This drama is mainly about the events of Season 7/World Championship 7 (WC7), the season of Battlebots that aired in 2023. Big spoilers for the season inbound, including the overall winner, along with spoilers of the outcomes and winners of previous seasons.
I will try my hardest to be unbiased which is hard because I am extremely biased and any attempt to be unbiased could only come across as enlightened centrism. I will simply try to keep the bias to a manageable level.
In case you don't know, Battlebots (well, combat robotics, but Battlebots is the most well-known and publicized event by an order of magnitude) is a... sport? Game? Hobby? Lifestyle? Where the goal is to throw two robots of a comparable weight against each other, with the goal to destroy each other. Battlebots itself is in the heavyweight category, with a 250 lb weight limit per robot. Other popular weight classes (relatively popular - heavyweight is the only televised one) are antweight (1 lb), beetleweight (3 lb), hobbyweight (12 lb), and lightweight (30 lb.) Battlebots itself airs on Discovery, generally with a main season and a spinoff season each year.
If you watched Battlebots back in the late 90s when it was on Comedy Central, you might remember robots that were basically big wedges pushing each other around a square and maybe occasionally taking a bit of armor off. That's not how it is anymore
. Bots are destructive, powerful, and great spectacles to watch fight. Seriously, you should watch Battlebots. It's on Discovery+ and
Max. If you don't want to spend the money,
Norwalk National Havoc Robotics League (NHRL)
has competitions every few months that are livestreamed for free on Youtube in the smaller weight classes.
In case it's not clear from the write-up, Battlebots is filmed usually in the fall, and the season airs spring the next year. So all of the events in this write-up occurred over a 2-week period in OctobeNovember 2022, but only were public drama as the episodes aired January-May 2023. Much like any reality/game show, all the builders, production, etc. knew the outcome of the season before anything aired, there's just millions of dollars of NDAs.
Something interesting about Battlebots that might surprise those unfamiliar with it is the culture. While teams work as hard as they can to reduce the other robot to splintered scrap in the box, back in the pits everyone is super awesome and nice and kind and helpful - a frequent occurrence is going to the pit of the bot you just took apart and seeing if there is any way you can help with the rebuild.
The classic example
is in the 2021 season, when the iconic Witch Doctor
's weapon disk kept breaking due to poor quality steel. They were scrambling to find material and resources to machine a new disk, when a ton of teams came together to save their season.
(yes, that's a trans Battlebot) lent them their pickup truck, to go pick up steel from a nearby supplier who was found by the captain of Team Blacksmith
They needed to recreate the failure to figure out was wrong, so Team Shatter
(the biggest, strongest hammer-bot in the competition) took their robot to the test box to try and break a disk.
They took the steel to the nearby build space of Team Chomp
, who stayed up all night on their waterjet to cut new disks (the new disks worked well, by the way.)
After the season, they still didn't know for sure what the cause was, so they worked with Team Hypershock
to create a dummy test robot, modeled after the very durable robot (and future 2022 champs) Tantrum
, they could test the old disks on. They then sent the broken disks to a materials science lab run by a friend of the captain of Team Tantrum to perform materials analysis.
Many of these teams had fought Witch Doctor in the past, others would fight them in the future. But that doesn't matter - in robot combat, everyone is friends outside the box.
Every year there are of course rookie bots competing for the first time. Sometimes from veteran teams and builders, such as last year's Blip
(from the creators of Tantrum), or this year's RIPperoni
, from former members of the teams behind Uppercut
, but just as often from new builders, at least new to heavyweight (almost nobody starts out with with the robots that can cost as much as a new car.)
One of these 'new-to-heavyweight' rookies last year was Riptide
, captained by Ethan Kurtz (the guy with the "you know I had to do it to em" pose.) Ethan had found a good amount of success previously with the beetleweight Rival
, and Riptide was basically Rival writ 80 times bigger. Riptide had a pretty good first season, winning 2 out of their 3 qualifying fights and making it to the quarterfinals before losing to the extremely good SawBlaze
No real controversy, aside from a false start and early hit on HUGE
in their first fight - written off as "I'm fighting a heavyweight on Battlebots for the first time" nerves, no hard feelings from anyone, not even HUGE. They also gave fan-favorite (formerly) indestructible brick Duck!
such a bad thrashing that Duck! permanently retired after that fight (Duck! was having a bad year anyway, that fight was just the icing on the cake.)
Their success led to them co-winning Rookie of the Year alongside Glitch
, who won an amazing 7 fights in a row, a feat only done before by 3-time championship winner and undisputed GOAT Bite Force
(Glitch had to bow out of the tournament because their bot had taken irreparable damage despite the victories, but it's possible they could have extended it even further.) Riptide became well known for Ethan screaming "LET'S GO!" (or sometimes, "LET'S F------ GO"!", giving the censors a bit of a workout and annoying production) after big wins.
So coming into season 8, their sophomore year, hopes are high for Riptide and people want to see this breakout star do well, right? After all, there's no big controversy in their funding or anything, is there?
Stan is the bald dude next to Ethan in the team picture. He's Ethan's dad, and also one of the main sponsors for the team through his company BeCourageous. Where did Stan Kurtz get his money to sponsor a big team? Well, he once had a company named RevitaPOP. RevitaPOP made vitamin B12 lollipops. If you know anything about 'alternative medicine,' this is where you say "oh no."
Stan Kurtz was once upon a time the president of Generation Rescue. Yes, that Generation Rescue
, the Jenny McCarthy 'vaccines-cause-autism' one. He was instrumental in getting the 'movement' off the ground in the first place - I even seem to recall seeing a link to a talk he did where he said he was backstage for McCarthy's interview with Larry King, but I'm not about to sift through hours of his horrid talks and speeches to find it.
Stan Kurtz sold lollipops that he claimed cured autism, autism that he and his organization claimed was caused by vaccines. In fact, he claimed they even cured his son Ethan's autism! Remember this when you read about Ethan's behavior - it's not an excuse, but "autistic but prevented from going to any kind of therapy or anything because it would make his dad look like a liar" is certainly an explanation.
Let me divest into opinion for a sec. Stan Kurtz is evil. There is a direct line between the actions of Stan Kurtz promoting vaccine denalism and snake oil cures, and dead children. Fuck Stan Kurtz. Every other problem with Team Riptide could be overlooked if they did not have this dude as their primary sponsor (which necessarily would require replacing Ethan as captain, because you can't separate him from his dad financially.) Okay, back to the writeup.
But put a pin in "Riptide's captain and his dad are antivaxxers" - it's a surprise tool that will help us later.
Riptide in WC7
Fight 1: Glitch
Aside from that, people didn't have that much of an opinion on Riptide going in to WC7 (and even that wasn't too widely known until partway through the season.) Generally, there was a feeling of "let's see if they can keep it up" - often a lot of very promising rookie bots have weak second seasons. They started the season fighting Glitch, to see who was truly better. One hit, weapon-on-weapon, and Glitch fucking died. Upside down, weapon not spinning, no way to self-right.
Team Glitch asked Riptide to hit them again try to flip them back over, maybe knock some life back into the bot. Not an uncommon thing, but sometimes it backfires. Riptide did, launched Glitch across the box, and now Glitch was super
-dead. Instant, extremely decisive knockout for Riptide. No drama yet.
Fight 2: MaD CatTer
Now on to the second fight. This one was against MaD CatTer
, consisting of community college professor Martin Mason (goatee in the middle) and his students. Martin Mason is known for his intentionally cheesebally and over-the-top Macho Man imitation/homage, with lots of pointing at the camera and saying "Oh yeah!" Also by all regards the nicest man on planet Earth and one of the most beloved figures in combat robotics.
Of note is MaD CatTer's driver, Calvin Iba (guy beneath Martin's pointing hand.) Calvin Iba is one of the few builders better known for his smaller robot - his robot Lynx
is the winningest beetleweight of all time, with an incredible 11
tournament wins, 8 undefeated, and an overall record of 86-11 as of December 2022 (and several events since then, but I can't find overall fight records of those events.) Now, Lynx is a very similar design to Rival (and therefore Riptide) - Lynx predates Rival by a few months, but the design is relatively generic and common at lower weight classes so it's not exactly plagarism.
This is relevant because Battlebots production tried to stir up drama, painting Calvin as angry that Ethan copied his bot and scaled it up to 250lb before Calvin could himself. For what it's worth Calvin did play into it a bit (he brought Lynx to the fight), but by all regards there aren't really any serious hard feelings about that. "Beater bars" (the weapon style of Riptide/Lynx/Rival) predate all three bots. Worth noting that Rival lost to Lynx
in a brutal slugfest in the semifinals match of NHRL a few years ago, so maybe Ethan had a bit of a revenge arc more than anything.
On to the fight. MaD CatTer is a pretty serious bot - not most people's favorite to win it all, but a 'serious contender for semifinals' kind of bot - so nobody knew how this would go. It was back and forth for... about 10 seconds, then Riptide got one good hit and did not let up. MaD CatTer got taken apart like they never had before, left a smoking mess, stuck sideways against the arena wall
, knocked out within a minute. Riptide then drove around a bit and punted pieces of MaD CatTer around the box, which got them a warning from the ref for being unsafe and for doing unnecessary damage to perfectly salvageable components of MaD CatTer. The team apologized later for that, saying they wouldn't do it again. Remember that.
Okay, two rapid knockouts against serious bots. Riptide is definitely not suffering from the sophomore curse. But in the post-fight interview, we did get a little taste of Ethan being a bit of a jerk - basically dismissed Calvin/Lynx as worse Riptide, and put his hand over Martin's mouth
(without Martin's permission) as a way of saying "shut up wrestler man!" Could have been funny, but it came across as somewhat mean-spirited and Martin clearly was not cool with it (and Martin Mason is not a sore loser - he spends almost every post-fight interview gushing about how good the other robot is, even if MaD CatTer loses.) Production asked Calvin what he thought, and he said (while holding Lynx) "well, I designed this robot to be unbeatable, it's a great robot to base it off of. Good job." Good comeback.
Fight 3: Captain Shrederator Captain Shrederator
is a longtime veteran, being one of the few robots (alongside Witch Doctor, Hypershock, and Lock-Jaw
) who has competed in all 7 seasons of the reboot. And they've competed for even longer - under various names and throughout various small tweaks, Captain Shrederator is basically the same robot as Phrizbee
, from original Battlebots Season 3.0 in 2001. They're not exactly good
by any modern standard, to be honest, but they're fun and an institution of the show. Worth noting that leading up to this fight, Nick Nave (son of Shrederator captain Brian Nave and a member of the team) had been hinting at possible controversy around this fight for a few weeks beforehand on the subreddit, so people were ready for some shit.
So going in, everyone expects Riptide to win. Here's a bot that made MaD CatTer look like a middleweight, versus a team with, at the time, a 6-18 career record. Riptide can't be complacent because even Shrederator can do some damage if you let it (by some metrics, Shrederator may have the most powerful weapon in the competition), but it's their fight to lose. Ethan Kurtz explains his strategy in an interview before the fight - get some big hits that flip Shrederator over. Once they're upside-down, they can't self-right and they'll be counted out. Makes sense, a solid, quick, safe, easy way to win. Well, watch the fight here if you can
If you can't, I will summarize: It starts off with Shrederator dodging Riptide and spinning up, until eventually Riptide gets a solid hit that breaks a piece of Shrederator's shell off and destabilizes them. One more big hit from Riptide and Shrederator lands upside-down - it's over. Well, no. Riptide then goes in and hits them again before they can be counted out. And again. And again. And again. At this point Shrederator is basically completely dead, but it's still able to spin. Shrederator's team calls over to Riptide "yo, stop it we're dead already." Riptide hits Shrederator again. Riptide's weapon operator tells Ethan to hit him again. And so he does. And one more time, as sparks fly out of Shrederator's pulverized electronics. Riptide leaves Shrederator dead on the floor, as they go and, you guessed it, punt shrapnel around the box. At this point the referee has to physically take the controller from Ethan (while the rest of team Riptide tries to stop the ref.)
Of course this is a KO for Riptide, but in doing so they did around $10,000 worth of extra, unnecessary damage to Shrederator, and almost the entire bot had to be thrown out and rebuilt from spares. Riptide was not apologetic (and in fact later Ethan would gloat to the camera over how Team Shrederator hadn't even tried to rebuild their bot.) No members of Team Riptide helped Shrederator rebuild either, though one did offer. (It wasn't Ethan, Stan, or the weapon operator Sid.)
To say this was controversial to the community would be lying. Controversy requires some argument or debate. There was none - everyone
thought Riptide went way too far. Riptide later tried to say "we interpreted their spinning as intent to keep fighting, and we couldn't hear them asking us to stop." Which was seen by most of the community as a load of crap, since Ethan had said to the camera that he didn't need to do those late hits just before the fight, and teams are bantering with each other in fights all the time. Riptide was formally warned by the ref again for this fight.
At this point, the editors I guess realized that controversy sells. In almost every remaining episode of the season, even ones where Riptide didn't fight, they had some clip of Riptide, or Ethan, or something else to rub in "these guys are really mean and have a good bot, wHaT iF tHeY wIn???" Very much a 'whenver Riptide's not on screen, all the other robots should be asking "Where's Riptide?"
' situation. It got old very fast (read: instantly.)
Fight 4: Black Dragon
You want to talk about beloved teams, you have to mention Black Dragon
. This Brazilian team is known for two things - their plush duck, which they won in a claw machine the first time they came to the US for a competition and have kept as a good luck charm ever since, and their durability - they had gone a near-record 24 matches without ever getting knocked out, winning all of those fights or losing by judge's decision. Leading up to this fight, Battlebots kept having segments showing how Black Dragon had almost surpassed Bite Force for the "most fights without a KO" streak (Bite Force was never KO'd in its entire 4-season career, going 26-1 with 1 lost JD.) Of course, then they had to fight Riptide.
This fight was probably the least controversial Riptide fight of the season - you can watch it here
. Riptide went in and did not let up, unrelenting, leading to the Brazilian bot suffering their first ever KO in under a minute. Riptide was actually pretty chill in the post-fight interview, very respectful towards Black Dragon - I guess that ref warning stuck. For now. With that, Riptide advanced to 4-0 in the qualifiers, and ended up securing themselves the #2 overall seed (behind the undefeated Brazilian monster Minotaur
, a favorite to win it all every season and the season 3 runner-up.)
Round of 32: Shatter
For those who don't know, Battlebots has a series of qualifying fights (this year, 4 fights per bot) to determine, out of the contenders (50 this year), which 32 get to compete in the tournament for the Giant Nut, and where they will be seeded. As the #2 seed, Riptide got to fight the #31 seed - hammer-bot Shatter, who you saw earlier helping Witch Doctor. Now, let me not mince words - Shatter was fucked. To paraphrase a comment I saw, "If Shatter drives like a god, gets the most perfect hammer shots ever, and in general is the best a hammer has ever looked in the history of hammers... they will still lose." There was no way Shatter could ever, ever
win, barring some kind of catastrophic self-induced failure from Riptide. But damn it, Shatter captain Adam Wrigley was sure as hell going to try.
Now, for more info, the bots have rules that govern what you can do. There's a lot, but 2 are relevant - strict 250 lb weight limit, and the tip speed of a spinning weapon cannot exceed 250 mph. Bots are weighed before each fight to confirm the weight limit, and all bots with spinners have to do tip speed tests in the test box. After the weigh-in, you cannot modify or work on your bot in any way without the approval of production and safety. Not for anything. Maybe a sticker if you want.
So when a Shatter team member found Riptide working on their bot
in the tunnel leading from the pits just before the fight, questions were had, and team Shatter demanded Riptide be reweighed and tip speed retested (there were rumors in the pits that they were spinning faster than 250mph.) The team later explained they were attaching a plastic hammer to the robot to mimic Shatter (teams doing funny decorative mods to their bot to mimic the other bot is a longstanding tradition.) All evidence seemed to point to that being the case, so nobody thinks they were lying about it, but it still warranted a reweigh. My opinion - that's fine, but tell production. If people think you're going to do something illegal, and you do something legal but in a way that looks illegal, don't be surprised when people think you're doing something illegal.
I will note that the show made a big deal out of how when Riptide was weighed before they were 'caught,' they weighed in at 250 lb, and the re-weighing said they were 248. There was some concern from Shatter about that, not helped by Stan Kurtz being kind of smug back to them. In response to one Shatter member asking "Why is it 248 now and 250 before?", Stan responded "You're right, there's something wrong. We made it lighter." Now, the thing with this is that there are multiple scales, they're not extremely precise, and if anyone has ever worked with industrial scales before you know how easily they come out of calibration. Some builders have said that whether or not the AC was on could add a pound of weight from the airflow. The "250lb" scale was not the same as the "248lb" scale as well. Generally, nobody really
thinks there is something up with the weight, but working on the bot post-weigh-in absolutely warrants a reweigh, no matter who it is.
Riptide complained a lot about it, to the point where the word "whiney" comes to mind. You messed up, teams are meant to tell production before they add decorative stuff and you didn't, so you need to be reweighed. You've already pissed people off in the past so don't be surprised when they give you a bit more scrutiny. Take your lumps, apologize, act like adults, and maybe people will give you the benefit of the doubt next time. Instead, there was a lot of "oh boo is me, we're being discriminated against" - a direct quote from Ethan is "their paranoia is affecting our performance, I think it's really uncool that they did this." Granted, if the scale drifted the other way and they had to lose 2lb of armor to satisfy the arbitrary scale drift, I would get it more, but as it is they just look, well, whiney.
At this time, unbeknownst to anyone until they revealed it on a livestream, Team Whyachi (the team behind the powerful flipper Hydra
, engine of (self-)destruction Fusion
, and Comedy Central-era legend Son of Whyachi
, who had the pit next to Riptide, was asked by production to put a spy camera up to make sure everything was above board. Allegedly they also began doing analysis of the audio and video of the actual fights, to make sure teams (read: one team) weren't cheating and spinning faster than the "maximum speed" they did in the test box.
However, aside from the (explainable, acceptable) scale drift, Riptide was not found to be cheating with tip speed or anything else. Shatter accepted this without complaint - they just wanted to be sure. So, that's out of the way. Ethan basically said "they are paranoid and are trying to ruin us so we will crush them" - fair enough, I suppose. Here's the fight
(note: this video includes the entire 'weigh-in' drama before the fight if you want to watch it instead of just reading about it.) For what it's worth, Shatter lasted longer than anyone yet against Riptide - almost 2 minutes - but it went the way everyone expected. The most unexpected thing was in the post-fight, where Ethan basically said "Adam is a paranoid loser" (alongside, allegedly, some more personal insults that got cut), then went in for a "sporting" handshake. Unsurprisingly, Adam refused it.
Now, Adam is basically the "union rep" for the builders - he's the guy chosen (by the builders) to represent them when Battlebots is thinking about changing the rules. He is a very widely respected guy and is by all accounts very sporting and nice. So when you've pissed him off enough that he refuses the handshake (only the second refused handshake in modern Battlebots history, as far as I am aware), you know you fucked up. But either way, Riptide is on to the round of 16.
Round of 16: Hypershock
You saw Hypershock earlier. They're quite good - definitely a contender, though generally not going to be anyone's main pick to win it all. This year, they were the #18 seed after a rough set of qualifiers, fighting 2021 champs End Game
, 2021 runner-up Whiplash
, perennial contender SawBlaze, and the confusingly fast Claw Viper
(seriously watch this
, look how fast that boy is.) But after a solid win over #15 seed Lucky
, they were on to the round of 16.
When I say Hypershock is a fan favorite, I mean they are the
fan favorite - between their iconic style, aggressive driving, and captain Will Bales's humor and charisma, it's probably not wrong to say Hypershock is the most popular bot and team around. People love Hypershock, and people don't love Riptide, so this fight had a lot of "save us, O-Will Bales Kenobi, you're our only hope" energy with the community. Leading up to this, Will said in an interview that Riptide was good, but every team can't be good forever, and that someday Ethan will experience, in Will's words, a "humbling event."
But Hypershock wasn't the odds-on favorite here - Will Bales's flashy driving tends to lead to errors, and against something as nasty as Riptide, any error is death. The full fight isn't uploaded, but here's a clip
of the post-fight highlight reel. Will started out doing a 'box rush' (charging straight at the other bot as soon as the fight starts), only to attempt to dodge to the side. Unfortunately, this led to him powersliding directly into Riptide's weapon, losing a wheel, and getting flipped over.
Now, the thing with vertical spinners in Battlebots is they spin 'up' - this means that the outer side goes up and the inner side goes down, so you can brace your own bot against the floor and send the other one flying. Now Hypershock is upside down, effectively spinning 'down,' so the energy from hits pushes the other bot down and themselves up. Riptide is spinning 'up' as normal. Both of these are extremely powerful weapons. Both want to send Hypershock into the air. So what happens when they collide? The energy of both weapons goes into sending Hypershock flying
up over 25 feet and slamming into the ceiling of the Battlebox. Remember that that thing weighs 250 pounds. To quote Will in the post-fight interview, "nobody has ever been hit like that before." Much to the chagrin of Hydra captain Jake Ewert, who had the goal of being the first-ever bot to send another bot into the ceiling (and came within inches in their fight against Deathroll
), Riptide made Battlebots history here.
The rest of the fight goes as expected at this point and Hypershock is KO'd, with Riptide moving into the quarterfinals. Sorry Will, you aren't the humbling event this time.
It's the final episode of the season - the quarterfinals, semifinals, and finals are all in one episode. People are spooked because Riptide is a incredible, powerful bot built and driven by shitty people, and nobody wants them to win but they might. But to go any further, they have to beat Copperhead.
. This snake-themed bot is probably best known for getting a new captain almost every year, and this year it's Luke Quintal in charge for his first time. They just came off of an insanely dominant upset
over 2021 champs End Game.
Luke has said that he was too focused on Copperhead to pay attention to the controversy, so he became aware of it when, leading up to this fight, builders kept coming up to him and whispering in his hear "dude, you have to beat Riptide. You have
to beat them. You might be our last hope." He's just a first-year captain/driver, with the oldest bot in the competition (Copperhead has had the same two frames for its entire 4-year career - this is the longest any frame has competed in the history of modern Battlebots without replacement), who's had to have back-to-back fights against rookie of the year Ripperoni, 2018 Most Destructive winner ROTATOЯ
, and End Game. No pressure.
Now, people have tried ways to beat Riptide. You can't just tank their hits with a durable bot (Black Dragon.) You can't outdrive them with fancy footwork (Hypershock.) But something nobody has been
insane enough to try is to go weapon-to-weapon on purpose
to break Riptide's weapon. Copperhead just went weapon-to-weapon with End Game and broke theirs. Copperhead is durable enough to take those huge hits Riptide deals out. So their strategy is to just go berserk until something breaks. But there's one major plot twist left.
Remember how I said the Kurtzes are anti-vaxxers? Well, the pandemic is still going on. In order to get into the pits, you either had to be double-vaxxed or
test negative every day. Well, there's no confirmation that Ethan was or was not vaxxed (but let's be real), but guess what? In the greatest Chekhov's gun in Battlebots history, he tested positive for COVID the day of the Copperhead fight. Riptide is out their driver for their biggest fight ever.
Other builders have confirmed that this was not the first or only time that team members had to miss days due to testing positive, but previous times either 1) did not involve the drivers, or 2) were in the qualifying rounds where fights could be postponed to following days. But neither was the case this time. Now, this is really a shitty situation for Riptide, and I do feel some degree of pity for them - what a thing to happen. But at the same time, lmao.
Riptide has to spend most of the day deciding who would drive the robot in the fight. The first person they ask? Jack Barker, driver of End Game and 2021 world champion. Jack agreed - can you blame him? Riptide is a hell of a bot, probably super fun to drive, and who knows, maybe he could win another Giant Nut. This got as far as Jack driving Riptide around the test box, before Luke found out and was like "hang on, no. He's not on your team. It's not fair that you can just go to the best driver in the pits and ask them to drive for you." Production agreed and hastily made a new rule where the driver has to be a member of the team. This all was not in the episode, and was only revealed by Luke Quintal after the season aired.
Team Riptide then deliberated between the several members of the team who might stand a chance. They eventually decide on team member Felix Jing, who's an award-winning Vex Robotics driver but has never driven a heavyweight before. Felix seemed to be a nice enough guy, and pretty humble. However, in the deliberations over who would drive, they lose time and are unable to replace their damaged weapon from the Hypershock fight.
So the fight. Riptide box rushes Copperhead, and the first weapon-to-weapon sends Copperhead flying. Luke's bot is still going, though, and goes in for another clash. This goes on for a few hits, until a massive hit sends Copperhead flying up and Riptide flying back - but when they come to, Copperhead's weapon is spinning... and Riptide's weapon is cracked down the middle
, exactly what Copperhead was aiming for.
Copperhead does not let up and keeps hitting, eventually ripping about a quarter of Riptide's weapon off completely
. However, the damage from the last 4 years of fighting added up. Those big hits from Riptide were the final straw - one of Copperhead's two wheels just falls off
. Copperhead can still move, just about, on just one wheel, but suddenly this fight got a lot closer. They keep hitting Riptide, but it goes to the judges after the full 3 minutes.
It's a split decision. Battlebots is scored on an 11-point system - 5 points for damage, and 3 each for aggression and control.
All three judges gave Copperhead three damage points to Riptide's two and Riptide two control points to Copperhead's one.
The first judge scored aggression 2-1 for Copperhead. 6-5 Copperhead.
The second judge scored aggression 2-1 for Riptide. 6-5 Riptide.
The third judge scored aggression 2-1 for the winner... Copperhead!
They did it, they saved the goddamn universe. We will not have to live in a world where the ur-anti-vaxxer and his dickhead kid win Battlebots. Everyone is fucking ecstatic. I cheered. The audience cheered. God probably cheered. And boy, did the pits cheer
- some builders have said this was the biggest celebration in the pits they had ever seen. Tim Rackley of Monsoon
(big lad with the flag) apparently was picking Luke up and carrying him around the pits cheering. Riptide is out
It's a pity Ethan wasn't there to experience his 'humbling event' in person, but it happened. He was there on a video call on a tablet - apparently, production did ask him how he felt and he went on a 5-minute rant about how the team was being forced to face jealousy and adversity because they had to get reweighed. The entire rant was cut from the episode that aired. I've seen conflicting reports if he said "if I was there we would have won," but it would be in character if he did.
Team Riptide used their appeal (each team gets one) to ask the judges to re-review the fight - they did (absolutely fair - you have nothing to lose, anyone should appeal in this situation), and as though to rub it in even more, the sole judge who ruled for Riptide changed his mind
about Riptide's aggression, giving Copperhead a unanimous JD. The saga of Riptide in WC7 ends here.
There was zero drama of any kind for the rest of the season (all 3 fights of it.) All the fights were great, clean fights between respected and respectful teams and robots. Copperhead ended up losing to HUGE in the semi-finals - no surprise or shame there, HUGE is designed to be invincible to bots like Copperhead. HUGE ended up facing the mighty SawBlaze in the finals, and in probably the best finals match in combat robotics history, SawBlaze managed to win a unanimous JD, giving SawBlaze captain Jamison Go
the Giant Nut.
Literally zero people were unhappy with this - both Jamison and HUGE captain Jonathan Schultz are some of the nicest, most genuine, humble builders in the sport, and going into the finals it was very much a "no matter who wins we all win" kind of thing. Both bots are also "non-meta" - "meta" being the general form of bot that Hypershock, Riptide, Witch Doctor, Copperhead, etc. are, a compact vertical spinner - seasons 3-6 saw meta bots win both first place and runner-up, so people were excited to see a finals match with something new on both sides.
This was very recent, so no news if Riptide will be invited back next year. I would be shocked if they weren't, though - controversy sells, and regardless of how bad the team is, the robot is a killing machine that makes for incredible spectacles. There is allegedly a "sportsmanship rule" being added next year - it's a pity that something that has gone unspoken for decades has to codified in rules because of the actions of one team, but hopefully it will help. Between unethical sponsors, destroying fan favorite bots, being rude both inside and outside the box, cheating allegations, and a stunning lack of humility, Riptide really checked all the boxes in the 'bad guys' field this year.
I could say "the viewing community is willing to give Riptide one more chance to apologize and redeem themselves" but that would be a lie. For the most part, the subreddit, main Discord, etc. are all sick and tired of ever seeing the team again, and would love nothing more than for some cool, nice builder to hijack the bot so we can have cool robots and
cool people. I don't know how the builders feel - I imagine that they're probably not quite as vehemently opposed to the team on average, but there's probably no love lost.
I enjoyed writing this up quite a lot, because it really was a classic "villain defeats the main good guys, but then the underdog comes out of nowhere and saves the day" story. Also Battlebots rules. Feel free to ask me anything about the show, or any bots, or if you want to see some cool bots that I didn't include. And seriously, watch Battlebots, it's so good. Check out /battlebots
- it's the off-season, so the shitposts are about to get real good. I'm running out of characters so the collection of miscellaneous facts I originally had stuck on the end of this writeup is going to be in the comments.
So to keep it short and sweet I've wanted a Vita for a very long time. I'm a huge Sony fan but I've never really been able to buy much. I would mostly be using Vita for remote play with my PS3/4, and PSP games I never got into.
Logically though, part of me feels I should go for something newer? Like an RP3+, especially since it has L3+R3 and analog triggers. I can get either for about the same price.
I have a Redmi note 8 pro I use for remote play with a DS4 clip which is great but bulky. Other grips seem pricey and idk if I want to shell for that. It also works wonders for PSP and below, but it's not the Vita, ya know?
I have a switch lite I was gifted that I can trade in for an even swap with the Vita, since I'm not huge on Nintendo exclusives I don't use it too much, but again it feels weird to step back technologically if that makes sense.
Looking for any help, anecdotal or otherwise. Thanks!
I have an expensive pax+ pen I want to bring to the show, but definitely do not want to have throw away or hide outside the venue. weeds legal in IL, theoretically this shouldn’t be an issue right? It is mostly metal and definitely sets off a metal detector so I hiding it on my person isn’t a great option. Curious what you guys think.
First of all - wow, what a trailer! After a couple of quick rewatches, I just had to get some initial thoughts down. I will try to stick to the facts of what can be seen and stay away from too much speculation for now.
The trailer opens with shots of Midgar burning and the reported stating a disaster caused by a tornado – possibly the tornado during the events in the singularity? The music is the Whisper battle theme from chapter 18.
Tifa confides in Aerith that as far as she’s aware, Cloud wasn’t in Nibehleim 5 years ago. This must be after Cloud tells the group his story of what happened there.
A man says that Hojo called the hooded men “shadows of the man”, and that they are connected to Sephiroth. I do not recognise the voice. Could this be Vincent?
The hooded man chanting “Jenova” in the trailer is Cloud.
Sephiroth is planting doubt in Cloud’s mind and trying to turn him against his friends. He is trying to convince Cloud that he saw Tifa die in Nibelheim, so who is the imposter he is travelling with? This makes the dialogue between Cloud and Tifa from last year’s trailer make much more sense. I love that Sephiroth is doubling down on his manipulations here in a way that wasn’t done in the original, but is entirely consistent with the story and Sephiroth’s methods.
The characters have low HP (less than 2k) during the Jenova encounter seen. I would guess this takes place on the boat, and the environment is changed just like in President Shinra’s office. The same voice from earlier (possibly Vincent) has a voiceover telling us more about what Jenova is and how she manipulates people. edit, it was pointed out to me that this voice is obviously Sephiroth, since he’s even on screen during it Cloud, Barret and Tifa are present for this fight.
When Jenova appears, Yuffie is terrified and runs away. I think she recognises this, or mistakes this, as the same darkness as she saw from Nero, which she obviously has good reason to fear. Seems like a great addition to her character arc if she has to overcome a new fear.
Characters have very low HP and MP in most scenes shown. Red has 1,383 HP in the mithril mines boss fight. It looks like we are getting a full level reset in Rebirth – at least in the game mode we are shown here.
Red’s unique ability is called “Vengeance mode”.
Aerith has a new unique ability called “Ward Shift”. Unclear is this is temporary and I did not see her Remake ability of Tempest in any clips.
The mithril element type boss is likely fought in Mithril Mines, and only Barret and Red are present in the clip shown. The music that starts here and continues through most of the rest of the combat in the trailer is a variation of the Valkyrie.
There is a boss fight against the Turks – Rude and Elena. Cloud, Tifa and Aerith are present in this fight. This also looks like a different area of Mithril Mines. Minor speculation – it looks like the party splits up for the mithril mines section and have different boss encounters.
The synergy buff is seen in some clips, and it looks like team attacks are available in various combinations. However, they may work differently than we saw in Intermission. In one clip it looks like Cloud and Barret use a team attack, but Barret has full ATB during it, so it looks like it did not cost ATB.
There is a new combat resource appearing as up to 5 pips under each characters ATB bar. This could be the resource used for combo attacks, or could be something to do with character swapping if that is possible.
The combo moves I picked out in the trailer were; Cloud + Barret, Yuffie + Red, and Aerith + Tifa.
When on foot, at some points the menu showed an action to “Call Chocobo” with R1. This was not available all the time, which makes sense as Chocobos would not be suitable in all environments.
Mounted Chocobo commands:
Direction pad up: Scent
Direction pad down: Scour
We are getting some kind of Chocobo searching minigame.
Looking forward to the next 6 months of theorycrafting and speculation!
So, I'm one of those people that until recently have supported Colleen.
I started watching her right when she announced her first pregnancy. I was still a teenager then and now I'm an adult (I'm 19 for context). I didn't watch much of Miranda but I watched almost every one of Colleen's vlogs. I could relate to her on various fronts such as living with anxiety and other mental health issues. She seemed so kind and genuine on camera that when the initial allegations came out, I didn't believe them. I should have. I could not believe that the same person I watched on the vlogs could be the same person that did these horrible things. I thought that this was a complicated situation, and since I didn't know these individuals in real life, I couldn't know the truth. Even when there was enough proof for these things to be believed.
I also found this subreddit a while ago. I would lurk and read posts, but I kept thinking that there must be some misinterpretation or taking things out of context. I still didn't like all the things Colleen did. I could agree with some of the comments about her posting her kids online, and then I started skipping the sections in her vlogs with her kids. It was strange to me that she seemed to not see or ignore comments asking about her putting her kids online when she appeared so thoughtful about many other aspects of her kids and her life. She seemed like such a great and thoughtful parent, so I don't know why she would put her kids online without their consent.
I don't know why but seeing the allegations come out the second time around, even seeing little clips, I suddenly believed it. I was still in a state of shock, and at times I thought that perhaps someone else wrote the messages and it wasn't Colleen. But what I am seeing is making more and more sense. Adam, if you're reading this, I'm so sorry for not believing you. I'm sorry for what you went through. Nobody should have to go through that. There's no possible excuse for Colleen's behavior. To people on this subreddit, even though I only lurked--I am sorry for not believing you guys either.
I also wanted to share my own experience because I recently went to one of her shows. The actual show was great, but not the meet and greet. I've never been to any other meet and greet so I have nothing to compare it to. The tickets (including the seats I found and the VIP meet and greet) were like 80 dollars for one person, and I got tickets for my friend and myself. The VIP meet and greet included a question and answer section, and then pictures with Colleen. I actually did read what you guys said about the meet and greet and you're right--it is rushed. Of course, I didn't time the picture session but it was probably like a minute or two. It was enough for my friend and I to say a sentence each to her and then get pictures. You do get a lot of pictures but that's because Kory just takes as many as he can while he has your phone. If they didn't come out great you were allowed to get back in line and re-take them, but I don't think anyone did that as we didn't want to inconvenience them. Is this normal for a meet and greet? There were a lot of people there, which is how I justified it. It just felt so rushed because you don't wanna be the person that holds up the line and takes time away from other people but that just made the interaction kind of stressful instead of nice. We also had to stay in the theatre for an hour while waiting for the show to start, we literally weren't allowed to go outside. I don't know if that's normal either, if you can, let me know.
TLDR: I'm sorry for not believing the allegations before. What matters is that I do now and I will no longer be supporting her.
I feel like the gameplay pacing is way too similar to MK11. I did not like MK11 because of how slow it was. I could be wrong but I wish Ed Boon did a more in depth breakdown of the gameplay. I'm going to be waiting for more info which we should be getting soon. Maybe the game is still being worked on?
One thing that does look promising is how there's more combo variety with air combos. Graphics look better. There was a clip they showed during the interview with Ed Boon where if you watch closely it seems the walking movement is faster and more fluid and they may have also brought back the running mechanic (unless it's just Kenshi who can run?) but if that running mechanic is universal then that would be great.
Hopefully we get to learn everything about the gameplay pretty soon. Right now I'm still worried and kind of underwhelmed because it didn't really look super different to me. I want to see a lot more fast paced gameplay and crazy combos. The kameo system looks to be really promising with how much it adds to the combos but I do wish we got a much longer breakdown on the gameplay.
As of right now I'm worried that it'll just be MK11 2.0
Hey everyone, I got a call back from a recruiter after going through an interview process and long story short, interview went great and they loved me and my experience however, they aren’t sure if Il be able to hit the ground running right away and they are interviewing a couple other candidates and will let me know next week. Basically said my experience doesn’t quite line up with the role and want to test the waters with some other people.
They also said they have “pipelined” me for any other opportunities that come up that more closely align with my skills.
Just seeing if any recruiters here can shed some light on this and if it’s A) it’s all bs , or B) they do like me and want to make sure there’s nobody else out there they can’t say no to before giving me the position.
In the title. The MC-707 looks great for drums, not bad for samples...but how good are the synth sounds? I've heard some decent stuff on YT, but I wonder just how deep the sound design possibilities go on this machine. If anyone knows of any particularly good YouTube clips/channels that show off the synth capabilities of the MC-707, that would be dope. Cheers fam.
To keep this brief: it took over a month for everything in my order to be shipped to me, and when I opened the bike box, I was a tad gobsmacked. Unlike the unboxing/assembly video, it wasn't carefully wrapped in foam, etc. It was stuffed in there with half the box clips missing, and no support for the front fork. The frame had brown paper stuffed around it, loosely taped on the frame, with some loosely tied brown twine, with cut pieces of teh twine in the bike box. Nothing protecting anything. In addition, the stem nut was stripped and couldn't be removed -- we even took the bike to a LBS, and they also couldn't get it removed.
So, I called Aventon CSR, and the CSR was a tad snarky and incredulous about what I told them, then promised a supervisor would call me back. That has been almost a week now. All I wanted is to be able to send it back and get a new bike. Now, I just want to send it back and get a refund.
I am really disappointed, especially after I've read on here how great Aventon CS is, which is one of the reasons I went with the brand. I did a few extra buys, too, so I dropped over 2.2K on everything.
Just as an FYI: I have been riding and building bikes for decades now, so this isn't some kind of noob freakout.
Anyone have any idea who else to call, or an email that isn't the general email?