import com.arcrobotics.ftclib.command.Command

Commands are simple state machines that perform high-level robot functions using the methods defined by subsystems. Commands can be either idle, in which they do nothing, or scheduled, in which the scheduler will execute a specific set of the command’s code depending on the state of the command. The CommandScheduler recognizes scheduled commands as being in one of three states: initializing, executing, or ending. Commands specify what is done in each of these states through the initialize(), execute() and end() methods. Commands are represented in the command-based library by the Command interface.

Creating Commands

Similarly to subsystems, the recommended method for most users to create a command is to subclass the abstract CommandBase class, as seen in the command-based template.

import com.arcrobotics.ftclib.command.CommandBase;

 * An example command that uses an example subsystem.
public class ExampleCommand extends CommandBase {
  @SuppressWarnings({"PMD.UnusedPrivateField", "PMD.SingularField"})
  private final ExampleSubsystem m_subsystem;

   * Creates a new ExampleCommand.
   * @param subsystem The subsystem used by this command.
  public ExampleCommand(ExampleSubsystem subsystem) {
    m_subsystem = subsystem;
    // Use addRequirements() here to declare subsystem dependencies.

As before, this contains several convenience features. It automatically overrides the getRequirements() method for users, returning a list of requirements that is empty by default, but can be added to with the addRequirements() method.

Also as before, advanced users seeking more flexibility are free to simply create their own class implementing the Command interface.

To schedule a command to the scheduler, you will need to call the schedule() method of the command instance.


The Structure of a Command

While subsystems are fairly freeform, and may generally look like whatever the user wishes them to, commands are quite a bit more constrained. Command code must specify what the command will do in each of its possible states. This is done by overriding the initialize(), execute(), and end() methods. Additionally, a command must be able to tell the scheduler when (if ever) it has finished execution - this is done by overriding the isFinished() method. All of these methods are defaulted to reduce clutter in user code: initialize(), execute(), and end() are defaulted to simply do nothing, while isFinished() is defaulted to return false (resulting in a command that never ends).


The initialize() method is run exactly once per time a command is scheduled, as part of the scheduler’s schedule() method. The scheduler’s run() method does not need to be called for the initialize() method to run. The initialize block should be used to place the command in a known starting state for execution. It is also useful for performing tasks that only need to be performed once per time scheduled, such as setting motors to run at a constant speed.


The execute() method is called repeatedly while the command is scheduled, whenever the scheduler’s run() method is called. The execute block should be used for any task that needs to be done continually while the command is scheduled, such as updating motor outputs to match joystick inputs, or using the output of a control loop.


The end() method is called once when the command ends, whether it finishes normally (i.e. isFinished() returned true) or it was interrupted (either by another command or by being explicitly canceled). The method argument specifies the manner in which the command ended; users can use this to differentiate the behavior of their command end accordingly. The end block should be used to “wrap up” command state in a neat way, such as setting motors back to zero or reverting a solenoid actuator to a “default” state.

Specifying End Conditions

The isFinished() method is called repeatedly while the command is scheduled, whenever the scheduler’s run() method is called. As soon as it returns true, the command’s end() method is called and it is unscheduled. The isFinished() method is called after the execute() method, so the command will execute once on the same iteration that it is unscheduled.

Simple Command Example

Taking the gripper example from the Subsystem page, we can develop the following action to grab a stone from the quarry:

import com.arcrobotics.ftclib.command.CommandBase;

 * A simple command that grabs a stone with the
 * {@link GripperSubsystem}.  Written explicitly for
 * pedagogical purposes. Actual code should inline a
 * command this simple with {@link
 * com.arcrobotics.ftclib.command.InstantCommand}.
public class GrabStone extends CommandBase {

    // The subsystem the command runs on
    private final GripperSubsystem m_gripperSubsystem;

    public GrabStone(GripperSubsystem subsystem) {
        m_gripperSubsystem = subsystem;

    public void initialize() {

    public boolean isFinished() {
        return true;


Notice that, here, the gripper subsystem is passed into the constructor in order to produce the command action. This is called dependency injection, and allows users to avoid declaring their subsystems as global variables. This is widely accepted as a best-practice.

Notice also that the above command calls the subsystem method once from initialize, and then immediately ends (as isFinished() simply returns true).

Below is a more complex example of a custom command.

import com.arcrobotics.ftclib.command.CommandBase;

import java.util.function.DoubleSupplier;

 * A command to drive the robot with joystick input
 * (passed in as {@link DoubleSupplier}s). Written
 * explicitly for pedagogical purposes.
public class DefaultDrive extends CommandBase {

    private final DriveSubsystem m_drive;
    private final DoubleSupplier m_forward;
    private final DoubleSupplier m_rotation;

     * Creates a new DefaultDrive.
     * @param subsystem The drive subsystem this command will run on.
     * @param forward The control input for driving forwards/backwards
     * @param rotation The control input for turning
    public DefaultDrive(DriveSubsystem subsystem,
        DoubleSupplier forward, DoubleSupplier rotation) {
        m_drive = subsystem;
        m_forward = forward;
        m_rotation = rotation;

    public void execute() {


Notice that this command does not override isFinished(), and thus will never end.

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