I find it funny how Witch Doctor was treated as the “upset” for the season and yet these last two episodes just delivered so many losses that at this point my bracket is a shell of its former self.
But this was a good episode to end the qualifying round with! The only major fault I had with this episode was showing the Chomp v Capt Shrederator battle instead of the Icewave v Nightmare fight. But that aside, the other three fights were great. I’ll publish another article after this one for my predictions but for now, let’s take a look at the battles!
BETA vs Overhaul
This was definitely the episode for the hammer bots as both BETA and Chomp won despite their faults. I have to say, my friends and I doubted BETA’s credibility as I thought BETA’s hammer looked weak while they thought he was just plain unwieldy. Luckily, we were given a good, dare I say, smashing, battle that delivered strong blow after blow against Overhaul. I think the real highlight of the battle was after it as I was reminded how heart endearing BETA’s builder was. Makes it all the more powerful when the audience started chanting BETA’s name near the end. Man, I got the feels now!
Hypershock vs Warrior Clan
Okay, so I know I’ve been throwing this a lot these past few articles but this was great battle and probably the best one yet, if not this round then definitely this episode. First off, that rake! I was so sure that rake would be unwieldy and would plain not work. But HOLY SHIT, it did! Not only was it awesome that he batted it out of the sky but then he blew it up and flew it through the air! Fuck, yes. But I really like the back and forth between Warrior Clan and Hypershock. They were evenly matched which made this match even better. Great battle with great moments.
Mega Tento vs Stinger
Bug vs bug! But for real, I’m sad, like, super sad, that Stinger lost. I love Stinger, I love the team, and I had them going to the final four. They’re a great robot and team but it just didn’t work out for them in this battle. If it was any other robot then Stinger could’ve won but MT was just too big and heavy. At least Mega Tento got a win under its belt. That’s gotta be one of the few times it won a fight.
Chomp vs Captain Shrederator
You would think ABC would end on a high note for the qualifying rounds but unfortunately that was not the case. I mean, the battle wasn’t bad but it certainly wasn’t thrilling. ABC certainly hyped the tough talk and grudge match between these two so I can’t fault them for riling me up. It’s funny how Chomp looked so ineffective against Capt, I’m not even fully confident Chomp’s blows did much to Captain Shrederator but hey I shouldn’t doubt too much. Chomp won so congrats on them!
ABC has delivered a satisfying conclusion to this season of Battlebots. An awesome semi-final match, a close final match, and a surprise rumble match ended the season on a high note. Let’s dig in and talk about these matches!
Bronco vs. Tombstone
Kenny Florian was right, if you want to beat Tombstone you have to be aggressive and Bronco was not aggressive. True, lining up your shot at the corner made Tombstone come to Bronco but Tombstone was still spinning that ferocious blade of his at full speed. Even if Bronco landed a good shot, he would have gotten hurt badly. Still though, this fight was pretty good and seeing Tombstone get flipped around out there along with Bronco was great. Even though I predicted Bronco winning the match, I find it funny how I still predicted that Bronco could lose by Tombstone peeling away his wheel armor and then disabling one of his wheels and that’s exactly what happened. Tough luck for Bronco but hopefully he’ll be back for the next season!
Biteforce vs. Ghost Raptor
Ghost Raptor’s ingenuity finally couldn’t save him and I’m not surprise that he lost here. GR was made to be a horizontal spinner, not a lift bot. He did not have the traction needed to push Biteforce around like he could with Icewave. I admire GR’s builders though in coming up with strategies in fighting off Biteforce but they were ultimately futile. Biteforce got an easy win that gave him a moment of relaxation before going on to the final match.
I’m sad that there weren’t more robots involved in the match like Stinger, Plan X, or Icewave but I still appreciate this nice tussle between three formidable opponents. I also like how none of them have fought each other yet in the ring so it gave us a fresh match with fighters we thought were long gone. I have to say though, I found it both hilarious and sad how WD just ended up being pounded by the Pulverizer while her minibot was doing its damnest to flip her over, better luck next time there….But I’m happy that Nightmare got a good win and gave Overhaul a nice uppercut to his jaw, that was satisfying.
Tombstone vs. Biteforce
Be aggressive, be aggressive, be aggressive. Sure, Biteforce may no longer be the clamp bot that it once was but you can’t argue with that strategy. Charge, charge, charge. You have to admit at first, I thought Biteforce got it but then it became a little close near the end when Biteforce struggled to move and Tombstone was pushing him around. Regardless, Biteforce eked out a win against the most formidable bot in the entire competition and take home the giant nut. Biteforce will go down in Battlebots history as the winner of Season 6, sharing the mantle with other Battlebot legends like Hazard, Biohazard, Ziggo, and Dissector.
Sorry for the short article but I’ll be back next week when I look back at this season of Battlebots, how was it, what could be improved upon, and more! (Spoiler alert, this season was awesome!)
Episode 5 was by far, the best episode of this ongoing season and is the very model of a great Battlebot episode. All the battles were brutal, vicious, and evenly matched. There were upsets, there was fire, and there was carnage. I was wrong that there was going to be one thrilling bout in my last article, there were four. Let’s take a look at this episode and understand why it’s the probably the best Battlebots episode ever.
Episode 5 wouldn’t be the stellar episode that it was if it wasn’t for the superb buildup to this point. By now, all these robots have won at least one battle and are qualified veterans in the Battlebox. The fact that favorites were fighting favorites had me on edge for the entire episode, something that Episodes 1 through 4 haven’t fully achieved. But four bots had to win and four bots had to lose, let’s check out these glorious, and at the same time bittersweet, fights.
Stinger the Killer Bee vs. Bronco
Ah! My heart! It weeps for Stinger. The builders were great people (you can’t help but love this couple) and their robot was spunky and fierce. Nonetheless! This battle was fantastic!
First off, I love that bit before the battle began where Stinger blew fire and Bronco flipped his massive arm. That was definitely like something from a wrestlers’ match where the fighters intimidated the opponents and please the crowd. Love it.
Then these rectangular bots inched their way around each other trying to find a good spot in. But once Bronco came in, the hits started flying and the robots were just going at each other. I thought Bronco was done for when it got on the screws but man, that was funny seeing him just ride those rails! Anyway, a nice strong and showy appearance by Stinger should be worth noted but it didn’t stop Bronco who flipped him out of the area. GOD! THAT WAS NUTS! Flames were everywhere! It looked like Stinger just exploded with fire! You couldn’t even see him when he got knocked out! It looked like Hell just opened up and swallowed Stinger whole!
Both of these bots came out relatively unscathed though by the looks of it which is great for Bronco cause he’s going to need that to fight Tombstone in the next round.
Also, huge shout out to Stinger, I love you guys, you’re the best and I hope to see you again next year!
Tombstone vs. Witch Doctor
Speaking of which, let’s talk about one of the most surprisingly matches in the evening. I got to say, I did not expect that from Witch Doctor even with her minibot out of commission. True, Witch Doctor took down Overdrive handily and that should be mentioned but damn that was something else! Witch Doctor has certainly proven one thing and that’s Tombstone is only a robot and not a god.
But I LOVE THIS BATTLE. Their first contact was a direct hit between their respective spinners and they just go flying and we just keep it up with that crazy energy for the rest of the battle even when Witch Doctor’s weapon went out of commission. Rewatching it again, I notice how Witch Doctor was being the more aggressive bot throughout most of that battle. What’s more, she didn’t get flung as far compared to Tombstone who got flipped upside down even. I don’t know how Witch Doctor, which to me did not look very sturdy or strong, was able to keep it up but she did thanks to that awesome weapon and her strong battery ram. God, seeing Tombstone get flung around like that was beautiful.
Unfortunately, that was it, Tombstone could afford to get flung around, but not Witch Doctor. One bad hit and whoops! Flipped onto her back and as helpless as a turtle. But god damn that one minute and forty seconds went by quick.
Also, it’s interesting to see Tombstone’s builder finally breaking his cold, confident exterior and have that nervous, ecstatic joy that he was clearly displaying in the post-match interview. Really goes to show how intense this match was for him.
Biteforce vs. Overhaul
But that intensity just didn’t hold a candle to the Biteforce/Overhaul match. You wouldn’t think that two clamp bots could make a thrilling match but god damn you can be wrong! Several times, I kept thinking how this match was like a battle between two ferocious kaiju with their jaws wide open and their unstoppable tenacity. God, I love those head-on collusions as it was like two monsters trying their damndest to kill the other.
And that match! Jesus, I first thought Biteforce got it but then Overhaul just made that amazing comeback that had even the judges scratching their heads. So why did Biteforce win it in the end despite the strong finish by Overhaul? Well, I think it comes down to one of the four categories; damage, control, strategy, and aggression. I think three of the four categories were fairly even but it was control that probably did it. Biteforce was deciding where Overhaul was going for the majority of the match thanks to those awesome magnetic treads of his. Biteforce was pushing Overhaul everywhere and even getting a few semilifts as well. Overhaul only took control less than a minute left in the match. Even though Overhaul lifted Biteforce entirely off of the ground, something that Biteforce couldn’t achieve, Biteforce still had some great control earlier in the match. And it’s that control that gave Biteforce the ability to win.
Icewave vs. Ghost Raptor
The upset match for Episode 5 broke my heart but in return, Ghost Raptor finally earned my respect. Ghost Raptor’s previous two matches were a bit wonky but he finally earned his credentials against the favored number 2 seed Icewave. Ghost Raptor’s ingenuity and willingness to evolve out did Icewave’s standard, tried-and-true-method. I had no idea that Ghost Raptor would win this battle, especially the way ABC was setting up this match. That part where Ghost Raptor’s builders realized that their Deicer was making their bot a bit uncontrollable made me more confident that Ghost Raptor was going to lose.
So in the end, all these four battles were great and definitely made this episode fantastic. It will be very challenging for episode 6 to live up to those kind of standards, especially with the match up between Bronco vs. Tombstone and Biteforce vs. Ghost Raptor. But who knows! Maybe we’ll have a Battlebot Rumble like during the CC days. Now wouldn’t that be a surprise twist?
With the quarterfinals underway, we are left with only robots that have won at least one battle. All of the 8 robots left have proven themselves (well…with the exception of Ghost Raptor) in one form or another. These four battles left should be wonderful and I’m looking forward to them. We still have a variety of robots left so the rock-paper-scissors format is still going strong. Without further ado, here’s who I think will win.
Tombstone vs. Witch Doctor-Tombstone wins by KO in about two minutes
In what may be Tombstone’s first actual fight, we see him go up against the wildcard, multibot Witch Doctor. Witch Doctor proved herself to be a strong competitor in the last round where she dent, chip, and toss around Overdrive in a surprisingly one-sided match. I don’t think Tombstone will mess around anymore and will go out swinging against Witch Doctor. Small that Witch Doctor’s chances of winning are, she still has a greater probability of winning than either Radioactive or Counter Revolution. If Witch Doctor can get behind Tombstone quickly and chip away at its backside, the battle may swing in her favor. However, all it takes for Tombstone to win is to swing around and whack Witch Doctor with one hit. Witch Doctor could easily go down in one hit and definitely after several. For Witch Doctor to win, she will need her flame bot to distract. Teamwork is essential here.
Icewave vs. Ghost Raptor-Icewave Wins by KO in less than a minute
Ghost Raptor limped through his victories by being slightly better than his struggling opponents. With a barely functioning lifting arm, Ghostraptor will be hard press to stop Icewave’s rotating blade without being heavily damaged in the process. Icewave won its last two rounds by KOs so we can expect a similar result here. Ghostraptor’s lucky streak ends now.
Biteforce vs. Overhaul-Biteforce wins by Judges’ Decision
We have yet to see Overhaul fight another bot so this fight is harder to predict. However, I think Biteforce has the best chance of winning thanks to those awesome magnetic treads and fantastic clamping arm. Biteforce tossed Warhead around in its first bout and had a great battle in its second round against Hypershock that really cements how good its driver is. I even wrote in my previous article how Hypershock would win that battle but nope! Not a chance. Overhaul, although a respectable robot, I do not think has the dexterity needed to grab Biteforce but he does have a strong drive. Whether or not that drive is strong enough against Biteforce’s magnetic treads we’ll just have to wait and see…
Bronco vs. Stinger-Stinger wins by Judges’ Decision in a thrilling bout
Of all the battles for tonight’s episode to watch out for, this is the one. Whoever wins this battle will likely fight Tombstone in the next round and can deliver the upset needed against that monster. Both drivers have proven without a doubt that they have the strength, the drive, the tactics, and the balls to win their battles. Stinger the Killer Bee has really shown itself to be the rising star of Season 6 thanks to its fantastic driving ability, great design, and its resolve to win. Bronco, however, has upheld itself worthy of being Toro’s son thanks to that beautiful flip delivered against Plan X. The question to ask though is; What happens when a Flipping Robot fights an Unflippable Robot?
Stringer is by far the worse robot out of the eight competitors left for Bronco to fight. Some of them, like Biteforce or Overhaul, can flip themselves after a few tries but others, like Icewave and Tombstone, have no ability whatsoever to right themselves. But Stinger! Oh, Stinger! He can drive easily upside down and that great shovel arm can right himself like that! He’s so energetic like a bouncing prize fighter! I can easily imagine Stinger just pushing Bronco all over the place and maybe lift him up a few times as well.
It’s not all bad news for Bronco though. I call upon the middleweight fight between T-minus vs. T-wrecks as my example of how a flipping robot can defeat an unflippable robot. T-minus (who was also built by Bronco’s builders) just kept flipping T-wrecks around and kept showing him who was boss. He was aggressive, he was accurate, and he never let up even though there was no point in it. The crowds loved it and the judges gave it to the strong T-minus for its aggressive nature. If Bronco can call upon his uncle’s spirit and fight Stinger like that then he can win.
I give it to Stinger in the end though but either way, this battle is going to be awesome.
Episode 3 of Battlebots was a return to form and more as we enter into Part 1 of the Sixteen Round. Most of everything that episode 2 did wrong or was lacking in was improved on drastically for this episode and will, hopefully, continue to achieve this level of quality from here on out. I dare even say that this episode was almost the quintessential episode of Battlebots.
First off, the filler in this episode was better managed as not only are we treated to a basic recap of the robot’s battles but we get a look into the builders’ strategies for their upcoming battles. Plus, a special bonus is given by the amount of time spent on the builders repairing their robots, something that the Comedy Central-era Battlebots often neglected. Although their repairs are briefly summarized, there is a sense of urgency, especially for Icewave and its overheated battery, for the builders to make sure their robot is properly working by their next round. I like it.
But of course, the battles are a great part of what makes this episode great so let’s talk about them.
Icewave vs. Chomp
Fire is not melting Icewave any time soon! But seriously, even when taking a face full of flame, Icewave came out of that battle relatively unscathed. That was another fun Icewave demolition and kudos for Chomp for hanging in there despite its losing battle.
Stinger vs. Warhead
I speak from the heart when I say this battle is what Battlebots is all about. No deceit or treachery like Complete Control vs. Ghost Raptor, no hard feelings or complaining like Lock Jaw vs. Overhaul, and it lasted the full three minutes unlike Bronco vs. Plan X. Even though Stinger had the battle right from the start, the fact that Stinger willingly flipped Warhead right side up just so they could fight some more is something very special. Warhead could have easily chipped or damaged Stinger some more but the builders didn’t care, they just wanted a fight! And the builders were so happy at the end and they shook hands and everything! Gosh, this battle was great!
Ghost Raptor vs. Warrior Clan
Sometimes, the worst enemy in the battlebox is yourself.
What a sad, sad, battle. Warrior Clan not being able to flip and Ghost Raptor rigged into a lifting bot. Once again, Ghost Raptor limps through another victory. I’m not going to lie, I’m looking forward to Icewave demolishing Ghost Raptor in the next round.
Wow, my prediction of two minutes was way too high, it took ten seconds. My search terms for my last article were mainly about “Bronco” or “Bronco Flip.” God, that was probably the most beautiful flip in Battlebots history. So graceful, so elegant, so perfect. One Flip.
Episode 4 has some interesting battles coming out; we have a rematch, we’ll probably have a one-sided battle, and we have some battles that could really determine who gets the nut. Let’s check them out.
Tombstone vs. Radioactive-Tombstone wins by KO in less than a minute
Radioactive won because the other robot wasn’t working. Tombstone won because it utterly dismantled its opponent. Unless Tombstone faces some unforeseen mechanical error, it will win against Radioactive and its pitiful hammer, sorry Radioactive, at least you seem like a bot that will be fun to watch getting destroyed.
Overhaul vs. Lockjaw-Overhaul wins by split judges’ decision
As unfortunate as it is to see these two robots battle each other again, at least Overhaul will have a chance at some clamping revenge. I think Overhaul is the stronger robot and will be able to fix its strategy from last time to take control of the fight. Still, it will be difficult for it considering how agile and durable Lockjaw is. Lockjaw will win if its aggressive, Overhaul will win if it can throw Lockjaw a bit. Either way, it should be a close battle.
Hypershock vs. Biteforce-Hypershock wins by judges’ decision
We only saw a glimpse of Hypershock and its rotating drum. I feel like it will have a leg up over Biteforce and be able to really give it some damage unlike Warhead which seemed to have only nicked it. Still though, Biteforce looks like a competent robot so I wouldn’t be surprised if it won. In all honesty, since we have seen very little of Biteforce it’s hard to predict this battle so we’ll just have to wait and see what he brings to the battlebox.
Overdrive vs. Witch Doctor-Overdrive wins by judges’ decision
My friends! THIS is the battle to watch! I guarantee it! Why?? Because whoever wins this battle will (very likely) face Tombstone in the next round. Now, in my heart, I think Witch Doctor can actually win against Overdrive but I really, really, want Overdrive to win simply because he is probably the most agile and speedy robot in the competition. If Overdrive can just keep out-maneuvering Witch Doctor and her minibot, and keep shoving them against the screws, he’ll win. However, Witch Doctor has that spinning drum that looks like it can do some serious damage.
HERE’S THE THING. If Witch Doctor wins, she will lose the next round against Tombstone. BUT, if Overdrive wins, then we can have an interesting battle. Overdrive would be the first, serious, contender against Tombstone. Overdrive has the agility and the capability to take him down. I seriously hope he faces Tombstone because that will be awesome. This will be a good battle either way even not factoring in Tombstone.
To be frank I was disappointed in this episode but probably not the reason you think.
In my last Battlebots article I gushed how in this new series, we get to spend more time looking at the builder’s personal lives and strategy thanks to the smaller amount of contestants. The fights were for the full time and not given brief clips. However, this episode I was disappointed as ABC decided to show four full battles and cram four more in by showing just clips, thereby keeping the Qualifying episodes to just two and not three episodes.
First off, I thought that was disrespectful to the builders and especially to the winning teams. I want to learn about who they are, their background, and their thought process behind building their robot. Second, I want to see the full fight! I want to see the full battles regardless if it was exciting or not. Third, I feel like ABC is already revealing which robots are going to lose in the next round because of their minute coverage on these bots. Why should I care about Chomp, Overdrive, or Stinger? You have given me no reason why I should care about them.
Sorry, this bothers me a lot.
Okay, with that said, the fights!
Lockjaw vs. Overhaul
Oh boy! What a fight to begin this episode! I love, love, love, love Donald Hutson. Creative, kind, and mellow, he’s probably the most humble out of all the veteran competitors. Yeah, that last hit by him after the buzzer raised some eyebrows but I believe he was sincere in his apology. And Lockjaw! He’s like the son of Dissector but more agile and colorful! I like it! Though I am concerned how effective Lockjaw is, it doesn’t seem strong and it doesn’t have any weapons to bash his opponents with. Maybe it will do better in the next round. And Overhaul is not bad either, I respect those MIT kids. They have that dorky, awkward look about them that a lot of builders have. They did a good job as well.
Bronco vs. Witch Doctor
If the Screws keep KOing robots they might as well be rewarded with the Giant Nut am I right folks? Screws aside, BRONCOOOOOO. YES, I was a fan of Toro and T-minus in the original series so seeing their prodigy just flip some shit I was happy. If Bronco is like his ancestors then he might upset some spinners! Witch Doctor has a neat flamethrower and I guess a cool vertical spinner but it didn’t really do much to Bronco I thought. Still a cool fight though.
Tombstone vs. Counter Revolution
If a vertical spinner fights a horizontal spinner, the horizontal spinner wins, that’s like a fact of life in Battlebots. But this…jesus. That was great! Seeing those parts go flying was amazing and made me giddy. And man, ABC was really laying it on thick how badass Ray Billings and his robot are. Haha, gotta love the bowling ball destruction bit, though.
Complete Control vs. Ghost Raptor
Very controversial match, I daresay. But let me just stop there and say, wow, the builders for Complete Control look like real douchbags with their shiny jackets, beards and smirks. Damn, not saying they are mind you but they sure do dressed the part. Entanglements aside this was a disappointing battle for both robots. Neither of them should have advanced. Complete Control wasn’t doing what it did best and throw a robot around the match while Ghost Raptor’s blade broke, seriously? You main weapon snapped off? That’s sad. I would have rather seen Overdrive and Chomp’s battle than this one.
Didn’t get a good look at all the battles or the robots but I like the looks of Stinger and Overdrive, I hope they do well in their next battle. Radioactive was a joke though. Seriously, its hammer looked like it was doing no damage and the only reason why it won was that the other robot was facing technical errors! Unless, I’m missing something big, Radioactive is going to lose next round.
Overhaul made sense as it did a good job against Lockjaw. Chomp I can’t honestly judge since we just got a clip of it but Warhead…really? He barely did anything to Biteforce! Same goes for Witch Doctor! Granted, they weren’t bad or anything but they certainly didn’t deserve a wildcard. I would have given it to either Nightmare or Wrecks. Confused why Warhead got the wildcard, I did a little digging though and found a Reddit AMA for a builder on Team Mohawk who says “It’s a mix of whether a losing team is able to get their robot fixed in time, whether they want to be considered as a wild card, and what would make for the best match ups later on.” Hm, seems a bit odd to me but I can totally understand the part about a robot functioning properly. If an important part were to be severely damaged during the fight, you would probably throw in the towel because you couldn’t replace it. You can read the original interview on reddit here. http://www.reddit.com/r/battlebots/comments/3bgqcd/mohawk_robot_team_member_here_ama/
Who would win?
Everyone on reddit and elsewhere is crying Tombstone and I agree that he has a good chance. I would actually love to see Icewave fight Tombstone, that would be awesome! Icewave and Tombstone horizontal spinners would destroy the other before the match is over and I seriously think Icewave has the chance in beating him.
Who else could be Tombstone’s foil though? If we look at the history of Battlebots we come across the many-time Middleweight champion Hazard, a horizontal spinning robot. The amount of robots Hazard has KO’d is staggering but it finally fell in Season 5 against T-minus, a flipping robot. Check it out below.
Spinners have that problem of stability. If they’re flipped over even once, they’re done. So if Tombstone faces a flipping robot that can get a quick flip in, it’s a KO. Bronco is the first that comes to mind and in all honesty, if they put in a flipper extension, they can beat Tombstone (plus, the builders were the same guys that built T-Minus). Warrior Clan is also a good candidate, perhaps the multibot can use its minibots as a distraction before coming in and flipping Tombstone.
Tombstone also doesn’t look like a very fast robot and when you factor in its one-sided spinning blade, you got a robot with some big weak spots. A durable and agile robot would be able to bring Tombstone down. In this case, I’m looking at Stinger and Overdrive who both have shown to be durable and surprisingly quick. I honestly think they have a shot in beating Tombstone.
The other two potential winners I would bet on would be Icewave and Bronco. Icewave’s blade doesn’t do a lot of damage but it can spin up fast and keep spinning despite delivering heavy blow after blow (something that a lot of robots have trouble with *coughGhostRaptorcough*). Bronco’s crazy flipping arm could also incapacitate robots, especially if he flips them onto those crazy screws.
That’s all for now, looking forward to, hopefully, full battles in the next episode!