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As Robot Wars is set to return, a look back at the some of the weirdest moments from the famed original series

THE hit TV show that become a cultural phenomenon among nerds and proponents of machine violence everywhere is coming back.

(Article by Nick Whigham)

The BBC recently announced Robot Wars will be returning to its airwaves for six episodes of metallic-mashing nostalgia later this month.

For pacifists and those who can’t remember the program, Robot Wars was a British game show in which teams of amateur and professional roboteers pitted their murderous creations against each other in what was something akin to a robotic version of Rome’s Coliseum.

The robotic death matches took place in an enclosed arena filled with hazards as well as more powerful “house robots” which were not bound by the same weight and weapons restrictions which governed the contestants’ robots.

It first aired in 1998 with Jeremy Clarkson as presenter, who went on to find international fame as a Top Gear host, and aired in the UK until 2003.

According to BBC exec Kim Shillinglaw, the technological advances in the years since the show’s last episode will ensure a new generation of menacing machines.

“Robot Wars is an absolute TV classic and I’m thrilled to be updating it for the next generation of viewers,” she said. “With new technological advances making for an even more exciting and immersive experience.”

But until then, let’s look back at a couple of the most memorable moments (and robots) from the show, least of which include Jeremy Clarkson’s exceptional late 90s style.

Razer was one of the most aesthetically imposing robots to feature on the show and also one of the most successful with a record of 40 wins and five losses throughout its career.

With a giant scorpion-like claw as its primary weapon, it was champion of the fifth series of Robot Wars, runner-up in the sixth, and won the first two World Championships (if you didn’t know, robot fighting is a serious business).

During that time Razer had an ongoing rivalry with another fan favourite robot named Tornado which culminated in the final of Robot Wars: The Sixth Wars.
Before the fight it was revealed engineers had fitted Tornado with a giant spinning blade supported by a massive frame.
At one point during the fight, Razer managed to pick up its opponent with a newly added hook and carry it to a pit within the battleground.
All robots were supposed to be able to fit inside the pit, and if they were forced in it would result in defeat.
However the frame seemed to prevent Tornado from being dropped in and the robot avoided the hazard and eventually went on the win the fight on the judges’ scorecards.
According to, the controversial result “spawned a war between fans of Razer and Tornado over who the rightful champion is, that continues to this day.”

Razer will go down in the Robot Wars proverbial Hall of Fame.Source:Supplied



Another memorable battle featured one of the simplest and most effective robots on the show which was built by a self-employed mechanic from Suffolk.

Chaos 2 was the first robot to consist of a front wedge that was used to drive underneath its opponents and flip them onto their backs, often disabling them.

In the final of the third series of the show, Chaos 2 took on Fire Storm — a robot which had adopted a very similar design.

In the matchup, neither robot could get underneath the other resulting in them basically bashing into each other for the opening minutes of the fight.

But when Fire Storm accidentally drove onto the wedge of Chaos 2, its operators took full advantage and flipped it over.

Chaos 2 then charged, got underneath and launched its opponent over the arena wall resulting in what was latter called the first Out-of-the-Arena (OotA) in Robot Warshistory.

Clearly, one for the history books.

While some robots, like the aforementioned Razer and Chaos 2, were known for their great battles, others will simply be remembered for their colourful design.
There was the one that looked like an angry lady beetle crossed with a warthog.


Points for intimidation.Source:Supplied


Very menacing.Source:Supplied

And there was a Triceratops with a chainsaw protruding from its chest called Max Damage.


Max Damage was armed with a chainsaw positioned just underneath the dinosaur’s head.Source:Supplied

It remains to be seen if the second coming of the show can reach the cultural heights of the original, but it’s certainly got its work cut out for it.

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