"I hope they're not [all talk] ... I wonder if we'll be speaking highly of All Torque later."
— Jonathan Pearce in Series 2

All Torque was a Scottish competitor robot which competed in the UK robot combat game show Robot Wars. It was the first robot from Team Torque, and their only robot to enter multiple UK Championships, competing in Series 2-3. All Torque was also the team's most successful machine, reaching the Heat Final in its Series 2 debut and notably defeating Matilda in the Joust Trial along the way. It also reached the second round of its Series 3 Heat, where it lost to Thing 2, before losing to Razer in The First World Championship on a Judges' decision.

Versions of All Torque[edit | edit source]

All Torque (Series 2)[edit | edit source]

"Certainly the two 750W engine power, steel angle iron chassis, galvanised steel mesh and aluminium body and go kart wheels promise strength and speed. Two large steel spikes and grinding wheels say a lot about its potency."
Jonathan Pearce

All Torque in Series 2

The first version of All Torque was a box-shaped robot built from angle iron and scrap metal bodywork, with galvanised steel mesh sides. It was a four-wheel driven machine designed for superior pushing, thanks to its Go Kart wheels and Bosch GPA 750W motors, powered by two Drifit 25Ah batteries and controlled by 4QD NCC 70 motor controllers[1]. This allowed All Torque to drive at a high top speed of 20mph, making it one of the most effective pushers in Series 2, although it was still outmatched by King Buxton in its heat due to a lack of grip on the arena floor. All Torque was also armed with two steel spikes on a curved, ridged panel, although the robot lacked any sort of active weapon due to weight constraints.

"In the end we didn't do too badly. The main problem was our motor controllers. The NCC 70s just are not up to the job when it comes to skid steering. This them to reach near stall conditions all the time which in turn causes them to limit the current pretty soon. That's why we ended up in the pit (well that's my story). Always check your weight budget! We ended up having no weapons and a lot of rework trying to get under the weight budget."
— All Torque website on lessons learned from their first campaign[2]

All Torque (Series 3)[edit | edit source]

"We came back from the first Robot Wars with lots of ideas. As we sat down and thought through how we had done it seemed that the main problems were to do with lack of torque at the wheels for turning and pushing . This in turn seemed to be related to the motor controllers that we used. This time round we will be using controllers that are rated to 300 Amps per motor and upping the voltage to 36Volts."
— Team Torque website[3]

Main competition appearance, with the shovel equipped

The second design of All Torque (occasionally called All Torque 2[4]) was of similar shape to King Buxton, but with the custom made go-kart wheels enclosed in the machine, and a pushing scoop on the front, which was interchangeable with a snowplough surrounded by horizontal claws. According to its statistics board in The First World Championship, these claws served as an active crusher weapon, although they were not seen to move in battle, and Richie McBride simply called them 'spikes' in a pre-match interview.

The tyres of All Torque were also specially adapted with a unique suspension and for extra grip. It could also reach 20mph, driven by four QD speed controllers and was made of a stainless steel chassis with titanium armour. The batteries were updated to deliver more current at a lighter weight than the batteries in the original version. This robot was eliminated in Round 2, after its vulnerable receiver was damaged from being axed by Shunt.

Team Torque with All Torque in The First World Championship

All Torque was later altered when it represented the World Championship, with the Scottish flag painted onto its top panel. All Torque was equipped with seven layers of armour to protect itself against Razer; however, this did not help, and it still lost to the powerful crushing robot.

Etymology[edit | edit source]

The robot's name was a pun on all talk, combined with "torque", referencing the robot's high pushing power. The Series 3 version known as All Torque 2 on the team's website, but was simply known as All Torque on television.

Robot History[edit | edit source]

Series 2[edit | edit source]

"We were put in a program with some tough competition so we will make our excuses to start with! We were up against Robodoc and King Buxton which were both running with the same motor configuration as us. To start with we had some major problems with our mixer board that was used to drive the 4QD motors. We had major interference problems with them from out motors. The solution in the end was to implement hysteresis to get around individual signals being corrupted but to get us running we ended up using a 4QD mixer and 2 pots driven by 2 servos."
— All Torque website on a tough heat draw[5]

All Torque competed in Heat I, and was the last robot to run the Gauntlet out of the six competitors. This meant All Torque only needed to pass the 1.9m benchmark set by Cruella in order to qualify, a very achievable target.

All Torque is attacked by the House Robots

A burning All Torque is cut by Sir Killalot

All Torque chose the central route, and perfectly lined itself up at the bottom of the ramp. On a charge, All Torque easily cleared the ramp, but drove so quickly that it became stuck on top of one of the barrels it had pushed along the course. Stranded on the arena obstacle, Matilda closed in and pressed down on the top of All Torque with her tusks, allowing Sir Killalot to slot his lance under All Torque and pick it up. Sergeant Bash burnt the underside of All Torque using his flamethrower, and All Torque was briefly forced to retreat while avoiding the House Robots. Noticing a small opening, All Torque made one last charge towards the end zone, but was again trapped by Sir Killalot, which cut through the side mesh of All Torque while Matilda lifted it up. Fire started to pour out of the bottom of All Torque, and the time limit ran out without All Torque reaching the end zone. However, despite finishing the Gauntlet on fire, it had achieved the greatest distance out of all six robots by scoring 11.6m, and finished the round in first place.

"1st round we won with a swift dash to the line, I think they were a bit surprised by our speed. Unfortunately we got stuck on a barrel and were caught by Sergeant Bash and Killalot. The flames didn't do much damage and we made it through to the next round unscathed."
— All Torque website on the Gauntlet[6]

All Torque advanced to the Trial, which for Heat I was the Joust competition against Matilda. To prevent any further fire damage, the innards of All Torque were lined with aluminium foil.

All Torque slams into Matilda side-on

All Torque completes the Joust in first place

All Torque was the third to run the Joust and showed no fear of the event, charging head-first into Matilda and making contact with the House Robot far beyond the central podium in just a matter of seconds. Matilda had raised her tusks which allowed All Torque to get underneath the House Robot and push her back, with All Torque moving Matilda into a position where she was stuck sideways on the Joust platform. With a series of rams, All Torque was able to damage the fibreglass shell of Matilda and eventually move her aside so that All Torque could complete the Joust and crash into the gate in the end zone. With a second first-place finish in the row, All Torque was through to the Arena stage as a sudden heat favourite.

"The next game was Joust. This was right up our street a run at top speed against Matilda. We warned the cameraman that we would be coming through the end barrier but he thought we were joking. We accelerated towards Matilda and knocked her sideways about 3/4 of the way across the run. At that point we had won but we reversed back and gave her another wack for luck and pushed her out of the way, hitting the end barrier. Next stop the combat rounds."
— All Torque website on the Trial[7]

The Arena Semi-Final saw All Torque face off against Prometheus, which had struggled to reach this stage.

All Torque overpowers Prometheus

All Torque lines up to pit Prometheus

All Torque started aggressively, slamming straight into the side of Prometheus and denting its armour. Prometheus pointed its front lifter at All Torque, but there was more power in All Torque's drive, as it easily pushed Prometheus back. Although Prometheus fled from the attacking All Torque, it was already visibly damaged, and its cutting disc fell off. Prometheus then meandered over to the pit and became stuck on the lip, allowing All Torque to knock it straight in, winning by knockout and advancing to the Heat Final.

"Two quick, powerful robots. All Torque is slightly the lighter but speedier, King Buxton seems to have more maneuverability."
— Jonathan Pearce compares the Heat Finalists

In the Heat Final, it was faced with King Buxton, a robot which used a very similar internal setup to All Torque.

King Buxton pushes All Torque onto the pit

Both robots shot out of their starting areas almost instantly, but King Buxton turned so All Torque hit it side-on. The two then drove around each other for a few seconds, neither being able to hit the other. However, King Buxton eventually managed to successfully ram All Torque, and dented its front end. The two machines entered a pushing match where All Torque initially pushed King Buxton backwards, but All Torque could not gain enough grip and it was soon overpowered and pushed onto the edge of the pit. All Torque was then rammed by King Buxton a few more times before being tipped into the pit by Sir Killalot. As a result, All Torque fell at the Heat Final stage.

"The fight with Robodoc had left their [King Buxton's] motors practically red hot so we gave them some fans to cool them down for our round. We started off pretty even with us managing to push them back a few times. We were looking like we were able to push them when the tables were turned - exit stage left or in a pit in our case. Game Over."
— All Torque website on the Heat Final[8]

Series 3[edit | edit source]

Philippa Forrester: "All Torque, back again! Hello, what have you got to tell me about your robot, because it's changed quite significantly!"
Richie McBride: "Bigger, better, faster, stronger."
Philippa Forrester: "Is that it?"
Richie McBride: "That's enough, isn't it!"
— All Torque is introduced in the pits

Returning to the show in Heat N of the Third Wars, All Torque faced newcomer Crippler in the first round.

"We hope to smash into them at high speed, and push them into the pit!"
— Richie McBride

All Torque slams Crippler into the wall

All Torque forces Crippler into the pit

All Torque slammed straight into the slow Crippler right from the outset, although the tracked opponent held its ground and All Torque went spinning off to the side. Nevertheless, All Torque edged Crippler back into the wall, sustaining no damage from Crippler's limp axe attack. All Torque allowed Crippler to drive forward again, only to slam it straight back to where it came from, again shrugging off another axe blow. All Torque delivered another frontal charge and had gradually bent the front wedge of Crippler significantly. All Torque then delivered another slam to knock a loose piece off Crippler, before finally catching it side-on and ploughing it straight into the pit. All Torque had won the battle in just twenty-nine seconds, and easily advanced to the Heat semi-final.

"It's a quick, nifty robot with the snowplough, and immediately the bulldozer of All Torque pushing Crippler into the pit, and was was a very, very speedy end!"
— Jonathan Pearce

A quick and exciting battle against Thing 2 followed in the Heat semi-final.

All Torque and Thing 2 in close quarters

All Torque holds Thing 2 under Shunt's axe

All Torque charged straight for Thing 2 and buffeted it, keeping its momentum as it drove past, and then reversed back into Thing 2 with another knock. This allowed All Torque to slot its scoop straight under the front of Thing 2 and drive it straight into the arena wall. It maintained its advantage in close quarters, keeping its front pointed towards Thing 2 which only flailed about in response. When Thing 2 took a more offensive approach, it continually lifted its own wedge off the floor, putting it above All Torque's scoop on attempted attacks which led to All Torque pushing Thing 2 into the wall again. All Torque slammed into the rear of Thing 2 and kept it under pressure near the arena wall before one big slam between the two robots caused both to separate. All Torque next moved Thing 2 towards the CPZ, but ended up closer to Shunt itself. All Torque failed to get away, and although Thing 2 was axed by Shunt first, it pushed All Torque into the path of the House Robot, and although All Torque got away, it would then take an axe blow from Shunt after it returned to the CPZ to attack Thing 2.

"Splendid battle this, bumping and barging going on, ramming and shunting."
— Jonathan Pearce

A smoking All Torque continues to fight back

Shunt and Sgt. Bash trap All Torque

All Torque started to fall behind after this, and its ground clearance was exposed by Thing 2's wedge side-on, with All Torque being pushed through the CPZ of Sgt. Bash and into the arena wall atop the arena spikes. All Torque fought back by wedging under Thing 2, but lacked the power to push it away, and Thing 2 pressed it against the wall. The two machines retreated to the centre of the arena, and engaged in a stalemate pushing match which Thing 2 eventually won out when All Torque stopped pushing forward. This put great strain on All Torque's motors, and it was not long before a puff of smoke emerged out of All Torque's back wheels, with All Torque also visibly slowing and crashing into the arena wall. An even contest broke out between the smoking All Torque and Thing 2, with Thing 2 pushing All Torque across the arena and near to Shunt, while All Torque completed a series of charges. However after a close battle between the two machines, Thing 2 made the critical attack and pushed All Torque into the path of Shunt, where it was axed by the House Robot and burnt by the flame jets on the other side of the wall. All Torque displayed no movement here while Thing 2 forced it underneath Shunt where the competitor and House Robot became stuck. To help, Sgt. Bash moved in and Shunt was freed, leaving a great hole in the top of All Torque with an axe blow. Although All Torque could twitch back and forth, it could not escape the CPZ and eventually became immobile entirely.

"All Torque's all quiet now!"
— Craig Charles

The damage caused to All Torque at the end of the battle

All Torque's immobilisation was later revealed to be caused by Shunt axing through its radio receiver. As a result, Thing 2 won the battle by knockout while All Torque was eliminated in the second round.

"Whatever the wuss in the corner's called put his axe through the roof, straight into the controller and put us out. [Thing 2] wouldn't have done that, but they would've won anyway, they were pushing us about."
— Robin Iddon to Philippa Forrester

The First World Championship[edit | edit source]

"Our driver Hamish will hopefully sort all the competition out!"
— Richie McBride

All Torque returned for the First World Championship, where it represented Scotland. It faced England representative Razer in the first round, and was modified with seven extra layers of armour to resist the crushing weapon.

"Another thing we discovered after the fight was the reason All Torque proved so difficult to pierce - they had installed seven layers of armour on their machine. The mixture of Lexan, steel and plywood stopped even our mighty, fearsome crusher from destroying them"
— Vinnie Blood of Team Razer on All Torque's modifications[9]

Razer pierces into the top of All Torque

Razer's attack forces both robots' rear-ends into the air

While All Torque was quick off the mark, it swung wide of Razer and the intervention of an arena spike meant that All Torque was now pointing its side towards Razer, and the English machine capitalised straight away by piercing a hole in All Torque's top armour. Razer then crushed down on All Torque's left claw, which popped back into place when released, allowing All Torque to flee. It was then All Torque which drove head-first up Razer's wedge and managed to complete the attack without being caught, also outwedging Razer on another drive. However Razer soon found its way into the wheel housing of All Torque, and both robots were lifted high off their back wheels as Razer tried to pierce through the front armour of All Torque from behind. Smoke had also started to emerge from All Torque at this stage.

"...leaving Razer to cause all the damage itself, on those custom-made tyres! Shredding, look!"
— Jonathan Pearce

The mascot Hamish catches fire

Razer and Sgt. Bash bite into All Torque

Razer continued to dominate the proceedings, driving under All Torque on several occasions while bringing its claw into play, and a side-on grab allowed Razer to once again pierce the shell of All Torque, almost lifting it from the arena floor on the release. All Torque had stopped creating attacks of its own, and simply reversed into Shunt's CPZ while avoiding Razer, only opening it up to another bite from the crusher which this time went all the way through All Torque's side, the most damaging attack yet. The House Robots were also present, and Sgt. Bash set fire to the mascot Hamish. All Torque had finally been immobilised, and Razer continued to attack with a crush from behind while Sgt. Bash bit into All Torque from the side, raising both robots from the arena floor. Dead Metal also closed in and sliced through All Torque from the side, leaving the Scottish representative attacked from all sides.

"Our motors weren't on top performance so uh, we just pushed ourselves to see how long we could last, really. We got beat fair and square, it was alright really!"
— Richie McBride

The battle drew to its end, and was presented as a knockout victory for Razer on television, although the fight in actuality went to a Judges' decision - the outcome was obvious, however, and All Torque was eliminated by Razer in the first round.

"We won the fight on a judges' decision as both machines were mobile. Our greatest concern was the smoke seeping out from Razer at the end of the fight. It turned out that we were suffering from a short in the electronics which was causing the arm to crush even without us operating the controls. When we had thought our arm was simply stuck in All Torque, it was actually jammed on full power and burning the motor which runs the hydraulics."
— Vinnie Blood of Team Razer on the Judges' decision[10]

Results[edit | edit source]

ALL TORQUE - RESULTS
Series 2
The Second Wars - UK Championship
Heat Final
Heat I, Gauntlet 11.2m (1st) Qualified
Heat I, Trial (Joust) 13.6m (1st) Qualified
NOTE: All Torque was the only robot to defeat Matilda in this event
Heat I, Semi-Final vs. Prometheus Won
Heat I, Final vs. King Buxton Lost
Series 3
The Third Wars - UK Championship
Heat, Round 2
Heat N, Round 1 vs. Crippler Won
Heat N, Round 2 vs. Thing 2 Lost
The First World Championship
Representing Scotland, Eliminators
Eliminator vs. Razer (ENG) Lost

Wins/Losses[edit | edit source]

  • Wins: 2
  • Losses: 3

NOTE: All Torque's successful Gauntlet and Trial runs are not included

Series Record[edit | edit source]

Main Series All Torque Series Record
The First Wars Did not enter
The Second Wars Heat Final
The Third Wars Heat, Round 2
The Fourth Wars Entered with Small Torque
The Fifth Wars Entered with Hippobotomus (Richie McBride)
Entered with Bot Out of Hell (Martyn Sloss)
The Sixth Wars Did not enter
The Seventh Wars Did not enter
Series 8 Did not enter
Series 9 Did not enter
Series 10 Did not enter
Robot Wars Extreme Appearances
Series 1 Entered with Fighting Torque
Series 2 Did not enter

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • All Torque is one of six robots to have come first in both The Gauntlet and The Trial in one heat. The other robots in this category are Nemesis, Robot the Bruce, Demolition Demon, Razer and Corporal Punishment.
  • All Torque is also the name Mr Nasty used on the spin-off show Techno Games.
  • Jonathan Pearce claims that Martyn Sloss once built an animated Margaret Thatcher.
  • In the First World Championship, All Torque also had a small Robin toy as its mascot called Hamish, who was set on fire by Sgt. Bash in All Torque's defeat to Razer.
  • Future team member and stand-up comedian Daniel Sloss appeared on an August 2020 podcast where he discussed his Robot Wars experiences and elaborated on the thought process behind All Torque. He states that the idea was to put all of the weight into the motors, referencing All Torque's victory in Joust against Matilda as proof of their success. He later puts All Torque's struggles in arena fights down to a lack of active weaponry, which was due to the weight restriction.
    • Daniel also claims All Torque to have been able to reach speeds of up to 30mph in Series 2, rather than 20mph as listed in the show. If true, this would have made All Torque faster than the likes of Series 2 runner-up Cassius. [11]

External Links[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

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