Crane of Black Ops (Image Comics)


(Colonel Donovan Crane)

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


Colonel Crane is a member of one of those many super-elite, heavily-armed, capable-of-dealing-with-superhuman military squads in the early Image Universe. He appeared in the 1996 Limited Series Black Ops.

Here are Nicolas’ vintage notes. We’d like to upgrade them at some point, but these guys are rather low-priority.


  • Real Name: Colonel Donovan J. Crane.
  • Marital Status: Widower.
  • Known Relatives: Amanda (Wife, deceased).
  • Group Affiliation: Black Ops, formerly I.O..
  • Base Of Operations: Department PSI.
  • Height: 6’4” Weight: 241 lbs.
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: Grey


Powers and Abilities

Crane has an intensive military training. First as a paratrooper, then as a Special Forces member, and last as an I.O. Black Razor.

His real strength lies in his ability to analyze a crisis situation and use the resources at hand to come out on the top.


Recruited from the Special Forces by John Lynch, Colonel Crane instantly gained command of his own Black Razor team. This team consisted of rookies, among which were Benito Santini and Cyril Fleming.

Some years later, his team (including his fiancée) was all but wiped out in a Gamorran operation involving the former Soviet Military-Intelligence General Markov. Crane resigned his commission, entering self-imposed exile in the wilderness of Montana.

My kingdom and place of exile

Years later the Black Ops, a rogue Black Razor squadron came to him. They were working blind on a mission commissioned by Lynch before his treason, and had just lost its field leader.

Upon learning that Markov was their target, an anonymous informant somewhere in I.O.’s hierarchy had advised them to contact Crane, due to his long feud with the General. And so he joined them, to get a chance at repaying Markov for his wife’s death.

They infiltrated Markov’s research complex in Estonia. They were tracked all along by I.O. and met a squad of Black Razors that tried to stop them before they could trigger an international incident. This team was led by Crane’s former recruit Fleming.


Estonian party

The Razors were forced to pull back, first because they fell for an EMP  grenade that disabled their gear, then because they were ordered out to avoid the issues resulting from a US military operation on foreign ground.

However, the Black Ops then met some resistance from the HEATERS (Cricket, Cannon Fodder, Pinpoint), a special Black Razors squad, commissioned by I.O.’s Deputy Director Catherine Kwan (surely directly responding to Craven) as reinforcement in Markov’s defense.

Then, after Craven’s death, as the interim director was close to uncover Kwan’s involvement, she ordered her HEATERS to turn against Markov. This helped the Black Ops in their task of stopping Markov’s scheme to seize control of Russia to bring back the former USSR’s might.

Markov thought that his latest Molot mecha  was operational, so he tried to send one to dispatch both Black Ops and the HEATERS. But he was betrayed by one of his scientists, who destroyed the prototype with the mad General inside.


Some time later, Crane contacted Giovanni, at Department PSI, to get their sponsorship and protection. They were send on the trail of some nanotechnology related to the Gen-Factor. They ran into Ivana Baiul and her DV8, as she was sponsoring the research to use it to boost her Gen-Actives.

They couldn’t prevent her from getting away with the goods, but they managed to trace them to their hideout. They infiltrated the complex, and won the showdown with DV8, escaping shortly before PSI ordered the sterilisation of the area.


Crane is an old timer, with grey hair and a short beard.


He always behave in a military way, speaking few words and making sure they are understood and obeyed. He strongly believes that a good operative must rely on skills only, not on complex hi-tech gimmicks.


GQ: “It’s our job to take on SPBs and win. How’re we supposed to do that wearing BDUs and shootin’ popguns ?”
Crane: “By being *smarter*, *faster* and *meaner*. It’s that simple”

Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG

Tell me more about the game stats


Dex: 06 Str: 04 Bod: 05 Motivation: Seeking Justice
Int: 08 Wil: 08 Min: 07 Occupation: Black ops field Leader
Inf: 07 Aur: 06 Spi: 08 Resources {or Wealth}: 008
Init: 025 HP: 080

Acrobatics (Climbing)*: 06, Charisma (Intimidation)*: 07, Martial Artist*: 06, Medicine (First Aid): 03, Military Sciences: 08, Thief (Stealth, Security System): 07, Vehicles (Air, Land, Water)*: 06, Weaponry: 08

Iron Nerves, Leadership, Lightning Reflexes, Sharp Eye , Military Rank (Colonel).

Department PSI (High).

Guilt, Mistrust.


  • Night-Vision Goggles [BODY 04, Ultra Vision: 05].
  • Communication Gear [BODY 04, Radio Communication: 08].
  • BULLET-PROOF VEST [BODY 06, Skin armour: 02, Limitation : Skin armour only against bladed weapons and bullets, Partial Coverage (vest)].
  • Submachine Gun + Silencer [BODY 04, Projectile weapons: 05, Ammo: 07, Telescopic Vision: 03, R#3, Advantage : Autofire, Thief (stealth): 04, Limitation: Thief (stealth) only to muffle the shots].
  • Combat knife [BODY 05, Enhance (EV): 01 (Cap is 06), Descriptor: Piercing, Slashing].
  • EMP Grenade [BODY 04, Neutralize (Gadgets): 15 Area effect, Grenade drawback].

By Nicolas Lemaçon.

Source of Character: Image (Wildstorm Universe), Black Ops miniseries.

Helper(s): Sébastien Andrivet, Roy Cowan.