthetic weave make up the bulk of the raven’s fuselage, with sturdy, space-grade fabric between each layer to provide insulation for internal components.[8] The raven is built to operate independently in harsh climates[9]—the stabilizer fins and key points of the structure are equipped with microscopic weeping holes, which allow for the release of a multipurpose solution to break down ice buildups or cool the fuselage, depending on the environment the vessel is operating in.[8]

Ravens excel in protection and reconnaissance due to their defensive auto-turrets and their advanced sensors, which can detect cloaked and burrowed enemies,[9] and unmask protoss hallucinations.[10] The craft is equipped with an advanced manufacturing plant, where hundreds of thousands of AI-operated nanomachines diligently assemble a diversity of mission critical equipment, such as the auto-turret, point defense drone, and the seeker missile. These onboard production capabilities give the Raven greater operative flexibility than its science vessel predecessor. Its sensors consist of state-of-the-art surveillance and reconnaissance hardware. Two radars, operating at high/low frequencies respectively, and four high-resolution, multi-spectral cameras allow for target acquisition and tracking at long ranges. When the vessel’s low frequency radar detects anomalies, heuristic detection algorithms supported by thermal and electrical imaging sweep the area to find any cloaked threats.[8]

During the Defenders of Man Insurgency, the Terran Dominion deployed advanced ravens in the covert ops crew of Nova Terra. These ravens had the ability to deploy spider mines, and use bio-mechanical repair drones to heal allied biological and mechanical units.[11]


Raven SC-FM Art1

A Raven

The Terran Dominion initially designed the raven to give low-level protection to its most isolated outposts, but recently the raven has been used in escalating levels of conflict to replace the older and costlier science vessel.[9] Stunning successes in the afforementioned role brought it into more frontline use as a battlefield support unit.[10] Further upgrades and adjustments were implemented, as the ship transitions into a more active role while conflict levels escalated.[8] Ravens are a common sight among the Fringe Worlds,[9] and have become more common throughout the Koprulu sector. Many wonder if the "protection" they offer is just an excuse the Dominion uses to spy on its citizens.[8]

Raynor's Raiders had access to ravens as early as the initial months of the Second Great War.[12] They continued to be used by terran factions through the Second Great War and the End War,[13] and advanced versions of the raven were used by Nova Terra and her covert ops crew during the Defenders of Man Insurgency.[11]

Game UnitEdit

StarCraft IIEdit

Nighthawk SC2 Rend1



TerranDominion Logo2a Terran Dominion
SpectreOps SC2 Decal1 Tosh's Goons
RaynorsRaiders SC2 Logo1 Raynor's Raiders (2504–)
MoebiusForces SC2 Decal1 Moebius Corps


Aerial support unit

Maximum energy

200 (init. 50) Energy Terran SC1



Sight range


Detection range



100 Minerals Terran SC1


200 TerranVespene SC2 Game1


2 TerranSupply SC2 Icon1

Campaign Cost

20 protoss research points

Build time

60 Time SC2 Game1

Produced from



Tech lab/Tech reactor (attached)




3.15 (WoL/HotS)
3.85 (LotV)[14]







Collision radius


Hit points



1 SC2TerrShipArm

Armor type




Kill score




The Raven is analogous to the science vessel of the original StarCraft, and are "primarily support craft" for the terran factions. They have no standard attack of their own. They are strong against siege tanks.


This unit can detect cloaked and burrowed enemies.


The Raven deploys an auto-turret. The turret has building-type armor and a high rate of fire. It makes for a decent defender and an even better harasser.[15]

Cost 50 Energy Terran SC1
Duration 180 (240 with Durable Materials) (WoL/HotS)
10 (LotV)Time SC2 Game1
HuntSeekMiss SC2 UseAble1 Seeker Missile

The raven deploys a seeker missile that hovers for five seconds before launching at the target. Deals 100 splash damage against both ground and air unit, in a radius of 2.[16] +35 shield damage is dealt when used in Co-op Missions.[17] The splash damage can damage friendly units. The missile moves at a speed of 2.953.[18]

The missile can be avoided if the targeted unit avoids it long enough. The targeted unit is visually indicated by a red aura.

The missile cannot target buildings.

Cost 125 Energy Terran SC1
Range 6[16]
Duration 15 (increased to 20 with Durable Materials upgrade)Time SC2 Game1

Deploys a drone which intercepts missiles and shots, such as those fired by missile turrets. It cannot stop special attacks.

Cost 100 Energy Terran SC1
Duration 20, longer with Durable Materials upgradeTime SC2 Game1


CorvidReactor SC2 Game1 Corvid Reactor

Increases the starting energy of the Raven by 25.

Purchased from Tech lab attached to starport
Hotkey T
Cost 150 Minerals Terran SC1 150 Gas Terran SC1 110Time SC2 Game1
DurableMaterials SC2 Game1 Durable Materials

Not available in Legacy of the Void

Purchased from Tech lab attached to starport
Hotkey D
Cost 150 Minerals Terran SC1 150 Gas Terran SC1 110Time SC2 Game1
Wings of LibertyEdit

Increases the armor of all terran air units.

Purchased from Armory
Hotkey P
Level 1
Cost 150 Minerals Terran SC1 150 Gas Terran SC1 160Time SC2 Game1
Level 2
Cost 225 Minerals Terran SC1 225 Gas Terran SC1 190Time SC2 Game1
Level 3
Cost 300 Minerals Terran SC1 300 Gas Terran SC1 220Time SC2 Game1
Heart of the SwarmEdit
SC2 TerrVehArm Terran Vehicle and Ship Plating

Increases the armor of terran vehicles and spacecraft

Purchased from Armory
Hotkey V
Level 1
Cost 100 Minerals Terran SC1 100 Gas Terran SC1 160Time SC2 Game1
Level 2
Cost 175 Minerals Terran SC1 175 Gas Terran SC1 190Time SC2 Game1
Level 3
Cost 250 Minerals Terran SC1 250 Gas Terran SC1 220Time SC2 Game1
Legacy of the VoidEdit
ExplosiveShrapnel LotV Game1 Explosive Shrapnel Shells

Increases the damage of auto-turrets and seeker missiles by 30%.
Legacy of the Void only.

Purchased from Tech lab attached to starport
Hotkey E
Cost 150 Minerals Terran SC1 150 Gas Terran SC1 110Time SC2 Game1

Wings of Liberty CampaignEdit

In StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty, Ravens are unlocked through research. This costs 20 protoss research points, and is an alternative to the science vessel.[19]

SC2 Lab Raven Icon Raven

Unlocks the raven for production.[19]

The raven is an unmanned surveillance drone that can detect cloaked and burrowed enemy units. The raven can also serve as a combat engineer by placing auto-turrets and point defense drones and firing seeker missiles in strategically vital locations.

Campaign Acquisition
Acquired from Hyperion laboratory for 20 protoss research points
SC2 Lab VanPlating Icon Vanadium Plating

Armor upgrades increase health of affected units by 5% per level.[19]

We have created a new lightweight alloy called vanadium. Vanadium diffuses weapon impacts much more efficiently than traditional armor plating, and it better preserves the life of our units. Now each of the armor upgrades in the armory and engineering bay increases unit life by 5% in addition to increasing armor.

Campaign Acquisition
Acquired from Hyperion laboratory for 5 protoss research points

Increase starting energy of all units by 100. Increase maximum energy of all units by 100.[20]

This reactor has a larger energy reserve on startup and can hold a much larger charge. Now our specialist units can use their abilities the moment they hit the battlefield, and they can store more energy when idle for long periods of time. All "Specialists units" use energy: such as the medic, ghost, spectre, thor, wraith, banshee, raven, science vessel and battlecruiser.

Campaign Acquisition
Acquired from Hyperion laboratory for 20 zerg research points

Damaged mechanical units recover hit points when out of combat, at a rate of 0.6015 each second.[20]

Our ship and vehicle hulls are now made from a material called Regenerative Bio-Steel. This material uses internal nanobots to slowly repair any damage the hull sustains. While this regeneration process is much slower than conventional SCV repairs, it can be the difference between life and death if no SCVs are available.

Campaign Acquisition
Acquired from Hyperion laboratory for 20 zerg research points

Nova Covert OpsEdit

Ravens are available for use by Nova starting mission Night Terrors. They have the option to substitute seeker missiles for spider mines, and substitutes bio-mechanical repair drones for point defense drones.[11]

Abilities and UpgradesEdit
AutoTurret SC2 UseAble1 Auto-Turret

Creates an auto-turret to attack enemies.

Hotkey T
Cost 50 Energy Terran SC1
Duration 30Time SC2 Game1
PointDefDrone SC2 Icon Bio-Mechanical Repair Drone

Creates an automated aerial drone that seeks out and heals damaged allied units.

Hotkey D
Cost 50 Energy Terran SC1
Duration 30Time SC2 Game1
SpiderMinesSiegeTank SC2-NCO Icon1 Spider Mines

Creates three spider mines at designated point.

Hotkey R
Cost 50 Energy Terran SC1
MagrailMunitions Cov Ops Icon Magrail Munitions

Upgrades raven's auto-turrets to railgun turrets. Railgun turrets deal 30 area-of-effect damage in a line at a rate of fire of 2.

Campaign Acquisition
Acquired from Destroy the Eradicators in "Night Terrors."
InternalTech SC2-NCO Icon1 Internal Tech Module

Unit no longer needs an attached tech lab to be built by production facilities.


Co-op missionsEdit

Nova gains access to the advanced Raven Type-II in Co-op Missions, with enhanced health and abilities.

Patch 1.5 Test ChangesEdit

Main article: Call to Action

The Raven received changes during the Call to Action playtest. In August 2012, acceleration increased from 2 to 2.25 and speed increased from 2.25 to 2.5. This was done to improve the micro.[21] In November 2012, the Seeker Missile no longer required an upgrade.[22]


See: StarCraft II Raven Quotations


Beep beep boom Beep, Beep, Boom!

10 Achievement SC2 Game1


Destroy 6 units with a single Seeker Missile in a League game.

CantTouchThis SC2 Icon1 Can't Touch This!

10 Achievement SC2 Game1


Dodge a Raven Seeker Missile in a Melee game.

Heroes of the StormEdit

Heroes DevLog2

The following section contains information from Heroes of the Storm and is not canon to StarCraft continuity

Ravens appear as mercenary units on the map Braxis Holdout in Heroes of the Storm.[23]

Known VariantsEdit


Raven SC2 Head1

Raven's profile

  • If one looks at the unit portrait in the map editor, one can find that on the back side of some of the monitors there are unit ability icons such as cloaking, lockdown, lift off, load, Hercules dropship's rapid deployment and an unknown icon. There is even the "unload" command icon behind the machine in front of the user.
  • There is an animation where all the monitors explode and the pilot facepalms.
  • The pilot has his face angled away from the camera as shown in the photo below, but if seen from the front in the game files he has a generic face with wrinkles and a microphone. He sits with his mouth open. In some regards he can be viewed as a "gamer" because of some of his actions.
  • In the unit portrait, a close look at the screens shows what looks like a message from Arcturus Mengsk (there is a picture of his face and some text).
  • The name of the Corvid Reactor upgrade is a possible reference to the biological family of corvids, which includes ravens and several other birds.


  1. It is true, if you can get close enough with the Raven (previously known as the Nighthawk), the Hunter-Seeker Missile(HSM) is likely to do some major damage. Nonetheless, a zerg opponent should have an ample amount of time to react to it, and the HSM has a slight delay launch when it comes out from the Raven. Additionally, there will be a visual that will show exactly which unit is being targeted by the HSM, allowing the possibility of more micro by the zerg player to limit the damage taken. Nighthawk+HSM vs Mutalisk. StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2009-05-26.
  2. 2009-04-08. StarCraft 2 - All units. GaneStar. Accessed on 2009-04-09.
  3. As another update that you guys will get at BlizzCon, the Vulkans are now updated as the 'Nighthawks' in the BlizzCon build. They have updated art to reflect this as well. Those going to BlizzCon, make note of the cool new movement animations added to several Terran air units. Karune. 2008-10-08. New Lurker and Vulcan Art. StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-10-08.
  4. Speaking of the Nomad, it has actually gotten it's new art update, and a name update as well. It is now known as the Vulkan, and will be resigning down chaos at your expansions with its Auto Turrets. Karune. 2008-09-08. Ideas for NOMAD. StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-09-08.
  5. Nomads, also now known as the Vulkan, is still a detector. Actually, it is probably the most powerful mobile detector in the game, considering it can also rapidly deploy a medley of Terran defenses used to both support an attack or raid the enemy. Karune 2008-09-17. Karune: do comsats still require much energy? StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2008-09-17.
  6. Browder, Dustin. (Cavez) 2007-12-19. Nomad question. StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed 2007-12-19.
  7. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II Map Editor. (Activision Blizzard) (in English). July 27, 2010
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 2014-10-10, Raven Science. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2014-10-21
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 Game Units: Raven. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2010-08-10
  10. 10.0 10.1 Barba, Rick. StarCraft Field Manual (hardcover). Insight Editions, November 17, 2015.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Mission: Nova Covert Ops, Night Terrors (in English). 2016-08-02.
  12. Bogdanove, Kal-El. "The Fightin' SceeVees." (May 30, 2013). Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft Lore: The Fightin' SceeVees. Accessed 2013-05-30
  13. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Mission: Sky Shield. (in English). November 10, 2015
  14. 2015-10-02, Legacy of the Void Beta Balance Update -- October 2, 2015. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2015-10-03
  15. Chat with Karune about the Screenshots StarCraft II General Discussion Forum. Accessed November 12, 2007
  16. 16.0 16.1 Nethaera. 2010-05-06. Patch Notes - Beta Patch 11. StarCraft II General Beta Forum. Accessed 2010-05-06.
  17. 2016-02-23, StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void 3.1.3 Patch Notes. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2016-03-03
  18. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty - Patch 1.4.0. Accessed 2011-09-20.
  19. 19.0 19.1 19.2 Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Protoss research (in English). 2010.
  20. 20.0 20.1 Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty. (Activision Blizzard). PC. Zerg research (in English). 2010.
  21. Blizzard Entertainment. 2012-08-08. Call to Action: Balance Testing. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2012-08-09.
  22. Blizzard Entertainment. 2012-11-30. Call to Action: November 30 Balance Testing. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2012-11-30.
  23. Blizzard Entertainment. Heroes of the Storm (Blizzard Entertainment) (in English). June 2, 2015

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