After the thrills and spills of Sundays first episode, I just wanted more. And what did we learn? Well I’m useless at predictions that’s for sure. If we had points for predictions, last week I would have got 4 right. Shocking. Fortunately there’s only 7 days in-between episodes, and come this Sunday, we get to see it all again. Once again, just like last week, I take a look at the competing machines and give my (not very) expert view on how they may perform. Think you can beat my predictions scores? Leave a comment and we’ll see how we rank next week!
Notes – The stats & honours I’ve mentioned are only relevant to the original series 1-7, Extreme 1 & 2, and not to do with performances on the live stage. – Newcomers are classed as a team with a new machine, regardless if the team have competed before.
Best UK Championship – Series 6 & 7 (Heat Round 2)
We start with the god of thunder; The hammer of Thor. Last seen being pitted by Lightning in the 7th wars, Thor has been ever present on the live stage and has been changed and upgraded numerous times. I’m glad Thor was included in this series. There needs to be a bladed axe to rival Terrorhurtz and this could be it. A very simple shape this time too, but there’s a couple of good spinners in this heat. Can the armour and structure stand up to it?
Verdict – Should easily make the second round. Then if things go their way Id have them in the heat final. Upsides: A lot of robots are flat and easily axed in this heat, Downsides: perhaps not as quick and manoeuvrable as others.
Tough As Nails
Best UK Championship – Series 7 (Semi-Final, Round 1)
Big, strong, sturdy, powerful. Four words that fit Tough As Nails’ profile easily. The first machine to use the now famous HARDOX armour, this machine made a very quick and lasting impression in UK 7, making it to the semi-finals beating Panic Attack along the way (though in my eyes through a controversial decision against Robochicken). Beefed up and being the only dutch team in this competition, Tough As Nails has a lot to live up to.
Verdict – Heat final. I would say Grand final straight away, but it all depends on how tough those wheels are against quite a range of weaponry in this heat.
I’ve always liked Draven since the moment I set eyes on it. Born before the ‘crush and lift’ of Big Nipper, it only had one appearance on the UK wars: a wildcard loss to King B in Extreme. And this was a shame. I liked the idea, the way it looked, and was unfortunate in qualifiers to either break down or be drawn against experienced robot like Smidsy. In fact they failed to qualify for 3 UK championships. I’m really excited to see this perform and hopefully do well.
Verdict – Despite me hyping up the chances of this bird like creature, I have a fear it will go out in round 1, unless they get the crusher in first. If they can make the first blow, they’ll look good. If the carbon fibre and kevlar shell gets hit with an axe or spinner first, their chances could go south fast.
Best UK Series – Series 7 (Heat Round 1)
Visually Disconstructor looks pretty much the same as UK 7. Internally, well actually it’s about the same as well. I remember seeing this for the first time, thinking the team hadn’t tightened the bolts for that blade. ‘It’s at a funny angle’, I recall my 13 year old self saying. Turns out the idea behind it, is to have the 20kg disc at that sloped angle to aim for low wheels on other machines. Clever. However the driving in the first round of the 7th wars saw then drive headfirst into the pit. Not very clever….
Verdict – Another machine I hope to see more of, I like unique designs like that. Something different. Can they cause some damage? I certainly think so. But it will have to be quick, as there are better robots in this heat. If not, it could be out in round 1 again.
Look at the size of those tyres! That’s because they’re from and old Ford Fiesta, so the team are thinking big. Remember robots like Immortalis and Death Warmed Up? This was originally built by the same team before being sold to the current one. Weapons wise there is an overhead swinging arm, looking here like it has three spikes on it, though I’ve heard they are interchangeable. Lets hope it last long enough for us to see them.
Verdict – A Chimera is a creature from Greek mythology, with parts from a Goat, a Snake and a Lion. Oh and it also breathes fire. How cool does that sound? Cooler than the robot in my opinion I’m afraid. Having seen what happened to The General in heat 1, tyres like this could be in danger right from the off.
I like this one. Very neat, very tidy and very original. Shockwave comes from the same team that produced Manta on the live stage (no relation to the American spinner). For those who’ve seen the very successful Manta before, you will know that it’s an explosive piece of kit and I expect the same from Shockwave. That lifter swings 360 degrees around the robot, which will help them if they get flipped. I’d also assume it can self right as well as being invertable. Good armour and speed, I fancy this as an underdog in this heat.
Verdict – If it performs anything like Manta in the warzone, this will definatley be one to watch. However as I’ve already predicted my two robots for the heat final, I’d have to say this one will do a good second round, but keep an eye on it. Could surprise.
M.R Speed Squared
Taking the Kill-E-Crank-E title for most awkward name to type in a heat, come M.R Speed Squared. Anybody remember Revenge Of Trouble & Strife? Well this beastly contraption comes from the same team and to me, this looks a lot meaner. Not that Trouble & Strife was bad. I liked the design, it just wasn’t very successful. Removal of the flipper and a switch to an invertable design means this one is potentially very destructive. And if spinners in this series can follow on from what Carbide has already done, I fancy this one to do well. And if you’re wondering about the name, apparently its the equation that works out the power of the disc. Mass x radius² = speed, otherwise seen as S = mr². A clever one there for the University Challenge types among us.
Verdict – This is the one for me to make it through to the Grand Final. A long shot I know, as it’s never really fought before, but it looks mean. This one and Tough As Nails are the big two in my eyes and I think this one will clinch it.
When I first saw the list of competitors for this series I thought there was a typo and it was Toxic 2 competing. I may also have been a little drunk at this time, but there you go. What a good looking machine this cunning Fox is though, even whilst sober. The sixth invertable machine in this heat has a lifter that extends like a crane arm and some good speed, engineered within a steel shell. The team are very experienced both on the live stage and in Robot Wars. They competed with the featherweight Gi-Ant-O and the antweight Anto in the UK series and failed to qualify with numerous heavyweights. Unknown to many, one of the teams heavyweights, TX-108, actually won an unaired Wild Card match in Extreme 1…. against Hypnodisc would you believe.
Verdict – A team who knows what they’re doing when it comes to building robots, having created plenty, I’d tip this machine for round 2 in this heat. Looks sleek and fast, in a similar way to Shockwave. Will be competing with them for the best lifter/flipper in the heat.
Once again thanks for reading guys, I do appreciate it. Check back next week for heat 3’s preview, which looks like it could be one of the best. If you want to have a go at your own predictions and see if you can get more right than me, leave a comment and we’ll compare next week. Don’t forget to activate BBC2 this Sunday at 8!