The Elders of the Universe possess nearly infinite amounts of power, and with it, they do as they wish without fear of reprisal. Their endeavors brought them to Earth several times where they pit one or more super-powered individuals against each other for their own amusement. The Grandmaster is the most notorious of the Elders to do this – making wagers with other beings at the expense of those he deems less significant than himself. Such was the case when Grandmaster and the Collector decided to play a game where the losing group would forfeit their very lives. The Grandmaster chose to begin with the Hulk and allowed him to choose his teammates, so Hulk chose the original Defenders: Silver Surfer, Namor and Doctor Strange. The Collector began with the Hulk's newest nemesis, the Red Hulk, and he chose Baron Mordo, Terrax and Tiger Shark to be his Offenders.