Alpha originated from the combination of a self-replicating nanite swarm and Sentinels A.I. The mutant thief Gambit was hired by Olivia Trask to steal the nanites from Nanostorm, Inc. with the intention to use it for military applications and make a profit out of that. When he learned of Olivia's intentions while delivering the vial containing the swarm, Gambit became suspicious of her and attempted to take back the vial. The swarm was released when one of Trask's guards knocked down Gambit. The nanites interfaced with Trask's computer systems, and mutated into a Sentinel-looking humanoid figure.
The X-Men arrived to the scene once they were alerted by Gambit. The Sentinel fled after Kitty Pryde used her phasing powers to disrupt its tech. The heroes were quick to catch up with the robot due to the level of destruction it caused in its ensuing rampage through Manhattan. The X-Men discovered not only that the Sentinel split apart into smaller versions of itself, but also that it was targeting people with any kind of genetic mutation, from victims of cancer to people with colorblindness. Having discovered that the Sentinel was vulnerable to psychic attacks, Prestige attacked it, causing the Sentinel to disperse further across the city, and knocking herself unconscious in the process.
The X-Men joined forces with numerous other heroes in order to protect the bystanders being targeted by the Sentinel, which had turned itself into an army of killer drones. However, the Sentinel adapted to their attacks faster than they could hit it, and eventually overpowered them all, merging back into its humanoid form afterwards. Having recovered from her attack's backlash and having tapped the full potential of her powers, Prestige attacked the Sentinel once again, this time destroying most of the swarm for good. At least one nanite remained intact, which went unnoticed.
Not too long afterwards, the Sentinel fully regenerated its body and adopted the name of Alpha. Having concocted a plan to destroy mutantkind that involved Colossus, Alpha approached anti-mutant Lydia Nance to join forces with her as part of its plan. She provided Alpha her facility in the Savage Land. After capturing Colossus, Alpha set out to create a lethal smart virus that could target mutants derived from the remnants of the Legacy Virus in Colossus' body. Since Alpha intended to erradicate all mutants and it considered itself a mutant due to its origin, Alpha planned to exterminate itself afterwards. Before the X-Men could reach him, Alpha escaped with Colossus to an abandoned Roxxon space station from where he planned to release the bombs containing the mutant-killing virus. The X-Men followed him to the station, but failed to stop him in time, and Alpha escaped as soon as he deployed the bombs. Fortunately, a fleet of Alpha Flight ships, Storm and Pyro managed to intercept and destroy all of them before they made landfall. Since Nance had been captured back in the Savage Land, Alpha sent a portion of his nanites to free her from a holding cell in the Triskelion. These nanites were stopped by Iceman, who believed them to represent Alpha in its entirety.
Powers and Abilities
Nanite Body: Alpha's body is made of a nanite cloud that allows it to disperse, split apart, and shape-shift.
Adaptive A.I.: The programming Alpha derives from is a type of "sub-luminal" A.I. which can learn from previous experiences.
Psychic Attacks: Unlike most Sentinels, Alpha is self-aware and possesses a consciousness, making it vulnerable to psychic attacks.
Freezing: Alpha's nanites are vulnerable to freezing attacks.
- Even though Alpha wasn't given a name until X-Men: Gold (Vol. 2) #26, it was called "0101" in the solicitation for X-Men: Gold (Vol. 2) #5. In 4-bit binary code, 0101 translates to the number 5.
- At first, Alpha spoke solely in binary code.
- The story where Alpha debuted is named Techno Superior, which might imply that is the denomination of its species.
- 8 appearance(s) of Alpha (Sentinel) (Earth-616)
- 2 minor appearance(s) of Alpha (Sentinel) (Earth-616)
- 5 mention(s) of Alpha (Sentinel) (Earth-616)
- 12 image(s) of Alpha (Sentinel) (Earth-616)
- 1 quotation(s) by or about Alpha (Sentinel) (Earth-616)