Saber (also known in Chinese as 骑士王, translated to Cavalier) was a heavyweight robot which has competed in every televised King of Bots event, starting with Season 1. An improved version, Saber II, competed in the first season of This is Fighting Robots, and a third version competed in the 2019 Opening Battle.
As one of the only robots in Season 1 to use a flipper weapon, Saber was able to defeat two British robots in succession; Vulcan in the first round, and The Grubs in the second round. It was ultimately knocked out of Season 1 by multibot Thunder and Lightning, although Saber II fought the same robot again in Season 1.5, being added to Sa Beining's team after flipping Wall Breaker over during the preliminary rumble. As part of the Yellow Team, Saber II was thrown out of the arena by Tánshè in its first main rumble, and was eliminated from the team at the end of the first round. In the 2019 Opening Battle, the redesigned Saber represented the blue team, and fought one head-to-head battle against Iron Rooster, and lost a very close Judges' decision.
The team name Excalibur (Curry Bar in direct translation) is also written on the team's shirts, maintaining the robot's theme of a sword weapon. In Season 1, he team consisted of team captain Xuan Yuan Wen Chen, his fellow classmate of the University of China, Zhang Ji Gang, and his father Xuan Yong Sheng.
The team also compete with a featherweight version of Saber at various King of Bots events, named Saber-X.
Versions of SaberEdit
Saber (King of Bots)Edit
Saber was one of the largest competitors in King of Bots, and was wedge-shaped in design. Its front wedges were attached to hinges, in order to be in contact with the floor at all times, and move when Saber is lifted up. Saber's weapon was a long, thin flipper, decorated with the design of a sword, representative of the mythological sword Excalibur. This flipper was powerful enough to reliably turn other robots over, with an air pressure of 3.5MPA, also throwing a barrel high in testing. Saber runs on a four-wheel drive, and intentionally has a high ground clearance at the rear, so that Saber can reverse away if another robot drives underneath it. Its armor is constructed from HDPE and PC, with wedges made out of NM450.
Saber II (This is Fighting Robots)Edit
For This is Fighting Robots, a new version of Saber was built, named Saber II. The robot used a new shell with a slightly steeper wedge, and its armor was constructed from NM450 instead of HDPE. The working pressure of the cylinder powering Saber II's flipper was increased from 2.5mpa to 5.5mpa, dramatically increasing the power of the weapon, at the cost of a somewhat slow retraction time. The wedges at the front of Saber were now directly welded onto the robot to prevent them from falling off. While maintaining the four-wheel drive of the original Saber, the wheels of Saber II were much smaller.
Saber (2019 Opening Battle)Edit
For the 2019 Opening Battle, a third version of Saber was built, inheriting the name of the original Season 1 incarnation. This featured a four-wheel drive system similar to its featherweight counterpart, Saber-X, and a revised design utilizing a steel construction with minimal external armor. The 2019 version of Saber can be equipped with a pair of side wedges to offer additional protection for the front wheels, although these were absent from the initial design render for the finalized robot. The flipper retains the arm-like shape of previous versions, but was redesigned to incorporate two fork-like tips in order to help Saber get underneath opponents.
Saber is inspired by the Japanese video game and anime series Fate/stay Night, where a female character named Saber is the wielder of the Excalibur sword, which is held by Xuan Yuan Wen Chen in King of Bots. This inspiration is further enforced by the blue-and-white color scheme of Saber, and a reference to the series on the team's Facebook page, and the team name Excalibur is also derived from the same character.
King of Bots (Season 1)Edit
In the first round, Saber fought the British robot Vulcan, built by a former champion of British TV show Robot Wars. Saber was in danger of missing the battle, as the team were frantically making repairs to the robot even while it was in the loading bay for the arena, but Saber was fixed within time for it to compete, albeit with a late entrance.
- "These two are evenly matched!"
- — The commentators during the start of the match
As Vulcan was initially evasive in the start of the battle, Saber chased after it, and managed to drive under the back end of Vulcan to flip it over. Vulcan quickly self-righted, but Saber had taken an early lead. Both robots met in the center of the arena, and missed with their weapons. While backing away, Saber's wedges briefly buckled, allowing Vulcan to catch up to it, and Saber also expended more gas. At this stage, Saber was almost hit by Vulcan's axe, but the British robot drove onto a floor flipper, and was turned over. This caused one of Vulcan's wheels to fall out, so Saber became the more offensive machine, pushing Vulcan back and flipping it over. Although it self-righted, Saber's pursuit caused Vulcan to overturn itself by the power of its axe, and Saber continued to push it backwards. Saber flipped Vulcan back onto its wheel, but as the latter was effectively immobile, Saber paced itself to flip Vulcan into a corner of the arena, where the hammer threatened it. Saber left Vulcan idle as it struggled to self-right over the flame jet, and once Vulcan was counted out, Saber progressed to the next round, having won by knockout with just over thirty seconds left on the clock.
- "Our opponents were brilliant, they were great, they drove really well, their flipper's really good. I think they've got a good chance, going forward."
- — Alan Young of Vulcan's team
In the next round, Saber fought another British entry, multibot The Grubs. While the bar spinners of The Grubs accelerated, the wedge-shaped Banger drove under the side of Saber and briefly trapped it, but Saber was able to escape before Mince and Chop could catch up. Mince waited too long atop the arena's circular saws, and Saber destabilized it, knocking it onto its own bar spinner, and this attack left Mince with limited mobility; Banger was also struggling for controlled movement. Saber also drove straight under Chop, and although the flipper weapon missed, Chop's weapon made contact with the floor and flung the whole robot into the air.
Ann Gribble activated the smokescreen in front of the Excalibur team, but Saber still threw the hardly moving Mince into the Grinder, which fully immobilized it. Chop landed an attack but caused no damage, and Banger finally displayed movement again, but was nearly flipped over by Saber's drive. Saber then reversed over the wedge of Banger, and backed straight into Chop's spinner. Damaged, Chop fled, and erroneously hit its own partner in Banger, immobilizing it, and it was then tossed over by Saber.
Two of the three robots within The Grubs were now immobile, so the overall machine was counted out. Saber was declared the winner of the battle, and The Grubs was eliminated in the second round.
- "It was a good match. We hit him hard a couple of times, he hit us hard and broke one of our robots! He's a tough driver, it's a tough machine, he deserves to win! Well done!"
- — Ian Watts on Saber
Saber then fought another clusterbot, Thunder and Lightning, which used their usual tactic of remaining stationary to power up their spinners, but Saber slammed into the blue half (Lightning) and turned it over with a charge. Lightning retaliated by hitting Saber's back plate with its disc, before proceeding to hug the side of Saber, limiting its movement. A big hit from Lightning threw Saber up into the air, and caused part of its top armor to break loose, only staying on via a rear hinge. Saber backed into the wall, while the red half (Thunder) attempted to use gyro-dancing to right itself, albeit without success, as Thunder became stuck on its left-hand side. While Thunder continued to attack the side of Saber, the larger machine was careful to avoid putting Thunder back on its wheels. Lightning drove into Thunder, but did not succeed in righting its partner, while Saber intentionally remained close to the stranded multibot to keep it immobile. Through its own gyro-dance, Lightning flipped itself over to collide with Thunder, but again did not knock it down until it finally drove into its partner and revived it.
Saber missed a flip, and Lightning struck its wedge, causing damage. Lightning then drove into the Grinder, while Thunder again attempted to gyro-dance back onto its wheels. Lightning then delivered a direct blow to the side of Saber, creating a visible tear. With an aggressive charge, Saber turned Thunder back onto its neutral position. Saber missed its next flip, and neither robot attacked each other for a period, with Saber driving over the floor rods, and Thunder eventually landing a small hit. After Lightning also drove over the rods, it struck the front wedge panel of Saber and damaged it, pushing the heavyweight robot across the arena. Saber also drove into the Grinder while trying to lead Lightning into it. Thunder briefly stopped moving, but Lightning was able to rip off Saber's loose wedge panel entirely.
Saber focused its efforts on the more active Lightning, while Thunder remained passive, and Saber rammed Lightning into the wall. Thunder managed a small attack, driving under the wedge of Saber, but without causing damage. Saber fought Lightning atop the flame jets, but Thunder asserted itself at the right moment to rip away Saber's other front wedge panel, leaving it with only the flipper at the front. Thunder started to dominate, hitting Saber's back end before driving under its front, while Saber's balance was too upset for it to drive under Thunder properly. Towards the end of the battle, Thunder hit the back of Saber, and Lightning attacked the side one more time, finishing with a big hit to Saber's front. The battle went to a Judges' decision, which went in favour of Thunder and Lightning, eliminating Saber at this stage.
Saber also fought in a Tag Team battle alongside Greedy Snake, battling Tánshè as well as facing its first opponent Vulcan for the second time. While the four robots gathered, a sandwiched Saber fired its flipper at thin air. Vulcan capitalized by striking the side of Saber, barely missing the main body. In this time, Tánshè launched Greedy Snake into the plexiglass wall, and then flipped Saber in the same manner. In doing so, Tánshè exposed its back end to Greedy Snake, which picked it up and held it aloft. While Greedy Snake held Tánshè up, Vulcan fought a private battle with Saber, until Greedy Snake turned Tánshè over and released it, forcing Tánshè to self-right powerfully.
Vulcan pressed into the back of Saber, but missed with its axe blow. Tánshè then caught Saber from behind and threw it over, where it slid towards the wall. Greedy Snake charged in to assist it, but Tánshè and Vulcan both trapped the Chinese team there. Vulcan landed two axe blows on the chassis of Saber, while Snake once again grabbed Tánshè, prompting Vulcan to pound the top of Greedy Snake. Saber desperately tried to escape, but the spikes along the wall were holding the robot in place. Greedy Snake was able to pick up Tánshè and turn it over, but Vulcan continually prevented Saber's self-righting by trapping it under the spikes. Vulcan changed targets and pinned Greedy Snake against the arena wall, so Saber struggled its way out of its current position, although this allowed Tánshè to launch it into the corner of the arena.
From there, Tánshè flipped Saber onto the arena wall, under the hammer, before releasing it from the wall in a sportsmanlike move. While Tánshè flipped Saber again, Vulcan slammed into Greedy Snake, and the Chinese robot responded by driving it across the arena, towards the Grinder. Tánshè was still hounding Saber in the corner of the arena, but Saber eventually escaped, and Tánshè drove onto the floor flipper, which threw it over. In a head-to-head collision, Saber's wedge breached Tánshè's, but Tánshè pinned Saber against the wall, with Greedy Snake also making the same move on Vulcan. Saber lightly flicked Tánshè up, but Tánshè then threw Greedy Snake into the air powerfully.
All four robots bumped into one another, until Tánshè threw Saber over, this time leaving it idle, as Saber lacked the power to self-right. In the final ten seconds, Greedy Snake held an inverted Tánshè against the arena floor, but the battle timer elapsed with Saber having been immobile for roughly the duration of the ten seconds, and the battle was sent to a Judges' decision. Despite a strong performance from Greedy Snake, the immobility of Saber at the very end of the battle proved costly, and the Judges awarded the win to Tánshè and Vulcan.
This is Fighting Robots (Season 1.5)Edit
Saber II competed in This is Fighting Robots, although it was not chosen by any celebrities in their initial selection process, requiring Saber II to fight in a preliminary rumble, fighting for its selection. There it fought Blue and Wall Breaker, and also faced Thunder and Lightning for the second time.
At the beginning of the match, Wall Breaker drove up the wedge of Saber II, but reversed away, causing Saber II to fire at the air. Wall Breaker fired its flamethrower while Saber II mistimed another flip, and took an initial backseat approach to the battle. Thunder became stuck under Blue, and Wall Breaker attempted to grab the smaller multibot. However, this allowed Saber II to drive under Wall Breaker and toss it across the arena. This attack impressed Sa Beining, and Saber II became the first robot in the fight to be selected for a celebrity team. Although Wall Breaker landed on its wheels, Saber II followed this up with a flip which turned Blue and Wall Breaker over with a single attack. Although Saber II was axed by Blue at the end of the battle, it had already qualified for the main bracket, as a result of its new celebrity captain's decision.
In the second main rumble of the competition, Sa Beining was required to choose his robot first, having just won the previous rumble. Beining chose Saber II, and Zhang Yishan, fearing Saber II, elected not to compete in the battle. The remaining two celebrities sent in ORBY Blade and Tánshè. Sa Beining stood by the Excalibur team, wielding their sword in support of Saber II.
Fearing the spinning blade of ORBY Blade, Saber II charged straight into the South Korean machine to deflect it, but fired its flipper at no visible target, forcing Saber II to retreat. Saber II next fired its flipper in the vicinity of Tánshè, but again missed, and spent a long period retracting its flipper. During this time, Tánshè collected ORBY Blade and threw it out of the arena. Saber II reversed away from Tánshè, but was pushed along the wall while on top of Tánshè's wedge. Saber II broke free, but could not flee from the quicker Tánshè machine, which pressured Saber II towards the opposite corner of the arena. Tánshè lunged Saber II into the air, and it landed on the wall in the corner of the arena for a second immediate knockout.
At the end of the first round, Sa Beining had to eliminate one robot from his team, out of those that had already fought. To the surprise of the roboteers in attendance, who were expecting Golden Hoops to be eliminated, Saber II was cut from the yellow team, and was eliminated from the competition as a result.
2019 Opening BattleEdit
Saber was one of ten heavyweight competitors to participate in the 2019 Opening Battle, held to promote the upcoming second season. There, it was selected to become part of the blue team, and faced the thwackbot Iron Rooster in its solitary head-to-head battle. Initially, Saber made its way towards the center of the arena, before circling around, chasing and throwing Iron Rooster off-balance with its flipper. In return, Iron Rooster’s blade hit the top of Saber’s flipper; undaunted, Saber drove around and underneath Iron Rooster, sustaining a blow to its wedge while flicking its opponent’s blade away. The two competitors circled round each other a few times, with Saber proceeding to drive underneath Iron Rooster and its wheels a few more times. These attacks allowed it to knock Iron Rooster off-balance and at one point launch its opponent into the air. Eventually, Saber threw Iron Rooster towards the nearby grinders, before pursuing and dodging a lunge from the latter.
Slaloming its way past the flame jet and the pit, Saber chased and nudged Iron Rooster across the arena, before once again driving underneath and tipping Iron Rooster off-balance. It proceeded to shepherd Iron Rooster into the corner, using its flipper to shield itself from Iron Rooster’s swinging blade. Saber retreated for another drive, only to bump into the floor flipper as it circled around and towards Iron Rooster. From there, it sustained a few more blows from Iron Rooster’s blade, while bumping and knocking the black and red axlebot along the arena perimeter. After driving underneath Iron Rooster once more, Saber lured the former around the pit, before turning and throwing Iron Rooster into the air with a shove. Saber chased Iron Rooster once more, only for Iron Rooster to strike its rear armor and one of its wheels. Undeterred, Saber ducked under Iron Rooster again, compelling the Team Cybermark machine to give chase.
Both competitors converged in the blue corner, where Saber again got underneath and lifted Iron Rooster a few times. Saber drove away and around the perimeter of the blue square, dodging a lunge from Iron Rooster before gingerly lifting the latter onto one wheel again. Withstanding another powerful strike from Iron Rooster, it proceeded to pursue Iron Rooster towards the red corner; there, Saber rammed and lifted Iron Rooster into the air once more. Saber continued to pressure Iron Rooster in the closing seconds, shepherding it towards the pit. However, just after the clock reached zero, Saber accidentally swerved itself in, and spent several seconds driving inside while trying unsuccessfully to lift itself out. As this occurred after the battle’s conclusion, Saber still survived to a Judges’ decision regardless; even so, the decision ruled unanimously in favor of Iron Rooster, marking a loss for the new Saber. At this stage of the Opening Battle, this also marked a second consecutive defeat for the blue team.
|SABER - RESULTS|
|King of Bots (Season 1)|
|Round 1||vs. Vulcan||Won|
|Round 2||vs. The Grubs||Won|
|Round 3||vs. Thunder and Lightning||Lost|
Partnered with Greedy Snake
|Tag Team||vs. Tánshè & Vulcan||Lost|
|SABER II - RESULTS|
|This is Fighting Robots (Season 1.5)|
|Preliminary Rumble||vs. Blue, Thunder and Lightning, Wall Breaker||Selected|
|Rumble||vs. ORBY Blade, Tánshè||Lost|
|SABER (2019) - RESULTS|
|2019 Opening Battle|
Part of Blue team
|Head-to-Head||vs. Iron Rooster||Lost|
- Wins: 2
- Losses: 4
NOTE: Saber's preliminary rumble in Season 1.5 is not considered a win or a loss.
|Series||Saber Series Record|
|Season 1||Round 3|
|Season 1.5||Selected by celebrity, no wins|
Outside King of BotsEdit
Aside from Saber, the Excalibur team have experience in building featherweight robots. The team have built three versions of a featherweight named Poison, all of which were armed with a vertical spinner. The third version, Poison 3, featured a much larger disc compared to the small spinners of Poison 1 and Poison 2, with its 270mm weapon being driven be a 3KW brushless motor, for a top speed of 4000rpm. The robot was driven by two 775 motors, and featured a front 3mm titanium wedge. At the featherweight division of Fighting My Bots, it defeated Dust Alchemist and Killer in the first two rounds. The Excalibur team have also conceptualized a new featherweight design, armed with a crusher.
The team have also created Saber-X (originally Mini-Saber), a featherweight armed with a broad full-pressure flipper. This proved to be a successful robot, winning the Beijing featherweight championship hosted by King of Bots and reaching the Top 20 at the subsequent 2018 UK International Championships. For more information on Saber-X's UK performance, see Saber-X.
- Team captain Xuan Yuan Wen Chen held his own replica sword in promotional shots, and his entrance to the arena. This replica was based on the game series Fate/stay Night, just like the robot Saber.
- To reinforce the anime and video game-inspired theme behind Saber, Japanese anime characters also appeared frequently in Xuan Yuan Wen Chen's builder bio.
- ↑ https://www.facebook.com/saberkobrobot/videos/1777143429024921/
- ↑ https://www.facebook.com/saberkobrobot/posts/2380682695337655
- ↑ https://www.facebook.com/saberkobrobot/posts/1643152122424053