- Peter Koene: "We have lots of magic objects and stuff, they should be really afraid of us!"
- Philippa Forrester: "It all depends on whether they believe."
- — The team's introduction before their fight with Ansgar's Revenge
Das Gepäck was a Dutch competitor robot that competed in the second series of Dutch Robot Wars. It also represented Germany in the UK vs Germany Special broadcast as part of both Robot Wars: The Sixth Wars and German Robot Wars. Due to its German name, it was credited as being a German robot despite hailing from the Netherlands, and went onto become the joint champion of the UK vs Germany special with the British Fluffy.
- "36 volt powered, has 20 miles an hour top speed, invertible, two very powerful engines, spikes to push and impale, but no great weaponry there."
- — Jonathan Pearce describes Das Gepäck
Das Gepäck was a converted version of the original Alien Destructor. It was an invertible box-shaped robot with six wheels and relied on its high speed (contributed to by four 750W motors) and ramming spikes to defeat opponents. In this regard, it was very similar to the original Tornado, and was able to push the considerably heavier Ansgar's Revenge around the arena. The robot was armed in welded steel and polycarbonate.
The robot was painted to look like The Luggage, a ferocious many-legged magical chest from the Discworld book series by Terry Pratchett. The team continued the magical theme from the books by wearing wizard hats (with 'great magician' and 'also' written on them in German) and claiming that the robot was powered by a black hole.
Das Gepäck literally translates from German as The Luggage, with its German name allowing the robot to represent Germany in Robot Wars when it was in fact a Dutch machine.
Dutch Series 2
Das Gepäck's first-round battle of the Dutch series was against Gravity.
Das Gepäck chased after Gravity, which drove away down the arena, but Das Gepäck caught up, and started pushing at Gravity's side. Gravity escaped up the arena, with Das Gepäck following it. Gravity turned to get its flipper under Das Gepäck as it caught up, but Das Gepäck drove over it before Gravity could fire, so the flip missed. Das Gepäck reversed away from Sir Killalot, and Gravity followed, getting underneath its opponent and pushing it into the arena wall, where Gravity lifted it up to hold it still. Gravity then turned Das Gepäck away from the arena wall, and Das Gepäck got off Gravity's lifter as Gravity reversed. Das Gepäck charged in reverse at Gravity, but Gravity merely turned around, allowing it to reverse into Das Gepäck, pushing it into the bottom arena wall and pin it there. Gravity stopped pushing, and drove up the arena. Das Gepäck was close behind, and when it caught up with Gravity, it tried pushing it, but Gravity pushed back, forcing it into the arena wall by an empty CPZ, pinning it there. Sgt. Bash came into the CPZ, and Gravity let go, driving into the arena centre, with Das Gepäck chasing after it.
Gravity turned and started chasing after Das Gepäck, trying to get its lifter under its opponent. Das Gepäck reversed away, but reversed too close to Sgt. Bash, and Gravity forced it into the claw of the House Robot and flipped it over. Das Gepäck tried to push its way past the House Robot, but Sgt. Bash pushed back against it, and as the two pushed against each other, Gravity came in again, and flipped Das Gepäck over. Sgt. Bash bit into Das Gepäck and pushed it against the wall, before releasing it. Das Gepäck escaped, and rammed into Gravity, but Gravity pushed it up the arena, pinning it against the top arena wall. Gravity reversed, and Das Gepäck chased after it as it tried to get away. Das Gepäck got behind Gravity and started pushing, but Gravity turned around and got under Das Gepäck, pushing it into Sgt. Bash's CPZ and flipping it against the wall. Das Gepäck was pushed off the wall by Sgt. Bash, and chased after Gravity, but time ran out. The Jury's decision was in favour of Gravity, and Das Gepäck was eliminated at this stage.
German Series / UK Series 6
- "Just wait 'til you see this team of wacky, wonderful wizards!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Das Gepäck enters the arena
Das Gepäck started by charging at Ansgar's Revenge, but drove at the wrong angle, and wasn't able to push its opponent, so drove past and turned around for another attack. Despite its opponent's huge weight advantage, Das Gepäck rammed Ansgar's Revenge into Dead Metal's CPZ, who grabbed it, and cut into the steel bar, whilst Das Gepäck continued slamming it. Dead Metal released the shufflebot, but Ansgar's Revenge seemed to have stopped moving completely. Sir Killalot dragged Ansgar's Revenge out into the middle of the arena, where it still made very little movement. Das Gepäck opened the pit, then rammed Ansgar against the angle grinder, continuing to slam into it. Ansgar's Revenge began to show signs of movement, turning away from the angle grinder, causing Das Gepäck to miss a charge, but Das Gepäck kept ramming it, before pushing it into Sir Killalot.
- "...for me, Das Gepäck is the best machine we have seen so far in this UK Germany special."
- — Jonathan Pearce
Das Gepäck stayed away as the House Robots attacked, before Sir Killalot pushed Ansgar's Revenge down the arena, leaving it near the pit. Das Gepäck pushed its opponent, but time ran out before Das Gepäck could pit it. Ansgar's Revenge had survived to the judges' decision, which went to Das Gepäck.
- "It didn't take long, it's obvious who won! Ansgar's Revenge totally battered, Das Gepäck goes marching on!"
- — Craig Charles on the decision
In Round 2, Das Gepäck was drawn against the weapon-less Delldog for the right to fight the UK representative in the final.
- Phillipa Forrester: "What will it mean for this robot to fight against the UK, how important is it for you?"
- Peter Koene: "It should be so nice!"
- Phillipa Forrester: "It would be so nice, would it? We've got a little magic of our own, don't forget!"
- — Pre-battle interview
Das Gepäck charged at its opponent, but Delldog moved away before Das Gepäck could reach it. Das Gepäck turned around and tried to chase Delldog, but Delldog moved away up the arena, then turned around and slammed into Das Gepäck. Das Gepäck turned and tried to push at Delldog's side, but Delldog pushed back and turned away.
- "I like the look of Das Gepäck, I must admit. Don't like the beards or the wizardry hats..."
- — Jonathan Pearce
Delldog got away from Das Gepäck, but Das Gepäck soon caught up, pushing it into Mr. Psycho's CPZ. Das Gepäck reversed as Mr. Psycho tried to pin Delldog against the top arena wall, and trapped it in the CPZ. Delldog managed to escape, driving around Mr. Psycho, but once it had escaped, Das Gepäck rammed it into Sgt. Bash's CPZ. Delldog was sliced by Sgt. Bash's pincer, and Das Gepäck opened the pit. Stuck on Sgt. Bash's pincer, Delldog was hammered by Mr. Psycho. Das Gepäck rammed Delldog into the top arena wall, and it became clear that Delldog was immobilised, so it was counted out by Refbot. With one push, Das Gepäck pushed the beaten machine into the pit.
- "Delldog, barking up the wrong tree, Das Gepäck represents Germany in the final"
- — Craig Charles after the fight
Das Gepäck was now through to the final to fight the UK, represented by Fluffy. Jonathan Pearce stated that Das Gepäck was a worthy finalist.
- "The black hole is getting heavier and heavier, it’s getting so heavy they will be sucked right into it"
- — Peter Koene before the fight
In the final, both robots seemed tentative, avoiding each other at first, with Fluffy trying to get its spinner up to speed, and Das Gepäck trying to get in a good position to push whilst also avoiding the spinner. Das Gepäck tried pushing at Fluffy's side, but got a glancing blow from the spinner and quickly turned away for another attack. The two robots turned to face each other, and Fluffy hit the front of Das Gepäck, ripping one of Das Gepäck's spikes from the front, leaving it hanging loose. The two robots turned away to line up another attack, and Das Gepäck tried ramming into Fluffy's side, but Fluffy turned away. As Das Gepäck tried to line up another attack, Fluffy got its spinner up to speed, and hit Das Gepäck's side a couple of times, but no damage was done. Fluffy chased after Das Gepäck, which kept its distance, but then turned around and rammed into the front of Fluffy, knocking Fluffy aside.
- "Very well balanced, and well set up, this final. By far and away the best two machines we've seen!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
Fluffy turned around and hit Das Gepäck, knocking off a piece of armour, but as it did so it drove onto the flame pit. Fluffy got off, but its spinner slowed down, and when Das Gepäck rammed into it, the blade stopped. Das Gepäck tried pushing Fluffy, but it reversed, having only managed to push it a little. Fluffy kept its distance from Das Gepäck, and then turned around, and Das Gepäck got at the side of Fluffy again and started pushing. However, Das Gepäck's buckled spike slipped, causing it to lose its traction on Fluffy. Fluffy turned and escaped. Das Gepäck activated the pit instead, and then chased after Fluffy, which was able to avoid its opponent. However, Fluffy drove into Sgt. Bash, which was out of the CPZ, and this allowed Das Gepäck to catch up. The two robots entered a pushing match near the pit. Fluffy resisted, getting its axe beneath Das Gepäck and allowing it to push back. Das Gepäck ducked around the pit, trying to lure Fluffy towards it, but the Fluffy team did not fall for this trick. Das Gepäck charged up the arena and tried to push Fluffy into Sgt. Bash, but got too close and nearly got crushed by the pincer itself.
- "At this stage, I can't pick this! It's too close! No great damage caused, or sustained, reasonable level of driving ability. Has the Fluffy weaponry stopped? That could be decisive, if it does go to the judges, mind you the Das Gepäck weapon has hardly been effective throughout."
- — Jonathan Pearce analysing in the last twenty seconds
Das Gepäck swiftly reversed out of Sgt. Bash's grasp and pushed back into Fluffy a couple of times, only managing to push them a little each time. Fluffy drove away, but drove close to the flame pit, allowing Das Gepäck to push it onto the flame pit. Fluffy escaped just before time ran out. In a shock move, the Judges ruled that the fight was a draw, much to the annoyance of the crowd.
- "... I can't see a way for the judges to make a decision! I couldn't, on what I've seen! That is so close!"
- — Jonathan Pearce analysing in the last few seconds
The Das Gepäck team were given the trophy, though it was promised that the Fluffy team would have one made up for them as well.
|DAS GEPÄCK - RESULTS|
Heats, Round 1
|Heat D, Round 1||vs. Gravity||Lost|
|German / UK Series|
|German Robot Wars / UK Series 6|
|UK vs Germany Special|
Representing Germany, Joint Champion
|Round 1||vs. Ansgar's Revenge (GER)||Won|
|Round 2||vs. Delldog (GER)||Won|
|Final||vs. Fluffy (UK)||Drew|
- Dutch Wins: 0
- Dutch Losses: 1
- German / UK Wins: 2
- German / UK Losses: 0
- German / UK Draws: 1
|Dutch Series||Das Gepäck Series Record|
|Series 1||Entered with Alien Destructor|
|Series 2||Heat, Round 1|
Entered with Alien Destructor 2
|German Series||Das Gepäck Series Record|
|German Robot Wars||UK vs Germany joint winner|
Outside Robot Wars
After its appearances on Robot Wars, Das Gepäck competed at the Dutch Robot Games in 2003. Its competition fight was a three-way rumble against Sater 2 and Storm 2, and although Das Gepäck survived the whole bout whilst Sater 2 was knocked out, the Judges gave the win to Storm 2. Although Das Gepäck was eliminated from the main competition, it fought in another two rumbles, losing one to Hard but defeating The Black Beast and K.A.S.A.P. in the other.
- To go with their claim that the robot was powered by a black hole, the team had a transparent cover over the internals, which had a picture of a black hole painted on.