The Worst Robots on Earth

DISCLAIMER: These obviously NOT the worst robots on earth. They are some of the best! They are literally on a show whose goal is to entertain humans. This is worth noting.

The reason for this post – it just seems like the lower class of Battlebots this year is…well…really low. Really bad. So we’re going to discuss the Ten (actually made it to 15!) worst robots in the sport this season, and consider what makes them so bad!

1) Horizon (0-2)

Strengths: Cool-looking

Weaknesses: Driving, Weapon, Durability, Self-Right

We’ve seen it twice now, and I (and I imagine some others) have no idea how it’s “supposed to work”.

Those spinners are the weapons, right? They don’t cause any damage of course, but I assume that’s the idea. Is the thing in the middle…relevant…or what?

Ugh. Let’s just move on.

2) Starchild (0-2)

Strengths: Durability and Design makes it very hard to kill!


Starchild avoided being #1 here by generally moving fine, and being durable, I guess. They lasted 3 minutes both times.

However, if you have a ZERO as your weapon, that doesn’t seem to inflict any damage at all, to anyone, under any circumstance, you’re not going to get very far. Or win anything, apparently.

It’s too bad, we want to see more interesting robots, more robots like huge, and the weapon sounded great when they talked about it! But it’s clearly not succeeding.

3) Kraken (0-2)

Strengths: Durability, I guess

Weaknesses: MOBILITY

The new Kraken is sadly one of the worst-moving bots we’ve seen yet, and we can only hope it’s a temporary issue. They almost surely would have won the match against Beta (who bizarrely looked reborn against Shatter!, after being terrible in fight one) if they could have moved at all while they were attacking Beta’s vulnerable backside, but they couldn’t land real damage and then things turned around. This second fight was really sad though. The trading of weapons too also appears to have backfired, as Quantum is unstoppable usually pretty much the same weapon as Kraken always had. What we’ve seen from from the new spinner hasn’t been very good either. But again – Driving! If you can’t drive, what the heck can you do!

4) Mammoth (1-1)

Strengths: Ummm, hard to say really. Design, maybe? Kinda?

Weaknesses: Weapon, Durability, sometimes Mobility

Mammoth is just kinda feeble these days, with a very non-potent weapon, and also an incredible ability to destroy themselves. I feel like they self-righted pretty well back when they looked decent, in 2020 season? Cause right now self-righting is a strenuous, arduous, stress-filled task that makes everyone hold their breath. Yeesh. Their “win” over Starchild was really uninspiring. Some credit for them calming down and landing on a strategy in the middle there, but not enough. Come on Mammoth! Come back!

5) Triton (0-2)

Strengths: Weapon hits hard

Weaknesses: Durability, Driving, Design

This one looked a little better last time, but it still got knocked out in under a minute. So…(throws hands up in the air)

Being a horizontal spinner was a bad career decision, tho the weapon does seem to be capable of damage. The issues here are durability and driving and design and the fact that they’re already 0-2. I don’t feel like spending more time here.

6) Shreddit Bro (1-0)

Strengths: It’s 1-0

Weaknesses: DRIVING. Moving with intent, specifically. We know very little else because it fought Horizon in its only match

The fact that I’m slotting a 1-0, undefeated robot here should tell you how I really feel about this thing. No direspect to the builders, but for 2 plus seasons now we’ve seen these guys bring a robot to Battlebots that moves very, very, very poorly. It used to be Pain Train, now it’s Shreddit Bro. I’m sorry, but there’s just nothing worse than watching a robot that can’t move in the directions that it wants to and needs to move. It’s awful television. Next.

7) HiJinx (1-1)

Strengths: They generally win? And I thought they were reliable/durable, but then they basically dropped dead in match 2. So

Weaknesses: Weapon is meh, drives like a shopping cart (and gets much worse when flipped)

HiJinx generally flunked the eye test, but would win enough to make the playoffs every season and remain respectable. The issue is this year they still look terrible, and they lost a very winnable match (Capt Shred) after winning their first very winnable match (a crippled Big Dill, who avoids appearing on this list by looking much better in their second fight). So yeah, I’m losing faith. Horizontal weapons are not in vogue these days, for the 2,000th time.

8) Captain Shrederator (1-1)

Strengths: Ummm, hmm. The weapon can hit hard in the proper situation

Weaknesses: Durability and Reliability.

And here’s another horizontal weapon, to be followed by even more.

Shred has lurked at the bottom of the sport for so long they’re starting to occasionally surprise ppl with competence. Like beating HiJinx! That was kind of cool, a nice story. God the spinner breaks so easily tho. They’ve also been a lesser, more disappointing version of Gigabyte. Oh hey, they’re up next.

9) Gigabyte (0-2)

Strengths: Pretty durable, but a far cry from the durability of Gigabytes past

Weaknesses: Archaic design, weapon keeps breaking, self-right keeps breaking, they keep losing

I was a major Gigabyte supporter for the past two seasons, I loved this insane approach of “well, if our robot is completely invincible…”. But yeah the party is effing over. They really didn’t have a good season last year after a terrific 2020, and now they have no drivers who keep running the thing into the walls. This robot could be better, they’ll probably be better, but right now they have fallen and delivered the final nail in the coffin to the full-body spinner design. Ah well!

10) Overhaul (1-1)

Strengths: Durable. Design is ok against some robots (Starchild!)

Weaknesses: Weapon, Weapon, Weapon. It’s poorly designed on paper, and in practice doesn’t work very well

I just think this design is really misplaced, even though clampers/grabbers are certainly having a comeback year. It seems like it’s meant to grab and hold…ok. It doesn’t carry as well as it needs too, isn’t fast or strong enough to pull someone around and hurt them by slamming into a wall. It’s anachronistic. Needs to be better on another vector (improve strength or speed or the forks themselves) to be competitive, methinks. Their only win was against Starchild.

11) Banshee (1-1)

You know, I’m trying my hardest and I can barely remember how this robot looked, or how their fights went, or anything really. So let’s slot them here, take a breather, and not worry about it. If nothing else they are a forgettable middling robot that did pick up a win against a poorly performing Valkyrie (I guess I do remember that). I also am definitely a skeptic of these flippers that “punch” rather than flip, and don’t get low (see my inclusion of 2-0 Lucky coming!). So maybe I’m being unfair to Banshee. For now they are here, they can certainly improve.

12) Valkyrie (1-1)

Strengths: Weapon hits hard, or at least it used to!

Weaknesses: Really poorly driven, I’m sorry to say. And being a horizontal weapon right now is just not what you want to be.

These guys were really good a couple of years ago! The 9th seed in 2020, if my memory is correct.

The problem is they have a horizontal design and you know the rest by know (I cannot stop repeating this same point). That took them from a top robot to middle of the pack (like Bloodsport). But then they have new management, some new ideas in play, and are still figuring things out. That’s fine. But in the meantime they are very unimpressive in their bouts (their “win” was pretty much caused by Mammoth cartoonishly self-destructing on their own, they attempted a flip and the next thing everyone knew there were pieces of Mammoth just falling off the robot). And then they lost to Banshee, who is definitely nothing special. Again – anyone is capable of improvement.

13) Glitch (0-2)

Strengths: A weapon that outshines every robot in this post, by a mile

Weaknesses: Terrible driving, robot is glued to the floor, and oh, still no self-righting mechanism and it appears that is going to cost them every fight they have this season.

Let’s be fair – the ceiling on this robot is much, much higher than anyone else here. It’s a giant vertical spinner that’s more powerful than almost any others! They started out their career a laughably, ridiculous 7-0. And yet…

They can’t move, it’s like they’re anchored to the floor. And they have no self-righting system. Last year they were the luckiest robot on earth and it was awesome, in the offseason they lost their luck and fixed none of their very obvious weaknesses that are visible from space. So yeah. The sport has “figured them out”, or reality has caught up with them. Whatever. They belong on the list of bad robots now.

14) Switchback (1-1)

Switchback seems fine, I don’t know. I’m putting them here partially because I dislike the big-picture approach they have taken. Last year they were a giant unfettered drum spinner that was obscenely large. It was ridiculous. And I found that a lot more interesting than what we’re getting now, which is just a drum spinner on a slow-moving arm. I think the weapon lost power but also flexilibity here. It was just so…big last year, it was seemingly unavoidable. Overall yeah, I’m concerned they’ve gone from a riskier but maybe rewarding approach to something safer and more commonplace. With a lower ceiling. But who knows, we’ve only seen them twice so far. And last season they weren’t exactly good! So yeah.

15) Lucky (2-0)

Strengths: Winning matches against really bad opponents. Driving. Durability seems ok

Weaknesses: Weapon is the saddest “flipper” I’ve ever seen. Yikes

And here I cruelly slide in the 2-0 Lucky. Look at this schedule.

  • Triton (0-2)
  • Kraken (0-2)
  • // upcoming
  • Shreddit Bro (1-0)
  • Cobalt (1-1)

Yeah, I already covered the first three, they were 3, 5, and 6 on this list. Sigh. Obviously he hasn’t faced Shreddit Bro yet.

I just think this robot is meh. We’ll see how they do against Cobalt. That’s a real test for sure! If Lucky lasts over a minute I will thoroughly apologize for this inclusion.

Alright, let’s now see everyone improve and make me look like a hater. Please!

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