That's the problem with heroes, really. Their only purpose in life is to thwart others. They make no plans, develop no strategies. They react instead of act. Without villains, heroes would stagnate. Without heroes, villains would be running the world. Heroes have morals. Villains have work ethic.
~ Kang in The Last Avengers Story.
Nathaniel Richards, better known as Kang the Conqueror, is a major antagonist in Marvel Comics, most commonly serving as one of the two secondary antagonists (alongside Loki) of the Avengers comic book series and a major antagonist in the Fantastic Four comic book series. He is a time-traveling terrorist who is intent on total domination of the entire universe. He served as the second arch-nemesis of the Avengers team and he served as the main antagonist of The Celestial Madonna Saga, The Last Avengers Story, and The Crossing and as the titular main antagonist of The Kang War.
The history of the time-traveling supervillain known as Kang the Conqueror is a complex one. He began as Nathanial Richards, hundreds of years after the mainstream Marvel Universe takes place. The technology in his day was extremely advanced, giving him time traveling capabilities.
After meeting his ancestor Doctor Doom, Nathanial was inspired to make for himself a suit of powered armor, calling himself the Scarlet Centurion. He then used that alternate Earth to his advantage, manipulating the original Avengers into capturing every other superhuman in their world. After this was accomplished, he brought the mainstream Avengers to that world, and forced them to fight, planning that he would defeat whichever team lost and thus be free to conquer that world. The mainstream Avengers won, but also defeated Centurion, sending him back to his own time.
Humiliated at his defeat, Nathanial crafted a new persona for himself as Kang the Conqueror. He then proceeded to completely take over his world, as well as several other alien worlds, including the Shi'ar. Kang then went back in time to get his revenge on the Avengers who had defeated him. He met them in direct combat, but was once again defeated. Shortly after, he decided to use trickery to beat them, making a robot version of Spider-Man to catch them off guard. Kang then defeated the Avengers, but not before the real Spider-Man came, destroying his robot duplicate and freeing his fellow superheroes. Kang then retreated back to his own time, to conquer and plan more before his next return.
Powers and Abilities
Kang possesses a genius-level intellect, and is a master strategist and scientist. His technology is far more powerful and advanced than that of Iron Man or Doctor Doom, and has so many capabilities.
His armor gives him the trademark ability to time-travel seamlessly, making him the only character in the Marvel universe (other than his counterpart Immortus) to be able to time-travel without creating divergences. He can also manipulate time to his will. The armor also gives him a relatively small amount of superhuman strength, capable of lifting 5 tons, as well as great durability. He has an antigravity controller, in which he can render himself and other objects up to 2.2 tons, weightless. He can create extremely powerful force fields around himself up to twenty feet, and can fire energy blasts from his hands and helmet that have the force of several tons of dynamite. He often utilizes a hover pad with which he can fly during his battles, and can summon weapons through time-portals instantly.
Many of these weapons include an antimatter field generator, a vibration-wave projector, an electromagnetic field amplifier, a hand-held warhead launcher, electrical emitters, nerve gas sprayers, and a molecular expander, among other things.
He also commands vast armies of warriors from across all of time, including his own future army, which possess advanced weaponry similar to his own. An expert in future robotics, Kang also has numerous robots to do his bidding.
Kang travels in his Damocles Base, a huge time-traveling spaceship which is shaped like a sword.
In Other Media
Lego Marvel Avengers
Kang the Conqueror appears in Lego Marvel's Avengers DLC pack of Captain Marvel as both a boss and a playable character.
Lego Marvel Superheroes 2
Kang serves as the main antagonist and a playable character in Lego Marvel Superheroes 2. Kang travels across space and time to collect areas of different realms to build his city-base, Chronopolis, along with gathering heroes from those eras, including the Avengers.
At the beginning of the game, Kang and his forces attack the Nova Empire on the planet Xandar to acquire it. As soon as Kang notices the Guardians of the Galaxy fighting off his invasion, he uses the Forever Crystal to summon the Celestial Eson to fight them. Even though the Guardians of the Galaxy prevailed and banished Eson, Kang deploys several projectiles to form a barrier around a section of Xandar, vanishing it from existence. Kang then departs on his ship, the Damocles, while the Guardians flee and travel to Earth to alert the Avengers.
Kang enlists many supervillains on Earth, who all plan their own schemes for his arrival. Once Kang arrives on Earth to obtain a fraction of New York City, he teleports the Avengers there to Chronopolis, where they meet other heroes and villains from alternate eras.
Once Chronopolis was formed, there were energy barriers separating the realms, in which Kang had to open portals to help his villainous cohorts travel in between them. The source of the dimensional barriers was the Nexus of Realities.
Kang arrives in a local swamp, where he appears before Thor, Captain Marvel and She-hulk after they defeated the Man-Thing, and reveals to them a local swamp tree as the Nexus of Realities and Man-Thing as its guardian. Kang then throws a bomb at the tree, destroying it and lowering the energy barriers, thus allowing his forces to invade and travel through the other realms of Chronopolis with ease.
Throughout the progress of the game, Kang is at his citadel, where he is observing Chronopolis and admiring his plan in action. Kang's bride, Rovana, slyly urges him to stop his plan of conquest, but Kang strongly opposed her, prompting the latter to contact Cosmo to aid the Avengers.
As Kang catches wind of the heroes' plan to use the Nexus shards to summon Cosmo to Chronopolis, he hacks into their device designed to summon Cosmo to fool them into summoning Ego instead to destroy them. Luckily, the heroes fixed their machine, banishing Ego, and successfully summoning Cosmo in Knowhere to Chronopolis.
Once Cosmo arrived, he helps the heroes emit an EMP signal from Knowhere that lowered Kang's Citadel's defense systems. Captain Marvel then orders the Nova Corp to attack the Citadel, but Kang's ship suddenly arrives and wipes out the entire Nova Corp. Spider-Man, Iron Man, and Star-Lord invade the Damocles and face Kang there, only to discover him as a hologram. Kang then causes his ship to crash and dispatches Korvac to assure the heroes' demise, though the heroes soon manage to escape from the ship after they defeated Korvac.
The heroes head over to Kang's Citadel and finally make their way towards Kang. In the final battle, Kang challenges Captain America as a giant hologram to face him while he terrorizes Chronopolis by using his ship as a massive sword. Once Captain America creates a giant projection of himself, he takes Kang head-on and defeats him, forcing him out of his hologram simulator. However, Kang still refuses to give up, as he now plans to use his Forever Crystal to reset time to prevent the heroes' victory from happening. However, he soon discovers that Rovanna has now sided with the heroes and secretly aided them while she takes his crystal away from him. Rovanna feels ashamed of herself for her betrayal, as she revealed her feelings for Kang. Kang tries to manipulate Rovanna into handing over his crystal, but Rovanna now stands up to Kang and uses the Forever Crystal to transform him into an infant.
In the aftermath, Infant Kang is placed in the care of the heroes while the newly reformed Rovanna vows to return the realms of Chronopolis to their proper eras with the Forever Crystal. However, Rovanna soon returns from the future as Terminatrix to seek help from the heroes, as she and the Supreme Intelligence come across Captain America, Captain Marvel and Iron Man and inform them about a chronal fracture.
Contest of Champions
Kang the Conqueror serves as a boss and playable character in the mobile game Contest of Champions. In the story quest, Kang competes in the contest with a team of heroes and villains to challenge the main player known as the Summoner who is tasked by the Collector to win, otherwise they will be added to his collection.
Marvel: Avengers Alliance
Kang the Conqueror appears as a boss and playable character in the Facebook game Marvel: Avengers Alliance.
Marvel Future Avengers
Kang serves as the main antagonist of the first season and the mastermind behind the Emerald Rain Project.
In "Conqueror Kang"
He is voiced by Jiro Saito in Japanese and by Steve Blum in English dub.