Since the teasers for the summer's mega-movie hit YouTube, we've thought of the many ways that a fight between the two Marvel titans might play out—in addition to what the trailers have shown us up to that point.
But ironically, we soon realized that we knew little about Stark's colossal armor, other than the fact that it's essentially a humanoid atomic bomb. So we Googled the darned thing, and here are some tidbits we came up with.
1) The armor first appeared in this issue:
That's Iron Man Volume 1 Number 304, released more than 20 years ago in May 1994.
2) The Hulkbuster was used against the Hulk because Stark and Banner had a rather petty misunderstanding
Hulk got mad at Stark because he thought Stark was making gamma-radiation bombs. Knowing fully well that the Hulk is rather hard to deal with when he's mad, Stark developed the armor in anticipation of a confrontation.
In the issue, Stark was able to hold his own against Hulk in a sustained battle. There was no crushing end though, as the two gentlemen eventually talked it out (and presumably, hugged it out like real bros) with Stark saying that the news the Hulk heard was merely a smear campaign.
3) The Hulkbuster is not a standalone armor
Unlike Iron Man's collection of metal-clad bodysuits, the Hulkbuster is more like an exoskeleton, in which Iron Man can fit into, depending on the situation. Facing the Hulk is obviously one such situation where the Hulkbuster makes a lot of sense.
4) The Hulkbuster can outlift the Hulk—technically
The Hulkbuster's magno-hydraulic pseudo-musculature allows Stark to lift up to 175 tons. The Hulk's lifting capacity starts out at 100 tons, but increases as he gets angrier. The longer a fight drags on, the smaller the chance that the Hulkbuster defeats Hulk.
5) It also features other anti-Hulk specifications
The Hulkbuster features sensors designed to detect gamma radiation, which the Hulk emits and boasts of impact-resistant carbon composite plating, which is a fancy way of saying the Hulk can't crush this armor easily.
6) The Hulkbuster has a Mark II version as well
In 2003, the Hulkbuster was upgraded for the comics' "World War Hulk" event. It boasted more anti-Hulk features such as rocket-boosted gauntlets that could punch the Hulk back by several miles and adamantium-tipped needles. The suit was destroyed when the Hulk dropped the entire Stark Building onto the armor.
The one in the film was inspired more by this version rather than the first one.
7) The Hulkbuster has appeared in other media, prior to the movie
The Hulkbuster has also appeared in the 1994 animated Iron Man show:
And then again in Iron Man: Armored Adventures, which aired from 2009 to 2012:
Video via Anime Chanel
8) The Hulkbuster has also appeared in an alternate Marvel universe
The armor appeared in Ultimate Comics Ultimates #25 which came out in August 2013. It looks starkly different: