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Juggernaut (Marvel Comics)

Juggernaut


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Context

The Juggernaut is a well-known character in the Marvel Universe. He’s extremely strong, essentially indestructible and cannot be physically stopped.

This is a very old article primarily centred on his likely game stats, rather than a full modern profile.


Background

  • Real Name: Cain Marko
  • Marital Status: Single
  • Known Relatives: Kurt Marko (father, deceased), Marjory Marko (mother, deceased), Sharon Xavier Marko (stepmother, deceased), Charles Xavier (stepbrother)
  • Group Affiliation: Former partner of Black Tom Cassidy, former member of the Exiles II
  • Base Of Operations: Mobile
  • Height: 6’10” (but often seems larger) Weight: 900 lbs
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: Red


Powers and Abilities

The Juggernaut is an unstoppable force. Once he gets in motion, he can plough through nearly anything. He has truly vast superhuman strength, and is for all practical purposes invulnerable to physical harm.

Radiation, toxins, corrosives, cold, heat, gasses, suffocation, hunger, thirst, disease, etc. are likewise not a factor and he has once managed to K.O. the Hulk in straight physical combat.

The only reliable way to stop him is to somehow rip away his helmet (which is welded to his armour – this feat requires high superhuman strength) and mentally attack him.

Another successful attack has been to throw him into still-liquid but hardening cement – a city block worth of it, a hundred feet deep. That kept him occupied for weeks, but he eventually emerged from it none the worse for the wear.

Even magic spells tend to be useless against him, as he is a living artefact powered by a powerful mystical entity. Note, though, that neither Force Field or Magic Field are Always On – there have been at least two encounters where he was caught with his force field down.

Some accounts depict Marko instantly regenerating wounds, but the accuracy of this is not well established.

Marko also has the weird ability not to be recognized when not in costume, despite his humongous size and physique. GMs may wish to keep the description of Juggernaut very quick and undetailed when he’s in his civvies (“a huge guy with red hair”).


History

Cain Marko is the son of Dr. Kurt Marko, an atomic researcher, and was sent to a boarding school when his parents separated. When his father remarried with Sharon Xavier, the widow of his fellow researcher Dr. Brian Xavier, Marko came to live with his new family at Sharon Xavier’s familial mansion.

Marko was often beaten by his father and took out his frustrations on his new stepbrother, Charles. At one point, the young Xavier’s burgeoning mutant powers of telepathy allowed him to read Marko’s mind, an act which Marko greatly resented and never forgave.

Later, Marko had an argument with his father, which resulted in a laboratory “accident” that killed Kurt Marko.

After serving in the military, Cain became a soldier of fortune. While helping revolutionaries in a third-world country, Marko was jailed and met fellow mercenary Black Tom Cassidy. Cassidy used his mutant powers to help them both escape.

Cain Marko and Charles Xavier were serving with the same American military unit during the Korean war, when Marko went AWOL after an attack. Xavier followed Marko, who had found refuge in a lost mystic temple of the deity Cyttorak.

The ruby of Cyttorak

Marko grabbed a glowing ruby and was bodily transformed to a superhuman degree, calling himself the “ Juggernaut” based on an inscription in the temple. At that point the building was hit by a bombardment and razed, although Xavier managed to escape.

Marko took a long time to emerge from the rubble, and spent years tracking down Xavier – who had returned to America to found the X-Men. The X-Men defeated Marko and forced him to retreat.

Juggernaut (Cain Marko) charging on white background

As Juggernaut, Marko has returned to menace Xavier and his X-Men numerous times over the years. He also formed a successful partnership with Black Tom Cassidy. Juggernaut clashed with many heroes, including Spider-Man, X-Force, Thor, and the New Warriors.

During the 1990s Zoe Culloden, an agent of the firm Landau, Luckman, and Lake, arranged to have Marko transported to another dimension. Culloden knew Marko held information about the time-travelling villain Genesis, and hoped that by transporting him elsewhere, such information would not fall in Wolverine’s hands.

Exiles and Onslaught

While in the Ultraverse, Marko encountered several other superhuman beings, in particular a young girl named Amber Hunt and other expatriates from Earth-616 (the Reaper and Sienna Blaze). They formed a loose-knit team known as the Exiles.

During his time with the Exiles, Marko seemed less powerful, but nevertheless put himself in danger to fight crime. He also developed romantic feelings toward Hunt.

After several months Marko and his teammate the Reaper staged Marko’s death in order to convince the beings known as the Tradesmen that the Reaper had repaid a debt and could be sent back home. Marko, the Reaper, and Sienna Blaze all managed to return to Earth-616 .

Meanwhile the psychic being Onslaught grew within Charles Xavier’s mind. Determined to find agents to form an army of his own, Onslaught contacted Marko as one of his first recruits. Marko refused, and Onslaught beat him nearly to death then removed the knowledge of his identity from Marko’s mind.

Marko sought help from the X-Men, and the telepath Jean Grey discovered the truth.

It was too late, however, as Onslaught chose that time to emerge. He ripped the Crimson Gem of Cyttorak from Marko’s body, imprisoning Marko inside.

Inside the jewel, Marko learned he was an avatar for Cyttorak. As such, the otherworldly entity sought to assume control of Marko’s form. The mystics Gomurr the Ancient and Doctor Strange sought to free Marko from the jewel so as to restore the balance of nature.

They imbued Marko with the gem’s power, and, using his newfound strength and sheer force of will, Marko destroyed the manifestation of Cyttorak and returned to Earth. Marko appeared stronger than ever, and it took him some time to be able to learn control of his amplified abilities.

Juggernaut (Cain Marko) advancing

During this time, Marko also appeared as one of the agents of Ozymandias, joining his team New World Order and confronting the X-Men.

When the X-Men appeared to have been dispersed and their mansion destroyed in the wake of the government’s mutant-hunting campaign known as Operation: Zero Tolerance, Marko attempted to claim the X-Men’s headquarters by legal means. The Westchester mansion was owned by Xavier who was missing and presumed dead at the time.

However, upon finding the mansion was largely destroyed and stripped of all high-tech weapons and devices by Operation: Zero Tolerance, Marko gave up his legal scheme.

Later still, Marko heard a rumour about a second gem of Cyttorak and, coveting its power, returned to the temple where he had found the first one. However, it was a trap set by the Cult of the Chejo-Do, who sought the power of the Ruby of Cyttorak for themselves.

The cult drained Marko’s power to energize their own ruby, leaving Marko a shadow of his former self. With the assistance of several members of the X-Men, Black Tom Cassidy freed Marko.

Exemplars

Marko claimed the power of the second ruby, but it was possessed by an evil spirit that assumed control over Marko as the Juggernaut. Under the spirit’s influence, Marko began smashing his way through dimensional walls in an attempt to destroy the spirit’s nemesis, the Trion.

Black Tom Cassidy, the X-Men, and the natives of the other dimension managed to free Marko from the possession, and they all returned to Earth.

Marko recently learned that the temple he found was but one of 8 such temples, each dedicated to a different mystical entity. Although Juggernaut had been activated earlier then scheduled, the other “Exemplars” were recently created and bade Juggernaut to join them in destroying the world.

Juggernaut clashed with his patron Cyttorak, claiming his independence from the god once again, and was successful in spurning his influence and helping assorted heroes defeat the remaining Exemplars.

At the end of the battle, Marko agreed to place himself in custody in return for the heroes’ help, but he soon escaped.

Juggernaut (Cain Marko) video game render

Marko was then drafted into the service of the Commission for Superhuman Activities as a super-powered bounty hunter. However, this new career was short-lived, and Marko resumed working alongside Black Tom as criminals. The two were once hired by the enigmatic villain known as Ulysses to kill the X-Men’s leader Cyclops but failed.

Joining the Institute

More recently, Marko requested the X-Men’s help in stopping Black Tom, whose plant-based powers had resurfaced and flared out of control. Together, Marko and the X-Men defeated Tom.

Having his buddy Black Tom attempt to murder him had a deep impact on the Juggernaut, and he liked the sense of camaraderie and accomplishment he found at the X-Men side – a sentiment he never had really experienced before.

Marko left the side of Black Tom, accepting the invitation his step-brother had long wanted to give him and took up residence at his mansion, now called the Xavier Institute. Marko agreed in part as he felt that he had no where else to go.

However, Marko was secretly feeling but a shadow of his former self – his powers had been steadily waning ever since his battle with Cytorrak at the time of Onslaught.


Description

See illustrations.


Personality

Juggernaut is arguably the toughest guy in the world, knows it, and is very satisfied with that. He just does whatever he wants to do and takes whatever he wants to take – no one can truly stop him.

Although he’s basically amoral and doesn’t care about the sanctity of human life, the rights other people have, higher moral values, etc. etc. he places a lot of importance in friendship and respects courage in others, especially women.

He is, in one word, a bully.


Quotes

“Because once I start to move, ain’t no force in the universe that can stop me !”


DC Universe History

Juggernaut would make an ideal foe for either Superman or Captain Marvel. If facing Captain Marvel, Marko would replace Ibac and may originally have been a bully who knows Billy Batson or could even be related somehow.

If used against the Man of Steel, Marko would have gained his powers from Mr. Mxyzptlk and just happen to be someone Clark Kent grew up with. In either case, the Juggernaut could replace Doomsday in the “Death of Superman”.

If you are going to use Juggernaut for this then it would be his very first appearance just as it was Doomsday’s. Instead of Doomsday falling to Earth, Marko would become empowered and start abusing his newfound abilities to the fullest of his ability.

Like Doomsday, he would begin a trek across the country with various heroes and teams trying and failing to stop him.

As he approached Metropolis Superman intercepts him but is pulling his punches as usual. Marko is able to stand up to Superman fighting like a wimp but it is still enough to start Juggernaut’s Power Reserve working.

By the time Superman finally realizes what he is up against and stops holding back, Marko has significantly increased in power and unstoppability. Perhaps his power reserve has already started functioning from his fight with the JLA as well.

Now, Marko doesn’t have any experience with his powers and “everyone knows” is that Superman is “invulnerable” so Marko doesn’t hesitate to do his utmost to keep from being stopped.

Assume Superman starts out slightly below his usual HP level for some reason and Marko is riding high in HPs from defeating the JLA and it is entirely possible that Marko could unintentionally kill a Superman who was putting the very last of his HPs into his AV and EV in a last-ditch effort to stop the Juggernaut who was just feet away from the cornerstone of the Daily Planet building.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

Juggernaut

Dex: 04 Str: 20 Bod: 18 Motivation: Mercenary
Int: 04 Wil: 03 Min: 04 Occupation: Criminal
Inf: 06 Aur: 03 Spi: 06 Resources {or Wealth}: 005
Init: 015 HP: 060

Powers:
Density increase: 01, Force field: 20, Growth: 01, Magic field (Self only): 10, Power Reserve (STR, Running): 15, Running: 02, Sealed systems: 18, Systemic antidote: 05

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • Density Increase and Growth are Always On and Already Factored In
  • Force Field is Self Only (-2) but Juggernaut can attack through it
  • Force field does not add to RV against the knockback of a Planned Knockback Attack (but otherwise functions normally) (-0)
  • Power Reserve (STR) : see below
  • Power Reserve (Running) can only be used to bring Running back to 02 APs when it gets lowered
  • Power Reserve requires momentum before it can be brought to bear (-1)
  • Running is not a legal target for Neutralization in itself but is Elementally Linked to STR

Skills:
Charisma (Intimidation): 05, Martial artist (AV): 06, Military science: 03

Advantages:
Iron nerves (see below), No Vital Areas

Connections:
Black Tom Cassidy (High) (later was replaced with X-Men (Low)), Jean Grey (Low)

Drawbacks:
Misc.: The Juggernaut has no natural, DEX-derived movement speed and uses his Running power instead. Attack vulnerability (Cytorrak-powered spells and effects, -1CS OV/RV). Formerly had a SIA toward helping Black Tom.

Equipment:
Helmet [BODY (Hardened) 16, Mind field (self only): 15], and quite often a Skullcap [BODY 08, Mind field (self only): 10 – the Helmet and the Skullcap’s Powers do not stack].


Unstoppable force

The Juggernaut can walk through nearly any obstacle without even breaking stride. If his fantastic STR is not sufficient to go through an obstacle, he’ll start using his Power Reserve, applying an ever-rising amount of force to burst through.

The Power Reserve, when used to boost STR, takes 3 APs of time for the first AP to become active. At 4 APs, the second AP is available, at 5 APs the third,etc. until 20 APs of time have elapsed and the Juggernaut’s STR reaches 35 APs.

This enhanced STR is only useable to plow through obstacles, such as applying pressure on a wall or force field, breaking free from giant space tentacles, overcoming intense gravitational fields, ignoring people trying to wrestle him to the ground, walking upstream into a super-high-pressure jet of water, or thrashing through a hundred feet of hardening concrete.

It is not an all-purpose STR boost, and it disappears once the obstacle has been ploughed through.

The Power Reserve can also be used to maintain his movement rate, which is independent from his DEX. Thus, even if the Juggernaut’s DEX is lowered to 0 by Flash, Snare or any other effect, this will not affect his movement speed.

Some interpretations may be needed for some Powers which reduce movement to 0, such as Mental Freeze – which will stop the Juggernaut.

Note that the Juggernaut has to have some momentum before he can start increasing his strength – about a step’s worth. If he cannot start moving, he cannot become an unstoppable force.

As for the infamous Juggernaut-sinks-into-concrete-for-months incident, it should be noted that it is very likely that most of Marko’s problems were being unable to know whether he was going up and down, being disoriented and going in circles.

Most people get lost easily without visual clues, he was completely underground and he’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

Juggernaut (Cain Marko) in front of steps in a video game


“Take your best shot, bud”

Marko has a special version of the Iron Nerves Advantage. It has double the normal effects (+4CS) if his opponent has no demonstrated ability to harm him, which is the default case. However, if an opponent is able to physically hurt him (like Onslaught), he loses his Advantage entirely.

The special nature of Phobia and Aura of Fear might be able to convince him that there is a real danger, and he would thus receive no Iron Nerves Bonus. This is a GM’s call, based on the exact nature of the fear effect.


The drop of a hat

Ripping off the Juggernaut’s helmet (presumably to hit him mentally and thus bring him down) requires scoring RAPs against the helmet’s BODY/BODY using STR/STR.

It is possible to attempt to weaken the integrity of the helmet by doing a Trick Shot. The modified OV for the Trick Shot is 08 (Trick Shot on a small, moving object) and the RV is the BODY of a rivet (10). The RAPs gained by this are subtracted from the helm’s BODY for ripping purposes.

The same maneuver is possible against the skullcap once the helmet has been disposed of, with a 0V 08/RV 04.

By Sébastien Andrivet

Source of Character: Marvel Universe

Helper(s): History adapted from the UHTMU (http://marvelbook.topcities.com). Also Jay Myers, David Johnston, Nick Yankovec, Jobe, Roy Cowan, Peter Piispanen, Elias dosSantos, Chris Cottingham, Jackson.

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