Robot Wars Wiki

"A modification of Small Torque and All Torque from the past, has a spinning disc, is the lightest but quickest here, now that is fighting talk!"
Jonathan Pearce introduces the original Fighting Torque

Fighting Torque was the name given to two separate robots entered by Team Torque in Extreme Series 1. It competed in the Mayhem but was defeated by Atomic 2. However, Atomic's withdrawal allowed Fighting Torque to re-enter the competition, but the team entered its Series 5 robot under the same name in the Annihilator.

The team also entered the second version of the robot in Series 5, under its originally intended name of Hippobotomus, taken from the robot's obvious resemblance to a hippopotamus. The robot fared just as poorly in this series as it had in the Annihilator, losing in the first round to Stinger.

Versions of Fighting Torque[]

Fighting Torque[]

The original Fighting Torque

The original design of Fighting Torque was a pyramid-shaped robot wearing a kilt with a spinning disc on a moving arm as its weapon. A skull decorated the top of the robot. Fighting Torque had an extremely high centre of gravity, which caused it to topple over easily. Cartoon buttocks were hidden underneath the robot's kilt.


Official photo of Hippobotomus

This robot was in the shape of a yellow hippopotamus and retained the cutting disc on moving arm weaponry of the original robot but was much less hardy. It was made mostly from salvaged parts; its shell was a plastic hippo sand pit, and its wheels came off a skateboard. This robot had a 2cm ground clearance and looked quite fragile, and performed poorly, losing in the first round of the Annihilator.


Hippobotomus adopts the Fighting Torque name in the Annihilator

The name Fighting Torque was a pun based on the phrase "fighting talk". This kept in line with the rest of Team Torque's pun-based names, such as All Torque and Small Torque.

The name Hippobotomus was a pun based on the hippopotamus animal which the robot resembled, integrating the term 'bot', as in robot. Curiously, the word hippopotamus contains the letter A, but the robot's name replaced this with another O.

The Team[]

Main article: Team Torque

Richie McBride and his children with Hippobotomus

Fighting Torque was entered by Team Torque, experienced Scottish roboteers who had competed since the Second Wars. Richie McBride captained the team, and was joined consistently by his son Alex McBride. In the Mayhem in Extreme, Richie McBride was also joined by Robin Iddon, who had competed with the team in Series 2 and 3, while in Series 5, Richie's daughter Ellen McBride was part of the team. Ellen McBride notably cried after her robot was defeated in the Fifth Wars, but her brother Alex encouraged her to prod the Stinger team with a cardboard mace as an act of revenge.


Hippobotomus fought at the Glasgow leg of the Series 5 qualification tour. In combat, it fought Corkscrew, which was not permitted to use its spinning body, but Hippobotomus still lost the battle. It received a discretionary place in the Fifth Wars regardless.

Robot History[]

Extreme 1[]

Fighting Torque's secret is exposed

Fighting Torque is toppled

Fighting Torque entered a Mayhem battle in the first series of Extreme. It was drawn against Atomic 2 and MouseTrap. Atomic 2 dominated the fight, it immediately flipped MouseTrap a few times and then flipped Fighting Torque. Atomic 2 flipped both robots around the arena repeatedly. MouseTrap couldn't self-right and so was counted out, whilst Fighting Torque still tried to attack Atomic 2. Fighting Torque was flipped again, counted out and placed on the arena floor flipper. Fighting Torque was sprung up in the air and landed on its wheels, but was flipped again and left to burn on the flame pit.

Fighting Torque is rammed by The Steel Avenger

Disc-O-Inferno shears away Fighting Torque's side

Due to Atomic taking tremendous damage from Hypno-Disc in its Heat in Series 5, it was forced to withdraw from the Annihilator and Fighting Torque was reinstated. However the team used their Series 5 robot, Hippobotomus, renamed Fighting Torque. The first round pitted it against Disc-O-Inferno, Napalm 2, Panic Attack, Spirit of Knightmare and The Steel Avenger. The battle started brutally with all the robots charging into to each other. Fighting Torque was rammed by The Steel Avenger, and sustained damage to its top armour, all while Napalm 2 was immobile on one side. Disc-O-Inferno then ripped Fighting Torque to pieces, and despite Napalm 2's earlier immobility, Fighting Torque was counted out, finishing the Annihilator in sixth place.

Series 5[]

"Hippobotomus, made out of a child's sandpit essentially, but this is Robot Wars, and we've seen giant upsets in the past"
— Jonathan Pearce

In the first round of Heat C, Hippobotomus fought against fifth seed and Series 4 Grand Finalist Stinger.

Hippobotomus takes a hit from Stinger

Hippobotomus loses an eye

Little action of meaning took place in the opening seconds, with neither machine landing a significant blow on each other until Stinger connected with two side attacks on Hippobotomus. Stinger followed its first hits of the battle up with an overhead swing of its mace, but narrowly missed Hippobotomus' head. After backing over the Flame Pit, Hippobotomus was attacked by Stinger again, although this time the number 5 seeds could only connect with a glancing blow to Hippobotomus' rear weapon. In the next period of exchange between the two, Hippobotomus began to lose bits of its shell, with a strong swing of Stinger's weapon also shattering the left side of Hippobotomus' head.

"Bits of the sandpit flew off there! They were hoping to 'cement' a place in the next round, but I don't think that's going to happen now!"
— Jonathan Pearce as Stinger damages Hippobotomus

Dead Metal cuts into the sandpit

Stinger comes under pressure from Sir Killalot in the closing seconds

Hippobotomus then managed to force Stinger back after weathering some more blows, but in its attack, Hippobotomus ended up driving itself into the CPZ, where Dead Metal sliced into the top of the sandpit and also knocked loose some extra padding. After escaping the House Robots' clutches, a shaken Hippobotomus spun around the arena and slammed itself into the arena wall. With time running out, Hippobotomus bumped into Stinger, which then backed in towards Sir Killalot. The House Robot then proceeded to grab Stinger by the axle, before dangling it over the arena side wall. Sir Killalot then turned around and placed Stinger down onto the arena floor again, as cease was called. The battle was sent to a Judges' decision, who went in favour of Stinger, leaving Hippobotomus eliminated at the first hurdle.

A word of advice for Ellen McBride

After the fight, Ellen McBride was visibly upset about the grievous amount of damage caused to her team's robot. The crowd booed Team Stinger for making a little girl cry, so they made it up to her by giving her a cardboard prototype of Stinger's weapon, which Ellen used to prod Team Stinger after advice from her brother, Alex.

Craig Charles: "You're [Stinger] seeded 5, which is a very high seeding, and, to be seeded 5 and then nearly come unstuck, by a children's sandpit"
Kevin Scott: "It's a bloody good sandpit."
Craig Charles: "It's not a bad sandpit is it?"
— Team Stinger on Hippobotomus in the post match interview


Extreme Series 1
Mayhem & Annihilator
Sixth in Second Annihilator
Mayhem vs. Atomic 2, MouseTrap Lost
NOTE: Atomic 2 later dropped out of the Annihilator, and Fighting Torque was reinstated.
Extreme Series 1
Annihilator, Round 1 vs. Disc-O-Inferno, Napalm 2, Panic Attack,
Spirit of Knightmare, The Steel Avenger
NOTE: In the Annihilator, Hippobotomus went under the name Fighting Torque.
Series 5
The Fifth Wars - UK Championship
Heat, Round 1
Heat C, Eliminator vs. Stinger (5) Lost


  • Wins: 0
  • Losses: 3

Series Record[]

Main Series Fighting Torque Series Record
The First Wars Did not enter
The Second Wars Entered with All Torque
The Third Wars Entered with All Torque
The Fourth Wars Entered with Small Torque
The Fifth Wars Heat, Round 1 with Hippobotomus
Entered with Bot Out Of Hell (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 Mayhem with Fighting Torque
Annihilator with Hippobotomus
Series 2 Did not enter


  • Fighting Torque is one of only ten robots to début in Extreme 1 and then fight in one of the main competitions, not counting Typhoon. The others were 3 Stegs 2 Heaven, Axe-Awe, Comengetorix, Fluffy, NEAT Machine, Spawn Again, Sub-Version, The Executioner and Draven. However, its début was in a different model and name to the robot that fought in Series 5.
  • Fighting Torque was the tallest competitor in Extreme at 1.75m.
  • Fighting Torque and Terror Australis are the only occasions of two robots entering the same Wars under the same name.
  • The team's introduction for Hippobotomus, seen prior to the first round of the Annihilator, seems to have been filmed as part of Series 5, but these introductions were only used for teams prior to the Heat Semi-Final; as a result, this makes Hippobotomus the only Series 5 competitor to lose in Round 1 of the main competition whose introduction was used in the show anyway (discounting robots such as Thermidor 2 which lost in Round 1, but had introductions filmed specifically for Extreme Series 1).