The ancient enemies of the Solstar Order, the Dire Wraiths are a race of parasitic alien shapeshifters bent on conquest. Capable of taking over the bodies of other life-forms and transforming them into more of their kind, the Dire Wraiths wield dark magics powered by the lifeblood of other creatures, and can take any form they wish.
Having been scattered across the galaxy after the destruction of their homeworld, they are pursued in their invasions by the Solstar Order's Space Knights, and above all else they fear the greatest of their number, Rom. But having arrived on Earth, the planet is unique among those the Dire Wraiths have come to, and its qualities may provide them with new weapons in their war with the Space Knights...
- 1 Fiction
- 2 Physiology
- 3 Variants
- 4 Notes
- 5 External links
- 6 References
At some point, the Cybertronian tyrant, Megatron became aware of the Dire Wraiths, leading him to avoid the Wraith-infested dark nebula. His follower Krok would share his disgust, reading up on the Wraiths and learning of their brief conquest of Temptoria. After occupying the planet, the Wraiths stole aspects of Temptorian religion. Despite this, some Cybertronians, such as one of the Ultra Magnuses, dismissed the Dire Wraiths as nothing more than myths.
The mysterious Talisman came into contact with Dire Wraith DNA at some point, gaining Wraith-like tendrils surrounding the emblem on its front.
When invading planets, Dire Wraiths would typically make their presence known despite disguising their appearances, constructing Wraith Hives during the invasion.
Over 200 years ago, the Dire Wraiths began invading fringe planets of the Solstar Order. In the early 1800s they invaded the Order's capital planet Elonia with the intent of stealing an alien ore from beneath its surface. They sent organic meteorites to the planet and managed to convert a small amount of the local populace into Dire Wraiths. They headed to a mountain range to retrieve the ore only to be confronted by a trio of newly graduated members of the Solstar Order. The fight led them to the ore where it latched onto, and formed a set of armor around, the Elonian Rom K'atsema, whom the Dire Wraiths had killed the family of. Rom, and his fellow Order members Livia and Fy-Laa, used the armor to enhance the power of their Neutralizers and destroy the Wraiths. The Solstar Order would come to use the ore to found the Space Knights, an elite order to fight back against the Dire Wraiths.
Within the next few decades, the Solstar Order chased the Wraiths across their region of space and managed to destroy the Wraiths' homeworld, sending them scattering across space. The events earned Rom a name among his enemies: "Wraithslayer". As the Wraiths would not hesitate to flee into the Galactic Council's space, the Order opened negotiations with the Council over passage into their territory; however, the Galactic Council representatives at their first meeting had been infected by the Dire Wraith Vekktral and his followers, who had formed an alliance with Starscream in pursuit of the Cybertronian Solstar Knight Stardrive and her fuel source. After studying Stardrive, the Solstar Order had concluded that the metallic physiology of Cybertronians made them immune to Dire Wraith assimilation. When the Autobots broke into Orchid Crossing however, a Dire Wraith tried to assimilate with Sky Blast, the resulting interaction turned both the Wraith and the Autobot into an out-of-control Wraith/Cybertronian hybrid that slaughtered everyone and everything in its path. On Xetaxxis, the hybrid's energy levels reached a critical point and it burnt itself out. At Starscream's order, Vekktral's men assimilated several Xetaxxians who played on Bumblebee's sympathies to lure him into a trap so as to try and assimilate him and Ultra Magnus. Magnus dispatched somewhere in the vicinity of a hundred Wraiths before their sheer numbers overwhelmed him and he was assimilated by Vekktral. When Vekktral arrived at the ruins of Orchid Crossing, the Wraiths in hiding revealed their true nature and surrounded the Space Knights and Bumblebee before Vekktral turned on Starscream. The Decepticons promptly killed the Wraiths accosting them before Starscream detonated the energon synthesizer wiping out 48% of Xetaxxis and all the Wraiths on the planet. In the aftermath, the Wraiths decided against possession of Cybertronians and doubled down on their commitment to magic. Starscream likewise reported the Wraiths' unfeasibility as allies to Megatron.
At some point after the formation of the Space Knights, a cadre of Wraith Sorcerers attempted to terraform the planet Verdulun-5; however, the planet — actually a single gelatinous entity — absorbed the Wraiths, taking on both their powers and intelligence and accelerating Verdulun-5's evolution. However, it also became intent on spreading its own uni-mind to consume all living beings across existence. When Rom and Fy-Laa came across the planet, it took its chance to do so, absorbing Fy-Laa into the hive-mind and attempting to do the same to Rom in order to use their spaceflight capacity to spread to other worlds. Rom and Fy-Laa eventually managed to destroy Verdulun-5 only for a Wraith Sorcerer to later arrive and collect pieces of Fy-Laa's corpse.
The Dire Wraiths came to Earth at some point during the 1800s. Though they had initially planned to conquer the planet and move on, they deemed the energy of Earth suitable for transformation into a new homeworld. Because of this, the Dire Wraith invasion of Earth was far more subtle and deep than a typical Wraith invasion, with no Wraith Hives being constructed, and humanity not becoming aware of the Wraiths' presence; in addition, the Wraiths learned to use their magic to corrupt Earth plant-life to do their bidding. The Wraiths on Earth took orders from a powerful, spectral Wraith known as the Absence. Beneath the crust of the Earth, they planted the Presence and began harvesting various sources of energy to feed the god's growth.
The Wraiths spent the next two centuries infiltrating the world's governments and militaries, preparing for their eventual encounter with the Space Knights. Energon ore Ore-13, which enhanced their magical abilities and gave them the ability to hide from the Space Knights' Energy Analyzers; however, the ore was rare and the Wraiths were forced to scrounge for whatever small quantities of it they could find.On the planet they found the potent
Though the majority of Dire Wraiths aligned themselves with the invasion plans, some came to reject their role, including the sleeper agent Ruan Sablik, who was born on Earth and would come to consider it his home; the medic Carl Greer, who would go on to join G.I. Joe and father a half-human daughter; and a Wraith who used the alias CONS4EVA on a Decepticon social media network.
In 2016, Rom arrived on Earth, leading the Wraith leadership to send a unit of Wraiths stationed within the United States Army to travel to northern California to verify his presence. The lone human survivor returned to Vandenberg Air Force Base, where he was debriefed on what had happened by members of the Earth Defense Command; unfortunately, those EDC members were Dire Wraiths themselves, who infected the soldier and transformed him into one of them. With confirmation that Rom was present on the planet, Dire Wraith leader Dave Dubosky initiated the "Rom protocols", while other Wraiths acted to turn the humans against him. The Wraiths had also completely infested the town of Cooper's Mill, which Rom traveled to shortly after arriving on Earth; despite their use of magic to turn the plantlife of the town against him (and use of smartphone recording to persuade the internet that the Space Knight was a dangerous murderer), Rom managed to kill the Wraiths attacking him, before escaping with the uninfected Darby Mason. Though Rom and Darby regrouped at Darby's home, they were soon attacked by the town's Dire Wraith populace with corrupted plantlife and Wraith bio-circuitry; using his Neutralizer on its ultimate setting, Rom managed to burn out all the Wraiths in the town, leaving Darby's home intact.
Police Officer Camilla Byers, a human who had been struck by a Wraith's tendril during their initial contact with Rom, was left with the Wraithmark on her face; though it acted as a sign of growing Wraith consciousness inside her, it also gave her the ability to see through the Wraiths' disguises, including those enhanced by Ore-13. Her Dire Wraith-infected superiors sent Wraith Stalkers to try and kill her, but she was saved by Rom; however, both were soon captured by the Wraith Sorcerer D'rge, who had hidden himself from Rom's analyzer with the ore. D'rge wished to try and obtain the powers of Rom's armor by stripping it from his living flesh, but was distracted by Camilla, who he was able to look into the mind of; though he misled her into thinking that he would remove the Wraith infection, he actually planned to infect her completely. However, his distraction gave Rom the opportunity he needed to escape from the sorcerer's magics; D'rge fled, leaving his surviving follower behind to cover his escape. While Rom believed that he would be able to use his Neutralizer to remove Camilla's Wraith infection, she allowed him to hold off in order to use her connection to see past the Wraiths' disguises.
After the Dire Wraiths at Vandenberg Base tried to recruit Darby Mason to use against Rom, Darby, Rom and Camilla infiltrated the base by presenting the Space Knight as a captured prisoner. dimensional binding prism, keeping him out of phase with reality; however, he was released when Darby shot the prism with the EMP weapon she had been given by the Wraiths, allowing Rom to neutralize the magic holding him in. Rom killed the Wraiths present at the base, interrogating one of their warriors over their immunity to the analyzer, and was persuaded to put it out of its misery when Camilla confirmed that it had told him all it knew.The EDC held Rom in a
An alien alliance
Seeking to obtain greater quantities of Ore-13, the Dire Wraith leadership on Earth formed an alliance with Miles "Mayhem" Manheim, in exchange for aiding him in his operations against Optimus Prime and his annexation of Earth. As part of this scheme, a Dire Wraith infected General Joe Colton, leader of the EDC and G.I. Joe, though Colton survived by cutting off the hand that was infected with Wraith biomatter. As part of these operations, the Dire Wraiths obtained the advanced tech-suit technology of Deepwave Technologies; using Deepwave employee Aaron Grundy as a test subject, they combined the suit, Micromeld technology, Ore-13 and Dire Wraith biology to create the monstrous Axiom as a weapon to use against Rom and the Cybertronians.
Led by Wraith-Colton, the Dire Wraiths helped to push G.I. Joe into war with Optimus Prime and his Cybertronians. However, Rom intervened in their battle in Portland, Oregon, killing the Wraiths who had infiltrated G.I. Joe. When confronted by Optimus Prime over his apparent murders of the humans, Rom gave the Autobot a vague explanation of who the Dire Wraiths were. Baron Karza also monitored the Wraiths from his realm. Once the Autobots made it clear they would kill Rom if he didn't provide a clearer explanation, he elaborated on the subject and the Wraiths' interest in Ore-13.
The Wraiths soon seized control of the EDC facility on Bikini Atoll, Skywarp to create new weapons. G.I. Joe however managed to infiltrate and retake the facility, freeing Skywarp. At the same time, they infiltrated the White House to try to claim the Ore-13 that Joe Colton had been carrying. While they got it, Marissa Faireborn and Thundercracker managed to defeat them.with the intent to use the Decepticon
Mayhem later contacted the Wraith leader "Caleb Awan" to inform him of the large supply of Ore-13 beneath Autobot City. The Wraiths moved out to meet their Mobile Armored Strike Kommand allies in Monument Valley where many Wraiths performed a kamikaze attack on Victorion, overwhelming the combiner. When they entered the city, their path was bared by Rom who had allied himself with the Cybertronians and others to fight off the Wraiths. The Wraiths managed to use the Ore-13 beneath the city to enhance their power before they, rather unsurprisingly, betrayed Miles Mayhem. Refusing to be beaten by aliens, Mayhem summoned his other ally Baron Karza from Microspace (much to the amusement of Caleb, who questioned what the diminutive creature could do). The diminutive creature responded by enerchanging all the Wraiths into him, turning himself into an ungodly fusion of Cybertronian, Microspace, and Wraith power. The Karza-Wraith hybrid took the battle to Rom, M.A.S.K., G.I. Joe, the Transformers, and the Micronauts, ejecting a number of Wraiths from himself to fight Victorion, before the hybrid was forced back into the spacebridge; the majority of the Wraiths' leaders were destroyed at Autobot City, though Caleb Awan survived.
The Wraith known as "CONS4EVA", sick of war and wishing to fulfill a Temptorian religious ceremony known as "the Crossover", sought out the Decepticon Crankcase and the human MP3 to open a portal to a higher plane of existence... which was, unfortunately, too small to enter. CONS4EVA accepted a ride from the Decepticons to the nearest starhub before setting out on his own.
A growing presence
Though the Autobot City alliance allowed Rom to leave to deal with the Wraith infestation, G.I. Joe soldiers Beach Head and Grunt did not trust the Space Knight, and went on an unauthorized mission against Rom and the Dire Wraiths alike. When the Talisman was accidentally activated in its storage facility, it turned the entire populace, human and pet alike, of Verenya, Schleteva into Wraiths. As these were not true Wraiths, Rom merely stunned them before handing them over to the Action Man Programme in hopes of finding a cure. Following the "Revolution incident", several Dire Wraiths embraced the lack of leadership and went on killing sprees; one pair of Wraiths in Santa Barbara, California did so, but were killed by the newly-arrived Space Knights Orphion and Livia.
A group of Dire Wraiths formed an anarchist movement in Greece under the Cobra banner, which Lady Jaye and Gung-Ho were sent to deal with. G.I. Joe members Doc, Doc Sr. and Grand Slam worked together on finding a way to detect Dire Wraiths, but the device they constructed appeared to find repeated false positives on scanning the Docs; unknown to most, this was because Doc Sr. was a Wraith and his daughter was only half-human. When the devices attached to Skywarp in an attempt to restore his teleportation abilities exploded, Doc Sr. threw himself in front of Grand Slam to protect him from the shrapnel, but revealed his true form in the process and was rendered comatose. After the younger Doc's heritage was exposed, several members of G.I. Joe, including Skywarp and Salvo, came to distrust her.
On arriving on Earth, Orphion and Livia were horrified by the extent of the Wraith infestation, and wished to "wipe the planet clean".When Rom reunited with Camilla, he found that her Wraith infection had progressed faster than he had hoped. He offered her a choice between a painful and risky attempt at excising the infection or the mercy of a quick death, but the Wraith incubating within her took control of her body and fought back against Rom. As it fought Rom and his reinforcements Livia and Orphion, it ejected itself from Camilla to take the form of a Wraith Hawk. Rom managed to destroy the Hawk while Orphion expunged the Wraith from Camilla. Orphion and Rom debated on what to do regarding Earth. Orphion highlighted that the Wraiths had infected every continent and Earth should be destroyed but Rom pointed out that the Wraiths' strategy on Earth did not match any previous infiltration, and desired to learn more information rather than just mindlessly destroy Wraiths; but before they could come to an agreement, they were attacked by Grunt and Beach Head, who had heard them speaking of destroying the Earth.
Elsewhere, a group of Dire Wraiths had formed a cult to feed off the psionic energy of humans. Led by Kagan Knight, who revealed his true form to a group of human volunteers, the Wraiths sucked out their souls in order to feed the "great one", though Knight was disappointed that so few souls could be obtained. Knight subsequently travelled to a Wraith-controlled offshore drilling platform, where he and his fellow sorcerers performed a ritual to nourish and replenish "her". At the same time, the platform was attacked by Orphion, who — as well as purging it of Dire Wraiths — intended to use the drill to deliver his Neutralizer's energy to the core of the Earth and destroy it, something that Rom refused to allow him to do. While the two Space Knights fought, Knight saw it as an opportunity, and had the sorcerers summon the Absence, giving up his life to allow his master to manifest. After the Space Knights had tired each other out in battle, the Absence struck, draining Livia and Orphion of energy; but Rom came to their rescue, firing his Neutralizer within the Absence's body and banishing him. Orphion attempted to use the drill to channel his Neutralizer's power into the core of the Earth, which tore apart the Wraith Sorcerers below apart even as they "rejoiced" at what was happening, pleasing the Absence; but Orphion eventually stopped what he was doing to use his power to save Livia's life, after Rom begged him to. The Absence saw this as a setback, but believed that "the promised day" was close, and that the Presence would inevietably awaken.
Sleeper agent Ruan Sablik, a friend of Darby Mason, made contact with her and revealed that he was a Dire Wraith; though initially distrustful of Ruan, she believed him when he explained that he had been born on Earth and wanted to help Darby fight back against the rest of the Wraiths. dead Space Knight's arm and Energy Analyzer from a Dire Wraith-controlled Atlas Terminal Co. warehouse in Providence, Rhode Island; he and Darby broke into the warehouse, and while Darby killed the Wraith guards, Ruan pulled the arm — held out of phase with reality, for security — back into existence, sacrificing his life in the process.Ruan planned to retrieve a
One Dire Wraith acted as a priest in a human church in Pismo Beach, California, but his alien status was noticed by humans, who alerted Rom and his allies when they came to the area. The Wraith expounded to the Space Knights at length on the power of of faith, and when the Knights attacked he shapeshifted into a monstrous battle-form, immune to Livia's Neutralizer; the three Knights defeated him by combining the power of their Neutralizers, but the Wraith laughed as he died, claiming that he was going to "the bosom of his god". In order to more effectively determine the Wraiths' goal, the Space Knights split up: Livia and Rom travelled to the Mediterranean Sea, where the energy patterns of the Wraiths were abnormal, while Orphion explored the United States' 37th parallel, which had a higher than average concentration of Wraiths. Livia discovered a group of Dire Wraiths aboard a cruise ship off the coast of Sicily; while she planned to simply execute the Wraiths, Rom allowed them to call for reinforcements in order to eliminate as many Wraiths as possible without collateral damage. However, Rom's plan went awry when their reinforcements turned out to be the sea monsters Scylla and Charybdis. The two proved too much for Rom and Livia to handle however owing to their ability to drain their armors of energy. After the Knights had a brief respite, they returned below the depths to confront the two powerful Wraiths now backed up by an army of aquatic Wraiths. The two quickly concluded however that the aquatic army were merely puppets under Scylla's thrall and focused solely on her. Backed into a corner, the Wraith general revealed the extent of the Wraiths' machinations on Earth and the eventual rise of the Presence before Rom and Livia slew her. Elsewhere in Utah, Orphion found Kagan Knight's new operation before he killed him and tracked down the released psychic energy to a crack in the desert floor which soon sealed itself much to the concern of D'rge as Orphion was dangerously close to uncovering the Wraiths' plans.
Shawn Berger, a Dire Wraith, was responsible for creating several giant monsters around Mount St. Helens, causing M.A.S.K. to intervene. When the team was captured, Berger took the opportunity to extract plasmid from the body of Zartan, a shapeshifter who had infiltrated M.A.S.K. by posing as Brad Turner. Berger planned on using the plasmid to create an army of clone soldiers, but when M.A.S.K. escaped in Thunderhawk, the Wraith was knocked off and into the vat of plasmid as the cave beneath the volcano collapsed.
When Baron Ironblood's Iron Ring attacked Cybertron, the Solstar Order detected the Dire Wraith derived biology within the Red Shadows and placed the metallic planet under quarantine much to the rage of its government.
Concurrently on Earth, D'rge developed a magical virus that would turn human beings into Wraiths and infected several insects with it so that they would spread the virus. He first sent them after the Micronauts who managed to survive the encounter and tracked him down only for his power to overwhelm them. The Micronauts reached out to Rom however and with his aid, they proved able to destroy the virus. When the Wraith Sorcerers were making new plans however, they were approached by Baron Karza who proposed an alliance to deal with their mutual foes.
Aw Yeah! Revolution
Traveling through space in search of Dire Wraith, Rom the Space Knight discovered a Wraith collective hiding in an asteroid. Rom attempted to talk things out, but the Dire Wraiths decided they'd rather fight. As they attacked him, Rom activated his forcefield, only to be whisked away by Baron Karza, leaving the Wraiths confused. Cobra troops. The Wraiths swarmed their foe before he managed to break free to confront Destro.
Dire Wraiths vary heavily in appearance, but generally shared features include their distinctive split forearms, four-fingered clawed hands and wide mouths with sharp teeth and long, pointed tongues, as well as the "palm-spike" tendrils emerging from their wrists, used to infect other beings.Two main "variants" appear to be more common — heavy-set, eyeless brown Wraiths and slender, four-armed and six-eyed blue-grey Wraiths — but many others have appeared, varying in skin color, number of eyes and other features such as horns.
While more durable than humans, Dire Wraiths were still able to be killed by human bullets. Insecticons also possessed teeth sharp enough to eat through Wraith flesh.Cybertronian
It is possible for Dire Wraiths to crossbreed with human beings,creating half-Wraith/half-Human hybrids.
In their natural forms, Dire Wraiths were of similar height to human beings and Space Knights. The natural form of one Wraith however was just below shoulder level of the average Cybertronian. Dire Wraiths were capable of shrinking down to Microspacian scale.
The color of Dire Wraith blood varied. While most instances of Wraiths bleeding showed red blood,other cases have shown Wraiths bleeding green and pink/purple blood.
The most obvious physical trait of the Dire Wraiths is their ability to shapeshift.After infecting something, the Wraiths are able to shift between their original form and the form of the being that they had infected, as well as all prior infected beings; and while in Wraith-form, they are capable of shifting shape for combat purposes, distorting and changing their bodies while still remaining visibly Dire Wraiths. The Wraiths could shift the position of their internal organs for defensive purposes while in solid form, and became near invincible while shapeshifting as they as lacked internal organs during this transition period. They also had the ability to dissolve their ears to shield themselves from sonic attacks. Rom believed that when a Wraith infected another being, both the Wraith and its victim ceased to exist, with the new creature being nothing but a mimicry of life. Dire Wraiths were capable of releasing any victims they had possessed.
Once the Wraiths assumed a new form, nothing short of an Energy Analyzer could distinguish between them and the genuine article of a species. (The dog Buster also possessed the "seemingly unique" ability to tell the Wraiths apart from humans.) However it was only a mimicry of the species as an autopsy would reveal the Wraith DNA buried beneath the surface, though in some cases dead Wraiths remained indistinguishable from humans, down to the DNA. 
The results of killing a Dire Wraith varied: in some cases, they would revert to their "true" Wraith form,  Dire Wraiths could call upon their tentacles or palm spikes in their human forms.while in others, they would remain in their assumed form.
The Dire Wraiths come in many different forms, with different castes having different abilities. These include:
The Wraith Sorcerers are the highest class of Wraiths, possessing the most powerful magics; they would "break the spirit" of infiltrated worlds from within, before their soldiers devastated them.
An elite caste of Dire Wraiths, the Wraith Hawks are capable of using magic to grant themselves wings and the power of flight.
Heavily built muscular Wraiths resembling the Sorcerer caste, Wraith Soldiers act as the main muscle of the Wraiths.Despite their great strength, they are not as formidable a threat as the Sorcerers.
The trackers of the Wraiths, the Wraith Stalkers are twisted and animalistic, resembling humans twisted into the shape of hunting dogs. Rom considered them to be "victims" of the Wraiths.
Wraith mutates are those Dire Wraiths that form from their infected victims. It's unclear what distinguishes a "normal" Wraith from a mutate, or if Wraiths are considered "mutates" only in the early stages of their transformation.
- While it was believed that Marvel Comics owned the Dire Wraiths (using them as recently as 2011), that is not the case, as they were mentioned in Rom's original toy commercial. However, while Marvel doesn't own the name or concept of the Dire Wraiths, they do own their design for the Wraiths, forcing IDW Publishing to give the Wraiths a new look.
- A toy of the Dire Wraiths' IDW design was released at San Diego Comic-Con 2017, as part of an exclusive box-set of G.I. Joe-scale Revolution toys.
- ...Which is because of inconsistency between writers: Chris Ryall and Christos Gage's ROM has the Wraiths' DNA remain human after death, John Barber and Cullen Bunn's Revolution has the Wraith DNA distinguishable from human when analyzed, and Aubrey Sitterson's G.I. Joe has the Wraiths revert to their true forms on death.