Robot Wars Wiki
Robot Wars Wiki

"Eight machines left in our first semi-final, ready to rumble for a place in the Robot Wars Grand Final The quest for the champion is reaching its climax. Fifteen fights to go before we have our winner. Losers, get ready to be sliced!"
— Jonathan Pearce (only part of his introduction)

Semi-Final 1 of Robot Wars: The Third Wars was the first of two Semi-Finals which determined the Grand Finalists of Robot Wars: The Third Wars. The eight semi-finalists were paired off in Round 1, with the four victors pairing off in Round 2 to determine the two Grand Finalists. The episode featuring Semi-Final 1 was originally broadcast on April 7, 2000 on BBC Two. The broadcast managed to attract 4.59 million viewers, a decrease of 730,000 viewers when compared with the previous episode. According to BARB, this meant it ranked first in the top thirty highest rated BBC 2 broadcasts during 3-9 April, for the second consecutive time.

"If you’re of a nervous disposition, then look away now. Cos this is the first of our Robot Wars semi-finals. Now it was sci-fi writer Isaac Asimov who laid down the first law of robotics: that a robot may not injure a human being, or allow a human being to come to harm. But the great thing is: it doesn’t say anything about them bashing the absolute oblivion out of each other. And so, after lots of robots being pulverised into a big old tangled mess, we’re now left with eight law-abiding qualifiers."
— Craig Charles' introduction

Competing Robots[]


Big briother S3 offical image.png
Big Brother (winner of Heat D)
Weight 78.0kg
Dimensions 0.42 x 1.0 x 0.82m
Clearance Variable
Power 2 x Electric Motors
Weapons Steel Whip & Wrecking Ball
Notes Cost £400
From: Brighton
Team Members: Ian Watts, Joe Watts, Waylon Twiston-Davies
Pitbull mag.png
Pitbull (winner of Heat B)
Weight 79.6kg
Dimensions 0.48 x 1.07 x 0.66m
Clearance 0.02m
Power 2 Electric Motors
Weapons Clamping Jaws
Notes Build Time - 2 Months
From: Nottinghamshire
Team Members: Phil Botting, Ivar Bundulis
Thing II.png
Thing 2 (winner of Heat N)
Weight 76.3kg
Dimensions 0.52 x 0.84 x 0.76m
Clearance Variable
Power 2 x 4 Pole OC Motors
Weapons Lifting Arm with Spike
Notes Cost £1,500
From: Surrey
Team Members: Nick Adams, Isabelle Adams, Jake Adams
Trident Crop.png
Trident (winner of Heat P)
Weight 76.5kg
Dimensions 0.61 x 1.24 x 0.73m
Clearance 0.60m
Power 2 x Drive Motors
Weapons Axe
Notes Build Time: 350 Hours
From: Leeds
Team Members: Peter Benn, Neil Ward, Stephen Benn


Chaos 2 S3 Crop.png
Chaos 2 (winner of Heat E)
Weight 77.4kg
Dimensions 0.38 x 0.92 x 0.72m
Clearance 0.07m
Power Electric Motors
Weapons CO2 Powered Flip Up
Notes Cost £250
From: Ipswich
Team Members: George Francis, Ian Swann, Richard Swann
Firestorm Crop.png
Fire Storm (winner of Heat O)
Weight 67.9kg
Dimensions 0.29 x 0.97 x 0.82m
Clearance 0.06m
Power 3 x 12V 9AH Batteries
Weapons Flipping Arm, Rear Spike
Notes Main Motor from Lawnmower
From: Durham
Team Members: Graham Bone, Alex Mordue
Mace 2 offical image.png
Mace 2 (winner of Heat A)
Weight 78.6kg
Dimensions 0.37 x 1.14 x 0.77m
Clearance 0.03m
Power 2 x Wheelchair Motors
Weapons Lift & Ram At The Front
Notes Aluminium Body
From: East Sussex
Team Members: Shane Howard, Brian Fountain
Panic Attack S3.png
Panic Attack (winner of Heat K)
Weight 81.6kg
Dimensions 0.38 x 1.52 x 0.71m
Clearance 0.20m
Power 2 x Electric Motors
Weapons Lifting Spikes
Notes Reigning Champion
From: Gwent
Team Members: Kim Davies, Michael Davies, Simon Rosen

Round 1[]

Jonathan Pearce: "Craig this is how they line up in the semi. Firestorm against Pitbull. A lifting arm against crushing weapon. Panic Attack the champions against rank outsiders Thing 2. Will Big Brother's flail weapon dent Mace 2? And Chaos 2, my favourite for this semi-final, against the surprise package Trident."
Craig Charles: "OK so let's get this semi-final on the road to ruin. Let the wars begin."
— The first round gets underway

Fire Storm vs Pitbull[]

Phil Botting was unable to attend the Semi-Finals, so Ivan Bundulis was joined by Charlie Binns from Suicidal Tendencies. Meanwhile, Graham and Alex donned Diotoir fur cup pieces, as part of a pact with Team Nemesis.

Pitbull is bounced by the spikes whilst holding Fire Storm

Pitbull darted across the arena, whilst Fire Storm evaded. Pitbull quickly recovered and attacked Fire Storm, clamping the wedge between its jaws and pushing it around the arena. It continued pushing around, but with Fire Storm not immobile and the pit raised, it could not do anything with it. It kept its hold on Fire Storm and continued to drive around, until it drove over an arena spike and was tossed up and down.

"Pitbull being rock 'n' rolled here by the arena spike, and still managing to hold on to Fire Storm with those gnashing teeth!"
— Jonathan Pearce

Pitbull rolls over

Bouncing Pitbull did not do anything, so the arena spikes changed the amplitude and frequency of their attacks, jiggling Pitbull until Fire Storm wriggled free. Both Fire Storm and Pitbull sped away from CPZs to escape Sir Killalot and Matilda, before meeting again near the flame pit. Fire Storm rammed Pitbull, but the jaws deflected the wedge into the teeth of Pitbull. Fire Storm attempted once more, and got beneath the clearance of Pitbull, but was unable to drive its wedge beneath. However, Pitbull drove over the same arena spike and, without the weight of Fire Storm to anchor it down, was flipped over.

Sir Killalot burns Pitbull

Pitbull's revenge

"P.T.O! Please Turn Over! And can the barrel shaped Pitbull now rolly-polly up and over? How ironic it was - Behemoth was beaten by Pitbull because Behemoth was knocked up and over by an arena spike, and the same fate has befallen Pitbull now."
— Jonathan Pearce

The four house robots closed in, with Dead Metal slicing into Pitbull. Pitbull's jaws clamped onto Dead Metal's pincer, but Sir Killalot stuck his lance in and carried Pitbull over the flame pit, ignoring the cease. Pitbull was roasted and then Sir Killalot spun, but Pitbull's jaws kept hold of Sir Killalot's lance. Sir Killalot instead rested Pitbull on the ground, and Pitbull attacked Sir Killalot, breaking the hydraulic arm. The cease was called again.

Philippa Forrester: "Naughty boy, or was it just him being disobedient at the end."
Ivar Bundulis: "No, that was intentional. What they did was, they shouted cease, and then Sir Killalot hung us over the flame pit for another thirty seconds. So I said "fair's fair", if he can attack me after the whistle, I can attack him after the whistle."
— After the battle

Winner: Fire Storm

Panic Attack vs Thing 2[]

Thing 2 pushes Panic Attack past the spike that would go on to decide the battle

Philippa Forrester: "Does Panic Attack feel scared about being up against the Adams Family?"
Kim Davies: "Oh yes."
Philippa Forrester: "You aren't, are you? You were quite worried when I told you."
Kim Davies: "Yes, its fast, powerful, manoeuvrable, very good driver."
Philippa Forrester: "But you're all those things too."
Kim Davies: "Not according to him [Michael Davies]"
Philippa Forrester: "Oh no! Is there dissension in the ranks?"
Kim Davies: "My driving is "abysmal""
Philippa Forrester: "Oh no!"

— Dissension in the Panic Attack team

Panic Attack topples Thing 2

Dead Metal slices the hapless Thing 2

Neither robot was able to get beneath the other's ground clearance, and the opening clashes only resulted in one of Thing 2's bauble detaching. Panic Attack drove into Matilda's CPZ, but quickly escaped, leading Thing 2 around the arena. Thing 2 slammed Panic Attack into Dead Metal, but Panic Attack's low body meant it evaded Dead Metal's pincers. Panic Attack heaved itself free of the House Robot and led Thing 2 around the arena. Thing 2 caught and pushed Panic Attack, slamming it into a side wall near Matilda's CPZ. Panic Attack reversed away and pushed Thing 2, getting a corner beneath its clearance. However, before Thing 2 could act, the floor spikes bounced Panic Attack, therefore knocking Thing 2 onto its wedged front, where it could not move.

"Thing 2 up and over! The wheels spin aimlessly. Acta est fabula...uh, exactly. No idea"
— Jonathan Pearce demonstrating his ignorance of the Latin language

The House Robots closed in on Thing 2, and Dead Metal sliced through the tires and lifting spike. Cease was called.

"Thing is now thing of the past! The reigning champion Panic Attack goes through!"
— Craig Charles

Winner: Panic Attack

Big Brother vs Mace 2[]

Mace 2 lifts Big Brother

Philippa Forrester: "How are you feeling, Joe?"
Joe Watts: "Nervous."
Philippa Forrester: "Are you? Because Mace 2 is a big robot, isn't it?"
Joe Watts: "Yeah."
Philippa Forrester: "Now, you've told me before what your tactics are going to be, and they always work, so what are they going to be this time?"
Joe Watts: ".....try tip him over."
— The pre-match interview

Big Brother drives Mace 2 towards the side wall

Big Brother was the quicker off the starting position, but Mace 2 got beneath Big Brother and tried to flip it. Big Brother fell off the arm and darted away, pursued by Mace 2. The two robots came together and locked into a side-by-side deadlock, spinning around in circles. The robots broke apart when Big Brother stopped, and Mace 2 attempted to lift it, but was once again unsuccessful. Big Brother drove into Dead Metal, but managed to escape.

"A question here of the lifting arm against the flail, which has been largely ineffective. Looks good, but ineffective."
— Jonathan Pearce

Big Brother balanced precariously against Sgt. Bash

Big Brother moved on the offensive, using its rounded wedge shape to get beneath Mace 2 and push it around the arena. Mace 2 escaped and moved on the offensive, but its low clearance caused its arm to jam against the arena floor flipper, and it was forced to reverse. By now, Big Brother had repositioned itself and attacked again, pushing Mace 2 around. Mace 2 escaped and Big Brother darted forward, mistiming its charge and almost crashing into Sgt. Bash. Mace 2 seized the opportunity and pushed Big Brother against the side wall, using the barrier to pin Big Brother in place whilst lifting it onto its end, where it rested against Sgt. Bash. Big Brother did not fall on its back because of the flail, but could not move and was considered immobilised. Dead Metal sliced into Big Brother several times, and cease was called.

"There will be no judges' decision this time, for or against Big Brother!"
— Jonathan Pearce

Winner: Mace 2

Chaos 2 vs Trident[]

"What am I gonna do for a job now? I write Joe Watts' scripts! He's gone! Mace 2 through. Chaos 2 against Trident next."
— Jonathan Pearce

Chaos 2 dispatches Trident with a well-timed flip

Chaos 2 puts Trident on the flame pit

Chaos 2 immediately got underneath Trident and attempted to flip it. This first attempt only tossed the rear part of Trident; the wheels remained on the ground. Chaos 2 and Trident then lined up again, and Trident's axe struck the ground uselessly. Before Trident could retract its axe Chaos 2 attacked with more success, throwing Trident up and onto its back.

"Oh, again! And over goes Trident immediately! This is the most powerful flipper in Robot Wars at the moment."
— Jonathan Pearce

Chaos 2 then flipped Trident onto the flame pit. Trident's axe was still in its launched position, which meant chances of righting itself were hopeless, and the House Robots closed in.

"We've waited for this. Shiny, gleaming after three hundred and fifty hours of work - how long will it take us to destroy you?"
— Jonathan Pearce

Trident was slashed by Dead Metal and axed by Shunt, but did not suffer anywhere near as much damage as in the Heat Final against Dreadnaut. Regardless, it was eliminated and Chaos 2 was put through.

Philippa Forrester: "You were in there, flip, did your job, and out again."
Jonathan Pearce: "Short, sharp and sweet for Chaos 2, joining Mace 2, Panic Attack and Firestorm in the second round."
— After the battle

Winner: Chaos 2

Round 2[]

Fire Storm vs Panic Attack[]

"I think we're going to be testing our self-righter."
— Kim Davis

Sgt. Bash seizes Panic Attack whilst Fire Storm flips

Fire Storm rams the side of Panic Attack

Fire Storm pushed Panic Attack into Sgt. Bash's CPZ at the start, and Panic Attack was seized by the House Robot's pincers. Fire Storm lifted Panic Attack, causing Sgt. Bash to release it, but Panic Attack was not flipped and managed to escape the CPZ.

"A flash of reds and yellows out there, splendidly coloured."
— Jonathan Pearce

Panic Attack is bounced upwards by the Arena spike

Fire Storm flips Panic Attack

Panic Attack reversed over Fire Storm's wedge, dodging the flipper, but scraping the armour plate on the lifting arm, bending it out of place. Panic Attack mistakenly drove into Sgt. Bash, but a distraction from Fire Storm managed to allow Panic Attack to escape. Fire Storm then wedged beneath Panic Attack, but failed to flip it, driving out instead. Panic Attack drove into Shunt's CPZ, but managed to dodge behind the House Robot and get out again. However, as Panic Attack drove out, an arena spike bounced it up onto one side. Fire Storm immediately rushed around and caught enough of Panic Attack on its wedge to push it against the side wall and flip it against it. However, Panic Attack used its srimech to land back on its wheels. Panic Attack then drove into Sir Killalot's CPZ, harassed by Fire Storm.

Panic Attack's last-minute attack

"Kim Davis is doing everything he possibly can to drive Panic Attack into the troubled zones here!"
— Jonathan Pearce

Panic Attack was pushed out by Sir Killalot, and after manoeuvring, reversed Fire Storm into the CPZ. However, it turned side on in the process, and exposed itself to Sir Killalot's attack. After dodging out of Sir Killalot's way, the two briefly ran into Sgt. Bash. Finally, Panic Attack got beneath Fire Storm, but the wedge shape of Fire Storm meant that there was nowhere for Panic Attack's claws to negotiate, and Fire Storm merely slid of the reigning champion's forks. As the timer starting counting down, both robots drove around clumsily, crashing into walls and House Robots. The judges were called on to make a decision, and the reigning champions fell, with Fire Storm taking victory.

Craig Charles: "Panic Attack, you were our reigning champions, you'd such a long undefeated run, but you're out."
Kim Davis: "Well, it has to come to an end at some point, and they really do deserve it. They're a brilliant robot, brilliant team."
Craig Charles: "But you were turning into a national celebrity, if you had won this, you'd have been on the cover of magazines and things!"
Kim Davis: "I'm not sure we'd like that."
Craig Charles: "Ladies and gentleman, give it up for our reigning champions Panic Attack!"
— The fall of the champion

Winner: Fire Storm

Mace 2 vs Chaos 2[]

"Robot Wars without Panic Attack unthinkable? It's happened! Next up, Mace 2, Chaos 2, what a battle. It's happened before, it's a grudge match. A rematch!"
— Jonathan Pearce

Chaos 2 flips Mace 2

Chaos 2 kicked off the grudge match by attacking Mace 2, flipping it forward. However, Mace's flail construct coupled with firing its own flipper prevented Mace 2 from being flipped so easily. The two robots drove around and around, and eventually met head-on. Mace 2's lifting arm was beneath Chaos 2's flipper, so Chaos 2 retreated instead of attacking. Chaos 2 mistimed an attack on Mace 2, allowing Mace 2 to get its arm beneath Chaos 2 and push it around the arena. However, when Mace 2 lifted Chaos 2, the narrow weapon was not in a convenient position to flip it over, and Chaos 2 just fell off the weapon. Chaos 2 then attacked Mace 2 from the rear and flipped, with Mace 2's still-open lifting arm being the only thing saving it from being thrown head over heels onto its back. Finally, Chaos 2 attacked Mace 2 front-on, with more flipper under Mace 2's clearance, and threw Mace 2 fully onto its back.

Sir Killalot drags Mace 2 around

"This time up and over! Star light, star bright! The star of Mace is out of sight!"
— Jonathan Pearce

Chaos 2 attempted to flip Mace 2 again, but either Mace was too heavy or Chaos 2 was low on gas, because Chaos 2 nearly toppled itself. Sgt. Bash and Dead Metal came in, but Sir Killalot trumped them both by simply lifting Mace 2 into the air.

"Thinking it may take it onto the arena, what shall we do? Erm. Erm Shunt? No. Erm what should we do? The pit, no...yes, the arena flipper, I think it'll be, Killalot for us today."
— Jonathan Pearce, realising what Sir Killalot has in mind for Mace 2.

Sir Killalot placed Mace 2 on the floor flipper and it was hurled back onto its wheels. Mace 2 darted away, but was caught by Dead Metal. Despite everything, Mace 2 lifted Dead Metal into the air, which only allowed the saw to scrape down the back of Mace 2's body.

"How do we finish it all off, for poor old Shane and Brian? Er... this is how. One, two, three, four, five... Ooh! It's come alive, has Mace 2, perhaps. Surely too late, though. In comes Dead Metal for a little bit of sugar and slice! Mace 2 out. Chaos 2, worthy winners. Sporting to the end, the boys from Mace 2, but it's Chaos 2 and Firestorm, our first pair into the Grand Final."
— Jonathan Pearce

Cease was called, confirming Chaos 2's place in the Grand Final.

"Well. There was Chaos 2 and Mace 2, but there could be only one. Chaos 2 through to the series Grand Final!"
— Craig Charles

Winner: Chaos 2

"Well, Clint Eastwood was the fastest of all the quick-draws, but we're good, bad and ugly, on Robot Wars!"
— Craig Charles' sign-off


  • Of the six battles in this semi-final, all but one were won by immobilisations by flipping. The one judges' decision in this semi-final went in favour of Fire Storm, who had spent the entire battle trying to do just that. A similar thing would happen in Heat D of Series 5.
  • This semi-final sustained two rivalries - Chaos 2's defeat of Mace 2 meant that the pair were 1-1, whilst Fire Storm and Panic Attack fought for the first of five times.
  • Mace 2's defeat of Big Brother meant that Mace 2 progressed beyond the stage it did in Series 2 - the only returning semi-finalist to do so.
  • In the fight between Mace 2 and Big Brother, an unusual 'boing' sound effect can be heard when the former's lifting arm gets stuck against the lip of the floor flipper.
  • Panic Attack was defeated by Fire Storm, making it one of two reigning champions to lose at this stage, alongside Chaos 2, who fell in the same round in Series 5.
  • Chaos 2's battle with Trident is ranked equal ninth in the Shortest Battles in UK Robot Wars.
  • An editing error in the battle between Chaos 2 and Mace 2 showed Sir Killalot going towards the floor flipper with Mace 2 after facing away from the floor flipper.