Robot Review: Ms Nightshade (S09E05)

Ms Nightshade is one of those robots that can only be described as weird and wonderful. It is massive, standing at 1 metre tall, and is pretty much a giant spinning cone. However, each side of the robot contains a ‘petal’ with a blunt or sharp point, which can extend down, acting like a hammer on an opposing robot. With all the petals extended, Ms Nightshade becomes 2 metres wide. Equally, with the petals spread out, Ms Nightshade can become a full body spinner, with the petals acting like the teeth on a disc.

Among the most vibrant of its features, Ms Nightshade claims to be impossible to flip and could also use the petals to climb out of the pit. Yeah…

To see just what the robot was actually like, Ms Nightshade was placed in a heat with defending champions Apollo, another flipper in the form of Rusty, and the crushing jaws of Coyote. So there’s plenty of opportunity to test out the ‘cannot be flipped’ theory.

Instantly, as the battle started, Ms Nightshade was targeted by Coyote, who came across looking to do something with them. I’m not sure what it was, but they certainly couldn’t clamp down, there wasn’t anywhere on Ms Nightshade for them to do that. For Ms Nightshade, however, Coyote was blocking one of the petals from coming down. The rest were thrashing about nicely, though not really doing much.

But whilst those two were having fun fighting each other, Apollo had just finished an attack on Rusty and decided to come over to them. They then got in underneath Ms Nightshade and promptly flipped them over onto their side, in the process crushing one of the open petals. So much for ‘cannot be flipped’.

Flip Flop.PNG
Flip flop

Now on its side, Ms Nightshade is pretty much just flapping about, firing off the petals at random intervals in some kind of interpretive dance. It’s not ever going to self right the robot, they’re just not powerful or strong enough. So Ms Nightshade are counted out, but at least they can be entertaining whilst on their side, that’s something.

Apollo then hit the pit release button, but instead get Rogue house robots, releasing Dead Metal into the warzone. Naturally, with Ms Nightshade stranded, they were the target, and Dead Metal went for them. Ironically it was only then that the petals served any real purpose, because Dead Metal actually got a claw stuck on one, leading it to drag Ms Nightshade back to its CPZ like a predator having caught its food for the evening. And that way it stayed until the end of the fight. Ms Nightshade were eliminated.


So, how did Ms Nightshade do? Well, I never had much hope of them getting through the melee, even if they weren’t against Apollo, but it’s such a funky robot to look at. I love how different it is from everything around it, and I just wish it could have been a bit more competitive. Because, in the end, it was never going to be competitive in this field of robots.

Expectation v Result (Out in Rd1-Out in Rd1): 0
Wacky, weird and elegant design: +1.5
“Cannot be flipped”… Is flipped: -2
Dead Metal magnet:  +1
BONUS: The colour purple: +1

Robot Rating (Ms Nightshade): 1.5/10

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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