Adam Warlock, created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, first appeared in Fantastic Four #66 (in cocoon form) and #67 (in human form) in 1967. Originally, he was known as Him, but was changed to Adam Warlock by Roy Thomas and Gil Kane for Marvel Pemiere #1 in 1972.
From then on, he appeared in his own limited run series The Power of Warlock, as well as Strange Tales, until his revival in the ’90s where he was an integral part of defeating Thanos in The Infinity Gauntlet and regularly appeared in the subsequent series’ Warlock and the Infinity Watch, Infinity War, Infinity Crusade, and The Infinity Abyss before Annihilation and Annihilation: Conquest.
Adam Warlock is a synthetic being created by The Enclave as a prototype for an ideal race of humans who would rule the Earth. After emerging from his cocoon, he was able to sense his creators’ corruption and rebelled. Originally known as Him, it wasn’t until he met The Hight Evolutionary that he received the name Adam.
His super powers include manipulating energy, creating force fields, teleporting, traveling faster than light and detecting wormholes and other irregularities in space using quantum magic.
Gamora, created by Jim Starlin, first appeared in Strange Tales #180 in 1975. She is the adopted daughter of the Titan, Thanos. Most of her appearances through the years were in series stemming from The Infinity Gauntlet (Warlock and the Infinity Watch, Infinity War, Infinity Crusade, and Infinity Abyss) until Guardians of the Galaxy in 2008.
The last of her species (the Zen Whoberi), Thanos adopted Gamora and trained her to become “the deadliest woman in the whole galaxy” for the sole purpose of assassinating the Magus, an evil version of Adam Warlock. As an adult, she teamed up with the real Adam Warlock to exact revenge on the Black Knights of the Universal Church of Truth for the genocide of her people. When Thanos revealed himself to be a greater threat than the Magus, Gamora joined forces with Captain Mar-vell, Drax the Destroyer, and the Avengers to defeat Thanos. Over the years, she has been romantically involved with both Adam Warlock and Nova.
Her abilities include superhuman strength, speed, and agility, as a rapid healing ability. She is also an expert in various martial arts, incredibly proficient in hand-to-hand combat, and is skilled with a wide variety of weapons. Like Drax, she prefers knives and swords.
Drax, the Destroyer, created by Mike Friedrich and Jim Starlin, first appeared in Iron Man #55 in 1973. He appeared sporadically in issues of Iron Man, Captain Marvel, and Warlock until he was prominently featured in the The Infinity Gauntlet #1-6 and Warlock and the Infinity Watch #1-42 in the early 90s. Like the rest of this team, he was reintroduced in Annihilation: Conquest.
Originally a human named Arthur Douglas, he and his entire family were killed by Thanos. Desperate for a warrior to defeat Thanos, the Titan god Kronos placed Douglas’s spirit into a new body, creating Drax, the Destroyer. Unfortunately, by the end of The Infinity Gauntlet, Drax witnesses Thanos’ death at the hands of Captain Marvel. He then takes to wandering through space in deep contemplation, having been robbed of his purpose, before being recruited by Adam Warlock for his first team-up, the Infinity Watch.
Drax’s powers include strength, resilience, flight, and the ability to shoot blasts of energy from his hands. He can also sense Thanos from across the universe. His trademark weapons are two huge, long knives.
Rocket Raccoon, created by Bill Mantlo and Keith Giffen, first apeared in Marvel Preview #7 in 1976. Over the years, he appeared here and there in issues of Hulk and She-Hulk, however he did get his own 4-issue limited run in 1985. He eventually appeared in Annihilation: Conquest before settling in the Guardians of the Galaxy.
Before he was a Guardian of the Galaxy, he was the “Guardian of the Keystone Quadrant,” captain of a ship called Rack ‘n’ Ruin. He originated from a planet called Halfworld, an abandoned colony for the mentally ill. On Halfworld, animal companions were granted human level intelligence to care for the inmates. Rocket was their chief law officer.
While Rocket lacks “super powers,” he does possess all of the normal attributes of a raccoon ( acute sense of smell, sight, hearing and touch). He is also incredibly proficient with various firearms, and is an excellent tactician and leader. It is not uncommon for Rocket to take the lead when Star-Lord is unavailable.
Rocket Raccon is my favorite Guardian.
Star-Lord was created by Steve Englehart and Steve Gan. He made his first appearance in Marvel Preview #4 in 1976. He appeared again here and there over the years in Marvel Super Special, Marvel Spotlight, and Marvel Premier. He returned again in Thanos #8-12 in 2004, Annihilation #1-6 in 2006 and a 4 issue run titled Annihilarion: Conquest – Star-Lord leading into Annihilation: Conquest.
Star-Lord, aka Peter Quill, is a human-alien hybrid, having an alien father (Jason of Spartoi) and a human mother (Meredith Quill). At age 11, he witnessed the death of his mother at the hands of the Spartoi. Eventually, he grew up to be an astronaut, working for NASA where an alien being known as the Master of the Sun bestowed upon him the mantle of Star-Lord along with a sentient vessel known as “Ship.”
While he has no actual “super powers,” Peter Quill is a master strategist, and is an expert in close-quarter combat, human and alien firearms, and battle techniques. Due to severe injuries he sustained during a battle with The Fallen One, one of Galactus’ former heralds, he received cybernetic implants that enhance his senses and give him 100% recall.
He is outfitted in a Kree heat-dampening-espionage-battle suit, a helmet that improves his vision and regulates his oxygen. He also carries a pair of signature Kree sub-machine guns.
Star-Lord is the leader of the Guardians of the Galaxy.