Agents of STRIKE
Product of Science
Experiments, lab accidents, and special projects have produced a variety of extranormal individuals over the decades.
Super-Soldier programs have a long history in this setting. Beginning in earnest during World War II, for a period of time during the Cold War every major military power was trying to develop their own Super-Soldiers. Most were trying to model their results on Captain America, and most were also horrific failures.
Most Super-Soldiers share a similar suite of powers, making them stronger, faster, tougher than is physically possible for a normal human. Super-Soldiers often, but not always, have incredible regenerative capabilities and as a result have extended life-spans (some are possibly immune to aging), so a Super-Soldier could theoretically be from almost any period or project in history.
With the exception of Steve Rogers, most Super-Soldier programs have ended as failures. They created people who might have superhuman abilities, but are also monstrous, fundamentally broken in some fashion, or difficult to control (even for themselves).
Known Super-Soldier programs include:
Project: Rebirth – The original Super-Soldier program and the most successful in terms of the fact that it created Captain America, a little known fact is that Steve Rogers was not the only test subject in Project: Rebirth… just the only one considered a true success. There were other test subjects in Project: Rebirth who were, according to SSR records, terminated when they exhibited abnormal mutations and responses to the procedure.
Ubermensch – The Nazi Super-Soldier program created by Arnim Zola during World War II produced the Red Skull. While historical records indicate Red Skull himself shut the program down before any other Nazi Super-Soldiers were created, it’s possible that Zola may have continued his work without Skull’s knowledge or consent. Such an individual, if they existed, would be a relic of World War II as old as Captain America… and possibly with some fairly questionable morality.
MK-HOMEGROWN – A successor to Project: Rebirth started by the CIA in the 1960’s, MK-HOMEGROWN was a disaster. While it did produce Super-Soldiers (who unknown to the American public, fought in the Vietnam War and were used against the Winter Soldiers), the Super-Soldiers created by MK-HOMEGROWN were mentally unstable and sometimes had unpredictable abilities. The project’s Super-Soldiers were either terminated as critical risks, or imprisoned to undergo long-term psychiatric treatment.
The Winter Soldiers – Leviathan’s first attempt at a Super-Soldier program, created by Dr. Wladyslav Shinski. The Winter Soldiers were extremely successful, and a force to be reckoned with during the Cold War, but they were also mentally unstable and difficult for Leviathan to control. One of them, Alexi Shostakov, defected to SHIELD in the 1980’s. There is only one known Winter Soldier still in operation today for Leviathan (often called the Winter Soldier), any of the rest are likely executed or imprisoned. But some might still be at large…
Black Widows – The Black Widows were Leviathan’s second attempt at a Super-Soldier program. Raised from childhood with loyalty to Mother Russia (and Leviathan), this all-female Super-Soldier program produced women such as Yelena Belova (now calling herself Tsarina) and Natasha Romanov, known publicly as the Black Widow. Black Widows didn’t actually receive their Super-Soldier treatment until after puberty, so women like Natasha who defected to the United States while still a child are not, technically, Super-Soldiers. There may be other Black Widows still out there who fled Russia when the USSR fell, some of whom did undergo the treatments and are true Super-Soldiers.
Project G – Originally started by Dr. Bruce Banner, Project G attempted to create Super-Soldiers for the US Army using a combination of gene therapy and exposure to intense amounts of Gamma radiation. This project turned Dr. Banner into the Hulk, but unknown to most it also affected other people involved in the project and may have created other Gamma-irradiated superhumans.
Weapon Plus – Very little is known about Weapon Plus, the Canadian Super-Soldier program created by Department H in the 1980’s or 90’s (it’s unclear which). It is not known if the program is still in operation, although many of Department H’s elite “Alpha Flight” team are thought to be parts of the program.
The Queensguard Program – Britain’s Super-Soldier program, overseen by MI-13, has actually been somewhat successful according to intelligence that MI-13 chooses to share with SHIELD. Agents such as Captain Britain, Union Jack, and Lionheart have operated covertly for decades. MI-13 is loath to share secrets about the Queensguard with SHIELD, but it is theoretically possible an agent on loan from MI-13 might be such a Super-Soldier.
People’s Defense Force – China’s attempt at a Super-Soldier program was an unmitigated disaster, producing irradiated monsters and lunatics. Officially, China has hunted down and terminated every creation of the program and shut it down. It’s possible that one of them may have survived, and defect to SHIELD for help.
The Goblin Serum – OsCorp developed their own Super-Soldier treatment, which they created as a defense contractor. The only known human test subject is OsCorp’s former CEO, Norman Osborn, who became the costumed super-criminal the Green Goblin. It is possible that others might have been secret test subjects before Osborn subjected himself to the serum, or the serum might have fallen into other hands.
Suggested Origins: The Accident, I’m a Freak, The Beast Inside Me, The Deal, What I Carry
Suggested Drives: Adapt to a Changing World, Figure Out Who I Am, Protect, Start Anew
Example Characters: Captain America, Union Jack, Guardian, Captain Britain, Red Skull, Luke Cage
Some extranormal individuals were irrevocably changed because of lab accidents, dangerous research projects, or exploration of poorly understood forces.
These actions were not necessarily trying to create a superhuman (unlike Super-Soldier projects), but were instead pushing the boundaries of knowledge and scientific understanding.
Some of the projects, corporations, undertakings, and factions that may be responsible for people fundamentally altered by fringe science include:
The Future Foundation/The Negative Zone: Reed Richards’ ill-fated exploration of the extradimensional Negative Zone had dramatic consequences for him and his team. The strange properties of the Zone changed them and granted them superhuman powers. While Richards shut down the Future Foundation’s exploration of the Zone with manned missions, another (less ethical or cautious) organization might have tried to follow in his footsteps, or renegade scientists for the Foundation may have entered the Zone against his wishes. Such individuals might have found themselves as altered by the experience as the Fantastic Four.
Alchemax: Alchemax has yet to actually create any viable Super-Soldier candidates as a defense contractor, but perhaps they have made a secret breakthrough (or errant failure) that the rest of the world doesn’t know about yet. Some of their other, less overtly militaristic attempts at human augmentation through genetic alteration might have also created unusual results.
Roxxon Industries: The sinister global energy company Roxxon isn’t necessarily in the business of trying to create super-humans, but they have tendrils in many fields and it’s possible some Roxxon facility, intentionally or unintentionally, messed with science they really shouldn’t have.
OsCorp: On top of their Super-Soldier program that led to the development of the Goblin Serum, OsCorp used to develop all kinds of genetics engineering programs, largely involving modifying the DNA of animals, insects, and arachnids. Some of their research staff or other individuals may have found themselves altered by these experiments.
Project G: While ostensibly a Super-Soldier, the so-called “gamma freaks” produced by Project G are more examples of science gone awry, and the abilities they have are less similar to Captain America or Guardian than it is to the Hulk.
Private Research: A variety of one-off, private research experiments may have resulted in the creation of super-humans in some capacity. Your character may have even done this to themselves, possibly unintentionally.
Suggested Origins: The Accident, I’m a Freak, The Beast Inside Me, What I Carry, What I Know
Suggested Drives: Create, Figure Out Who I Am, Push the Boundaries of Science, Start Anew
Example Characters: The Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, the Hulk, Graviton