Here we go then folks. After 5 gruelling heats we arrive here at the Robot Wars Grand Final. Excited? Despite the fact this has been a relatively short series by former Robot Wars standards, I am very excited. But also a little disappointed that its the end. You’ll do another series wont you BBC? Wont you????
Also a massive thanks to a few people before I start. Firstly, as ever, to robotwars2016 who correctly (if not a bit of a fluke) agreed with me that Pulsar would make it to this stage. Just. Secondly to the actual Pulsar team & the Chompalot guys (big shout out to them for last Sundays heat), who found my articles and stuck them up on Twitter. I usually have only about 5 or 6 views on each of them so far, the heat 5 preview itself currently stands at 210. It means a lot guys, thank you so much.
Onto the main event then, the final itself. Below are my thoughts on the heat performances and who I think has the best chance of taking the title. Once again this article is barring the wildcard entry, as we (still) don’t 100% know who it is. It will be difficult without knowing the draw, but I’ll give it a try. Here we go!
My Original Verdict – I like the look of this one. Team member Sam Smith (famous before the singer of the same name) built Tiberius, so he knows what he’s doing. A lot of people have this one down as heat favourite, and its hard to argue with that.
Heat 1 winners Carbide started this ride off with, in the end, rather a comfortable heat victory. I wasn’t too sure about the power in bar spinners beforehand, however it made light work of The General and Bonk in its opening 4 way melee. It wasn’t all plain sailing though, weapon problems struck and it was a race against time to fix it. The blade seemed to be working well against Terrorhurtz, but just couldn’t make the impact into the axed machine that it had before. That said Terrorhurtz’ axe wasn’t actually working, relying on control and power to pit Carbide – that could be a crucial clue to others in this final. From then on though, Carbide didn’t seem to have many problems. They obliterated crowd favourite Nuts in possibly the most destructive battle of the series so far, then set aside Behemoth twice to claim the first spot in the final. A handsome tally of 6 points was matched by 2 other competitors in this final, meaning it is a score to be well respected. Carbide was the most destructive robot going into this final. I was ridiculously squawking at the telly when it was taking Nuts apart, and if it can keep that up there wont be much around to stop it.
Final Verdict – I think Carbide has the ability to beat most of the other finalists, but could have some problems. For example, Id like to see how it compares in fight against Shockwave, a pusher. That’s how it was beaten in the heats and Shockwave and possibly TR2 could have the power to withstand its blows. I can’t underestimate Carbide though despite this, it is definatley one to be feared. Chance Of Winning 8/10.
My Original 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.
Well I said it could surprise. Sturdy Shockwave was the only robot who beat the machine that it had previously lost to (minus Pulsar & Gabriel who didn’t fight in round 2). They started relatively quietly. Whilst Thor and Tough As Nails got to grips with each other, Shockwave gave a little push here and there until TAN died and was pitted. In the head to heads with Foxic, Thor and MR Speed Squared, Shockwave definatley had a chance especially with Speed Squared having weapons problems. Thor were the stand out robot in that heat, no question. It was always a case of who they’d fight in the heat final. Enter this strong pusher, who managed to seize every opportunity that came their way with some clever and opportunistic moves and, somehow, managed to pit the mighty Thor. It was a surprise, but still Shockwave is rightly in the final and could continue to surprise against stronger machines.
Final Verdict – Shockwave goes into the grand final as underdogs for me, regardless of who the wildcard will be. Some of the flippers could cause them problems, but the spinners? That’s where I think the surprises could come. They might not win but could do better than we think. Don’t write them off yet. Chance Of Winning 7/10.
My Original Verdict – We haven’t seen too many flippers in this series yet, so there could be fireworks in this heat. Slick design, very very powerful, quick and manoeuvrable. I’ll keep it simple. Heat winners and easily.
And so it turned out to be. So far Toon Raider 2 are the only unbeaten machine left in the competition such is the structure of the show this series. This ‘giant doorstop’ didn’t even have a working weapon in the first fight but it was still enough to help Big Nipper take out Supernova after Or Te just stopped. Soon after that King B & Big Nipper were beaten, as well as doing the double over Dantomkia and in the process they earned the only perfect score of the series with 9 points in the head to heads. And all the way through, the weapon wasn’t even at full power. I’ve seen it at live shows, trust me the flipper is devastating. But it was well driven and low, which makes TR2 very difficult to beat. Minus the bum axe, it has one of the best weapons around. Tough armour and if they’re able to keep that front end towards an opponent, TR2 has an incredibly good chance of taking the title.
Final Verdict – Definitely going in as one of the favourites even if you just look at the heat record. TR2 was very impressive in that heat, just look at the machines it beat. I’d expect to see them in the final two at a minimum. No pressure guys… Chance Of Winning 9/10.
My Original Verdict – This one gets my special ‘underdog of the heat’ star for week 4. Looks slick and well designed. I’m going to say this will get to Round 2 but once again, could be in the running to win the heat as well. Watch out for it.
Well it seems I’m good at predicting underdogs then. Enter the showmen of the wars with Apollo who fought fiercely and entertained at the same time. As much as I liked a lot of the robots in show 4 I was dead chuffed for these guys when they won, a fun team and a good bunch of guys. They had their fair share of problems with wheels been torn away from PP3D in the first fight, then a few drive problems in the head to heads. Despite that they came back, threw Storm 2 out of the arena and in one of the highlights of the series turned over Dead Metal, Matilda AND Shunt in real house robot rampage. And they won the heat and are in this very final, what a story for them. The robot itself is very simple, and as I said before has close ties with Kronic The Wedgehog, an impressive robot itself. That doesn’t take away the achievement done by Team MAD, heat 4 was arguably one of the toughest and they passed through it with flying colours, and house robots.
Final Verdict – I think Apollo can continue its run. They’ve arguably already passed their, and our, expectations for the series already and I reckon they will give some fine machines a good fight in the head to heads. The team say that their main aim was the be entertaining, and they’ve certainly achieved that already. I wish them well, I just have one request: Go and visit Killalot in the corner would you? Chance Of Winning 8/10.
My Original Verdict – Now on first view of every machine in this series, this was the one that made me go back and Google again. If that drum can do those speeds them wow, this could be something special. I don’t only have Pulsar down for the heat, but for the whole series, that’s how highly I rate this machine.
The final competitor that we definitely know is fighting in this stage is Pulsar. I had such high hopes for Pulsar as you can see, so naturally I was gutted and shocked when it lost in round 1. Then poor Chompalot started breathing fire in it’s first head to head against Gabriel and that too was gutting to see. But Chompie’s loss was Pulsars gain and just as the team were packing up, the Judgez Mazzive came over and put them back in. Now we could see what it is capable of, but the damage to Beast wasn’t much. Enough to knock out the link though, and after quite a controversial battle against Ironside (who I thought performed the best in the heat), qualified for the heat final against Gabriel. This was Pulsar’s best performance and though it seem to stop and rest 3 times into the fight, showed good control to win it on a judges. I think we’re still yet to see full damage potential, and I hope we get to see it in this final.
Final Verdict – I said I fancied Pulsar for the series and I have to stick by that. If it works at full potential then it will be difficult to beat, even against some of the really bit hitters. After hyping them up I was a little underwhelmed by the damage caused in the heat, but it was still impressive. I still have very high hopes for Pulsar in this final. The death hum would be deafening should they come up against Carbide, and that is one fight I am dying to see. Chance Of Winning 9/10.
What a final we have in prospect. Carbide, Shockwave, TR2, Apollo & Pulsar have given us some memorable moments so far this series. And when joined by Behemoth, Thor, Dantomkia, Storm 2 or Gabriel they will give us more and make for a fantastic spectacle. I can’t wait for this Sunday night, but like I say I will be disappointed when it’s over. But less of the negative and more of the positive for now. Let the Grand Final begin!