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"These kids were designed to kill. Coldly...efficiently...and most of all happily."Lydecker to Logan Cale, Pollo Loco

The X5 Series were the first truly successful prototypes of the X-Series, a project to create physically and mentally perfect commandos, which could be utilized for a wide variety of Special Operations assignments and missions. As of 2021, they are 21 years old. Bred, trained and raised by Manticore, a sinister top-secret military institution controlled by a shadowy government "Committee", all X5's are human/animal-transgenic-hybrids, or Chimeras. They were genetically-engineered at Manticore's highly advanced genetics labs by splicing together genetic samples taken from numerous superb human specimens with a sample of feline DNA, most probably taken from a member of the Leopard or Tiger family. After the bio-engineering and in-vitro work was performed the X5 embryos were implanted into surrogate mothers, a group of young women who carried the supersoldiers to term in exchange for a considerable sum of money provided by Manticore. After birth the X5s were immediately taken from their mothers and placed into the care of Manticore handlers. As the X5s matured and grew, they endured rigorous and brutal physical, mental, and psychological training intended to supplement their superior abilities with advanced special forces training.

Supervised by Colonel Lydecker, the techniques used were exceptionally harsh and were intended to mold them into obedient, efficient, amoral killing-machines who would happily perform even the most dangerous or morally questionable assignments without question or argument. As they were kept separated from the outside world and knew only their strict, military surroundings, this training was mostly successful, until Eva (X5-766) defied orders and was shot and killed by Lydecker in 2009. After this incident, twelve of the X5s in Eva's unit, including Max (X5-452), rebelled against their handlers and escaped from Manticore's Gillette, Wyoming facility. Led by Zack (X5-599), the twelve ten-year old X5s managed to reach the facility's perimeter fence, using teamwork and the skills they learned from their special training to avoid and evade the teams of Manticore soldiers searching the surrounding forest for them. After successfully evading recapture and escaping into the world, the twelve escapees would attempt to blend in with the ordinary civilian populace and live normal lives, while simultaneously living on the run, constantly having to avoid the authorities and their military creators.

Following the destruction of the Manticore organization in 2020, all the X5s and other transgenics are left to find a new place in the world, blending in where possible, and persecuted by both the Familiars and humans who see them as "freaks". Many transgenics take refuge in a part of the Seattle area nicknamed Terminal City, where human habitation is impossible due to the breakout of biological and chemical hazards that the transgenics are immune to. Terminal City becomes the home of a transgenic nation of sorts.

X5s are capable of having children, both with humans and with each other, through the normal human method of sexual reproduction. With the destruction of the original DNA database, this is the only way the species will survive.

Powers and Abilities[]

"Suffice to say, you have abilities that could not be described as...normal." —Phil to Max Guevara, I and I Am a Camera

Although outwardly they appear to be ordinary humans, the X5s possess abilities that far surpass the human norm. The feline DNA used to enhance the X5s physical combat abilities granted them superior strength, speed, stamina, reflexes, agility and durability as well as exceptional night vision and greatly improved olfactory sensation and auditory perception capabilities. Combined with one to two decades of advanced training in martial arts, close quarters combat, sharpshooting, firearms, stealth maneuvers, infiltration, espionage, communications, languages, electronic-hacking, and computer technology, the X5s quickly grew into extraordinarily powerful and astute soldiers and fighters. Although the twelve '09 escapees only underwent ten years of training before staging their escape, they are still virtually unstoppable when facing large numbers of unarmed ordinary humans.

Shared abilities and characteristics of X5 model supersoldiers

  • Enhanced Strength: An X5's muscular structure is exceptionally dense and powerful. They are capable of easily lifting at least 3-5 times their body weight, jumping incredible distances and heights and overpowering virtually any non-transgenic individual they engage in combat. This improved strength not only makes a X5 extremely formidable in hand-to-hand combat, but also allows them to punch and kick through doors, walls, plywood and thin metal, snap a human's spinal column with merely thumb and forefinger, knock an ordinary person unconscious with one solid blow to the head and lift and carry large and heavy objects, weapons, and combat gear with relative ease.
  • Enhanced Speed: X5s can run and move at speeds that are far beyond the physical limits of even the finest human athlete. They can maneuver at speeds of at least 50 mph, allowing them to easily outrun any human, and are capable of moving so fast that they blur, which makes it nearly impossible for a non-transgenic to perceive their movements when they are sprinting or moving at full speed.
  • Enhanced Reflexes: The reflexes of a X5 are similarly enhanced and are far greater than normal. In combination with their speed, their reflexes allow them to dodge almost any attack. However they have only been shown to be capable of dodging semi-automatic fire and quick bursts and when surrounded by multiple assailants armed with assault rifles or machine guns they most often are forced to either take cover or take out their attackers as quickly as possible.
  • Enhanced Stamina: An X5's advanced musculature produces less fatigue toxins during physical activity than an ordinary human. This allows them to exert themselves for much longer periods of time before fatigue begins to impair them. At their peak, a healthy, uninjured X5 can exert themselves for several hours before the build-up of fatigue toxins in their blood begins to weaken their muscles. Some have been shown to not need to sleep.
  • Enhanced Agility: An X5's agility, balance, and bodily coordination are all enhanced to levels that are equal to, or in most cases beyond, the natural physical limits of even a Olympic athlete. X5s are extremely limber and their tendons and connective tissues are twice as elastic as the average human being's. They can perform difficult acrobatics such as flipping forward hand-over-hand for ten feet between a floor and shoulder-height laser grid with ease. They can also easily perform any complicated sequence of gymnastics stunts such as flips, rolls, and springs at speeds and angles that would be highly difficult or impossible for a ordinary human.
  • Enhanced Durability: An X5's body is physically tougher and more resistant to injury than the body of a normal human. Although they can still be damaged and killed by knives, stabbing weapons, bullets, shrapnel, and kinetic impact, their bodies hold together much better than normal. They can withstand great impacts, such as falling from a height of several stories or being struck by a opponent of similar or greater physical strength, that would severely injure or kill a normal human with little to no discomfort.
  • Enhanced Immune System and Metabolism: The metabolism and immune system of the X5s is greatly enhanced. They are virtually immune to most poisons and drugs, except in very large doses, and their accelerated metabolism allows them to stay in near perfect shape with only light exercise. This also makes it extremely difficult for them to become intoxicated from alcohol. X5s are also immune to most standard bio-warfare agents and diseases and it is nearly impossible for them to catch a cold or common flu.
  • Enhanced Regenerative Capabilities: The X5s were engineered with a massive amount of raw stem cells in their blood, giving them and their blood accelerated healing abilities. They have been able to heal and fully recover from injuries such as gunshot wounds, broken bones, damaged organs, and pulled and/or torn muscles at incredible rates. Gunshots have been shown to heal in matter of a few hours to the point where an X5 can fight, with no difficulty. Their blood also has regenerative properties as shown healing the paralysis of a non-transgenic individual. Even teeth have also been shown to grow back after being removed, as well as growing in faster than non-transgenics.
  • Enhanced Senses: X5s senses are enhanced to levels passed human. Their eyesight allows them to see in the dark and also at telescopic/microscopic levels, hear heartbeats from meters away and frequencies undetectable by humans, determine the chemical composition of objects and track objects by smell, dissect food ingredients by taste, and determine fabrics by touch.
  • Enhanced Intelligence: In addition to their superior physique, X5s possess a genius level I.Q. and problem-solving skills. They are very gifted at assessing people and situations, which makes them highly adaptive to change and able to learn and mimic with extreme speed and accuracy. Eidetic memory and parallel processing are just a few skills given by their enhanced intelligence. 
  • Enhanced Dexterity: X5s possess perfect muscle control,  they can perform any physical act without difficulty. They can perform very precise muscle movements such as complex billiards shots and perform dexterous task with virtually no practice beforehand rapidly and flawlessly. They can copy any movement/action after seeing it performed once. They can control their own vocal cords allowing them to speak, sing, whisper, yell, hum, etc. in any pitch, voice or tone they want.
  • Skills: X5s, meant to be the (transgenic) officers, were exceptionally well trained and suited for military combat, strategy, and espionage (including various weapons and martial arts). All X5s endured brutal physical and mental training and rigid discipline (brainwashing) from childhood. The training combined with the enhanced physique makes them nearly unstoppable when facing normal humans, though they are by no means invincible. Trained as Manticore supersoldiers/assassins, some assumptions are that: X5s are highly skilled in CQB, recon, infiltration, tracking, observation, escape and evasion, espionage, computers, explosives, and handling vehicles (including various military planes and helicopters), have achieved fluency in many languages, and have a black belt in various martial arts such as Krav Maga, Taekwondo, and Judo. X5s, as children, were trained to hold their breath for four minutes and can hold their breath for much longer as adults. Alec (pre-series, as X5-494) became a concert-level pianist in less than a day in preparation for the Berrisford mission.


The X5 and X5R series are both susceptible to seizures due to low levels of serotonin. At Manticore, tryptophan is administered daily to control the seizures, but Max and the other '09 escapees must find other means of obtaining tryptophan. When Max was imprisoned and had a seizure, she drank goat milk, which contains tryptophan, but she usually takes tryptophan tablets. When she was recaptured by Manticore, they "fixed" her, thus curing her seizures.

Female x5s go into heat two to three times per year because of their feline DNA.

At least four of the X5 group have developed a fatal genetic problem, "a form of progeria similar to Werner syndrome. It's a spontaneous and rapid mutation of the genome, that expresses in the form of accelerated aging".

Known X5s[]

2009 Escapees[]

Name Designation
Ben X5-493
Brin X5-734
Jondy X5-210
Kavi (possibly X5-101, 386 or 344)
Krit X5-471
Max X5-452
Seth (possibly X5-101, 386 or 344)
Syl X5-701
Tinga X5-656
Vada (possibly X5-101, 386 or 344)
Zack X5-599
Zane X5-205

Other Members of Max's Unit[]

Name Designation
Eva X5-766 (killed during escape)
Jace X5-798 (stayed behind)
Jack X5-417 (died of seizures before escape)
  • All the X5s in Max's unit considered each other as brothers and sisters, though this relation was not genetic. Their only close blood relatives are their twins, whose existence they were unaware of while at Manticore.

Other X5[]




X5-494 (twin of Ben/493)


X5-472 (twin of Krit/471)


X5-657 (twin of Tinga/656)


X5-735 (twin of Brin/734)


X5-600 (twin of Zack/599)


X5-453 (twin of Max/452)


X5-206 (twin of Zane/205)


X5-211 (twin of Jondy /210)


X5-418 (twin of Jack/417)




X5-510 or 511






N/A (daughter of Gem)

Human/X5 Hybrids[]

See Also[]