Robot Review: Heavy Metal (S09E03)

Heavy Metal was the rock and roll robot of the 9th wars, and had good pedigree too, coming from the same team that previously gave us 13 Black. A vibrantly coloured blue and purple lightning rod, Heavy Metal is a wedgebot that contains a rear rotating arm, that itself can be replaced by several different components. Whilst the wheels are heavily exposed and rather large, they each contain several little rubber studs for greater traction across the arena floor. That coupled with a low ground clearance and a top speed of up to 15mph could see them become quite a force.

For their initial melee, they had to overcome a few tough competitors. M.R Speed Squared could potentially cause them the most problems thanks to their exposed wheels, whilst Expulsion too could inflict similar damage. There was also Foxic, who were a pusher/lifter that could annoy Heavy Metal, especially with it high top speed.

Heavy Metal’s first real foray into the battle was up against Expulsion, pushing the struggling robot across the floor and into the floor spikes and Sir Killalot, before getting the hell out of there. To be perfectly honest, Heavy Metal were something of a peripheral figure in the melee, hanging back as much as they could. The rotating arm was being about as useful as a chocolate teapot, so not very much at all.

Then they got lucky, because one of their wheels seized up, and the robot started spinning in circles, but because Expulsion and Foxic were already immobile, they were safe. They weren’t safe from M.R Speed Squared launching one final attack, slicing into one of the wheels and knocking the rotating arm out of alignment.


So here we are in the Head to Heads, and the first fight is against M.R Speed Squared, and gives them a chance to get some revenge for that late damage that was caused.

With a rotating arm that isn’t really working, Heavy Metal go for the tactic of becoming a wedgebot and just ramming their opponents to see what happens. What happens is that M.R Speed Squared go for a spin through the air, and manage to break their weapon in the process. Now Heavy Metal have an advantage.

And so they use their advantage, getting in underneath their opponent and diving them into walls left, right and centre. There are also trips into the pit release button and onto the floor flipper. They are in total command, powered on by the cheering of John Denny and the crew. It’s like a self sustaining power source of motivation and celebration. And they’re getting more and more into it.

Eventually, they completely overpower M.R Speed Squared, cornering them by the pit. With everything in place, they charge, taking M.R Speed Squared in and out of the fight… Even if they went in with them.

Pitted.png
Pitted

So 3 points and a good start for Heavy Metal. But now their next fight is against Concussion, who have just taken down favourites Thor to get 3 points in their first tie. So it’s a drum spinner vs. the wedgebot, but once again those exposed wheels could be a problem.

But at first, Heavy Metal seemed to be doing fairly well to stand up to the drum, using the front part of the wedge to absorb the blows. One blow though was hard enough to spin the robot over, and that gave Concussion full power in the fight. With Heavy Metal stricken next to the low section of the arena wall, Concussion come in for the kill. They drive straight at the wheel, hit it with the drum, and take it clean off! Not only that, but the wheel goes straight out of the arena!

One on, one off.png
One on, one off

That’s the fight.


So now Heavy Metal are in a little bit of a trickier situation, because 3 points is all well and good, but not quite good enough. So now they’re going up against Thor, who also have 3 points, for a straight shootout for the final spot in the heat final.

Unfortunately for Heavy Metal, with Thor’s low scoop now bolted on, they go straight over the top of the robot, which means that their previous tactic no longer works. Not only that, but Heavy Metal is shedding rubber studs all over the arena floor, and that isn’t helping them for traction. It’s probably giving the arena cleanup guys palpitations too.

Heavy Metal continues to skid around the arena, but Heavy Metal seems to be keeping out of trouble for the most part… That is until Thor gets back at them and finally manages to bring the axe down on something vital. With Heavy Metal trapped in the corner with Thor and barely mobile, it’s not looking good. But hey, the rotating arm is actually moving this time. Not very quickly, but it’s moving.

The battle progresses over to Matilda’s CPZ, where Heavy Metal are screwed over by the arena spikes, which flip them up onto Matilda’s flywheel. Matilda has a good few goes at Heavy Metal, but the rock band robot manages to deflect them quite well. Thor comes back to join the party, and now Heavy Metal has a gang of two on it, both of which move in at the same time, and off comes the wheel again! AGAIN.

Again
Aaaaand it happened again

Just about sums up the end to Heavy Metal’s time at Robot Wars. No wheel, no mobility and they’re counted out. It started so well, but this is now the end of Heavy Metal’s journey.


So, how did Heavy Metal do? Well, they managed to get through a tough opening melee, by mainly staying out of the way of everyone, but then comprehensively defeated M.R Speed Squared to take their first H2H points. However, those troublesome wheels came back to haunt them not once but twice, against both Concussion and Thor, which in the end eliminated them from the contest. It was a cool design, and I liked it, but it just couldn’t go that extra step.

Expectation v Result (Out in Rd1-3rd): +3
Beat the melee… Just: +4
Expert use of the pit vs. M.R Speed Squared: +6
EXPOSED WHEELS: -8
And the fact one of those wheels went out of the arena: -2
Rubber studs that fly off everywhere: -2
BONUS: Rock N Roll: +3
BONUS: John Denny Jr. keeping the face mask on whilst being interviewed: +2.5

Robot Review (Heavy Metal): 6.5/10

Full Robot Review rankings from this series and the last series can be found here:
https://robotwars2016.wordpress.com/robot-review-rankings/ )
Each review rating is hyperlinked to the article about that robot- simply click on the robot’s name to be navigated to their article.

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