Robot Review: Carbide (S09E05)

Carbide! The nuclear T-Rex of the Robot Wars world, having come so close last season only for its own weaponry to stab it in the back, is back and looking for blood. Specifically Apollo’s blood, but blood nonetheless. Carbide is probably the most feared robot in the entire competition, having shown the kind of damage it can cause throughout the 8th wars. Well now the robot is even scarier than before, with a solid bar spinner capable of reaching tip speeds of 250mph, and causing unrelenting damage. It’s faster than last series, it’s more powerful and it looks even better. Can anybody defeat them?

Well to test out just how good Carbide were, they had an initial melee to get through, consisting of Meggamouse, Crackers N Smash and Trolley Rage. With a mix of flippers, axes and spinners, it was an interesting field of robots to come up against.

Carbide decided its first target was going to be Trolley Rage, and with one hit managed to cave in the front right corner of the robot. Carbide’s spinner gets up to speed scarily fast now, so even box rushing them might not help. They then went after the larger of the clusterbots, Smash, and ripped the front wedge of the robot part of the way off. So far, so destructive. Next up is Charles the cheese wedge, which is utterly ruined by Carbide. They then go back to Trolley Rage, and hit the exact same spot again, and this time it’s all too much for the robot. I’m amazed they stood up to the first hit.

The clusterbots seem to be next on the menu, first Smash and then Crackers, which makes a better pyro display too, but they seem to be made of strong stuff. Stronger than Trolley Rage anyway. Meggamouse they tries to get involved, trying but failing to flip Carbide. As they recover, Carbide come in again, bounce of Crackers and get Meggamouse’s wheel with a direct hit! That sends it flying across the arena in pieces, and sends Meggamouse out!

Job well and truly done.

Now, what sort of start to the Head to Heads would we have if we couldn’t see Carbide take on the one reason they didn’t win the 8th wars, Apollo? Revenge is calling.

The fight started off fairly even with Carbide on the attack, Apollo able to somewhat deflect their blows by getting in underneath them and tilting the weapon out of the way. But, when Apollo went in for a flip on Carbide and missed, that opened up an opportunity. With Apollo recovering, Carbide launched another round of attacks, this time tearing off one of Apollo’s top panels. With Apollo going haywire, Carbide continued to strike, eventually hitting them in such a position that the flipper arms bent completely out of shape.

Carbide v Apollo
Bending the arm

And then Apollo died, completely.

Not content with just having defeated their arch nemesis, Carbide continue to land blow after blow, dealing more and more damage with each hit. By the time cease is called, Apollo is nothing but a wreck.

The momentum is with Carbide, but they cannot relent now. They have to once again take on the clusterbots, Crackers N Smash, who proved tricky opponents for them in their opening melee, so this was not an easy fight.

And things, once again, don’t start easy for Carbide. Crackers uses its little wedge to get in underneath Carbide and almost beach them, but for Smash getting involved too. Whilst Carbide is tilted on the edge of Crackers, Smash gets a glorious face full of bar spinner, which cannot have done it any good, because Smash backtracks onto the floor flipper where it is tossed over.

Face full of bar spinner
Face full of bar spinner

Whilst Smash tried to turn the tables by activating the pit release, Carbide is happy to keep on attacking both robots, namely Crackers because he makes the best light show. But, despite Carbide being well on top, both clusterbots are holding firm. That is until Smash comes across the face of Carbide as it turns, catching the robot with the spinner and sending it flying into the arena wall at the speed of light, breaking an entire wall panel.

Cease is called for repairs, but it doesn’t matter. Crackers N Smash have thrown in the towel anyway, not wanting to risk any further damage. Carbide are marching towards that heat final.

But, despite their place being all but secured, there’s one last Head to Head fight to take part in, against bottom place Coyote. It should be a fairly straightforward victory for such a dominant robot, but anything could happen.

Carbide’s first attack on Coyote landed right in the middle of the jaws, which had as much of an effect on Carbide as it did on Coyote, sending Carbide flying through the air. It was possibly the biggest bite back Carbide had sustained all episode.

Bite back
Bite back

But Carbide would not be deterred, and came back with another attack in exactly the same place, which this time sent Coyote into the path of Sir Killalot, giving Carbide some time to recover. Once that was over with, Carbide were right back at it, hitting Coyote on the side, tearing out the side panel. It’s a swift end to Coyote after this with Carbide not only dealing further blows to the side, but also caving in the jaw so that it’s now very much bent out of shape.

With 9 points out of 9, Carbide look unbeatable, and are rightly in the heat final. But before they can get into the promised land of the Grand Final, they have one more fight, against that robot again. Apollo have been in there way all the way, but now they have the chance to turn the tables once and for all.

Much like the first battle between them, Carbide found themselves riding up Apollo’s flipper early on, and it was unbalancing them, but no flip came. And all the while, they were still doing damage to Apollo with the bar spinner, if only slight. For it to really work though, they would have to go around the back or side of Apollo, and avoid the flipper.

Or would they?

They kept chipping away at Apollo, landing blows wherever they could, until they came face to face and, without riding up the flipper this time, Carbide delivered an unbelievable onslaught that not only ripped the flipper to shreds, but took Apollo out altogether.

It was a crushing, and absolute, victory. Whilst the house robots went and had their fun with Apollo, Carbide could bask in the glory of a heat victory and a place in the Grand Final. And, well, we all know what happened after that.

So, how did Carbide do? Well, I don’t think it could have been any better for them. They were relentless, unstoppable and destructive to the extreme. Nobody could stand in their way as they tore through competitor after competitor. I’m not sure if there’s ever been a more destructive robot than Carbide on this series. There’s a reason I chose them as this blog’s cover picture, and it is everything to do with how incredible they are.

I don’t really need to do this section, do I?

Robot Rating (Carbide): 10/10

Full Robot Review rankings from this series and the last series can be found here: )
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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