TvZ 14CC into early third CC with a twist of Taeja


INnoVation was destroying every Zerg in 2013 with Command Centre first into an early third, but it has gone out of style in recent months. Taeja has added his own flavor in this classic TvZ build.


Let’s use the building block method to explain this.


I’m not writing the build order out explicitly as the building block image is good enough to show how it looks like (I’m lazy~).

This build is probably the second most greedy build there is in TvZ. The most greedy one, which is quite alike, goes for a Command Centre first into a Barracks then third Command Centre immediately without taking gas.

This build goes for an early third Command Centre and controls the map with Hellions. Subsequently, you move out at 11:00 with bio, Hellions and Medivac (Stim, Combat Shield and +1/+1 completed). What I am going to show below is based on this core structure, but with minor changes.

7 Barracks

Taeja did this against Curious in Ro32 GSL Code S few days ago.

Similar to most standard TvZ builds, a three Command Centre build adds Barracks at three different stages. The first convergent point is 3 Barracks, then the second is 5, then the third is 8 (look at the image above). What Taeja did in this game does not follow this order strictly.

Everything is similar to the core 3CC build up till he put down his 4th and 5th Barracks. Taeja changes it up from here. Instead of putting down the second Factory (with Tech Lab), he built two more Barracks. This makes the total number of Barracks to seven. The second convergent point (refer to above image) is changed from

– 5x Barracks
– 2x Factory
– 1x Starport


– 7x Barracks
– 1x Factory
– 1x Starport

The additional Barracks gives Taeja more bio than the standard build order during the second convergent point production time frame. Taeja made use of that and trampled through the Zerg with superior army supply.

This build is not easy to execute. It requires great mechanics to squeeze that two Barracks into the build order and out-produce your opponent. Curious seems to have under-prepared for the unusual high amount of bio at that point, and that basically lost him the game. Ideally, this build kills Zerg in the small time frame whereby Terran just have more.

This build works well in maps that allow the bio to form a concave to attack the third (e.g., Merry go round). Taeja also mixed in Marauder for the push. If it did not work out as well as planned, just add the additional buildings (1 Factory and 1 Barracks) to reach the next convergent point.

Early Starport

Against Life in Blizzcon 2014 game 1, Taeja built an early Starport after he built a third Command Centre with the standard build.

This is quite different from the core 3CC build order.

Build order

10 – Suppy Depot
14 – Command Centre
15 – Barracks
16 – Refinery
@100% Barracks – Marine and 2x Orbital Command. (usually get a Bunker after the Command Centre completes)
@100 gas – Factory
@50 gas – Reactor on Barracks
@400 mineral – Command Centre
28 – Supply Depot

Build Supply Depot accordingly here after

This is the same as the standard build up till here.

@100% Factory – Swap Factory onto Reactor for Hellions (5 production cycle). Tech Lab on Barracks (@100% – Stim). Starport.
@75 mineral – Refinery
@100% Starport – Viking
@250 mineral – 2x Engineering Bay (@100% – +1/+1 upgrade)
@100% Viking – Reactor on Starport. 2x Barracks.
@150 mineral – 2x Refinery
@100% 2x Barracks – Swap them onto the two Reactors which are attached to Factory and Starport. Both Factory and Starport build Reactors again.
@300 mineral – 2x Barracks
@50% +1/+1 upgrade – Armory
@100% Reactors – Medivac
@100 gas – Factory

The build order basically ends here. At this point, it reaches the standard convergent point of
– 5x Barracks
– 2x Factory
– 1x Starport

The interesting part is the early Starport to produce a single Viking. There are other TvZ builds that get a Viking to clear Overlords, and line up for a 2x Medivac drop. But such builds do not get such an early third Command Centre. This build utilises the Starport to build the Reactor when the 2nd and 3rd Barracks are built, while the standard build uses the Factory. In line with this difference, the Factory continues to produce Hellion and makes 10 Hellions instead of the usual 6.

Although the build order is different, the 11:00 timing remains the same. However, Taeja did not move out to clear creep at 11:00. He directly drops two Medivacs of bio at Life’s natural. This is a very important difference. The early Viking, which clears Overlords, prevents Zerg from spotting the incoming drop. The moves are well synced. This explains why Taeja did this on Nimbus, as it has a more drop-favored natural.

11 thoughts on “TvZ 14CC into early third CC with a twist of Taeja

  1. Thank you for another great post! These posts rising more and more another question fmpov: When do I do an upgrade in the first place? At what number of (which) units it is useful?

        1. Depends on build. In general, it’s not about the number of units, but the number of bases you have. It’s not worthy to get such upgrades if you’re on one base.

          Read these. Just a general guide on whether you should get upgrade. If you play a macro game, you have to get it. Of course, if you’ve a plan to skip upgrade and kill the opponent, it’s fine too.

          1. I really know and enjoy these mentioned posts. But the question remain: “It’s not worthy to get such upgrades if you’re on one base.” Why exactly? There must be a (dps or number) reason or break even point fmpov tha is more “calculable”.

            1. I don’t have any number on that, and I’m not sure if there’s any available. I will explain it by logic (although you may already understand it),

              Upgrade takes time. A one base attack has a timer on it. So these two don’t go well together. Way back in WoL, there’s a one base three barracks stim build against Protoss. You basically attack when you have stim and 1A to victory. Everyone gets better by now, a one base “frontal attack” with upgrade usually doesn’t work. Upgrade takes time, and it allows the defending player to prepare for it.

              In terms of number, it also has the return in investment issue. But like what you said, there might be a “number” to the threshold of what’s worthy or not.

  2. I just started my own terran blog you can find it at I daresay my blog is so much better than yours with lots of quality posts on the current state of balance. Don’t be surprised if in a few days my blog is more popular than yours.

  3. Cure did a cool variation of the 7 rax twist. The build varies in that it gets out a defensive banshee and he only produces hellbats instead of mines.
    Heres a VOD:

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s