The Prime Mover was a robot built by Doctor Doom and designed to serve as a gamesman. In the games the Prime Mover plays, real people are often pitted against robot facsimiles. In the Prime mover's first known game, it manipulated Nick Fury and his agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. into a conflict with Doctor Doom, who employed robotic duplicates of the Yellow Claw and his niece Suswan. The Prime Mover won the game when Fury destroyed the Yellow Claw robot, surprising Fury, who thought he had been facing the real Yellow Claw. The real Yellow Claw was annoyed at having been impersonated, but he never learned who was responsible, nor did Fury ever learn who his true foe had been.
After going for months without a game from Doom, the Prime Mover journeyed to outer space, where it found the cosmic gamesman the Grandmaster, and the two engaged in a game. The Grandmaster employed members of the Defenders, while the Prime Mover used the 30th Century cyborg Korvac and the extraterrestrial mercenaries the Minions of Menace. The Prime Mover had wagered the Earth, intending to prove its superiority to humanity, and they pitted their forces against each other on three different worlds. The Prime Mover believed that it was simply a contest of power, and had chosen its contestant accordingly, predicting victory, but the Defenders won 2 of the 3 games, and the Prime Mover broke down, unable to cope with its defeat. Grandmaster lost his claim to Earth when Daredevil tricked him into a rigged coin toss.
Doom retrieved the Prime Mover and rebuilt it for another game, in which they made a pawn of Shang-Chi, who served as the Prime Movers "piece," along with his friends Clive Reston, Black Jack Tarr, and Leiko Wu from MI-6. Doom doused Shang-Chi with hallucinogenic gas and pitted him against robotic versions of his enemies, including Pavane, Razor-Fist, Shadow-Stalker, Shaka Kharn, Shockwave, members of the Si-Fan, and duplicates of robots his enemy Mordillo had employed, all to see if Shang-Chi could correctly identify each as a robot and withstand the drug's effects. Although Shang seemingly confronted Doom and the Prime Mover in person, the Doom he encountered was a robot duplicate, and the Prime Mover turned out to be Clive Reston encased within a hollow shell. Because Doom had brought Shang into the conflict with his own friend, he declared himself the victor, much to the Prime Mover's annoyance.