BattleBots: It’s On Discovery Channel and Science Channel Now
June 6, 2018 1:49 PM - Season 3 (Full Season) - Subscribe

Wait, what? There’s a new season? And it’s already halfway done? Well, they’re repeating some tonight and they’re probably On Demand or whatever. IT’S ROBOT FIGHTING TIME!
posted by Etrigan (17 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I stumbled on it pretty much by accident a few weeks ago.

It's better this season too: less interminable presenting, more fighting; and they're not doing strict brackets this time (or at least not yet? I'm a bit hazy on how they eventually determine a winner) so at the moment the episodes are more "here's a bunch of fan-favorite match-ups, including a 3-way rumble.".

The last episode had a robot with a cannon! which was exciting but a one-shot weapon after which got beaten into submission. And aren't projectiles supposed to be against the rules?
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 2:21 PM on June 6

Incidentally the "IMDB Series Info" metadata goes to the 2000-2002 incarnation; I think the correct IMDB link for the 2015- version is . I think that would be a mod fix.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 2:37 PM on June 6

Robot fighting championship is one of the few things I genuinely enjoy about our dystopian future (present).
posted by some loser at 7:39 PM on June 6

For those of you building deadly robots along at home, I've found the BattleBots Design Rules [pdf].
posted by Huffy Puffy at 5:27 AM on June 7 [2 favorites]

The new season will be comprised of 20 episodes, so quite a few left.

Projectiles have always been legal, but in the old rules they were required to be tethered. The new rules allow for limited untethered shots, but only after a strict safety review to make sure they won't breach the arena walls.
posted by Diginati at 12:15 PM on June 7

Visible during the Blacksmith fight this week: a camera drone hovering over the arena.

Horizontal spinners do seem to run a very big risk of flinging and/or overturning themselves in reaction to their own weapon impact. Drum spinners seem much more stable here, with the reaction simply pressing them down onto the arena floor.

I really like Huge's big bendy bouncy wheels; they always look like they're about to crumple, but never do.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 4:22 PM on June 11

I think I'm a couple episodes behind what's already aired (the last one I watched featured the disappointingly anticlimactic Icewave v. Yeti match), but I came here to say Huge is ridiculous and I love it so much.
posted by mixedmetaphors at 12:25 PM on July 1 [2 favorites]

Okay, I think I'm caught up!

I don't even know what the cheeseburger is doing here, other than being a cute sacrificial lamb. (With an even smaller, cuter, even more sacrificial lamb.) Hope the bacon starts living up to its potential.

The emotional roller coaster of Blacksmith v. Witch Doctor was fun. So pleased Witch Doctor got a win out of it.

So frustrating that both Lock-Jaw and Bronco had problems. The flipping, and Lock-Jaw's more-or-less survival of it, was still pretty glorious, though.
posted by mixedmetaphors at 9:02 PM on July 1

The emotional roller coaster of Blacksmith v. Witch Doctor was fun.

I call shenanigans on that one. Janky YouTube video: when Blacksmith puts Witch Doctor onto the screws they're rotating outwards and wedge WD against the arena wall. Just as they're about to get counted out: the screws reverse direction to rotate inwards, pushing WD back into the arena.

Do the screws routinely change direction? Because the timing of it there felt really fishy.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 12:22 PM on July 2

I refuse to accept your suggestion that televised theatrical combat sports are not universally 100% on the up-and-up.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 1:17 PM on July 2 [1 favorite]

Icewave v. Scorpius was one of the best battles of a season that's already had some good battles. Just amazing work by both teams.
posted by Etrigan at 12:21 PM on July 9

Yeah, that was really good; and close enough that really I would have been happy whatever way the judges' decisions went. The harrying tactics by Scorpius, to prevent Icewave from spinning its weapon up to full speed, worked really well.

Chomp continues to be terrible: lumbering and top-heavy. The show's heavily invested in its story of Chomp as technological marvel, packed full of AI smarts; not much sign of them in practice though.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 12:49 PM on July 9

Okay, the Tombstone-Duck match was some bullshit. The ref told Tombstone to get moving again for well over a ten count, and then immediately started counting Duck out when it stopped moving.

(And I didn't like Kenny saying that Warhead's strategy was being a "spaz", but a lot of people don't realize that it's a derogatory word.)
posted by Etrigan at 6:20 PM on August 29 [1 favorite]

Well...adios to Huge.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 6:35 PM on September 14

HUGE LIVES ON; it was named seed 13 or so in the final 16.

Duck losing the 6-robot rumble. Boo.

I didn't like Kenny saying that Warhead's strategy was being a "spaz", but a lot of people don't realize that it's a derogatory word.

One of Faruq's introductions this week used the word "spastic"; also not cool.

On, and a few weeks late, but the Blacksmith vs Warhead match in the US-vs-the-world episode was also some bullshit. Blacksmith beat the crap out of Warhead's dinosaur head and still lost on judges' decision; even the Warhead team couldn't believe it.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 12:12 AM on September 15

Looks like Huge will be matched up against Bite Force? I kinda like that matchup for them, if they can get it put back together.

Both last chance rumbles were interesting, but it was also kinda like watching a small college basketball conference final, where the winner gets to go to the NCAA tournament...and will have to play Duke or Kansas or Arizona or somebody.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 12:10 PM on September 15

the winner gets to go to the NCAA tournament...and will have to play Duke or Kansas or Arizona or somebody.

Heyooo.... Bombshell went way way farther than they really should have/deserved, but good for them for stringing together an unlikely winning streak at the right time when they got the opportunity.

And in the end, they go out upside down and on fire, which I'm pretty sure is the BattleBots way.
posted by Huffy Puffy at 7:37 AM on September 22 [1 favorite]

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