Doctor Doom made his first appearance in Fantastic Four #5 (July 1962)
Victor von Doom was born decades ago to a tribe of Latverian gypsies under the rule of an unnamed nobleman called the Baron. Victor's mother was witch Cynthia Von Doom who died by Mephisto's hand while Doom was young. His father Werner was the leader of the tribe and a renowned medicine man who kept his wife's sorceress life quiet in order to protect Victor from a similar fate. Soon after Cynthia's death, the Baron's wife grew incurably ill from cancer and Werner was called to the capitol to heal her. When she succumbed to illness, the Baron labeled Werner a murderer and called for his death. Werner escaped with young Victor, having realized the night before the woman would die. He goes on to die of exposure on the mountainside, cradling the boy in a final embrace and giving him his garments to keep him warm. Victor survived and, on return to the gypsy camp, discovered his mother's occult instruments and swore revenge on the Baron. Victor grew into a headstrong and brilliant man, combining sorcery and technology to create fantastic devices to keep the Baron's men at bay and protect the gypsies. His exploits attracted the attention of the dean of Empire State University, who sent someone to the camp. Offered the chance to study in the United States, Doom chooses to leave his homeland and his love, Valeria, behind. Once in the United States, Victor met fellow student and future nemesis Reed Richards, who was intended to be his roommate, but Doom disliked him and asked for another roommate. After a time, Victor constructed a machine intended to communicate with the dead. Though Richards tried to warn him about a flaw in the machine, seeing his calculations were a few decimals off, Victor continued on with disastrous results. The machine violently failed and the resulting explosion seemingly severely damaged his face. It is later revealed that Ben Grimm, a friend of Richards who despised Victor for his superior attitude, tampered with the machine. He would later blame himself for Doom's eventual rise to power, but never revealed this information to anyone. Expelled after the accident, Victor traveled the world until he collapsed on a Tibetan mountainside. Rescued by a clan of monks, Victor quickly mastered the monks' disciplines as well as the monks themselves. Victor then forged himself a suit of armor, complete with a scowling mask, and took the name Doctor Doom. As Doom, he would go on to menace those he felt responsible for his accident—primarily, Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four. He succeeded in taking over Latveria, taking an interest in the welfare of the Roma.
In his first appearance, Doom captures the Invisible Girl, using her as a hostage so the Fantastic Four will travel back in time to steal the enchanted treasure of Blackbeard which will help him conquer the world, but he is fooled by Reed Richards, who swaps the treasure with worthless chains. Doctor Doom then forms an alliance with the Sub-Mariner, who places a magnetic device in the Baxter Building. However Doom uses this to pull him and the Fantastic Four into space, thinking this will rid him of those capable of preventing him conquering the world. But the Sub-Mariner gets to Doom's ship and returns the Baxter Building to New York, while Doom is left on an asteroid. Returning to Earth after learning the secrets of an advanced alien race, the Ovids, Doom exchanges consciousnesses with Mr. Fantastic; Richards, inhabiting Doom's body, switches the two back, and Doom ends up trapped in a micro-world when he is hit with a shrinking ray he had intended to use on the rest of [The Fantastic Four](movie:34667). Doom takes over the micro-world, but leaves after the FF end his rule. He is then thrown into space when he attempts to do this to the FF. Doom is saved by Rama-Tut, and he returns to Earth to destroy the Fantastic Four by turning each member against the other using a special berry juice. Richards outwits Doom by using the hallucinogenic juice against the villain. Doom, believing he has killed Richards in a test of willpower, departs certain of his victory and superior intelligence.