BattleBots 2021: Episode 4 Power Rankings

Another week has passed, another episode of BattleBots has blessed our television screens. In a diverse field of weapons, we had a flipper, a lifter, a spinning flipper, six horizontal spinners, two hammer saws, four vertical spinners, and a spinning puncher. And who says there isn’t variety on this show?

Among those bots, we had returning favourites making their season debuts, others making their second appearances of the season, and some appearing to a BattleBots audience for the first time. Tombstone was looking to bounce back from a disappointing opening against Captain Shrederator. Blade became the first South Korean entrant in the history of the tournament, with Skorpios returning in its opposite corner. Glitch omni-wheeled its way into action against the oldie and by no means goldie Ghost Raptor. And it all culminated in the scintillating main event, with SawBlaze blazing off against Mad Catter, in the most blazing main event ever likely to blaze. Is that a thing? It is now.

Naturally, that means changes to the Power Rankings are abound. But how wild are they? We’ve got a whole bunch of ups, downs, and new entrants, so for the (in my opinion, obviously) best place to go to figure out where everyone stands at this point in time. Things still haven’t ironed themselves out fully, with bots just starting to fight twice, with everyone having fought at least once, and a handful whoa are yet to enter the ring. It’s not really looking good for that bunch to be honest, but it’s still surprising to see returners like Perfect Phoenix waiting in the wings for so long.

So who are the big winners, losers, and movers? Keep reading on below to find out.

1. SawBlaze (2-0) =

Still the undisputed number one for now. That display against Mad Catter was A-MAZ-ING and showed Go & co. at their absolute best. They didn’t quite get the knockout against Minotaur, but here they displayed all their KO-ability and then some. Mad Catter isn’t exactly an easy opponent to beat. It didn’t look like it here. Some X-rated entertainment sees SawBlaze carry on as the current team to beat.

2. Whiplash (1-0) =

Holding onto second spot after their dominant win over Bloodsport.

3. End Game (1-0) =

The champs stay third after KO’ing Hydra. Another intriguing wait to see how they’ll fare next time out.

4. Tantrum (2-0) +9

This little bot is brutal. Like, absolutely brutal. Even under the new drivers Alex and Ginger they look as good, if not even better than last year. Much like SawBlaze, they showed their ability to land a knockout blow, leaving Lucky seeing stars. They rode their luck at the start but they pulled through for an awesome victory. The only reason they’re in fourth is because they haven’t taken on truly elite level opposition yet. When they do, and if they win, we’re in for a heck of a run this season.

5. Uppercut (1-0) -1

Still looking good after a superb victory over Gigabyte.

6. Black Dragon (1-0) =

A victory over the legendary Icewave sees the Brazilians stay in sixth for now.

7. Ribbot (2-0) +7

A bit of a rise up the ladder after the boys from WPI turn themselves, and Overhaul as it turns out, blue. It was all over in a trice, with the returning bot from MIT left with its forks bent inwards and with nowhere to go. That’s two KO’s that have taken all of 40 seconds to achieve. Let’s see what they’ve got against the more esteemed robots of the field.

8. Riptide (1-0) -1

I’m still not over their awesome win against HUGE. Can’t wait to see what they have to offer.

9. Fusion (1-0) -1

Still holding a top 10 place for now courtesy of its brutal win over Cobalt.

10. Jackpot (2-0) +14

If their victory over Deadlift was unconvincing, their latest one was anything but. Malice looked totally out of their depth against the “hometown heroes,” being flung about from pillar to post, taking out an arena light in the process. You have to love it when that happens. That puts the Vegas lads at 2-0, the fourth bot to hit that landmark so far, and they nicely round out the top 10.

11. Hypershock (1-0) -2

Just outside the top 10 for now after a comfortable victory over Slammo.

12. Skorpios (1-0) NEW ENTRY

I just want to say I hope I have a relationship in the future like Zach and Diana. You guys are genuinely so wholesome and I love it. They combine forces again this season to secure an easy win against the vicious-looking Blade and get their first victory of the season, and they look on course to build on their impressive run to the top 32 last season.

13. Mad Catter (1-1) -8

It would be unwise to write off Mad Catter just yet. Despite their dip in the rankings, they only came unstuck this week against a SawBlaze that looked like it had slipped something funky into its morning Weetabix. The cat did well to last as long as it did, which shows its durability at least. Will hopefully recover with a big win in its next bout.

14. Captain Shrederator (1-0) -4

I’m still not sure where to rank the ol’ Stars n’ Stripes machine after its surprise win over Tombstone, but 14th will do for now.

15. Deep Six (1-0) -4

Another tough bot to rank, but still, that win over Pain Train will live long in the memory.

16. Copperhead (1-0) -1

Rode its way to a split decision against Lockjaw, but at least the drum looked pretty vicious.

17. Rotator (1-0) -1

Gold! Ah! Kraken is still at the dentist after their fight.

18. Claw Viper (1-0) -1

Looking very good early on, but could do with winning against an actual good bot on actual television.

19. Blip (1-0) -1

Some say Rusty is still soaring the cosmos after this fight.

20. Shatter (1-0) -1

Hopefully a first televised appearance will see the football (yes, I said it) fanatics climb up the table with their massive hammer.

21. P1 (1-0) -1

Whizzing their way to a victory over Valkyrie. It was a narrow victory, and I guess we have to see how things go from here.

22. Tombstone (1-1) +11

Tombstone’s back! Is it? I guess. It won, at least. It was about the most unconvincing victory you’re ever likely to see, coming via double KO (or “simultaneous incapacitation” if you want to get technical about it) against Mammoth. It took a wheel off the cavebot, but managed to break itself in the process. Still rising up eleven places, but it’s really hard to tell where their season is going so far.

23. Mammoth (1-1) -11

Tombstone’s opponent sits just below it in the rankings, having proven its worth against the King of Kinetic Energy. They managed to KO Ray’s beastly bot, but sadly had to take themselves out to do it, leaving Tombstone to take the win on damage. I still think Mammoth could pass off some controlled movement at the end, but beggars can’t be choosers. If that’s the right phrase. Anyway, go Mammoth etc etc.

24. Gruff (1-0) -3

Still not sure they’ve ironed out their drive issues this year, but boy that flame looks hot.

25. Witch Doctor (1-0) -3

Managed to muster its way through to the end against DUCK!, but it was a nervy victory. More to come from the former runners-up.

26. Blacksmith (1-0) -3

Haven’t seen the best of the flaming hammer saw yet, but I’m sure that will come soon enough.

27. Retrograde (1-0) NEW ENTRY

I feel bad entering Retrograde so low, given the dominant nature of its first ever victory. However, that victory came against Rampage through my YouTube subscription feed. Don’t get me wrong, it looks like it has a lot of potential, but it didn’t exactly have to work hard hor its first win. But let’s see what it’s got going forwards.

28. Glitch (1-0) NEW ENTRY

Gliding into action and rounding off the “winners” section for now, Glitch didn’t exactly look like Giant Nut-winning material in its opening fight against Ghost Raptor (presumably winning through damage), but the team said post-fight it was down to them getting stuck on the floor. Hopefully if they manage to fix this issue we’ll see a lot more fluidity from their bot going forwards. Because it looks cool as f*ck.

29. Lockjaw (0-1) -4

Still standing tall as the best of the “losers” so far this season, Donald Hutson’s bot looks set for another entertaining campaign after narrowly losing to Copperhead.

30. Hydra (0-1) -4

Not the start Hydra would have wanted, but I’m sure the most hated man on television will climb up the rankings soon enough.

31. Minotaur (0-1) -4

Somehow made it to the end bell against SawBlaze, a sign of the veteran’s durability. Hopefully something to build on this season.

32. Bloodsport (0-1) -4

There’s no shame in losing to Whiplash, and Justin Marple’s bot should hopefully be in for another decent run this season.

33. Free Shipping (0-1) -4

Not quite the next-day delivery performance the team would have been hoping for, but still gave us a good ol’ fashioned slugfest against Blacksmith.

34. Kraken (0-1) -4

Got a nice nibble out of Rotator, but was ultimately left toothless from a barnstorming comeback. Please pray that they have an easier run-in this season.

35. Valkyrie (0-1) -4

Still looks as dangerous as ever, but a meandering loss to P1 in its opening fight wasn’t the ideal way to start its season. Not currently flying high, but hopefully that will change.

36. DUCK! (0-1) -4

I still don’t know what to think of new DUCK!. I miss its wholesome little face and ability to give no f*cks about shoving its beak into someone’s face. Admittedly Witch Doctor is never an easy opponent, so maybe we’ll see what this new configuration can do against someone… less good.

37. Ghost Raptor (0-1) NEW ENTRY

Oh boy, my favourite bot ever is back! If no-one was looking forward to Ghost Raptor’s return last season, I’m pretty sure even less people are excited to see it back this season. I jest, I don’t know what my vendetta is against Ghost Raptor, maybe I’m just still salty from it using the hockey stick to beat Icewave nearly seven years ago. Yup, nearly SEVEN. Anyhow, I actually have more respect for the team now after helping their opponents Glitch out to get them battle ready, before essentially handing them the fight by freeing them from the wall multiple times. They had their whole weapons system disabled, and I’m not sure their outdated design will carry them far into the bracket this season. Prove me wrong, Chuck.

38. Lucky (0-1) NEW ENTRY

I loved all the hype about how incredible Lucky’s new driver, despite the fact he’s never driven a combat robot before. And his decision to free Tantrum from the wall backfired pretty spectacularly. Lucky has always been a bot that has promised much but delivered sparingly little, so who knows, maybe this new driver will bear fruits in time. For now, they have to settle for a spot in 38th.

39. Yeti (0-1) -5

Drops down 5 due to the new entrants. Still hurting after its dismantling at the hands of Mad Catter.

40. Cobalt (0-1) -5

See above, but swap out Mad Catter for Fusion and you have yourselves an explanation.

41. Gigabyte (0-1) -5

Yeah things get pretty repetitive for a bit here. Drops down the rankings at 0-1 after its defeat to Uppercut.

42. Icewave (0-1) -4

The legend sits 42nd in the rankings after losing to Black Dragon.

43. Deadlift (0-1) -4

Started out so well against Jackpot, but things quickly unravelled. It did show signs of promise, though.

44. HUGE (0-1) -4

My beloved slips further down the rankings, and needs a convincing win to get back into bracket contention.

45. Subzero (0-1) -4

Maybe its first televised fight will improve its ranking, whenever that may be.

46. Malice (0-2) -9

It’s been a really rocky start for Malice after looking impressive in their debut season last year. They were outclassed by Tantrum in their first fight, and were resoundingly KO’d by Jackpot this week without really showing much resistance. They still have the potential to bring things back in their upcoming fights, but they need a big upturn in fortunes to make the bracket at this rate.

47. Blade (0-1) NEW ENTRY

The first ever South Korean entrant on the show didn’t exactly get off to a flyer, did it? Blade seemed to be suffering from drive issues from the get-go in its fight against Skorpios, leaving it at the mercy of its opponent. The weapon still looks like it could cause some juicy amounts of destruction, so hopefully if they get their drive issues fixed we’ll see bot parts begin to fly.

48. Defender (0-1) -6

A disappointing start for Jason Vasquez, who’ll be hoping for an easier time of things in his next fight.

49. Hijinx (0-1) -6

Everyone’s favourite pink owl slips further down the rankings after an underwhelming start against Mammoth.

50. Overhaul (0-1) NEW ENTRY

It’s been a while since we saw Overhaul in the Battlebox, at to say its return was triumphant would be a terrible piece of misinformation. Everything was over in a trice as Ribbot mockingly tore into its front lifter and left it in a crumpled mess. Overhaul didn’t really put up much resistance. I’m not sure how well it will be able to recover from this, but we’ll see.

51. Switchback (0-1) -7

It’s still a pretty cool design, but its opening fight left much to be desired.

52. Slammo! (0-1) -7

Now no longer sponsored by a lawnmower, the lack of the letter ‘w’ is ultimately proving costly so far this season.

53. Pain Train (0-1) -7

The train has not yet reached its destination, due to being upside down and also on fire.

54. Pardon My French (0-1) -7

Pardon my French, but are we even going to see this point again?

55. Rampage (0-1) NEW ENTRY

“We’re hoping to make it to the end of every fight this season,” Rampage’s captain boldly claims before their opening fight against Retrograde. Thirty seconds later they were upside down without a wheel. Sadly, that’s one claim that hasn’t come to fruition. And I don’t think we’ll be seeing much improvement as the season goes in. If we ever see them back in the box as well.

56. Rusty (0-1) -8

Rusty continues to do his duty by holding up the rest of the chasing pack, like the absolute legend that he is. Go on, Rusty.

And there we have it, everyone. 56 bots all ranked and rated, and I’m sure there’s plenty for everyone to mull and disagree over. That’s what the comments are for, after all! Everything will probably look very different after the next round of battles, but for now let’s all just sit back and contemplate how the bracket may look at this current stage. It’s not like there’s much else to do anyway.

As usual, thanks very much for reading my fellow comrades, and have a wonderful day.

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