The following section contains information from a previous version of Heart of the Swarm which is no longer valid.

The mothership core is a unit in StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm which has undergone much development.

The mothership core was created to solve the problem of multiplayer protoss vs. protoss games, said games rarely going to mid-late game due to the warp-in abilities negating the defender's advantage. Its Photon Overcharge ability is a counter to this,[1] along with countering zerg rush techniques.[2] It is also intended that its Recall abilities will allow protoss players to be more aggressive.[3]

Heart of the Swarm beta files indicate that the mothership core was called the "warp ship" during development.[4]

MothershipCore HotS Rend1

The mothership core during development.

Prior to the beta test, the mothership core was immobile, remaining atop the nexus.[5]


The mothership core teleports to another nexus.[6]

Hotkey T[5]
Cost 25[7] Energy Terran SC1

Prior to beta patch 4 the mothership core could fire its weapon on the move; after patch 4, the mothership core could attach itself to a nexus, and only then was it able to fire a weapon.[8] In patch 5 this ability became a simple nexus buff.[9]

The Energize ability was removed during the beta.[10]


The mothership core recharges a unit's energy to full.[11]

Hotkey E[12]
Cost 100[11] Energy Terran SC1

In beta patch #8, the mothership core was no longer massive.[13]

Previously immobile, the mothership core became a mobile unit during the beta test.[14][15] It can attack while on the move.[11]

The mothership core's Envision ability was moved to the oracle in January 2013.[16]

Legacy of the VoidEdit

The energy cost of mass recall for both motherships and mothership cores was decreased in Legacy of the Void. The developers noted that protoss struggled in base defense, so the cost was reduced, making it easier to defend multiple bases, and to play more aggressively in the early/mid stages of the game.[17]

The core removed from multiplayer in Patch 4.0, its role transferred to the nexus itself. This was done in a bid to simplify protoss base defenses by concentrating defensive power in the nexus itself rather than a specialized unit that moves between them.[18]


  1. June, 2012, Starcraft 2: Heart of the Swarm "New Units" Explained by David Kim. G4, accessed on 2012-06-21
  2. June, 2012, Starcraft 2: Heart of the Swarm "New Units" Gameplay Preview With Sam Didier. G4, accessed on 2012-06-21
  3. 2012-06-11, Dustin Browder gives Slasher the scoop on Heart of the Swarm. YouTube, accessed on 2012-06-21
  4. Blizzard Entertainment. Heart of the Swarm beta Map Editor. (Activision Blizzard) (in English). September 4, 2012
  5. 5.0 5.1 Blizzard Entertainment. 2012-06-08. Heart of the Swarm Update - New Videos (StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm - Battle Report (Protoss vs Zerg)). Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2012-06-08.
  6. Blizzard Entertainment, Teamliquid. 2012-06-09. Heart of the Swarm Update. Blizzard Entertainment. Accessed 2012-06-09.
  7. KDraconis. 2012-06-08. Heart of the Swarm Unit Stats. StarCraft Legacy. Accessed 2012-06-09.
  8. Xordiah. 2012-9-29. (9/29/2012) Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion. Accessed 2012-10-20.
  9. Xordiah. 2012-10-6. (10/6/2012) Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion. Accessed 2012-10-20.
  10. Cloaken. 2012-10-12. Balance Update #6 (10/12/2012) Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion. Accessed 2012-10-12.
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Raiderrobert. 2012-09-05. Summary of HOTS Changes. Reddit. Accessed 2012-09-09.
  12. Cloaken. 2012-09-07. Balance Update #1 (9/7/2012). Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion Forum. Accessed 2012-09-08.
  13. Kaivax. 2012-12-05. Beta Balance Update #8 – December 5, 2012. Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion Accessed 2012-12-05.
  14. HuskyStarCraft. 2012-09-04. Heart of the Swarm - Protoss - Game 1 - Beta Gameplay. Youtube. Accessed 2012-09-05.
  15. Blizzard Entertainment. StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm beta. (Activision Blizzard) (in English). 2012.
  16. Spyrian. 2013-01-09. Beta Balance Update #11 – January 9, 2013. Heart of the Swarm Beta Discussion Accessed 2013-01-10.
  17. 2015-05-11, Legacy of the Void Beta: Balance Update Preview - May 11. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2015-05-21
  18. 2017-08-17, StarCraft II Multiplayer - Major Design Changes. Blizzard Entertainment, accessed on 2017-08-20
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