PYRAMOIDS

Classification: Extraterrestrial (presumably) objects of elemental power

Creator: Unrevealed

User/Possessors: The Challenger, the Grandmaster (En Dwi Gast)

First Appearance: (mentioned): Avengers VI#676 (March, 2018)
(fully seen): Avengers VI#677 (March, 2018)

Powers/Abilities/Functions: Each Pyramoid represented an elemental force, each with its own set of abilities once activated. For example, the earth Pyramoid generated a sort of black hole effect, pulling matter and energy into itself, while the fire Pyramoid projected a stream of swirling flame into the air, super heating the atmosphere around it for a variety of weather effects. The thunder Pyramoid affected weather patterns sufficient enough to generate super-storms with gale-force winds and lightning while the water Pyramoid could lower ambient temperature to create an extreme build up of ice. The soul Pyramoid could summon forth the spiritual souls of the recently deceased.

Each Pyramoid could also magnify any existing weather patterns in their vicinity, especially if the weather patterns mirrored the particular Pyramoids' element, to protect itself and all Pyramoids could levitate under their own power.

History: (Avengers VI#686 (fb) - BTS) - A competition between the Elders of the Universe known as the Challenger and Grandmaster was proposed and the Grandmaster used his daughter Voyager as a hidden pawn, tasked with capturing the final Pyramoid for Grandmaster to assure he won the competition.

(Avengers VI#681 (fb)) - After recruiting his Lethal Legion as champions, the Grandmaster informed them that, as part of his competition against the Challenger, the world-shaking Pyramoids would be scattered across the Earth battlefield and that must be obtained in order to triumph.

(Avengers VI#676 - BTS) - When the Challenger and Grandmaster's chosen champions were transported to Earth to begin the game between the two cosmic beings, the two groups of champions began to fight but the Challenger and Grandmaster ended the conflagration, warning that neither group was to engage the other until the first Pyramoid was activated.

(Avengers VI#677) - In front of the assembled Pyramoids, Grandmaster suggested to the Challenger that they begin their game and as his first move, the Grandmaster chose the earth Pyramoid while the Challenger chose fire. Once activated, the two Pyramoids were sent to Earth, where the earth Pyramoid landed in Rome, Italy and the fire Pyramoid landed in Peru. The earth Pyramoid generated an effect that began pulling everything towards it while the fire Pyramoid began generating fire that burst into the sky. The Grandmaster's Lethal Legion, having split into two groups, each arrived at the Pyramoids' locations, where the Legion members attempted to acquire the Pyramoids to earn points for their respective Elder. Avengers contingents arrived moments later to battle the Lethal Legion as the Pyramoids affected the environment surrounding them.

(Avengers VI#678) - The Avengers and Lethal Legion continued battling around the Pyramoids' locations and the Challenger's Black Order soon arrived as well, prompting Synapse to read the thoughts of the Black Order's Ebony Maw. Learning that the Black Order and Lethal Legion were competing for the alien Pyramoids, Synapse informed the Avengers, who allowed the Black Order and Lethal Legion to fight among themselves until the Black Order's Black Dwarf grabbed the earth Pyramoid and was seemingly disintegrated. As the Pyramoid and Black Dwarf disappeared, a giant number one appeared in the air to signify a point for the Challenger and the Avengers sent Lightning to Peru to prevent anyone from acquiring the fire Pyramoid and suffering the same fate. In Peru, the unaware Avengers ally Red Hulk leapt for the Pyramoid and Lightning flew as fast as he could to prevent anyone was grabbing the Pyramoid. Before either could acquire the Pyramoid, Human Torch grabbed it.

(Avengers VI#679) - Seemingly obliterated, the Human Torch and the fire Pyramoid disappeared, prompting the Black Order and Lethal Legion to depart as Grandmaster watched the events from afar. The Human Torch then appeared, suspended within a large gemstone next to Black Dwarf, who had also grabbed the first Pyramoid. Looking at the frozen combatants, the Challenger remarked on how Grandmaster had a chance to even the score of their game but one of the game's obstacles (the Avengers) had grabbed the Pyramoid instead, accusing the game board itself of being a better game player than the Grandmaster. When Grandmaster admitted he had chose Earth for the game board because it was the ultimate battleground for the ultimate game, the Challenger angrily threatened Grandmaster, accusing him of stealing his title. Grandmaster saved himself by reminding the Challenger of the game and the Challenger agreed to continue into the next round, summoning the electric Pyramoid while leaving Grandmaster with the water Pyramoid. Insisting that he could use the water Pyramoid to bury the Challenger's champions in ice, Grandmaster remarked that the Challenger was one player short, prompting the Challenger to reveal that he was holding one player in reserve.

(Avengers VI#680) - The thunder Pyramoid was activated in Los Alamos, New Mexico, while the water Pyramoid was activated near an Antarctic research station, and the Avengers quickly learned of their appearances. Avengers ally Dr. Toni Ho informed the two Avengers squads in Peru and Rome, explaining where the two new Pyramoids had appeared and how each had begun affecting the weather in their vicinity, from super-storms in New Mexico to extreme ice build up in Antarctica. The Challenger's Black Order soon arrived in Antarctica, fighting off the Pyramoid-created ice storms in an effort to acquire the Pyramoid but a squad of Avengers arrived moments behind them and the Avengers battled the Black Order to prevent their gaining the Pyramoid.

(Avengers VI#681) - While one squad of Avengers took down the Black Order in Antarctica when Rogue absorbed the powers and memories of the Black Order's Corvus Glaive, another squad of Avengers battled the Lethal Legion in New Mexico, where the thunder Pyramoid was creating super-storms. During the battle, the Lethal Legion's Metal Master attempted to acquire the thunder Pyramoid by first encasing it in metal for safe handling, only to be knocked aside by Scarlet Witch. In Antarctica, Rogue learned from Corvus Glaive's stolen memories that the Pyramoids, Lethal Legion and Black Order were all part of the game between Grandmaster and Challenger and as she informed the other Avengers, the Lethal Legion's Ferene the Other snuck by and grabbed the water Pyramoid, earning a point for the Grandmaster and disappearing in the process like all others who touched Pyramoids. As the battle continued in New Mexico, the Avenger Synapse also learned of the Elders of the Universe's competition by reading the mind of the Lethal Legion's Captain Glory and she quickly warned the other Avengers not to let anyone touch the thunder Pyramoid. The Lethal Legion immediately went on the offense, keeping the Avengers distracted while Lethal Legion member Mentacle telekinetically forced one of her Blood Brother teammates towards the thunder Pyramoid. The unwilling Blood Brother begged for Mentacle not to force him to touch the Pyramoid but the Avenger Hawkeye and his ally Red Wolf arrived and hit the Blood Brother with an explosive arrow, preventing him from touching the Pyramoid.

(Avengers VI#682) - The battle for the thunder Pyramoid in New Mexico raged on as Red Wolf eyed the Pyramoid. After much thought, Red Wolf took advantage of the distracted Avengers and Lethal Legion and rushed for the Pyramoid himself, grabbing it and disappearing like all others who had touched Pyramoids and leaving the Avengers to think him dead. From afar, the Challenger remarked that the Avengers were becoming more trouble than they were worth and as the next round of the Elders' game began, Grandmaster claimed the soul Pyramoid and placed it within the hospital where Avengers Beast and Wasp (Nadia) were taking care of the Avengers' injured butler, Edwin Jarvis. When the soul Pyramoid activated, it summoned the spirits of the recently deceased, who ran amuck in the hospital.

(Avengers VI#683) - From their auxiliary headquarters, the Avengers witnessed the soul Pyramoid's activation and its subsequent manipulation of weather patterns around the hospital as Beast and Wasp attempted to keep the hospital patrons calm while battling the summoned spirits. Wasp eventually decided to touch the Pyramoid and sacrifice herself to save others but the Pyramoid oddly rejected her touch and her Pym Particles proved ineffective against the Pyramoid as well. After Beast tended to Edwin Jarvis, Beast and Wasp watched the Pyramoid, unsure how to handle it as the Avengers ally Voyager appeared, claiming she would handle the Pyramoid. A recovering Jarvis tried to tell Beast and Wasp of Voyager's alteration of the Avengers' memories but Voyager teleported away with the Pyramoid as Jarvis revealed that Voyager had never been an Avenger.

(Avengers VI#684) - Voyager's acquisition of the final Pyramoid was witnessed from afar by Challenger and Grandmaster, leaving the Challenger's hidden player, the resurrected Hulk, without a target. Arriving at the Avengers' auxiliary headquarters, Voyager sealed herself in a security room to prevent anyone from touching the Pyramoid but when the Challenger learned of Voyager's location, he sent the Hulk after the Avengers to acquire the Pyramoid.

(Avengers VI#685) - Voyager remained in the Avengers' security room with the floating soul Pyramoid as the Hulk trounced the Avengers outside trying to prevent the Hulk from touching the Pyramoid. The Black Order's Black Swan and Proxima Midnight soon arrived as well to assist in the acquisition of the Pyramoid, battling the Avengers while the Hulk began pounding on the security room door.

(Avengers VI#686) - Voyager continued guarding the final Pyramoid as the Avengers battled the Hulk and the Black Order outside. The angry, mind-manipulated Hulk eventually broke into the security room, where Voyager, having witnessed the Avengers' bravery and courage first-hand, decided to fight alongside the heroes. Hulk easily swatted Voyager aside, however, and, realizing he was being manipulated, smashed the Pyramoid, destroying it and effectively cutting off the link between himself and the Challenger. With the Pyramoid's destruction, Voyager revealed her ruse to the Avengers, explaining how the Grandmaster had used her as a pawn to acquire the final Pyramoid and point for himself.

Comments: Created by Mark Waid, Al Ewing, Jim Zub and Pepe Larraz.

It was unclear what exactly happened to the acquired Pyramoids once someone touched them. It's possible they were destroyed when the Pyramoid and whoever touched it disappeared but it's also possible that the Pyramoid were transformed into the gem-like prisons that housed those who touched the Pyramoids. The soul Pyramoid, however, was definitely destroyed when it was smashed by the Hulk.

Some online sources list the Pyramoids as appearing unidentified in Avengers VI#675 but I could not find any appearance at all of the Pyramoids in that issue.

Writers Jim Zub and Al Ewing had this to say about the creation of the Pyramoids (taken from the bonus page in Avengers VI#682):
JIM: "These 'Pyramoids' are kind of my fault.

We knew we'd need some of kind of point-bearing MacGuffins for the cosmic game we were putting together with the Grandmaster against the Challenger, but didn't know exactly what they should be. Something elemental made sense, but there still had to be a focal point. The objects themselves.

The Marvel Universe already has infinity gems and cosmic cubes, so I thought we could create something in that vein, but a different shape.

'How about pyramid-shaped, like a four-sided die?'

I think Tom said something to the effect of 'Fine, but we can't call them 'pyramids.'

'Sure, it's alien, so it'll be a 'pyramoid' or whatever...'

Mark snorted 'pyramoid?'

'Or whatever.'

Within a few minutes, everyone was using 'pyramoid' as a placeholder. An hour after that, it just kind of...stuck.

Don't look at me like that! 'Spider-Man' sounds silly if you take away your nostalgia for the world's wittiest web slinger. 'Pyramoid' is totally valid in a world with 'Magneto,' 'The Sub-Mariner' and 'Mentacle.'

I sketched up some Kirby-esque symbols to represent the elemental power contained within each Pyramoid, these cosmic d4's that will determine the fate of Earth, and sent it along to the group, wondering when they would stop me.

I'm still waiting."

AL: "I've got a little to add here-though I remember some discussion about the fifth pyramoid. What comes after Earth, Air, Fire and Water? What's the fifth element? 'raw power' was one of the suggestions, but I was knee-deep in alchemy for INHUMANS at the time, so I was lobbying for 'spirit,' and we ended up somewhere in between the two-as readers will see, the final Pyramoid has plenty of both.

Funnily enough, one or two of Jim's symbols remind me strongly of alchemical symbols--I don't know if they were a basis, but if not I'll take that as evidence of the Jungian collective unconscious at work. I found them very pleasing, anyway--a perfect cross between Kirbytech and mystic sigil."

Jim Zub's sketch of the symbols is included here in this profile for reference...

Profile by Proto-Man.

CLARIFICATIONS:
The Pyramoids have no known connections to:


images: (without ads)
Avengers VI#677, p7, pan2 (assembled Pyramoids, main image)
Avengers VI#677, p7, pan3-4 (Grandmaster & Challenger choosing the earth and fire Pyramoids)
Avengers VI#680, p4, pan3-5 (Dr. Toni Ho learning about the thunder and water Pyramoids)
Avengers VI#682, p16, pan4 (Grandmaster claiming the soul Pyramoid)
Avengers VI#686, p16, splash page (Hulk destroying the soul Pyramoid)
Avengers VI#682, bonus page (Pyramoid symbols)


Appearances:
Avengers VI#675 (March, 2018) - Mark Waid, Al Ewing, Jim Zub (writers), Pepe Larraz (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#676 (March, 2018) - Mark Waid, Al Ewing, Jim Zub (writers), Pepe Larraz (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#677 (March, 2018) - Mark Waid, Al Ewing, Jim Zub (writers), Pepe Larraz (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#678 (March, 2018) - Mark Waid, Al Ewing, Jim Zub (writers), Pepe Larraz (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#679 (April, 2018) - Al Ewing, Jim Zub, Mark Waid (writers), Kim Jacinto (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#680 (April, 2018) - Al Ewing, Jim Zub, Mark Waid (writers), Kim Jacinto (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#681 (April, 2018) - Al Ewing, Jim Zub, Mark Waid (writers), Kim Jacinto, Mike Perkins (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#682 (April, 2018) - Al Ewing, Jim Zub, Mark Waid (writers), Sean Izaakse (art), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#683 (May, 2018) - Jim Zub, Mark Waid, Al Ewing (writers), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#684 (May, 2018) - Jim Zub, Mark Waid, Al Ewing (writers), Paco Medina, Joe Bennett (pencils), Juan Vlaso, Ruy Jose (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#685 (May, 2018) - Jim Zub, Mark Waid, Al Ewing (writers), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Avengers VI#686 (May, 2018) - Jim Zub, Mark Waid, Al Ewing (writers), Paco Medina (pencils), Juan Vlasco (inks), Tom Brevoort (editor)


First Posted: 11/09/2018
Last updated: 11/09/2018

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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