- "From the heights of these pyramids, forty centuries look down on us."
– Napoleon Bonaparte
The Pyramids are one of the best early wonders in the game. An additional charge for Builders this early on is somewhat of a game-changer, as it increases a single unit's effectiveness by 33% - you can do more while spending fewer resources on units! The extra Builder unit is also handy, as it makes up for the lost time dedicated to building the wonder. Of course, you need a Desert tile to construct it.
The Pyramids have good synergy with the Serfdom Policy Card, which provides newly trained Builders with 2 additional charges. By combining this wonder with this card, it is possible to have Builders with twice the standard number of charges. Qin Shi Huang enjoys even greater benefits from this combo, which will provide his Builders with an unparalleled 7 charges. In the expansions, a city in which Liang is established can produce Builders with 8 charges when playing as Qin Shi Huang and 7 charges when playing as any other civilization and leader.
The Pyramids can also be useful when playing as Montezuma's Aztecs. After declaring war with your Eagle Warriors and successfully capturing a city full of luxury resources, your Builders can repair or build the tile improvements that give you access to them. A successful battle will make your people happy while bringing you closer to winning a Domination Victory.
Though pyramids were built from the beginning of the Old Kingdom to the close of the Ptolemaic dynasty, the really big heaps of stone along the Nile were piled up commencing in the late third dynasty and continuing through the sixth (roughly 500 years). The Great Pyramid of Giza that is virtually synonymous with the “glory” of ancient Egypt went up around 2560 BC to serve as the tomb of Pharaoh Khufu (who is unremarkable for anything else save the length of his reign). It is considered one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Built by tens of thousands of workers, including skilled masons, and covered with “casing stones” (slabs of polished limestone), the Pyramids of Giza were a testament to Egypt’s power and the natives’ conviction of the afterlife – at least for the elite. To date, some 135 pyramids have been found in what was once the greatest empire in the world.