The SYSTEMatic Mark III was a heavily armed battlesuit designed by SYSTEM to destroy Hardware. Over time, Hardware had consistently defeated SYSTEM operatives equipped with the precursor versions of the SYSTEMatic armor.
The cell leaders of SYSTEM realized they needed a new strategy to destroy Hardware. They hired Gizmo as a consultant in designing a new class of SYSTEMatic. SYSTEM supplied Gizmo with the latest data on Hardware's armor they had. He incorporated this into a prototype designed to neutralize Hardware. SYSTEM approved of the redesign and ordered the construction of an additional four suits.
SYSTEM planned to sell the other Mark III suits to the criminal syndicate Intergang to establish an alliance between the two organizations. SYSTEM intentionally leaked the route of the SYSTEM convoy transporting the suits so Hardware would be lured into battle with one of their agents wearing the.prototype Mark III armor. Hardware took the bait when he attacked the convoy in Texas as it crossed the U.S-Mexico border. Two of the Mark III armors were destroyed early in the attack, but Hardware was then ambushed by the prototype Mark III. Despite interference from teen superhero Blue Beetle, the Mark III prototype soundly defeated Hardware by using an energy-draining "shutdown mechanism." Instead of killing the helpless Hardware, the prototype left him for dead to join the convoy with their rendezvous with Intergang.
This proved to be a grave mistake. After Blue Beetle recharged his armor, Hardware constructed a power source shield to protect his suit from the Mark III prototype's primary weapon. Thus, the prototype was put at a serious disadvantage when Hardware and Blue Beetle later attacked the warehouse where SYSTEM would complete their sale to Intergang. However, the two heroes found themselves outnumbered when the SYSTEM and Intergang criminals armed themselves with energy based weaponry to back up the prototype. Thinking quickly, Blue Beetle and Hardware interfaced their armors to generate a powerful energy blast that fused the Mark III prototype's systems and stunned its pilot. The armored heroes then fired a second energy blast to stun the remaining criminals before they could flee.
SYSTEM was not pleased with this, but Gizmo pointed out that the Mark III had provided data to improve the next generation of SYSTEMatic armors. He then revealed the blueprints for the SYSTEMatic Mark X, which he boasted was technologically a "hundred steps ahead" of the Mark III.
Standing about 10 feet tall, the SYSTEMatic Mark III models were composed of a classified steel alloy with a high tensile strength and a very high melting point. They were designed specifically to deal with and neutralize Hardware's armor. To this end, the Mark III had the following capabilities:
- Damage Resistance: As a result of their construction, the Mark III could withstand intense heat and physical damage. For example, a direct hit from one of Hardware's explosive Omnicannon shells would just scratch the suit.
- Shutdown Mechanism: Its primary weapon was the mechanism designed to quickly drains all power from Hardware's armor, leaving him helpless. The device was activated by pressing a button on the Mark III's chest-plate. Hardware developed a power source shield that could protect his armor from this effect.
- Neodymium Magnets: Its secondary weapon was a series of neodymium magnets within the suit's right hand which generated a powerful magnetic field that could disable electronic systems.
- Energy Cannon: Its final weapon was an energy cannon mounted on its left arm.
The Mark III also had features common to earlier SYSTEMatic armors.
- Superhuman Strength: An exoskeleton that increases the wearer's strength to superhuman levels.
- Life Support Systems
- Communications Array
To aid in psychological warfare, the Mark III was designed with a very monstrous appearance that combines elements of the mythical one-eyed cyclops and the goat-like satyr.
- The Mark III was part of Hardware's introduction into the New Earth continuity. It was implied that the stories featuring the previous version were also inserted into the New Earth continuity.
- Appearances of SYSTEMatic Armor MK III
- Item Gallery: SYSTEMatic Armor MK III
- Images featuring SYSTEMatic Armor MK III
Links and References