Types of Origins
The character was born in the Body Type he/she has, and possessed all the Powers from birth onward (although learning to control them took time). Note: If a character is a Cyborg, he was severely deformed at birth and required immediate emergency medical and scientific aid.
The character gained his/her Powers sometime after reaching adulthood. Powers may have begun manifesting themselves sporadically during adolescence, or even childhood, but full control wasn’t achieved until maturity. Most Random Mutants are in this class. Self-Achievement: The character actively sought out a means of giving him/herself Power. The character developed the methods, procedures, equipment, or whatever permits him to possess Power. This could be through scientific endeavors (Henry Pym/ Ant Man), arcane study (Dr. Strange), or physical training (Iron Fist). Anyone can gain Powers similar to the hero’s by following this special training.
The character was given his/her Power by another being. This includes such diverse situations as being transformed (Tigra), being charged with Power (the Power Pack kids), and acquiring an item whose possession gives the character Power (Black Knight, Vindicator).
The character was caught in an experiment or procedure gone awry, with the result that the character gained Powers that were totally unexpected. Such freak conditions cannot be completely duplicated, although they can be simulated. Simulations produce slightly different results, though. Cloak and Dagger are examples of Mishap Origins. The late Sasquatch was an example of a Mishap Simulation, from trying to recreate the Gamma Blast that created the Hulk.
The character was the subject of a controlled scientific or magical experiment. Assuming that all the factors are reproduced, such a Technical Experiment should be “able to produce a steady supply of super powered characters. Unfortunately, the geniuses behind such experiments often leave inadequate notes; if something happens to the genius, the experiment is irreproducible. Dr. Reinstein, for example, never really wrote down the Super-Soldier Formula that transformed Steve Rogers into Captain America. Attempts to recreate it produced the Infinity Formula that has the simpler effect of increasing the subject’s Health, Endurance, and lifespan.
The character was born in the form he/she/it now has, that of an adult who possesses Power and/or whatever the Body Type is. Most of the Artificial Body Types belong in this class. Examples include the android Human Torch, all robots, angels, demons, and deities. Biological Exposure: The character gained Power after exposure to a special lifeform or a substance secreted by that life form. Werewolves and Bio-Vampires are common examples of this. Normal Humans are transformed into those kinds of beings after being bitten by another Werewolf or Bio-Vampire. The character can also gain Power from an experiment using bio- chemicals. For example, the late Whizzer gained his Power after consecutive injections of cobra venom and mongoose blood.
The character was transformed by exposure to an exotic element, compound, or mixture. This substance can be inhaled, ingested, injected, or just placed next to the character for it to affect him/her. The chemicals involved in these incidents react in random ways with the character’s genetic structure and produce unique results. If another person is exposed to the same chemical, the results may be different or fatal. Madcap is an example of this.
The character was exposed to a special form and Intensity of energy— anything out of the ordinary will do—and turned into his/her present self. Most of the Marvel Super Heroes from the early 1960s are examples of this. The Fantastic Four, the Hulk, and Daredevil, for examples, all received Powers after being subjected to hard radiation.
The character was once a perfectly ordinary person. Then he/she died. Something happened to the character that destroyed the old body and gave him/her a new one, complete with Power. Examples of this class include Marc Spector/Moon Knight and Arthur Douglas/Drax the Destroyer.