Dragon of Dragon's Claws (Marvel Comics UK)

Dragon 8162


Dragon’s Claws was a post-apocalyptic action series from Marvel UK, published in 1988.

I don’t think it had a significant visibility in the US.

Though it was short-lived, it was sort of cool. By the standards of these days.

The titular Dragon’s Claws are a group of champion gladiators who become sort-of-good-guys mercenaries on a dying future Earth, in the year 8,162.

I’m appending “8162” to the name of the characters for clarity. This wasn’t actually the case in the comics. This approach is based on the naming convention for Marvel’s 2099 characters.


  • Marital Status: Married.
  • Known Relatives: Tanya Ritinski (estranged wife), Michael (adoptive son).
  • Group Affiliation: Leader of Dragon’s Claws ; agent of the National Union of Retired Sports Experts.
  • Base Of Operations: What’s left of Greater Britain in the year 8162 – the difference between “Greater Britain” and Great Britain wasn’t explained but it seemed to involve colonial holdings.
  • Height: 6’1” Weight: 184 lbs. Age: 38.
  • Eyes: Blue Hair: Brown.


Earth, 8162

In 8162, Earth is broken. It is slowly drifting toward the sun for unknown reasons.

The moon has been at least partially destroyed.

Most of the large bodies of water have evaporated. This left miles and miles of beaches with a few pools of stagnant saltwater.

The animals left are few and far between.


Humanity seems to have thrown up its hands in the air and given up. There are no apparent great human goals. People just pass the time until they die.

Most countries have broken up in small kingdoms, varying from the high-tech one-building self-contained town to Mad Max-esque thugs roaming aimlessly about.

Social unrest and riots are a constant problem in major cities. The police forces seem outmatched, outstretched and out of sleep.


Fancy a game ?

There is something that looks more or less like a planetary ruling body – the World Development Council. Its influence seems uneven. In some places it’s the actual government, in some places people have barely heard of it. The W.D.C.’s approach to global unrest was classic : panem et circenses .

Thus was born the Game. Originally it was a sort of team paintball competition. It gradually became a hugely popular bloodsport. It continued to degenerate until it was a free-for-all.

The best team in the tournament was the widely popular Dragon’s Claws. Another favourite and close competitor were the Evil Dead. Unlike the Dragon’s Claws, the ED racked a body count in the hundreds.

As the Game began to cause more unrest than it pacified, the WDC cancelled it. They created the National Union of Retired Sport Experts (NURSE) to support and appease ex-players. They certainly didn’t want the dogs of war to be let loose.

Powers and Abilities

Dragon is :

  • A veteran of more than 20 years as a Game player and as a merc.
  • A formidable soldier, commando, tactician and strategist.
  • Quite probably the best small-unit leader left on Earth.
  • An expert with devious strategies, surprise moves, dirty tricks and thinking outside the box.
  • A redoubtable hand-to-hand fighter, a crack shot, and an expert with a large number of weapons and vehicles.

Another key asset is that he’s an exceptional leader. Without Dragon, the Claws are a pathetic rabble of psychotic and/or irresponsible misfits. With him they are the most efficient combat unit on the planet.


Dragon’s ability to predict his opponent’s moves borders on the infernal. Every apparent weak point in his strategy is likely to be both a feint and a trap. This works as long as he has enough information to reason with and a few seconds to bark orders.

He will gladly :

  1. Use misdirection. His Omni-gadget  is often an hologram projector.
  2. Have his enemies fight each other.
  3. Deploy a bunch of booby traps.


One classic Dragon move was luring Slaughterhouse to Dragon’s sniper perch, on a girder in a building under construction.

Slaughterhouse being much more acrobatic and faster than even Dragon, he happily engaged Dragon in close combat on the girder. He did not pause to think that it was a stupid position for Dragon to put himself in.

Dragon tackled him and threw himself and Slaughterhouse into a 30-stories fall, the move blindsiding Slaughterhouse. Dragon’s fall was stopped after barely one meter by the tether discreetly attached to his ankle. Slaughterhouse’s wasn’t.


Dragon was originally a nameless boy found running wild in the slums. He couldn’t tell who were his parents, or whence he came from.

He was raised in the World Development Council’s Trent Orphanage, and named “Dragon” after his fiery temper and uncontrollable nature.

As a young man, he found an outlet for his energy in sports. The lad excelled at a wide variety of athletic and combat disciplines.

Cunning rather than academically brilliant, Dragon had little use for schooling. He only seemed interested in pursuing a life based around the newly created Game – the WDC‘ s pacifying “hunter and hunted” combat sport.


His first game as field runner for the Courtland Rangers ended in tragedy. Dragon quit, dropping off the radar.

He re-emerged in the African Colonies in 8148. There, he led a hardline team of ex-mercenaries on combat drops in the war-torn remains of Sudan.

Injured in 8149, Dragon was ferried back to Greater Britain by his childhood friend, Titus Carling. Carling — now head of the vast Texcorp Conglomerate — saw to Dragon’s convalescence and re-integration into society.

Master of the Game

Once more, it was the Game that fired Dragon’s enthusiasm. He set about forming his own team over the next few years. By 8155, the Dragon’s Claws were competing for the championship.

The Claws reached Division Three (Rogue League) before their blocker, Megaton, quit due to disagreements with Dragon.

The recruitment of Steel, in 8157, took them to the top of the League Of Nations. His roster was :

Dragon took the Claws out of competitive events in 8158, after the Miami bloodbath.

Buy the farm

Through N.U.R.S.E., Dragon was relocated to a small farm on the outskirts of London.

In 8159, Dragon met and married Tanya Ritinski. He adopted her son, Michael, as his own. At this point, the Game was stopped by the WDC, since it had gotten out of hand.

Life on the farm was good. But Dragon still craved combat – which his wife sensed, and loathed.

The vermin have inherited the earth

After the Game was stopped, marauding teams of players with the same lust for combat as Dragon’s became a major problem for law enforcement.

The worst were outright outlaws, criminals and terrorists. The primary example was the former #2 team, the Evil Dead. The Evil Dead could easily defeat ten times their number in militarised police.

N.U.R.S.E. then organised a sort of a SWAT team to handle ex-Game teams. They offered Dragon the chance to lead it. But Dragon turned down the offer, for his wife’s sake.

No rest for the wicked

However, he was soon caught in an altercation with ex-Game C-listers, the Wildcats. The Wildcats followed him home and attacked the farm.

Although he managed to kill them all, the damage was done. Dragon’s addiction to action was now even stronger than he was. He agreed to N.U.R.S.E.’s offer, and was rejected by his family.

N.U.R.S.E. reunited Dragon with the Claws. The fearsome champs were back in action.


His odd headgear *might* be a reference to Star Wars character Dengar .


A smart, reserved NCO  and veteran. He likes to see his orders followed and his team focused.

He sees neither his team nor himself as murderers. Dragon is usually reluctant to use lethal force unless the alternative wouldn’t make sense.

Dragon is an ethical man. He prefers to make sure that he works for the morally superior side. He won’t agree to have the Claws take down people who aren’t criminals of some sort. This sort of good will is rare in the apathetic ninth millennium. He’s seen as being unusual for it.

Dragon has tried to live a peaceful life as a farmer. But his need for action, fighting and adrenaline is pathological, physical, addictive. He craves it, even when it goes against his best judgement, harnessed willpower and love for his wife and son.


“Move out, Claws. Be fast, clean and mean.”

“Trouble ? Son, you don’t know what trouble is.”

“We are here as authorised agents of the World Development Council and N.U.R.S.E.. We have unlimited sanction in this matter.”

Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG

Tell me more about the game stats


Dex: 07 Str: 04 Bod: 05 Motivation: Thrill
Int: 06 Wil: 06 Min: 06 Occupation: Agent of NURSE
Inf: 06 Aur: 04 Spi: 06 Resources {or Wealth}: 005
Init: 023 HP: 050

Acrobatics: 05, Charisma (Intimidation): 07, Martial artist: 06, Military science: 07, Thief (Stealth): 07, Vehicles (Air, Land, Water): 05, Weaponry: 08

Credentials (NURSE, Medium), Expertise (The Game’s rules and teams), Leadership, Lightning Reflexes, Financial Backer (Rich – NURSE expense account), Scholar (Tactics).

Titus Carling (Low), Dragon’s Claws (High).

MIA toward Thrill of Adventure, Public ID.


  • BODY ARMOUR [BODY 07, Skin armour: 02, Limitation: Skin Armour is Partial (Long coat)].
  • Shortsword [BODY 06, Enhance (EV): 02 (cap is 05), Descriptor: Slashing, piercing].
  • Assault Rifle [BODY 05, Projectile weapons: 07, Telescopic vision: 02, Ammo: 10, R#02, Advantage: Autofire].
  • Anti-personnel mine [BODY 03, EV 12 (Area of Effect 0 AP), Grenade drawback].
  • Grenade [BODY 01, EV 07 (Area of effect 1 P), Grenade drawback].
  • Omni-gadget 5 APs (ABC).

Game Stats — DC Adventures RPG

Tell me more about the game stats

Dragon 8162 — Averaged PL 9.6

03 03 04 04 06 03 02 02


Just the right counter ● 20 points ● Descriptor: Technology
Variable (advanced, compact infantry equipment) 4 (Slow, Unreliable (five uses)).

Combat Advantages

Agile Feint, Chokehold, Close Attack 3, Defensive Roll 2, Evasion, Improved criticals 1 (Shorter blades), Improved criticals 1 (Firearms), Improved defense, Improved trip, Ranged Attack 4

Other Advantages

Assessment, Benefit 1 (N.U.R.S.E. Officer), Benefit 1 (N.U.R.S.E. expense account), Equipment 8, Improved initiative, Inspire, Leadership, Move-by action, Redirect, Seize Initiative, Set-up, Teamwork.


Acrobatics 3 (+7), Athletics 5 (+8), Close combat (Shorter blades) 3 (+12), Close combat (Unarmed) 2 (+11), Deception 4 (+6), Expertise (Commando) 8 (+11), Expertise (Game lore) 7 (+10), Expertise (Tactics & ruses de guerre) 11 (+14), Insight 4 (+6), Intimidation 5 (+7), Perception 5 (+7), Persuasion 3 (+5), Ranged combat (Firearms) 4 (+12), Stealth 6 (+10), Technology 4 (+7) (Limited 2 to Operating, Demolitions), Vehicles 3 (+7 – Quirk – no Space).


Body armour (Protection 3).
Short sword (Damage 2 Slashing, Improved critical 1).
Assault rifle.
Fragmentation grenades.


Initiative +8
Unarmed +11, Close, Damage 3.
Short sword +12, Close, Damage 5, Crit 18-20.
Assault rifle +12, Ranged Multiattack 5, Crit 19-20.


Dodge 11 Fortitude 07
Parry 11 Toughness 03*/05/08**
Will 09

* Without Defensive Roll.
** With Defensive Roll and Body Armour.


  • Adrenaline Dragon is addicted to the rush of fighting.
  • Idoru Dragon was a star in the hugely popular Game. People will recognise him.

Powers Levels

  • Trade-off areas. Attack/Effect PL 9, Dodge/Toughness PL 10, Parry/Toughness PL 10, Fort/Will PL 8.
  • Points total 162. Abilities 48, Defences 23, Skills 36, Powers 0, Devices 20, Advantages 35. Equiv. PL 11.


The “master of tactics and dirty tricks” angle of the character is well-supported by the Advantages in M&M.

By Sébastien Andrivet.

Source of Character: Dragon’s Claws comics (Marvel UK).

Helper(s): Roy Cowan.