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Spaceknights
MEMBERS: Rom, Starshine (I), Terminator, Firefall (I), Mentus, Hammerhead, Javelin, Astra, Trapper, Breaker, Unseen, Seeker, Scanner, Pulsar, Rainbow, Gloriole, Starshine (II), Lightningbolt, Heatwave, Dominor
BASE OF OPERATIONS: Universal
FIRST APPEARANCE: Rom #1 (1979)

HISTORY: The Spaceknights are an elite corps of cyborg warriors created by the humanoids of the planet Galador to battle the Dire Wraiths

About two hundred years ago, the Dire Wraiths destroyed a fleet of Galadorian starships entering the so-called Dark Nebula. A Dire Wraith war fleet prepared to invade Galador itself. The Prime Director of Galador asked the general populace of the planet for volunteers to give up their humanoid bodies and undergo surgical conversion into an army of cyborg warriors called Spaceknights, who would be adapted for the rigors of combat in outer space. The first to volunteer was a man named Rom. who became the greatest and most heroic of the Spaceknights. Millions volunteered, but only a few hundred were accepted and underwent conversion. Each accepted volunteer underwent surgery in which much of his or her body, including his or her brain, was transplanted into a computerized exoskeleton ("armor") onto which his or her autonomic and central nervous systems were grafted. Those portions of the subject’s bodies, which were not used in the conversion process, were cryogenically preserved on Galador. The Galadorians intended to restore the Spaceknights to their original humanoid forms once the war with the Dire Wraiths was over.

The Spaceknights were dispatched with rocket pods and offensive weapons especially suited to each Spaceknight's particular cybernetic strengths. Each Spaceknight was thus equipped with a different weapon than the others or had armor designed so as to give him or her a special power or powers. In the major confrontation that ensued the Spaceknights destroyed the bulk of the Dire Wraiths fleet and their monstrous creature Deathwing. Large numbers of Wraiths had escaped the battle however, and Wraith strongholds were believed to exist in other parts of the universe. Hence, Rom and the other Spaceknights left Galador to stalk Dire Wraiths throughout the universe, and did so for over 200 Earth years.

A number of Spaceknights, including Breaker, Pulsar, Scanner, Seeker, Trapper, and the Unseen, worked together as the so-called Spaceknight Squadron.

Rom himself finally came to Earth to hunt down the Dire Wraiths who had gone there. After the death of the Galadorian Spaceknight Starshine, Rom's Earthwoman friend Brandy Clark was magically linked with Starshine's exoskeleton and thus became the second Starshine. Clark was later returned to her original human form by the creature called Hybrid. The only other Earth human being to become a Spaceknight was the late Archie Stryker who became the second Firefall.

Most of the original generation of Spaceknights possess (in their cyborg forms) superhuman strength, the ability to fly (using rocket pods on their backs), the ability to survive indefinitely in other space, and high resistance to injury by conventional means. Each Spaceknight's armor was principally made of plandarium, an extremety strong metal alloy. Large power requirements, such as movement and the picking up of objects, made use of a meson/anti-meson thermo-electric battery, which can operate under normal conditions for five Earth centuries. The flexible metal exoskeletons contained fluid "motors" which give the Spaceknights their great strength. The Spaceknights' brain are kept alive in a blood-like fluid that circulates through the body organs within the exoskeleton

The world-eater Galactus used his vast power to transport Galador to a new location in space. Hence Ram and his fellow Spaceknights no longer knew where Galador was. Believing themselves defenseless without the Spaceknights, the Galadorians created a new generation of cyborg Spaceknights who were designed to be more formidable than the originals. Those new Spaceknights took over Galador and eventually slaughtered all of its humanoid population.

Rom finally brought about the defeat of the Dire Wraiths, stripping all sorcerer Wraiths in the universe of their mystical powers. Rom and the Spaceknight Squadron found Galador only to discover what the new Spaceknight generation had done. One of the second generation Spaceknights, Heatwave, destroyed the cryogenically preserved portions of the bodies of the first and second generation Spaceknights without orders to do so from his leader, the Spaceknight Dominor. Thus the Spaceknights could never return to their original humanoid forms.

Dominor had hoped that the second generation Spaceknights would themselves return to humanoid form and act as progenitors of a new, stronger Galadorian race. The cryogenically preserved portions of Dominor's own body were still safe, and he planned now to mate with Brandy Clark, who had come to Galador, and become with her the parents of a new Galadorian race. Opposed to Dominor's plans, Rom defeated him in battle. The other second generation Spaceknights tried to use their powers to form a "ring of power” that would destroy Rom and Galador itself. However, Dominor, to prevent the second generation Spaceknights from turning against him, had arranged it so that the formation of the “ring of Power” would destroy the second generation Spaceknights using it. Hence Heatwave and the Spaceknights joining him in the ring destroyed themselves. But in the process the tower holding Dominor’s cryogenically preserved parts was also destroyed and Dominor committed suicide in despair.

Clark found Rom’s cryogenically preserved body parts were still safe, and he regained his original humanoid form. Now he and Brandy Clark live happily together on Galador, intending to become the progenitors of the new Galadorian race themselves, while the first generation Spaceknights act as their protectors.

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