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"Named after the terrifying dog of the underworld! He has a steel head ram and clubbing tail, stainless steel claws, plenty of bite! The bodyshell's Kevlar and it cost £800."
Jonathan Pearce in Series 3

Cerberus was a competitor robot that fought in Series 3-4 of Robot Wars, and both series of Robot Wars Extreme. It reached the Heat Final of The Third Wars, and also represented Cyprus in The First World Championship and the Commonwealth Carnage.

Cerberus' biggest claim to fame is its 10-second defeat of Griffon in The Third Wars. This stood as the shortest battle record from The Third Wars until the Seventh Wars, and to date stands as the record for the fastest pitting victory in the show's history.

The robot was named after and designed in reference to the three-headed hound Cerberus, guardian of the underworld in Greek mythology. It was a particular favourite of pit reporter Philippa Forrester for its shiny coat and artistic design, for which it was nominated for the Best Design Award in The Third Wars.

DesignEdit

Cerberus

Cerberus in Series 3

Cerberus was a bulky reverse wedge-shaped robot modelled on a dog, with a chrome-plated steel head, stainless steel claws and spiked tail resembling a wedged battering ram. It initially featured Kevlar armour and a tungsten-tipped circular saw in Series 3, the latter similar to the weapon used by Series 1 champion Roadblock. However, the saw had to be removed before Cerberus was due to fight, as the weapon was made of hardened steel which was prohibited by the rules and resulted in Pussycat's disqualification immediately prior to Cerberus' heat. Instead, Cerberus used its pushing power and front and rear spikes as its primary weapons, although its high ground clearance and initial lack of self-righting mechanism would result in its defeat against Thing 2. Cerberus was originally built at a cost of £800 over eight weeks, and became a personal favourite of Philippa Forrester throughout its appearances, as a result of its glossy finish and gold - later grey or silver - colour.

Cerberus4mag

Cerberus in Series 4, before the head was removed to make the weight limit

Beheaded cerberus

Cerberus with the head removed

For Series 4, Cerberus was altered to feature titanium armour salvaged from a scrapyard instead of Kevlar, and its weapon was changed to a front crusher using the head and spikes as well as a low-mounted lifting blade mounted between the front spikes. However, this revised weapon put Cerberus over the weight limit, so it was forced to have its head removed prior to entering the arena, severely reducing the effectiveness of the crusher. Cerberus was rebuilt over eight weeks for Series 4, at a cost of £350.

Extreme cerberus

Cerberus in the arena during Extreme 1. Note that the main weapon is missing.

Despite failing to qualify for either Series 5 or 6 (see Qualification), Cerberus entered the first series of Extreme with its crusher weapon intact, and two side arms which acted as the robot's self-righting mechanism, rectifying the issue that saw it defeated by Thing 2 and V-Max in previous series. Its top speed was also increased to 18mph.

Cerberus EX2

Cerberus in Extreme 2

For it last appearance in the Extreme 2 Commonwealth Carnage, Cerberus' srimech was removed, and the robot's glossy coat was abandoned in favour of a duller finish. However, its age and lack of offensive weaponry contributed towards its defeat in its only battle in the Commonwealth Carnage.

QualificationEdit

Cerberus entered Series 3 in the same manner as all other competitors, and then automatically qualified for Series 4 as a seeded machine.

Cerberus (Series 6)

The version of Cerberus that failed to qualify for Series 6

Equipped with its self-righting mechanism, Cerberus attempted to enter Series 5, but lost its qualifier battle to newcomers Tip-Top, and failed to qualify for that series.

It later reappeared for the Series 6 qualifiers, but was easily defeated by Bulldog Breed in its qualifier battle, which attempted to throw it out of the arena on several occasions before the battle was ended early to prevent Bulldog Breed from damaging the arena. After its Series 6 qualifier, Cerberus' self-righting mechanism was removed, and did not attempt to take part in any other series after this, barring its Extreme 2 Commonwealth Carnage appearance.

MisfortuneEdit

Cerberus with saw

Cerberus in the pits in Series 3, equipped with the hardened saw, which had to be removed

Much like Diotoir and Behemoth, Cerberus encountered considerable bouts of misfortune throughout its main series appearances. In Series 3, it was forced to remove its primary weapon, the hardened steel saw, due to Pussycat's disqualification in the previous heat for the same reason. Although Cerberus still reached its Heat Final without its saw, it suffered a relatively easy defeat against Thing 2 as a result of its lack of weaponry. In Series 4, having added a new steel tongue to act as a crusher with the head, the Cerberus team was informed that the new weapon pushed Cerberus over the weight limit, and they had to remove Cerberus' head in order to ensure it met it. Again, the lack of potency in this altered weapon contributed towards Cerberus's defeat by reserves V-Max in the first round.

Robot HistoryEdit

Series 3Edit

In the first round of the Third Wars, Cerberus fought veterans Killerhurtz.

Killerhurtz vs cerberus

Killerhurtz spikes Cerberus

Cerberus radio

The damage caused to Cerberus by Killerhurtz

It spun and rammed Killerhurtz front-on, and received a couple of axe blows to its head and armour as it pushed Killerhurtz across the arena. Killerhurtz then pierced a hole through Cerberus' rear armour, before both robots drove tentatively around each other and Killerhurtz inexplicably drove itself into the pit while trying to make another run on Cerberus.Unseen in battle, Killerhurtz's last axe blow had also punctured Cerberus' battery, although this damage was not enough to stop Cerberus from progressing to the next round.

There, Cerberus faced against another experienced robot in Griffon, from the University of Reading.

Griffon pitted quickly

Cerberus achieves the quickest ever pitting

The battle was swift, with Cerberus starting by spinning around as Griffon moved forward and seemed to have minimal mobility. Cerberus capitalised on this by pushing Griffon towards the pit with its front claws and allowing it to drive in itself, ending the battle in just ten seconds. Prior to Series 7, this was the shortest ever battle in any series of Robot Wars.

"Cerberus, the London team. Glossy, shiny, don't forget, has that steel head RAM to push Griffon into the pit... straight away!"
Jonathan Pearce summarises the entire battle with Griffon

In the Heat Final, Cerberus faced Thing 2.

Thing 2 Cerberus

Cerberus pushes Thing 2 across the arena

Thing 2 under Cerberus

Thing 2 gets underneath Cerberus

Both robots darted towards each other straight away, dodging and circling before Thing 2 got underneath Cerberus' high ground clearance. Cerberus spun and backed onto the Flame Pit, and kept spinning until it rammed Thing 2 head-on, knocking its decorative ball off and using its head to clamp Thing 2 as it pushed it into the wall. It spun against the wall again, and used its ramming tail to get under Thing 2 again and push it as Thing 2 attempted to get underneath it again. Cerberus drove over the Flame Pit again as Thing 2 gave chase, Cerberus positioned its rear tail, with Thing 2 being thrust on one wheel as it careered into Matilda's CPZ. Both robots escaped from Matilda and continued driving round each other, until Thing 2 got underneath Cerberus' rear tail and tipped it over, breaking the linkages connecting the tail to Cerberus's chassis in the process. Inverted and unable to self-right, Cerberus was eliminated once 'cease' was called, after a close and tenacious battle.

"Cerberus, up and over... and the dog from Hades is showing its underbelly and it wants a little bit of a tickle! And it wants respite and relief because Cerberus has been dogged to death, by Thing 2!"
— Jonathan Pearce, after Thing 2 flips Cerberus

Cerberus also represented Cyprus in The First World Championship, which took place and was filmed at around the same time as the Third Wars. In the first round, Cerberus was due to face American entrant Mauler, but progressed to the Quarter Finals by default after Mauler's weapon was deemed too powerful and too dangerous by the producers, resulting in Mauler's instant disqualification.

Philippa Forrester: "Can you just tell me, are you slightly relieved?"
Theo Kaccoufa: "Of course we're relieved! Did you expect we're lunatics or something?"
— Interview after Mauler was disqualified

In its Quarter Final, Cerberus fought another Series 3 Heat Finalist in Irish representatives Diotoir.

Diotoir vs Cerberus

Cerberus is flicked into the air by Diotoir

Diotoir Cerberus

Diotoir edges Cerberus towards the pit

Cerberus started the faster, spinning around in circles before ramming Diotoir from the front. Diotoir pinned Cerberus against the wall, before flicking it with its spring-powered lifting arm and hoisting it aloft. Another flick from Diotoir nearly turned Cerberus over, before Cerberus narrowly escaped being pitted by Diotoir and Sir Killalot after its lifting arm got under its ramming tail and it spun precariously close to a CPZ.

Diotoir Cerberus 1

Cerberus is toppled by Diotoir

Diotoir Cerberus 2

Sir Killalot damages the immobile Cerberus

Diotoir flicked Cerberus up again, before eventually toppling Cerberus onto its back and leaving it open to attack from the House Robots, while simultaneously catching fire after a run-in with Sgt. Bash. Even so, Cerberus was hoisted by Sir Killalot, and dumped in the pit, eliminating it and Cyprus from the First World Championship.

"There's always next year, we'll come back for a visit, you know, slap a few robots around ... We'll be better equipped next year: bigger claws!"
— The Cerberus team optimistic for the next wars despite defeat
Behemoth vs Cerberus

Behemoth lifts Cerberus in an unaired battle

Cerberus also fought an unaired friendly battle against Behemoth. It is known that Behemoth lifted Cerberus against the arena wall, but the outcome of this battle remains unknown, as the battle was only revealed to exist through a CD-ROM given away with the Robot Wars Magazine. Kane Aston of Team Make Robotics confirmed on an archived forum[1] that this was a friendly battle, and was filmed after the The First World Championship.

At the end of the series, Cerberus was nominated for the 'Best Design' award, however, it lost out to Razer, the winner of the award from the previous series.

Series 4Edit

"Are they stronger this time around? Don't let them off the leash House Robots!"
— Jonathan Pearce during his run-down of Cerberus's past performances

Cerberus was seeded eighteenth for the Fourth Wars and competed in the final Heat, but not before having its head removed in order to bring it within the weight limit. It was originally planned to fight former Series 2 Heat-Finalist Onslaught and newcomers Terror-Bull, both of whom were planning on ganging up on Cerberus. However, Onslaught was forced to withdraw due to technical problems, and reserve robot V-Max took its place.

V-max cerberus

V-Max flips Cerberus

Bash cerberus

Cerberus about to be pitted by Sgt. Bash

At the start, Cerberus steered away from V-Max's initial charge, spinning in the middle of the arena as V-Max strayed into Matilda's CPZ, where Cerberus lingered round for some time. It once tried to spike V-Max, but turned too far and only made a glancing bash. Eventually, Cerberus drove up V-Max's front wedge and was flipped onto its back, again becoming immobilised and open to attack from the House Robots. Sgt. Bash grabbed hold of Cerberus' tail with his pincers and dragged it around the arena, allowing Sir Killalot, Matilda and Dead Metal to cause more damage to Cerberus' armour. After Dead Metal caused sparks and gashes in Cerberus, Sgt. Bash dumped it in the pit, eliminating Cerberus from the Fourth Wars.

"The beast that guards the gates of hell rolls over, and gets its tummy tickled!"
Craig Charles at the end of the fight

Extreme 1Edit

"Hello. We are Team Cerberus. I'm Theo. This is Vaso and Alex. This beast is Cerberus, and he's ready to tear the opposition to pieces! We are the most dangerous machine, we are so dangerous, they keep us in a cage!"
— Theo Kaccoufa

Despite not appearing in either of the corresponding main competitions, Cerberus competed in both series of Robot Wars Extreme. In the first series, it exclusively competed in the Tag Team Terror tournament, paired with Thermidor 2. The pair had an easy victory in the first round, where they were drawn up against S.M.I.D.S.Y. and Sumpthing.

Cerberus SMIDSY

Cerberus and S.M.I.D.S.Y. lock horns

Thermidor Sumpthing

Thermidor 2 prepares to flip Sumpthing

CerberusThermidorvsSumpthingSMIDSY

A victorious Cerberus opens its srimech

SMIDSY pitted

Shunt pits S.M.I.D.S.Y.

Despite Cerberus suffering from problems with its main weapon, S.M.I.D.S.Y. and Cerberus had a ponderous pushing match, with Cerberus initially hooking its lifting spike under S.M.I.D.S.Y., before both robots separated. S.M.I.D.S.Y. then sliced into the tail of Cerberus with its new spinning disc, but lost control and drove into its teammate Sumpthing, then charged out again and slammed into the angle grinder at the opposite end of the arena, as it was stuck in forward drive. Thermidor 2 then came out and quickly dispatched both S.M.I.D.S.Y. and Sumpthing by flipping them over, using Cerberus as a chock. Sumpthing and S.M.I.D.S.Y. were then counted out and Cerberus and Thermidor 2 were put through to the second round, however, the main weapon of Cerberus was badly damaged.

Unable to repair its crushing claws, the Cerberus team removed it for the Semi-Final battle, where Cerberus and Thermidor 2 were placed up against The Steel Avenger and Suicidal Tendencies.

Suicidal Tendencies vs Cerberus

Cerberus is grabbed by Suicidal Tendencies

Steel Avenger vs Cerberus

Cerberus avoids the pit

However, a lot of accidental in-fighting occurred between Cerberus and Thermidor 2. Cerberus was left out for most of the battle, after an early brief scuffle with Suicidal Tendencies, until all four competitors came out to fight. Suddenly, Thermidor 2 lost power completely and stopped moving, as it was over the flame pit. The lobster was soon counted out by Refbot, leaving Cerberus to fight the cause alone. Although it didn't go on the offensive much, Cerberus still managed to hang on to a judges' decision as it used its agility to avoid the weaponry of its opponents for most of the rest of the battle, however it sustained damage from The Steel Avenger's axe. But Thermidor 2's immobilisation easily put the team at a disadvantage, and they were indeed eliminated from the competition as a result of the judges' decision.

Extreme 2Edit

After failing to qualify for Series 5 and 6, a decidedly less shiny Cerberus returned for the second series of Extreme, representing Cyprus again in the Commonwealth Carnage. It would battle Panic Attack (representing Wales), Terror Turtle (representing Canada) and Crushtacean (representing South Africa) in the first round.

Philippa Forrester: "The last time I saw Cerberus [in Series 3], I know it was a little while ago, it looked beautiful, it's all dull and lackluster, is he not on top form?"
Theo Kaccoufa: "He's a bit tired"
Philippa Forrester: "For those of you who don't remember, this robot used to be so shiny and beautiful"
Theo Kaccoufa: "Yeah, but, all of those other robots scratch him, and they hurt him, so he decided "why should I look pretty?""
— Cerberus' pre-first round interview
Crushtacean vs Cerberus

Cerberus is caught by Crushtacean

CommonwealthCarnageRound1.2.1

Cerberus is pitted by Crushtacean

In the battle, Cerberus was the quickest to the centre of the arena as it charged into Panic Attack, attempting to shove it but then glancing away. Cerberus was then spinning madly in an attempt to shy Panic Attack off, but the Welsh machine kept coming back for more. Cerberus was then targeted by Crushtacean, Cerberus tried to out steer the crab robot but were soon cornered and seized by the claws of Crushtacean side-on, making Cerberus unable to get away. Crushtacean, still with Cerberus in its clutches, then ran across the arena and activated the pit release button. The South African machine then lined Cerberus up with the pit, before eventually dumping Cerberus into the pit of oblivion after just 49 seconds of fighting, eliminating Cerberus from the competition. Panic Attack and Crushtacean would later progress to the second round on a judges' decision. This was Cerberus' last appearance in Robot Wars.

"SEND IT UP!!! SEND IT UP!!!"
— Chants from the Cerberus team after Cerberus goes into the pit

ResultsEdit

CERBERUS - RESULTS
Series 3
The Third Wars - UK Championship
Heat Final
Heat N, Round 1 vs. Killerhurtz Won
Heat N, Round 2 vs. Griffon Won
Heat N, Final vs. Thing 2 Lost
The First World Championship
Representing Cyprus, Quarter-Final
Eliminator vs. Mauler (USA) Won (by default)
NOTE: Mauler was disqualified after its weapon was deemed too dangerous to use in the arena, so Cerberus won by default
Quarter-Final vs. Diotoir (IRE) Lost
Unaired battle
Head-to-Head vs. Behemoth Unknown
Series 4
The Fourth Wars - UK Championship
18th Seed, Heat, Round 1
Heat P, Eliminator vs. Terror-Bull, V-Max Eliminated
Extreme Series 1
Tag Team Terror
with Thermidor 2, Round 2
Round 1 vs. Sumpthing & S.M.I.D.S.Y. Won
Round 2 vs. Suicidal Tendencies & The Steel Avenger Lost
Extreme Series 2
Commonwealth Carnage
Representing Cyprus, Round 1
Round 1 vs. Crushtacean (RSA), Panic Attack (WAL), Terror Turtle (CAN) Eliminated

Wins/LossesEdit

  • Wins: 3
  • Losses: 5
  • NOTE 1: Cerberus' default victory over Mauler is not counted as a win.
  • NOTE 2: Cerberus' unaired battle with Behemoth is also excluded.

Series RecordEdit

Main Series Cerberus Series Record
The First Wars Did not enter
The Second Wars Did not enter
The Third Wars Heat Final
The Fourth Wars Heat, Round 1
The Fifth Wars Failed to qualify
The Sixth Wars Failed to qualify
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
Series 2 Entered

Outside Robot WarsEdit

Team Cerberus competed in Techno Games. They first appeared in the second season with a climbing robot named Big Bug, which competed in the Natural Rope Climb event, but lost its first match. The team would later compete in the Light Sprint event with Bugbox.

TriviaEdit

  • Cerberus as it appeared in the opening of the show
  • Cerberus (far right) makes a cameo on Spaced
  • Cerberus was the only machine to represent Cyprus in any series of Robot Wars.
  • Cerberus held the record for the shortest ever battle in Robot Wars, with its Series 3 battle against Griffon lasting ten seconds. This stood as the shortest battle until the Seventh Wars, and remains the shortest battle not to involve a robot being thrown out of the arena.
  • Cerberus was one of six robots from the original line-up for the Fourth Wars to be excluded from the Robot Wars Battle Cards.
  • Strangely, despite adding a self-righting mechanism for Extreme 1, Cerberus's weakness was listed as "No self-righting mechanism".
  • Cerberus had a brief cameo on the sitcom Spaced in the episode "Mettle."
  • Cerberus could be seen next to Thermidor 2, its tag teammate, in Thermidor 2's Extreme 1 team introduction.

HonoursEdit


Nominations

References Edit

  1. Kane Aston of Team Make Robotics on TinWeb in 2000
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