Robot Wars Wiki
Robot Wars Wiki

"Amid reports that robot wars are now breaking out all over the world, the European Union, with the backing of the United Nations, today announced that it would do "Everything in its power to halt the spread of this vicious and vile disease". They would rather we did a programme on daffodils and bunny rabbits. But we're not going to. What we are going to do is get on with the Docklands Chainsaw Massacre, and meet the 6 robots who tonight will compete for death or glory!"
Jeremy Clarkson's introduction

Heat C of Robot Wars: The First Wars was the third of six heats which determined the Grand Finalists of Robot Wars: The First Wars. The episode featuring Heat C was originally broadcast on March 6, 1998 on BBC Two.

Competing robots[]

Cruella S1 Crop.png
Weight 81.2kg
Dimensions 0.91m x 0.82m x 0.34m
Speed 15mph
Turning Circle 0m
Ground Clearance 0mm
Power 2 x Sinclair C5 motors
Weapons Circular saw
From: University of East London
Team Members: Philip Martin, Martin Smith & Kanesh Lingham
Dreadnaut S1 Crop.png
Weight 92.6kg
Dimensions 1.45m x 0.92m x 0.75m
Speed 5mph
Turning Circle 0m
Ground Clearance 0mm
Power 12V Starter motor
Weapons Forklift
From: Nuneaton
Team Members: Ken Feltwell & David Vowles
Plunderbird1 profile.png
Plunderbird 1
Weight 77.7kg
Dimensions 1.00m x 0.70m x 0.36m
Speed 7mph
Turning Circle 0m
Ground Clearance 8mm
Power 12V motor
Weapons Circular saw, steel spike
From: Bordon, Hampshire
Team Members: Mike Onslow, Bryan Kilburn & Jon Dilley
Robot The Bruce Crop.png
Robot The Bruce
Weight 84.6kg
Dimensions 0.82m x 0.52m x 0.37m
Speed 4mph
Turning Circle 0m
Ground Clearance 50mm
Power 24V electric motor
Weapons Brute force
From: Ipswich
Team Members: George Francis & Mick Cutter
Wedgehog Crop 2.png
Weight 24kg
Dimensions 0.90m x 0.80m x 0.30m
Speed 4mph
Turning Circle 0m
Ground Clearance 2mm
Power 2 x Electric motor
Weapons Pickaxe
From: London
Team Members: Chris Glaister, Joe Wentworth & Hugo Elias
WYSIWYG S1 Crop.png
Weight 10.8kg
Dimensions 0.80m x 0.57m x 0.20m
Speed 10mph
Turning Circle 0m
Ground Clearance 34mm
Power 10V motor
Weapons None
From: Edmonton
Team Members: Michelle Wheeley



Cruella passes Shunt

Cruella drove out of the turntable and tried to go down the left route, but was blocked by Shunt. Cruella persisted, pushing Shunt and eventually turning around it when the house robot backed up. Cruella moved forwards, and knocked down the silver skittles, allowing Shunt to rejoin and start pushing Cruella. Shunt trapped Cruella and forced it towards the ramp as time ran out.


Dreadnaut crosses the line

Quick out the blocks, Dreadnaut moved to the left route, but bounced off the block separating routes. This ricocheted Dreadnaut back and into Shunt. Dreadnaut escaped and moved further down the course, only to be pushed back by Dead Metal. Dead Metal and Shunt both tried pushing Dreadnaut, but left a clear space for it to drive through, so Dreadnaut managed to complete the Gauntlet.

Dreadnaut up in smoke

"Hang on a minute, what's this? Dreadnaut's blown some sort a fuse, it's on fire! This could be major, major trouble, they'll have to repair this quickly. Otherwise, they'll be forced to retire!"
— Jonathan Pearce as Dreadnaut billows smoke.

However, after the run, Dreadnaut started smoking as the wires caught fire. The team returned to the pits realising that the robot needed a full rewiring, and therefore despite its impressive run in the Gauntlet, they could be forced to retire.

Plunderbird 1[]

Shunt axes Plunderbird 1

Plunderbird 1 wedged

Plunderbird 1 tried to move down the left route, but drove into Shunt. The house robot pushed Plunderbird 1 back and pinned it next to the ramp. Stuck on a grille, Plunderbird 1 struggled to escape, allowing Shunt to turn around and hack away at the robot with the axe until time ran out.


WYSIWYG and Shunt get caught on the ramp

WYSIWYG flew out of the turntable towards the ramp, but missed and slammed into a wall. WYSIWYG tried again, but got caught with the low ground clearance on the incline, requiring assistance from Shunt, which also got stuck. Dead Metal pushed Shunt, which freed WYSIWYG. WYSIWYG moved into the right route and struggled to turn around the first bend of the maze. As time ran out, WYSIWYG drove onto the grille in the corner.


Wedgehog trapped on the spikes

Wedgehog moved into the maze, and took the corners slowly. When it passed them, Shunt pushed the pneumatic drills closer to Wedgehog, blocking a route. Wedgehog were forced around the springs on the grille and headed towards the spikes, which lifted Wedgehog off the ground. Time ran out while Wedgehog were still trapped.

Robot The Bruce[]

Robot The Bruce pushes Dead Metal

Robot The Bruce headed towards Shunt down the left route, and after a stand-off, drove around the House Robot, but was turned by a slam on the side by Shunt's scoop. Robot The Bruce pushed past the skittles and into Dead Metal. Robot The Bruce pushed Dead Metal towards the end zone as Shunt came in from behind and started axing Robot The Bruce. Robot The Bruce wriggled free, and Dead Metal yielded allowing Robot The Bruce to cross the line and complete the Gauntlet.

"Now, of all the driving I've seen in here, that's just about the best"
— Jeremy Clarkson


Despite their reliability scare, the Dreadnaut team replaced their burnt-out drive motor with the one from the forks and were therefore able to continue, which meant the robot with the lowest distance - Plunderbird 1 - was eliminated as normal.

Rank Robot Distance
Robot The Bruce Completed
Dreadnaut Completed
Wedgehog 13.23m
Cruella 10.15m
Plunderbird 1 4.81m

Trials (Football)[]

Round 1[]

Robot the Bruce scores the first goal

Before the fight, a few teams added extra panels to their robots to try and cup the ball around the arena. Robot the Bruce was the first robot to the ball, hitting it away from the rest of the robots. Dreadnaut blocked Robot The Bruce's path to the ball and turned to knock it towards the goal. Wedgehog lined itself up to push the ball, but Dead Metal spun around and clipped it over the top of Wedgehog. Wedgehog quickly got back to the ball, but passed it to Robot The Bruce, which dribbled the ball into the goal.

Through: Robot The Bruce

Round 2[]

WYSIWYG takes some damage

WYSIWYG was the first robot to push the ball away, but didn't go further. Wedgehog moved in to take the ball, but were blocked by Cruella. WYSIWYG attacked the ball on Cruella and damaged its metal wedge, but Cruella started moving the ball. WYSIWYG was hit away by Dead Metal as Dreadnaut pushed the ball out of Wedgehog's grasp. Wedgehog repositioned itself and dribbled the ball all the way around Dreadnaut and nearly in the goal, where it went in with a little assistance from the House Robot.

"Can he finish? It's an open goal; you've gotta score here...but who did score?"
— Jonathan Pearce

Through: Wedgehog

Round 3[]

Cruella scores the third goal

Cruella blocked WYSIWYG as they both moved around the immobile Dreadnaut.

"Now, I'm not too sure if Dreadnaut is goal-hanging, I think he's suffering a reoccurence of that old injury."
— Jonathan Pearce

Cruella pushed the ball into Dreadnaut, which was also squeezed by Dead Metal. Cruella pushed the ball onto the curved wall, and after a few attempts freed the ball into open play. Meanwhile, WYSIWYG attacked Dead Metal and was knocked into the goal post, and Cruella eventually scored the next goal.

Through: Cruella

Round 4[]

Dreadnaut and W.Y.S.I.W.Y.G., both immobile

Before the fourth battle, both remaining robots had broken down, and the judges had to choose a winner. As both had failed to score, the robot with the most touches of the ball was awarded victory, which they declared was Dreadnaut. In truth, this was the second instance in the series of stock robots being prohibited from passing the second round, which left WYSIWYG ineligible to qualify, thus it made no effort to win through the round.

Through: Dreadnaut


Rank Robot Result
Robot The Bruce 1st Goal
Wedgehog 2nd Goal
Cruella 3rd Goal
Dreadnaut -
WYSIWYG Least Possession



Robot The Bruce vs Cruella[]

Robot the Bruce drives up onto Cruella

Cruella drives onto the grille

"It's the box against the wedge, no weapons on board either."
— Jonathan Pearce

Robot The Bruce charged at Cruella, but the wedge of Cruella got underneath Robot The Bruce and started pushing it away. Robot The Bruce reversed off the wedge and tried to push again, but instead drove up the wedge. Cruella started spinning, but were stopped as Robot The Bruce caught the side. Cruella kept lifting Robot The Bruce up on the wedge, and eventually tried driving away, but drove onto the grilled, where it got stuck.

"Oh! That's suicide surely! What on earth is Philip Martin doing? He's on the grille, he won't get off there now."
— Jonathan Pearce

Winner: Robot The Bruce

Dreadnaut vs Wedgehog[]

Dreadnaut pushes Wedgehog into Sergeant Bash

Wedgehog moved towards Dreadnaut and fired the axe but missed. Dreadnaut lined up a charge, pushing Wedgehog into Sergeant Bash, where the House Robot tried to cut it with the circular saw, which fell off.

"Oh, the saw's gone again! Poor old Sergeant Bash has lost his saw blade! That looks like a halo."
— Jonathan Pearce

Shunt drags both robots away from the grille

Dreadnaut starts smoking

Dreadnaut had the forks stuck in the side of Wedgehog and dragged it across the arena. Dreadnaut tried to push Wedgehog onto a grille, but Shunt and Matilda stopped it getting pushed there. Dreadnaut backed up but stopped and started smoking, while Wedgehog now free from the forks, began ramming back. Immobilised, Dreadnaut was eliminated after it's third successive breakdown.

"There's smoke from Dreadnaut! Its gone again, the engine! And surely this is Wedgehog's Semi-Final now! He's smokin'!"
— Jonathan Pearce

Winner: Wedgehog


Robot The Bruce vs Wedgehog[]

Wedgehog and Robot the Bruce circle each other

Robot the Bruce rams Wedgehog onto the grille

Philippa Forrester: "Are you nervous at all?"
George Francis: "A little bit. I didn't do too well against the last wedge one, it took a little bit of doing."
— Team Chaos learns from over-confidence

Wedgehog were the underdogs, as Robot The Bruce was 4 times heavier than them. However, the team hoped to use the wedge as a weapon in the same way that Cruella did.

The two robots met in the centre of the arena, and skirted around the sides of each other. Robot The Bruce backed up and realigned itself, pushing Wedgehog from the side. Wedgehog were pushed across the arena and onto the grille, getting stuck, and could only hit the grille with its pickaxe in vain.

"It could all be over very, very quickly. He's on the grille...I don't think he's gonna get out of there. Are you sure to take on a grille with that thing?"
— Jonathan Pearce after Wedgehog gets shunted onto a grid.

Matilda and Sgt Bash slice into Wedgehog

Robot The Bruce slammed Wedgehog as the House Robots joined in the fight. Sergeant Bash cut into Wedgehog with the repaired saw, while Matilda left a large gash in the side of Wedgehog as Robot The Bruce and Shunt tussled. Cease was called.

"Matilda's in, looking for a few scraps, as usual, Shunt takes on Robot the Bruce, but I think it's too little too late! Robot the Bruce is the winner!"
— Jonathan Pearce as the fight ends.

Heat Winner: Robot The Bruce


  • Just like Heat A, a genuine competitor was defeated in the Gauntlet by a stock robot, in this case WYSIWYG.
  • The unreliability of Dreadnaut was seen in this episode, breaking down three times across the episode.
  • The heat final between Wedgehog and Robot the Bruce is ranked equal 19th in the Shortest Battles in UK Robot Wars, at 27 seconds.
  • For the Football Trial, Dead Metal was adapted to work without his circular saw, with his arm being modified to feature a large ball intended to steer the ball away.
  • In the results table for the trial, the word "Possession" was spelled incorrectly as "Possesion".