Alpha Flight is a Canadian team of adventurers, most of whom have superhuman powers, which was organized under the auspices of the Canadian government's Department H. Roughly ten years ago James MacDonald Hudson, an engineer, resigned from the Am-Can Petro-Chemical Company in Canada when he learned that a special super-powered suit he had built for the company for use in geological exploration was going to be used by the United States military instead. Hudson secretly destroyed Am-Can's copies of the plans for the suit and made off with the psycho-cybernetic helmet that was necessary to make the suit work, and which he could claim as his own property with legal justification. Shocked by what happened to Hudson at Am-Can, Heather McNeil, the executive secretary to Hudson's immediate superior there, Jerome Jaxon, also resigned from the company. McNeil arranged for herself and Hudson to meet with officials of the Canadian government, who heard their story and settled with Am-Can for any damages incurred when Hudson reclaimed his helmet. Hudson was then invited by the Canadian prime minister to participate in the creation of Department H, a top-secret research and development agency within the Canadian Ministry of Defense. Soon afterwards Hudson married McNeil, and within the next few years Hudson had recruited the mutant called Wolverine as one of the Department's special agents.
Reading a newspaper account of how Reed Richards and three of his friends became the Fantastic Four inspired James Hudson to create a team of superhumanly powerful agents to go on missions for the Canadian government. Wolverine aided Hudson in the initial phases of the creation of the team, which would be called Alpha Flight, and it was planned that Wolverine would lead the team. However, Wolverine eventually left Department H for his own reasons and joined the X-Men. Hudson continued to develop his super-powered suit, and it eventually became the costume that he himself wore as a member of Alpha Flight. As a costumed agent Hudson at first called himself Weapon Alpha, later changed his code name to Vindicator, and finally settled upon the name Guardian. Hudson reluctantly became the leader of Alpha Flight himself after Wolverine's resignation.
The standard procedure for recruits for Alpha Flight was that they would begin as members of a training team called Gamma Flight. Upon successfully completing their initial training, recruits would move into a transitional team, Beta Flight, to receive more advanced training. Those who proved to be successes in Beta Flight as well would finally join Alpha Flight, the team of agents who would participate in major missions.
Alpha Flight had six members when Department H was disbanded by the Canadian government for financial reasons: Aurora, Guardian, Northstar, Sasquatch, Shaman, and Snowbird. However, the six members decided to continue acting as a team, performing altruistic missions, and were joined by two trainees from Beta Flight, Marinna and Puck. In practice, however, the majority of the members undertook the same mission infrequently after the team became independent of the government, simply because the various members lived in different parts of Canada.
James Hudson was presumed to have been killed in the course of Alpha Flight's first major battle with a group called Omega Flight. Alpha Flight, however, continued as a team despite the loss of its founder, and the members chose Hudson's highly capable wife Heather to act as their new leader. Heather adopted her husband's costume and his codename, Vindicator. The Canadian government resumed funding Alpha Flight, and the team established a headquarters on Tamarind Island off British Columbia. Other members who joined Alpha Flight were Wildchild and Windshear. Funding problems plagued this group and it was then forced to disband once again.
Now they have been brought back together by a more stable and powerful Department H with deeper secrets yet to be revealed. Recently, after joining Wolverine against the Wendigo and a conflict with the X-Men regarding a student at Xavier's school, Alpha Flight disappeared, forcing Sasquatch to seek out a patchwork version of the team to find them.
Sasquatch offered membership to Yukon Jack (king of a hidden civilization) and then Zuzha Yu (daughter of Puck), but they both turned him down. Despite reviving Nemesis from suspended animation and awakening Centennial's longdormant powers, neither of them wanted to join either. Eventually tricking them all into becoming a part of the team, and joined by the new Major Mapleleaf, son of the WW2 hero of the same name, Sasquatch prepared them for a battle with the Plodex, who were responsible for the disappearance of the prior members. Discovering that the Plodex ship was full of unhatched eggs, the group hit a moral snag; although the Plodex were a warlike race, many members felt they still deserved a chance to change. The infighting stopped when the prior Alpha Flight decided to take the Plodex back to their home planet and raise them themselves. Sasquatch's group, along with a young Plodex named Mar who stayed behind, were left to defend Canada. While out on a date Mapleleaf and Puck were attacked by wax duplicates of dozens of heroes, controlled by the Manimator, whom Puck easily defeated with a left hook.
Following a struggle with a mind-controlled Big Hero 6, events spiraled out of control when the team tried to use time travel to save former enemy Flashback, whose future self had been killed in a previous battle. A series of efforts resulted in history being rewritten for the worse with each change they made. Sasquatch was ultimately able to enlist the past Shaman's help in stabilizing the timeline and saving Flashback. Soon after, Centennial and Nemesis apparently perished, Mar' and Yukon Jack left, and Puck and Major Mapleleaf went to reserve status.