Robot Wars S09E01 Part 3: (After)Shock and Awe

I made the same joke in the title last series with Shockwave because I’m so creative.


So, two head to head battles remain, and the league standings couldn’t be more wide open. We’re in the situation that it’s possible for 3 robots to finish on 6 points, with only 2 places up for grabs. If Terrorhurtz beat Aftershock and Sabretooth beat Jellyfish (All by KO), then all but the Jelly will be on 6 points, having beaten one rival but not the other. Alternatively, if Aftershock beat Terrorhurtz and Jellyfish beat Sabretooth (Again, by KO), then all but Aftershock, who’ll be clear on 9 points, will be on 3 points and contesting just the one slot. Again, all will have beaten one rival but not the other. It’s interesting to think what would happen in that situation. 3 way knockout to determine who goes through?

Head to Head 5: Terrorhurtz v Aftershock

So here’s the first of the crunch matches. If Aftershock win, then they’re though guaranteed top of the ladder. Anything else and it gets a little bit more complicated. For Terrorhurtz, it might not make a difference if they win or lose, depending on how the other battle goes. It’s that close. Of course, Aftershock are the favourite. How can they not be? Terrorhurtz got KOed by Sabretooth and Aftershock are currently unbeaten. Still, weirder things have happened in the arena.

Your house robots for this 1v1 are Sir Killalot and Shunt. Back to how things were then, it seems. Off we go!

Terrorhurtz, as always, are very quick to get going. They’ve made a slight modification to the robot too, sticking one of Jellyfish’s large googly eyes to the front of their robot. Not sure it’ll help, and now Terrorhurtz looks creepy. Aftershock are somewhat more considered in their approach, and it pays off, with them landing the first blow and tearing pieces out of Terrorhurtz’ rear end. It’s nothing vital, so Terrorhurtz escape, only to be confronted with a head on attack. Now that one is explosive.

Detonate.png
Detonate

But all this fighting is taking place precariously close to Shunt’s CPZ, and he can’t help but wander over. Terrorhurtz, using their front wedge, push Aftershock into Shunt, who traps them against the area side wall and starts trying to lay some pain. I think Shunt is the one getting some pain though, because Aftershock’s weapon is grinding away at the front scoop. So Shunt lets them go. Now Terrorhurtz and Aftershock are involved in something of a pushing contest, and Aftershock are winning, slowly pushing Terrorhurtz back until they are sitting on the floor flipper. THz seem to realise and get out of there, but the flipper activates and, coupled with a blow by Aftershock, Terrorhurtz are sent into orbit! And when they come crashing back down, the axe system is well and truly destroyed. It’s hanging off.

The moment Terrorhurtz flew.png
The moment that Terrorhurtz flew

Oh, and the googly eye fell off too. That’s probably the most disappointing part.

So Terrorhurtz are now running away, with the axe loosely wobbling around and completely non functional. Aftershock on the other hand are perfectly fine, and chasing after them. But Terrorhurtz are not out of this, and are a very well driven robot, and they manage to lure Aftershock onto the arena spikes, which burst out of the ground and turn Aftershock over. But Aftershock, as has already been shown, can self right using their spinning disc. And so they do. Cue Terrorhurtz continually driving round and round the arena spikes in the hope Aftershock will make the same mistake twice. Don’t really think that’s going to happen.

Eventually they do come back head to head, but Terrorhurtz’ front armour stands up well to the attacks, as was expected before the fight. It’s just a shame now that the entire weapons system is completely ruined. But eventually there’s one hit too many, and Terrorhurtz are flung onto their back, where they can no longer self right. 3 points to Aftershock who are through, now Terrorhurtz has to pin all its hopes on Jellyfish to even stand a chance of getting through.

Beached Robot.png
Beached Robot

Head to Head 6: Sabretooth v Jellyfish

So this is what it all comes down to. A win for Sabretooth puts them in the final, but a win for Jellyfish could make things interesting, as I said earlier, but only if they win by KO. If it goes to a judges’ decision, then only Terrorhurtz and Sabretooth would be on 3 points, and Sabretooth would go through by virtue of having beat THz earlier on. But that’s for after the fight is over. Up to the beginning of the fight, we didn’t even know if Sabretooth would get out into the arena, such was the state of the robot after the battle with Aftershock. But after spinning the drum up in the test zone, they’re going to make it! I just don’t know how long they’ll last once they’re actually in the arena.

Your house robots are the intimidating Sir Killalot and the menacing Matilda! So for one last time before the heat finale, let’s get the battle underway!

In robot terms, this is something of two extremes of the scale. Sabretooth is rather compact, whereas Jellyfish is this massive wide structure, which is actually so wide that it practically swallows Sabretooth whole. That or its giving the robot a great big cuddle. I’m undecided so far. For Sabretooth at least, the drum is spinning, it’s just they can’t really seem to do anything with it. They keep running into Jellyfish, and then either get caught on them or just simply bounce off- neither of which are ideal.

This is becoming something of a tussle. Now Jellyfish don’t have much in the way of weaponry, instead aiming to grab their opponents, but that isn’t helping with the wiry Sabretooth, who keep getting away from them. At one point they even go cowboy and jump over Jellyfish altogether.

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Rodeo

The fight eventually moves on to around the pit area, which is awkward for both robots because the pit still isn’t sitting flush with the rest of the arena, and so- especially for such a low robot like Jellyfish- it’s rather easy to get stuck. Oh, and there’s also the bombshell that Jellyfish’s steering might have been backwards this entire time. I suppose that’s still better than no steering at all.

Sabretooth are still running, but eventually their compact size comes back to haunt them, because Jellyfish catch them side on and manage to clamp them in its jaw. Now Sabretooth really are being given a hug by the Jellyfish. And now Jellyfish can take them wherever they want.

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Got u

After Jellyfish start driving them around a bit (I’m not sure how much of the control they actually had), Sabretooth break free, but the consequence of breaking free is that they bounce over the robot and get the wheel tangled on the little ropey bit attached to the back end of Jellyfish. Or it might have been one of the back poles. Either way, they’ve gone from being clamped to being snagged. And now neither robot can really move, not until Killalot comes over and frees Sabretooth.

But now Jellyfish have a problem- i.e. the pit. I told you before that it doesn’t sit level, and now Jellyfish are genuinely stuck on it. The front end is just too low for it to clear the lip of the pit. Sabretooth are having their own problems with the pit, namely the drum getting caught on the edge and sending them bouncing around everywhere. There’s also one final snag where Sabretooth get caught on Jellyfish AGAIN, but that’s all there’s time for. The klaxon sounds and we are going to the judges.

It’s a difficult decision this one. Jellyfish did no damage, but then Sabretooth didn’t do much either. Both were aggressive in their own ways. You could say Jellyfish probably had more control by clamping Sabretooth. It’s a tough one. It also doesn’t matter because Sabretooth are going through regardless now, but there’s still a decision to make. A split decision at that. And the winner, by 2 to 1, is…

JELLYFISH!

Jellyfish came into the head to heads late and got one banged by Terrorhurtz, but they can now come away and say they have a victory on Robot Wars. Not bad for a robot made out of plastic.

Heat Final: Aftershock v Sabretooth

This is it, the first grand finale of the series. Aftershock have ripped the competition to shreds so far, and that includes Sabretooth. But that doesn’t mean they’re guaranteed to make it a clean sweep. Will they prevail, or will Sabretooth get their revenge? It’s time to find out! Your house robots for one last time this week are Shunt and Sir Killalot. Kind of become used to them being the pairing in this episode, I have to say. Let’s get this heat final underway!

We’ll ignore the fact that Sabretooth pretty much jumped the gun, and focus on the fact that, despite the bettering they were given last time, they still have the balls to go head on and straight for Aftershock. Aftershock respond in kind by kung fu kicking them half way across the arena with their first hit.

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HADOUKEN

Now we all know Sabretooth weren’t 100% going into this fight anyway. But, well, that first hit from Aftershock seems to have done rather a lot more damage to the machine, at least for the moment. Basically, Sabretooth are going in circles, and drive straight into Sir Killalot, who gladly picks them up and roasts them over the fire for a bit. As soon as they’re put back down again, Aftershock comes in and causes some more damage.

Now Sabretooth are pretty much dead anyway. They’re not moving freely and one of the wheels is jammed. I think it might be game over. Killalot comes over again anyway and picks them up, twirls them about and then throws them across the arena, as we so love watching him do. But now it is clear to see that Sabretooth are done. They move ever so slightly, so Aftershock give them one last hit, but that’s enough. I think Sabretooth have suffered enough for one episode.

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Final Blow

Aftershock though, worthy winners. Completely dismantled everyone who dare challenge them, and single-handedly took Rapid out of the contest. I don’t know who’s going to be joining them in the week 6 finale, but whoever it is should watch out. I think Aftershock could go all the way.

Episode 2 airs 7pm Sunday 12th March on BBC 2. There are even more frightening robots ready to do battle, so don’t miss it. I’ll be back soon to kick off Robot Review 2.0 with a new scoring system and the works. But until then, Robot Wars is well and truly back with a bang.

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