This threw a wrench in the works as Thanos intended to betray Annihilus and end the threat himself.
To make up for her mistake, Drax freed the Silver Surfer who in turn released his former master Galactus. To express his thanks, Galactus shunted Drax and Moondragon to a world far from the action. Ultimately, his training with Rider paid off as the Nova succeeded in killing Annihilus, ending the war.
Drax remained out of the way until the Phalanx-infected Nova and Gamora tracked him down so they could make him a Select. The process went well and he teamed up with Gamora to take on Rider after Nova surpassed the Phalanx programming. They followed him to Knowhere and another planet where he made an ally of Technarch and former New X-Man Warlock who figured out how to purge them of the Phalanx. Drax then entered the real battlefield with Nova, Gamora, Warlock, and his brethren Tyro to assist in the ultimate defeat of Ultron and his Phalanx forces.
Drax soon joined Peter Quill and his nascent Guardians of the Galaxy to put an end to potentially massive threats while still in their infancy. He was none too pleased to find out that fellow member Mantis mentally pushed him to join upon Peter Quill's request, but ultimately stuck with the rag-tag group through this first incarnation. This put them into conflict with the Universal Church of Truth, Skrulls, Magus, Thanos, and the murderous denizens of the Cancerverse.
Along the way, Drax helped Phyla-Vell bring her girlfriend and his daughter Moondragon back to life, though it meant tangling with Maelstrom, the Dragon of the Moon, and Oblivion. Later, while trying to stop the threat of the Cancerverse from overrunning their reality, Drax seemingly lost his life to Thanos. It was later revealed that anyone from the regular universe could not die there, so realizing the futility of an enduring fight with any enemies, Richard Rider sacrificed himself to send Star-Lord and Drax back home.
The Guardians of the Galaxy soon reunited to help the Avengers stop Thanos' latest plan. He and his teammates spent the next era saving Earth, stopping Thanos, rescuing an alternate reality Jean Grey from the Shi'Ar, watching over Peter Quill as head of the Spartax government, serving as a Guardian under Kitty Pryde, and fighting Mister Knife and Hala. They also became involved in the second Earth Super Hero Civil War to support one-time teammate Carol Danvers, AKA Captain Marvel.
During Pryde's leadership of the Guardians, Drax went out on his own to kill Thanos once again. He failed in his primary mission but succeeded in palling around with Terrax, fighting in Fin Fang Foom's arena, and reuniting with Cammi and Pip the Troll.
Between the events of second Civil War and rejoining Star-Lord, Gamora, Rocket, and Groot as the all-new Guardians of the Galaxy, Drax traveled to a remote planet to hunt, but wound up stumbling upon a race of poachers and slavers. He quickly murdered the evil ones, only to discover that the'd tied their own lives directly into those of their slaves - when one of the bad guys died, so did the innocents. After that, Drax took a vow of pacifism that took a great deal of concentration and dedication to maintain.
While his teammates don't specifically understand why he continues rolling with them when violence is an almost guaranteed result of their actions, they keep him around because he's family.