- "We're Firestorm, and you're gonna burn."
- — Graham Bone
Firestorm (spelt Fire Storm in Series 3) was a long time competitor on Robot Wars, fighting in every series of the original run from Series 3 onwards. One of the show's most famous and consistent individual robots, Firestorm reached the Semi-Finals in every one of its five appearances, and finished third on three occasions. During this time, it amassed 33 combat victories, the second highest of all UK Robot Wars competitors, with only Razer having more overall victories.
In its debut series, Fire Storm won its heat by defeating former semi-finalist Facet (self-righting in the process) and Diotoir in the heat final. It ultimately ended the successful run of Panic Attack in the top eight, beginning one of the show's most famous rivalries. It was ultimately defeated in the Grand Final by Chaos 2, where it was the first robot ever thrown out of the arena. In Series 4, Firestorm 2 was the least successful version of the robot, reaching the semi-finals only after an uneventful fight with Bolt from the Blue and a controversial decision in the Heat Final. It was defeated by Dominator 2 in the Semi-Finals, and later broke down in the Tag Team Terror Final where it partnered Scorpion.
In Series 5, Firestorm 3 reached the Semi-Finals by flipping Reactor 2 out of the arena (the first robot with a front hinged flipped to do so). Though defeated by Hypno-Disc, it made a comeback via the loser's melee and defeated Pussycat to reach the Grand Final where it was defeated by Razer in a close battle. In Series 6, Firestorm 4 won its heat over X-Terminator and defeated S3 to reach the Grand Final where it was defeated by the eventual Grand Champion for the third time, Tornado. It placed third once more by defeating Terrorhurtz. Firestorm 4 also came runner-up in the second All-Stars tournament during Robot Wars Extreme: Series 2 and won the Extreme 2 Commonwealth Carnage tournament, in which it represented England and memorably flipped Mr Psycho. Firestorm 5 reached the top eight of Series 7 by continuing to flip robots out of the arena, but was defeated by Storm 2 in the second round of the semi-finals.
Firestorm was created by high school friends Graham Bone (a mechanical engineering student) and Alex Mordue (an electrical engineering student) as the successor to Groundhog. They were later joined by Bone's girlfriend (later fiancee) Hazel Heslop. Firestorm competed in the live circuit briefly after Robot Wars original run came to an end, but is now retired.
Versions of FirestormEdit
In total, there were five versions of Firestorm, each one an upgrade of each preceding machine. The basic design was a simple wedge driven by two go-kart wheels located at the rear, with a pneumatic front-hinged flipper that doubled as a self-righting mechanism. This design helped minimise Firestorm's front ground clearance, making it highly manoeuvrable and capable of getting underneath other robots with ease. Ironically, while Firestorm's comparatively high rear ground clearance it made it vulnerable to being pushed around, it gave it an advantage over other wedges as it could have its front lifted up a considerable amount without having its wheels lifted off the ground.
- "The reason for that was that when we went up a ramp we wouldn't be popped over. It's the same when you see a robot that doesn't have that wedge; if they go over an opponent that does have a raised back, because of the ground clearance, all their wheels will be lifted off the ground and that leaves them prone. With Firestorm, we can still have wheels in contact with the ground even on an angle. It gives us traction and allows us to reverse off if needed."
- — Graham Bone, explaining the logic behind Firestorm's design in a Robot Wars magazine article.
Firestorm also had a top speed of 12mph and a set of active differentials that greatly helped its manoeuverability - one 36V motor for forwards and backwards drive and a 24V motor for steering left or right. This was opposed to most other robots, which only had one motor for all four directions. These, combined with its signature tactic to drive and flip other robots against (and later over) the side walls, ensured Firestorm's high run of success in the original UK series. Out of the arena flips were also achieved with the help of a front castor, which allowed Firestorm to 'rear up' and 'shove' its opponent out of the arena.
- "Firestorm is smoking!"
- — Jonathan Pearce talks up the original machine
The original incarnation of Fire Storm weighed 67.9kg. It introduced the standard Firestorm wedge made of hardened aluminium and housed two separate motors; one from a lawnmower and one from a cordless drill, both running at 36V. A third, undisclosed battery was also used. It had three weapons, two of which worked in synergy. A set of conveyer belts running up the front wedge would pull a robot up the wedge where the T-shaped flipping arm could push it over. A retracting spear, similar to that of Cassius 2 was housed at the rear of the machine.
- Julia Reed: "I have heard that your pneumatic flipper has got more flips in it than Chaos 2!"
- Graham Bone: "Yes. That's true."
- Julia Reed: "So if you actually had to go head to head with them, you might be in with a chance!"
- Graham Bone: "Could be. They're more powerful but we can flip more times, so possibly."
- — Julia Reed discusses the more powerful flipper
Firestorm 2 was updated over three months, and gained 10kg to weigh in at 79.9kg. The colour scheme was inverted to red and yellow, with small squares instead of dots. Firestorm 2 also had a 3mm aluminium shell and retained the go-kart wheels.
All three of Fire Storm's weapons were abandoned and instead Firestorm 2 utilised the full front-hinged flipper, similar to the one Cassius 2 had used in the previous series. It was capable of a higher flip output than its predecessor and supposedly Chaos 2. The flipper was powered by fire extinguisher CO2 gas.
As Firestorm 2 arrived overweight, its larger batteries were swapped for smaller ones, and it had its metal castor wheels replaced with plastic ones. Before the heat final with The Morgue, the larger batteries were put back in in place of the jumping cylinder, with Alex Mordue stating that the cylinder was not having much effect and the additional power was more desirable.
- "Electric power to ignite our Firestorm"
- — Jonathan Pearce
Firestorm 3 weighed 100kg, the increased weight permissible by the raised limit between the Fourth and Fifth Wars. A new chassis was constructed for the wedge, resulting in slight dimensional increases across the board, and the robot reverted to the original colour scheme. The batteries and motors were improved. However, Firestorm 3's transmitter was noted as being unreliable. It could reach a top speed of 12mph.
In some of its Extreme 1 battles, Firestorm 3 also sported the red and black polka dot fur of fellow competitor Diotoir around its sides and rear end.
- Philippa Forrester: "How long did it take you to completely rebuild this robot?"
- Graham Bone: "It's taken the last four weeks."
- Philippa Forrester: "Four weeks, and they've completely rebuilt it, I think that's a huge achievement!"
- — The build time of Firestorm 4 is revealed
Again, Firestorm 4 was completely rebuilt over four weeks, using a new body shell and featuring a slightly more powerful flipper. In Extreme 2, a large steel strip was added to the bottom of Firestorm 4's wedge, enabling it to withstand more damage and get underneath other robots even easier than before.
- Jayne Middlemiss: "Have you made any modifications to the machine since we've seen you last?"
- Graham Bone: "We've totally rebuilt the shell, and we've done a little bit of work on the inside and the plumbing, maybe get the arm a bit faster, but other than that it's basically the same machine as we had last year."
- — Team Firestorm discuss the improvements to Firestorm 5
The pneumatics were once again revamped for Firestorm 5 in Series 7, allowing the flipper to fire even faster than before. The robot also sported a slightly revised colour scheme as well as a removable steel strip along the bottom of the wedge, first used by Firestorm 4 during the second series of Extreme.
- "Firestorm 5, I think may've beaten us five times before now!"
- — Kevin Pritchard of the Panic Attack team, in Series 7
Firestorm and Panic Attack had a long standing rivalry throughout Robot Wars, fighting on five seperate occasions, more than any other pair of robots. During the first semi-final of Series 3, the two robots met for the first time, and Firestorm dominated the battle, repeatedly pushing Panic Attack around and flipping it up a few times, winning the resulting judges' decision and ending Panic Attack's long-standing run of victories.
There was no vengeance gained for Panic Attack when the two met again during the All-Star championship during Robot Wars Extreme: Series 1. Panic Attack exposed its sides to Firestorm, who pushed it up against the sidewall again, but this time Panic Attack couldn't get down and was eliminated.
During the losers' melee of Series 5, the two once again battled, although this was a far quieter affair, as Panic Attack broke down early on, and Firestorm spent most of the battle taking on Wheely Big Cheese. After Panic Attack came back to life, Firestorm pushed it around and Panic Attack retaliated by lifting Firestorm up in the final ten seconds but despite this late aggression Firestorm was given the victory again after a judges decision.
In the second series of Extreme, the two met again in the second round of the Commonwealth Carnage. The battle was dominated by Firestorm, who once again pinned Panic Attack onto the side wall after shoving Panic Attack around the arena, putting the grudge at 4-0.
The last conflict between the two was during the Series 7 All-Stars competition. All of the robots in this battle took the House Robots on instead of each other, and amidst the chaos, Firestorm drove into the pit, so the fact that Panic Attack technically defeated Firestorm is not an accurate description, but this was the only battle between the two where Panic Attack came out on top.
In its debut, Fire Storm was placed against newcomers Crasha Gnasha in its first round battle. Fire Storm immediately charged towards Crasha Gnasha, slammed it into the wall and threw it onto its back in a cloud of smoke. With no self-righting mechanism, Crasha Gnasha was immobilised and attacked by the House Robots, while Fire Storm progressed to the next round.
- "We didn't expect them to turn over as quickly as it did"
- — Alex Mordue, after the battle
In the second round, Fire Storm faced fellow flipper-wielding robot Facet. In this battle, Fire Storm immediately rammed up onto Facet's side, lifting both robots over before dodging a flip from Facet. Fire Storm headed towards the CPZ, then turned and ran up underneath Facet's rear, but without flipping it. It then rode up Facet's flipper, and was flipped over before self-righting with its own flipping arm. Fire Storm recovered, getting underneath Facet and attempting to flip it twice, but again failing. Eventually, it got underneath Facet a third time, and successfully tipped it onto its side against the wall. Unable to self-right, Facet was declared immobile, and was promptly lifted and pitted by Sir Killalot as Matilda attacked Fire Storm. Still, Fire Storm proceeded to the Heat Final.
- Philippa Forrester: "How do you fight madness....?"
- Alex Mordue: "With madness!"
- — Prior to the heat final
In the Heat Final, Fire Storm was drawn against the Irish robot Diotoir. Fire Storm charged into Diotoir in the opening seconds, then after a brief hesitation, tipped Diotoir over. With Diotoir unable to self-right, Fire Storm pushed it over the Flame Pit, setting fire to Diotoir's fur as Dead Metal came in to attack the defeated machine. Diotoir was left to burn and was flipped by the Floor Flipper as Fire Storm progressed to the Semi-Finals.
- "Fire Storm: Hot stuff!"
- — Craig Charles, after the Heat Final
In the first Semi-Final, Fire Storm was placed against newcomers Pitbull in the first round. In the battle, Pitbull quickly grabbed hold of Fire Storm's wedge with its jaws, pushing and dragging it around the arena. However, Pitbull was bounced by an arena spike several times, allowing Fire Storm to break free and get underneath Pitbull before Pitbull was flipped over by the same arena spike. With Pitbull unable to self-right, it was eliminated and attacked by Sir Killalot, while Fire Storm was put through to the next round.
- "I think we're gonna test our self-righter this time"
- — Kim Davies of the Panic Attack team, before its battle with Fire Storm
In the second round, Fire Storm was pitted against the reigning champions Panic Attack, in the first of many battles representing a long-lasting rivalry between the two machines. Both machines darted round each other initially, but Fire Storm got underneath Panic Attack and drove it into Sergeant Bash, who grasped Panic Attack's pincers as Fire Storm lifted it. Fire Storm continued getting underneath Panic Attack several times without flipping it, but eventually tipped it against the wall after Panic Attack almost got flipped over by an arena spike. Panic Attack self-righted, with the two robots pushing each other around and into the CPZs until 'cease' was called. The judges' decision ruled unanimously in favour of Fire Storm, putting it through to the Grand Final.
- "Chaos is quite a good machine, I think we'll be doing well to beat that"
- — Alex Mordue
In the Grand Final eliminator, Fire Storm faced the potent flipper of Chaos 2. Both machines charged into each other at the start, with Chaos 2 attempting to flip Fire Storm from the rear. They continued circling each other round until Chaos 2 flipped Fire Storm over from the side, before pushing Fire Storm towards, and - for the first time in the series' history - throwing it over the arena wall. Fire Storm was eliminated, becoming the first of many robots to be flipped out of the arena.
- "Chaos 2: Delightful. Fire Storm: De-railed, and deranged"
- — Jonathan Pearce, upon viewing the replay again
As a result of its defeat, Fire Storm was due to fight original Series 3 reserves Steg-O-Saw-Us in a play-off battle for third place. However, Steg-O-Saw-Us did not take part due to the damage it sustained in its battle with Hypno-Disc. Fire Storm was intended to be awarded third place by default, but the two teams instead decided to share the position, thus meaning that Fire Storm and Steg-O-Saw-Us finished joint third overall.
- "...it seemed unfair to them as obviously this was right at the end of filming and so they didn't have enough time to make repairs (no other bouts to film)"
- — Alex Mordue
- "We're here for our revenge on Chaos 2!"
- — Graham Bone
Firestorm 2 returned for Heat C of the Fourth Wars, seeded fifth after its performance in the Third Wars. In its first round eliminator, it was placed against newcomers Scar and The Morgue. Firestorm 2 dominated the battle, flipping Scar and The Morgue several times before pushing The Morgue and flipping it close to the wall, preventing the latter from rolling back onto its wheels. Firestorm 2 attacked Scar again and also wedged it against another wall, though both robots had already qualified for the second round. However, Scar would later withdraw due to damage that proved irreparable in the time given, allowing The Morgue to be reinstated later.
- "Flaming, flipability..."
- — Jonathan Pearce, as Round 2 begins
In the second round , Firestorm 2 had a much tougher draw, as it was placed up against another newcomer in Bolt from the Blue. This battle was largely uneventful, with neither robot able to gain the upper hand, due to the fact that Bolt from the Blue proved too sluggish, and Firestorm 2's ground clearance at the front proved too high. Firestorm 2 was the definitely more aggressive, ramming its wedge-shaped opponent several times, but could not get underneath Bolt From the Blue. After Bolt From the Blue almost flipped Firestorm 2 over, its flipper seemed to stop working, allowing Firestorm 2 to ram the slower robot several times again. The battle ended in a judges' decision, where the judges controversially went in favour of the seeded Firestorm 2, putting them through to the Heat Final. Neither the Bolt from the Blue team, nor parts of the crowd, were happy with the decision, with some crowd members booing Firestorm 2 as a result.
- "It was very difficult to call, that one. I think it was really lucky that we got through"
- — Alex Mordue after the battle
In the Heat Final, Firestorm 2 faced the reinstated Morgue. In the battle, Firestorm 2 attempted a couple of times to softly flip The Morgue so its barrel-shape would not help it self-right, but without success. Firestorm 2 then rolled The Morgue onto Matilda, and flipped it again, however the Welsh machine rolled back onto its wheels both times and continued applying pressure to Firestorm 2. Firestorm 2 then attempted to repeat its tactic in the first round, pushing The Morgue against the arena side wall, but the former was unable to flip the latter. The Morgue then came onto the attack, pushing Firestorm 2 around and getting underneath the Durham competitor. As the pit of oblivion then descended, Firestorm pushed The Morgue over towards the pit, with The Morgue reversing over the edge and getting wedged over the pit. Then Firestorm 2 spun around and accidentally reversed into the pit as well. The team of the Morgue celebrated, thinking that they were victorious, however, the judges intervened and awarded the win to Firestorm 2 based on the battle up until that point, and the fact that The Morgue had been immobilised over the pit just before Firestorm 2 went in. This put Firestorm 2 through to the Series Semi-Finals.
- Julia Reed: "What's your message for the opposition?"
- Graham Bone: "Run away"
- — Interview before the Semi-Finals
Firestorm 2's first round battle of the Series Semi-Finals was a fast and furious battle against the unseeded, but thus far impressive Dominator 2. In the battle, Firestorm 2 immediately came on the attack, driving straight under Dominator 2, flipping it and shoving it around the arena. Dominator 2 managed to self-right, however, by repeatedly flailing its axe whilst spinning around on its side. Firestorm repeated the manoeuvre, before Dominator 2 landed a strong axe blow on Firestorm's flipper, embedding the tip in and allowing Dominator 2 to push the seeded robot back, despite Firestorm using its flipper to try and free itself. Dominator released Firestorm, but managed to trap the Durham competitor with its axe when Firestorm drove up its front wedge. Firestorm then came back on the offensive again, flipping Dominator 2 over once more and shoving it against the arena side wall, almost flipping it out, before time ran out and cease was called. The judges' decision was one of the closest ever, being a controversial, 2-1 split decision that favoured Dominator 2 by only one point, eliminating Firestorm 2 from the competition, at this relatively early stage of the competition for Firestorm.
Firestorm 2 also entered the Tag Team Terror tournament that took place during the course of the Fourth Wars. Firestorm 2 paired up with Scorpion. In the first round, the pairing were drawn up against Bigger Brother and Plunderbird 4. In the battle, as Firestorm watched Bigger Brother and Scorpion battle, it wasn't long before the red machine was toppled; therefore, Firestorm did its duty of coming out and self-righting its team-mate. Firestorm 2 retreated as now Plunderbird 4 attacked Scorpion, but then Firestorm 2 shot out of the Red Zone and rammed Plunderbird 4 from behind. Firestorm 2 was warned by Refbot to get back to its zone, which it did, but soon after darted into the Blue Zone and almost toppled its team-mate. Firestorm 2 then bulldozed Plunderbird 4 into the Red Zone, attempting to flip but was lifted by Matilda.
- "What on Earth is going on here, Refbot? Control these robots!"
- — Jonathan Pearce comments on the madness in the arena.
- "Scorpion may have gone blind, and they've shown a blind eye to rules and regulations!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as madness breaks out yet again.
Firestorm 2 entered the Robot Wars: The Fourth Wars/Sumo Basho tournament in the Fourth Wars, but was pushed off in 4 seconds after driving up Shunt's scoop, finishing 15th out of 16 participants. It also entered the Pinball Warrior Tournament during the Fourth Wars, scoring a mediocre 135 points, equal seventh with Hypno-Disc.
- "We've done it once, we'll do it again!"
- — Hazel Heslop, before Round 1 of the All-Stars
Firestorm 3 took part in the Robot Wars Extreme 1 All-Stars Championship after having reached a Grand-Final and Semi-Final in the previous 2 UK Championships. In the first round, it was drawn against Panic Attack, who Firestorm had taken the crown off in Series 3. In the battle, Firestorm 3 immediately turned Panic Attack over, before flipping the latter up against the arena side wall where the Series 2 champions couldn't self-right, Panic Attack was deemed immobilised, and Firestorm 3 progressed to the next round of the competition.
Firestorm 3 was then placed up against Wild Thing in the Quarter-Final round. It entered the battle garbed in Diotoir's fur. In this battle, after a few flips on Wild Thing all over the arena from Firestorm 3, and pursuing Wild Thing into the house robots, while also sustaining damage and pushes from Wild Thing, the black robot had found itself with its srimech open and pinned off the ground. Wild Thing was deemed immobilised, and was counted out by the Refbot and subsequently pitted, putting Firestorm 3 through to the third round of the competition.
In the Semi-Final round, Firestorm 3 was drawn up against reigning World Champions Razer. In this battle, Razer lifted up Firestorm 3 by puncturing its shell with the claw and then retracting with it, carrying Firestorm 3 up with it. Razer then merely carried Firestorm 3 around the arena, with Firestorm 3's flipper flailing in the air, doing nothing. Firestorm 3 was then axed by Shunt, as Razer positioned Firestorm 3 by the house robot, several times in the last 10 seconds of the fight. Despite the punishment that it had taken, Firestorm 3 survived to a judges' decision, however, unsurprisingly, the decision went in favour of Razer, eliminating Firestorm 3 from the competition.
- "It's no surprise, no controversy"
- — Craig Charles, before announcing the decision
Firestorm 3 also took part in a Vengeance battle with Diotoir, after Team Nemesis made fun of the fact that the Firestorm team spend much time doing their hair. Before the battle even began, Dr Zulu was caught on the security cameras "vandalising" Firestorm 3; however, it's believed that this was all just a big set-up joke for the cameras. In the battle itself however, within the first 10 seconds, it was all over as Firestorm 3 only needed a few flips to send Diotoir rolling onto the flame pit, on its side, where it couldn't self-right, Diotoir's fur caught fire, but the flames were extinguished by the Refbot, as the Refbot also began counting out Diotoir, this resulted in Firestorm 3 being the winner of the battle.
- "Firestorm have come back to them, and have met fire with fire!"
- — Jonathan Pearce, as Diotoir lies on the flame pit
After reaching the All-Stars Semi-Finals, Firestorm 3 was allowed to represent the United Kingdom in the Second World Championships, along with Chaos 2, Razer and Tornado. This competition was also broadcast during Extreme Warriors: Season 1. In the first round of the competition, Firestorm 3 was drawn up against NEAT Machine of the Netherlands, Drillzilla of the United States and Whirlpool 70 of Sweden. In the battle, Firestorm 3 performed quite well, flipping both NEAT Machine and Whirlpool 70 over, putting them both out of the competition, as neither could self-right. However, Firestorm 3 couldn't get its flipper into contact with Drillzilla, which had the power to shove Firestorm 3 all over the arena. Firestorm 3 had to work on the defensive for much of the battle, but did survive to a judges' decision, as both Firestorm 3 and Drillzilla were still mobile at the end. The Judges' decision ruled in favour of Drillzilla, eliminating Firestorm 3 from the competition.
- "We're a bit gutted with that one, we did all the work with the other two!"
- — Graham Bone questions the Judges' decision
Firestorm 3 was also due to compete in a Mayhem qualifier for one of the two Annihilators, but it withdrew before the competition started, presumably due to the damage it sustained during the Fifth Wars.
- "They say this is their year, we shall see"
- — Philippa Forrester on Team Firestorm
Firestorm 3 was seeded number 7 for the Fifth Wars. Firestorm 3 sustained major damage to its flipper from house robot Matilda's flywheel in its very first fight of the main competition against newcomers Bee-Capitator. However, Firestorm 3 had already disposed of Bee-Capitator; it carried the underdog around the arena before eventually flipping over the furry robot. Bee-Capitator was unable to self-right as it was without a self-righting mechanism, it was counted out by Refbot, so the seeded Firestorm 3 moved through to the next round of the heat. The team repaired the damaged flipper for the second round battle, where it fought the experienced Sir Chromalot. Firestorm 3 swiftly flipped Sir Chromalot over within five seconds of the bout. Due to the "Class Act" robot being unable to self-right, it was declared immobilised and was eventually counted out by Refbot, putting Firestorm 3 through to the next round. Firestorm 3 progressed to the Heat Final, where it fought previous heat semi-finalists Reactor 2. During the battle, after some tense driving, the seeded Firestorm 3 pushed Reactor 2 over to the arena side wall, before flipping it up onto the arena wall. Reactor 2 stayed there for a moment, but the unique body-shape of Reactor 2 forced it to slowly topple over the arena wall and out of the arena on its side, declaring it out of play. This put the Firestorm machine through to the Series Semi-Finals for the 3rd time in succession.
- Craig Charles: "Are there any improvements you can make for the Series Semi-Finals?"
- Graham Bone: "Charge the batteries"
- — Post Heat Final Interview
- "Firestorm must be ahead by this stage"
- — Jonathan Pearce reviews the highlights, before the decision is announced
Firestorm 3 got its revenge in a fast and furious rematch with the 3rd seeds Hypno-Disc for third place. With its flipper still out of commission from the previous fight, the team had used the extra weight to add additional armour that enabled it to stand up to the blade of Hypno-Disc, although Firestorm 3 did lose its wheel armour on both sides exposing its tyres. After pushing Hypno-Disc around the arena, it rammed the spinner down the pit, but drove in with it. The judges called for a rematch, however the Hypno-Disc team couldn't comply, as the impact with the bottom of the pit had badly damaged its mobility. Firestorm 3 finished third again in its second grand final appearance.
At the end of the series, Firestorm 3 was nominated for the Best Engineered Robot Award but lost out to Derek.
- "Four weeks, and they've completely re-built it!"
- — Philippa Forrester
Firestorm 4 returned for the Sixth Wars, as the third seeds following its performance in Series 5. It was placed in Heat B of the main competition, facing veterans Mega Hurts 2, and newcomers Cedric Slammer and Colossus in its first round melee. In the battle, almost immediately, Firestorm 4 flipped over Colossus in the CPZ, leaving it unable to flip itself onto its wheels, as it was up against the arena side wall, and the flipper wasn't even attempting to fire. Meanwhile, Firestorm 4 also flipped over Cedric Slammer, leaving that immobilised as well, and for good measure, Firestorm 4 then scooped up Mega Hurts 2 and flipped that over, causing its monitor to break off. Firestorm 4 then pitted the overturned Mega Hurts 2 machine, as that was unable to self-right as well. After the house robots began attacking the other two robots, Firestorm 4 accidentally drove into the pit itself.
- "That's all we need!"
- — Jonathan Pearce, as Firestorm 4 drives down the pit
Since they were immobilised the longest, Colossus and Cedric Slammer were eliminated, meaning that Firestorm 4 and Mega Hurts 2 went through to the next round. In the second round of the heat, Firestorm 4 was placed up against another newcomer in Barbaric Response. In this battle, Firestorm 4 flipped the Barber machine several times, and after getting beneath the Refbot and flipping it on its side, it pushed Barbaric Response into a position from which it could not escape, on the arena side wall. Barbaric Response was deemed immobilised, and Firestorm 4 proceeded to the third round. In the heat final, Firestorm 4 was placed up against a former semi-finalist in X-Terminator. In this battle, Firestorm 4 and X-Terminator circled each other, with X-Terminator getting beneath Firestorm 4 and attempting to flip it over with its scoop. After almost flipping X-Terminator into the pit, Firestorm 4 catapulted X-Terminator into the side wall, leaving it feebly attempting to self-right. Firestorm 4 then attacked and flipped Shunt onto its side. X-Terminator fell onto its back after trying to self-right, here, it definitely couldn't self-right, it was subsequently counted out by the Refbot, putting Firestorm through to the Series Semi-Finals for the fourth time in succession.
In the Series Semi-Finals, Firestorm 4 was placed up against the rising stars 13 Black in the first round. Immediately at the start of the battle, Firestorm 4 made the most of 13 Black's quite high ground clearance and flipped 13 Black over, 13 Black tried to carry on running with the discs, butting little movement occurred. Firestorm 4 then tried to prop 13 Black onto the arena side wall, and did so, after a lot of effort. 13 Black couldn't get away, leaving it immobilised, meaning that Firestorm 4 progressed to the next round. In the second round, Firestorm 4 was drawn up against the number 7 seeds S3. In this battle, Firestorm 4 didn't have to do much more work, as it easily pushed S3 up to and then onto the arena side wall, at enough speed so that the weight of the disc and wheel caused S3 to fall over the wall itself and out of the arena, giving Firestorm 4 the victory. This meant that Firestorm had made it to its third Grand Final.
- "They teetered and they toppled, and Firestorm have flicked them out"
- — Jonathan Pearce, at the end of the battle
In the Grand Final, Firestorm 4 was placed up against the number 12 seeds Tornado. In the battle, Firestorm 4 put up a good fight, flipping Tornado over very early on, so that the wedge became useless. However, flipping it back onto the front caused Firestorm 4's demise, because Tornado got beneath the wedged robot and pushed it into the open pit of oblivion, eliminating Firestorm 4 from the competition. However, Firestorm 4 still had to fight in the play-off battle, up against the unseeded Terrorhurtz machine. In this battle, despite having a chunk of armour torn off by the deadly axe of Terrorhurtz and losing forward and reverse drive during the battle as well, Firestorm 4 was technically still classed as being mobile, as constantly turning allowed it to keep moving forwards. However, part of the way through the battle, in a surprising turn of events, Terrorhurtz suddenly lost all drive itself. Terrorhurtz was deemed immobilised, and was defeated. This meant that Firestorm placed in its predicted position of 3rd yet again in Robot Wars.
- "You came, third in the third war, you were third in the fifth war, and you're third, in the sixth war!"
- — Craig Charles, pointing out Firestorm's consistency
- "Now even more durable"
- — Jonathan Pearce
For reaching the Grand Final in the Sixth Wars, Firestorm 4 took part in the All-Stars tournament in the second series of Extreme. Firestorm 4 was placed in Heat A of the competition, and was also fitted with a strip of steel to help get under opponents a lot better. Firestorm 4 was placed up against Bigger Brother and S3 in the first round melee. In the battle, Firestorm 4 didn't have to do very much, due to the fact, after Firestorm 4 had S3 pinned up against the angle grinder, Bigger Brother flipped S3 onto its side, and then Bigger Brother flipped the latter out of the arena. Although Firestorm 4 did still feel the need to get one last shove onto Bigger Brother, shoving it into the arena side wall and flipping it away, and then flipping Bigger Brother into Mr. Psycho's CPZ, before cease was finally called. This put Firestorm 4 and Bigger Brother through to the next round of the competition.
In the second round, Firestorm 4 was placed up against Dantomkia. Despite being similarly matched on paper, Firestorm 4 dominated the battle, throwing Dantomkia over several times. Firestorm 4 flipped Dantomkia into the CPZ, from which the latter self-righted. However, Dantomkia did get a few flips in on Firestorm 4, flipping it over once, and then flipping it up, for it to balance on Dantomkia's open flipper. Eventually, when Firestorm threw Dantomkia into the arena wall for the final time, Dantomkia lost battery power and became immobilised. Firestorm waited for Refbot's count before pushing Dantomkia into the pit, and went through to the third round.
The heat final saw Firestorm 4 placed up against Bigger Brother again, after they defeated Tornado in the previous round. In this battle, Bigger Brother did put up more of a fight than Dantomkia had, but still couldn't avoid being flipped around with ease by Firestorm 4. Bigger Brother's higher ground clearance meant that Firestorm 4 was easily able to flip Bigger Brother around the arena, with Bigger Brother having to constantly self-right. Eventually, Bigger Brother ran out of gas in the flipper, and Firestorm 4 flipped it over again, and managed to push it down the open pit of oblivion, this putting Firestorm 4 through to the All-Stars Grand Final.
After Heat B was finished, it became apparent that Firestorm 4 would have to go up against Razer in the final, a robot that had beaten Firestorm twice before. In this battle, Firestorm 4 had a much better start in this encounter slipping straight under Razer's front (a rare feat) and pushing it into Dead Metal. Razer brought its claw down into a battery and seemed to leave Firestorm with no forward or reverse drive. Firestorm 4 was eventually pitted by Razer, despite a good effort to escape, meaning that Razer, once again, was crowned All-Stars Champion.
- "Representing England, the pressure's on!"
- — Philippa Forrester to Graham Bone, at the start of the Commonwealth Carnage
Firestorm 4 also represented England in the Commonwealth Carnage competition in the second series of Extreme. In the first round, it was placed up against Weld-Dor 3 of Northern Ireland, Corkscrew of Scotland and Bondi Titch of Australia. In the battle, Firestorm 4 started very promisingly, as it immediately flipped Weld-Dor 3 over, who then swiftly self-righted, before doing so again. Weld-Dor 3 then showed some strain in attempting to self-right, so Firestorm 4 took advantage by flipping Weld-Dor 3 into an unoccupied CPZ, and then flipping the Northern Ireland entry out of the arena. Firestorm 4 then targeted Bondi Titch, trying to get that out of the arena as well. Firestorm 4 desperately tried to flip out the Australians, flipping it up against the arena side wall several times, and into Mr. Psycho's CPZ. Bondi Titch then really began to sustain damage, as it became immobilised in the CPZ, with only its hammer working. Firestorm 4 then closed in again, and flipped Bondi Titch out of the arena, putting Firestorm 4 through to the next round of the competition, along with Corkscrew.
In the second round, Battle 4 of the Firestorm/Panic Attack grudge commenced as Firestorm 4 was drawn up against Panic Attack, who was representing Wales.
- Philippa Forrester: "Two quite evenly matches robots here..."
- Graham Bone: "I wouldn't say that!"
- — Boasts from Team Firestorm
In this battle, Firestorm 4 was easily able to get in underneath Panic Attack and flip it around the arena, with Panic Attack showing little retaliation. Eventually, Firestorm 4 managed to flip Panic Attack up against the arena side wall, at such an angle where Panic Attack couldn't self-right, Panic Attack was deemed immobilised, counted out by the Refbot, and finished off by the house robots. Firestorm 4 then celebrated by spectacularly flipping Sergeant Bash, before chasing after Mr. Psycho. When the House Robot had pitted Panic Attack, it reversed onto Firestorm's flipper, which combined its own strength with the power of gravity to topple the mighty robot, making Firestorm the only robot to manage to flip Mr. Psycho, before or since.
This victory put Firestorm through to the next round. In the final, Firestorm 4 was placed up against Crushtacean, who was representing South Africa. In the battle, Firestorm 4 started by trying to flip Crushtacean over. Firestorm 4 then forced Crushtacean into an Angle Grinder, and flipped it into Dead Metal, in its CPZ. Firestorm 4 then flipped Crushtacean on its side, from which Crushtacean couldn't self-right. Crushtacean was deemed immobilised, counted out and thus defeated. Firestorm 4 concluded this battle by chasing Dead Metal, however Firestorm 4 was unable to flip this house robot over, and was instead crumpled by Sergeant Bash's claw, but had finally won a trophy.
- "What an amazing fight, it turned into an exhibition!"
- — Craig Charles at the end of the fight
- Jayne Middlemiss: "Have you made any modifications to the machine, since we've seen you last?"
- Graham Bone: "We've totally re-built the shell, and we've done a little bit of work inside on the plumbing, to maybe get the arm a bit faster"
- — Pre-first round interview
- "Firestorm burning up the war zone!"
- — Craig Charles after the first round battle
In the second round, Firestorm 5 was placed up against a much improved Reptirron the Second machine. In this battle however, despite a degree of worry from Graham Bone, Firestorm 5 easily tossed Reptirron the Second across the arena, as its ground clearance at the base of the wedge proved too low for Reptirron the Second. Firestorm 5 soon flipped Reptirron the Second into the CPZ, into the arena side wall, overturned. Shunt axed Reptirron's flipper, preventing it from closing properly. Reptirron the Second subsequently couldn't self-right, so Firestorm 5 then took its time in carefully positioning the former up against the arena side wall, and then out of the arena, putting the seeded machine through to the third round of the heat.
- "I was worried going in to that one, it's a good robot"
- — Graham Bone, after the fight
In the heat final, Firestorm 5 was drawn up against the impressive Ripper machine. Prior to the match, Team Firestorm told Team Roaming Robots that if Ripper wins the match, they should not attack the House Robots again, and that if Firestorm won, it promised to destroy Ripper, with assistance from the House Robots.
In this battle, Firestorm 5 almost immediately immobilised Ripper, throwing it onto its back, where the giant low-pressure flipper flopped open and failed to self-right. Firestorm sportingly righted Ripper, only to drive it around the arena, again flipping it over, this time onto the arena side wall. Once again, Ripper's flipper jammed open and appeared to be stuck. This time, the Roaming Robots competitor was out of luck, as the Refbot came in to count it out (with the counter display going from 21-29, before reaching 10). After the count was complete, Firestorm 5 came in again, drove in underneath Ripper and toppled it out of the arena, securing its place in the Series Semi-Finals, while breaking the team's own promise by saving Ripper from further harm.
- "Third in the Fifth Wars, third in the Sixth Wars, can they go one better?"
- — Jonathan Pearce in the Semi-Finals
Through to the Series Semi-Finals for the 5th consecutive time, Firestorm 5 was drawn against the unpredictable newcomers, Mute, in the first round. In the battle, although the robots seemed similarly matched in shape and weaponry, Mute was no match for Firestorm 5, being driven under and flipped over straight away. Mute desperately tried to self-right, but kept over-shooting, so it couldn't get back onto its wheels, every time that it flipped, Firestorm 5 drove underneath it, sustaining damage from each impact of Mute coming down to the arena floor. Firestorm 5 then steered the overturned Mute over to the arena side-wall, so that Mute couldn't activate its incredibly powerful flipper without throwing itself out of the arena. If Mute had, though, the result would have been the same - Firestorm 5 quickly dispatched Mute by closing in and flipping it over and out of the arena. This meant that Firestorm 5 progressed to the next round, breaking Chaos 2's record of six out of the arena flips in doing so.
- "Measuring, clinical, and there's the kill"
- — Jonathan Pearce, as the Out of the Arena flip is replayed
In the second round of the Semi-Finals, Firestorm 5 was placed up against the impressive New-Blood Champions and number 16 seeds, Storm 2. Firestorm 5 started this battle promisingly, managing to slide underneath the rambot's low ground clearance several times, although failing to flip it, due to the speed of the latter. Storm 2 however came back on the attack, bending the front blade of Firestorm 5 so it couldn't get under the zero ground clearance. This made it easier for Storm 2 to slam Firestorm 5 around the arena, and eventually into the pit of oblivion, ending Firestorm 5's highly impressive run in Series 7.
- Jayne Middlemiss: "Who've you ganged up on?"
- Graham Bone: "I wouldn't like to say"
- — Pre-first round interview for the All-Stars
As it was one of the most experienced machines in the wars, Firestorm 5 returned for the All-Stars Tournament at the end of the series. In the first round of the competition, Firestorm 5 found itself being drawn up against Kat 3 (for the first time), Bigger Brother (for the fourth time) and Panic Attack (for the fifth time). However, none of the robots attacked each other, and Firestorm 5 charged Shunt immediately, flipping it onto its side. Throughout the battle, Firestorm 5 and its opponents attacked Cassius Chrome, until Firestorm 5 tried to ram the Refbot, before the Refbot moved, causing Firestorm 5 to accidentally drive into the open pit of oblivion. After a while, after the truce was off, Firestorm 5 was joined by Bigger Brother, who also carelessly drove into the pit. This was Firestorm's last appearance on Robot Wars. This was also the only time that a Panic Attack/Firestorm battle saw Panic Attack go through.
|FIRE STORM - RESULTS|
|The Third Wars - UK Championship|
|Heat O, Round 1||vs. Crasha Gnasha||Won|
|Heat O, Round 2||vs. Facet||Won|
|Heat O, Round 3||vs. Diotoir||Won|
|Semi-Final 1, Round 1||vs. Pitbull||Won|
|Semi-Final 1, Round 2||vs. Panic Attack||Won|
|Grand Final, Eliminator||vs. Chaos 2||Lost|
|Grand Final, Playoff||vs. Steg-O-Saw-Us||No winner|
|FIRESTORM 2 - RESULTS|
|The Fourth Wars - UK Championship|
5th Seed, Semi-Final, Round 1
|Heat C, Eliminator||vs. Scar, The Morgue||Qualified|
|Heat C, Semi Final||vs. Bolt from the Blue||Won|
|Heat C, Final||vs. The Morgue||Won|
|Semi-Final 1, Round 1||vs. Dominator 2||Lost|
|Pinball Warrior Tournament|
Equal Seventh (with Hypno-Disc)
|Tag Team Terror|
(with Scorpion), Runner-up
|Round 1||vs. Bigger Brother & Plunderbird 4||Won|
|Final||vs. 101 & King B3||Lost|
|FIRESTORM 3 - RESULTS|
|Extreme Series 1|
|Round 1||vs. Panic Attack||Won|
|Quarter Final||vs. Wild Thing||Won|
|Semi Final||vs. Razer||Lost|
|Single Battle Events|
|The Second World Championship|
Representing UK, Heats
|NOTE: This competition was also broadcast during US Season 1|
|Heat||vs. Drillzilla (USA), NEAT Machine (NED), Whirlpool 70 (SWE)||Eliminated|
|The Fifth Wars - UK Championship|
7th Seed, Third Place
|Heat D, Eliminator||vs. Bee-Capitator||Won|
|Heat D, Semi Final||vs. Sir Chromalot||Won|
|Heat D, Final||vs. Reactor 2||Won|
|Semi-Final 2, Round 1||vs. Hypno-Disc (3)||Lost|
|vs. Panic Attack (6), Wheely Big Cheese (10)||Won|
|Semi-Final 2, Round 2||vs. Pussycat (2)||Won|
|Grand Final, Eliminator||vs. Razer (4)||Lost|
|Grand Final, Playoff||vs. Hypno-Disc (3)||Won by default|
|NOTE: After both robots were immobilised simultaneously, Hypno-Disc was unable to participate in the immediately called rematch, so Firestorm 3 won the rematch by default.|
|FIRESTORM 4 - RESULTS|
|The Sixth Wars - UK Championship|
3rd Seed, Third Place
|Heat B, Round 1||vs. Cedric Slammer, Colossus, Mega Hurts 2||Qualified|
|Heat B, Round 2||vs. Barbaric Response||Won|
|Heat B, Final||vs. X-Terminator||Won|
|Semi-Final 1, Round 1||vs. 13 Black||Won|
|Semi-Final 1, Round 2||vs. S3 (7)||Won|
|Grand Final, Eliminator||vs. Tornado (12)||Lost|
|Grand Final, Playoff||vs. Terrorhurtz||Won|
|Extreme Series 2|
|Heat A, Round 1||vs. Bigger Brother, S3||Qualified|
|Heat A, Round 2||vs. Dantomkia||Won|
|Heat A, Final||vs. Bigger Brother||Won|
|Grand Final||vs. Razer||Lost|
Representing England, Champion
|Round 1||vs. Bondi Titch (AUS), Corkscrew (SCO), Weld-Dor 3 (NIR)||Qualified|
|Round 2||vs. Panic Attack (WAL)||Won|
|Final||vs. Crushtacean (RSA)||Won|
|FIRESTORM 5 - RESULTS|
|The Seventh Wars - UK Championship|
2nd Seed, Semi-Final, Round 2
|Heat P, Round 1||vs. Bamm Bamm, Black and Blue, Daisy-Cutter||Qualified|
|Heat P, Round 2||vs. Reptirron the Second||Won|
|Heat P, Final||vs. Ripper||Won|
|Semi-Final 2, Round 1||vs. Mute||Won|
|Semi-Final 2, Round 2||vs. Storm 2 (16)||Lost|
|Round 1||vs. Bigger Brother, Kat 3, Panic Attack||Eliminated|
- Wins: 33
- Losses: 11
|Main Series||Firestorm Record|
|The First Wars||Did not enter|
|The Second Wars||Entered with Groundhog|
|The Third Wars||Joint Third Place as Fire Storm|
|The Fourth Wars||Semi-Final, Round 1 as Firestorm 2|
|The Fifth Wars||Third Place as Firestorm 3|
|The Sixth Wars||Third Place as Firestorm 4|
|The Seventh Wars||Semi-Final, Round 2 as Firestorm 5|
|Series 8||Did not enter|
|Series 9||Did not enter|
|Robot Wars Extreme||Appearances|
|Series 1||Entered as Firestorm 3|
|Series 2||Entered as Firestorm 4|
Outside Robot WarsEdit
Like many Robot Wars competitors the Firestorm team entered Techno Games. The team entered the football tournament with a new version of Firestorm called Snowstorm, which was white and blue and weapon-less (like any Techno Games competitor). Snowstorm was teamed with Kat's Whiskers from Team KaterKiller. Together, they won the silver medal in 2002. Losing 5-0 to Storm Chaser and Sprocket in the final. In 2003 they lost 2-1 to the Skeleton Crew in the first round. Snowstorm also competed in the Assault Course in 2003 but lost in round 1 to Sugar Plum Fairy after receiving penalties (bringing its time to 40 seconds as opposed to Sugar Plum Fairy's time of 22.57 seconds), despite finishing before Sugar Plum Fairy.
Shortly after Robot Wars, Firestorm was retired, but it has occasionally appeared at live events as a static display over the years.
In 2016, Alex Mordue released a set of files that allows builders to create an antweight version of Firestorm.
Appearances in MerchandiseEdit
- Firestorm/Robot Wars: Metal Mayhem
- Firestorm/Robot Wars: Extreme Destruction (GBA)
- Firestorm/Robot Wars: Extreme Destruction (PC/Xbox)
- Firestorm/Robot Wars: Arenas of Destruction
- Firestorm is one of eight robots to win more than twenty battles on UK Robot Wars. With 33, it has the second most wins of all robots and has the highest win tally without winning a UK Championship. The others to achieve this feat are Razer, Tornado, Pussycat, Panic Attack, Chaos 2, Behemoth and Hypno-Disc.
- Of the other seven robots, the only one Firestorm has not fought is Behemoth.
- At 5, Firestorm has reached the most semi-finals of all robots.
- Firestorm is one of only eight robots to fight in more than one UK Championship and never fail to win a heat.
- Of those eight robots, Firestorm fought in the most UK Championships, at five. This also makes it the only robot to fight in five wars without ever failing to reach the semi-finals.
- Firestorm stands as the only robot with a front hinged flipper to successfully flip another robot out of the arena.
- Firestorm 4 was the second robot to flip two robots out of the Arena in one battle.
- Firestorm has lost to the eventual champion of a series of UK Robot Wars three times, more than any other robot. On each occasion, it happened during the Grand Final Eliminator stage.
- Along with Hypno-Disc, Firestorm has reached the joint most Grand Finals of any other robot, at three.
- Firestorm was the only robot to compete in all three All-Star tournaments.
- Firestorm and Plunderbird are the only machines to name a Model 5 machine. Other machines such as Bulldog Breed entered five versions of the machine, but Plunderbird and Firestorm were the only two to designate their machine as the fifth in the series, rather than a general name.
- Firestorm was never seeded lower than 7th throughout its UK Series appearances (except for the Third Wars which had no seedings).
- Firestorm 4 became the third robot in history, after Killertron in Series 2 and Chaos 2 in Series 4, to finish in its position predicted by seeding, (third) in Series 6.
- Additionally, Firestorm 4 was the first and only occasion where the third place finisher in the previous war was seeded third.
- In five UK championships and two Extreme series, Firestorm has only needed to use its flipper as a srimech three times, in Heat O of Series 3 against Facet, in the Tag Team Terror Round 1 in Series 4 against Bigger Brother and Plunderbird, and in Heat A of the Extreme 2 All-Stars, against Dantomkia.
- In fact, Firestorm was only ever flipped over one other time, when Chaos 2 flipped Fire Storm over, before flipping it out of the arena.
- Out of all of the Series 4 Semi-Finalists, only Firestorm and Steg 2 have never fought in an Annihilator or Mayhem qualifier.
- Excluding Series 3, Firestorm competed in the first Semi-Final at even-numbered series (4 and 6), and the second Semi-Final at odd numbered series (5 and 7).
- Ironically, Firestorm was the first robot to be Thrown Out of the Arena, but went on to beat Chaos 2's record of Out of the Arenas in Series 7, with seven.
- Every house robot except Matilda was overturned by either Team Firestorm or Gravity- however, Groundhog, Team Firestorm's Series 2 entry, overturned Sir Killalot by causing the house robot to overbalance upon picking Groundhog up, rather than by voluntarily flipping it.
- Firestorm 3 was the only winner of a Losers' Melee to go on and reach the Grand Final.
- As a result, Firestorm holds the record for having the most fights in a single competition than any other robot (8) during the original run.
- Fire Storm's first-ever match against Crasha Gnasha stands as the fourth-shortest battle in the UK series.
- Additionally, their Grand Final defeat against Chaos 2 stands as the joint-sixteenth shortest, with Firestorm 4's Extreme 2 All-Stars eliminator with Bigger Brother and S3 standing at joint-twelve shortest.
- The Firestorm series of robots have fought every Robot Wars Grand Champion except the first and last.
- Firestorm is one of only two robots to lose a battle to an opponent and then defeat them later in the same tournament, the other being Lizzard.
- With 8 occurrences, Firestorm holds the dubious record of being pitted the greatest number of times.
- Firestorm failed to reach the Grand Final in both years that Philippa Forrester was not the pit reporter.
- Of the fifty robots to return from Series 4 to compete in Series 5, Firestorm is one of only ten to perform better in its Series 5 appearance. The others are Bigger Brother, Razer, Diotoir, Prizephita Mach 2, Kat 3, Reactor, Rick, Destruct-A-Bubble and Clawed Hopper.
- Firestorm is one of ten robots to fight two past or future domestic champions in two successive battles, fighting Panic Attack and Chaos 2 in the Semi-Final and Grand Final of Robot Wars: The Third Wars. The others to do this are Killertron, Tornado, Cassius, Stinger, Razer, X-Terminator, Twisted Metal, Philipper 2 and √3.
- Hazel Heslop briefly joined Team KaterKiller for the Iron Maidens competition in Extreme Series 2.
- In 2003, Firestorm received an Honorable Mention in The Combat Robot Hall of Fame, in recognition of its active differential steering, front-hinged flipper and for being the only robot to flip Mr. Psycho over.
|Only competitor robot to flip Mr. Psycho|
|Most UK Championship Victories (25)|
|Most UK Series Semi-Finals reached (5)|
|Most Grand Finals reached (tied with Hypno-Disc, 3)|
- Best Engineered Award - Robot Wars: The Fifth Wars