City of Heroes

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Cover of Dark Horse promotional comic

(This article deals with the comic series. For more about the MMO, see City of Heroes MMO.)'

City of Heroes is title for several different comic book series based on the City of Heroes MMO game.

There were three official comic books licensed and approved by NCSoft/Cryptic Studios to help promote the MMO game published by Dark Horse, Blue King, and Top Cow. Each of these comics were then uploaded to the MMO website for people to view for free.

In addition, there were two fan-created comics by ChaseArcanum that tied into the comic series enough for NCSoft to include on their website and thus be considered cannon.

Dark Horse Special

Dark Horse Special
City of Heroes
Author: Richard Dakan, Rick Zombo
Author Aliases: '
Games: N/A
Genre: action
Series Type: one-shot special
Date Premiered: 09/2002
Number of Issues: 1
Date of Last Issue: 09/2002
Average Issue Length: 19
Main Cast
War Witch, Apex, Thunder-Clap
Programs Used
One-issue promotional comic from Dark Horse Comics

The Dark Horse "City of Heroes" comic was a one-shot promotional issue introducing new players to the City of Heroes universe.

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The story follows the arrival of a new hero to Paragon City named Thunder-Clap as he accidentally makes his way into an unauthorized Hazard Zone and befriends two other heroes, War Witch and Apex, as they face various villains including the Freakshow and the 5th Column. This is the first City of Heroes comic and includes a special appearance from Statesman.



Blue King Studios

Blue King Studios
City of Heroes
Author: Rick Dakan, Brandon Mckinney, Moose Bauman, Neil Hendrick
Author Aliases: '
Games: N/A
Genre: '
Series Type: '
Date Premiered: 06/2004
Number of Issues: 12
Date of Last Issue: 05/2005
Average Issue Length: '
Main Cast
Apex, War Witch, Horus
Programs Used

The Blue King series is the second City of Heroes comic book adaptation and the first ongoing comic series.

The series focuses on the characters War Witch and Apex following their appearance in the Dark Horse one-shot issue, who are now roommates in a Steel Canyon apartment, and introduces us to the mysterious character known as Horus. Although certain in-game characters such as Back Alley Brawler make their appearance, the series focuses its attention on the more "average" hero as they deal with the various challenges in Paragon City.


# 1 Undead in the Big City: Part 1

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Trouble comes literally crashing into the Steel Canyon apartment of War Witch and Apex.

# 2 Undead in the Big City: Part 2

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Apex and War Witch help Horus find out what happened to him. Unfortunately that also means dealing with the Vahzilok.

# 3 Dread Carnivale: Part 1

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It's party time for heroes! But between the Tsoo and the Carnival of Shadows, things aren't that festive. Special guest appearance by the Back Alley Brawler.

# 4 Dread Carnivale: Part 2

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The heroes take the battle to the Carnival of Shadows.

# 5 Jury Duty: Part 1

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It had to happen! It's the worst thing that a superhero could ever get in the mail: a notice for JURY DUTY!

# 6 Jury Duty: Part 2

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Apex is torn between doing his job as a superhero and his duties as a member of the jury. Which will he end up having to do?

# 7 Jury Duty: Part 3

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Going against better judgement, Apex leads a team of heroes to save the day... but at what cost?

# 8 Training Day

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Apex's sister starts working for Crey Industries, and Apex is under house arrest!

# 9 Clothes Make The Man

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Finally free from house arrest, Apex and War Witch raid a 5th Column base and Horus infiltrates Crey Industries... with disasterous results for everyone.

# 10 The Resurrection Man

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Horus remembers everything that happened to him after the Rikti Invasion as Apex and War Witch are captured by the 5th Column. Special guest appearance by THE WEEVIL!

# 11 Welcome the Kheldians

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Requiem has killed War Witch's coven, and now the 5th Column leader is out to get her. But Requiem also has to deal with the strange force that has been awakened inside Horus. What is thier connection? Special appearance by Back Alley Brawler.

# 12 Best Issue Ever

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(Final Issue)

Back Alley Brawler leads the heroes to their final battle against Requiem and the 5th Column, but not everyone will make it through to the end. Who will survive?

Top Cow Comics

Top Cow Comics
City Of Heroes
Author: Mark Waid, David Nakayama, Sean Fish, Matt Miller
Author Aliases: Noble Savage, Manticore, Positron
Games: N/A
Genre: action
Series Type: monthly
Date Premiered: 05/2005
Number of Issues: 20
Date of Last Issue: 08/2007
Average Issue Length: 36
Main Cast
Manticore, Sister Psyche, Statesman, Positron, Synapse, Back Alley Brawler, Ms. Liberty
Programs Used
Top Cow was previously a part of Image Comics

The Top Cow series run is the third City of Heroes comic book adaptation and the second ongoing comic series.

This series focuses on the in-game signature characters of the Freedom Phalanx, and specifically on the interactions between Manticore and Sister Psyche. Several in-game heroes make guest appearances, including War Witch from the Blue King incarnation. Several of the characters and storylines in this series would eventually be incorporated into the MMO itself as part of the Ouroboros Flashback missions. The series ends just prior to the Second Rikti Invasion.


The series is divided into a series of story arcs or storylines.

Hard Crash

Although not given an acutal storyline name by the artists, the first three issues deals with Arachnos and Lord Recluse striking hard against the heroes of Paragon City. It also reveals the origins of both Statesman and Lord Recluse.

#01 Hard Crash: Part 1

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Lord Recluse strikes a devastating blow on Paragon City as his Arachnos agents deprive the heroes of their abilities. Demoralized and powerless, it's up to Manticore to bring the team back from oblivion.

#02 Hard Crash: Part 2

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Manticore and Sister Psyche continue their search to reunite the Freedom Phalanx as they scour the city looking for Statesman and a way to get their powers back. But in order to do that, someone has to die.

#03 Hard Crash: Part 3

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Statesman is dead! But will his death bring back the powers needed in Paragon City to thwart an all-out invasion by Lord Recluse and Arachnos? And how did Recluse know the secret to Statesman's abilities in the first place?

Smoke and Mirrors

The first "official" storyline of the series deals with the Freedom Phalanx as they meet with old enemies and encounter an old hero.

#04 Smoke and Mirrors: Part 1

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The Freedom Phalanx must turn to an old hero of the day in order to save the world from the threat of the Circle of Thorns.

#05 Smoke and Mirrors: Part 2

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Little children, spandex supermodels, and a hero from the past... what do these things have to do with the mystery of Oranbega?

#06 Smoke and Mirrors: Part 3

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The heroes face their worst nightmares as one of them makes the ultimate sacrifice.


"Bloodlines" focuses on Manticore's past and marks the return of the Back Alley Brawler (last seen in Issue #12 of the Blue King Studios incarnation) from his "retired" status.

#07 Bloodlines: Part 1

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Manticore is in the hospital. Who put him there? And what does the Back Alley Brawler have to do with it?

#08 Bloodlines: Part 2

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Manticore's life takes a turn for the worst, forcing Sister Psyche to risk her own life to save him, and Back Alley Brawler discover that the culprit is someone from his past.

#09 Bloodlines: Part 3

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Back Alley Brawler is back in costume again as he hunts down Protean. But with Manticore and Sister Psyche dead, who will save him?

Trading Places

Following "Bloodlines", Manticore treads down a path nobody would ever expect. His actions set the stage for the in-game Alignment System.

#10 Trading Places: Part 1

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For his actions in "Bloodlines", Manticore has been kicked off of the Freedom Phalanx! So what is a hero to do? Will he join the Vindicators? Or will he do something that nobody would ever suspect?

#11 Trading Places: Part 2

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Say it ain't so! Manticore has joined Arachnos! And his first mission is to kidnap Sister Psyche! Will he actually turn on his former teammates? And not everyone is happy with Statesman's decision to kick Manticore off the Freedom Phalanx in the first place. What happens when the Phalanx ends up in a fight with their former sidekicks, the Vindicators?

#12 Trading Places: Part 3

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Lord Recluse finally reveals his plan involving Sister Psyche. Can the Freedom Phalanx and the Vidicators put aside their differences and work to defend Paragon City from the threat of Arachnos? Special guest appearances by War Witch and many City of Heroes player characters.


"Awakenings" introduces readers to W.I.S.D.O.M., the Pacific-based superhero team that were seen in a special City of Heroes video to promote the Asian launch of the MMO.

#13 Awakenings: Part 1

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An old friend of Statesman comes to Paragon City, bringing with him his own team of heroes as they unlock the secrets of the Banished Pantheon.

#14 Awakenings: Part 2

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The Freedom Phalanx must team up with members of W.I.S.D.O.M. as they fight off a prison break fueled by the mystical powers of the Banished Pantheon.

#15 Awakenings: Part 3

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The heroes must work with the Circle of Thorns to defend Oranbega from the threat of the Banished Pantheon as an ancient evil is awakened.


"Praetoria" is another storyline that was not "officially named" by the writers, introducing the readers to the "evil universe" which we know today as "Praetoria".

#16 Dark Mirror

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It's Hero versus Praetorian as Statesman leads his team to the Praetorian universe to face off against his evil counterpart, Tyrant. But why are they there in the first place?

#17 Safeguard

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With the Freedom Phalanx off in the Praetorian Universe, it's up to Ms. Liberty and the Vindicators to keep Paragon City safe. Can this supergroup of former sidekicks stand up to the challenge?

#18 Ladies' Night

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Statesman and the Freedom Phalanx are back from the Praetorian Universe, and they brought Ms. Liberty's evil counterpart with them. Can Dominatrix play nice with the Vindicators as they pay a visit to the Pocket D nightclub?

Passing The Torch

The final issues of this series deal with the return of an old Freedom Phalanx member, the return of the U.N. defensive force known as the Vanguard, and it serves as the prelude to the Second Rikti Invasion.

#19 Passing The Torch: Part 1

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Dark Watcher, one of the original founding members of the Freedom Phalanx, is back. And he brings a dire warning to the Freedom Phalanx: Stay away from the Rikti! Meanwhile the Vanguard are looking to bolster their ranks, and they want Manticore. Will he join them? Special guest appearances by Ascendant, Castle, and War Witch.

#20 Passing the Torch: Part 2

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(Final Issue)

INVASION begins here! Hero 1 is back! Or is he? The Vanguard know, only they aren't talking. Will they at least help the Freedom Phalanx or will this last issue also be their last hurrah?

ChaseArcanum Specials

ChaseArcanum Specials
City of Heroes
Author: ChaseArcanum
Author Aliases: '
Games: N/A
Genre: '
Series Type: '
Date Premiered: '
Number of Issues: 2
Date of Last Issue: '
Average Issue Length: '
Main Cast
Programs Used

ChaseArcanum created a few special comics using in-game screen images that helped introduce and guide players through new several major updates and/or events. The developers deemed these stories to be special enough to be included on the comic page of the website and therefore are considered cannon.


#1 Wedding

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Happy Valentine's Day! It's the event of the decade as Freedom Phalanx members Sister Psyche and Manticore are finally married! And everyone is invited. Wait... "everyone"?

#2 Guide to Issue 12: The Midnight Hour

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Chase guides the player community through the new Cimerora zone, as well as highlight new Villain Epic Archetypes. But with all of those new villains around her, will Chase make it back alive?


All comics listed on this page are in PDF format and are availible for free.


Badge ArchiveProject.png This series has been restored as part of the Archive Project.