Shellshock (Marvel Comics) (Fantastic Four enemy)


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


Shellshock is a minor, perennially obscure Marvel villain. He has been around since 1967 and never made much of an impression.


  • Real Name: Gary Buser.
  • Marital Status: Unrevealed.
  • Known Relatives: None.
  • Group Affiliation: Former employee of the Psycho Man, former partner of Live Wire.
  • Base Of Operations: New York City ; for a while a hidden base in the Caribbean.
  • Height: 5’8½” Weight: 160 lbs.
  • Eyes: Brown Hair: Brown


Powers and Abilities

Shellshock is a vaguely competent thug and firearms specialist. He appears to be in good shape.

He also seems to have some skill in technology, since he enhanced (or at least rebuilt) the weapon provided by the Psycho-Man.

Shock blaster

His gun, the “shock blaster”, fires explosive bullets or miniature hypervelocity shells of some sort. It also can quickly switch to sophisticated special-purpose projectiles as the situation requires.

Since the gun is not that much larger than some of its ammunition, it is likely that the projectiles are kept compressed in size using Microverse technology before they are fired. However, on one occasion the special ammunition was shown to be a barrel attachment.

Shellshock later rebuilt the shock blaster in an odd insectile configuration. This gun supposedly had twice the power of the old one.



Gary Buser was one of three goons recruited by the Psycho Man during his first foray on our Earth, along with Ivan the gunman and Live Wire (Rance Preston). The three enforcers were given special weapons. They were to assist and protect the Psycho-Man as he assembled a giant psycho-ray to conquer the Earth.

Shellshock and Live Wire already knew each other, having worked together as ’second-story men’ in New York City.

The plan of the Psycho-Man attracted the attention of no less than the Royal Inhuman Family, the Fantastic Four *and* the Black Panther (T’Challa). Although the powerful Psycho Man gave a good fight, his gunsels were flattened within but a few Phases. The managed to flee with their special weapons, though.

The indie life

Years later, in 1980, Shellshock and Live Wire cased the apartment of famous sculptress Alicia Masters, the Thing’s girlfriend. They passed themselves for movers and absconded with valuable sculptures, but ran right into the Thing. The Thing crushed Buser’s shock blaster before he could pull the trigger.

Shellshock firing his gun

Live Wire left to join the Circus of Crime, but Shellshock rebuild his gun. He also made himself a Silver-Age Green-Lantern-villain-ish costume.

Learning that the Thing was being hospitalised, Shellshock attacked. But he soon discovered that dozens of villains reacted in the same way. Friends of the Thing came running to prevent the attacks, and Shellshock was defeated by Ant-Man (Scott Lang).

In 1986, Shellshock was one of the minor villains who attended the crisis meeting at the Bar With No Name to discuss the threat the assassin Scourge posed to their ilk. Scourge infiltrated the meeting and killed everyone there, including Shellshock.


See illustrations.


Like the other Psycho Man flunkies he is greedy, overconfident in the power of his special weapon, and aggressive. He thinks of himself as a much bigger threat than he is – but that actually helps since it means he remains calm in combat.

His overconfidence seldom causes tactical blunders, just a lack of realisation about the power level of his opponents.


“My gun can also fire miniaturised hunter missiles — missiles which can never miss !”

“Freeze, fools — and face the power of Shellshock !”

“Back, brute ! I still wield the weapon here !”

“I hope the Thing recognizes me — before I beat his face into an orange omelet !”

Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG

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Dex: 03 Str: 03 Bod: 04 Motivation: Mercenary
Int: 04 Wil: 04 Min: 05 Occupation: Mercenary
Inf: 05 Aur: 04 Spi: 04 Resources {or Wealth}: 004
Init: 012 HP: 015

Gadgetry: 04, Vehicles (Land): 04, Weaponry (Firearms): 04, Weaponry (Shock Blaster): 06

Expertise (The technology of the Shock Blaster).

Underworld (Low), Live Wire (Low).

None demonstrated.


  • Shock Blaster heavy pistol Mk1 [BODY 05, Projectile weapon: 08, Ammo: 20]. This weapon was replaced by :
  • Shock Blaster heavy pistol Mk2 [BODY 05, Projectile weapon: 09, Ammo: 15].
  • Both versions of the Shock Blaster can also launch the following specialised ammunition, with just a switch of the fire selector:
    • Hunter missiles (x2) [DEX 08 BODY 02, EV 06 (Area of Effect 0 APs), Flight: 10, Grenade drawback, Limitation : Flight can only be sustained for eight Phases (-2), Grenade Drawback].
    • Concussive ammunition (Bashing damage – no other in-game difference).
    • Hi-Explosive Shell (x1) [BODY 02, EV 12, Range: 03, R#02, Grenade Drawback].
    • ’Bubble gum‘ shell (x2) [BODY 02, Snare: 18, Bonuses & Limitations: Snare has no AV (-0 or -1, use Weaponry instead) ; Snare is Sticky ; the material used for Snare has a Partial Attack Vulnerability toward cutting attacks (effective RV is 08), Grenade Drawback].
    • Gas grenade (x2) [BODY 02, Knockout gas: 07, R#02, Grenade Drawback].
    • Shellshock mentioned something about microwave blasts, but nothing of this kind was actually demonstrated.
  • MASK [BODY 05, Sealed systems: 05. Note that the rest of the costume is not Sealed]. Shellshock is once seen standing in dissipating knockout gas without discomfort, so we’ll assume filters in his mask. This likely only applies to when he wears his yellow costume.

Design notes

Due to lack of data, bits of the writeup are by necessity speculative. Such as the ammo capacity of the Shock Blasters, some of Shellshock’s Attributes, etc..

By Sébastien Andrivet.

Source of Character: Fantastic Four Annual v1 #5 (1967), Marvel Two-in-One v1 #70 and 96.