North Star Heroes
History of Superheroes
This is the history that most Superheroes know about because of what is well documented by the media or because many Superheroes have access to government files that provide more details.
The Eras of “Masked” Heroes and Villains
There have been “masked” heroes, villains, secret societies and powerful beings that have roamed the Earth for tens of thousands of years. Most of their names have been lost to antiquity. There are always rumors about ancient societies, heroes and villains who have existed for thousands of years.
Prior to 1900 C.E.
There were a number of “masked” heroes and villains prior to 1900 C.E. Some modern heroes trace their lineage to people who used the names that the modern heroes use today.
There were few costumed heroes between the turn of the century and the 1920s.
In the summer of 1938, as Hitler planned the conquest of Europe, his Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels was secretly assembling a team of powerful mystics, the Reichsamt für die Sicherung völkischer Kulturgüter (Reich’s Office for the Safety and Security of National Cultural Items, or RSvKg), led by the mysterious Erich Hessler. Seeking a magical weapon to use against Germany’s enemies before her armies commenced their march across Europe, the sorcerers gathered in a mountain redoubt on May 1st and performed several powerful occult rituals. But their spells did not have the outcome they expected. Instead of leading them to artifacts that would satisfy their masters, the arcane energies they released somehow enhanced, or perhaps unleashed, the latent magic underlying all reality — thus making the creation of true superhumans possible.
The early 1950s saw little in the way of superhuman activity, though Scarlet Archer and Black Mask remained active and Captain Patriot regularly appeared in public as an associate of Senator Joseph McCarthy. When Dr. Twilight’s true identity and former Communist party connections were revealed, the DOJ and superheroes in general were disgraced publicly. By the time McCarthy himself was finally discredited, the first generation of heroes had largely retired or gone underground.
The 1960’s was a time when supervillains and villainous agencies began to appear world wide. These supervillains and villainous agencies were intent on more than just petty thefts, they intended to take over nations and the world.
One of the most frightening events is when the computer intelligence Ultivac tried to take over the world by seizing control of the nuclear missile launch codes which were controlled by the USA and USSR. in 1961. Ultivac was thwarted by an unlikely team-up of heroes who chose to remain together as The Sentinels. The original lineup, which stayed together until 1965, included MeteorMan and Rocketman, as well as Microman (a brilliant physicist who developed the Shrinking Ray), Dr. Phantom (a brilliant scientist who invented a dimensional phasing device), and Beowulf (the legendary warrior-king). This team seized the popular imagination like none before, and its members became international celebrities.
Many superheroes and villains were also caught up in the social and political turbulence that manifested in the USA during the 1960’s.
As the Sixties ended, a new generation of heroes came to the fore. A number of heroes retired during this time.
In 1972, the active members of the Sentinels traveled to the other side of the galaxy when they were caught up in an intergalactic war, and were believed dead for several months.
In 1974, two separate scandals of Watergate and UNTIL scandal, where an UNTIL agent stole US nuclear program information and sold it to the USSR.
On March 5th 1974, the most feared supervillain in world history Dr. Destroyer made his first appearance. Dr. Destroyer and his minions attempted to conquer California as a prelude to conquering the world. Many superhero teams and individuals fought with with Destroyer and his minions near San Francisco. After the battle was over, Dr. Destroyer and his minions had fled, and dozens of superheroes were either dead or severely injured.
Other villains committed some of the most spectacular supercrimes ever committed, including the looting of the Antwerp diamond exchange, the cruise ship Windward, and the Slug’s almost successful attempt to transform all the citizens of New York into Elder Worms, took place during this period.
The United States began the construction of Stronghold, the world’s first prison designed solely to house superpowered inmates. Built onto and into an isolated mesa in the New Mexico desert, Stronghold began accepting prisoners in mid-1978.
The Eighties brought a new explosion of superheroes — the largest yet — onto the scene, as if in answer to the villainy in the previous decade. The early years of the decade saw the debut of several new solo vigilantes, such as the sword-wielding Crusader in New York City and Brainwave in San Francisco.
But evil never rests, and as the 1980s wore on several of the most dire super-menaces threatening the world today launched their first schemes. In 1985, Mechanon appeared, nearly destroying all life on Earth before the Sentinels managed to defeat it. A bizarre accident in 1986 led to the creation of the fearsome Grond, who has since caused billions of dollars of property damage around the world. Eurostar, considered by some the most dangerous supervillain team in the world, got its start in 1988. And perhaps worst of all, in 1987, Takofanes the Undying Lord, a terrifyingly powerful undead supermage, first appeared, cutting a swath of destruction across the eastern United States.
The decade of the Nineties got off to a rocky start when a flu epidemic and a freak thunderstorm combined to leave Stronghold vulnerable to a major escape effort by the inmates. Nearly four dozen hardened supervillains escaping.
The Superhuman World — and indeed, all of humanity — was rocked by tragedy in 1992, when Dr. Destroyer attempted to conquer the United States from a secret facility in Detroit. With the world’s superheroes arrayed against him, and defeat seeming inevitable, Destroyer triggered a suicide device that killed him, several superheroes, and tens of thousands of people, and razed the city.
Millennium City was built on the ruins of Detroit. The effort took almost the entire decade to accomplish.
Before Millennium City was completely built, the world had to respond to another threat as great as Dr. Destroyer: Istvatha V’han, the so-called “Empress of a Billion Dimensions,” who sought to add Earth’s reality to her growing empire. A great battle between Istvatha V’han’s forces and Earth’s superheroes and large number of supervillains banded together to fight her forces. After nearly two months of desperate, sometimes bloody, fighting, Earth’s heroes drove her back into her own territory.
Around the country, new heroes and villains have emerged to take the place of ones slain.
The twenty-first century began optimistically in the Superhuman World. Millennium City was completed, a bright, glittering, high-tech city that seemed to represent the best of what humanity could offer, and could expect from the future. In 2001 the hero Defender founded the city’s first superteam, the Champions, who have since gone on to become one of the most popular and powerful hero teams in the world.
But nothing good lasts forever. On September 30, 2002, the most feared supervillain in the world — Dr. Destroyer — returned, seemingly from the dead. The Destroyer again tried to take over the world. This time he attacked both Indonesia and South India in order gain some mystic power. In August of 2006 he launched Destruga II, his second artificial island headquarters, in an effort to take control of every mind in the world. Only the combined might of five superhero teams, UNTIL and the American and Australian militaries were enough to stop him.
Mechanon continued its efforts to rid Earth of all organic life. The undead sorcerer Takofanes attacked Millennium city with 15 superheroes he raised from the dead.
July 2009 Stronghold experienced the second major breakout in its history, which released Menton and dozens of other supervillains. There are five dozen inmates who are still on the loose. In early September 2009, the Qularr launched a major invasion of Earth. A desperate attack by the Champions on the mothership hovering over Millennium City seriously blunted the invasion, allowing Earth’s heroes to oppose the bug-men.
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