• 86 results
  • 1
  • 2
Avatar image for veshark
#1 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

Winter Soldier (Veshark)

Bucky Barnes
Bucky Barnes

VS.

Nightwing (ComicStooge)

Dick Grayson
Dick Grayson

Conditions

  • Winter Soldier is post-Fear Itself, Nightwing is Pre-52
  • Win by Death, KO, or Incap
  • In-character, random encounter
  • Winter Soldier is armed with a M16 rifle, his pistol, and an assortment of grenades
  • Nightwing is armed with his escrima sticks, assorted Wing-Dings, and thermo-charge/nonlethal grenades

Battlefield

University parking lot, night
University parking lot, night
  • Completely abandoned (save for hot co-eds running around. Kidding.)
  • Random encounter, combatants start in visual range of one another
Avatar image for veshark
#2 Posted by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@comicstooge Have a look-through and see if it needs changes, man. Oh, I need you to confirm Nightwing's gear too.

Avatar image for comicstooge
#3 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark said:

@comicstooge Have a look-through and see if it needs changes, man. Oh, I need you to confirm Nightwing's gear too.

His standard suit with countermeasures, assorted wingdings, a thermocharge and non-lethal grenades will be fine. :)

Avatar image for veshark
#4 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark said:

@comicstooge Have a look-through and see if it needs changes, man. Oh, I need you to confirm Nightwing's gear too.

His standard suit with countermeasures, assorted wingdings, thermocharge and non-lethal grenades will be fine. :)

Well the suit's a given, but I'll add in the rest.

Would you like to go first, or should I?

Avatar image for comicstooge
#5 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark said:

@comicstooge said:

@veshark said:

@comicstooge Have a look-through and see if it needs changes, man. Oh, I need you to confirm Nightwing's gear too.

His standard suit with countermeasures, assorted wingdings, thermocharge and non-lethal grenades will be fine. :)

Well the suit's a given, but I'll add in the rest.

Would you like to go first, or should I?

Would you mind starting? I'm going to bed shortly.

Avatar image for veshark
#6 Posted by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark said:

@comicstooge said:

@veshark said:

@comicstooge Have a look-through and see if it needs changes, man. Oh, I need you to confirm Nightwing's gear too.

His standard suit with countermeasures, assorted wingdings, thermocharge and non-lethal grenades will be fine. :)

Well the suit's a given, but I'll add in the rest.

Would you like to go first, or should I?

Would you mind starting? I'm going to bed shortly.

I'll get a post up first thing in the morning, CS. I'm kinda indisposed at the moment ;)

Avatar image for allstarsuperman
#7 Edited by AllStarSuperman (42637 posts) - - Show Bio

this will be interesting

Avatar image for comicstooge
#8 Posted by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark said:

@comicstooge said:

@veshark said:

@comicstooge said:

@veshark said:

@comicstooge Have a look-through and see if it needs changes, man. Oh, I need you to confirm Nightwing's gear too.

His standard suit with countermeasures, assorted wingdings, thermocharge and non-lethal grenades will be fine. :)

Well the suit's a given, but I'll add in the rest.

Would you like to go first, or should I?

Would you mind starting? I'm going to bed shortly.

I'll get a post up first thing in the morning, CS. I'm kinda indisposed at the moment ;)

That's all good, man. Whenever you're ready.

Avatar image for veshark
#9 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@comicstooge Sorry this took so long, man, but it's been a bit of a busy day. Alright, let's get this debate started. May the best sidekick-turned-solo-hero win!

Oh and @allstarsuperman, you owe @dondave 10 cents for that comment. ;)

Winter Soldier
Winter Soldier

Introduction

For those unfamiliar with the character, Bucky Barnes started out as Captain America’s sidekick in the days of WWII. From 1941 on, he participated on countless covert operations with the Invaders, and served as the team’s scout/assassin until his ‘death’ in ’45.

No Caption Provided

Bucky was recovered by the Russians, and eventually reprogrammed into the Winter Soldier. From ’54 to ’73, the Winter Soldier was responsible for numerous key assassinations. He was so good at his job that it wasn’t until the 2000s that S.H.I.E.L.D. could even confirmhisexistence.

No Caption Provided

Eventually though, Bucky was able to restore his memories, and briefly took on the mantle of Captain America. After Steve’s return, Bucky was seemingly killed again in Fear Itself, but actually survived. At present, he has readopted the Winter Soldier identity.

To surmise, Bucky Barnes has been a soldier, an assassin, and even a superhero. He has been in combat, and fought skilled opponents across three decades of missions. Now with that quick backstory over with, let’s get down to the Winter Soldier himself.

Physicals

We’ll kick off the Physicals section by taking a look at the Winter Soldier’s strength levels. Now before we get to the bionic arm, let’s cover Bucky’s base-level strength. Even without the arm, Buck is still an incredibly powerful peak human, as the following feats will attest to…

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3
  1. First, we have a showing of Buck’s striking power. A single blow from his normal arm sends the 132kg Crossbones flying across the room, stunning him so badly that Bones can’t even get up.
  2. Next up, Bucky's lifting strength. Buck grabs a single mook, and hoists him into the air with his ordinary arm. It’s already difficult to lift an entire man overhead, but to do it with one arm and zero effort?
  3. And lastly, a particularly amusing one: Buck kicks a couch at Viper, and then finishes him off with a single kick. One kick KOes the villain; and Viper is down-and-out for the remainder of the fight.

With Winter Soldier’s base-strength showings out of the way, let’s move on to the bionic arm. Now his artificial arm is cutting-edge S.H.I.E.L.D. tech, and aside from being equipped with several surprises, it also gives Buck the added edge of superhuman strength:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3
  1. Wrecker is a 40-tonner Thor villain, yet he grimaces with the hit from Winter Soldier’s bionic arm. Note how the arm doesn’t even shatter, which is good showing of its durability.
  2. A bionic arm punch sends the 191kg Mr. Hyde flying. Mr. Hyde is easily a 50-70 tonner; we even see him casually tossing a motorcycle skywards in the same page.
  3. Bucky’s arm is able to stun 50s Captain America so bad that he collapses. Now yes, the villain does recover, but remember…Steve himself can tank hits from Namor, and 50s Cap is stated to be twice his physical superior. Making it all the more notable that Buck’s bionic arm was even able to temporarily drop him.

To cap the Physicals section off, let’s end this on Winter Soldier’s agility/reaction time. Here’s a scan of Bucky moving fast enough to avoid two shots from a gunship, then reacting in time to shield himself from the 3rd shot. He’s even reaching for the shield as he evades the bullets:

No Caption Provided

And then Bucky consciously dodges the 4th shot, and readies himself in time to block the 5th one. In this one page alone, Buck has shown remarkable speed to avoid being hit, and impressive reflexes/agility to dodge the gunfire and shield himself.

Bear in mind also, that helicopters are generally armed with high-caliber guns, which have a far higher RPM than most conventional firearms. Meaning that those are some damn fast bullets that Buck was able to avoid, dodge, and react to. They weren’t exactly pistol or rifle rounds.

Fighting Skills

Nick Fury once stated that Bucky was “deadly with a knife or rifle – and even deadlier hand-to-hand”. General Phillips, the man who recruited Steve Rogers; called Bucky ‘the best natural fighter’ he’d seen. Bucky was trained under the same teachers who taught master-of-HTH Captain America. And as the Winter Soldier, he was responsible for training Soviet agents like Widow and the Zephyr (the latter considered the deadliest KGB assassins).

Now of course I could show Bucky defeating any number of skilled characters (and believe me, there are more than a few), but I thought I’d start off here instead. A character can be a great fighter and all, but it’s when they’re at a severe disadvantage that great showings come out.

In these next set of scans, Winter Soldier has been captured and an adamantium straitjacket secured around his torso and arms. His bionic arm is now useless (adamantium being unbreakable and all), but Bucky still manages to escape:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

Try holding your hands behind your back, and jumping high enough to kick someone at face level (Okay, now stop doing it, reader, you look stupid). Buck is able to boot one punk in the face, react fast enough to dodge a gun firing at near point-blank range

…Get up and headbutt the second punk, knocking him out cold. Then Buck runs towards three other grunts, taking two of them out with separate flying kicks, before rendering the last one unconscious with a brutal knee-blow.

And he accomplished all this right after being exposed to intense hallucinogenic drugs as psychological torture, an electrical shock, and his face getting a stomping from this tub of lard. Severe. Disadvantage.

And speaking of disadvantage, here’s another great showing on Winter Soldier’s part, where he gets ambushed by Crossbones and Red Skull’s daughter, Sin.

Now Sin is largely irrelevant, but Crossbones himself is a serious threat. We’re talking about Taskmaster’s prized pupil; someone who kills werewolves with his bare hands and regularly gave the Serum-enhanced Cap a tough fight.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Yet Bucky is still able turn the tables on them and win this encounter. After tanking two surprise hits from Crossbones, Winter Soldier then proceeds to lay both of them on their butts with just a handful of punches. Sin is knocked out, and Crossbones can’t even get up to defend himself.

But Winter Soldier’s fighting skills aren’t just limited to the physical, as he’s always shown a great amount of situational-awareness, and consistently displays battlefield improvisation and on-the-fly tactics. All of which are important in a random encounter such as this.

The two scans that follow really nail home my point, as we see Bucky using his shield, pistol, and quick thinking, to easily incapacitate four R.A.I.D. agents:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

First we see Bucky improvising with the structure behind the three goons, using it to deflect the shield at a specific angle. This throw also serves to fool the enemy into thinking he made a mistake. With their guard down, Buck proceeds to accurately drop all three with his pistol.

Then we see that the shield hits the fourth R.A.I.D. agent behind him, who was about to get the drop on Black Widow. Meaning that Buck had already noticed the fourth punk behind him, and despite not looking over his shoulder, is still able to accurately make that near-impossible shot.

Barnes used the terrain to his advantage, fooled the enemy, utilized his arsenal well, made a complex shield throw without even looking at his target, and saved his teammate…all in the span of two pages. Combat tactics and improvisation indeed.

Gear

Now I won’t be covering this section too much for this introductory post, but I’ll just give a quick overview. As the OP conditions state, Bucky comes into this fight with his M16 assault rifle (with ammo), his specialized handgun, and an assortment of grenades.

I’ll cover them more later in the debate, but for now, I’ll just drop this quick marksmanship feat for Winter Soldier:

No Caption Provided

Here, Bucky is able to perfectly react to and accurately shoot three arrows in midair. These arrows were shot by Hawkeye, not some featless henchman, and the heavy rain looks like it really obscures the battlefield. Making Buck’s shots all the more impressive.

Conclusion

To summarize, I’ve given a comprehensive breakdown of Winter Soldier’s physical capabilities, his level of fighting skills and strategic mind, and a brief look at his equipment. I’ll go deeper into detail on why he can beat Nightwing in the next round, but I think this will suffice for now. Your turn, CS – I’m looking forward to it.

Avatar image for allstarsuperman
#10 Posted by AllStarSuperman (42637 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark: why do i owe Dondave 10 cents?

Avatar image for comicstooge
#11 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark

While Bucky is obviously a highly impressive physical specimen, Nightwing is easily comparable to him and surpasses him in a criteria or two.

Firstly, in terms of physical strength, here's Dick's striking ability:

Nightwing's strikes have busted up Blockbuster:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

Yet Blockbuster could tangle with Johny Henry Irons in one of his earlier Steel suits:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

He's kicked Brutale through a car door:

No Caption Provided

And he's struck a dude so hard he went flying out a window (just look at the distance he went):

No Caption Provided

And, as Batman, he kicked through a man's Titanium alloy legs:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

In terms of lifting strength, Grayson is probably the second strongest in the Batfamily, besides Bruce himself:

He's used a piano as a battering ram:

No Caption Provided

Tossed KGBeast like a ragdoll:

No Caption Provided

And he's dragged a man by one hand while riding a motorcycle:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

He's even wrestled with a flipping Whale, while underwater! O_o

No Caption Provided

And he's physically restrained a Man-Bat:

No Caption Provided

And used a fridge as a weapon:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

So, if Dick and Bucky wrestled using Bucky's right, I'm confident Grayson would win. ;)

That pesky left arm though, is something I'll counter shortly.

But onto agility/speed. This is something where I'm quite confident Richard holds an edge in.

Firstly, it's been stated by both Catwoman and Nightrunner that Dick is actually faster then Bruce:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Now I'll work at proving those statements.

In Bludhaven, Nightwing and Batman were ambushed by gun wielding enemies. Dick reacted first to push Bruce out of the way:

No Caption Provided

This is impressive considering Bruce can do this:

No Caption Provided

But, onto other showings of speed

He's casually avoided strikes from Catwoman:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

Dodged bullets from entire SWAT teams:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6

Danced around gunfire from the cyborg assassin Killshot:

No Caption Provided

Avoided a bullet at point blank range, more then once:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

And he's avoided a superspeed kick from Jessie Quick:

No Caption Provided

And he's moved faster then Nemesis can even see:

No Caption Provided

And he's even moved fast enough to use Firefly as a human shield in order to block the bullets fired at him:

No Caption Provided

No Caption Provided

Bucky's no slouch in the speed department, but Dick's got his number on that. :)

Bucky will have trouble hitting Grayson with that bionic arm of his.

Speaking of that bionic arm, while it looks and feels like any regular arm, Nightwing has a way of figuring out that it actually isn't.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Biometric scanners, that's how.

Once he's aware of Bucky's arm, he'll be even more cautious to avoid it and considering the speed feats I've already shown for Dick, that's gonna be a problem for the Winter Soldier.

In terms of skill, Nightwing is also very impressive.

He's a master of 6 styles, after all:

No Caption Provided

Now onto some showings...

He stalemated a perfect, though insane clone at Batman. This clone was bloodlusted, while Dick was holding back.

While yes, the clone didn't exactly have Bruce's tactical mindset, the sheer number of martial arts at it's disposal make it still a deadly opponent:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10

He used a combination of skill and speed to take out the superhumanly fast Owen Mercer:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

And he's used a combination of speed, skill and striking power to bring down Hardsell, a meta human with invulnerability and super strength:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

He's demonstrated knowledge of nerve strikes as well:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

And he gained a decisive victory against Jason Todd, despite Todd having prep and Nightwing getting electrocuted and drugged:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10

I'll save some more displays for later, but those will do for now.

Now onto tactical ability.

As Robin, he outmaneuvered and tricked Mr Freeze:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6

He used strategy to defeat Raptor, villian wearing LexCorp power armor:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8

He's led most incarnations of the Titans through countless battles, this being just one of them:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10Gallery image 11Gallery image 12

^ Read from the bottom right, sorry.

Even a team of the JLA:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

^ Read from the right, sorry.

His tactical skill is so great he's capable of leading every hero on DC Earth

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

When many heroes were left powerless, it was Dick Grayson who led them using his tactical skill:

No Caption Provided

In a world where Dick Grayson died as Robin, there was no one to replace Bruce after his death in FC, Trigon took over all of DC Earth:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Just goes to show Grayson's leadership and tactical skill.

On the subject of awareness of environment and attune senses:

Nightwing's senses are so attuned he can navigate speeding trains while blindfolded:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5

Nightwing' pretty good at rebounding projectiles himself, as a matter of fact:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

He's saved Supergirl from getting shot by Arsenal with a Kryptonite bullet:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

And he's demonstrated great accuracy without even looking at his targets:

No Caption Provided

And he's used a Wingding to knock a guy out from a far away distance without even looking or exerting any real effort on his part, while lecturing Tarantula:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

To Summarize

Dick Grayson's raw physical strength (discounting the bionic arm, of course) and speed are above that of Bucky's. Their fighting skills are comparable (more evidence will be given), Bucky's chief advantage, his bionic arm, can be quickly discovered by Nightwing through a scan and thereby avoided. His awareness of the environment and tactical skill mean that Bucky isn't about to out-think him or outmaneuver him.

Still though, they're quite evenly matched in almost all categories and I'm interested to see where this debate will go.

@veshark I'm finished my response.

Avatar image for monsterstomp
#12 Posted by MonsterStomp (36559 posts) - - Show Bio

From the looks of the opening arguments, this is going to be tough.

Avatar image for veshark
#13 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@comicstooge Looking good so far, man, you're breaking out the big guns now. I look forward to responding to this. Tag me again when you're finished?

@veshark: why do i owe Dondave 10 cents?

It's a running joke....Dondave likes to drop into CaV threads and leave a short comment like 'This will be good' ;)

Avatar image for comicstooge
#14 Posted by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark said:

@comicstooge Looking good so far, man, you're breaking out the big guns now. I look forward to responding to this. Tag me again when you're finished?

@allstarsuperman said:

@veshark: why do i owe Dondave 10 cents?

It's a running joke....Dondave likes to drop into CaV threads and leave a short comment like 'This will be good' ;)

@veshark my response is done.

Avatar image for veshark
#15 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@comicstooge Sorry, I was out for dinner. Man…it looks like you dumped the entire Nightwing Capability website in that one post! *cracks knuckles*. Right, let’s get Round 2 started!

No Caption Provided

Physicals

Alright, so let’s kick off with Nightwing’s striking power. Now the only feat I want to address here is the Blockbuster fight, as several factors need to be noted to serve context. One, it’s from Devin Grayson’s run, which already makes it somewhat suspect since this is the guy who wrote ‘Nightwing-was-raped’ in the same issue. His run as a whole is…questionable.

Second, prior to this, Blockbuster has torched Haley’s Circus, blown up Dick’s apartment (killing the tenants), almost blew up Bludhaven’s police station, and killed a reporter in front of Dick. In short, Nightwing is bloodlusted here. He’s basically morals-off and hitting harder than he normally does; heck he even ‘lets’ Tarantula shoot Blockbuster after this.

And third…it doesn’t look at all like Nightwing has ‘busted up’ Blockbuster. It looks like Nightwing’s drawn blood, sure. But Blockbuster’s just ranting on while he gets hit, and he isn’t even retaliating. The strikes don’t even faze his speech, he’s almost rolling with the punches.

In fact, Blockbuster embarrasses Nightwing earlier in the issue, when he was willing to fight. He dodges a bloodlusted Dick, and slams him aside:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

To summarize, a bloodlusted morals-off Nightwing couldn’t bust-up Blockbuster, he just drew some blood. Blockbuster was completely unaffected, did not want to hurt Dick, and still continued his rambling speech. And it’s iffy writing too, because why would a villain in Steel/William Payton’s strength class even be hurt by Dick? Let alone killed with a single bullet?

So, decent showing, but once context is served – very shaky.

As for the rest of his striking power feats, I don’t really have much to add – they’re par for the course for street-levelers. I’ll give you the titanium-alloy one though, that was impressive. With that, let’s move on to Nightwing’s lifting strength feats.

Once again, I just want to address a handful of them. Fridge and piano ones are alright, and the KGBeast one was great. But Dick carrying Phosphorus Rex isn’t much considering the man’s weight and size, and he also has his other arm on the Quad for support.

Restraining a Man-Bat isn’t that noteworthy too, considering Batman took down multiple League of Assassins-trained Man-Bats in Morrison’s first issue. They’re not that tough. Also, just want to point out it’s the three tranquilizers in the bat’s neck that KOs it…not Dick’s hold.

And as for the killer whale…I’m not seeing Dick wrestling it in the scan. I’m seeing him holding onto the upper lip of the whale, and it really isn’t a strength feat if he doesn’t do anything to the whale, no? It's not like Dick is even physically subduing the whale. As I recall, Tim Drake with whale repellant was what stopped this orca.

Whew, that was a handful. But with that out of the way, let’s return back to Winter Soldier’s base strength levels! Now I knew you were going to scan-dump with this one; I could guess from your enthusiasm in our PM haha. Which is why I saved Buck’s better strength feats for now…

In this scan, Bucky (using his normal arm) throws Steve’s shield and cuts off a giant Nazi robot’s leg.

No Caption Provided

Now first off, it’s a backhand toss off to his side, which would be significantly weaker than Buck just throwing it forward. Yet Bucky’s normal arm throw is able to tear through that giant robot’s leg. Of course the shield’s constitution has to be factored in, but the momentum/strength needed for that shield to travel such a far distance…and cut cleanly through that robot is impressive.

Bonus points for marksmanship skills, too. Bucky wasn’t even looking in the direction of the Nazi robot when he made that long-distance and powerful shot.

But that’s not all. Next up is one of my favorite Bucky feats. Basically what happens first is that Falcon punches Scourge. Buck then proceeds to kick Scourge in the stomach, punch Scourge with his normal arm, and then stomp on his face several times – KOing him.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Now what makes this so impressive? That Scourge is better known as Nuke. The Super-Soldier with cybernetic enhancements that gave both Daredevil and Captain America a tough fight. The super-durable psycho who has bulletproof and grenade-proof skin:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

In short, someone who is clearly Street-Level-Plus. And yet Bucky Barnes is able to lay him to waste and KO the punk with a number of hits, without even using his bionic arm! Has Nightwing ever knocked out a villain with this degree of durability before? Using raw strength alone?

That arm wrestling competition’s starting to lean in Buck’s favor right now. And we haven’t even got to the bionic arm yet ;)

As I’ve already covered above, Bucky’s bionic arm grants him superhuman strength, and has inflicted far heavier damage to opponents a lot stronger than Nightwing. In the following scan, Bucky climbs onto a rogue A.I.M. robot and bashes it in, causing the robot to crash and burn.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

And this was the weaker Russian, pre Fury-upgrade version of the arm too. If Winter Soldier’s arm can pummel through robotic armor, it’s going to do a hell of a lot worse to Dick. Let’s look at another scan where Winter Soldier tears of Iron Man’s faceplate.

No Caption Provided

I’m sure you’re already familiar with the Extremis armor – it can take outer-space pressures and tanked a nuclear detonation twice etc. So it’s clearly of sturdy constitution. But Bucky’s bionic arm is able to tear its faceplate right off – even causing the internal systems to warn Tony ‘helmet integrity compromised’.

Regarding Nightwing’s biometric scan visor. Several problems wrong with that. Now let’s assume that Winter Soldier is coming into this with his new human-skin bionic arm, and maybe even the version of the costume with the sleeve over it. Well…

  1. It’s not in-character for Nightwing to scan every foe to figure out their powers, no? Particularly if there's no hint to Buck's arm, so there's no reason for Dick to think he has powers. And don’t tell me he’s going to do it in the heat of battle – that scenario was very different because he started in the shadows.
  2. I know that the scan is ‘biometric’, but does it directly tell Nightwing of their individual capabilities? Because I’m not seeing that in the scan you showed. It might hint to Dick that Buck has a bionic arm, but I doubt it’ll inform him of the arm’s many capabilities.
  3. Lastly, in that page, we see the scanner say ‘Search scan: identification verified’. Indicating that the scan was cross-referenced with a database; that could possibly give Dick info on the villains. The problem is: Bucky comes from a separate universe, so he wouldn’t exist on any Bat-database. Meaning the arm and its capabilities wouldn't be on-file.

With that debunked, let’s sidestep for a bit to agility and speed. Now regarding claims of Nightwing being faster than Batman…those are just observations. Opinions, not empirical statements that can be quantified. And using that one scan of Nightwing pushing Batman aside…I don’t know…that’s not exactly definitive proof that Dick is any faster.

It could be any number of factors – maybe Dick noticed the guns first, maybe Batman’s attention was elsewhere. If Character A saving Character B constituted one being faster than the other, plenty of comic characters would be unfairly gauged. This one scan alone seems to be an isolated incident, and unless there’s consistency, I’m going to have to disagree that Dick is faster than Bats. Even if only ‘by a whisker’.

But perhaps the strongest evidence pointing to this is their fight in Batman #600. Nightwing sucker-punches Batman and wants to fight him. But Bats just escapes away. Nightwing chases after him, and he can’t even tag the Dark Knight!

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7

Tim Drake even comments, ‘He (Dick) can’t land a punch…this is impossible.’ He manages to dodge a punch or two from Bats, but Dick can't even get one hit in. I think that more or less definitively proves that Nightwing is nowhere near Batman’s speed levels.

Moving on to Dick’s reaction feats. Once again, most of them are alright, but I just want to drop a point regarding one. Dick dodging Jesse Quick’s kick isn’t really one to consider, simply because Quick isn’t intentionally trying to hit him, just practicing.

Now…here’s the thing about Nightwing’s speed feats. All of the scans you posted of Dick dodging gunfire are great…but they all come from featless fodder or minor characters. Nobody in those scans had reflex showings or marksmanship skills on the same level as Winter Soldier.

We’re talking about someone who managed to cut an incoming arrow from Hawkeye in half. Thoughts to consider:

No Caption Provided
  1. Winter Soldier was busy fighting Wolverine at the time
  2. It’s pouring rain and it’s dark at night - obscuring the battlefield
  3. Hawkeye was using stealth to sneak up on Bucky, and he’s one of Marvel’s finest marksmen. He expresses surprise that Bucky saw him coming
  4. Arrows don’t have gunshot sounds or muzzle flares – they’re completely silent – so there’s no visual or audible warning
  5. Yet Buck was able to react in time, and not just dodge the arrow, but cut it in half with his knife

And it’s not as though Winter Soldier doesn’t have his fair share of reflex feats against both fodder and other major Marvel characters:

Dodging a hail of bullets while swinging from a line:

No Caption Provided

Reacting in time to a close-range shot from a hidden grenade launcher:

No Caption Provided

Fast enough to avoid rounds, using a Cape-Killer as an improvised human shield, and then using that Cape-Killer’s gun to accurately headshot the enemy:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

Dodging gunfire (and using his bionic arm to block several shots) from Dum Dum Dugan, Nick Fury, and a couple of other S.H.I.E.L.D. agents. Fury is an expert marksman:

No Caption Provided

Blocking Widow’s stings in time, when they’re basically at point-blank range, and still being able to follow up with a kick. Widow is an expert markswoman and bullet-timer:

No Caption Provided

Shooting Daredevil’s baton out of the air. DD is an expert marksman and bullet-timer with enhanced senses:

No Caption Provided

Tagging Wolverine, who happens to be a bullet-timer and a very capable speed-blitzer:

No Caption Provided

And so on, so forth. Remember, Bucky’s been using firearms for over three decades now, and he’s accomplished insane feats with Cap’s shield as well. Marksmanship is his game. I will concede that Nightwing might be a little faster, but Buck’s own already impressive reaction time mixed with his accurate aim means a serious problem for Dick.

And while we’re on the subject of Nightwing’s speed, I just want to note that Dick has been tagged countless times before. He’s fast, but he’s not untouchable. Even a point-blank Jason Todd was able to squarely shoot him:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Now yes, Dick was distracted by Damian, but even with those scans of Dick dodging point-blank shots from Tarantula and one random goon, he still gets hit here! By Jason Todd, no less. I mean Dick still has one panel to grimace, and Hood was spouting off a long line in that panel, so it can’t have been a split second. Dick gets hit in the chest and KOed.

And then let’s look at Batman R.I.P., where Dick was defeated by Scorpiana. Now this fight is off-panel, but it was implied that Scorpiana managed to tag Dick with paralyzing venom on a weapon. He ends up unconscious and at her mercy.

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

Now you could argue that Scorpiana is supposed to be ‘enhanced’, but she’s an almost entirely featless character who got her butt KOed…by Batwoman (with some help from the B-list Batmen):

No Caption Provided

So, pretty bad on Dick's part. And last but not least, let’s not forget my personal favorite, where Dick gets tricked and then KOed byCommissioner Gordon! Where are your bullet-reflexes now, Nightwing?

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

In fairness, Dick was injured prior to this, but he had several hours of rest and had recovered enough to take on several Dollotrons.

And before anyone talks about ‘isolated low showings’, all three of these were written by the great Grant Morrison himself. So yeah…once again, Nightwing is fast, definitely. I’m not trying to lowball him. He’s a quick fighter. But the speed gap between him and Winter Soldier isn’t big enough to be a major factor, because Buck has his own response time and aim to fall back on.

Fighting Skills

Now let’s take a look at Nightwing’s fighting skill feats. Again, just gonna raise some counters for a few of them. One, the Bruce clone was mentally-damaged and had nowhere near the skills of the real Batman. Dick even says that his moves are like ‘a song in the hands of a bad player’.

Not to mention that Dick had help from Knight, Squire, and Batwoman. And later on, the Bat-Clone gets set on fire with gasoline (taking even more damage), and Dick only succeeds in KOing it with the help of Batwoman.

And Owen Mercer, for all his speed, doesn’t exactly have a great track record…getting beaten up by Iron Heights guards in Flash, tripped by Catwoman in Salvation Run, had his heart torn out in Blackest Night, shot in the hand by Deadshot….yeeeahh….

What durability feats does Hardsell have (I doubt he's on Nuke's level)? And nerve strikes aren’t going to work on Winter Soldier – his entire outfit covers his whole body save for his face, and the material is all impact-resistant. Also, Buck learned under the same teachers as Cap, and Cap knows pressure points – so Buck should see those moves coming.

Jason Todd is a pretty cool fight, but I want to stress that Jason was bat-crap crazy at this stage and hardly fighting in his right mind or at full-skills level. And there were times in the fight where Jason (using prep time of course), could've pressed the advantage but never did (e.g. he could've shot Nightwing when he was shocked, or attacked Dick when he was hit with fear gas).

Continuing on to Dick’s tactical expertise. These are some great scans, definitely. If there’s one area where Dick easily surpasses Bucky, it’s probably in leadership (fortunately that's not a factor here!). But while they do show his understanding of team strategies, I notice that only two sets cover Nightwing’s ability for solo tactical improvisation. Still, very impressive.

That being said, naturally Bucky is no slouch in coming up with on-the-fly tactics to outsmart opponents. In these next three scans, Winter Soldier easily outsmarts and defeats Wolverine.

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

First Bucky uses his pistol holster to fool Logan’s senses. It essentially acts as a bullseye, luring Wolverine to the perfect spot. At which point Bucky, who’s been hiding in the darkness of a billboard, shoots Wolverine in enough vital organs to put him down. Buck has just taken down one of Marvel’s most seasoned veterans.

Speaking of senses – I have read that ‘The Boys’ issue; and it’s pretty great. But it should be noted that Dick is focused on the task at hand, unlike a battle, where it’s harder to keep sharp. Not to mention that throughout the trip, Dick obviously has a clear advantage – he knows Bludhaven well. Now I’m not saying that it isn’t a good feat, but I’m just pointing all this out.

And for all of Nightwing’s supposed situational-awareness, opponents still quite regularly get the drop on him. I’ve already shown the Scorpiana and embarrassing Commissioner Gordon instance – both of which were able to surprise Dick and KO him, despite whatever reflexes/attuned senses he might have.

In fact, let’s look at another instance where his situational-awareness didn’t help him much. Here, Nightwing gets snuck up on by Bane, and Dick can’t even react in time. Bane's giant shadow is like cast all over the wall. Yet Nightwing ends up slammed against said wall and KOed.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

So while he’s certainly no slouch in the senses department, others still get the drop on him quite frequently. Bear in mind that this was a Venomless Bane who used stealth/strength to easily defeat Nightwing. And that this was written by Chuck Dixon – the definitive Nightwing writer.

And yes, Nightwing does have decent throwing skills, but really that’s Bucky’s forte. I’ve already shown that Winter Soldier is more than capable of scoring good hits without looking at his target (R.A.I.D. agent, the Nazi robot). And Buck has so many shield-throwing feats:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

But perhaps the best one, that showcases Bucky’s understanding of trajectory and timing, is the following:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Not only does Bucky throw the shield with perfect timing, to land right in front of the Senator and block the sniper’s shot (meaning that Buck has insane reflexes and accuracy). But the shield still continues its path of flight, returning back to Bucky’s hand.

Meaning that Bucky threw his shield at just the right moment and at the right speed, to let it stop at the Senator the moment the bullet is fired, and still return back to him. Note that he even times the shield so the bullet hits it right in the shield's center. Perfect prediction.

And then Buck proceeds to charge at Sin and her goons while they're all firing at him - moving fast enough to avoid getting hit.

Now of course Winter Soldier won’t have Cap’s shield here, but his skill and comprehension of trajectory will help him predict and avoid Nightwing’s Wing-Dings and Eskrima sticks.

Conclusion

To summarize, I’ll just run through the foundation of my argument for Winter Soldier. I know there are some aspects that we haven’t fully-covered (gadgets, specific tactics), but this is just a brief rundown of my points for now.

In terms of physicals and strength, Winter Soldier has the clear advantage here. The Nightwing strength feats shown weren’t as convincing, whereas Bucky’s base strength could KO a huge man (Viper) with a single kick, and KOed the bulletproof superhuman Nuke with a handful of blows. And that’s before we even factor in the bionic arm – which more or less cements Bucky’s superiority in this category. One hit from that arm sent 50s Cap toppling to the floor. A single blow lands on Nightwing, and it’s going to be broken bones and a possible knockout.

As for agility and reaction time, I will admit that Nightwing has the slight edge here. But as I covered extensively in that section above, Nightwing has been hit plenty of times before, and he’s not untouchable. Many individuals (Scorpiana, Gordon, Bane) have managed to get the drop on him, and for all his agility, he can be tagged. An enraged Dick was tagged by Blockbuster and failed to even once hit Batman.

Given that Winter Soldier himself has insane reflex feats (dodging helicopter fire, dodging shots from marksmen with actual feats) and has displayed uncanny marksmanship (the R.A.I.D. agents, giant Nazi robot, tagging notable Marvel characters)…I’m arguing that the speed gap isn’t that big of an issue for Bucky. And that he could very likely hit Nightwing, be it in melee or with firearms.

I’ve already debunked Nightwing’s biometric scans – firstly because I don’t see it being in-character or even practical for battle, and also because I doubt its actual functionality. Even if he were to figure out that Winter Soldier has a bionic arm, his scan still can’t inform him of the arm’s hidden capabilities (which we’ll delve into later).

In short, I agree that the two are fairly evenly-matched for now, but things are about to change! So I’ll leave it at that. Your turn, CS.

Avatar image for lvenger
#16 Posted by Lvenger (36181 posts) - - Show Bio

Avatar image for slimj87d
#17 Posted by slimj87d (15634 posts) - - Show Bio
Avatar image for lvenger
#18 Edited by Lvenger (36181 posts) - - Show Bio

@slimj87d: Well obviously you're going to be more excited about this than I am Mr Bucky fanboy ;) But the calibre of these two always makes for a great debate.

Avatar image for slimj87d
#19 Edited by slimj87d (15634 posts) - - Show Bio

@lvenger said:

@slimj87d: Well obviously you're going to be more excited about this than I am Mr Bucky fanboy ;) But the calibre of these two always makes for a great debate.

Yeah, I can't vote on this debate. I have too much of a bias towards Bucky it wouldn't be fair. But Veshark is honestly doing a better job than I could.

Avatar image for lvenger
#20 Posted by Lvenger (36181 posts) - - Show Bio

@slimj87d: Aw that's a shame. But yeah he is doing a great job. Quite impressed with CS' Nightwing knowledge too.

Avatar image for comicstooge
#22 Posted by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark:

Hot damn, sick response, man.

Though, considering the length of your response, the necessary research and etc I have to do to respond to you, plus all the work I have to do at the moment, it may be a day or 2 before I respond to you.

Trust me though, I'm a big Nightwing fan, so I'll definitely be motivated to finish this CAV.

Avatar image for veshark
#23 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark:

Hot damn, sick response, man.

Though, considering the length of your response, the necessary research and etc I have to do to respond to you, plus all the work I have to do at the moment, it may be a day or 2 before I respond to you.

Trust me though, I'm a big Nightwing fan, so I'll definitely be motivated to finish this CAV.

No problem man, I've got a couple of other debates to keep me occupied ;)

Looking forward to your reply - this looks to be an epic CaV.

Avatar image for comicstooge
#24 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark:

Alright, I won't be able to respond in too much detail here, but I'd like to just try to justify my use of some scans and counter some points, before I really get into my proper counter argument.

For one thing, I'd just to say I'm not sure why Nightwing being sexually assaulted makes his feats in the series any less usable. But, I guess that's just personal opinion.

In regards to your point about Blockbuster 'dodging' Dick. It looks to me more like Grayson was kicking in the gun out of his hand.

Here's the scan again for reference:

No Caption Provided

In regards to the whole Steel thing, Steel's earlier armors aren't up to scratch with some of the armors he later employed. He was relatively low-end mid-tier IMO.

And in all fairness, Steel was stomping Blockbuster that he pretty much buggered off to avoid further embarrassment. Nightwing drawing blood from him with a punch isn't all that far fetched. Armored nomex gloves also help a lot to justify the feat.

Dick has other striking feats such as:

Busting through a layer of ice in two strikes:

No Caption Provided

Or here, he kicks metahuman Barry Peirce into a wall. Nevermind the fact that guy is a metahuman, just look at the size of him!

No Caption Provided

He kicks the guy into the wall, KOing him.

That not enough for you? He later punches that same dude directly through a brick wall.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Crossbones is a big dude, but not that big. ;)

Furthermore, I don't see how the KGBeast feat is less impressive then Bucky lifting some random guy, considering Dick slammed him into the wall hard enough to put a big dent in a concrete pillar, then use the guy as a freaking projectile.

The Manbat feat was just showing Dick being capable of putting the creature in and grappling it, before the tranqs hit it,

I figured the underwater whale scene was a feat, due to the first scan where Dick prevents the whale's jaw from closing and making him whale food.

Onto speed, those scans of Dick getting shot by Red Hood. Dick was still relatively new to being Batman. The cape and cowl weighed him down and effectively made him slower:

No Caption Provided

Sorry about that scan being cut in half, but you get the idea.

So it makes sense that Dick wouldn't be able to react as fast as he's normally been shown.

Later, as Batman (when he got more comfortable in the cowl), Dick had no trouble dodging Black Beetle's laser:

No Caption Provided

And avoid laser beams from the Watchtower's defenses, while simultaneously ripping the turrets out of place, modifying the trajectories of their blasts and forcing them to hit each-other, one handed :

No Caption Provided

How's that for situation awareness, strength and speed? ;)

The scans of Scorpiana and Gordon just seem like shoddy writing to me. All characters have some questionable showings from time to time.

Here, Frank Castle surprises Bucky with an elbow to the face, then is fast enough to put a gun up to Bucky's head after he's tackled:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Where were Bucky's amazing reflexes here, hm? ;)

Honestly, fair enough if you try to debunk scans and , but let's not make this a thread of "who has the worst low showings?", it slows the flow of the debate down quite a bit and detracts from the fun (I am in no way trying to have a go at you, at all man, obviously. Just pointing out all characters have inconsistent showings and so-forth).

Onto the Batman thing, lets not forget that Bruce knows Dick better then anyone. He trained him for years, worked day in and day out with him on countless missions and practically raised him.

He knows how Grayson thinks, he knows how Grayson fights etc.

In fact, they literally know eachother so well they can have flawless team work without saying a word.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

It makes sense that Bruce would anticipate Dick's moves given his history with him as Robin, especially when Bruce is the far more strategic and analytical of the two.

And for the record, as for not laying a land of Bruce:

No Caption Provided

No Caption Provided

He grabs him by the cape and throws him down.

Anyway, it's not as if Dick didn't improve over the years, both in terms of fighting skill and physicals...

Allow me to go back to the Bat-Clone feat:

Physically, these Bat-clones were perfect copies of the man himself, though obviously, not mentally.

No Caption Provided

This perfect clone of Batman was then resurrected by the Lazarus Pit, which is known to physically amp the user for a short time after they leave the pit.

Despite that, Dick was still shown to be faster:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

He only really had trouble putting the clone down when it got a second dip into the pit, further increasing it's physicals.

Despite the clone not having Bruce's skill, his physicals were equal, if not superior. Yet Grayson was shown to outreact him.

And you want scans of Nightwing dodging gunfire from a competent shooter?

How about Deathstroke?! :D

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

While he does indeed got tagged in the arm, he was:

1) Carrying and trying to protect his partner

2) Avoiding gunfire from freaking Deathstroke

Need a remind of Slade's aim?:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Or his gun speed?

No Caption Provided

Deathstroke's gun aim is superhuman and is gunspeed is comparable to Deadshot's.

I'll post the rest of my argument when I have time. :)

Avatar image for comicstooge
#25 Posted by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

Now, to post some more about Nightwing's capabilities...

You showed scans of Bucky's performance against the likes of 50's Cap and Nuke. Very impressive. However, Dick also has feats of that level.

Against the likes of Deathstroke. ;)

Granted, he hasn't managed to KO Slade in any of these fights, but I'll still highlight how these feats as they're extremely impressive:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7

It's worth noting Slade and Winter Soldier share several things in common including the whole soldier thing/tactical mind etc.

Despite Slade being superior to Dick basically across the board (except agility_, Dick has been able to disarm Slade of his gun in the first 2 fights, and his sword in the third. He also does a good job of keeping up with him and dodging his attacks. These qualities would serve him well against Bucky, considering he'd have to do the exact same thing.

I think it's also worth noting morals in this fight. While it is true that Winter Soldier can do such things as pull of Iron Man's mask, punch through robots etc, I doubt he would use that sort of strength against a person he's unfamiliar with, especially a guy who is clearly trying to take Bucky out non-lethally. Barne has been in the business long enough to recognize a good guy when he sees one.

For the record, Dick has taken a beating from the meta-human Blockbuster, so while he wouldn't be able to take a bunch from Bucky at full strength, one his weaker punches (something he'd employ against a normal man, for example) is something Grayson could survive without being KO'd:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8

While there's still a lot to cover (and some points I'd like to go back over) I think this response will do for now.

Your turn @veshark. ;)

Avatar image for veshark
#26 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@comicstooge Ding Ding Ding! Get ready for Round 3!

Winter Soldier
Winter Soldier

Physicals

Alright, let’s start off by responding to your arguments. Now, regarding the Blockbuster feat, I just want to point out that I didn’t bring up the Tarantula incident to discount feats from the entire run. If this came across like a somewhat tactless point (I admit my phrasing was poor), I apologize. All I’m noting is that Devin Grayson’s Nightwing work has a lot of issues with it, and I do have actual evidence to back this up, which I’ll get to in a moment.

But the main crux of my counters is still valid. The first being that Nightwing was seriously bloodlusted at this point, so he’s hitting a lot harder than he would in a battle against Winter Soldier. And more importantly, my second point was that Dick doesn’t appear to have ‘busted up’ Blockbuster at all. Blockbuster seems to be rolling with the punches more than taking any serious damage, as his speech is entirely unaffected, and he’s not retaliating. The reason why this is important is because your argument makes it sound like Nightwing is doing serious damage to a mid-tier villain (because you used the Steel feat), when it doesn’t appear that way.

The comparison to Steel makes it even worse. Even in the scans you posted, a punch from Steel already sent Blockbuster flying into the air and slamming against a wall, cracking said wall. And Blockbuster was still conscious, entirely undamaged, and wasn’t even bleeding. Even if this was an ‘older armor’ of Steel’s, would Nightwing be able to replicate the same striking power? And it still doesn’t change the fact that Blockbuster was capable of hanging with William Payton:

No Caption Provided

A quick check identifies this fight as being from Starman #9 (1989), confirming that this Blockbuster is Roland Desmond, and not Mark Desmond (the first Blockbuster). A summary of Starman estimates his strength level to be around Aquaman’s, and in the scan, we see him punching Blockbuster into the air. This is a pretty obscure issue, but from what I gather in this blog, the fight didn’t end so well for Payton.

Basically, to suggest that Nightwing ‘busted up’ Blockbuster is actually quite far-fetched. But…there is an explanation. Now, returning back to what I mentioned earlier about Devin Grayson’s run having some problems, a little research reveals that his portrayal of Blockbuster was immensely downgraded compared to past portrayals.

This might seem a little unorthodox, but seeing as how it comes from this site’s preeminent street-level expert, I’m electing to use a Viner post as credible evidence. In a Nightwing versus thread, K4tzm4n takes note of how Devin Grayson toned down Blockbuster’s strength level. Here’s what he had to say about it:

No Caption Provided

To quote, in Dixon’s run, Nightwing admitted that one strike from Blockbuster could possibly take him down. In Grayson’s run, Nightwing walked away from a beating (the scans you posted at the end of your reply)! And if you’re still unsatisfied, here are actual scans from Nightwing’s first encounter with Blockbuster from Dixon’s run:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7

In it, Nightwing states that it’s taking all his speed to avoid Blockbuster. And while he does cause a nosebleed by slamming Blockbuster’s face against the floor, he still notes that his first kick ‘surprised’ Blockbuster as opposed to causing damage. The fight doesn’t end too well for Dick either, as even though he had prep time with the taser, it’s not enough – and it concludes with Nightwing summarily whooped.

In fairness, Nightwing does trump Blockbuster in their second encounter through specialized equipment and circumstances, but apparently even then, Nightwing was scared doing it.

To summarize this somewhat lengthy rebuttal – the entire feat essentially boils down to Nightwing doing mild damage to a low-tier superhuman. Devin Grayson’s Blockbuster was drastically depowered, so making the comparisons to Steel in order to make the feat seem more notable is inaccurate. It’s still a decent showing, but once again, when you put it into context…it’s less impressive than what you originally intended. Dick Grayson is bloodlusted, Blockbuster’s power levels are toned down, and he’s not even fazed.

With that out of the way, let’s move on to the newer striking feats you’ve posted. The ice feat is fine, but I do have some points regarding the Barry Pierce scans. In the first one, can you confirm that Pierce was KOed? Because there’s no mention of it in the Nightwing Capability blog – which plainly states that Dick kicked him into a wall.

And in the second Barry Pierce scan, note that it states he’s too ‘weak to even think’, and Pierce only gains invulnerability through concentration. Which is how Nightwing is able to KO him. And Pierce doesn’t even seem that large, he looks to be about the same size as Viper, whom Bucky was able to KO with a single kick:

No Caption Provided

Regarding KGBeast, you’ll note that I did say it was a good feat (even though KGBeast has turned into a serious jobber since his original appearance…beaten by Bats twice, Huntress gave him a hard time, beaten by Tim Drake in Troika, and then Harvey Dent pushed him off a roof, killing him…). But this isn’t merely a comparison of one feat alone, as Bucky has other strength showings that far trump this, which I’ll get to in a minute.

As for the Man-Bat scan, I know that you did state it was only to show Dick restraining it, not KOing it. But I wanted to point that out so readers wouldn’t get the wrong idea. As for the killer whale scan, you said he was ‘wrestling it’ in your original post. I suppose I can sort of buy Dick preventing the orca from chomping him, but it looks like he’s only done it for a moment before simply clinging onto the upper lip.

Now before we move on to speed, I want to drop one more Winter Soldier feat to definitively prove that he has displayed greater base-level striking power than Nightwing. I’ve already shown Bucky being able to one-shot the large Viper, and being able to KO the bulletproof Nuke with a couple of hits. Personally, these two feats alone seem better than Nightwing’s striking power showings. It’s one thing to hurt or restrain an opponent; it’s another entirely to take them out.

But if those still don’t convince you of Bucky’s base strength advantage over Nightwing, I guess it’s time to pull out the big guns. In this next set of scans, Bucky is thrown into a Russian gulag, and forced to compete in gladiatorial fights-to-the-death to survive.

His first opponent is the superhuman werebear Ursa Major. Let’s see how Bucky does:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2
No Caption Provided

*Note: The first four disparate scans are from the first issue, which tell the fight in incremental flashbacks and end on a cliffhanger. The fight is then resumed and ended at the start of the next issue.

Now what makes this feat so impressive? Three points. The first is that this is Ursa Major, a mutant who turns into a giant bear capable of lifting 1-15 tons (sources vary). He’s a monster with superhuman strength and durability, and an opponent above Bucky’s weight class. The narration even notes that no one in the prison fights with Ursa has even lasted two minutes with the bear.

The second is that Bucky was in a weakened state in this fight. His bionic arm has been depowered to normal human strength. He has been in this prison for about two months, being attacked daily by other prisoners and subject to physical exhaustion and hunger. So Bucky is hardly fighting at his peak here.

The third is that this is clearly an extended fight between Bucky and Ursa Major. Between the first issue and the second, the fight has been going on for a while. Bucky even tanks blows from the bear and takes serious damage, so this isn’t some skirmish where Buck is dodging and cracking jokes. This is an honest-to-God fight to the death.

And yet, despite all that, Bucky still succeeds in getting a few hits in and surviving. And the coup de grace is when he grabs onto Ursa’s chain, choking the bear and using it as momentum in order to swing into position, and KO the animal with a kick. Now in fairness, Ursa Major probably isn’t at the peak of his strength due to being imprisoned in the gulag, but he’s still a good deal stronger than Bucky.

And the fact remains that Winter Soldier’s kick was able to knock the werebear out cold, making this the third feat I’ve shown of Bucky’s base strength being able to coldcock an enemy. He uses strength and fighting skills alone, there's no environment to take advantage of, and nowhere to run off to. The narration even states “Any other opponent would not be getting up again…ever.” Implying that that kick would’ve killed a normal human.

Once again, this is before we even factor in the superhuman strength that Bucky’s bionic arm grants him. Based on the strength feats you’ve shown thus far, I still maintain that Winter Soldier holds an undeniable strength advantage over Nightwing, be it just base-level or including the bionic arm.

Let’s move on to speed now. Those are two solid feats on Dick’s part; I don’t have much to add there. I’ll give you the Red Hood one as well, but he was in his Nightwing costume in the Scorpiana fight, and his KO by Gordon was in the final arc of Morrison’s B&R run, so he’s long since adjusted to the cape by then.

Regarding the Punisher scan, you’ve failed to mention that Bucky was still able to break Punisher’s elbow in one move (with his normal arm, no less!), flip him over his shoulder using his normal arm. Then tackle him, and had his bionic arm on Punisher’s neck just as Castle had the gun out. A stalemate, essentially. I wouldn’t really call it a low showing on Buck’s part, particularly since Frank is a former Marine, seasoned vigilante with many feats, and took him by surprise.

I think Punisher even admits in this issue that he would lose in a straight-up fight against Bucky. If anything, this scan does more for my argument than yours ;)

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

But regarding ‘low showings’, it’s alright man, you can be blunt. I have a lot of respect for you as a debater. But I want to clear the air regarding the scans I posted, because it was not an attempt to compare crappy feats. Nor was it an attempt to show ‘Look how many times Dick has been defeated and KOed!’ If you’ll note, at the end of those scans, I said that I wasn’t looking to lowball Nightwing at all. I wasn’t trying to discredit Dick, and I even said that he was a fast fighter, plus conceded that he has a slight speed edge on Bucky.

The only reason why I brought them up was to show that Nightwing has been tagged before. A big part of your argument focuses on Dick’s speed advantage, and I just wanted to clarify that Dick isn't untouchable. The reason why I chose those specific scans was that a) two came from Dick’s own title (meaning he wasn’t jobbing as a guest in someone else’s book), and b) they were all written by Morrison, who aside from being a credible writer (hardly shoddy writing) has a lot of love and respect for Nightwing.

Moving on to the Batman fight, your counter still does not prove that Dick is faster than Batman. Your original argument had two unverified claims and one questionable scan suggesting that Nightwing was faster by a hair. When in their fight, Dick struggled to even keep up with Bruce.

You could argue that Bruce knows Dick better than anyone else and can anticipate his moves, but the same could be said vice-versa as well. Your rebuttal also neglects to mention the fact that Dick was motivated to fight Batman, whereas Batman probably isn’t moving at his max speed and has no intention of fighting Nightwing. He knows Dick isn’t going to seriously hurt him, he’s just evading with ease. And yes, Dick does grab Batman’s cape, but note how Tim Drake says Dick can’t even land a punch. One cape grab in freefall doesn’t make up for Bruce dodging every single fist and downright embarrassing Nightwing.

Plus, the argument for Dick improving is shaky, because he was already a fully-fledged hero in his prime by the time of the fight. He’s not even wearing the first two Nightwing outfits of his Titan days, he’s wearing his newest costume, and in real-life – he’s already been wearing this third uniform for eightyears at this point ('95-'02).

And the comparison to the Bat-Clone is not an equitable one – the clone was nowhere on the same level as Bruce’s speed. It might’ve been a perfect physical copy, but that doesn’t mean it was fighting at the same speed as Batman. The clone’s mind was damaged with broken memories, so it’s not like this is the same as Bruce being fully-focused in a fight and reacting at peak speeds. It couldn’t even remember all its moves, as Dick describes the clone’s fighting style as akin to a good song in the hands of a really bad singer (I dug out the actual issue).

Your entire line of logic comes across as: Dick is possibly faster than Batman because he once fought a damaged Bat-Clone that was insane, had fractured memories, and was nowhere near the level of the real Batman’s reaction time or fighting skill.

Also, do you have confirmation that the Lazarus Pit ‘physical amps users for a short time’? Because as far as I know, all it does is resurrect the dead and de-age. I actually own the entire Morrison B&R run – and in that story arc itself, Nightwing puts a critically-injured Batwoman into the Pit. And she comes out…entirely normal. I have never heard this claim before.

Ah and there we go. No Nightwing argument is complete without a Deathstroke feat. It’s a good showing no doubt, and Dick does dodge the first few rounds. But DS doesn’t seem to be shooting to the fullest here; he just seems to be spamming. And if he was really trying, based on the feats you posted, would Slade honestly have any problem tagging one officer (2nd page, 3rd panel, the other officer is just running)? Plus, why would DS leave without fulfilling his contract, if his only opposition were two normal cops (since he doesn’t know Nightwing is one)?

Me thinks storytelling reasons are afoot. Still, Dick does save his fellow cop from the first salvo, so I’ll give you that. Also, sorry for being nit-picky, but the paperclip feat is from the New 52 :P.

But to close off the speed part of this section, I still maintain that the gap between them is not wide enough to be a serious problem. Nightwing is an incredibly agile combatant, and it’s not like all of Bucky’s shots will be perfect hits. But between Bucky’s own reaction time mixed with his marksmanship skills, Dick is going to be pushed to the max in order to keep dodging the rounds. And Winter Soldier has a very good chance of getting a hit in, and is able to keep up speed-wise too.

Fighting Skills

The inevitable Deathstroke encounters! Let's have a look. Now in the first set, I believe Deathstroke is depowered there, which is why he puts up such a crappy fight. I’ve never read the issue, but that’s what everyone says when those scans are put up, and it makes sense because Deathstroke is wearing the blue-black outfit of his ‘depowered phase’.

As for the other two fights, they are good showings, but they’re also inconclusive and very circumstantial to an extent. Both fights never actually end – Dick evades and gets a few good hits in, but doesn’t decisively win. The second set has Ravager interrupting and distracting. And in the third set, Dick is fighting dirty and bloodlusted as a result of Slade…you know, dropping Chemo on Bludhaven and killing 100,000 people, plus mind-controlling Damian. One also has to note that Dick’s been fighting Slade since he was a teen, so it’s an enemy he knows very well, unlike Bucky.

All that being said, Dick does show impressive agility and fighting skill, so they're still solid feats. But let's segue over to some of Winter Soldier's own fights.

Now I’ve already displayed Winter Soldier taking down Nuke, Wolverine, Crossbones & Sin, Viper, and even Ursa Major, but let’s take a look at a few more good showings by Bucky. Here’s a fight with Black Widow where he summarily thrashes her:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5

Let’s bear in mind that Widow has the Russian version of the Super-Soldier Serum in her veins. She has peak stats making her an excellent acrobat capable of bullet-timing (ala Nightwing), has deaccelerated aging which gives her over five decades of combat experience, and even heals 4x faster than ordinary humans.

Yet Bucky is still capable of defeating her with ease, KOing her with a straight bionic fist to the face. Now yes, Bucky helped train Widow back in the Cold War, but bear in mind that this is their first encounter in over five decades, so it’s been awhile. Not to mention that Buck is holding back here, because he still remembers their earlier relationship, which is why he intentionally misses in the lethal attacks (e.g. shooting at her). This is a strongly morals-on Bucky. Widow even later tells Tony Stark that she wasn’t holding back or intentionally losing.

Another great fight for Winter Soldier is when he takes on 50s Captain America for the second time. Now this encounter starts off with Bucky punching 50s Cap in the face with his bionic arm, dropping him to his knees and drawing blood.

Bad. Ass.
Bad. Ass.
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9
No Caption Provided

Note: Bucky's wearing his old costume because...well, 50s Cap is nuts and wanted him to be his new sidekick

To break down the fight, after the first punch, Buck intentionally rolls with a hit from 50s Cap in order to maneuver to a better position. Remember, 50s Cap is 2x stronger than Steve. Bucky then proceeds to grab a rifle and shoot a bunch of henchmen, before taking Bad Cap on in HTH.

Now 50s Cap has been described as being 2x faster than Steve as well, yet Bucky easily evades two attacks, and even successfully catches a shield throw using his bionic arm! Very impressive, considering regular Cap can throw the shield with enough force to chop off a tank turret. Buck then throws it to disable the scientist working on the bomb, and then tanks a few blows from 50s Cap, even getting a surprise kick and one good bionic hit in that draws more blood.

The fight comes to a close when Bucky grabs a rifle and shoots Bad Cap before he can set off the vibranium bomb. Overall, a fantastic display of Winter Soldier’s fighting prowess, and yet another showing of him taking down an opponent well above his tier.

Now to be entirely fair, 50s Cap wasn’t exactly in a right frame of mind here. But he’s also bloodlusted and enraged, which means he’s hitting and fighting harder than he normally would. Another thing to factor in is that Bucky was still holding back somewhat throughout the entire fight, until the last moment when he knew he had no choice. This is evident in Bucky’s internal monologue, plus he constantly tries to reason with 50s Cap throughout the fight.

To close off this section, let me just post up one of my favorite Bucky fights - where he goes up against Extremis Iron Man. Now to be entirely fair, Bucky does end up stalemating Tony, and Tony is seriously holding back here. If this were an actual fight, Iron Man would have shut Winter Soldier down in ten seconds tops.

But what makes this fight so impressive is that even though Stark doesn't want to fight, he still expresses surprise that Bucky found ways to hurt him. And it's no slight on Barnes, because Extremis Iron Man is leagues above his power level. We're talking someone who tanked nukes (thrice), reacts at microsecond speeds, and can tangle with Sentry-tier characters. The fact that Winter Soldier did this well is a testament to his fighting skills.

No Caption Provided
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5
No Caption Provided

And Winter Soldier just displays fantastic fighting prowess throughout the entire encounter. A bionic arm punch sends Tony to his feet. Iron Man's supercomputer systems inform him of Winter Soldier's capabilities though, shielding him from the EMP blast, and he fires a repulsor burst at Bucky. Bucky's impact-resistant suit protects him however.

Then Bucky's bionic arm punches are still able to lift Tony off his feet, and he then shoots the wall behind Iron Man, exposing the open wires. Winter Soldier then dodges a repulsor blast before charging at Tony, and with his bionic arm, pushes Tony against the wires - overloading the suit's energy.

Winter Soldier then leaps at Iron Man, dodging one repulsor blast before ripping off his mask, then evades a second repulsor blast...then kicks Tony at the knees, sending him onto his butt. Bucky then ends the fight by pointing a gun at Iron Man's face.

Now yes, in the next page, Tony has two repulsors at Bucky's face and the fight ends in a mutual surrender. But throughout the entire encounter, Winter Soldier shows a great deal of skill - using strategy and tactics to overcome the odds, and displaying impressive reflexes and strength as well. Iron Man even initially tells Buck that there's no way he can be hurt, and Stark is so confident that he barely even retaliates, and still he expresses surprise at multiple points. Bucky is still able to find a way to turn the tables throughout the fight.

Gear

As I’ve already established above, Bucky holds an undeniable strength advantage over Dick (be it base strength or his bionic arm), and while Dick does have a minor edge in speed, the gap isn’t a serious issue. But now it’s time to bring in another factor which might just turn the tables – Winter Soldier’s gear!

And the first piece of ordnance I want to cover is the assault rifle that Bucky will be carrying. It’s a M16, nothing too fancy, but in the hands of the Winter Soldier it’ll be deadly. I’ve already addressed Buck’s reaction time and aim, and shown many instances where Nightwing’s been tagged. So while Dick does make a career out of dodging bullets, he’ll need a lot of effort to evade someone with this degree of accuracy.

And Winter Soldier has shown great proficiency in his aim. His timing is impeccable, and he knows how fast bullets will hit and judge their impact points. I’ve already posted the scan where Bucky times his shield-throw so perfectly that it protects a Senator from a sniper round. And the bullet hit the shield straight in its center, showcasing Buck’s timing.

And his timing is proven in the instances where Bucky sets his shot perfectly to prevent the enemy from doing something. Let's return back to the fight with Bad Cap, where Bucky successfully shoots 50s Captain America three times before Bad Cap can flick the switch to a vibranium bomb:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

Then in these next two scans, Madame Masque is holding a girl hostage, but Buck’s perfect shot knocks her aside, KOing her and saving the girl. Again, great timing and aim:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Both showings had Buck succeeding in timing his shot just right – to prevent the enemy from making a single move that would’ve ended everything. You’ll note that I’ve even specifically chosen scans where Bucky uses an assault rifle to further cement my point.

Yet while Winter Soldier does have incredible aim, to suggest that he’ll hit Nightwing every time would be a silly argument. Nightwing is an incredibly agile acrobat, so he won’t be tagged easily. But Bucky could just use the rifle as suppressive fire, either to limit Nightwing’s mobility, or to keep him on-his-toes long enough for Buck to get a good shot.

And before one makes the suggestion that Nightwing can find cover behind the cars on the battlefield, modern cars are made of light steel or aluminum. Despite what Hollywood tells us, cars offer lousy protection from bullets. I’d refer you to this link, where a gentleman used a durable Buick as a test subject, and assault rifle rounds were able to punch through both doors.

And before anyone yells that Nightwing’s suit is bulletproof, let me mention that it’s just bullet-resistant. In the following two scans, Dick gets shot at close-range with a tiny revolver. The shot doesn't penetrate the suit, but it causes him to collapse in pain, and unable to catch the woman who shot him:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Now…aside from the fact that this scan proves Nightwing doesn’t make dodging point-blank shots a habit (no cape slowing him down here)…it also shows that his suit doesn’t completely absorb the shock. If a low-caliber revolver already stuns him so badly that he’s on the ground in pain for a while, imagine what an assault rifle can do.

I'm arguing that a round from Buck’s rifle might punch through Nightwing like a hot knife through butter. His suit likely won’t stop it, and all Winter Soldier needs is one good hit to cripple or injure Dick.

And while we’re discussing firearms, I might as well mention a related advantage that Buck has: a higher rate of fire. Dick has his Eskrima sticks and Wing-Dings, sure. But they travel a lot slower than bullets, and it’s not as though it’s in-character for Nightwing to spam Wing-Dings. With his guns, Bucky has a faster and longer-sustained rate of fire at his disposal.

But it’s not just in ranged combat that Winter Soldier’s gear comes into play. Remember that pesky bionic arm – the one with super-strength and durability? Well Buck’s arm happens to also come with a secret weapon, an electrical shock!

No Caption Provided
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

As shown in the first scan above, the electrical charge was able to temporarily incapacitate The Man With No Face – a Chinese Super-Soldier that took down Namor. And against normal humans, it was able to cause instant KOs to a SHIELD scientist and an armored Cape-Killer.

Now the first advantage that this electric charge grants to Bucky is the element of surprise. Even if Dick were able to discern that the arm’s bionic, he would still be unaware of its capabilities. Let’s say Dick catches a punch or tries to grab Bucky’s arm – ZAP! One touch is all Buck needs to trigger a powerful charge that will shock Nightwing. It’s an attack that Dick won’t see coming until too late.

Then there’s also the fact that Nightwing’s costume isn’t entirely insulated against electricity. Now I’m aware that his suit has a one-time built-in taser charge, but I think that it also has a limited voltage threshold. Because, as you yourself posted, in one of Dick’s mostrecent pre-52 appearances…he gets shocked by Jason Todd’s trap:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

In Battle of the Cowl, Jason Todd’s electrical trap was able to shock Dick so badly that he collapsed onto the ground, and Todd could have killed him right there and then. Now it’s likely a matter of volts, but considering the arm’s charge can KO an armored grunt, it should hurt Nightwing real bad. Long enough for Bucky to press the advantage and win.

And let’s not forget – unlike Nightwing’s taser charge, the bionic arm’s electrical charge has repeated uses. Bucky doesn’t need the shock to KO Nightwing – he could either capitalize on a stunned Dick, or follow up with multiple shocks.

Now I have more to follow regarding Winter Soldier’s equipment, but I think that’ll suffice for now.

Morals

A final point that you brought up, that I want to address, is morals. Whereas Nightwing refuses to kill and all of his moves are designed to incapacitate, Winter Soldier is a very different beast all together. He’s not afraid to do lasting or permanent damage, or even resort to lethal force, in order to win a battle.

Now Bucky’s not some heartless murderer who’s going to start every fight with killing blows. That is true. But if the opportunity presents itself for him to end the battle preemptively, he’ll take it. If this were an actual comic, the two would probably realize they’re both heroes. But a CaV implies that both combatants already have the motive to fight, so Dick being a good guy as well won’t save him. If it means Bucky using a bionic arm punch to KO Dick, or critically injuring him with bullets - I can see him doing both.

You are right in saying that Winter Soldier probably won’t be hitting Nightwing at ‘robot-punching’ levels with his bionic arm. But at the same time, he won’t be afraid to cause broken bones or internal bleeding with his hits. Winter Soldier is a lot more ruthless than Dick, and someone of Bucky’s caliber being willing to maim (and sometimes even kill) is an advantage in such a closely-matched fight as this.

Avatar image for comicstooge
#28 Posted by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark: I'll reply when I have time. Sorry if I came off a little too blunt before, that wasn't my intention. It's hard to convey tone through text.

Avatar image for veshark
#29 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark: I'll reply when I have time. Sorry if I came off a little too blunt before, that wasn't my intention. It's hard to convey tone through text.

Oh no man being blunt is perfectly alright, it's fine. I took no offense at all, and it's a fair point to raise, which I've hopefully justified with my response. I look forward to your reply!

Avatar image for comicstooge
#30 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark said:

@comicstooge said:

@veshark: I'll reply when I have time. Sorry if I came off a little too blunt before, that wasn't my intention. It's hard to convey tone through text.

Oh no man being blunt is perfectly alright, it's fine. I took no offense at all, and it's a fair point to raise, which I've hopefully justified with my response. I look forward to your reply!

I'll try not to disappoint you, bro. :)

Avatar image for lvenger
#31 Edited by Lvenger (36181 posts) - - Show Bio

Wow, the level of debating here is ramped up to a whole other level. Both you guys are doing an awesome job and voting is gonna be really difficult in this thread.

Avatar image for dondave
#32 Posted by dondave (41748 posts) - - Show Bio

@lvenger said:

Wow, the level of debating here is ramped up to a whole other level. Both you guys are doing an awesome job and voting is gonna be really difficult in this thread.

Avatar image for comicstooge
#33 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

Alright, here we go.

You've pretty much covered the Blockbuster feat pretty well. I don't have much to respond to you with.

The main thing I wanted to get across with the Barry Peirce feat was the whole "through a brick wall" part:

No Caption Provided

That's what makes the feat so impressive.

Still, with what you've shown, I think you've proved that Bucky does have greater raw physical strength then Dick, even if base striking power does still seem debatable.

Speedwise, addressing the Bat-Clone feat, the Pit does indeed amp up the users physicals:

No Caption Provided

He states that the pit has revitalized him and given him the strength of 10 men. I don't see how the pit could simply amp up strength and not all of someone's stats, but even if we're to work off the assumption that it only amps strength.

Still, Dick doesn't need to be directly compared to Batman to prove his speed is greater then Winter Soldiers (which, it is). If you'd like another impressive speed feat from Dick, while doubling as a evidence of his insulated armor, here you go:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

He straight up dodges the Electrocutioners electric-discharge!

And his other impressive feats of speed, which I've already posted here include the likes of: moving faster then Nemesis could see, reacting fast enough to use Firefly as a shield from bullets after they'd already been fired, dodging laserbeams during the skirmish between Henshaw and one of Lex's Doomsday clones, reacting fast enough to save his partner from Deathstroke's gunfire, avoiding Deathstroke's attacks on more than one occasioning etc.

I think the gap between Dick and Barnes in speed is more then slight, I think it's one of Grayson's chief advantages in this fight.

I'd also like to bring up some scans you used earlier of Winter Soldier outmaneuvering Wolverine:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

This tactic of lying in wait in the dark won't be effective against Grayson. One of the reasons being that unlike Wolverine, Dick has thermal and nightvision optics in his mask:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

And for the most part, Wolverine isn't the most tactical or intelligent combatants. :P

Onto the Iron Man feat, while it is impressive, you don't think the writing's a little shoddy?

I mean, Iron Man has a magnet in his armor, so he could've easily disarmed Bucky without laying a hand on him. Not to mention his millisecond reaction time, which makes it weird that Bucky could maneuver around him so easily regardless if Tony wanted to fight him or not.

And the fact that Bucky could knock Stark over by kicking him in the back of the leg doesn't make sense, Bucky would probably break his toes attempting it.

Seems to me like Tony had to forget his own capabilities for Bucky to stalemate him like that.

Onto the whole 'real cars not being bulletproof', I think that's a bit of a strange argument to use, when debating with fictional characters. Real people don't have super advanced bionic arms with EMPs in them, nor can they dodge bullets or lasers or do any perform any of the crazy feats they do.

If we're debating fictional character vs fiction character, shouldn't we debate it in the confines of the fictional realm?

Onto that Nightwing feat, you mentioned a comment about Dick 'not dodging the bullet at close range'?

No Caption Provided

The scan pretty much debunks itself, Dick was distracted and taken totally by surprise, which is something that won't happen in his fight against Barnes, as he'll be focused.

But you are right in saying that Dick's costume isn't totally bulletproof. Still, even against something like an assault rifle it should lessen the impact and allow him to fight through the pain and keep going.

He's fought through the pain of being shot in the back of the head by a .38 calibre bullet, which, while it didn't penetrate his skull, it did fracture his skull and the bleeding would have led to a brain damage:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5

And there was a impressive display of endurance for him in The Great Leap were he was shot with a sniper multiple times while protecting a former lover of Harvey Dent's, still managed to saved her while bleeding profusely, then flew on his glider to the Batcave, despite being shot multiple times with bullets laced with Scarecrow's fear toxin. I'll attempt to locate those scans.

OK, now to address gear...

Nightwing carries a rather impressive arsenal.

These include standard Wingdings. which are basically like batarangs:

No Caption Provided

Explosive grenades:

No Caption Provided

Net grenades:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

Colourless knock-out gas grenades :

No Caption Provided

Foam grenades:

No Caption Provided

Gas grenades:

No Caption Provided

And sonic grenades and flashbangs:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

These ultrasonics would be perfect in dealing with Bucky's sonar he has in his mask.

Outside of projectiles Dick also has a sticky bomb explosive:

No Caption Provided

And Nightwing's thermo-charge can damage one of Superman's robots:

No Caption Provided

Should Dick plan one on Bucky's arm and detonate it (the explosion was relatively small scale, it wouldn't kill him) it could potentially disable his arm.

And I'd like to remind you Dick as no issue with destroying prosthetic limbs:

No Caption Provided

Now onto the point about Bucky's EMP:

That scan of Nightwing being hurt by the Batcowl's taser isn't really a low showing, given the fact that cowl has a charge of approximately 200 thousand volts (according to this source)

And yes, Nightwing's suit does indeed have a one-off taser charge in it:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

But Nightwing also has other tasers in his suit:

No Caption Provided

He could potentially taser Bucky in the face , given that it's a focused projectile and not an area of effect attack like Bucky's arm taser.

I know how silly that sounds, but Dick, as Batman, did it:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

For the record, Dick's also possesses a powerful EMP as standard gear, which was capable of shutting down highly advanced OMAC technology and taking out a room of opponents:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

Onto a factor I feel the need to mention:

Stealth.

Batman taught Dick to be extremely proficient in the art of stealth:

No Caption Provided

He's snuck up on Jesse Quick, then later used Batman's famous disappearing trick.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

He even proved difficult for her to find:

No Caption Provided

Dick's snuck into Checkmate's base undetected:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

And he's even pulled a Batman on the man himself!

No Caption Provided

While it is true Barnes does have that sonar vision, a sonic grenade would counteract this. Given Dick's brilliant tactical mind and deductive ability, he could easily employ this, in the event he finds it difficult to stealth Bucky.

Dick can end the fight using a well placed knock-out gas grenade (perhaps by rolling it under a car or the like). Dick's suit can protect him from Bucky's EMP long enough for Dick to use a smoke grenade to get away, or alternately use a foam grenade and throw it at Bucky to distract/suffocate him. Grayson's gear, despite being nonlethal, grants him more variety.

To address your point about morals, Dick isn't above maiming his opponents either. He did pretty brutal move against Raptor after all, and was worried he could've killed the guy:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

@veshark your turn, man. You wanna do one or two more replies to finish this off?

Avatar image for veshark
#34 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

Gahhh...I'm supposed to be studying for finals...curse you @comicstooge!!!

Winter Soldier
Winter Soldier

Physicals

In regards to Barry Pierce, it is a good striking power showing, but I thought it worth noting that his invulnerability was moot in the second scan, as you mentioned he was a metahuman. Regardless, it is a nice strength feat on Dick’s part, I’ll grant you.

Moving on to the Bat-Clone feat, that’s a good scan – I was never aware that the Pit also amps strength. But even so, all Ra’s states is that the Pit gives a strength boost, not one of speed. The Pit could easily have boosted an individual’s muscles, but not necessarily improved the mind’s reaction time. Furthermore, the other points that I raised earlier are still valid. This Bat-Clone has damaged memories and was confused, meaning he was not fighting at the same reflex speed of a focused Batman, and he couldn’t even remember the real Batman’s moves.

In short, this fight is hardly a clear indication that Nightwing is any faster than Batman. The encounter between Dick and Bruce in Batman #600 only serves to cement my point that Dick is most-definitely not quicker than Bats.

Once again, I just want to reiterate that I do concede to Nightwing having a slight speed/agility advantage over Winter Soldier. That much is true. And you are correct in saying that Dick doesn’t need to be faster than Bruce to be faster than Buck. But you were the one who originally argued that Dick was quicker than Batman, which I felt was an inaccurate point to illustrate Nightwing’s speed, and that I’ve hopefully debunked above.

As for the Electrocutioner feat…I don’t know. Is that B-list villain really that notable in terms of combat speed or even damage output? The scans you’ve shown of Nightwing dodging bullets are a lot more impressive than one panel of Dick evading an electric burst, so I don’t see how this scan is any more noteworthy. It’s decent, sure, but I don’t think it adds much.

And I still maintain that Nightwing’s speed and agility advantage – while evident – isn’t a huge factor in this fight. It’s not as though Dick is that much faster than Bucky’s; he won’t be blitzing Winter Soldier or effortlessly avoiding all of Buck’s attacks. Nightwing is fast, as your feats depict, but as I’ve shown as well – he’s not untouchable.

To add: consider Winter Soldier’s own reflex feats. With the exception of Deathstroke, all those feats for Dick you listed were against cannon fodder or minor characters. Bucky has reacted to the likes of Wolverine, Hawkeye, Nick Fury, Black Widow, and Daredevil – all major Marvel players with plenty of feats to attest to their combat speeds. Dick being able to keep up with Slade isn't any different than Bucky being able to dodge and keep up with 50s Cap while holding back (2x Steve's speed, remember).

While we're here, let me just drop a cool set of scans, and one of my favorite Bucky showings. They're not too remarkable as he just goes up against Watchdogs (thugs with high-tech armor, rocket packs, and heat-seeking missiles), but it's still a badass feat for Bucky's physicals:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8
  1. In this first scan, Bucky is able to use his agility to jump over a collapsing building
  2. Next, he dodges one heat-seeking missile, and balances himself upside-down on a wire
  3. Then he uses the wire as a swing, avoiding several more missiles
  4. While he leaps and avoids two more missiles, he’s talking to Hawkeye on his comm
  5. He pushes aside a innocent mother and child from yet another missile
  6. He takes down two flying Watchdogs in one shield throw
  7. Dodges another missile, and tags the last Watchdog in the gut, making him crash
  8. And then cold-cocks the last Watchdog, ending the fight

I don’t really have much to add in the Physicals department, so I guess I’ll just close off with this. As you yourself concede to, Winter Soldier has displayed a higher level of strength than Nightwing. With raw physical power alone, he has defeated the werebear Ursa Major and the bulletproof Nuke. And that’s before we even factor in the bionic arm, which more or less establishes Bucky’s superiority in this category. As for speed, I’ve already covered that extensively above – a slight edge to Dick, sure, but not enough to warrant a serious threat in combat.

Fighting Skills

Onto the instance of Bucky taking down Wolverine: I didn’t really bring it up to show a definitive tactic for Winter Soldier beating Nightwing. It was really more of a feat for Bucky’s tactical mindset. And for all Dick’s thermals or night-vision, don’t forget that Logan also has night-vision and has enhanced senses too. As for Wolverine not being the most tactical or intelligent of combatants, I’m just gonna sic @wolverine08 on you ;D

Moving on to the Iron Man instance, I don’t think it was shoddy writing at all. One has to consider the context and scenario, which I first addressed when I posted that fight. As I said earlier, if Tony honestly wanted to fight, he would have shut Bucky down in seconds. But Iron Man didn’t want to hurt Bucky at all, he was constantly trying to talk him down, and even when Tony has his repulsors aimed at Winter Soldier’s face…he still lowers them (while Buck has him at gunpoint), to prove that he can be trusted:

No Caption Provided

Earlier on, Iron Man also read a letter that was left for him by Steve – where Cap told Tony to look after Bucky and make sure nothing happens to him. If your recently-deceased close friend whom you’ve survived countless battles with, and was indirectly killed because of you…entrusted you with the safety of his protégé…would you harm him? Iron Man wasn’t fighting to the fullest to intentionally show Bucky that yeah, I can kill you in ten seconds flat, but I’m not going to, because I’m not your enemy.

As for why Iron Man didn’t use his magnets, to my knowledge, the Extremis armor doesn’t have any polar abilities. You may be confusing it with the similar-looking Model 29 armor, which showed magnetic abilities. I know Lvenger mistakenly used a scan of the Model 29 suit using magnets in his CaV debate with you. And as for Buck tripping IM, it just looks like he targeted the knee joint when Tony's center-of-balance was off. It's not as though he even cracked the armor, and considering Winter Soldier's kicks can put down Ursa Major, it's not much of a stretch.

Just to cap off fighting skills, I think I’ll just post one more showing for Bucky. Now, remember Ursa Major? That was just Bucky’s first fight in the Gulag. Let’s take a look at the second battle that Bucky fought there, against Boris Bullski…better known as the Titanium Man!

No Caption Provided
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3
No Caption Provided

The first point to note here is that once again, Bucky is hardly in the best of shape. But he’s even worse-off here than he was in the Ursa Major fight. Why? Well aside from being depowered and exhausted and constantly attacked by convicts…Buck had just fought Ursa thenight before! He’d just survived a long and hard fight with a killer werebear, and only got a couple of hours to heal from his injuries.

To add more to his wounds, right before this encounter with Titanium Man, Bucky had just been in another one of his periodic brawls with the prison gangs. And got sucker-punched in the back with a freakin’ sledgehammer:

No Caption Provided

The second point to note is that this is Titanium Man, a former Iron Man villain. Aside from being a seasoned HTH fighter (he was trained by Black Widow), Bullski also has a cyborg arm that was not depowered. And even without his armor, he’s still able to lift 1.5 tons, thanks to physical enhancements. As Bucky himself puts it, “This is the second opponent who’s way out of my weight class”.

Before the fight began, Bucky managed to grab a sneak preview of Titanium Man. And as the scans below will attest to, Titanium Man was killing multiple inmates without breaking a sweat, and easily able to lift grown men with one hand.

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

The third and final point that makes this feat so noteworthy – is that Titanium Man is extremely motivated to win here. Of course Bucky is fighting for his survival, but Bullski is fighting for his freedom. Titanium Man has been trapped in this gulag for years, and he knows that if he kills Buck, he will be released. So Titanium Man’s not playing around here, or underestimating Winter Soldier – he’s going all-out to win. Another prisoner describes Titanium Man looking at Buck like he’s ‘an old enemy’.

The harsh Siberian winter certainly isn’t helping the shirtless Bucky either, considering temperatures there can go down to -23 Celsius (-10 for you Americans :P).

When the fight starts, it’s obvious that Titanium Man’s physical advantage is too much for Bucky, who is already severely damaged before the battle begins. And Titanium Man just pummels Winter Soldier: kicking him twice, bashing his face with the cyborg arm, strangling him by the neck, and even grabbing Buck by the arm and slamming him against concrete. The base durability that Winter Soldier displays here is insane.

Bucky knows that he can’t take Titanium Man on in HTH, especially in his present weakened state. His normal arm is nearly out of its socket at this point. Yet despite taking the beating, Buck is still able to make a break for it to rethink his options. At which point, he realizes that the guards are throwing weapons into the ring and that the fight has no rules.

A single mace turns the tide, and Winter Soldier then proceeds to club the sh*t out of Titanium Man, winning the encounter!

Now of course, you can say that Bucky would’ve been screwed without the weapon. And you’d be right. But I don’t think it’s any slight on Buck’s capabilities: considering his physical state, his opponent’s obvious advantages, and his lack of standard gear. Remember, the fight itself has no rules. So both sides could have used whatever means to win. And Titanium Man could just as easily have picked up the weapons too; he just never got the chance.

Meaning that Bucky, despite having taken serious physical damage (long fight with Ursa, hit with sledgehammer, starved, depowered arm, beating from Titanium Man, freezing winter), still had enough skill and grit to beat an opponent that heavily outclassed him…using a single weapon alone. Remember what I said about the best feats coming out when the hero’s at a severe disadvantage? Well there you go.

To cap this off, I’m just going to post the final fight Bucky had in the gulag, just for completion’s sake. Only one day after fighting Titanium Man, and after being subjected to drugs and torture, Bucky was then forced to face the dreaded Unicorn (no, that’s really his name).

No Caption Provided
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

Nothing much to add here, aside from a good display of Bucky’s combat skills and all the other stuff I’ve already mentioned (physical exhaustion et cetera). Buck dodges the laser (which can create giant craters and cut through concrete), and then hits Unicorn with a pair of manacles to direct the laser at the prison warden’s office. Note, Unicorn has some extent of superhuman strength and durability.

Bucky then lures the Unicorn and his laser, first escaping through a wall and then directing the blast towards the methane tanks. Which he knows are very old, and so they proceed to explode, blowing up the gulag and allowing him to make his escape.

Oh, and Winter Soldier knocks out Unicorn before he leaves.

Gear

I don’t think comparing the cars on the battlefield to real-life cars is a strange argument, to be perfectly honest. Of course we’re dealing with fictional characters here, and of course their feats and powers are beyond logic, but surely everything else is subject to some degree of reality? Do we say that the bullets in our feats travel any slower than real-life rounds? How is it any different than saying “In this feat, The Wrecker lifts an 18-wheeler, which is impressive because they weigh around 80,000 pounds in real-life”?

As for the scan of Nightwing getting shot, I don’t want to retread speed levels, so I’ll leave it at that. But again, I doubt Nightwing’s suit will buffer the shot all that well. A tiny revolver at close-range sent Dick reeling to the ground, and knocked the wind out of him. A high-caliber assault rifle – even if it doesn’t penetrate the suit – could very possibly break Dick’s bones and cause severe pain.

Regarding the feat of Dr. Hurt shooting Dick in the head, Hurt does state that it would take twelve hours for the shot to cause permanent neurological damage, so it can’t be that fast-acting. It was a shot that was intentional. And Dick only went on to fight a bunch of grunts with the aid of Bruce and Damian before seeking medical attention shortly after.

If Bucky lands an assault rifle round on Nightwing…even if it doesn’t penetrate the suit and Dick can endure…it still might give a small gap for Buck to capitalize on and win the fight. Once more, factor in Winter Soldier’s own accuracy and combat speed.

But aside from the rifle, let’s look at another long-range option that Winter Soldier has: his custom pistol. Buck’s handgun is a modified version of Nick Fury’s, and is an extremely potent firearm. The pistol’s own power mixed with Bucky’s marksmanship skills will be a major issue for Nightwing, as all Buck needs to do is score one good hit to deal some serious damage.

Winter Soldier’s handgun has had some pretty impressive showings, and these suggest two things. One: that the handgun fires at a higher velocity than standard pistols. Its bullets travel faster, meaning that they’ll hit harder too. And two: the rounds themselves are more powerful and durable than conventional bullets.

Let me post a few scans to prove my points. First up, let’s look at this one panel where Mockingbird picks up Bucky’s pistol and uses it. Here’s what she had to say regarding the gun:

No Caption Provided

Even as she’s firing it, Mockingbird can already tell that the weapon shoots and feels stronger than a standard pistol, commenting that it’s like a ‘souped-up Luger’. But this is just a statement, not definitive evidence, so let’s look at the pistol’s showings.

In these first two scans, Bucky shields himself from an axe thrown by Ares (reaction feat), and lands on the ground. He then plays dead until Ares comes over, at which point Bucky surprises him with three point-blank shots from his gun:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Three point-blank bullets to Ares’ chin sends the god of war into the water; stunning him long enough for Buck to make his escape! And when Ares comes to, he even comments, “Impressive”. So what can we infer from this showing?

If three bullets from Bucky’s pistol – fired at point-blank range – were powerful enough to temporarily stun the 70-tonner Ares, causing the Olympian god to collapse…it shows that the gun fires at an incredibly powerful velocity. And the fact that the bullets didn’t just rebound off Ares’ skin, but were able to daze him for a while, implies that they must be especially durable rounds too. Both the gun and its ammunition must be powerful to accomplish this feat.

So if three bullets at close range were able to put down a Greek God for a few seconds…imagine what a single bullet at medium-to-long range could do to peak-human Nightwing. Whatever Kevlar or Teflon Nightwing has on him will be useless, and if even one round connects, it could be game-over for Dick.

Let’s take a look at a second showing of the gun’s power. In this one, the Avengers are under attack from a future Apocalypse and his Four Horsemen. This Apocalypse’s Horsemen are all evil versions of Marvel heroes, including one Red Hulk one.

In the scan below, Wolverine is fighting the Rulk Horseman. Bucky – from a distance – fires a single round into the Horseman’s eye, blinding him and causing Rulk to howl in pain.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Aside from being a cool marksmanship feat, this scan also illustrates the power of both Bucky’s gun and its bullets. Now it would be a stretch to suggest that this featless Rulk Horseman has the same durability as regular Rulk. But seeing as how he’s essentially the same character from a different timeline, I think it’s fair to suggest that this Horseman probably has a degree of superhuman durability.

So Bucky’s shot being able to not only penetrate this Horseman’s eye, but also cause him intensepain and bleeding, serves as a good showing of the gun’s muzzle velocity, and its bullets’ constitution. It must’ve hurt the Rulk Horseman, considering how he screams and hurls Logan aside in the second page.

The handgun’s remarkable velocity means that its bullets will travel with rapid speed, making it all the more difficult for Nightwing to dodge Bucky’s shots. And the bullets’ power means that if even one round connects (and considering Buck’s marksmanship, that is a very likely possibility), Nightwing will be severely wounded. Bucky’s pistol has as much power as a high-caliber weapon, but can fire at the rate of a normal pistol! It packs all the punch, and all the speed, too.

And if that isn’t enough, Winter Soldier’s handgun also comes with specialized explosive ammunition:

No Caption Provided

Again, aside from being a good accuracy feat, the explosive round was able to blow an entire rifle apart. Something that looks like it would take a grenade to accomplish. With the explosive rounds, Winter Soldier can seemingly cause grenade-level damage but at the speed and firing rate of ordinary gunfire.

Onto Nightwing’s gear, that’s all very impressive, but there are several points I want to stress:

  1. Dick isn’t really a fighter dependent on gadgetry. He isn’t in the habit of spamming gadgets, relying more on agility and martial arts, so he won’t be using all of that, particularly in the heat of battle. I can definitely see him using some if the situation dictates it, but he certainly won’t be utilizing everything.
  2. Bucky is a bullet-timer who has shot both Hawkeye’s arrows and DD’s batons in midair, there’s no reason why he can’t shoot or avoid these projectiles. Particularly since they’re being thrown by hand, meaning that they’ll be travelling a lot slower than bullets, which Buck casually reacts to.
  3. And while Nightwing does have more variety, it still stands that Bucky’s gear is lethal. His rifle and pistol and even his grenades are all designed to cause near-fatal damage. With the exception of perhaps the knockout gas, none of Nightwing’s projectiles will put down Bucky permanently. And that’s even under the assumption that Bucky can’t avoid the attacks.
  4. It’s also worth reiterating that Bucky’s rifle and especially his pistol means that he’ll have a far higher and sustained rate of ranged attacks. Winter Soldier’s long-range attacks are faster, and do more serious damage too.

As for the thermo-charge: would Nightwing necessarily use it against Bucky? I don’t know about small-scale – he was using it against a high-tier Superman robot, and the yield looks pretty big to me. I mean the explosion was large enough to cover the robot’s entire back.

Moving on to Bucky’s electrical charge, it’s technically not an EMP, just a shock. Now two problems regarding your counterargument for Batman’s cowl. 1) The Batman Handbook is hardly a credible source. It’s not really a source book, but more of a semi-serious guide on ‘how to be Batman’. Unless you can provide an actual comic scan, I’m going to have to disagree. 2) Even if we consider the Batman Handbook as credible, note that the entry itself states that it’s a suit-taser activated by Batman’s gloves. When Nightwing was shocked, it wasn’t by Batman’s suit, it was from his cowl.

So I believe that one close-ranged shock should still be enough to slow Nightwing down. Remember, Bucky also has the advantage of surprise here, and it is wholly in-character for him to break it out in melee combat. As for Nightwing's taser, I doubt that they'll even slow Winter Soldier, considering the durability feats that Bucky has.

As for Nightwing’s EMP, sorry man, but I’m going to discount that device. The reason why I specifically asked that we each list out our characters’ loadout was because both Dick and Bucky use loads of gadgets – which can lead to arguments about what qualifies as ‘standard gear’. You didn’t list EMPs when you mentioned Nightwing’s gear, so I’m electing to ignore it. And even if Dick has an EMP...I doubt he’ll use it against Winter Soldier, as Buck isn’t a robotic enemy ala the OMACs. That’s even assuming that Nightwing is aware of the bionic arm.

To close off this section, I just want to look at one of Buck’s best gear advantages: his impact-resistance suit. Any physical or explosive damage that Winter Soldier takes from Nightwing can be partly absorbed by the suit. Dick’s attacks won’t be as effective in terms of damage, and the suit covers almost all of Bucky’s body.

I’ve already shown Bucky’s remarkable base durability in the Gulag fights, and this tough suit gives him yet another added layer of protection. Let me drop a few of the suit’s resistance feats, just to illustrate exactly how much damage it can take:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3
  1. In this first scan, Bucky tanks a hit from Dr. Doom himself. Doom’s strength varies, but generally falls in the 10-25 ton range. The blow is able to stun Buck, and it was likely the impact-resistance material saves him from death.
  2. Next, Bucky tanks a punch from Miklho, one of the Red Ghost’s Super-Apes. Miklho was able to brawl with Classic Thing, so his strength level is likely around the 5-10 ton range. Buck nearly blacks out from the hit, but again, it’s his suit that keeps him conscious in the fight.
  3. Lastly, here Bucky tanks a point-blank repulsor blast from Extremis Iron Man. Repulsors are defined as ‘force projection’, so they’re akin to concussive hits. Now Tony obviously wasn’t firing at full-power, but Stark has stated that repulsors can cause broken bones and internal organ damage. And given the close-range that Bucky was hit at, it’s quite notable that Buck could recover so quickly.

All three of these instances had Bucky being hit by attacks far stronger than what Nightwing can replicate. So that just goes to show how tough the impact-resistance suit is. Now of course I’m not saying that Buck is completely impervious to all damage from Nightwing. In all those instances I showed, Winter Soldier only survived one hit, and he likely couldn’t take multiple blows. But the fact that the suit could stand up to that strength level even once means that Dick’s going to have a harder time hurting him.

With this suit, any form of ‘impact damage’ that Nightwing hits Bucky with can be absorbed, and the damage minimized. Meaning that in addition to Winter Soldier’s own endurance, his suit also gives him an added level of durability that surpasses Nightwing’s.

I know that Dick’s suit also offers him some degree of protection, but I don’t think it poses too serious a problem for Winter Soldier. Remember that Dick was still able to be KOed by a Venomless Bane – who is far weaker than either Doom or Miklho. And it wasn’t even a direct punch, Bane just swung him against a wall. Bucky has powerful bullets, a bionic arm, and his base strength alone could KO the bulletproof Scourge – Dick’s suit won’t be much help. I don’t think Nightwing’s costume will protect Dick as much as the impact-resistant suit will protect Buck.

Stealth

Now yes, Nightwing is pretty stealthy. And in truth, Bucky is a master of concealment himself. I mean, we’re talking someone who had multiple assassinations across two decades, and whose existence couldn’t even be confirmed by S.H.I.E.L.D. until the 2000s. Hell, Winter Soldier was able to track Wolverine for over a month without Logan knowing. Remember Wolverine? Enhanced senses and master of stealth himself?

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

But to be honest, I don’t think stealth will be a major factor in this fight. The reason being that I don’t believe it is in-character for either Nightwing or Winter Soldier to use hit-and-run stealth in an encounter like this. It’s more likely that they’ll engage in direct combat. Not to mention that in all those stealth feats that you posted, none of them were done in combat, only for movement or infiltration. I really don’t see Nightwing pulling a disappearing trick here.

And as for the sonar mask, it’s debatable whether or not Nightwing can even deduce that Buck has that capability, particularly in the heat of battle. Even if he did, would he be able to employ a sonic grenade in time before Winter Soldier gets the drop on him? Bucky’s mask was able to map an entire skyscraper and mark all his targets in a matter of seconds:

No Caption Provided

How long do you think it would take Winter Soldier to map this small battlefield? One moment is all it takes for Bucky to locate Dick’s position, and then fire at Nightwing with some lethal rounds. And he can do this before Nightwing has any time to determine that Buck is using sonar, let alone be able to throw a sonic grenade.

I don’t think your suggested strategy would necessarily be a game-changer either. Winter Soldier could just as easily replicate it, considering – surprise surprise – he also carries sleeping gas grenades in his loadout (now you know why I specified ‘assorted grenades!’):

No Caption Provided

And I doubt the foam grenade is anything Bucky can’t evade or react to. Even if Nightwing uses a smoke grenade, Bucky is more than capable of fighting when his vision is marred as shown in the following scans. Amidst heavy smoke, Buck is able to throw his shield perfectly to knock Madame Masque’s gun aside, saving Spider-Woman:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Morals

I don’t know the circumstances behind his fight with Raptor, but it seems like Nightwing was out of options against an enemy that outclassed him and had no choice. And to be frank, it sounds a little out-of-character for Nightwing, as Dick even says ‘I thought I may have killed him’. Considering Dick went into shock after he failed to stop Tarantula from killing Blockbuster, I don’t really see him being this ruthless with morals-on.

And really, this seems like an isolated instance…would a normal in-character Nightwing resort to maiming or lethal force? Again, the fact that Winter Soldier would is an undeniable advantage in such a closely-matched encounter.

Let’s look at one last Bucky Barnes showing:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9

Now bear in mind that when Buck readopted the Winter Soldier identity, his morals were less restraining (like our debate). But as Captain America, he was a little more morals-on, because he had a reputation to uphold. Yet even as Bucky Cap, he was still willing to break out the pistol and shoot Eel and Sin.

And then a bloodlusted Crossbones ambushes and shoots Buck, but even when Bucky’s out-of-it, he still stands up to a vicious beating from Bones. Even after being shot, he’s still able to throw in a kick, stab Crossbones in the thigh, and put a knee to the gonads. But here’s my point:

After an extended fight, Crossbones kicks Bucky out a window, and Black Widow’s flying car manages to save him. At which point Bucky then proceeds to shoot Crossbones in the chest, ending the fight. Aside from being the third time Bucky’s kicked Crossbones’ butt, this serves to illustrate my argument.

That Winter Soldier, while not necessarily a heartless killer, isn’t afraid to resort to lethal force or maiming in order to win an encounter. Which could just turn the tide in this matchup here.

@comicstooge Sure thing man, you want to go to closing arguments now before voting?

Avatar image for wolverine008
#35 Posted by Wolverine008 (51027 posts) - - Show Bio

"And for the most part, Wolverine isn't the most tactical or intelligent combatants."

It looks like you want taste of my bad side @comicstooge :D

No Caption Provided

Avatar image for lvenger
#36 Posted by Lvenger (36181 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark: In relation to my mistaken use of the magnet in my last CAV with CS, whilst I recognise my error in not distinguishing the Mark 29 and Mark 30 armours, I have to say in my research of Iron Man's feats, multiple armaments come up in certain Iron Man armours time and again. Pulse Bolts for one which are concussive force bolts fired from his gauntlets that pick up static electricity as they travel. In short, the further away they're fired from, the more powerful the Pulse Bolts are. I've seen two different Iron Man armours use the Pulse Bolts along with different armours using a holographic projector. But this is just nitpicking from something I've done so don't let it distract you from this awesome debate. Looking forward to the voting!

Avatar image for veshark
#37 Posted by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@wolverine08 Hahaha that picture, oh I'm dead right now.

@lvenger I find it generally best to assume that tech on one armor isn't necessarily on another unless explicitly stated. Of course there are general features that all Iron Man suits have - rockets, repulsors, uni-beam etc., but special functions like magnetic fields aren't too frequently displayed in multiple armors. It varies with the weapon in question, I guess.

I'll be sure to include you in the voting, man ;)

Avatar image for comicstooge
#38 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

@veshark:

Closing arguments sound good. I'll reply shortly.

Avatar image for slimj87d
#39 Posted by slimj87d (15634 posts) - - Show Bio
Avatar image for comicstooge
#40 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

Alright, now for my long overdue response...

Avatar image for ancient_0f_days
#41 Edited by Ancient_0f_Days (17141 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't care who wins...this thread = Bookmarked FOREVER

Avatar image for comicstooge
#42 Posted by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't care who wins...this thread = Bookmarked FOREVER

Haha, cheers man. My response isn't saving, but I'll keep trying.

Avatar image for ancient_0f_days
#43 Posted by Ancient_0f_Days (17141 posts) - - Show Bio

@comicstooge: Seriously man, I feel like cus of debates like these I can attempt to defend these characters in normal debates almost as well as you guys or create a thread knowing full well the capabilities and limits of these characters without fear of any possible mismatch. I've learned more about Nightwing's capabilities here than in any other thread or comic book source I've ever read on the internet (since I haven't been able to pick up Nightwing or Batman comics, the internet has supplied me with info well enough but not like this).

Avatar image for foreverevil
#44 Posted by ForeverEvil (4887 posts) - - Show Bio

wow. great job all around. props.

Avatar image for comicstooge
#45 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

Alright, while we have extensively covered both characters physicals, there just a few more points I'd like to cover, mostly relating to speed.

While it is true Dick might not be as fast as Bruce, the gap between them just prior to the reboot isn't nearly as large as it was in 2002 (as the scans of them fighting were from that year, obviously. :P)

A short while before becoming Batman, Grayson defeated Ra's Al Ghul is a sword fight. While both were armed with swords (Ra's forte mind, you) Dick was indeed capable of avoiding most of Ra's attacks (only getting tagged once) and responding with his own (he landed 3 strikes and gained the upperhand).

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5

This is impressive, considering Ra's performance against Bruce in a swordfight is generally very good and they have even been left in an extended stalemate before:

No Caption Provided

If Dick's speed was really that far behind Bruce's, I doubt he'd have done so well against Ra's in that instance.

Onto more general displays of physicals:

Dick did well against Wildebeest, who was capable of dodging bullets and holding off the Titans, though he was ultimately KO'd by an explosion:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5

And he also had a very solid performance against AzBat (Jean-Paul Valley) in his hulking Batman armor and only lost due to being distracted by a random civilian:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6Gallery image 7Gallery image 8Gallery image 9Gallery image 10
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

Need I remind you Jean-Paul Valley, even at that stage had the skill to necessary to defeat Bane and his physicals were easily in the peak human range, if not above. Dick's performance against him was exceptional, given the fact that not even Bruce Wayne elected to facing him head on.

Dick's fights against superior opponents including the likes of Wildebeest and Jean-Paul rival those fancy Gulag feats of Bucky.

You also make a point to highlight Barnes's endurance. I'll do the same for Nightwing...

He's remained awake for 96 hours straight (and actually was still awake for a while longer in that story, to fight Two-Face):

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

Was able to fight through the pain of impalement, in order to defeat White Knight:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

He took a bank handed fist from an imperfect Superman clone and still landed on his feet (this doubles as a striking feat as he was capable of hurting it):

No Caption Provided

This is impressive as right before that, the clone was doing this:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

One of Dick's most impressive displays however, is when he underwent a blood transfusion to save himself from a deadly virus that was killing Batman. Right after this (and still suffering the effects of the virus), he engages a platoon of highly armed soldiers and defeats them all soundly, before any of them can fire even a single shot:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

So it's safe to assume neither of these gentlemen will tire too much during the course of the fight.

I wanted to finish up the point of physicals by going over Grayson's agility and acrobatic skill, to go along with his speed:

He's avoided gunfire and beaten up gunmen in the small confines of a convenient store, mostly due to his acrobatic skill:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

He's lept well over firefighter perimeter:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

He's even navigated a fight between Cyborg Superman and Doomsday, while dodging lasers and talking to Supergirl, all at the same time:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4

He's even stalemated Cassandra Cain in a race to a crime scene:

No Caption Provided

You mentioned before about how nerve strikes would be ineffective against Bucky due to:

1) His impact resistant suit

2) The fact that Cap knows nerve strikes

Well, funny that...

1) Cap's knowledge of nerve strikes and impact proof suit did him no help when on the receiving end of a nerve strike from Wolverine:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

Cap's impact proof suit along with his natural durability have allowed him to take hits from some of Marvel's heaviest hitters, yet Logan's nerve strike got around this no problem with a nerve strike. Despite Bucky's suit, I see a similar thing happening, given the fact that Bucky, by his own admission, has only a third the physical stats of his former mentor and it's clear that nerve strike seem to negate the protection the suits grant.

And to continue that point....

2) Bucky may have learned from a bunch of ambiguous, no name martial arts practitioners about nerve strikes, but Nightwing learned from a guy who knows almost every nerve strike there is to know, by Nightwing's own admission:

No Caption Provided

And honestly, I'm not even sure that's hyperbole. Batman employs nerve strikes to disable big guys using two fingers, he can erase a person's short term memory, stop their breathing, paralyze a person, insta-kill them etc. He's even dropped meta-humans with his nerve strikes.

And on top of all that, Nightwing himself has actually employed nerve strikes. I don't think I've yet to see a scan of Bucky attacking an opponents nerve cluster/bundle in the manner Nightwing has.

Anyway, I'll respond to the rest of your points in my next post, but I'd best be getting some sleep.

Avatar image for ancient_0f_days
#46 Posted by Ancient_0f_Days (17141 posts) - - Show Bio

Well I guess it's true then, the scorpion really did beat the Batman.....

Avatar image for comicstooge
#47 Posted by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

Alright, now far my long overdue continuation. Sorry it took so long, I was holidaying overseas and didn't have access to scans.

Avatar image for comicstooge
#48 Edited by ComicStooge (22062 posts) - - Show Bio

Now to continue and finish up my closing argument, I'd like to point out while stunning Ares is impressive, wounding Red Hulk isn't as impressive.

After all, Ross has a clear weakness to cutting damage:

No Caption Provided

So it's capable of stunning a 70 tonner, which is still highly impressive.

Still, lets not forget that Bucky's pistol is still a side-arm. Wouldn't he logically attempt to use his assault rifle first, unless he arms out of ammo or he's disarmed?

I think it's highly for him to avoid Bucky's warning/non-lethal shots and disarm him or get close enough to engage is close-quarter combat and use his superior speed, comparable skill, nerve strikes and potentially a gadget or two to edge out a very hard fought victory.

However, there is also the possibility of Dick getting knee-capped. If this happens, Dick has shown enough fortitude to keep fighting even with the odds stacked against him.

Here, Grayson, with a wounded leg, fights against a group of armed men and dispatches them with ease, clearly demonstrating he can fight at peak capacity even when injured:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

And I posted a previous example of Dick dodging at automated turret while his leg was injured, so he's still an able bullet dodger even with a bad leg.

And thanks for the correction in regards to Bruce's taser. While true, we don't know much exactly Nightwing can take with his suit, we also have to factor in how much Bucky will really let loose.

Based on the scans I've seen from Bucky, killing and maining really are last resorts for him. He won't just fry the brain, headshot or crush the skull of any enemy he comes across. Hell, he only riddled 50's Cap with bullets when he really had no other option and he used his explosive rounds only to disarm a guy as Winter Soldier (or was there some context to that I'm missing) so he won't be blowing Dick into meaty chunks anytime throughout the fight.

Furthermore, while Bucky's EMP will slow him down, Dick can use a flashbang or sonic to disorientate Barnes long enough to recover (especially considering neither of those are electronic to my knowledge).

You mentioned Dick isn't likely to use gadgets unless the situation calls for it, well, against such a difficult opponent like Bucky, I think the situation will call for it quite often (a flashbang to escape danger/stun Buck, an explosive on the environment to cause a distraction, a taser to slow WS down).

Anyway, Bucky's use of sleeping gas won't effect Dick, given his nightvision capacity and rebreather (which is standard gear for him). However, based on the scan, it seems Bucky's strategy for avoiding knockout gas is to simply be out of range, which might not work against someone like Nightwing, who's experienced in making sure these sorts of attacks hit their mark.

Oh, but before I finish up, I'd like to put forth a bit of evidence that puts Bucky's showings against Crossbones in a questionable light.

I know previously, you used K4tzman as a reference, so I think it's fair I do the same.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

You can find the thread here: http://www.comicvine.com/forums/battles-7/winter-soldier-vs-bane-549438/.

Sorry to try and discredit a point of yours that was made so early in the fight now, but honestly, I figure late is better than never.

Anyway...

In short:

- Dick has the necessary speed and agility to close the gap between him and Bucky and get him into a fisticuff situation

- NW's own skill, superior speed and potential use of nerve strikes can help him overcome Bucky and his impact resistant suit and claim victory

- Dick's wider array of gadgets grant him the ability to respond to a number of different situations in combat, making him able to escape sticky situations or potentially turn the tide of the battle with a well placed knock-out gas bomb or taser

- Dick's endurance ensures he'll be able to withstand a punch or two from Bucky's robitic arm (given the force he'd be willing to use) and his speed will allow him to avoid it afterwards, so while it could be a game changer, so he could Dick's gadgets or a nerve strike

- Bucky won't be attempting to outright kill Dick. If the fight were to be prolonged, I see him being more likely to use brutal methods against Grayson, however, I'm not sure he'd be willing to even use such methods gainst Dick, who'd clearly be using non-lethal attacks

@veshark alright man, I'm done. You can start preparing your finisher, if you wish! :)

Avatar image for veshark
#49 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

@comicstooge And here we are. Time to bring it home, Buck:

Winter Soldier
Winter Soldier

Physicals

While I am glad that you’ve conceded Dick is not as fast as Batman, I still have to disagree with your argument here. There are several problems with suggesting that the Dick-Bruce speed gap is smaller now, based on one encounter alone. For one: people continuously tout this fight as though Nightwing ‘defeated Ra’s al Ghul’. As shown in the scans, that is clearly not the case.

Ra’s al Ghul is not knocked out or dead or incapacitated, and has not even submitted to defeat. All Nightwing has done is get a few good shots in, and then Dick proceeds to drop his sword and leave the battle. A fully-conscious Ra’s makes no attempt to attack Nightwing, the fight just stops midway. If Ra’s got the last hit in and then suddenly stopped fighting, would we say that the winner of the battle is Ra’s? No, because nobody has won…there is no conclusive ending.

Secondly, I have never read this story before, but Ra’s hardly looks like he’s in the best of shape. His hair is white, and his skin looks pale and dying. I’m not sure as to the context of these scans, so can you confirm that Ra’s is in his physical prime here? This short and inconclusive fight seems hardly comparable to the Batman encounter, when Ra’s had just used the Lazarus Pit.

And aside from the fact that Ra’s might not be in his prime, the fact that he chooses to leave the fight with Nightwing suggests that he wasn’t fighting to his fullest. Meaning that Ra’s wasn’t operating at his top reaction time. In his bout with Batman, Ra’s was fighting to the death, and so was likely motivated and moving at peak speeds. In this encounter, he might have challenged Dick, but his willingness to let go of the fight implies that he wasn’t too driven to fight Nightwing is the first place.

To summarize: how does Nightwing doing a little well against a weakened, unmotivated Ra’s equal to Batman stalemating a Ra’s in his prime multiple times? Aside from the fact that one isolated fight alone doesn’t definitively prove that Dick improved in speed, the fight itself has issues that make it an unfair comparison. Overall, I’m going to disagree with your notion.

Since we’re bringing this debate to a close, I’ll just drop select feats just to reemphasize the two physicals where Winter Soldier holds the clear edge over Nightwing. Namely, strength and durability.

Base-strength: We’ve already seen Winter Soldier felling the likes of Nuke and Ursa Major with strength alone, and here he floors a bloodlusted Wolverine with two kicks. Mighty notable considering Logan’s enhanced strength and adamantium skeleton.

No Caption Provided

Bionic-arm strength: Next up, Buck uses his artificial arm to throw Cap’s shield hard enough to draw blood from Skadi. Of course the shield’s constitution has to be factored in, but Buck’s strength is the primary force behind its momentum.

No Caption Provided

And what makes this feat extra-impressive? Consider the fact that Skadi is an Asgardian-level character with powers bestowed by a Skyfather. And that her durability enables her to be swallowed by a giant sea serpent…

…as well as dive down to the waters of the Marianas Trench – the deepest part of the ocean – where the pressure can go up to 8 tons per square inch. The equivalent of 50 jumbo jets piled on top of an average person.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Durability: Lastly, let’s take one final look at the kind of punishment that Winter Soldier can take. Now I’ve already shown him tanking punches from the likes of Ursa Major and 50s Cap – opponents who are way outside of Bucky’s weight class.

But there isn’t a durability feat more clear-cut than this one. In it, Bucky Cap tries to rescue Steve Rogers, who has time-travelled from WWII. To cut a long story short: Steve thinks that Bucky is a Nazi robot meant to replace him (because of the bionic arm), and attacks him:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Now what makes this showing so noteworthy for Winter Soldier’s durability is that:

a) It’s not some ‘backhand punch’ or any other excuse – this is a direct punch from Captain America to Bucky’s entirely unprotected face. Steve Rogers has the striking power to knockout big brawlers like the Rhino.

b) Cap has no excuse to hold back here. He is entirely under the impression that Bucky is a robot, and his dialogue clearly implies that he’s pissed off. He thinks that his enemy is a machine, so he is definitely not holding back when he makes that punch.

c) The fight ends on a cliffhanger in the first issue (Second scan), and yet at the start of the next issue (Third scan), Bucky is still conscious and perfectly capable of fighting. Durability indeed.

Fighting Skills

For the Wildebeest scans, I don’t see how this is a good showing on Dick’s part at all. None of Nightwing’s hits have any lasting effect, and all he does is end up KOed. But the Azrael battle is a lot more impressive, I’ll definitely grant you. Even though Nightwing gets beaten, he does put up an admirable fight.

I’d disagree that either one of these encounters are equal to Bucky’s Gulag brawls however. The Wildebeest one is not notable at all, and despite being bloodlusted and putting up a solid fight, Nightwing still loses to Azrael. You brought up JPV’s encounter with Bane, but neglected to mention it was Azrael’s armor that saved him (using lights to blind Bane), and Bane had a Venom withdrawal at the time (he even had a mental breakdown).

In contrast, to reiterate…

  1. A depowered Bucky, subject to hunger and constant fights for two months, defeats the superhuman werebear Ursa Major with raw strength alone
  2. Several hours later, Bucky defeats the 1.5-tonner Titanium Man using a club and his own raw strength. Buck accomplishes this despite having been hurt by thugs before the fight, and the fact that Titanium Man is extremely motivated to win
  3. Then, after being exposed to drugs and torture, Bucky is still able to beat Unicorn and engineer his escape. Unicorn has superhuman strength/durability, and this weakened Buck is still able to KO him

In short, I don’t think either Nightwing fight is really comparable to what Winter Soldier accomplished in the Gulag. Nightwing never soloed opponents so far above his weight class (peak human vs. superhumans) while in such a weakened state. Regarding the endurance and agility feats – I don’t have much to add there, they’re par for the course. But as for the pressure points…

Glaring, glaring problems with your comparison to Captain America vs. Wolverine. Let me break it down:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

1) Captain America does not have an impact-resistant costume. His outfit has been torn by punches and explosions, has little armor in it, and has never been stated to offer much additional protection to Cap.

2)That was not a nerve strike. What Wolverine did was inflict a massive hematoma (when blood ruptures out of the vessels), which was caused by him slashing Cap with the pointy tip of his boot. It was not a pressure point move, it was a stab wound, and you can clearly see that in the second page.

3) Wolverine has enhanced strength, and even ordinary knives can puncture Cap’s skin with no problem. The fact that Logan was able to slash at Cap with his boot is no slight on Cap’s physicals or skills at all.

My original point still remains valid. Nightwing’s pressure point attacks will be largely ineffective against Bucky because a) Buck’s impact-resistant suit protects him from physical damage and b) Bucky is more than familiar with nerve strikes and will see the attacks coming. Comparing it to a Captain America fight where pressure point attacks weren’t even used does not help your argument at all.

And I never argued that Winter Soldier would use nerve strikes, all I said was that Nightwing’s pressure attacks will be ineffective. It’s all well-and-good that Dick uses them, but my point remains that Bucky still has protection against these attacks. The fact that Nightwing knows all these nerve strikes means squat against Buck’s impact-resistant suit.

Case-in-point: here Dick’s nerve strikes are useless against someone with enhanced durability. Considering Bucky’s suit can take a punch from 10+ tonner Dr. Doom, I have no doubt that it’ll provide him with a fair degree of protection:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

While we’re here discussing the impact-resistance suit and fighting skills though, I might as well drop this cool feat of Bucky KOing Crossbones’ butt once again:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

First thing to note here: Crossbones tackles Bucky in midair and the two of them fall through a billboard before slamming onto a roof. Crossbones gets a fractured skull when he smashes into brick, but it’s presumably Buck’s impact-resistant suit that saves him from the fall. In fact, Bucky is up-and-running one panel later, while Bones can barely stay on his feet.

Aside from that, it’s just a good showing on Bucky’s part. In all three encounters with Crossbones, Bones always has the drop on Winter Soldier, and yet he still gets his butt handed to him. First he tackles Buck here, then he ambushes Buck with Sin, and then he shoots Bucky in the back…yet he still loses each time. And don’t forget, Bones is the prize pupil of Taskmaster, someone who nearly killed Bullseye, and who has fought Captain America to a stalemate:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5

He was even once able to trump Super-Soldier Cap in hand-to-hand combat (he used the Terrigen Mists to get energy blasts here, but his physicals remain the same), and might have won if he didn’t have a mental breakdown:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2

Now of course one could make the argument that Crossbones isn’t fighting at his best here, and that’s true. After all, he fractured his skull in the fall. But don’t forget that it was Crossbones who tackled Bucky first – meaning that the fall was his own fault. And let’s also note that Bucky is holding back with all his hits here, because he wants to interrogate Crossbones about where the Red Skull is. Buck only KOs him with the final blow.

While we’re discussing Bones, let me also address the K4tzm4n post that you brought up. First off, to be clear, our esteemed moderator only takes a point of contention with the Bucky vs. Sin/Crossbones fight. He acknowledged that Bones was injured in their first fight (which I covered above), and does not mention their third fight (Buck vs. Crossbones/Sin/Serpent Squad).

And I have a very simple answer to any doubts: Winter Soldier did not one-shot Crossbones.

I never made the argument that he did, and when I used that feat, I specifically noted that it took ‘several hits’ before Bones fell. And even after Buck delivered the last punch, Crossbones was stunned but still conscious. K4tzm4n seems to be under the false impression that Buck KOed and ‘one-shotted’ Crossbones, which I believe is what he takes issue with.

Another factor to consider is that this post was from 3 years, and 7 months ago, which was around mid-2010 by my count. At that point in time, Bucky did not have as many feats as he has today. Winter Soldier likely wasn’t as impressive to Viners then as he is now.

Frankly, the consistency that Winter Soldier displays against such a dangerous villain as Crossbones is nothing short of impressive.

You mentioned Bucky only has a third of the stats that Captain America has? Well remember 50s Cap – who is stated to be twice Steve Rogers’ physical superior? And remember when a holding-back Bucky defeated a bloodlusted 50s Cap? Well let’s look at another encounter that Buck has with 50s Cap:

No Caption Provided
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4Gallery image 5Gallery image 6
No Caption Provided

Now let me break down this fight: Bucky tanks a punch from 50s Cap that sends him flying through two walls and out a window. Presumably, Buck’s impact-resistance suit saves his life. Yet even after that, he’s still able to engage this guy in combat, evading his punches and retaliating even though 50s Cap is twice Steve’s physical superior.

Buck then tries delivering a punch with his normal arm, and it actually succeeds in stunning 50s Cap. Buck then tanks one more hit, before using a shield throw + his bionic arm to put down his foe. And though Bad Cap quickly gains consciousness, he is briefly incapacitated on the ground.

So what makes this encounter so impressive? Well for one, Bucky is constantly holding back here. Because 50s Cap looks and sounds like the real Cap, who just recently died, Buck is afraid that it might really be Steve. This is evident in the captions “It can’t really be him…but you can’t take chances, not in this world”. Bucky even refuses to use his sidearm.

And what this implies is that none of Buck’s punches are meant as killshots. He just wants to KO 50s Cap. Which makes it all the more impressive when his normal arm can stun Bad Cap, and when his bionic arm temporarily incaps.

Sure, Buck doesn’t actually succeed in KOing the 50s Cap, but considering the fact that Bucky is holding back from lethal force…and considering that 50s Cap has 2x Steve’s physicals (again, Steve can tank a punch from Namor)…the fact that Buck could even do that says a lot. Imagine how much hurt a holding-back Winter Soldier can inflict on Nightwing.

To close off this section, I’ll just take a brief look at one last Bucky Barnes encounter. Remember all my talk about some of Winter Soldier’s best feats being from when he’s at a disadvantage? In this one, Bucky takes on Baron Helmut Zemo in melee combat.

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

In this encounter, Bucky had been drugged by a nanotech virus for an extended period, and was hallucinating, so he was hardly in prime fighting shape. Not to mention that Zemo has had prep time here, preparing both traps and a shock-absorbing nanosuit.

Yet Buck still floors him in HTH. Now in fairness, Zemo does eventually win this fight thanks to a specially-prepped device that disables Buck’s bionic arm. Still, it’s a cool showing that attests to Winter Soldier’s combat skills, even when he’s at a disadvantage.

Gear

Now, in regards to Rulk’s weakness to piercing damage, it should be noted that Loeb isn’t exactly the master of consistency. I can buy Wolverine’s adamantium claws being able to tear up Rulk’s skin, but peak-human Punisher sticking an ordinary knife into Red Hulk just seems ridiculous.

Not to mention in an earlier Loeb issue of Hulk, in one of Rulk’s first appearances, he shows extreme resistance against bullets! And these aren’t tiny handguns either; these are two giant Gatling guns:

No Caption Provided

Red Hulk appears to be entirely unfazed, tanking these high-caliber rounds with no problem, and all they do is leave little dents in his skin. I mean, these bullets were even able to stun A-Bomb temporarily, and Rulk just shrugs them off.

Now again, I want to point out that the Rulk in Buck’s feat was from another future. I said that his durability is not necessarily comparable to regular Rulk. But since you have decided to use 616 Rulk’s feats as a measurement for the Horseman’s capabilities, I’m simply following your line of logic. And if we use that premise: it still stands that a single bullet from Bucky’s handgun was able to cause pain and bleeding to an enemy that tanks Gatling gun rounds.

And which sounds more implausible? A Hulk-level character being able to tank high-caliber bullets? Or a Hulk-level character getting stabbed by an ordinary knife from a character with no powers whatsoever?

But still, am I necessarily saying that Bucky’s handgun has a greater level of power than a Gatling gun? No. It should be noted that the bullet hit the Horseman’s eye – which can be considered a weaker spot than the rest of the body. But what I am saying is this: if Buck’s pistol could cause pain and draw blood from a Rulk Horseman, Nightwing stands little chance against a similar bullet.

Heck, that’s before we even count the explosive rounds. There’s also the factor of speed to consider: in that Bucky’s handgun bullets travel at a lot faster velocity than ordinary pistols, making them harder for Nightwing to dodge.

You are correct in saying that Winter Soldier’s pistol is just a sidearm though, but I don’t quite see the point you’re trying to make here. I never argued that Buck would only use his handgun; I was just showing off its capabilities. I never even said it would be his first option (and even then, his assault rifle already has a fair likelihood of harming Dick).

The crutch feat you’ve used to justify Nightwing being able to continue fighting even after getting ‘knee-capped’…also has a serious factor you’re not considering. Time. Dick got shot in the events of War Games – specifically #98. The fight you’ve posted comes from #108. That’s ten issues in between. If we use real-world publication times, that’s sevenmonths.

Meaning that Nightwing has had an indeterminate time in between to heal. So Dick being able to fight so effectively against a group of untrained thugs? It’s nowhere comparable to a fresh wound from Winter Soldier’s guns in the middle of a battle.

And as we’ve seen in this scan I posted of Nightwing getting shot…a tiny revolver at close-range to Dick’s chest caused him to collapse onto the ground, unable to chase after the lady who shot him. He had the wind knocked out of him, so imagine what happens when a rifle-caliber bullet penetrates through the suit?

Now I’m not going to argue that Nightwing is going to be completely incapacitated by a single bullet. But what I am saying is that bullets (especially those as powerful as Bucky’s) are going to cause a severe problem for Nightwing when they impact. Even if they don’t cause a fatal hit, considering their caliber and Dick’s lackluster bullet-resistance, it’s gonna hurt real bad.

Side note: I can’t seem to find the feat you mentioned where Nightwing dodges turrets with a bad leg?

And I have doubts as to your suggested tactic for Nightwing to deal with knockout gas as well. For one, like his EMP, Dick won’t have a rebreather in this fight. Regardless of whether or not it’s ‘standard gear’, if you didn’t mention it in the OP, it doesn’t count. By that logic, Winter Soldier would be packing sniper rifles or grenade launchers in this fight.

As for Dick’s night-vision: according to what I’ve read in Iraq War autobiographies, NV users get blinded when exposed to bright lights. And considering the fact that their battlefield is a very well-illuminated location…

No Caption Provided

…Nightwing is essentially going to be even blinder than he was before, if he tries to use night-vision. And as for Bucky’s strategy, in that scan, he was attempting to placate an angry mob. In short, Buck’s use of knockout gas grenades is still very much a real option in this fight.

Moving on to the frequency of Nightwing’s gadget-use, I’m not arguing that Dick won’t use any of his gear. What I am saying is that Nightwing is more of a martial-artist and an acrobat, and so it’s not entirely in-character for gadgets to be his first option. And it rarely matters if his opponent is difficult or not.

Look at all three encounters Nightwing had with Deathstroke – a foe that outclasses him severely. Dick never broke out a single gadget. Look at his bloodlusted fight with Blockbuster, no gadgets either. Or his fight against Bat-Clone. Or Jason Todd, so on, so forth. Again, will Nightwing use gadgets in a fight? Sure. But they won’t be his first choice, nor will they be used often.

And Winter Soldier also has several pieces of equipment that Nightwing has no counters for. Dick doesn’t know that Bucky’s mask has sonar, so he won’t think to use any sonic grenades. Buck’s impact-resistance suit has taken hits from 10-tonners, and as we’ve seen, Nightwing’s MA skills don’t exactly work well on durable foes. And Buck’s electric shock is not only a surprise weapon, but neither Nightwing nor his gadgets have any inherent defense to it.

Winter Soldier’s equipment is essentially more effective because a) He uses his gear more than Dick and b) It’s a lot easier for Bucky to hurt Dick than vice-versa.

  • Winter Soldier’s pistol/rifle plus his accuracy will be hard for Dick to dodge. Nightwing’s gadgets are all thrown by hand, and easily-avoidable for a bullet-timer like Buck.
  • Winter Soldier’s guns have a higher rate of attack, and are more sustained, compared to Nightwing’s one-off gadgets.
  • Winter Soldier’s weapons inflict more damage. He goes straight for serious injury – and Dick’s suit offers no defense against bullets. Buck can harm Nightwing a lot quicker than the other way around. Compare that to Dick, who has no lethal gear, and predominantly relies on blunt-force and MA – of which Buck has a strong defense against thanks to his impact-resistance suit.

Morals-Off

I’m going to have to strongly disagree on your stance here. Bucky does not consider killing or serious injury as his last resorts. They’re not his first option, but he’s not so averse to them either that they’re his last either. The difference here is that while Nightwing is a vigilante, Buck will always be a soldier – and soldiers are pragmatists.

A CaV implies that both characters already have the motive to fight, and that Winter Soldier will treat Nightwing like any other foe. And as we’ve seen numerous times in the feats I’ve posted above, death or serious injury have always been prime options for Bucky.

You mentioned that Bucky only resorted to shooting 50s Cap when all other options failed – but there is context to be served here. 50s Cap is a special case because Bucky has read his file, and believes that he isn’t evil, just misguided. He wants to save 50s Cap and makes constant references to it throughout the entire battle, like so:

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3

Even after shooting 50s Cap, Bucky still searches for the body, because he truly felt that the man wasn’t a villain, just a victim of circumstance. They had history. If Bad Cap had been any other foe, Winter Soldier would have blown his skull off the minute he got the chance.

As for the scan of Buck disarming Arkady with an explosive round – yes, again, there is context there. Winter Soldier wasn’t trying to kill the sleeper agent; he needed him alive for some complex spy plot, if memory serves. This is evident at the end of the battle when Arkady triggers the self-destruct for Buck’s pistol and injures himself, and Buck expresses frustration:

No Caption Provided

But in your average combat scenario, Winter Soldier is not against killing or maiming at all. To prove that to you and the readers: let’s look at all the scans I’ve posted so far. I’m not going to use any new scans, but let’s just work with what we’ve got…

Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3Gallery image 4
Gallery image 1Gallery image 2Gallery image 3
  1. Here he kills three HYDRA agents…
  2. Here are the three AIM grunts that Bucky Cap had no hesitation in shooting – blowing off all three kneecaps and possibly crippling them for life…
  3. Here he shoots a flying Watchdog in the gut…
  4. Here he shoots Madame Masque in the head – and his fellow Avengers later suspect that he didn’t know her mask was bulletproof…
  5. And here he shoots Sin, Eel, and Crossbones without hesitation – though they all live, he obviously shot them with the intention of lethal force…

We can even look at other instances that I haven’t posted yet, including…throwing an arrow into the neck of a HYDRA goon, killing him:

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

Or throwing a knife into a Zephyr spy’s chest, killing him…

No Caption Provided

Or shooting indiscriminately at Professor Chin’s henchmen, wounding several of them…

No Caption Provided

Or him defeating Living Laser with some loose electrical cables…and then implying that he was trying to kill Laser…

No Caption Provided
No Caption Provided

And none of these scenarios even have him bloodlusted like the Gulag fights. It was just Bucky in random encounters against enemies (like this CaV), and realizing that death or serious injury would be the most efficient way of ending the battle. The only time when Buck refuses to kill or maim is when there are story or character circumstances (or an easier method).

While Nightwing will refuse to use severe force no matter the situation, it’s always an open option for Bucky. Now again, I’m not saying that Winter Soldier is going to open up the battle with killshots. That much is true. But if he needs to later on: he will. Would Buck execute Nightwing if he’s shot Dick in the knees? No, but he can sure as hell knock him out with a good bionic arm punch.

It seems a little silly to imply that Bucky won’t use his two main weapons in a battle – his rifle and his pistol. In short: killing and maiming? Far from a last resort for the Winter Soldier.

Closing Arguments (Why Winter Soldier Wins?)

Superior Strength: Dick may be faster by a little, but Buck is significantly stronger than Nightwing. His blows have felled the bulletproof Nuke, and even when weakened, he was able to defeat superhumans like Ursa Major and Titanium Man with raw strength. And that’s before we even get to the bionic arm: that can hurt the likes of 50-tonners like Hyde and Wrecker, or even powerhouse-level characters like Iron Man and Skadi.

Higher Offense: This can be summarized as ‘It’s a lot easier for Winter Soldier to hurt Nightwing that vice-versa’. In melee combat, Buck is obviously stronger with both base strength and the bionic arm, and nearly as fast. In ranged combat: his bullets deal more damage, are faster, and have a longer sustained rate. Nightwing’s attacks are designed to be non-lethal, and will take a longer time to put Buck down. Winter Soldier’s attacks are all meant to greviously wound, and one good shot is all it takes to harm Dick…

Higher Defense: Nightwing’s costume offers minimal protection against Bucky’s weapons. It has only shown bullet-resistance against a tiny revolver, and will not hold up at all to Buck’s rifle or handgun. Likewise, the suit’s resistance to blunt force also seems minor, as a powerless Bane was able to KO Dick by simply slamming him against a wall. Compare that to Winter Soldier’s impact-resistance suit, which can tank hits from the likes of Dr. Doom and Extremis Iron Man's repulsors. Most of Nightwing’s attacks will be blunt force or nerve strikes, and Bucky’s suit is insulated against both.

Morals-Off: The argument that Bucky will hold back because Dick doesn’t use lethal force is a shaky one. In the heat of battle and with the motive to fight, would Buck really hold back against someone throwing Wing-Dings at him? And an opponent who is clearly well-trained? As covered in detail above, the fact that Buck is willing to resort to lethal force or serious-injury with his firearms is an edge in such a closely-matched fight as this.

Nightwing’s Advantages: Are mostly not such a severe threat. While I concede that Dick is quicker, it’s not by a sizeable margin. More importantly, Dick has rarely shown evasive skills against someone with Buck’s reflexes and accuracy, and Nightwing has been tagged plenty before. Nerve strikes are questionable against Buck’s impact-resistance suit, and as covered above, Dick’s variety of gear are hampered by their inefficiency. And the fact that Nightwing largely relies on minimal gadgets per battle.

In closing, I just want to say that this is a very closely-matched battle between two awesome sidekicks-turned-solo-heroes. These are two of my favorite characters, and I believe a fair argument can be made for both sides. That being said, I think that Winter Soldier’s advantages help him to edge out and eventually secure this victory.

Avatar image for veshark
#50 Edited by Veshark (10448 posts) - - Show Bio

As always, a pleasure debating with you, @comicstooge. Anything else you'd like to throw in before we go to voting?