As a child, young Julio Esteban Richter was forced to watch his father, an arms merchant, being killed by the time-tossed villain known as Stryfe. Later, Rictor was captured by the anti-mutant organization called the Right, who connected him to a machine that amplified his already uncontrollable power of earthquake generation to wreak havoc in San Francisco. Rictor was freed by the original X-Factor team and was accepted by them as a trainee member. During the chaos, he was assisted by Boom Boom, who talked him out of a severe emotional crisis. He was recaptured by the Right shortly afterwards, but was again freed by X-Factor.
Rictor and his friends spent much time living on the sentient craft named 'Ship'. This was the base for X-Factor whom he helped a few times. For a time, Rictor was part of the group known as the X-Terminators. As a member of the X-Terminators, he contended with N'astirh and his demons during the Inferno attack. The team folded into the New Mutants after the events of Inferno. Rictor developed romantic feelings for Wolfsbane while on the team. Rictor and friends traveled to Asgard and battled Hela, where he assumed a protective role over her, even helping her pass by Garm. Rictor would later face former X-Factor ally Caliban, who had become the latest Horseman of Apocalypse known as Death, as well as Sabretooth battling in the Morlocks tunnels under New York. Rictor was severely injured by Sabretooth, but was saved by Cable and the other New Mutants. Alongside the New Mutants, he assisted Cable in fighting Stryfe and the Mutant Liberation Front. Rictor was later captured alongside Storm, Boom Boom, Wolfsbane, and Warlock by forces of the island nation Genosha. Only he and Boom Boom escaped unscathed. The combined efforts of the X-Men, X-Factor, and New Mutants led to him being freed and Rictor would be instrumental in toppling the Genoshan government. During the adventure, Rictor shared a heartfelt kiss with Wolfsbane and was later heart-broken when she chose (a bit against her will) to stay behind. After the business in Genosha, Rictor left the New Mutants with the intent to bring Wolfsbane back from Genosha. Rictor was by then convinced that Cable — from whom Stryfe had been cloned — was the man who killed his father, and he agreed to join the Canadian government's Weapon P.R.I.M.E. team. The team's sole purpose was the apprehension of Cable, but thanks to both Cable and the New Mutants now known as X-Force, this was averted.
Rictor came to join X-Force, and aided them in saving Sunspot from Gideon. Rictor and X-Force were then captured by the X-Men and X-Factor who were seeking Cable for an entirely different crime, the attempted murder of Professor X. This had also been perpetrated by Stryfe. Rictor would meet up with Wolfsbane, again sharing a kiss. This ended badly, with Wolfsbane accidentally biting him. Rictor and the X-Force team were at first held captive in the X-Mansion, before being officially released. Alongside X-Force, he battled War Machine aboard Graymalkin. Alongside X-Force, he rescued the captive X-Force members from Gideon and the Externals. The team used the Mansion for a time as their headquarters before leaving. Rictor would later leave X-Force when his cousin and uncle were shot during an arms deal, only to return when his close friend Shatterstar was undergoing an identity crisis. Shatterstar decided to accompany Rictor to the Richter home in Mexico to try and end Rictor's family's arms-dealing business. Both characters have since appeared separately so one assumes they succeeded.
M-Day and X-Factor Investigations
Rictor is one of the mutants to lose his powers on M-Day. He again attempts suicide but is overcome by confusion and doubt. A rogue duplicate of Jamie Madrox nearly kills him but his life is saved by Monet St. Croix, a former member of Generation X. After some convincing from Monet and a gentle nudge from Layla Miller, he joins X-Factor Investigations under the employ of Jamie Madrox, the Multiple Man. He also finds Siryn after she has been attacked and kidnapped and becomes extremely mistrustful of Layla Miller. When the Superhuman Registration Act is introduced, Rictor and Monet sign up willingly but side with the rest of X-Factor against the pro-registration heroes. Rictor visits Quicksilver, who takes an interest in Rictor being depowered and discusses the possibility of getting his powers back. When Madrox brings Pietro up, Rictor jokes about having had a sexual relationship with him. Madrox then makes a joking comment about making Shatterstar jealous, causing Rictor to become flustered. Quicksilver later manipulates Rictor, empowering him, in a plan to give other ex-mutants their powers. Unfortunately the process is unstable and several of these ex-mutants explode. Rictor confronts Quicksilver again, ending up with Rictor apparently depowered one more time and the mutagenic Terrigen Crystals in Quicksilver's body destroyed. Afterwards, Wolfsbane and a distraught Rictor share a sexual encounter, but this new aspect of their relationship is marred by multiple arguments. During that time Rictor had several Terrigen Crystals embedded in his back (the remnants from the exploding crystals from Quicksilver), which helped him to defeat Josef Huber.
Rictor is asked to infiltrate the Purifiers, as he is still depowered. In an effort to gain the trust of the Purifiers, he, as planned with X-Men, saves them from an attack from Wolfsbane. Rictor then informs the X-Men that the Purifiers' base extends beyond New York and all over America. He also catches the New X-Men sneaking around in the Purifier base and when they are ambushed by the Reavers, he helps Pixie to focus while using a teleportation spell.
Divided We Stand
While walking down the street, he sees a prostitute who looks just like Layla. When he tries to follow her thinking she is Layla, he gets into a fight with an ex-mutant with horns in his head. He kicks him in the crotch and eventually gets into a fight with the prostitute's pimps until Strong Guy steps in. He is later escorted to the hospital where he learns that a lot of fights have been breaking out all over Mutant Town. He is the last to learn that Rahne has left and ends up captured by Arcade when he tries to leave X-Factor. He eventually frees himself and finds that the person who hired Arcade is Taylor, the Purifier who he tricked into letting him into their organization. He later relocates with the rest of X-Factor to Detroit.
A seemingly possessed Shatterstar makes a return in X-Factor #43, attacking Strong Guy and Rictor, with his hair cut short and his eyes glowing pink, saying only the name "Cortex". After a brief fight, Shatterstar is broken out of his trance-like state. Upon recognizing Rictor, the two grab one another and finally share a kiss.
Powers and Abilities
After he lost his powers in M-day. Quicksilver's Terrigen mutations restored his powers briefly. Yet once again, he is without none.
- Seismic Energy Manipulation: capable of generating and releasing seismic energy and tremendously powerful waves of vibrations in any object he came into physical contact with, the vibrations starting in his body, and then emanating outwards, mostly through his fingers, causing objects to shatter or crumble and also using it to create earthquakes, shock-waves or otherwise transport earth matter. When used against objects with a larger surface, the effects were much like an earthquake. The extent of Rictor's power was never fully explored. His powers appeared to affect organic objects in much the same way as inorganic ones.
- Seismic Energy Immunity: Rictor was immune to the harmful effects of the vibrations he created.
- Power Immunity: While fighting The Isolationist, Rictor was shown to be immune to every one of Huber's powers. This was due to the Terrigen crystals embedded in Rictor's skin. The crystals were shown to fall into the sewer. It is unknown if he still retains this immunity.
He is a competent hand-to-hand combatant.