In several realities, this race based itself on Mars.
The Martian Masters invaded Earth in the early 20th century in what was known as the first War of the Worlds. The invaders later abandoned Earth after possessing no immunizations to Earth's diseases which wiped out the invaders. Following the invasion, the events were heavily fictionalized by H.G. Wells in his book The War of the Worlds.
By 2001, the Martian Masters made a comeback on Earth. This time, the invaders are immune to Earth's diseases. The Martians' initial assault simultaneously destroyed all human stockpiles of nuclear arms, assuring that not one nuclear weapon would be fired in the course of the war. By morning the Martians had begun dismantling transportation systems. Terran forces used biological weapons against the invaders, only to discover that they had developed a general-purpose immunity.
While the Martians sought to keep as many humans alive as possible for food, labor, and entertainment, the biological weapons deployed during the assault killed or mutated many. Armies conducted counter-attacks, and civilians either rose in defense or fled. The second assault -- skirmishes with pockets of resistance, civilian freedom fighters, and remaining superheroes such as Captain America and Spider-Man -- lasted into 2006, but the initial assault had been so devastating that the event soon became known as the One Night War.
Led by a powerful High Overlord, the Martian Masters enslaved most of the population, as labor in converting Terran edifices to new uses, guards for their fortresses, or even as simple cattle. Some were drafted as gladiators to fight for the Martian Masters' amusement, while others were trained as Exterminators to hunt down the last freemen threatening Martian rule. The Martians were particularly interested in co-opting scientists, many of whom became Keepers, collaborators responsible for overseeing their fellow humans. In 2014, the gladiator Killraven escaped from captivity, and soon became the leader of a particularly troublesome band of freemen. Despite any hopes humanity held for a savior, the Martian force did not depart until 2075, having finally depleted Earth's resources.
Powers and Abilities
- The Martians lacked the immunization to Earth's native bacterias which cost the loss of the invasion force during the First War of the Worlds. However, the Martians finally made themselves immune to Earth's diseases and returned in the second invasion of Earth.
- The Martian Masters are distinctive from the Martians that first and only appeared in Marvel Mystery Comics #3.
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