2 Base Carrier (vs. Terran)

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[e][h]Protoss Two Base Carrier
Strategy Information
Mid Game Strategy


The "Two Base Carrier" is a riskier Build Order vs. Terran and is related to the Two Base Arbiter strategy. It enables a Protoss player to train Carriers early in the mid-game, while risking to lose against a stronger timed attack by Terran, due to the lack of an own ground army. If the strategy is scouted early in modern Protoss vs. Terran, the likelihood to lose the game is relatively high.

Build Order[edit]

In contrast to the Two Base Arbiter Build, the Two Base Carrier strategy does not only need an earlier second Assimilator, but also more harvested minerals. It is therefore usually used after expanding to the Natural Expansion early on. There is no real Build Order, rather than a vague scheme of how to transition into a Carrier Tech.

Basic Build
  • Fast Expansion Build
  • Early second Assimilator
  • two Gateways in total
  • Robotics Facility
  • Stargate
  • +1 Air Weapons
  • Fleat Beacon and second Stargate
  • Adding Gateways for a total of four to six after Carrier Production started
  • Interceptor Upgrade


Similar to the logic of Two Base Arbiters, Protoss sacrifices a larger army for stronger tech units. Consequently, Terran will have the opportunity to commit to a strong attack in the early mid game, trying to hard counter the tech of Protoss. Even with two Carriers being trained, Protoss will have a harder time to defeat an early attack, as Carriers in smaller numbers only slowly kill units and buildings.

Trying to hide the Stargates as long as possible is key for Protoss, as this lowers the chances of Terran moving out of his base early on. If Terran moves out, Protoss should try to stall the push, while not losing much units to buy time for the Carriers to finish.

Once the Carriers are out, the Terran should be attacked immediately. The goal is to bind Terran to his base and forcing him to stay passive for the rest of the game. The Protoss ground army either defends against attacks or is used to contain Terran, while Protoss takes a third and more bases when he has the money to do so.


The greatest danger for Protoss is a strong mid game attack of four or six Factories. Having an Observer scouting the Factory count helps to anticipate such an attack.

Cloaked Wraiths can be used to kill Carriers without Observers. The greater the Carrier fleet, the smaller the risk factor is.

A Two Base Carrier strategy punishes a very greedy playing Terran. If Terran takes an early third expansion, the Carriers are of great use to harass expansions.

Notable Maps[edit]

Maps with difficult pathing, many cliffs or unaccessible terrain support a Carrier strategy. Examples would be

Maps with a wide open center and short pathes generally support Terran vs. Carriers.



Strategy Example Game
Aztec South Korea  Tempest Example of the BO. The defensive use of the carriers as push breakers (sniping tanks) is amazing, however there is almost no pressure from Tempest, allowing Fantasy to out-expand and shut down Tempest's much needed expansions.
South Korea  Fantasy
Date: 2011-01-08
Patch: Shinhan 2011 Winners League VOD