A "Gentleman's Agreement" refers to an implicit pact among roboteers. It states that when one robot is immobilised or cannot continue, the other will refrain from attacking it, thus preventing unnecessary damage, and minimising the time and labour required to get the losing robot back into fighting shape. The term itself was coined by Ian Lewis of Team Razer after Razer's Series 4 fight with Pussycat, but there were several occurrences of the Gentleman's Agreement before then.
On rare occasions, teams will agree to waive the Gentleman's Agreement, and go all-out in the arena. Most notably the Hypno-Disc team, who were good friends with several of their opponents, were given a free pass from robots like Robogeddon.
In recent years, several robotic competitions have added a Gentleman's Agreement clause to their official rules. In such competitions the judges will penalise, or even disqualify a robot if it continues to damage an incapacitated opponent.
Significant occurrences of "Gentleman's Agreements"Edit
Rex Garrod of Team Cassius gained a reputation as a real gentleman, for quickly disposing of opponents by flipping them over, and then attempting to attack and flip the house robots in the hopes of sparing his victims their punishment. Several people have stated their belief that Garrod deliberately threw the Grand Final to allow Panic Attack to win, as Panic Attack entered to help a charity, receiving sponsorship money for it for every battle they won. However, Kim Davies has denied this, saying that his team had collected a large sum of money before filming began and that Rex Garrod did not throw the fight.
- "We've almost got a pacifist on Robot Wars!"
- — Philippa Forrester
Confident that he would lose, Mike Franklin requested that Razer not destroy his robot's electronics, and Amy Franklin wrote "Don't hurt me, Razer" on 101's shell. Razer obliged; putting several large holes through 101's armour, but not doing any terminal damage.
This is where the term originated. It was alleged that the two teams had agreed not to cause damage after the other robot had been immobilised, but when Razer got stuck in forward drive, Pussycat proceeded to cause damage to Razer, leaving Ian Lewis furious and refusing to talk to the cameras. When he did finally speak, he claimed that Team Razer refrained from damaging the expensive electronics inside previous opponent, Milly-Ann Bug, despite ripping off all four of its wheels. The Pussycat team dismissed the accusations, explaining that Razer's wheels were still turning, giving it the appearance of mobility. They asserted that they had no un-gentlemanly intent, and stopped as soon as they realised Razer had been immobilised.
The incident was re-established in Razer and Pussycat's grudge match in Extreme, but in reality, the incident had been forgiven- and the grudge match was for entertainment only, as well as to see who would win if not for any unforeseen mechanical failures.
Raizer Blade was suffering problems even before the fight began, all the way back from the first melee against Hypno-Disc. In response, The Hypno-Disc team agreed to be merciful and secure the win with a minimal amount of damage, eventually doing so by hitting it once to immobilise it, before knocking off the side armour with a second hit. As part of the agreement, they did not continue attacking after the second hit, however the house robots then continued to attack it.
- "Raizer Blade were brave and top sportsmen to continue in to final battle. Knowing his difficulties we agreed to be more stand-off-ish, in the time honoured robot wars 'Gentleman's Agreement'"
- — Hypno-Disc website
The Spawn Again team revealed before the fight that there was a Gentleman's Agreement between the two teams that, once counted out by the Refbot, the immobilised robot would be pitted by the other contender to avoid damage by the House Robots. Diotoir was flipped almost immediately by Spawn Again and was unable to self-right, so the Refbot counted out Diotoir. Spawn Again then attempted to carry out the pitting, but appeared to lose mobility, meaning that Sergeant Bash set fire to the Irish robot.