|Battlebots by E.C. Ostermeyer
When sparks fly, robots die!
This is the Battlebots report for Tuesday, 2 January 2001. I'm your recapper, ol' E.C.
We are live on tape from the All American Sport Park in Las Vegas, NV.
Battlebots is sponsored by the United States Army.
Hey, Saddam! We let our KIDS build these things FOR FUN! Remember that the next time you get grabby!
Your hosts are Sean Salisbury and Bil (no extra "L", please!) Dwyer.
Floor reporters are Randy & Jason Sklar, along with Heidi Mark, who's a whole lot prettier in person. Bill Nye "the Science Guy" adds some "techno-spice" to the mixture.
First up is a second round heavyweight match-up between Stephen Felk's nasty-looking Voltronic, and the last UK 'Bot in the tournament, Ian & Joe Watts' Bigger Brother.
Felk has upgraded Voltronic from Season 1.0, adding three sharpened steel fangs to the lifting arm. Bigger Brother, fresh off it's trashing of the Tilford Family's Mauler 5150, has still got the CO2-powered flipper system that's capable of overturning any opponent.
Biopic of the UK's eight-year-old Joe Watts, who introduces us to his siblings, Mum, Dad, and, of course, Bigger Brother.
The 'Bot is shown trashing several inanimate objects, including what appears to be an old push-mower.
Joe uses protective headphones "for when we do something really loud!"
Joe also abides by Mum's most important rule of all:
"Robots aren't allowed in the house!"
As we leave Joe Watts, we get a parting shot of Bigger Brother eyeing the neighbor's Morris Minor as a possible target.
Match #1: Voltronic v. Bigger Brother, (2nd round Heavyweight Division bout.)
Voltronic nearly gets flipped by Bigger Brother's initial charge, but manages to avoid the rush. It hooks Bigger Brother's skirting with a sharpened steel tooth, and then drags his opponent over the KillSaws. Bigger Brother's Lexan skirting takes some serious damage, as Voltronic holds his opponent on the KillSaws for the full 30 seconds before releasing. Bigger Brother escapes, then rams Voltronic a couple of times. We get a camera shot from behind Stephen Felk, as he adds some "body english" to his steering. Bigger Brother nearly steers Voltronic into a pulveriser hazard, but Felk breaks Voltronic loose, and the 'Bot scuttles out of danger. The two keep circling each other, looking for an opening. It appears that Bigger Brother's primary weapon system, the lifter arm, is out of commission. Voltronic tries to charge in, but runs over the KillSaws in the process. Voltronic presses the attack, hooks Bigger Brother once again with those sharpened teeth, and shoves it's opponent into a pulveriser. Bigger Brother gets hammered, then escapes. Voltronic, in rounding on it's foe, also gets a hammer shot from the pulveriser. Another hook by Voltronic, who then rams Bigger Brother into the Spike Strip hazards, upending it.
Bigger Brother, having "turned turtle," is trying to flip itself back over using it's lifting arm. Voltronic stops this attempt by clamping down on Bigger Brother, and pinning it against the arena wall, as time runs out.
Voltronic scored 6 hit points, 3 lift points, and a whopping 10 hazard points.
Bigger brother scored 4 hit points, 0 lift points, and 5 hazard points.
The judges at ringside score it a 43 to 12 decision for the winner, Voltronic. (3:00)
Post-match, Heidi Mark is talking with Voltronic's designer, Stephen Felk.
"That was a tough match!" says Heidi.
"My philosophy is that I just keep goin' at 'em," says Felk. "However, there's a lot of dirt on the floor, so I'm not getting real good traction."
"Somebody call the maid," says Heidi.
Our next bout is from the somewhat sparse Middleweight Division, and features a new 'Bot from Canada's Derek Young, of "Pressure Drop" fame. The 'Bot is named, appropriately enough, Complete Control. It wields a pneumatic lifting fork, and a mechanical grabbing arm that is supposed to grab onto and then flip it's opponents.
Said opponent for this match is the Robot Action League's be-foliaged MultiBot, Super ChiaBot. Though it's original had no weapon other than it's plant life, this model uses an electrically-powered cutting disc. It also uses two tethered mini-bots to add to the confusion and mayhem.
Match #2: Super Chia Bot v. Complete Control. (1st Round matchup, Middleweight Division.)
Super Chia Bot gets a KillSaw whack at the start of the match, but shakes it off. Complete Control tries a ramming attack, but runs afoul of the two minibots. This allows Super Chia Bot to get in a rasping saw cut on Complete Control's rear drive housing. Complete Control responds by rounding on it's opponent, and nearly upending Super Chia Bot with it's pneumatic lifter. A head-on collision between the two allows Complete Control to finally clamp Super Chia Bot in it's lifting claw, and lift it high off the arena floor. An attempt to flip Super Chia Bot over misses, as the 'Bot's not top-heavy enough to pull that off. Super Chia Bot gets dragged over the KillSaws again, and then gets lifted high in the air once more by Complete Control.
Whoops, Complete Control loses complete control when Super Chia Bot's extra weight tips the two 'Bots onto their backs. Complete Control's trying to right itself using it's lifter arm, but one of Super Chia Bot's mini-bots is jammed under it's rear skirting, and won't allow Complete Control to right itself. After about 15 seconds of this , the referee calls time out to allow the two combatants to be separated.
Once this is done, the match resumes, much to the delight of the fans at ringside. It appears that Super Chia Bot's saw isn't working, probably due to that last toppling it took. Complete Control clamps onto Super Chia Bot once again, and body slams it onto the KillSaws for some more hazard damage points as the buzzer sounds, ending the match.
Complete Control scored 7 hit points, 5 lift points and 4 hazard points. Super Chia Bot scored 2 hit points, 0 lift points, and 2 hazard points.
The judges score it a 38 to 7 decision for your winner, Complete Control (3:00)
Post-match, Randy & Jason Sklar interview Complete Control's designer, Derek Young.
"I was worried when it tipped over," says Young, "but luckily, they stopped the bout and got us going again."
Heidi Mark, in talking with Super Chia Bot's owners, Team Robot Action League, says that the last bout resembled a WWF match.
Again, you are admonished not to construct or operate a robot or Battlebot without "proper" supervision.
"Terrorizing your neighborhood pets" falls into this category.
Cats are exempt, however.
Next up is a slamfest featuring the reigning Battlebot Super Heavyweight Champ, Minion, against Team Half Life's 'Bot built specifically as a "Minion-Killer", Robert Everhart's Atomic Wedgie. Everhart got his design idea from the bomb disposal 'Bot his local police department uses. Of course, his 'Bot's got extra trimmings, such as a nasty looking scoop wedge, and two side-mounted, spinning tri-foils tipped with tungsten steel teeth.
Team CoolRobots' Minion still features it's signature fireman's emergency saw, but this year's model has a new Lexan scoop wedge, and larger drive motors.
Pre-fight, Randy & Jason Sklar are with Christian Carlberg, who gives us the low-down on how he's going to beat Atomic Wedgie.
"I'm gonna slam him," says Carlberg, "then beat him up, and then I'm gonna cut him in half!"
Match #3: Minion v. Atomic Wedgie (1st round Super Heavyweight bout.)
Mark Beiro introduces the principals.
On Minion: "There's no denying, the devastation he's supplying!"
On Atomic Wedgie: "This 'Bot will jerk your chassis up between your linear actuator abruptly, and with great force!"
"The box is locked, the lights are on...
It's robot fightin' time!" says Sean Salisbury.
They've got the Battlebots SlamCam on Minion this go-round, and we get a 'Bot's eye view of the arena and Atomic Wedgie. Initial ramming by both 'Bots yields nothing either way. Minion tries a ramming attack from the right rear quarter, but gets it's Lexan scoop wedge ripped off by one of Atomic Wedgie's tungsten steel-tipped spinning trefoils.
Minion tries another run, but Atomic Wedgie meets it head-on, and Minion nearly goes airborne. The two 'Bots scuttle back and forth for a bit. Then, Atomic Wedgie sees an opening, charges in, and rams Minion into the arena wall, flipping it over! Salisbury can't believe what he's seeing, and neither can most of the fans at ringside. Atomic Wedgie gets in three more hits with the trefoils before Minion gets counted out, ending the match.
We get a SlamCam view of Minion being upended by Atomic Wedgie.
Atomic Wedgie scored 7 hit points, 2 hazard points and that 1 all-important lift point that ended the match.
Minion got in 4 hit points and 2 hazard points before going down to defeat.
In a huge upset, your winner by knockout, Atomic Wedgie (1:07).
Post-match, Christian Carlberg says that he tried to out-drive Atomic Wedgie, and ran right into the wall, which caused the flip.
Heidi's with Richard Everhart and the rest of Team Half-Life. "You beat Minion your first time in Battlebots! How does it feel?"
"It feels great!" says Everhart. "We designed Atomic Wedgie specifically to beat Minion, and the design worked! We want to e the king!"
Our final match of the evening brings us Robert Pitzer's fugitive from Jurassic Park, and the pride of Team Raptor, Tripulta Raptor. This 'Bot is a nasty stainless steel Super Heavyweight monster armed with hydraulics-driven crushing jaws.
It's opponent, Toro, sports a front lifting arm with a difference: it's lifter mechanism fires with such a powerful burst that it can literally flip it's opponent over with one shot.
Bill Nye discusses this new technology with Toro's builder, Reason Bradley of Sausalito, CA. "Our basic strategy is to flip over everything that gets in our way." says Bradley.
"What happens if YOU get flipped over?" asks Nye.
"Our forklift arm will be able to right the 'Bot with no trouble," says Bradley.
Match #4: Tripulta Raptor v. Toro, (1st round Super Heavyweight bout).
Neither 'Bot makes what could be called a charge into combat, with Tripulta Raptor moving very deliberately towards it's opponent. Toro, trying to steer clear of it's opponent's crushing jaws, nearly upends itself with a miss-timed firing of it's front lifter. As Tripulta Raptor tries for a sideways grab, it runs over Toro's lifter, and promptly gets upended! Quite a feat considering that these are Super Heavyweight Battlebots, weighing upwards of 300 lbs. and more.)
Tripulta Raptor tries futilely to right itself, and nearly does so when Toro almost flips it back over by ramming it into the SpikeStrips. However, the match ends with Tripulta Raptor getting the "Eight Count O' Doom."
Toro scores 2 hit points and 1 all-important lift point to win the match by a knockout! (0:57)
Hit of the Week is Toro upending Tripulta Raptor
Next week, the destruction continues!
See you then.
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