Robot Wars S07E07 Part 3: Nuclear Power

I’m currently trying not to die in the mini heatwave, currently being experienced in the UK, whilst I write this. Bear with me and I hope that I won’t die.


So, after S.M.I.D.S.Y. got past a stubborn Mean Streak by pinning them against the wall on their side, the second spot in the heat final is now up for grabs. In one corner we have Hellbent, a lifter/axe combo that pretty much dominated their melee, putting both weapons to good use and making sure to be able to withstand anybody else’s attack. In the other corner is Atomic, a scoop based flipper that was one of the leading contenders in their melee along with the seeded S.M.I.D.S.Y., and even enjoyed a nice tussle with them at the end.

Both robots look good, both robots were impressive early on. But only one robot can progress into the heat final.

Shunt and Matilda make up your pair of prowling house robots. It’s time to get the fight underway!

Atomic are the first robot to make a move, trying to get in round the side of Hellbent and flip them over, but their flip misses. In doing so, they leave themselves vulnerable to a counter attack, which Hellbent goes for, but their lifting spikes weren’t strong enough to take advantage. So after the opening play, neither robot has an advantage.

Atomic seem a lot more desperate to get a flip in than Hellbent, firing off the flipper several times without effect as the two robots begin to circle each other, looking for an opening. But then, with the robots lined up head to head, Hellbent charges straight into Atomic’s flipper. Atomic, with the lower ground clearance, is able to scoop up Hellbent and toss them into the air! Hellbent actually fly backwards over Atomic, but land on their wheels, ready to continue the fight.

Full Frontal.png
Full frontal assault

Hellbent are shaken, and Atomic are looking to capitalise on that. We know now that, at least at the front, Atomic have the advantage when it comes to ground clearance, so a Hellbent attack there does very little, and they’re too far away to use the axe. What it does do is allow Atomic to deflect the drive, then scoop Hellbent up whilst it’s sideways, push it all the way over the edge of the arena…

… And then toss them out completely. Just like that, the battle is over.

Demise
Hell bent on its own demise

Atomic, the very powerful, very impressive robot that it is, they’re going through into the heat final.


So here were are, it the Heat G final between two very good lifter/flipper robots. It seems, after the brief interlude with Tornado and X-Terminator that the flippers are well and truly back at the forefront, although I suppose S.M.I.D.S.Y. is more of a rambot than a flipper. It is the 13th seed though, which gives it an inherent advantage for no other reason than because I said it does.

Atomic, on the other hand, look very, very deadly. If S.M.I.D.S.Y. aren’t careful, they might just find themselves out of the arena about 15 seconds in. It doesn’t make Atomic invulnerable to attack- the only invulnerable robot in the whole show is Sir Killalot, and even then he still sometimes loses his head. Atomic could probably blind everyone with their paint scheme before they even need to use their flipper, but it still comes in handy. Are Atomic favourites? I’d say so.

Your house robots are Dead Metal and Growler. The jaws and claws of pain and suffering. To battle!

Both robots seem to start out slightly nervously, drifting in and around each other, but nobody fully committing to an attack. Atomic especially are getting more erratic, driving into the arena side wall on their way to an attack stance. S.M.I.D.S.Y. actually get the first attack in, getting to the side of Atomic and starting to push them, but Atomic are very quick to turn, and instantly pull the situation in their favour, getting round  S.M.I.D.S.Y.’s side and flipping them over onto their back, via a nice little break-dance.

Hazardous
Hazardous

S.M.I.D.S.Y. backs into Atomic as retaliation, landing a hit with their disc. But Atomic’s scoop is heavy armour, and the disc does little in the way of real damage.  S.M.I.D.S.Y. are invertible of course, but it’s a bit of a pain for them now because they’re the way up that means the jaw is useless for getting underneath and pushing or lifting. They try to rectify this by driving straight up Atomic’s scoop, but despite a lovely little pirouette, they remain the wrong way up.

Not to worry though, Atomic don’t give up easily. They come back at S.M.I.D.S.Y., and in one motion drive underneath and flip them over. If this fight doesn’t work for them,  S.M.I.D.S.Y. should look for a job in acrobatics. And, they’re now also the right way up again.

Acrobatics 2
Acrobatics

And now the driving is back to being how it was when the fight first started. It is nervous, erratic somewhat. Neither robot able to get a grip on their life. S.M.I.D.S.Y. tries to drive into Atomic with the disc, but it backfires, with Atomic again managing to turn the situation around. The flip though, doesn’t do much to S.M.I.D.S.Y. this time except put them off balance. As S.M.I.D.S.Y. tries to recover, Atomic manage to get round the side, and get in underneath properly.

You know what’s coming next. Oh yes! S.M.I.D.S.Y. is going out of the arena!

The 13th seeds, they’re gone. Unlucky for some? Unlucky for S.M.I.D.S.Y.


So we have another robot joining the legion of flippers in the series semi-final. Atomic are well worth their place, and it’ll be interesting to see how they match up against everyone else. I’ll be back at some point with Heat H, when the weather isn’t trying to kill me, but until then…

Robot Wars S07E07 Part 2: Ending The Streak

After two rather entertaining battles that made up the initial melees, Heat G is really starting to come together. Seeds S.M.I.D.S.Y. have managed to get their way into the second round, along with Atomic, Hellbent and Mean Streak. But, of course, this is the point at which we take a break from all that and go to our special event, which this time is a World Championship Qualifier.

This battle is actually Ireland v South Africa, which makes it sound more like a rugby matchup than anything. In the corner for South Africa we have everybody’s favourite crab bot, Crushtacean. Crushtacean is of course novel because of the way the weapons are controlled. The two crushing crab claws are controlled by a set of motion gloves- if the gloves are closed, the claws close too. As for the actual robot, Crushtacean is a silver dome, which can run both ways up on a 2 wheel drive system, but has a rather large ground clearance in doing so. The robot is fast at 20mph. Can it crush its way to victory?

For The Republic of Ireland we have Topbot, which is something strikingly different to Crushtacean. A yellow and red art exhibition, Topbot can’t quite escape looking like a cheese grater. It has a rather hefty looking flywheel that weighs 30kg, so 30% of the entire robot. It is also invertible, with 4 wheels on both sides of the robot. I don’t know exactly how fast that flywheels spins at, but it looks like it could cause some real damage if it connected with something. Frightening. World’s deadliest cheese grater.

Your house robots for this intercontinental showdown are Sgt. Bash and Mr Psycho. What a line-up. Let’s get down to the fight!

Crushtacean is fastest out of the starting gate, going straight for Topbot and grasping them between the claws with enough purchase to shove them into the CPZ corner, where Topbot can’t really do anything. Eventually, Topbot do manage to escape the crab’s grasp. But as the battle unfolds, Topbot cant’ really seem to get any real contact on a slippery Crushtacean. But, likewise, Crushtacean aren’t really doing anything now. And Topbot’s disc has started getting up to speed.

Now, I don’t know if Topbot was being controlled with a potato, but apparently they thought it was a good idea to drive the robot straight into the arena side wall. Now I said the disc looked hefty, and it is hefty enough to actually smash the side wall into a few pieces. Crushtacean cleans up quite nicely, grasping hold of Topbot and pushing them away from the wreck zone.

The wall
The wall

Crushtacean continues to push Topbot around like a trolley through a supermarket, before pushing them into a different section of the arena side wall. This time it doesn’t break, fortunately. But regardless, Crushtacean are well on top.

Crushtacean’s next move is to manoeuvre Topbot into the pit release button… Eventually. Infact they more take the pit release button apart than just press it, such is the problems with the way the thing is constructed. Now Crushtacean has just one aim, and that is to get Topbot down the pit. And so they push them, slowly, until they’re right on the edge. With one final push, Topbot go falling into the great chasm that is the pit. And so, they are out.

Pit push
Pit push

Crushtacean are flying the flag for South Africa all the way into the 3rd World Championship.


Back to the main event.

We know that Hellbent, Atomic, Mean Streak and S.M.I.D.S.Y. have made it through, and the first second round matchup sees the seeded S.M.I.D.S.Y. come up against Mean Streak. It’s the wedge lifter versus the dual spinner. Which one will come out on top? Will the seeds survive?

Your house robots are unchanged from the last fight, with Mr Psycho and Sgt. Bash retaining their place in the CPZs, looking for trouble. Let’s begin!

Both robots charge head on at each other, but as S.M.I.D.S.Y. have the low wedge with zero ground clearance, they can get underneath Mean Streak, which sails over the top of them. Mean Streak land a couple of hit with the disc in retaliation, but it does minimal damage to S.M.I.D.S.Y., although it does produce some nice sparks for effect. The two robots are similarly shaped, so when they both try to reach around each other to make contact with their weapons, they just end up going round and round in circles with each other.

Round and round and round
Round and round and round

When they finally separate, S.M.I.D.S.Y. start pushing Mean Streak around, trying to get them into a compromising position, but Mean Streak are fighting back, as much as they can. But they’re not doing any of the aggression themselves. Eventually S.M.I.D.S.Y. lets them go, but only when they are in the vicinity of Sgt. Bash. Bash is waiting to pounce, and is almost able to snatch S.M.I.D.S.Y. first. But soon They find Mean Streak in their CPZ, under siege by S.M.I.D.S.Y.

Sgt. Bash take a few bites at Mean Streak, before S.M.I.D.S.Y. comes along and takes them away, once again pushing them across the arena floor. This time they end up in the opposite CPZ, where Mr Psycho is on hand to deliver one hell of a hammer blow to Mean Streak, who are quick to get out of there as quick as possible.

Psycho
Psycho

But, in trying to get away from Mr Psycho, Mean Streak end up over the pit as S.M.I.D.S.Y. hit the button. It’s a close thing, but they do manage to get themselves away just in time. This allows S.M.I.D.S.Y. to come back in and push them over the CO2 jet, whilst Bash comes in for a bit of fun too. S.M.I.D.S.Y. start to lift Mean Streak, which is now in real trouble.

And S.M.I.D.S.Y., channelling all the might of its machine, uses the lifting scoop and slowly, slowly begins to tip mean streak over. It’s agonising, and at one point it looks like they’ve lost their grip. But then, with one almighty shove, Mean Streak are on their side against the arena side wall, and immobile.

Refbot comes in and starts to count them down, ending the Mean Streak. The counter hits 10 and they are officially counted out, leaving Mr Psycho to the cleanup job. The claw goes right through Mean Streak as Psycho hoists them up, then dumps them back down onto the floor flipper to watch them fly- and they almost bounce all the way out of the arena.

Well, if Mean Streak were going to go, at least they went out with some flair. S.M.I.D.S.Y. are through.


So now we know the first of our heat finalists, with the 13th seed S.M.I.D.S.Y. going through. But who will join them, Hellbent or Atomic? Find out next time…

Robot Wars S07E07 Part 1: Going Down

I’ve never gone through more than 6 episodes of a series (Thanks BBC), but with the 7th wars we can delve even further with Heat G. I liked having the heats denoted by letters, maybe they should look at bringing that back for the new series(?) We’ve been through some great episodes so far, and some great robots too. With heat winners like M2, Gravity and The Grim Reaper doing it for the legion of flippers, reigning champions Tornado and vertical spinner X-Terminator have brought things back for the rest of the pack. This time around we have 13th seeds S.M.I.D.S.Y., Cygnus X-1, Atomic, Terror Turtle, Hellbent, I Bot One Beta (What a name), Mean Streak and Araknia. Even with S.M.I.D.S.Y. being seeds, the heat looks wide open for just about anyone to take. Except Terror Turtle, because Terror Turtle was never going to win, was it?


Our first melee concerns the 13th seeds S.M.I.D.S.Y. (Awkward name is awkward), Atomic, Cygnus X-1 and Terror Turtle. Sounds like an intergalactic nuclear war is about to commence.

Let’s start with the seeded robot, S.M.I.D.S.Y., an acronym for “Sorry Mate, I Didn’t See You”. Despite being seeded 13th, this robot has a record of never having made it out of the heats, which is maybe more of an indication as to how messed up the 7th wars seeding was. I’m quite glad it got scrapped for the newer series. The robot itself is almost a classing box wedge robot, with its 4 wheel, box chassis sporting a thin wedge at the front to get underneath opponents. The wedge doubles as a lifting mechanism, but history has told us S.M.I.D.S.Y. doesn’t tend to rely on it, preferring instead to use brute force a la Tornado. There’s also a small disc at the back that nobody cares about.

Next we have Atomic, a robot making its return having sat out the 6th wars. Playing on its name with the hazardous nuclear labels and bright yellow and red paintwork, Atomic’s main weaponry is a lifting scoop, which has a wide berth to capture robots and then tip them over. It’s not a fully fledged flipper, but it is definitely effective. It’s now slow either at 12mph. Can they cause an upset?

Thirdly we have Cygnus X-1, which sounds like it could be an intergalactic space craft. It looks like one too with its sleek, silver paint job. A full pressure flipper, Cygnus X-1 is kind of like the step up from S.M.I.D.S.Y. and Atomic in terms of weaponry, but that doesn’t mean it will be more effective. More still, the shape of Cygnus means that it very well could be flipped over in such a way that the robot comes to rest on its side, where the flipper wouldn’t be able to self right it.

Finally we have Terror Turtle. It’s a robot shaped like a turtle, if you hadn’t guessed. It has a 9kg spinning disc as a weapon, but it can only move at a speed of 5mph and, even though it is invertible, the wheels are heavily exposed and the entire thing is made of fibreglass. Safe to say it isn’t favourite for the heat.

Your house robots for this battle are Dead Metal and Shunt. Ah, the good old days. Let the robot party begin!

The fight started really as everyone on Terror Turtle, with both S.M.I.D.S.Y. and Atomic both going for them. Atomic got there first, got in behind the robot (Which couldn’t get away because it has the speed of an actual turtle), and flipped them over. Terror Turtle is invertible, fine, but to be flipped so early on is an ominous sign.

Flames.png
In the midst of the flames

Terror Turtle, in trying to get away from Atomic, drives into Cygnus, which itself is just aimlessly driving around away from the action. S.M.I.D.S.Y. comes in with a follow up attack, but it just ends up pushing the turtle away. S.M.I.D.S.Y. leave the turtle for a moment to concentrate on Cygnus, mentally pushing them backwards towards the arena side wall, where Atomic comes in with a sucker punch and flips Cygnus against the side wall and the angle grinder. Cygnus is now on its side, and it can’t self right.

Everyone has now piled into that corner. S.M.I.D.S.Y. actually uses the disc to do minimal damage to Atomic, but it creates some nice sparks. Terror Turtle is pushing its luck by joining the action, but it might as well try whilst it can.

Car crash
Car crash

Cygnus is pretty much done if it can’t right itself, and right now the chances of it righting itself without outside help is practically zero. Meanwhile, Terror Turtle are about to pay the price for their foray into the action, as S.M.I.D.S.Y. push them towards the arena side wall before Atomic steal in, get underneath, and take them out of the arena altogether! Terror Turtle has now gone from endangered, to extinct.

Now, S.M.I.D.S.Y. and Atomic could just leave it there and go through, but S.M.I.D.S.Y. decide to start pushing Cygnus towards a different part of the arena side wall, and Atomic follows in behind… And flips S.M.I.D.S.Y.! They bounce off the wall but just about stop themselves from going over, but now they’re beached too. Shunt joins in, because the house robots need some representation, and has a go at Atomic. When that fails, they move onto S.M.I.D.S.Y., which has just freed itself, and land a blow right on the top of the machine.

Refbot finally comes in, amongst the madness, and starts to count down Cygnus. The end is in sight for this melee. Cygnus is trying its last tricks, but the flipper just isn’t powerful enough to get them back over. Whether it isn’t high enough pressure, they’ve run out of gas or whatever else it could be, it just isn’t happening. Cygnus will join Terror Turtle out of the competition. Meanwhile, Atomic and S.M.I.D.S.Y. are still going at it. There’s no need, but they do it anyway.

Countdown to the end
Countdown to the end

So Cygnus are out, Atomic and S.M.I.D.S.Y. through. But in their tussle, S.M.I.D.S.Y. have stopped moving altogether, and Atomic gladly push them over the pit, hit the button, and watch them descend into their doom…

Still through though.

Cygnus, poor Cygnus, are then pushed onto the drop zone, which unleashes the power of a falling TV onto them. The TV came off worse.


So, second melee. Can it live up to the action of the first melee? Well to see if they can step up to the plate, we have I Bot One Beta, Hellbent, Mean Streak and Araknia. This one sounds more like a horror dungeon than futuristic nuclear war, but it still has some fun and creepily named robots.

First to enter the arena is Araknia. It’s probably no surprise to learn that the robot is based off a spider. Not in the shape of the robot itself, but by having a giant spider painted onto the bodywork. It’s invertible, which is always useful, and runs on just a two wheel drive system featuring slightly exposed wheels. The weapon is a spinning bar on the front of the robot, which contains rare earth magnets at the tips to try and shred the armour of opponents. The armour is a combination of Carbon Fibre and fibreglass, which probably isn’t the most confidence inspiring material that could have been chosen. That, and it weighs just 77kg.

Next we have Mean Streak, which itself seems to be built like a blue and white rock. A bulky, smooth box shaped robot, Mean Streak is armed with a pair of small flywheels which spin at 3000rpm, whilst the robot itself is invertible and can run at a top speed of 15mph. The discs have titanium cutting teeth to try and tear through an opponent’s armour, but the flywheels are perhaps a little small. Only time will tell if they’re up for the job.

Thirdly we have Hellbent, the first axe of the episode! Looking like it had grave digging at 6 and Robot Wars at 8, Hellbent turns the spooky up to 110%. It’s probably the decorative skull that does that. A cut-off box wedge design that makes it a little quirky, Hellbent has two lifting spikes at the front of the robot, and of course that silver, shiny axe mounted on top. It looks mean, but the team are inexperienced and this is the first time the robot has seen proper action.

Finally we have I Bot One Beta. I don’t know what possessed them to come up with that name, but I can already tell I don’t have the patience to continually keep writing it out every few lines. The robot comes from Germany, which means I’m going to continually compare it to Tsunami. Doesn’t read well for IBOB in that case. Still, the robot has two 10kg bar spinners on either end as weapons, going at 3000rpm, which could be menacing to the other robots out there. It’s also invertible, as are 2/3 other robots here.

Your house robots are OG Sir Killalot and Psycho’s psycho pet dog, Growler. A nasty duo if ever there were one.

Everyone is tentative to start, but Hellbent land the first blow by turning Mean Streak over. However, with Hellbent being the only robot there not invertible and also the only robot with a lifting weapon, they might find success here somewhat limited. So instead the go in with the axe, but it ends up in Mean Streak’s wheel housing.

Everyone takes this as an opportunity to jump on everyone else. Araknia are now spinning around because their weapon isn’t actually doing anything yet, and IBOB are just in there for a laugh. Hellbent, continuing their pursuit, finally manage to land a solid blow on Mean Streak, which is then attacked by Araknia. Damage is done by Araknia, finally putting the weapon to use.

Strike One
Strike One

Hellbent leave Mean Streak and instead go chasing after Araknia, catching up when the spider runs into Refbot and then launching a hammer blow with the axe, which practically caves in Araknia’s top armour panel. Hellbent go in again and again and again, merciless in their destruction of Araknia. They then get underneath and flip them over- although Araknia should be invertible, in reality the weapon is actually pushing them off the floor, and they can’t get any traction with the wheels. IBOB meanwhile has all but disappeared back to Germany, it’s so out of the fight.

Whilst Hellbent chase down IBOB, Mean Streak is taking its revenge against Araknia, using the flywheels to put deep scores into the spider’s armour. Araknia this time can’t do much to retaliate, although they have at least found the ability to drive again. Over in the other corner, Hellbent land a good blow on IBOB, and push them all the way into the arena side wall. That seems to kill the robot, which is somewhat unfortunate given they hadn’t actually done anything in the fight as of yet.

Sir Killalot starts to play around with IBOB, whilst Hellbent goes back in on Mean Streak, but struggles to hit anything other than the wheel housing again. Araknia then drive into Hellbent, the result of which is the entire top armour panel (Though it’s on the bottom now because they’re upside down) spontaneously falling off. Not good whichever way you look at it.

Spilling your guts
Spilling your guts

As it stands, IBOB is being counted out, Araknia has half a robot left and Hellbent has been utterly dominant. Mean Streak has survived more by virtue of not being made of cardboard. That hasn’t stopped Hellbent putting holes into them, but they have at least survived. Araknia… Well they’re now over a flame jet, and kinda on fire. Chargrilled spider anyone?

It was at this point my YouTube crashed, so let’s leave it there. We already know who’s through.


Atomic and Hellbent both dominated their melees, whilst S.M.I.D.S.Y. and Mean Streak tagged along for the ride. We’ll see them back in the second part to this, but until then…

Robot Wars S07E06 Part 3: X-Terminated

We’re getting close to the final showdown of this heat, with X-Terminator already confirmed to be in the heat final after putting Killer Carrot 2 through a blender. But who will join them? Tsunami, the German flipper that’s already put two out of the arena in just one fight, or Constrictor, which managed to avoid any major problems on the way to a judges’ decision victory in their heat opener.

We have the two great heavyweights of the house robot world in the arena with them, Sir Killalot and Mr Psycho! Ready to cause some chaos and destruction of their own.

As the fight starts, both robots are happy to try and go after each other. Constrictor makes the first move but misses, and this gives Tsunami the opportunity to slide in underneath Constrictor before flipping them over. Constrictor kind of stands on the back of the robot, but falls back onto its wheels. They try to go for Tsunami, but they can’t get underneath and instead ride up Tsunami themselves and that leaves them vulnerable to even more attacks.

Ride Up.png
Ride up

Tsunami are somewhat relentless, not giving Constrictor any time to recover before launching their next attack. That random panel has come off Constrictor, again, not that I think it was actually ever useful for anything. Constrictor are also upside down and trying to get back the right way up, but the crusher/lifter isn’t powerful enough to do that, and so they’re stuck upside down.

It should be said that constrictor could run upside down, but they’re still trying to get back onto their other side. It isn’t helping them, and soon Tsunami take full control. They get in behind Constrictor and push them all the way across the arena with the large scoop flipper, before tossing them through the air and out!

That’s 3 competitors Tsunami have sent flying out of the arena!

Over the fence
Over the fence

So after what was a less than impressive performance from Constrictor, Tsunami are riding the wave through into the heat final, which will see them match up again with X-Terminator, the only robot they’ve faced that they haven’t thrown out of the arena. X-Terminator of course are looking to live up to their seeding by going through to the series semi-finals.

Sir Killalot returns to lead the house robots, with Growler there as company. It’s time to let the heat final commence!

Now Tsunami, of course, want to a) avoid the spinning disc of X-Terminator and b) get in around the side so that they can get a flip in on them. But X-Terminator have once again started off at something of a more steady pace, and are carefully watching and waiting as Tsunami zips around. This, as you can guess, is rather frustrating for Tsunami. And eventually, X-Terminator’s approach pays off, as they’re able to get in round the back of Tsunami and get some hits in with the disc.

Back Scratcher
Back Scratcher

Tsunami escape, but X-Terminator are on the prowl. With Tsunami being forced ever backwards with the prospect of coming into contact with that disc again, they need to find an offensive of their own. And so they take the only step they can, and drive themselves underneath X-terminator at such an angle that they avoid the disc.

And then they flip them.

X-Terminator is a really awkward shape. I mean I described it before, but it’s rather tall and blocky in stature. So when it goes over, it looks incredibly awkward. This robot was not built to be flipped. Not only that, but it hits the floor disc first, which sends it skating across the floor until it skids to a halt infront of the pit release button. Strike one for Tsunami.

Now, X-Terminator don’t quite look like they’re going to be able to self-right, which means Tsunami could just leave them there and take their place in the series semi-finals. But this is Tsunami, a robot that has flipped literally everyone else they’ve faced out of the arena, so of course they’re going to try and get X-Terminator out too. It’s just… Awkward shape strikes again, but this time in X-Terminator’s favour. Tsunami’s first flip can’t send them over- they pretty much ride the arena side wall and then fall onto their side.

Side Standing
Side standing

Tsunami seem tentative about coming in again, knowing that they could just leave them there and they’d probably be safe. But the temptation to try and flip them out is just too much. They shouldn’t have, they really shouldn’t have, but they did anyway. And far from going out of the arena, this time they manage to get X-Terminator back onto their wheels, and back into the fight.

X-Terminator now have an opportunity, and they’re going to take it, instantly chasing down Tsunami and hitting them side on, which rolls Tsunami onto its back. X-Terminator come in again, and Tsunami are now rolling around like a bowling ball. They do eventually roll back onto their wheels, but they’re rattled. X-Terminator on the other hand look relentless.

There’s a brief lull as everyone regains their bearings. Tsunami are backing off again, and look tentative with using their flipper. But when X-Terminator hit them and turn them over again, they have no choice but to use it to right themselves. X-Terminator waste no time in launching another attack, this time head on, and connect so well with the disc that it tears a chunk out of Tsunami’s flipper. Tsunami do try to flip X-Terminator, but in the end they just end up flipping themselves over.

Moving in
Moving in for the kill

X-Terminator are having fun with Tsunami now. Tsunami are wasting all of their CO2 trying to right themselves, only for X-Terminator to hit them right afterwards, which sends them rolling back. At one point Tsunami self right onto X-Terminator’s disc, which doesn’t help. And slowly but surely, the gas is running out. Tsunami have dug themselves a hole, and now they get to sleep in it.

Things are starting to get so bad for Tsunami that they’ve caught fire internally, and with each additional hit by X-Terminator a new body panel falls off. They are practically finished in this fight, and all that’s left is to give them a violent send off. And, well, what would be a better send off than to send Tsunami the same way they sent everyone else. With one final charge, X-Terminator punts Tsunami over the edge, and out of the arena.

A fitting end to Tsunami, but an end that could have been oh so different if they themselves hadn’t attempted to flip X-Terminator out of the arena and instead just left them to be counted out. But, that’s Robot Wars. You live and die by your decisions in the arena.


So, that’s Heat F. What was once a flipper paradise is starting to fade away, with a vertical spinner in X-Terminator taking its semi-final place among the others that have already made it through. Next we move on to Heat G, and even more chaos and destruction.

Until then…

Robot Wars S07E06 Part 2: Axe Attack

We already know our four robots that have made it through to the second round of fighting; X-Terminator (11), Tsunami, Constrictor and Killer Carrot 2. But, as always with these things, we now take a well deserved break from the main action to have a special event. This time around it is the turn of those robots who like to bash, smash and puncture. Yes, Heat F’s special event is an axe wielding fight to the death. At least, it is in principle.

First up is Iron-Awe, technically Iron-Awe 2.1. A yellow menace, Iron Awe has both an axe and a flipper that fire within a tenth of a second, making it double trouble for anybody that comes across it. The first Iron-Awe entered back in the 4th Wars, but things have changed since then and now they’re looking to put this new and improved version into the warzone, and come out with total victory.

Next we have Kat 3, which isn’t a stranger to Robot Wars either, having started competing back in the 5th wars. Not only does it have a striking orange and black paint job, but a rather deadly looking spiked axe that can strike up to 50 times in a fight, whilst the combination of the front wedge and low ground clearance make it less liable to attack by flipper.

Finally we have Hydra (Hail Hydra). This is another robot that contains not just an axe but a flipper, meaning it has two ways of taking the battle to the opposition. The flipper is actually more of a lifting arm, and is actually the main weapon of the robot with the axe being a new addition. We’ve already seen Hydra in Heat D where it was mercilessly used as a cannonball by Dutch robot Gravity. At least this time there is slightly less chance of that happening.

It wouldn’t be an axe attack if Shunt wasn’t present for the House Robots, and he is joined by everyone’s least favourite house robot, Cassius Chrome. Good old Cassius Chrome.

Whilst the battle starts out as a 3 way mess, Hydra are the first to try and actual attack on Iron Awe, but it is somewhat unsuccessful. From then on, it turns into a mangled mess of all 3 robots firing their axes at every possible moment, with pretty much every attack missing its mark, although Hydra seemed to be at least having some luck wrestling with Iron Awe. Kat 3 on the other hand were pretty much going nowhere with their attacks. They do have a brief moment with Cassius Chrome, so it’s not like they’ve done absolutely nothing.

Hydra and Iron Awe meanwhile are still going at it, and Iron Awe look to be coming off second best. Their axe seems to be somewhat stuck downwards and the top panel of armour is looking rather loose. But they’re still being aggressive, and Hydra aren’t having it all their own way.

Charge.png
Charge

Infact Iron Awe are having problems everywhere, with the flipper panel now having been bent upwards in such a way that they can’t get themselves underneath Hydra at all to get a flip in. But at least they’re not Kat 3, who have seemingly given up entirely. Well, the robot has anyway. This leaves them easy targets for both other robots, but as Iron Awe make their attack, Hydra come in and manage to tip Iron Awe onto its side! It doesn’t last, but Hydra are now in full control and slam Iron Awe into the arena side wall, leaving them briefly for Shunt to have a go. Iron Awe do manage to escape though.

With both Hydra and Iron Awe still mobile, the fight is nowhere near done. And yet, both robots still see fit to go after the already immobile Kat 3. I suppose that’s a little rest for Iron Awe, who are then once again set upon by Hydra and even Shunt. Kat 3, meanwhile, are being counted out. This brings in the house robots, and Iron Awe take that as an opportunity to start on Cassius Chrome, whilst Hydra start tangling with Shunt. Shunt gives it as good as he gets, until… Hydra tip Shunt over!

Tangle
Tip

Hydra are loving it, and then decide to take over from Iron Awe and attack Cassius Chrome, slamming them against the arena side wall. They then continue the assault on Iron Awe, before Iron Awe actually gets one of Cassius Chrome’s spikes stuck in them. Which is inconvenient. Even when they eventually get free, Cassius Chrome still go at them.

Refbot meanwhile has decided this fight needs some spicing up, and goes to hit the pit release button. It is at that exact moment that Hydra, keeping their distance, drive straight over the pit. And so it descends with Hydra trapped, and the robot that looked so much like it was running away with this… They’re gone. Iron Awe have won.

Well shit.


After that wild west axe fight, we’re now back to the main event, and that means the first of our second round one on one fixtures. First up is the seeded X-Terminator and Killer Carrot 2. The vertical spinner meets a carrot shaped flipper in the fight to get to the heat final.

Dead Metal makes his first appearance of the night, along with the ever present Sir Killalot. Let’s get round 2 underway!

X-Terminator are slow to begin, but when Killer Carrot try to attack, they actually ride up X-Terminator and can’t get the flip in. It becomes a push and shove contest, and although X-Terminator are doing most of the pushing, they still somehow manage to end up in the claws of Sir Killalot. Eventually they are let free, but again they’re slow. It doesn’t matter though, because Killer Carrot are doing all the work for them, and this time drive straight into X-Terminator’s disc, which flips them over.

Overturned Carrot
Overturned Carrot

That disc takes no prisoners, especially against Killer Carrot. Small pieces of armour are torn off and the disc is bent out of shape. X-Terminator then go in again and turn Killer Carrot back onto their wheels, allowing them to run away and escape. To Killer Carrot’s credit, they don’t stop fighting, but they’re coming off worse and worse with each attack. The flipper is now a mangled mess.

Eventually, Killer Carrot are rolled onto their back, and they can’t get themselves over onto their wheels. It’s not happening. Doesn’t stop X-Terminator from coming in and taking even more pieces off them. Weight saving at its peak. But then X-Terminator hit them back onto their wheels… AGAIN.

Killer Carrot decide to use this new found opportunity and activate the pit release, because that’s the only way they’re actually going to win this fight, unless X-Terminator spontaneously combust. X-Terminator respond to this by calmly driving over, lining up Killer Carrot, and then swiftly hitting them so hard with the disc that they fly straight over the arena side wall.

Killer Carrot are no more.

Out with the veg
Out with the veg

So, now we know that X-Terminator are going through to the heat final, and would be favourites to go through. But who will be joining them, Constrictor or Tsunami? That’s for the next article to find out. Until then…

Robot Wars S07E06 Part 1: There Be Robots, They Be Fighting

 

I’m back and making my triumphant return to writing about the wonder that was the 7th wars of Robot Wars. I know this has always been a filler whilst we wait for the new series to air, but it’s good fun all the same. And, whilst most of the 7th wars has been a haven for flippers, Tornado changed that around in the last episode by going on and winning themselves, increasing their chances of retaining their UK Championship crown. This episode, Heat F, sees a whole host of competitors looking to join them, including 11th seeds X-Terminator, who have changed their weapon configuration once again. They are joined by the likes of Tsunami, Killer Carrot 2, Major Tom, Diabolus, Fluffy, Scary-Go-Round and Constrictor. Some wonderful names- and wonderful robots- in that group. Killer Carrot, what a name.

Let’s kick off the actual fighting, with the first melee, containing X-Terminator (11), Tsunami, Major Tom 3 and Diabolus.

First up is X-Terminator, a robot that changes its configuration almost as many times as it enters the warzone. Fed up of having an axe that didn’t do as much damage as they would have wanted it to, the powers at the helm of the robot have swapped it out for a small vertical disc that weighed 14kg and span at 1,500rpm to give it a lot more bite and hopefully a lot more destruction. It also now sports a set of cone shaped horns on the side, for aesthetics (Well, and self-righting), something to combat the plethora of flippers it could potentially come up against *Cough* Tsunami *Cough*. They’re seeded 11th, but in the warzone that means nothing. Might fuel their sunglasses clad egos though.

Next up is Tsunami, which is pronounced how you would expect and not how it was actually pronounced when it entered the arena. A 99kg boulder of a robot, Tsunami comes from Germany, where it finished runner up in German Robot Wars. Not satisfied with that result, here they are looking to give it a go in the big time and go one further. They might have a good chance too, because not only is the 7th wars flipper haven, Tsunami’s flipper is rather powerful and the robot can go at 30mph. That’s faster than most drivers over the age of 75 will ever get to.

Thirdly we have Major Tom, technically Major Tom 3. The ever lovable, patriotic robot has never enjoyed much success, only ever going as far as the second round in the heats on two occasions, and going out in round one in the 6th wars. It looks less like a funfair dodgem now, and it no longer goes like one either with a top speed of just 4mph, but does supposedly have much greater pushing power. Also, exposed head.

Finally we have Diabolus, the second robot in this fight to come from The Isle of Sheppey after Major Tom. A new robot, Diabolus is a pain to spell correctly and even more of a pain to come up against in the arena, if the 1000rpm dual spinning discs are anything to go by. As well as some rather nasty looking weaponry, it can also run either way up and has Aluminium checker-plate armour to protect it. *Only* weighs 94kg, which could make it susceptible to big flips from the likes of Tsunami.

Anyway, enough with the introductions. The house robots for this battle are the battle hardened Sgt. Bash and the equally tough bulldozer of Shunt. We’re ready to get things underway!

Straight away Diabolus make a charge at Major Tom, slamming into the side of them and taking off the head. I didn’t know 3 second decapitations were a thing in Robot Wars but apparently they are now. Fortunately for Major Tom the decapitation is purely superficial. Diabolus, having struck gold with Major Tom, next attack Tsunami, who are less of an easy target and retaliate by tossing Diabolus over.

Meanwhile X-Terminator has picked up the slack on Major Tom, actually managing to turn them over before leaving them for Diabolus. Diabolus charge, then connect with X-Terminator and off comes one of the discs!

No disc no party.png
No disc, no party

There’s a lot of chopping and changing with regards to which robot is going after which, but nobody is ever left alone for long. With X-Terminator having now relieved Diabolus of one of its weapons, Tsunami have been busy taking Major Tom- which let’s face it couldn’t run away if it wanted to- over to the arena side wall, where Tsunami’s powerful flipper is put to good use, and Major Tom is flung out of the arena!

The Isle of Sheppey are starting to crumble, because not only is Major Tom no longer with us, but Diabolus are in really bad shape too, thanks to X-Terminator’s powerful disc and Diabolus’ not so capable armour. With Diabolus sitting on the arena side wall with the top armour panel hanging loose, Tsunami are once again called in to wash them away, and soon Diabolus are left chilling with Major Tom… Out of the arena.

Line them up
Line them up, watch them fall

After all is said and done, X-Terminator and Tsunami are going through!


With that battle sorted, we now move onto the rest of the challengers for this heat. They are Scary-Go-Round (Puns, puns everywhere), Killer Carrot 2, Constrictor and Fluffy. Spinners and flippers, what more could you want.

First we have Constrictor, a robot that has an innovative look to it. With space age silver coloured armour and not only possessing the ability to self-right itself but run both ways up in the first place, Constrictor looks ready to take on anything. Throw in a weapon that can perform not one but two tasks, as either a flipper or a crusher (Or should that be constrictor?), then they look like they stand a good chance of making it through the initial melee. But this is Robot Wars, and nothing is straightforward.

One of the robots they’ll have to beat is Fluffy, which is in no way, shape or form actually fluffy. At its heart, Fluffy is a ruthless robot killing machine that takes no mercy, but also has its own problems with reliability that means it can’t often get 100% efficiency out of its fights. Think Fernando Alonso in the McLaren Honda- great driver, but the car never finishes a race. Fluffy has a vicious bar spinner which can get up to 1500rpm, enough to put a dent in anybody’s hopes, and will hope to use it to full effect this time around.

Next we have Killer Carrot 2, which… well… Killer Carrot. A flipper by nature, it has a paint scheme which leaves you in no doubt about how it got its name. Great if you need to see it in the dark, but not something that’s going to make it any more deadly. Not the fastest at 8mph, but I don’t think you wanted to be on the end of the flipper if you could help it. The Killer Carrot may not actually be a killer, but it’s still a battle hardened war bot.

Finally we have Scarey-Go-Round, a full body spinner designed to look like a fairground carousel. I don’t think I really need to say any more than that.

Your house robots for this battle are Sir Killalot and Sgt. Bash, who I’m pretty sure hasn’t actually moved an inch since the start of melee 1. Hasn’t needed to.

The battle starts with Constrictor and Killer Carrot going at each other, then proceeding to give each other a hug. Well, I’m sure that wasn’t their intention, but with both robots trying and failing to flip each other, it ended up looking more like a hug. Meanwhile Scarey-Go-Round already have several holes in the side of their robot thanks to the wonder that is Fluffy. Start as you mean to go on and all that.

Not so Scarey
Not so Scarey-Go-Round

Killer Carrot and Constrictor are still locked together in some kind of awkward dance, despite a random panel from Constrictor falling off. They must both be having a great time out there, which can’t be said for Scarey-Go-Round, who is now going round in circles after yet more torment at the hands of Fluffy. However, Fluffy, as a result of exerting itself so much in tearing apart Scarey-Go-Round have now pretty much burnt themselves out. The large volume of white smoke is testament to that as they also spin on the spot.

The true McLaren Honda of Robot Wars.

Up In Smoke
Up In Smoke

Killer Carrot are now going after everyone, with varying degrees of success. Mostly on the lower end of the scale though, seeing as they can’t actually seem to flip anybody over outright. Scarey-Go-Round are still going in circles whilst Fluffy have practically given up altogether, and accepted their fate as Sgt. Bash’s chew toy. Killer Carrot then activate the pit, and Fluffy come back to life! No working weapon though.

Scarey-Go-Round, who were still vaguely moving, are now not moving having trapped themselves on the flame pit. Whilst they’re burning, the clock is counting down, and with everyone technically still mobile, we’re off to the judges!

. . .

Killer Carrot 2 and Constrictor are going through!

Whilst Fluffy dealt a lot of early damage, the fact the robot pretty much killed itself half way through means that this was probably the right decision. I just hope Killer Carrot doesn’t try to hug one of either X-Terminator or Tsunami, because it’ll likely not end well.

But there we have it. X-Terminator, Tsunami, Killer Carrot 2 and Constrictor are your 4 robots making it through to the second round. Soon we’ll see how they get on, but until then…