The Sentinels were first created by Dr. Bolivar Trask, who intended to use them to save humanity from what he saw as a threat to the species' existence in the form of mutants.
In a television debate between Trask and Professor Charles Xavier, Trask revealed and then activated the Sentinels, who promptly decided that the best way to protect humanity was to rule over it themselves. The Sentinels kidnapped Xavier and brought him and Trask to the primary Sentinel, Master Mold, only for Xavier's students, the X-Men, to find them. When Trask realized the error in his ways and that not all mutants were a threat to the world at large, he aided the X-Men by sabotaging the machinery in the Sentinel base, destroying Master Mold and the Sentinels in the explosion, but he died in the process. However, numerous Sentinels and several Master Molds were built after the destruction of the original models.
Trask had a son, Larry, who was also a mutant. Trask gave his son a control medallion which blocked the Sentinels' mutant-sensing equipment. Not aware that he was a mutant, Larry built the next batch of Sentinels, only to be slain by them when he removed the control medallion. Larry's "Mark II" Sentinels were later persuaded by Cyclops to fly into the sun, as he was able to convince them that they needed to destroy the sun in order to completely prevent mutation. 
The most long-lived Sentinel project was that of Project Wideawake, a government agency led by Henry Gyrich and Valerie Cooper that purchased Sentinels from Sebastian Shaw, the mutant Black King of the Hellfire Club. Project: Wideawake also had its own research and development division, based at Camp Hayden, which included an attempt to recreate Nimrod and use this technology to adapt the purchased Sentinels. Sentinels created by this project fought the X-Men, the New Mutants, the Falcon, and X-Factor, among others.
During the "Acts of Vengeance", the Asgardian trickster god Loki manipulated various super-villains into attacking random superheroes with whom they had no previous enmity. For the climax of this chaos, he magically amplified the power of three Sentinels, merged them into the massive Tri-Sentinel, and sent the gestalt robot to destroy New York City by leveling a nearby nuclear power plant. Spider-Man was possessed by the disembodied spirit known as Captain Universe to prevent this from occurring, and lost the Captain Universe power once he destroyed the Tri-Sentinel. However, the Tri-Sentinel's remains were gathered by a survivalist group, and it rebuilt itself and again attempted to destroy the power plant. It was destroyed on a sub-molecular level by Spider-Man, with the assistance of Nova, who released a deposit of "anti-metal" (Antarctic vibranium) at the center of its body.
During the Onslaught crossover, a number of government-owned Sentinels were reprogrammed by the Dark Beast in service of the psychic entity called Onslaught. These Sentinels fought the X-Men, Avengers, a then-retired Peter Parker and the current Spider-Man (Ben Reilly). They ended the career of the heroic Green Goblin (Phil Urich) when a piece of machinery damaged his mask. The effects of Onslaught's rampage ends the lives of the parents of Hallie Takahama, who would later join the Thunderbolts as Jolt.
One of the Sentinels involved in this operation had data-gathering as it's primary function. Observing from the edge of space, it survived when Onslaught was defeated. Its extrapolations served to convince it a more deadly threat was facing the population of Earth. It overrode its own programming and tried to warn the X-Men. Wary of any Sentinel, they shot it down. It died, saying it was afraid to do so, before it could deliver its warning.
During the "Operation: Zero Tolerance" crossover, a number of humans were transformed into cyborg Human-Sentinel hybrids known as Prime Sentinels. These Pseudo-Sentinels were led by the robotic humanoid Bastion. One of these Prime Sentinels, Karima Shapandar, had her mind restored by Magneto and Professor X, though her physical modifications remained.
During the war against Kang the Conqueror, a battalion of Sentinels was sent into space to attack his space station. Kang had, during a prolonged visit to the early 20th century, become an influential pioneer in robotics under the alias "Victor Timely", and was able to use his knowledge of modern robotics to instantly take control of these Sentinels and send them to attack Earth.
Despite his success in the battle, during which thousands of Washington D.C. citizens were slain, Kang was ultimately defeated by the Avengers. The robotic hero X-51, better known as Machine Man, was temporary reprogrammed with Sentinel programming.
In New X-Men #115, Wolverine and Cyclops destroy two Sentinels in Australia. Meanwhile, Professor X's evil twin Cassandra Nova used the nephew of Bolivar Trask to revive a Master Mold in Amazonia and control it's array of "Wild Sentinels". The nephew was genetically similar enough to Bolivar so as to be protected, the Sentinel's prime directive was to preserve Trask DNA. Cassandra eventually transformed herself into the man's genetic duplicate, killed him and took control of the machines.
She used this Master Mold to send a number of skyscraper-sized, highly adaptive "Wild Sentinels" to destroy most of the population of Genosha. 16 million people, mostly mutants, were killed. In Mekanix, a number of Wild Sentinels hijacked a ship from South America and attacked Chicago, where Kitty Pryde was attending university.
On Genosha, one of the deactivated Wild Sentinels was transformed by several of the surviving Genoshan mutants (Unus, Paralyzer, Toad and Toad-In-Waiting) into a statue of Magneto, with Professor X's face later also added to the statue, another was temporarily animated by Danger, the sentient manifestation of the X-Men's Danger Room.
Nova also programmed a number of microscopic, nanite-based "Nano-Sentinels" to attack the blood cells of the inhabitants of the Xavier Institute, making the X-Men and their students sick. The Nano-Sentinels were destroyed by Xorn, who may have been an alias of Magneto, although some of them were used to restore Professor Xavier's spine and legs for the duration of Xorn's stay with the X-Men. The entity calling itself Xorn had used the Micro-Sentinels to fake healing abilities. When he left, he took away Xavier's mobility.
X-Men Forever (Earth-161)
The Sentinels on Earth-295 were constructed by Bolivar Trask a member of the Human High Council to defend the humanity from the threat of Apocalypse. Early prototypes were manufactured in Africa and were sent to defend Wakanda from Apocalypses genetic culling, leading to a clash with the X-Men in the process. This model of Sentinel were human sized were armed with palm mounted blasters and rocket boots.
They were phased out for giant humanoid robots armed with laser cannons in their heads, and could fire their gauntlets like rockets. They also contained rocket boots that allowed for flight. They acted as a primary defender of the Eurasian settlement of humans. They had a patrol route that circled the entire European continent and the north eastern region of Africa. Manufacturing plants where the Sentinels were created were unconfirmed but speculated to be located both at Muir Island, Scotland and the German colonies.
A squad of Sentinels were dispatched by the Human High Council to perform a massive human evacuation of remaining humans in North America. With the aid of Weapon X and Jean Grey the Sentinels would breach Apocalypse's sea-wall defense perimeter. Arriving on the shores of America, a squad of X-Men would be there to aid with the evacuation process, despite some interference by brought on by the Brotherhood of Chaos. Their mission would be a success although they would unknowingly smuggle Copycat, Box and the Reavers into Europe.
Following the downfall of Apocalypse the Sentinels were used by Weapon X in his quest to cull the human race.
Guardians of the Galaxy (Earth-691)
After killing many heroes and villains, the sentinels were destroyed by Namor.
In Earth-811, the Omega Class Sentinels were the robotic controllers of the United States of America. Sentinel Mk VI was the previous model, and Nimrod was following the model. They were self-replicating robotic "overseers" of Earth and Mutant hunters. They were originally born in the Baxter Building, New York City, New York, Earth-811. Also, other construction centers throughout the United States, Earth-811.
In alternate reality of Earth-811 ("Days of Future Past"), the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants assassinated Senator Robert Kelly. As a result, anti-mutant hysteria grew and an extreme candidate was elected President. This President freed the Sentinels, giving them the open order to permanently eliminate the mutant "threat".
The Sentinels reacted by taking control of the United States and all of North America, and killing or capturing virtually all of the super humans, be it mutants or not. Captured mutants were kept in concentration camps known as "mutant internment centers".
The self-replicating Sentinels developed the new model, the Omega series, designed specially to hunt and kill super-human mutants. They share the most threatening feature of Mark II, a learning program.
- Darts: Omega Sentinels carried ten steel javelin-like darts on the trunk that could be thrown to pierce an opponent.
- Electric Isolation: Omega Sentinels were specially protected against electric attacks.
- Encephalo-Scanner: At least some of the Omega Sentinels ("Executive type") were equipped with an scanner to read brainwaves of a target and determine if it was saying the truth. This device was not infallible.
- Energy Blast: The Mark I had an amount of different blasts, including but not reducing to plasm, electrons, stunners and heat, that could be shot from their chests. They were also armed with a disintegrator only working with inorganic matter.
- Flight used jets
- Learning Program: A special learning program allowed a particular Mk IV a certain advantage when fighting an enemy, but only after at least some seconds of analysis. This data could be stored for future uses against the same enemy, so that any Sentinel from any model could access the information. Any needed modification would take at least one week. In the 21st century, all known mutants, living or dead, were filed.
- Mutant Detection: The Sentinels constantly scanned all the living beings in the immediate surrounding area and were able to determine if they were humans or mutants. The "immediate area" covered up to ten miles.
- Robot: Due to its nature, the sentinels were protected by the sheer strength of the hull. They could not be affected by emotional or mental attacks, nor by illusions. However, they were susceptible to attacks affecting machinery.
Omega Sentinels were able to lift up to 70 tons.
The Mk I Sentinels were programmed to protect humanity from mutants, but their programming was completely open as for how they could do that. Thus, they could damage or kill humans to capture mutants.
Pre-digital Era (Earth-889)
After the Zeppelin accident, in which one the confrontation between the alternate reality invasion scout Agent X-13 and Mr. Logan of the X-Society ended up in a catastrophic explosion and the death of numerous civilians, the mutants were then accused to be responsible of the event and was subsequently disowned and assigned to residence by the authorities, threatened by mechanical men called Sentinels.
On Earth-1191, the Sentinels would take over the world much as they did on Earth-811, however mutants would eventually fight back and free themselves from slavery. Trevor Fitzroy would bring some of these Sentinels with him when he traveled back to present day Earth-616 and they would be used as part of his "game" with the Upstarts to slay Donald Pierce and the Reavers. One such Sentinel would be damaged and become inundated with the bio-mechanical fluid that Pierce used to create his cyborgs and androids. When accidentally reactivated by Wolverine and Jubilee this Sentinel would find that it had gained sentience and rechristen itself 3.14159. It would attempt to eradicate the Earth to make room for Sentinels to be a dominant life form on the planet and would reactivate Larry Trask's Mark II Sentinels to accomplish this goal. It would scrap the plan when it would witness human compassion when battling Logan and Jubilee and decide to try to understand and alter Sentinel programming to be able to articular compassion. This process, according to 3.14159 would take over 2137 years.
In Ultimate X-Men, the Sentinels, created by Bolivar Trask, were already in action at the beginning of the first story arc, hunting down and killing mutants on the streets.
Sentinel Battle Armor
Later on, there were also the New Sentinels that were 60 of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s top agents in a Sentinel battle armor that has enough hardware to take on a fleet of the old Sentinel models (though this may have been an exaggeration). A new breed of Sentinels, created by Trask under orders from the Fenris twins, is currently hunting mutants.
Nimrod Model Sentinels
Functioning on a world where almost all of the mutants had been eliminated, these sentinels weren't as formidable as some from other universes, and the Exiles enjoyed kicking the tar out of them alongside Weapon X.
Alternate 2099 (Earth-2992)
The Sentinels of this alternative future patrols the streets of New York at night
Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends (Earth-8107)
A Sentinel appeared in a flashback of the episode of Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends "A Firestar Is Born".
Earth X (Earth-9997)
The past history of the Sentinels is similar to that of their Earth-616 counterpart. In recent history, when humanity began to mutate due to the Terrigen Mists, the governments of the world did not know the cause and assumed that mutations was a communicable disease being spread by Mutants. In order to try and stave what they believe to be the cause of the infection by placing mutants and those who were "infected" in internment camps.
Humans captured and turned into cyborgs by Bolivar Trask. Meant to be utilized to destroy mutants. The humans were eventually freed of the cyborg parts and returned to normal after Trask's defeat.
Age of X (Earth-11326)
Originally built by Bolivar Trask, the Sentinels were mutant hunting robots designed to round up the mutant populace and place them in internment camps and battle the growing number of mutant dissidents (most notably Magneto). Riding the wave of anti-mutant hysteria, Bolivar Trask eventually ascended to the office of Vice-President, and the Sentinels took a more active role in policing America's mutants.
After the Human-Mutant war, Magneto reprogrammed the Sentinels that were used against mutants to be his personal enforcers of the laws of the House of Magnus around the globe.
They ended up persecuting humans in the same way they originally persecuted the mutants.
Wolverine and the X-Men (Earth-80920)
Wolverine's abilities were incorporated into a futuristic version of the sentinel called Sentinel Hounds which could heal itself.
When Sue Storm became a despot that was driven to rid the world of mutants and people with super powers, she somehow captured Wolverine and connected him to a central nervous system for Sentinels, making them look, act, and have similar hunting skills as him. These Sentinels were shut down, presumably for good, when the Wolverine of the past found and killed Logan in an act of mercy.
Mutant Extinction (Earth-94831)
On Earth-94831, the Sentinels were deployed by President Kelly in order to rid the world of the 'mutant problem'. They successfully destroyed the X-Men, but were unable to complete his plan due to King Hyperion destroying them all so that he could take over the planet for himself.
Home of Disembodied Xavier Head (Earth-TRN216)
After Charles Xavier discovered the X-Gene, he recruited and trained a group of bright young mutants as role models, ambassadors, and entertainers. And the world loved them until one night when they were attacked and killed by a group of Human-Sentinels. In a moment of anguish and rage, Xavier used his abilities to kill the humans responsible.
X-Men Legends (Earth-7964)
The Sentinels are shown assisting with the evacuation after Apocalypse devastates New York City. Bastion later turns them on the X-Men and the Brotherhood of Mutants. After Bastion is defeated, the Sentinels resume their evacuation duties.
Sentinels flown by humans under the orders of Clan Yoshida to capture / kill the mutants. Among its pilots there was Forge
X-Men film series (Earth-10005)
While infiltrating the headquarters of Project: Wideawake to find his old teammate John Wraith, Wolverine encounters two full-sized Sentinels, destroying a half-finished Sentinel with a Sentinel hand-weapon and defeating the other one in a prolonged confrontation.
Sentinels are part of William Stryker's back-up plan if his plan to eliminate all mutants with the Dark Cerebro failed. Stryker would have mutant-hunting robots called Sentinels to track down and kill all mutants they could find.
Powers and Abilities
Sentinels have a vast array of abilities:
They can fly, shoot various weapons (primarily energy blasts and restraining devices) from different parts of their bodies, and detect mutants at long range. Some of them could even change form and re-assemble after being destroyed
Varies, normally includes ability to detect mutants.
Average Strength level
Varies, normally superhuman.
Most Sentinel AI is not very advanced and larger sentinels move quite slow on the ground.
Habitat: Same as Earth
Gravity: Same as Earth
Atmosphere: They do not need to breath
Population: Population of this race is unknown.
Type of Government: Government type unknown.
Level of Technology: Same as Earth
Cultural Traits: Cultural traits unknown.
- A Sentinel series was published under the Tsunami imprint in 2002. This series followed a boy named Juston Seyfert who discovered and reprogrammed a Sentinel of his own, using it for both good deeds and boosts to his own popularity. The series was canceled after twelve issues, but was revived in 2005 for a five-issue limited series.
- For a short time, Doctor Doom used the original sentinel models as robotic minions and protection in his castle in Latveria.
- Discuss Sentinels on the forums
- Appearances of Sentinels
- Race Gallery: Sentinels
- Fan-Art Gallery: Sentinels
- Images of Sentinels
Links and References