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That's right. BattleBots is coming back to TV. The new series premiere will be this Sunday at 9:00 PM Eastern on ABC.
I used to love this show when I was in high school and it was on Comedy Central. Ever since I'd heard of the hobby of robot combat back when it was first starting out, I fell in love with it and dreamed of one day competing. But I was just a child back then. I was a smart enough kid that I at least felt like I could (I'd even made designs for a few), but I was a high-schooler with no job back then. Now I'm a working adult, but I'm still not sure what it would cost to build one.
Anyway, here's ABC's BattleBots page. I don't have time to look at the page myself right now since I'm about to go out to dinner, but I at least want to get the conversation started. From the picture there, I see Nightmare's weapon looks a bit different now.
Never watch this, but I heard it was like Robot Wars, which I loved when it was on.
I remember hearing something about this, glad I noticed something to remind me so I can try to catch it.
One of my biggest nostalgic memories from these robot fighting series was a fight where one combatant utterly wrecks the other one, and while their opponent is disabled (but not actually having lost yet) decides to take a victory lap around the ring - only to fall into an arena trap and lose. The actual fall was even a long enough drawn out moment for how badly they screwed up to sink in before the end.
It's still my quintessential example of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.
Oddly enough, though in retrospect it must have been Robot Wars (Battlebots didn't ever have pit traps, did it?) I could swear it was the Battlebots arena even after realizing that.
edited 20th Jun '15 12:59:54 AM by KnownUnknown
Nope, Battlebots never had pit traps.
So, here's the cast;
I think it's funny that Faruq's profile is calling this "the new hit summer series Battle Bots" even though it hasn't aired a single episode yet. Not that I'd doubt it if it did, but that might just be my Fan Myopia talking.
So, here's their page for the first episode. Competing will be:
Icewave: Team Captain – Marc Devidts
(Hometown: New Orleans, LA / Currently Resides in Sunnyvale, CA)
Nightmare: Team Captain – Jim Smentowski
(Hometown: Colorado Springs, CO / Currently Resides in Bradenton, FL)
Plan X: Team Captain – Lisa Winter
(Hometown: Madison, WI / Currently Resides in Berkeley, CA)
Razorback: Team Captain - Zack Bieber
(Hometown: Fort Morgan, CO / Currently Resides in Wellington, CO)
Warhead: Team Captain – Ian Lewis=
(Hometown and Currently Resides in: Bournemouth, UK)
Warrior Clan: Team Captain – Terry Ewert
(Hometown: Colby, WI / Currently Resides in Abbotsford, WI)
Wrecks: Team Captain – Micah Leibowitz
(Hometown: Berkeley, CA/ Currently Resides in Hayward, CA)
I remember Nightmare and Warhead from the Comedy Central series. They faced each other once, in fact.
The others are new (or at least, I don't remember them).
edited 20th Jun '15 12:58:06 PM by Lightblade
Were the combatants in the old Battlebots and Robot Wars circuits typically big names in the robotics industry? Like, owners of multibillion dollar companies and/or people who design robots for the military, like these two guys going up to bat now??
I'm legitimately curious.
Addendum: Either way, Bllionaire Playboy: 1 - Military Contractor: 0.
edited 21st Jun '15 6:19:35 PM by KnownUnknown
Consider me impressed thus far. Icewave is one nice piece of work.
Jeez, that thing is huge. Not typically a good thing, mind.
edited 21st Jun '15 6:23:30 PM by KnownUnknown
Yeah, and the brain thing seems like a gimmick that doesn't actually do anything beyond give it a personality.
There's got to be a better way of doing that than otherwise useless lightbulbs.
EDIT: I'll admit I'm not much of a robot design expert, but I have to question some of these design decisions.
edited 21st Jun '15 6:29:08 PM by TheSpaceJawa
It's an old school "have fun making quirky but deadly robots" thing. But the size and bells and whistles with the weapons... eh...
I think they were lucky they got the "walker" (more of a meanderer, to be honest. I'm no engineer or robotics expert, but that's not a good thing to combine with a vertical spinner). After all, why fight your opponent when you could let them destroy themselves?
edited 21st Jun '15 6:30:09 PM by KnownUnknown
That was closer than I thought it would be.
And yet they still managed to get a massive strike in at the end.
So, I missed the last twenty minutes or so (though I caught Warhead's "match")
What did I miss? Who was crowned the winner in Plan X's match?
That wouldn't happen to be this Nightmare, would it?
Or Nightmare getting a taste of its own medicine from Whyachi, if you prefer.
edited 21st Jun '15 6:55:06 PM by KnownUnknown
Plan X was declared the winner, but honestly? I don't see it pulling off an actual win against any of the bots that are pulling through with genuine K Os.
Also, Warhead got dominated. And for some reason Warhead makes me think of a metal Zergling.
Ah, Nightmare. Classic Glass Cannon.
Yeah, I saw that bit with Warhead. Reminded me a bit of this.
edited 21st Jun '15 7:02:44 PM by KnownUnknown
Seems they could have used an extra pair of wheels.
That bumper spoiled so many fights, I swear...
Is it safe to render a verdict of it being everything it was supposed to be, though?
I found it just as fun as I remember it.
So, here's what I thought of the matches.
Icewave vs. Razorback: Razorback seemed to have the right idea to go right after Icewave before its spinner could get up to speed. But it just wasn't sturdy enough to withstand the hits. Once that wheel came off, it was the beginning of the end. But that was actually a pretty close fight, seeing how Icewave was smoking after earning its win. If Razorback were just a little sturdier, the result might've been different.
Icewave wins by KO.
Plan X vs. Wrecks: When the hosts talked about Wrecks' unique movement system, I wasn't sure what they meant. When I saw it in action, it did look rather unwieldy. It's opponent was someone I remember from the Comedy Central series as the builder of lightweight division robot Tentomushi see it in action here against Dr. Inferno Jr. But this was another close fight. I could've seen the judges going either way on that one. But in the end...
Plan X wins by judges' decision.
Warhead vs. Biteforce: Another fight featuring a nasty spinner. But in this one, the driver of Biteforce did an excellent job of outflanking Warhead, dominating the fight from start to finish. No KO, but the winner was so obvious they didn't even need to show the announcement.
Biteforce wins by judges decision.
Nightmare vs. Warrior Clan: The last match of the night did not disappoint. We've seen Nightmare in action from the clips I and Known Unknown posted earlier in this thread. But the builders of Warrior Clan were also familiar faces, being the team that built Son of Whyachi. Nightmare fared better against its successor ... sort of. It completely shattered one of Warrior Clan's drones, but didn't fare as well against the main bot. Well, at least Nightmare isn't completely helpless when flipped over. But it still never recovered fully, and eventually got thrown over the screws onto the wall, where neither its blade nor its actual wheels could get any purchase.
Warrior Clan wins by KO.
Now, they mentioned there being wildcard spots, but I'm not sure just how many are up for grabs, or the details of its tournament structure. The ABC site said it would be single elimination, but that tournament format, by definition, does not have wild cards. Anyway, out of the losers, I think Warhead's the only one of them I can't imagine potentially earning one based on their performances tonight. Then again, maybe it's a "losers bracket" kind of thing and they'll compete against each other for them. The show itself wasn't clear on how they'll determine who gets those spots.
Another consideration about Icewave is I don't think it has a low elevation on its spinning blade. Unless anyone else saw otherwise.
Could be a problem if it goes up against a low-ceiling flip bot like Warrior Clan that might have an opportunity to easily exploit a potential weak point.
Results and videos of the fights have been posted to the ABC website.
Full episode and recap here.
Regarding my earlier comment about them not being clear on the tournament structure, it turns out I just wasn't paying enough attention. They put up the clip where they explained that, too. There will be 12 winners and 4 wild cards advancing to the next round.
Now that I've had time to think about it, I wonder if the competitors had to make any special arrangements to have their bots taken to the arena. Could you imagine the hilarity that would've ensued if Warhead's team tried to bring it through US customs unannounced?
Ian Lewis: It's a killer robot. Name's Warhead.
(is dogpiled by Overreacting Airport Security)
On the other hand, they made it, so I guess everything went smoothly enough.
edited 22nd Jun '15 4:39:04 PM by Lightblade
I can't tell whether there are no right answers or no wrong answers to that question.
I missed the first episode. Anyplace I can watch it?
I posted a link to it in my last post.
Those fights are at least as entertaining the second time around, especially with cutting straight to the fights without the extra stuff.
I'm still torn on Icewave - it seems like a strong bot and that spinning lawnmower blade has the potential to make it one of the most dangerous bots in the competition, but between the smoking someone mentioned at the opening underneath the blade, it's definitely got weaknesses to be exploited, especially against anything that's really short.
I think both Wrecks and Plan X are easily joke competitors. I don't see either of them making it past their next round (assuming wrecks gets a second go) and I think the only reason either of them will get a second go is because they were fortunate to go up against one another. Wrecks just has joke mobility and turning which lets everything else near literally drive circles around it, avoid the weapon, and tear it apart from the backside. Then you have Plan X which is unwieldily, large, and fragile. The one time Wrecks did get a hit Plan X it took out a full third of its body. If Plan X had been up against anything else with real mobility, especially the likes of Nightmare or Icewave, the whole thing probably would have been torn to pieces quickly.
I'm hard pressed to say whether Warhead vs Bite Force or Nightmare vs Warrior Clan was the best fight of the night, though without a doubt the best moment of the night was Nightmare eating one of those WC microbots alive. That was exactly the kind of moment when this show is at its best.
For some reason, Warhead still makes me think of a metal Zergling.
And Nightmare really, really needs a self-righting feature of some kind. I don't think WC would have pulled that off if Nightmare hadn't spent half the fight (hilariously) trying to right itself but running around into things.
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