Spiked axes or picks were one of the first kind of overhead weapons to be used in Robot Wars. They first appeared in Series 1, with two competitors - Killertron and Mortis - using a pickaxe and a 'tantō blade' to reach the Heat Final in their first appearances. Killertron would ultimately reach the Grand Final in Series 2 with this weapon, with Mortis reaching the Semi Finals in the same series and later winning the Series 4 War of Independence.

Other notable robots with spiked axes include three-time Semi-Finalist Dominator 2, the Series 3-6 versions of X-Terminator, and double Dutch Series Grand Finalist Bamm Bamm. House Robot Shunt was also fitted with two types of spiked axe during his appearances, one of which also featured elements from bladed axes.

Definition[edit | edit source]

  • Spiked axes, as their name indicates, differ from bladed axes in that they typically feature a narrower head with a pointed tip with which the weapon puts all force behind it. This can vary from a simple pointed spike - such as those used by Dominator 2 and Kat 3 - to sharp blades like Shunt's diamond-edged axe and Mortis's 'tantō blade', and even double-headed pickaxes such as that wielded by Killertron.

The purpose of spiked axes is to pierce holes through an opponent's armour, wheels or tracks, often reaching internal components and using the axe to drag them across the arena, as Dominator 2 and Killertron frequently demonstrated. When the axe was used to repeatedly punch holes through a robot's armour, the tactic was often referred to as 'pepper-potting', especially by Jonathan Pearce.

Advantages and Disadvantages[edit | edit source]


Dominator 2 axes 101

Killertron smashes into Behemoth, before pulling it onto its side

Splinter grabs and axes Hypno-Disc in the first Extreme 1 Annihilator

  • Due to their narrow surface area, spiked axes could quickly and easily pierce through armour, wheels and tracks, especially in earlier series. As a result, they could cause major external and internal damage more quickly and effectively than other overhead weapons, sometimes resulting in an instant immobilisation. This was particularly demonstrated by Dominator 2's two-second knockout of Henry 2 in its Series 4 eliminator, where its first axe blow completely immobilised the latter.
  • Spiked axes could score highly on damage and aggression points when they were used to repeatedly strike - or 'pepper-pot' - opponents. Many victories by Mortis and Dominator 2 were attributed to both robots using their axes to cause damage - the highest scoring criteria in Judges' decisions - to their opponents.
  • If an axe-wielding robot sticks its axe into an opponent, it can use the leverage offered by the spiked axe head to drag opponents around the arena - as Dominator 2 regularly did - or even onto their sides or backs, as Killertron demonstrated against Behemoth in the Series 2 Semi-Finals.
  • As with their bladed counterparts, spiked axes could be used as effective self-righting mechanisms depending on their power, design and amount of leverage in the weapon mechanism. Dominator 2, Iron-Awe and the Series 7 version of Kat 3 were some of the most successful examples.
  • Spiked axes, as with other overhead weapons, could offer an effective weapon synergy with lifting, flipping or gripping weapons. Mortis' lifting arm, Shunt's scoop and Splinter's side arms are among some of the most notable and diverse examples.


Kat 3 struggled to inflict damage to Bulldog Breed's armour in Series 7

Kat 3 gets its axe stuck in the arena floor

Roadblock topples Killertron over

Shunt's axe snaps in half after striking the top of Eruption

  • In later series, spiked axes became generally less effective in penetrating through opponents, especially those which adopted tougher armour. This nullified their former advantage on damage potential, as demonstrated by Kat 3's inability to cause significant holes in Bulldog Breed's armour during their Series 7 Heat Final. Spiked axe heads could also blunt or break while striking armour that they are unable to pierce. For these reasons, bladed axes were far more prominent in the reboot of Robot Wars, where hardened steels proved very challenging to penetrate.
  • Spiked axes often have a very narrow range of attack, as most of them can only hit opponents which are directly in front of them. This often made them less accurate than bladed axes or hammers, although some, such as Killertron's pickaxe, were capable of swinging at 180 degrees and striking from both the robot's front and back, somewhat circumventing this issue.
  • Spiked axes can easily pierce the wooden arena floor of the classic series, getting the wielding robot stuck on the floor and rendering the robot immobile until its axe has retracted. Kat 3 and frenZy were particularly susceptible to this issue, although both robots would successfully free themselves and proceed to win battles where this occurred.
  • Most earlier spiked axes did not have the power to self-right without the use of a separate srimech. Killertron's defeats to Roadblock and Wheely Big Cheese were directly attributed to it being unable to re-right itself after getting flipped completely over, while Mortis was equipped with a lifting arm in later series which primarily acted as a srimech. Even some spiked axes from later series, such as the weapons of CV and Bamm Bamm, failed to self-right.
  • Opposing teams were welcome to modify their designs before a battle in an attempt to nullify axes, by applying additional armour to the top of their robots.
  • Much like their bladed counterparts, the axe shafts of spiked axes were susceptible to bending or even breaking due to various factors, including damage or metal fatigue. This most notably happened to Shunt's axe when it attempted to attack Eruption in the latter's fight with Cathadh during the World Series.

List of Robots with Spiked Axes[edit | edit source]

Robots are listed alphabetically. Robots which are not heavyweight entries are listed with a green background. House Robots are listed with a yellow background.

Robot Series Appearances with Spiked axes Notes Image
8645T Series 5, 7 Combined with a rear-hinged flipper, a static pole axe on the back of a flipper. Named 8645T 2 in Series 7. 8645T mag.png
Agent Orange Series 3
Agentorange outside.jpg
AM CVn Extreme 2 Featherweight version of CV.
Anarchy Series 6 Claimed by Mike Franklin to be as powerful as Chaos 2's flipper. Used in tandem with a static scoop and a rear-mounted pneumatic flipper. Series 6 Heat Finalist; most successful walkerbot ever.
Arnold A. Terminegger Extreme 1 An overhead axe mounted on the robot's original lifting weapon mechanism; the weapon was capable of swinging a full 360 degrees and acting as a clamp on taller and narrower opponents. Extreme 1 Annihilator runner-up.
Arnold a terminegger.jpg
Axe-Awe Series 5, Extreme 1 One of the first robots to combine an axe with a flipper.
Backstabber Series 3 The first robot ever to lose a battle against Razer. Only ever fired its weapon once, as it fell into the pit.
Bamm Bamm Series 7, Dutch Series 1-2 Mounted on a rotating turret, so it could strike from all sides. Interchangeable with a flipping arm, hammer or club in Dutch Series 1. Dutch Series 1 and 2 Grand Finalist.
Bamm bamm.JPG
Bash Gordon Extreme 2 Double acting flipper and axe, failed to work in its only battle.
Bash Gordon.png
Behemoth Series 3, 5-7, 10, Extreme 1-2 Twin rear axes for Series 3, an overhead axe for Series 5-7 and both series of Robot Wars Extreme. The overhead axe was re-fitted for Series 10 as an optional attachment which went unused.
Behemoth official.png
Berserk 2 Series 3-4 Famously held off the flywheel of Hypno-Disc and landed numerous axe blows in its defeat.
Berserk 2.png
Black Widow Series 5 Walkerbot.
Black widow.JPG
Bumblebot Series 3 Featured a hammer in Series 2.
Cataclysmic Variabot Extreme 1-2 Known as CV in Extreme 2. Interchangeable with a flipping arm, a saw and a spike, but the axe was the only weapon used.
Comengetorix Extreme 1 Used a bladed axe head in Series 6.
Comengetorix EXT.png
Cyrax Series 6 Successor to Wild Willy.
Demolition Man Series 6 Rebuilt for Series 7 to use a horizontal spinner.
Dominator 2 Series 4-6, Extreme 1-2 One of the most successful spiked axe-wielding robots, reaching three consecutive Semi-Finals and finishing runner-up in the Series 4 Northern Annihilator.
Dominator II.png
Edge Hog Series 6-7, Extreme 2 Axe mechanism later used in Series 8 competitor GlitterBomb.
Edge Hog.jpg
Excalibur Series 3 Once locked axes with Centurion.
frenZy Series 4, MTV Pilot Spiked at the back end of the weapon. In actuality a titanium spiked hammer, referred to as an 'axe' on TV or as a 'meat tenderiser'; electrically-operated and capable of self-righting. Finished runner-up in the Series 4 War of Independence and MTV Pilot.
G-Force US Season 2 Featured two axes, both striking forward, one on left and one on the right.
Hard Cheese Series 3 The first Middleweight champion in Robot Wars, although Hard Cheese did not have an axe in its Series 2 or Extreme 1 campaigns.
Hard Cheese 2.jpg
Hellbent Series 7 Paired with a set of pneumatic flipping forks.
Hot Pants Series 6
Hot Pants.png
Hydra Series 7 Hardened steel axe with a pointed tip, capable of puncturing titanium and self-righting. Replaced the sledgehammer previously used in Series 6 and Extreme 2, paired with a rear-hinged flipping arm.
Hydra S7.png
Iron-Awe Series 4, 6-7, Extreme 2 First robot to successfully self-right using an overhead weapon. Original Series 4 version featured a 3kg felling axe head. Iron-Awe 2 (Series 6/Extreme 2) and Iron-Awe 2.1 (Series 7) featured a more powerful axe fitted with a counterweight, paired with a pneumatic rear-hinged flipper. Most later versions, including Series 10 incarnation Iron-Awe 6, discarded the axe entirely.
Iron Awe 2.1.JPG
Judge Shred 2 Series 4 Did not feature an axe in its other versions which appeared in Series 3, 6 and 7.
Judge Shred 2.png
Kat 3 Series 5-7, Extreme 2 All-Stars semi-finalist in Series 7, and two-time heat finalist.
Killerhurtz Series 3-4 Custom spiked head replacing the bladed axe used in Series 2.
Killertron Series 1-2, 4, Extreme 1 First robot to feature a spiked axe, and was one of the most powerful in its time. Series 2 Grand Finalist, finishing fourth overall. Replaced with a boxing glove for the Series 4 Celebrity Special.
Killertron Extreme 1.png
Mechadroid US Season 2 Uses a double-headed axe with both spiked pick and bladed heads. Only one side of the axe could hit opponents, but the head was reversible between fights.
Mega Hurts Series 6 Featured two side-mounted axes to compliment its lifter weapon.
Mega Hurts 2.png
Mortis Series 1-4 A custom-made 'tantō blade', capable of striking at a rate of three hits-per-second and often referred to as a 'hammer'. Paired with a lifting arm in Series 3-4. Series 2 Semi-Finalist and Series 4 War of Independence Champion, as well as the winner of the 'Best Engineered Robot' award in Series 1.
Napalm Series 2-3, 5, Extreme 1 A pair of rear-mounted 'mandibles', originally a starting mechanism for the robot's chainsaw. Repurposed as an overhead weapon after the chainsaw broke, but only capable of superficial damage. For Extreme 1, the 'mandibles' were replaced with narrower twin spikes; Napalm 2 featured a new overhead axe weapon with alternate spiked heads. Series 2 Semi-Finalist with the original 'mandible' weapons.
NEAT Machine Series 7, Extreme 1, Dutch Series 1-2 Horns sounded whenever the axe was fired.
NEATer Machine.JPG
Obsidian Series 5
Orac's Revenge Series 3
Orac'sRevenge arena.png
Pants Extreme 1-2
Psychokiller Series 3
Ripper's Revenge Series 3
Ripper's Revenge.JPG
Robochicken Series 4-7, Extreme 2 A spiked axe (stem and head) was separately powered on the rear of Robochicken for Series 4-6, and combined with the flipper in Series 7. Dubbed the "poultry pecker".
Spike US Season 1 Loanerbot.
Spike RWEWS1.jpg
Shell Shock (Series 7) Series 7
Shunt Series 2-10, Extreme 1-2, US Seasons 1-2, Nickelodeon, Dutch Series 1-2, German Series Spiked pickaxe in Series 2, later superseded by his signature 'diamond-edged' axe. Series 8-10 build features an upgraded axe made out of titanium, capable of firing in a quarter of a second.
Shunt in series 1.jpg
Splinter Series 5, Extreme 1 Spiked axe and grappling arms.
Splinter S5.png
Suicidal Tendencies Series 4 Armed with a drum in Series 3, and a crusher in Series 5.
Suicidal Tendencies 2.png
Sumpthing Series 3-4, 6, Extreme 2 Swapped its axe for a cutting disc in Series 5.
The Iron Mask Series 3
Iron mask.jpg
The Lethal Swan Dutch Series 1-2 Axe head was modelled on the head of a swan, with a pointed chisel concealed inside.
The Steel Avenger Series 3 Interchangeable with a bladed axe, although the spiked axe was only used in its first ever battle, its Series 3 fight against Schumey Too. The Steel Avenger then used its bladed axe for the remainder of its extensive Robot Wars career.
Steel avenger.JPG
Thor Series 8-10 Originally equipped with a spiked hammer, Thor adopted a pneumatic axe with interchangeable spiked and bladed heads for its Series 8-10 incarnations. One of the heads featured a spiked tip intended to pierce through robots with weaker armour, which was used exclusively in its Series 8 Grand Final battle against Carbide. Finished fourth overall in Series 8 with these interchangeable heads.
Thor spiked axe.jpg
Tomahawk Series 7, 9-10 Rebuilt and renamed TMHWK in Series 9. Its bladed axe head is spiked on the back end, and the axe head can voluntarily be reversed to change its purpose.
TR2 Series 8 Features a small spiked axe on the back of a full-pressure flipper, nicknamed the "bum axe" by Dara Ó Briain. Removed for the Grand Final; TR2 finished third overall.
TR2 S8 alone.png
Tut Tut US Season 1, Nickelodeon Undefeated robot, US Season 1 Tag Team Terror champion and Nickelodeon Challenge Belt holder. Loanerbot. Chris Harriman upgraded the power of Tut Tut's axe to make it a more tougher opponent then the rest of the Loanerbots.
Tut Tut.png
Ultor Series 3 Undefeated robot, Series 3 heat winner.
Ultor official image.png
Vercingetorix Series 4 Similar design to Mortis, with same lifter/axe combination.
Vercingetorix mag.png
Wedgehog Series 1 Described by Jonathan Pearce as a "toothpick".
Wedgehog arena.png
Weld-Dor Series 3-4 Represented Northern Ireland in the First World Championship. Alongside a lifting weapon, Weld-Dor used a custom jagged axehead in Series 3, and a more conventional spike in Series 4, before using different weapons entirely in Series 6.
X-Terminator Series 3-6, Extreme 1-2 Originally featuring a narrow spiked head in Series 3, X-Terminator 2 was also equipped with a larger axe head for the main competition of Series 4, which proved to be exceptionally ineffective and fragile-looking. Both axe heads were interchangeable with a flipping arm in Series 4, where it finished as a Semi-Finalist. The axes of the Series 5-6 and Extreme 1 versions were enlarged and featured self-righting capabilities. Replaced with a more effective vertical flywheel for Series 7.
Yeborobo Extreme 1
Zeus (UK) Series 3
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.