Art from the variant cover for X-Force vol. 3 #6 (2008).
Art by Clayton Crain.
Publication information
PublisherMarvel Comics
First appearanceX-Men #52 (May 1996)
Created byScott Lobdell
Pascual Ferry
In-story information
Alter egoSebastion Gilberti
Team affiliationsPurifiers
Friends of Humanity
Operation: Zero Tolerance
Humanity's Last Stand
Notable aliasesSebastion Gilberti, Nicolas Hunter, Master Mold, Arnold Rodriguez, Template, The Oracle
AbilitiesA mystical fusion of Master Mold and Nimrod;
  • Immunity to telepathic probes and mutant abilities
  • Adaptation
  • Technoforming
  • Ability to turn people into Prime Sentinels
  • Command of other Sentinels
  • Energy manipulation
  • Teleportation
  • Chronokinesis
  • Superhuman strength and durability
  • Flight

Bastion is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. The character was created by Scott Lobdell and Pascual Ferry and first made a cameo appearance in X-Men #52 (May 1996) while his first full appearance was in The Uncanny X-Men #333 (June 1996).[1]

Fictional character biography

Operation: Zero Tolerance

Main article: Operation: Zero Tolerance

Bastion is a mysterious man named Sebastion Gilberti who had risen to power in a relatively short time in the U.S. Government and began assembling the international anti-mutant strike force Operation: Zero Tolerance (OZT). When the X-Men learned about the existence of OZT some months before the operation became public, Gambit and Phoenix, acting on information, snuck into an OZT meeting being held at the Pentagon to learn more about the program and its leader Bastion, but did not come out with much. Bastion showed that he was more than met the eye as Phoenix could not read his mind and Bastion easily identified the two X-Men hidden among representatives of various foreign intelligence agencies interested in supporting OZT.[2]

When Professor X voluntarily turned himself in after the Onslaught event, Bastion confined him in an OZT facility along with the artificially-created mutant Mannites which, it was later revealed, allowed Bastion to take direct control over the Xavier Institute for Higher Learning. It also allowed Bastion to gain possession of the Xavier Protocols, a list of files containing information on killing the X-Men. Bastion also killed a Daily Bugle reporter named Nick Bandouveris, who was going to report on Graydon Creed's history[3] and later Bastion himself succeeded in capturing Jubilee and taking her to the OZT base in New Mexico.[4]

As the OZT attempted to reconfigure the Sentinel force assembled by Project: Wideawake, Bastion deemed most of them outdated. Instead, Bastion was able to develop a new type of Sentinel, the Prime Sentinels. Graydon's death[5] was the last ammunition needed to initiate Bastion's OZT, which attacked mutants everywhere. The operation soon targeted and succeeded in capturing some members of the X-Men.[6][7]

Bastion also tries to buy off J. Jonah Jameson directly with all the available information he has managed to gather and decrypt on the outlaw X-Men and their associates. However, Jameson reveals that he has already been working on his own story for quite some time and invites Bastion to see what he has so far. When Bastion sees nothing, Jameson points out that Bastion has managed to ingratiate, intimidate, and dominate his way into a position of power in over a dozen countries. Yet there is no evidence of his existence. To Jameson, this means the greatest story to follow is Bastion himself. He also implies that Bastion was behind the disappearance of Nick Bandouveris and this means Bastion would kill to keep his secrets. Jameson then burns the data disk and orders Bastion out of his office and warns that he will see him charged with Nick's murder.[8]

After learning the nature of the Prime Sentinels, the President was convinced by Senator Robert Kelly and Henry Peter Gyrich to suspend Bastion's operations. Bastion was captured by S.H.I.E.L.D., with help from Iceman.


While in government custody, more mysteries surrounding Bastion were discovered, but before a further investigation could be made, Bastion managed to escape and returned to the home of his mother figure, Rose Gilberti. However, she is accidentally killed by the authorities which sends Bastion into a rage and returns to the former OZT facility where Cable is fighting Machine Man, who has lost touch with his humanity. Bastion makes contact with the Master Mold unit which he had created the Prime Sentinels. Master Mold is drained of its energy as Bastion is transformed into a Nimrod unit.[9]

Being transformed, allowed Bastion's memories to be unblocked in the process and as it turns out Bastion had not been born human at all but started life out as two separate beings: the Sentinel Master Mold, and the highly advanced Sentinel Nimrod from an alternate future. While posing as a human construction worker, Nimrod unearthed a module from Master Mold. As soon as Nimrod made physical contact with the module, Master Mold's programming began to co-opt Nimrod's. Shortly after, during a conflict with the X-Men, the two of them, along with the X-Man Rogue, were blasted through the Siege Perilous, a mystical crystal capable of judging any who pass through it and reincarnating them into a new life commensurate in quality with their previous life. It was the Siege Perilous that was responsible for merging Nimrod and Master Mold into a single being with no memory of his past. Bastion was eventually found by Rose Gilberti who took him in and taught him human kindness. However, unbeknown to him, when Bastion began to hear about America's mutant problem, his mutant-termination directives were re-activated. He abandoned Rose and sought out high-profile mutant critic Graydon Creed and his Friends of Humanity. After regaining its identity as a Sentinel, Bastion attempts to lead another crusade against mutants by turning Machine Man into a Sentinel Supreme, but Machine Man and Cable were able to defeat him.[10] He was returned to government custody, only to be beheaded later by Apocalypse's Horseman of Death.[11]


Bastion's remains were eventually found by a former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent named Mainspring who headed a project called the Gatekeepers, whose goal is to study and destroy Phalanx technology. Bastion was, however, able to co-opt and integrate itself with one of the Gatekeeper's bodies and used it to attack the techno-organic hero Warlock and his allies, being eventually defeated.[12] Mainspring was able to strip away the layers of Bastion's programming to reveal the original Master Mold's source code and, using the alien transmode virus he was infected with, rewrote Bastion's programming, transforming him into Template.[13] The virus soon took complete control of Template and forced him to construct a Babel Spire on Earth to signal the alien Technarchy. To oppose them, Mainspring destroyed himself along with Template, while Warlock and Wolfsbane managed to destroy the Babel Spire.[14]

Sometime later, Carol Danvers contacted the X-Men about the current whereabouts of the remains of Bastion/Template. The X-Men sent Shadowcat, Wolverine, and Gambit to break into the government facility, intending to reclaim their stolen computer files. While there, Template showed the three X-Men false holograms of events and lies about their teammates. The X-Men eventually got their files, but they were left with doubts and fears about their teammates.[15]


Following the events of the Messiah Complex event, the fundamentalist Purifiers assaulted a heavily defended SHIELD installation, breaching the tight security with the aid of several double agents within the organization and recovered Bastion's head. At one of their churches, the Purifiers attached the head to the body of the Nimrod unit recovered from Forge's Aerie, returning Bastion to life. Immediately after his activation, the mutant-hunting robot alerts the Purifiers to the presence of the new X-Force.[16] After accessing Nimrod's database, Bastion concludes that the X-Men are the greatest mutant threat to the Purifiers' objectives in this timeline or any other and that there is no terrestrial force in existence that could guarantee the elimination of the X-Men. However, he reveals that he has found something that could: Magus.[17]

It was later revealed that what Bastion discovered at the bottom of the ocean was not the real Magus, but one of his offspring in a mindless state. Bastion rewrote its programming and infected Donald Pierce and the Leper Queen, the recovered techno-organic remains of Cameron Hodge and Steven Lang, as well as the corpses of Bolivar Trask, Graydon Creed, and Reverend William Stryker with the Technarch transmode virus, declaring them to be the future of humanity and the end of mutantkind.[18]

His first move was to capture several mutants and inject them with a strain of the Legacy Virus to cause their powers to go berserk and kill themselves and thousands of humans. This would compel the United Nations to form a Mutant Response Division, which is successful, despite X-Force's efforts.[19]

Bastion also had Pierce act as his mole inside the X-Men's headquarters, all the while building several structures that surround Utopia.[20]

Second Coming

Main article: X-Men: Second Coming

Bastion is the primary antagonist in the X-Men: Second Coming storyline. He is seen with Steven Lang, Cameron Hodge, and the revived Bolivar Trask, William Stryker, and Graydon Creed, stating that their forces are assembled and at his disposal. Bastion tells them that the Mutant Messiah has returned and gives them orders to kill her.[21] Later, Bastion attempts to kill Hope on his own, but he is confronted by Rogue and then severely damaged when Nightcrawler sacrifices himself. When rebooting, Bastion takes on much of Nimrod's old appearance, but is finally destroyed towards the end of the crossover when Hope manifests a variety of the current X-Men's mutant powers and obliterates him.[22]

X-Men: Blue

Despite his apparent destruction, Bastion had survived the attack by activating, at the last second, his temporal drives and shunted himself into the future. However, Bastion had suffered catastrophic damage from Hope's assault and the time-shift had corrupted and compromised his systems. Arriving when mutants were being faced with extinction due to the Terrigenesis cloud, Bastion decided to re-dedicate himself to protecting mutants, assembling, and reprogramming a wave of standard sentinels. He eventually returned to the present and was soon confronted by the time-displaced X-Men which confirm that Bastion's actual goal is simply to preserve mutants until their population rises to a level where he can destroy them all himself. The team try to fight him but Bastion instead just left them and retreat with his Sentinels.[23]

In the aftermath of Hydra takeover of the United States of America under the leadership of a Cosmic Cube-altered Captain America, Bastion seemingly started to work with Miss Sinister, Emma Frost and Havok to use Mothervine on a global scale.[24] Bastion went with Havok to take control of an army of Prime Sentinels; since his programming was unrecognizable by them, they identified him as a threat despite his role in their creation. Bastion continued to survey the development and growth of the Mothervine to continue mutant repopulation, much to the chagrin of Emma Frost.[25] After Sebastian Shaw failed in his attempt to kill Magneto to gain a role in the Mothervine plot, Bastion was present to negotiate with and later fight the Master of Magnetism, simultaneously unleashing a wave of Prime Sentinels to finally release Mothervine under Havok's order; Magento was able to escape by using a vial of Mutant Growth Hormone and throwing a lighthouse at the group, fleeing in the chaos.[26]

Thanks to Bastion's efforts, both humans and mutants began to experience accelerated mutations through exposure to the Mothervine.[27] A group of mutants, led by Polaris, managed to infiltrate the Mothervine group's hideout once Mothervine was already active, with Bastion detecting their presence and alerting the rest of the group; Bastion incapacitated the daughter of Magneto when she refused Havok's offer to join them, and they were imprisoned as a result.[28] A traitorous Emma, disillusioned by the Mothervine plot, freed Polaris and her team after overseeing an experiment by Miss Sinister on Jimmy Hudson, and they made their way to the inner circle's meeting room. At this point, Magneto had discovered the mutant Elixir, who was capable of reversing the Mothervine mutations and was taken across the world to stop the rampancy, to the notice of Havok and Bastion. Emma and Polaris managed to break into their meeting, and Bastion began fighting them off. Ultimately, he was caught off-guard by the arrival of Xorn, who absorbed him into a wormhole and seemingly destroyed them both.[29]

Powers Cybernetic Body: As a cybernetic life form he possesses all of the various superhuman attributes: Superhuman Strength: His cybernetic body makes him inhumanly strong well beyond the human limit.[citation needed] Superhuman Speed: As a cybernetic life form he can run and move at speeds that are beyond the physical limits of the finest human athlete.[citation needed] Superhuman Durability: As a cybernetic life form his construction makes him very durable.[citation needed] Superhuman Stamina: As a cybernetic life form he can exert itself well beyond the human limit.[citation needed] Superhuman Agility: As a cybernetic life form his agility, balance, and bodily coordination are enhanced to levels that are beyond the natural physical limits of the finest human athlete.[citation needed] Adaptation: Like all sentinels, he can assess the particular mutant abilities of his adversary and then modify his internal and external mechanism to compensate.[citation needed] Techno-Organic Virus: Bastion was exposed to the modified strain of Techno-Organic Virus by the villain Mainspring. With it he gained the ability to transmute inorganic matter into techno-mechanical material that he had complete and total control over.[13] Reanimation: He can also reanimate dead people by infecting them with the virus, as he did with several mutant-haters who formed his Human Council to aid in the extinction of the mutants.[16] Hive Mind: He can access the senses of those he infected with the virus, interfacing with their minds and thought processes. Everything they see he see's and through this connection he can feed them necessary information or bestow them with computerized senses in order to utilize and assess strategic advantages.[26] Technopathy and Technoformation: As the result of the merger between Nimrod and Master Mold, Bastion gained power to command and control computer systems and Sentinels. He also can reconfigure technological and mechanical objects, for example, use scrap metal and robotic parts to upgrade his body or reconfigure robotic bodies for himself by supplementing his head onto their chassis.[27][15] He could cast his will into any and every form of machinery or anything his virulent substance infects.[28] Sentinel Creation: Bastion has the natural ability to create cyborg mutant killers called Prime Sentinels using a nanite based conversion process.[29] These powers were magnified many times over with the introduction of the T.O. Virus into his system, now he can create Nimrod-like Omega Prime Sentinels in those whom he's resurrected within his Council.[22] Appearance and Shape Alteration: Bastion's technorganic frame has vast metamorphic capabilities, so much so that he could merge himself into any mechanical, cybernetic or techno mechanical substance he pushed his consciousness through. Changing anything or anyone else around him along with his form at will. Through this he is able to assume his normalized and Nimrod forms at will.[27] He can also generate new appendages and weaponry with a thought, such as missile pods generated from his shoulders.[30][22] Winged Flight: His transformation into a Nimrod-based sentinel bestowed him with four techno-organic wings which he could use to fly and for defense.[17][31] Size Increase: Through his mastery of techno kinetic matter manipulation, he could easily change and adjust his mass and height to monolithic proportions by converting and absorbing transformed matter into himself.[32] Quick Self-Repair: The nanites in his body provides him a self-repair similar to a Healing Factor. It was vastly improved after he merged with Techno-Organic Virus.[30][22] Energy Manipulation: Bastion had some modicum energy manipulation and casting abilities. A capacity which was only made stronger as he became a Transmode/Celestial Tech enhanced Nimrod series sentinel.[citation needed] Energy Projection: Able to shoot energy blasts from his hands and has laser vision he can fire from the eyes. During his final battle with hope, he showed he could project energy from his mouth as well.[22] Energy Shielding: Having been augmented through the Transmode Virus, he could project energy barriers of varying size and resilience. Once having erected a massive shield dome around the city of New York stretching from the bay area all the way to Utopia.[26] Telepathic Immunity: It is also immune to psychic reading from telepaths.[citation needed] Time Traveling: With the resurgence of his Nimrod programming. Bastion could freely traverse the timestream to access the alternate timeline which part of himself hails from. He can also travel to alternate futures, this of course was accidental.[23] Teleportation: Bastion has a natural ability to warp to and from different locations under his own power, even choosing who he takes along with him in the jump.[23] Portal Creation: Bastion had the power to open rifts to the alternate timeline where he originates from in order to summon more Nimrod Sentinels.[26] Abilities Genius Intelligence[33]

Other versions

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In other media

Video games


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