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X-Factor Investigations (Marvel Comics) (Peter

X-Factor Investigations


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

Context

  • X-Factor is a mutant team from the Marvel Universe.
  • This version of the team was published from 2006 to 2013.
  • While a mutant title, it only really interacted with other mutant titles during the crossovers. Otherwise it generally went its own way, using whichever characters weren’t wanted by the more important mutant titles.

Profile

Organization

Full Name:
X-Factor Investigations

Purpose:
X-Factor is a detective agency, specialising in the odder cases. Initially it specialised in mutant-based cases. Since most mutants lost their powers shortly after the agency began, that market dried up. They remained the go-to agency for former mutants though, especially ones whose problems were too small to interest the X-Men.

Modus Operandi:
Investigative, with specific goals as defined by their clients. The generally benevolent attitudes of most members meant they often got further embroiled in events while trying to put things right.

Extent of operations:
Mainly New York City.

Bases of Operations:
Mutanttown, NY. Briefly worked out of Detroit.

Major Funding:
Clients.

Known Enemies:
Mister Tryp, Hela.

Known Allies:
X-Men, and associated groups.

Membership

Number of active members:
Varies.

Number of reserve members:
0.

Organizational structure:
Madrox is ostensibly in charge, owning the agency name and their building. Whether anyone else will listen to him varies with their moods. At times he’s been replaced by Siryn and Havok.

Known current members:
Jaime Madrox, Layla Miller, Longshot, M, Polaris, Rictor, Shatterstar, Wolfsbane.

Known former members:
Darwin, Havok, Pip the Troll, Siryn (now Morrigan), Strong Guy.

Membership requirements:
Invitation. Or hanging around until accepted, in Layla’s case.


History

X-Factor investigations was set up by Jamie Madrox. He called it XXX Investigations, until told that sounded like he investigated porn. He named it after his former team instead. It was based in an office in the Mutanttown area of New York. After winning a Who wants to be a Millionaire style game show, he bought the building.

The team – after Jamie stopped working alone – was initially Guido Carosella (Strong Guy), Wolfsbane, Monet St. Croix (M), and Siryn. Rictor joined after they stopped him committing suicide, and Layla Miller hung around until they grudgingly accepted she wouldn’t leave.

The first mystery the group set themselves to learn was what caused the depowering of mutants worldwide. Though Layla did what she could to prevent them learning this.

Multiple Singularities

X-Factor soon came into conflict with Singularity Investigations. X-Factor had investigated a crime one of Singularity’s clients had committed. Singularity helped to cover it up. Tensions escalated when Siryn was attacked, and Singularity sent an assassin after the team. The assassin met with a fatal accident after encountering Layla.

Singularity was run by Damian Tryp Sr., and his son. Tryp was actually a single powered individual with (among other things) time powers. Three versions of him ran Singularity. Tryp Jr., Tryp Sr., and Tryp the Elder, who came from the future and wasn’t physically in synch with reality.

X-Factor Investigations (Marvel Comics) (Peter "PAD" David) early team charging

Tryp claimed to be a changeling. A precursor to mutants, whose powers manifested at birth rather than in adolescence. This made them more vulnerable, so they’d never gained the foothold mutants had. He claimed Madrox, whose powers had also manifested at birth, was also a changeling.

Tryp had tried to buy a controlling interest in X-Factor. Madrox laughed in his face. That meeting ended with Madrox being thrown out of their skyscraper window. Or his dupe, at least.

Pre-Schism Schism

Following hints from Tryp, X-Factor looked to their allies for information on the Decimation. Siryn used her hypnotic powers on Spider-Man. He revealed that he, the Avengers, and the X-Men had been involved in the incident. And that the Scarlet Witch had been responsible, along with her brother, Quicksilver.

The revelation that the X-Men had known all along caused a rift in relations between the groups. Especially between Madrox and Cyclops. They kept the secret, since knowledge a mutant could so affect the world would stoke anti-mutant sentiment.

They clashed with Quicksilver, who’d moved in nearby. He was using terrigen-based powers to restore unstable abilities to former mutants. Many of whom were killed by the instability.

The group took a public stand against the mandatory Superhuman Registration Act. Despite some of them signing and others already being listed due to previous government service.

Infiltration

A Singularity scientist came to X-Factor for help. He revealed Tryp had him trying to recreate the mutant-targeting Legacy virus. Madrox sent Strong Guy to escort him to get the proof he’d secured. Unfortunately, Tryp had already planted a post-hypnotic suggestion in Guido, turning him into a sleeper agent. Guido killed the scientist.

X-Factor Investigations (Marvel Comics) (Peter "PAD" David) the team under a bridge

Arranging an evacuation of the Singularity building, X-Factor infiltrated it in search of evidence. Madrox met Tryp the Elder. He admitted to having killed Madrox’s parents, and their intention to release the virus. Tryp wished to prevent a future where X-Factor undid the Decimation, resulting in humanity being wiped out in bloody conflict.

They were unable to find evidence, but an errant Madrox dupe blew the building up when they were clear. The blast killed Tryp Jr. and Sr.. Due to his being outside the timeline, Tryp the Elder survived.

Messiah Complex

X-Factor reluctantly aided the X-Men when a new mutant was hunted by various factions. Wolfbane joined the hunting party, Rictor infiltrated the Purifiers, and Madrox and Layla headed to Forge’s lab.

Since the birth, Forge had detected two different strong future paths. He built a device to send a Madrox dupe into each future to see what they could learn. They were sent as planned, but Layla jumped on the second at the last moment, travelling to the future with it.

Layla and Madrox discovered a future where mutants were kept in a concentration camp. They learned it was due to an event caused by the newly born mutant, and met the young Lucas Bishop. Layla killed the dupe so he could report back to the past. Leaving her stuck in the future, where she knew she needed to be.

Madrox emerged from a coma to warn the X-Men that Bishop wanted the new mutant dead. The remaining X-Factor members joined the X-Men battling the Marauders. Allowing Cable to escape to the future with the baby, Hope.

Divided we Stand

Rahne left to join X-Force. She’d been scared by a future vision given to her by Tryp, in which she killed Madrox and Layla on their wedding night.

A drunken night led to Madrox or a dupe, or dupes, having sex with Siryn and M. Neither was happy to learn about the other. It also resulted in Siryn getting pregnant.

X-Factor Investigations (Marvel Comics) (Peter "PAD" David) team ready for battle

Arcade turned Mutanttown into a Murderworld after being hired by a disgraced Purifier. X-Factor stopped him, but not before most of the area was burned down. They draw government attention in the form of Valerie Cooper, who tried to recruit them.

Unwilling to accept that, Madrox destroyed their building – having already gained the relevant clearances – and the team disappeared. They set up in Detroit, determined to stay under the radar.

Secret Invasion

When Longshot and Darwin were spotted in Detroit, Darwin’s long-lost father hired X-Factor to find him. Despite some Skrull trouble, they reunited the pair.

Unfortunately Darwin’s father was only interested in selling his son to the Karma Project. He did, and got shot and left in a coma for his troubles. X-Factor tracked Darwin down again, and freed him from the Karma Project. Darwin and Longshot joined the team.

The rest of the team learned Valerie Cooper hadn’t lost track of them. And that Madrox had been accepting jobs from her on the quiet for a while. While Siryn wasn’t happy with this, it was soon overwhelmed by her going into labour.

She had a son she decided to name Sean, after her late father. When she handed him to Madrox, the baby was involuntarily absorbed. He’d been a facet of the dupe rather than a real being. The distraught Siryn broke Madrox’s finger and threatened to kill him before being restrained. Madrox left.

Future Tensions

Investigating the suspicious deaths of former mutants, X-Factor discovered the victims were being hunted. And became targets themselves. The hunter, Cortex, could control others. He used Shatterstar and M as his surrogates.

Cortex was revealed to be the second dupe Madrox had sent into the future. He’d been altered by Tryp the Elder in the future, and sent back to kill strategic mutants.

Cortex was pulled back to the future, where the time-displaced Madrox had been reunited with the older Layla Miller. They stopped Cortex, foiled Tryp’s schemes, and Madrox was sent back to his own time. Layla also returned, but to an earlier time.

Choosing to give Siryn space, Madrox reopened his own X-Factor office in New York. When Siryn closed down the Detroit office to get some time alone, the rest of the team joined Madrox in New York.

The Invisible Woman has Vanished

The team were asked by Franklin and Valeria Richards to look into the disappearance of their mother, the Invisible Woman. Their father, Reed Richards, insisted she wasn’t missing. Madrox didn’t believe him.

Rictor snuck a look in the Fantasticar while Madrox was talking to Reed – and while Shatterstar and Guido fought the Thing. They got one of Sue’s dropped hairclips for Longshot to take a reading from. He saw her being abducted, and got an image of the location for Shatterstar to teleport to.

Before they could decide what to do, the Thing arrived for a rematch. In the chaos, Shatterstar teleported all of them but Guido to the abduction site. In Latveria.

Monet, Thing, and Shatterstar shot off to storm Doom’s castle. Leaving Madrox and the others to investigate. Following the trail of a missing local man, they located an odd grave. They release the real Reed Richards after digging it up. He’d been subdued and imprisoned by an impostor.

They rushed to the castle, where the others and the Invisible Woman were still alive. They found Doom painting Layla in a Mona Lisa pose. He revealed the fake Reed Richards was actually the Doom from another reality in his rival’s body. Their Doom didn’t trust his duplicate, and sent most of them back to New York to stop him.

Second Coming

As soon as they’d dealt with the false Richards, Monet took off. She learned that her father had been kidnapped by terrorists. Guido’s government contacts located them in South America, and he accompanied her there.

The kidnapping was carried out by agents of the dying Baron Mordo. He wanted to drain M’s life force to invigorate himself. The rescue attempt was complicated when Bastion’s forces attacked as part of a multi-pronged assault of X-Factor, during the Second Coming of Hope.

The main team had been hired by the Absorbing Man to spy on his wife, Titania. He claimed to suspect her of cheating on him. Madrox was suspicious, and had Longshot accept the cash so he could get a reading off it. Darwin went into the trap with a car full of holograms, while the others covertly moved to a back-up site.

Other forces attacked Siryn – now Banshee – in Dublin airport. The arrival of Layla and Shatterstar let her escape. The team was reunited at the back up site, and survived an attack by the enemy force.

Happenings in Vegas

Rahne returned to the team soon after. She was scarred by her time on X-Force, and heavily pregnant. Shocked to find Rictor in a relationship with Shatterstar, she let him believe he was the father.

Hired by a femme fatale to find a thief and return her goods, Madrox recovered the object from Pip the Troll. The object was all that hid him from the powers of his previous captor, X-Factor’s client, Hela. Now able to detect him, Hela appeared and took him.

Irritated and guilty at being used, Madrox led the team to Hela’s base on Earth: Las Vegas. Poking around drew an attack by Norse undead, and Thor arrived to aid them thanks to Longshot’s luck. He led them to a confrontation with Hela. In Hel.

The battle ended when Madrox tricked Hela into attacking Darwin. His evolutionary powers let him survive her attack, and they were able to escape with Pip.

They didn’t emerge unscathed. During the battle they encountered the wolf prince, Hrim Hari. He revealed he was the father of Rahne’s baby. And Darwin absorbed a fraction of Hela’s death powers. Having trouble getting to grips with them, he left the team. Pip joined them as receptionist and office manager.

Unnatural Nativity

While protecting Mayor Jameson, an assassin shot and killed Guido instead. Layla covertly used her powers to restore him to life. The limitation of her powers was that the revived being came back without a soul. This changed the path of the future as she remembered it.

X-Factor became target of demonic attacks as the birth of Rahne’s child approached. She went on the run during one attack, aided by Werewolf-by-Night, Jack Russell. He’d answered a mystical call to protect the child.

They were hunted by an array of battling supernatural types. X-Factor caught up with the pursuers in time to slow them down. Rahne found what she thought was safe haven in the forest. It turned out to be someone else after her baby, who took her captive. She gave birth to her son, Tier, coughing him up through her mouth.

Within seconds of being born, the wolf-like baby recognised their captor as a threat and ripped out his throat. Horrified, Rahne’s religious upbringing caused her to deny her child. Tier fled, the demons soon picking up his scent.

The number of hunters trying to claim him proved his best defence, as they fought each other for the prize. The situation escalated when Hela appeared. When the dust settled, X-Factor were alone, with no signs of Tier or his hunters. They hadn’t gotten him, Russell having spirited him away to safety.

They Keep Killing Madrox

The demon trouble didn’t end for X-Factor. An investigation led them into a conflict in L.A. with the demon, Bloodbath. In the fight, he seemed to kill Madrox.

In actuality, Madrox’s spirit was sent to a succession of alternate realities where his counterparts had died. First of all he found himself and Layla dead on their wedding night. This left him facing Wolfsbane’s daughter, Vanora, whom Layla had hired to kill them.

After dying in that reality, he found himself in one where humans were almost extinct. He was hunted by Steve Rogers, a Deathlok programmed to exterminate threats to mutantkind. Again, he died, then woke where his doppelgänger had been apprentice to Doctor Strange. He faced the Dormammu of that reality.

He eventually woke up back in his own body. To find Wolverine had assigned Havok and Polaris to lead the team. Madrox agreed to share leadership.

The team soon had to face Vanora, Deathlok, and Dormammu. They’d been gathered from their realities by Tryp the Elder. Only Vanora survived the encounter, growing more suspicious of Tryp.

Breaking Points

Regretting her earlier actions, Rahne went in search of Tier. Rictor and Shatterstar accompanied her. They tracked him down, and found Darwin trying to kill him. A vision had convinced him that the child would cause the end of the world. They got away, and Rahne left to raise the rapidly aging Tier.

Strong Guy’s lack of a soul became more apparent, causing a rift between him and Monet as he tried to woo her. After a particularly harsh argument, he left the team.

Polaris learned she’d killed her parents during an infant manifestation of her powers. Rather than Magneto being responsible, as she’d always believed. This left her in a catatonic state, even M’s telepathy unable to help her.

Banshee, already suffering visions of her dead father, sought to help Polaris. She contacted the Morrigan, an ancient Irish spirit with whom she’d recently clashed. The Morrigan appeared. She offered to surrender her role to Theresa, giving her the power to help Polaris. Theresa agreed. She became the new Morrigan, healed Polaris, and left the team.

Feeling he’d failed as a leader, Havok also left the team. Polaris stayed, believing they needed time apart. Fed up with all the bad stuff going on, Madrox asked Layla to marry him. She said yes, and they headed to Vegas without telling anyone. Their honeymoon was interrupted by the undead, of course. But they weren’t slaughtered on their wedding night, so that was something.

As soon as they returned from their honeymoon, they were caught in the team’s latest crisis. Pip had apparently been killed, his mind shunted elsewhere in self-defence. Unfortunately, the elsewhere was Monet’s body. And she had issues about losing control of her body.

Madrox and Layla were in time to help them fight off a demon army, but as soon as Pip was returned to his body he quit to get clear of M.

The Hell on Earth War

Rahne and Tier turned up, still hunted by Darwin. Madrox called his bluff, and Darwin found he was unable to murder. Before they could decide what to do with him, they were again attacked. Jezebel, Mephisto’s daughter, and Guido burst in trying to kill Tier. They failed to do it in time, and the Hell on Earth War began.

The Hell lords had fought for dominance among themselves for centuries. The powers above them tired of this, and issued an edict. When the seven billionth person walked the Earth, the Hell Lords could enter the final battle. Whichever of them killed that individual would be the winner. Tier was that seven billionth.

The six Hell Lords – Mephisto, Hela, Satannish, Satana, Pluto, and Asmodeus – manifested and attacked each other and X-Factor. Jezebel turned on her father, having tried to kill Tier to prevent the war. She helped X-Factor escape the gathered Hell Lords, but they still had to deal with them.

Pluto was the first to catch up to them, and had them on the ropes until Tier killed his avatar. By this point the other Hell Lords were attacking each other as much as hunting Tier. This didn’t help X-Factor, as Mephisto transformed Madrox into a demon army under his control. And Guido killed Monet, unaware how bad Pluto had injured her.

Mephisto defeated the other Hell Lords. He created his castle on Earth, and imprisoned the Lords within as he continued to hunt for Tier. X-Factor attacked him. Jezebel took control of Madrox to use him as an army to attack the front gate. The others snuck inside so Tier could kill the captive Hell Lords’ avatars.

They then attack Mephisto directly. He seemed to kill Shatterstar and Rictor. Before Tier could kill him, Guido ran Tier through with Mephisto’s trident, killing him. Guido became King of Hell, and used his powers to restore Monet to life. The effects of the war on Earth were erased, apart from the destruction of the X-Factor building. Only the team remembered it even happened.

The End of X-Factor

Layla recovered the still-demonic Madrox from Morocco, and got him to the abandoned farmhouse where he grew up. She was unable to change him back, and only got through to the real Jamie by revealing she was pregnant. Jamie prayed to the Morrigan. Theresa answered, transforming him and then telling them of the other members of X-Factor.

Rictor and Shatterstar weren’t killed, but shunted into the past of Mojoworld. Rictor learned Longshot was created from genetic material taken from Shatterstar. They were then shunted ahead in time to help Dazzler give birth to Longshot’s son, Shatterstar. Shatterstar used the technology to wipe Dazzler and Longshot’s memories of the birth, and sent his infant self to the future where he grew up.

Rahne found herself at the church of Madrox dupe, John Maddox’s. She arrived in time to save him from some parishioners who shot the place up. She accepted the role of deacon.

Monet and Darwin found each other in Vegas, and rejoined the Jean Grey School.

Madrox sold the X-Factor name to Harrison Snow – CEO of Serval Industry. His first recruit for the team was Polaris, after she got drunk and arrested.

Jamie and Layla retired to his family farm.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

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Advantages

The team own a building in what was the Mutanttown area of New York. A relatively Confined Headquarters.

Equipments

The team members have com devices, with beacons built into them: Com Device [BODY 05, Detect (X-Factor Com Devices): 20, Radio Communications (Scrambled): 10]

By Gareth Lewis

Source of Character: X-Factor (2006-2013), Marvel Comics

Helper(s):

Writeup completed on the 23rd of November, 2016

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