- "Good power and speed, that's what it's all about, this is an old metro sort of robot, you just get out there, and hit 'em hard"
- — Simon Harrison
King Buxton (or King B, as it was often known) was a box shaped competitor robot with two lifting spikes at the front and a circular saw at the back. It was also four-wheel driven and invertible with four large exposed wheels, allowing it to run even when it was flipped over and could travel at 18mph. It was armoured in 3mm aluminium in its first two wars with the same chassis carried over from its début but the speed was geared down to 14mph to give better control and could lift 80kg. In Series 4, it had a special conductive cooling system on the motors as it was prone to catching fire, in Series 5 it was 16mph, but it was geared back down to 14mph again in Series 7. It was fast, low and powerful but did have a high ground clearance which robots such as Dantomkia were easily able to exploit. It competed from Series 2-5 and also Series 7 of Robot Wars, also competing in the first series of Extreme. King Buxton reached the series semi-finals in its first appearance, losing to the reigning champions Roadblock, in the arena stage. It failed to qualify for Series 6 after losing in a qualifier battle to Spirit of Scorpion, but did qualify for Series 7 after winning its qualifier battle against Thunderpants, who was awarded a discretionary place to also qualify.
In Series 4, the robot's name was shortened to King B3 and thereafter it was renamed King B Powerworks. King Buxton's arsenal consisted of a simple electric lifting mechanism at the front, which had spikes on the ends, and a 9' cutting disc that spun at 3000RPM (upgraded to 8000RPM in Extreme 1 onwards) at the rear powered by a 2HP petrol engine, this disc was only added in Series 3, and was frequently modified per series. These weapons proved to be very efficient in its early years, but towards the end of Robot Wars, King B was strongly outclassed in size and weapons, and often suffered early on in competitions.
- "It's quite a mean little thing, it certainly wrecked my garage"
- — Simon Harrison on the circular saw
King B Powerworks had a tendency to go berserk mid-way through battles; two of its losses in Extreme Series 1 were for this reason, fortunately, this problem was later averted prior to its later appearances. Despite being outmatched in size and weaponry by new robots as the show progressed, King Buxton never lost in the first round of the main competition.
Captain Simon Harrison once built hi-fi speakers so large that they could not be moved. Also he put up 99.9% of the money it cost to build his robot.
- Mike Franklin: "We're the better side, we'll help them out, I'm sure we'll get them out of a lot of trouble."
- Simon Harrison: "Uh, I don't think so actually, I think we've got the faster robot here and you'll find we'll be running all over you."
- Mike Franklin: "I think this is a bit more manoeuvrable than yours, with a lot more battles, and we're better drivers"
- Grant Hornsby: "Well we don't need fluffy bunnies on our side."
- — Inter-team clashes prior to the Tag Team
The team had an infamous rivalry with Team 101, having come up against them in both the second and third wars. King Buxton came out on top in Series 2, but 101 had its revenge by winning the rematch in series 3. The two teams put this rivalry behind them when they combined to win the 'Tag Team Terror' competition at the end of the fourth series. The friendship didn't last though as in the final, with their opponents already defeated, the 'teammates' began to battle each other in the arena. In Extreme Series 1, the two re-entered as reigning Tag Team Terror Champions, but lost in the first round due to the berserk tendencies of King B Powerworks, and the points scored against 101 from its opponents Mega Morg and Diotoir. Both sides blamed the other for the loss, and fought in a vengeance battle to settle the score, with 101 finally coming out on top.
King B Powerworks submitted and acknowledged the superiority of the other robot, promising to continue the Tag Team partnership, but neither team participated in Extreme Series 2, so it did not take place.
- "I don't believe they made this robot, because I've only ever seen them polish it."
- — Philippa Forrester
King Buxton fought in heat I of the second wars. In the Gauntlet stage of the heat, it took the middle route, but had problems with radio interference and was very jumpy and erratic. King Buxton first struggled to go in a straight line, but then bounced on and then quickly off the ramp, before making a break for the finish, before being intercepted, attacked, and pushed back a short distance by the house robots. Nevertheless, King Buxton managed a respectable distance of 10.6m, despite the team barely being in control, placing it third on the leaderboard overall. This was enough to qualify for the Joust, where the team - having modified the robot to allow it to be reset if it suffered interference - planned to charge straight at Matilda. However, when Matilda's chainsaw was started, King Buxton began to jitter again, and were unable to move at full speed - after nearly driving over the side of the ramp, they were pushed off the centre by Matilda having managed 6.95 metres, enough to qualify for the arena.
- "I have to say that it was made to look like we won with ease but this wasn't the case. Our battle with Robo Doc was fantastic. A full 5 minutes of fighting. The judges took over 10 minutes to make the decision. Ok we won it but it really was 50/50. If we had lost we would have been happy as it was such a good battle."
- — Phil Brett commenting on King Buxton's semi final fight
Their semi final was against Robo Doc, beginning a long and storied rivalry between the two teams. Both robots had periods of dominance, with King Buxton being able to push RoboDoc into the PPZ and exploit its opponent's high centre of gravity to repeatedly flip it over, but RoboDoc also proving capable of pushing King Buxton into the house robots. It went to a judges' decision, which after much deliberation resulted in King Buxton winning through to fight All Torque in the heat final. This started as another even fight as both four wheel drive machines pushed each other around, but the current limiting on All Torque's 4QD speed controllers limited their pushing power after a while and King Buxton - with no current limiting - overpowered it and pushed it on to the edge of the pit, where the house robots gave it the final nudge to go down and send King Buxton into the series semi finals.
In the semi final Gauntlet, King Buxton was the only robot to complete the course, taking less than thirty seconds to get through the central route after pushing the large ball into Shunt, who then drove into the pit! During the subsequent Pinball round, however, driver Steve Monk incorrectly believed that 120 points would be enough to qualify them for the arena, and hence did not score highly - hitting bricks and barrels and driving over the ramp to score 165 points. Despite the low score, it was enough to qualify King Buxton for the quarter final battle against reigning champions Roadblock.
- "We didn't think we'd have too much trouble [...] But the problem we'd been hiding from the world was going to be our downfall."
- — Phil Brett, on King Buxton's overheating motors
Due to its lack of current limiting, the motors driving King Buxton became very hot during battles as they pushed other robots, and this reduced their life considerably. Against Roadblock, King Buxton was able to push their opponent easily at first, but Roadblock was able to get underneath King Buxton and push it into the PPZ. It escaped, and resumed pushing Roadblock, but the damaged motors could not last and began to emit smoke, as King Buxton became weaker and weaker until it was twitching lifelessly over the arena spikes, with smoke pouring out of the shell, as Roadblock used its circular saw to cut into its tyres. This marked the end of series 2 for the team.
- "A little spinny thing, a little spinny thing, what good's that going to do?"
- — Philippa Forrester commenting on King Buxton's new weapon
The King Buxton team returned for the Third Wars, with a fairly unchanged machine, the robot participated in Heat J of the main competition. King Buxton was placed up against newcomers Eric in its first round battle of the heat. In this battle, King Buxton immediately lifted Eric, but was then raised off the ground by Eric, and lost one of its spike tips. King Buxton pushed Eric near the pit of oblivion, but got two of its wheels stuck on the edge. Eric reversed into King Buxton, accidentally freeing it, but Eric then drove into the pit itself, putting King Buxton through to the next round of the heat. In the second round, King Buxton went up against Northern Ireland representatives Weld-Dor. The newcomers lifted up King Buxton a few times during the battle, but bent its lifting fork when it got caught inside one of King Buxton's wheels. King Buxton then used its pushing ability to its advantage, pushing Weld-Dor around the arena, before then slamming Weld-Dor into the arena side wall. King Buxton then hammered its opponent into submission, before the house robots then moved in for the kill. King Buxton was declared the winner, going through to the next round. This then put King Buxton up against 101 in the Heat Final, this was seen as a grudge match for the Second Wars encounter between the teams. In this battle both robots got under each other, before 101 was pushed into Matilda but King Buxton. 101 pushed King Buxton with its auto-firing spike over the flame pit. King Buxton attacked 101 but 101 escaped and drove at King Buxton, which was pushed into Shunt, who used its axe. King Buxton got stuck on one of 101's tracks. Eventually it escaped, but started smoking at the end. The fight soon ended and went to a judges' decision, which went in favour of 101, eliminating King Buxton from the competition.
- "...up against 101, the opposition didn't win it, King buxton lost it, when it caught fire"
- — Jonathan Pearce reviewing King Buxton's downfall in Series 3
King B3 had a tough run as it returned for the Fourth Wars as the number 17 seeds, as it had been placed in the same heat as the reigning champions Chaos 2, fighting in Heat A. It still made its mark up against the two newcomers: Atilla the Drum and Medusa 2000 in its first round melee. King B3 spent much of the battle slamming Attila the Drum into the arena side wall and the CPZs constantly. However it also driving over the top of Medusa 2000 at one point, however no damage was caused to either machine. The battle eventually went to a judges' decision, which resulted in the elimination of Atilla the Drum, therefore putting the seeded King B3 through to the next round of the heat along with Medusa 2000. King B3 then went up against newcomers Atomic in the second round. In this battle, the larger robot pressed its flipper on top of King B3, which gave it the pushing advantage as it then pushed King B3 around the arena. However, Atomic's flipper then broke off after slamming into an arena side wall. With no means of attack it seemed like Atomic's hopes were fading, but luckily for the yellow robot, King B3's fears were realised when it caught fire via one of the flame jets on the arena side wall. This caused King B3 to broke down declaring it immobilised, after which, the seeded machine was approached and pitted by house robot Sir Killalot. Cease was called and King B3 was eliminated from the competition.
- "Of all the robots in Robot Wars, I can't believe these two have paired up"
- — Julia Reed commenting on the unexpected Tag Team partnership
King B3 also entered the Tag Team Terror Championship during the Christmas season of the Fourth Wars. It fought with its partners being its long-lived rivals 101. In the first round, the unlikely pair went up against X-Terminator and Invertabrat. In this battle, Invertabrat soon started limping after a few slices from the disc of King B3, and soon became immobilised after some mighty shoves 101 after they tagged with King B3. It was declared out and X-Terminator was left alone to fight both of opposing machines as they both decided to come out of their corner. The remainder of the battle consisted of a mere pushing battle between the three robots, with no real damage and no robot really gaining an advantage. Cease was eventually called and the battle went to a judges' decision, the decision went in favour of King B3 and 101, putting them through to face Firestorm 2 and Scorpion in the final. Before the match, Firestorm 2 had been having problems, and this was evident in this final. Scorpion was lured into its own corner to be bashed harshly by both robots, however this act of cruelty was averted when Firestorm 2 came charging in, however it hit the arena side wall and immediately became immobilised. Scorpion was barely moving itself, and after just a few extra bumps and bashes from both the house robots and the opposing team, Scorpion was left with too little mobility to be still mobile as it couldn't move away. Cease hadn't yet been called, so King B3 and 101 started attacking each other, but the house robots then grabbed hold of. Eventually cease was called and 101 and King B3 had won the Tag Team Terror Championship.
King B3 also competed in the Pinball Warrior tournament during the Fourth Wars, where it finished on the leaderboard a very respectable 4th place with a total of 225 points.
- "The reigning champions King B3 and 101, back to hang on to their title"
- — Jonathan Pearce
King B Powerworks was not too successful in the first series of Extreme, as its first appearance saw it fight alongside 101 to defend its title of the Tag Team Terror, in the first round, the pairing were placed up against Diotoir and Mega Morg. As it had little time out of its corner to begin with, King B Powerworks did very little in the start of the battle, as 101 took on the opposition for a long while. Eventually, all four machines came out to fight. King B Powerworks got a few shoves in both of its opponents, before entering the CPZ and then madly spinning in circles just as 101 lost drive down one side. The battle went to a judges' decision. Due to the immense lack of control of the pair, and the aggression of Diotoir and Mega Morg on its partner 101, the Tag Team Terror Champions lost their title as the decision went in favour of Diotoir and Mega Morg, there was great argument within the losing team as to who was responsible for the loss.
- "So who was to blame? And who is the better robot of the two?"
- — Jonathan Pearce, in the build-up for the vengeance battle
As a result of this failure in the Tag Team Terror tournament, both 101 and King B Powerworks organised a vengeance battle to go up against each other later on in the series. King B Powerworks was easily the more agile machine, the two machines slammed into the other to begin with, however little visible damage was caused to either robot. However, King B Powerworks suddenly went berserk once again after being steered into the CPZ and then axed in a crucial place by house robot Shunt, King B Powerworks uncontrollably ran at speed into one arena wall after the other. This was until King B Powerworks was eventually caught by Sergeant Bash, and put down the pit of oblivion, taking the house robot with it. Cease was called and 101 was declared the winner of the vengeance battle.
- "This could be the first Wild Card robot to beat one of the veterans"
- — Julia Reed shows her confidence in Draven
King B Powerworks redeemed itself when it was chosen to act as a veteran against a Wild Card Warrior during Extreme Series 1, it was placed up against Draven. The two machines glanced off each other until King B Powerworks then slid beneath Draven in a technique often used by Panic Attack. Steering Draven into the pit release button, King B Powerworks then dumped the newcomers down into the pit of oblivion, declaring the Series 2 Semi-Finalists the winner of the battle.
King B Powerworks' final appearance in Extreme was in a Mayhem qualifier battle, for a right to fight in the second annihilator of the series. Here, it was placed up against Tornado and The Steel Avenger. King B Powerworks played very little part in the opening part of the fight, as The Steel Avenger took on Tornado. Tornado was able to scoop and shove around The Steel Avenger with their axe slammed down on the box-shaped machine, King B couldn't quite keep up with the opposing two robots until eventually King B Powerworks stabbed Tornado side on with its forks with The Steel Avenger axing down on the Series 4 Semi-Finalists, the two immobilised Tornado, and they were soon counted out by Refbot. Soon after, King B Powerworks evaded damage from the flipper of The Steel Avenger, but then suddenly lost one of its wheels after the Willoughby machine rammed it with its front ramming blade. However, The Steel Avenger was hurled onto its side by Matilda's new flywheel in the closing seconds of the bout, before cease was called for the battle to go to a judges' decision between the remaining two competitors. The judges, based on damage, awarded the win to The Steel Avenger, also naming the fight as the best Mayhem in Extreme.
- "The most important thing though, Tornado, he was out, that's all I care about"
- — Simon Harrison after the decision
- "Experienced, quick, manoeuvrable, worth watching closely"
- — Jonathan Pearce introduces King B Powerworks to Series 5
An unseeded King B Powerworks returned for the Fifth Wars and was placed up against previous heat finalists but surprisingly unseeded Kronic 2 in the first round of the heat. King B Powerworks was almost flipped over at the start of the battle, but it recovered. King B Powerworks then did all of the aggressive work, shoving and lifting the considerably more sluggish Kronic 2 all around the arena. Its lifting spikes put a few holes in the sides of Kronic 2, whilst its new blade did some minor damage as well. Kronic 2's spikes were then set on fire by the flame pit, before the battle then went to a judges' decision. The decision unsurprisingly went in favour of King B Powerworks, putting them through to the next round of the heat. King B Powerworks was then placed up against the number 11 seeds Dominator 2 in the second round, the unseeded underdogs were outclassed in weapon power in this battle as it couldn't cause much damage to its seeded opponent at all, its shell was also axed constantly throughout the battle, and was quickly full of holes. However King B Powerworks showed its durability by holding on for a judges' decision, but it the decision unsurprisingly went in favour of Dominator 2, eliminating King B Powerworks from the competition due to the damage it had sustained in the battle.
- Jayne Middlemiss: "Biggest Fear?"
- Grant Hornsby: "Biggest fear: Spinners, flippers, crushers, axes, hammers..."
- Simon Harrison: "...other robots basically."
- — Series 7 Pre-first round interview
King B Powerworks started in the same heat as the number 5 seeds Dantomkia, and was expected to progress to the second round. Simon Harrison claimed the robot's best weapon was 'good power and speed', but this didn't show early on in its first round battle where it was drawn up against Dantomkia, Hassocks Hog 2 and Rick. After Dantomkia immobilised Hassocks Hog 2 by flipping it over, it grabbed Rick and King B Powerworks slammed into the seeded machine, creating holes in the armour. For a while, King B Powerworks could merely attempt to keep up with Dantomkia as it nearly managed to flip Rick out of the arena. King B then charged in and shoved Dantomkia into the arena side wall as Rick stayed propped up against the arena side wall, before soon crashing down. King B escaped but was then chased by the seeded machine. A few flips from Dantomkia didn't seem to cause much damage, King B then got caught on Dantomkia's top, but then drove off and was unaffected. Very good driving allowed King B to escape Dantomkia and attack Rick alongside Dantomkia at the same time, before cease was called for the battle to go to a judges' decision for the remaining three competitors.
- "We know the hog has gone, Rick for me will be the other decision by the judges, because Dantomkia and King B Powerworks just looked too strong"
- — Jonathan Pearce awaits the decision
King B Powerworks was then placed up against Team Vader and their new IG-88 machine in the second round. King B was constantly trying to meet IG-88 at the wedge shaped front, to avoid the spinning weapon at the rear. King B tried to steer all the way around IG-88 to get a good run up on Team Vader's machine, but eventually it gave up and charged into IG-88, and got a slam from the axe, which sent it rolling into the arena side wall, where it then became immobilised. King B Powerworks was then later counted out by Refbot, dragged onto the arena floor flipper by the house robots and flipped. King B Powerworks' lifting forks were pointing upwards, and were jammed in that position after the collision with IG-88, the flip from the arena floor flipper put King B Powerworks upside down, and with the forks pointing upwards, the robot's wheels were kept off the ground. Cease was soon called, and King B Powerworks was eliminated from the competition as a result.
- "I'm just worried that we're going to get flipped out by Dantomkia really quickly, I mean, I like a long drawn out fight, I don't like something that's over too quickly"
- — Simon Harrison before Round 1 of the All-Stars
King B Powerworks, as one of the oldest competing robots in the Seventh Wars, returned for the All-Stars Tournament at the end of the series. In the first round, it was placed up against Pussycat, Behemoth and Dantomkia. In the battle, Pussycat chose to target it with its twin four-toothed blades, which was added mainly in the hope to slice King B Powerworks' armour right off. Pussycat occupied King B's attention for much of the battle, and snapped the right drive train on the first hit. After this, King B Powerworks could only go round in circles. As Dantomkia defeated Behemoth by flipping it out of the arena in the opening few seconds, Dantomkia then targeted King B Powerworks, who tried itself to ram Dantomkia head on itself. However, Pussycat leaped in again, slicing both robots with its disc, causing it to go on its side. This caused resistance to collapse in King B, and Simon Harrison's original fear was met as Dantomkia then carried King B over to the arena side wall and then threw the Series 2 Semi-Finalists out of the arena, thus eliminating King B Powerworks from the competition.
|KING BUXTON - RESULTS|
|The Second Wars - UK Championship|
|Heat I, Gauntlet||10.6m (3rd)||Qualified|
|Heat I, Trial (Joust)||6.95m (2nd)||Qualified|
|Heat I, Semi-Final||vs. Robo Doc||Won|
|Heat I, Final||vs. All Torque||Won|
|Semi-Final 2, Gauntlet||Completed (1st)||Qualified|
|Semi-Final 2, Trial (Pinball)||165 Points (3rd)||Qualified|
|Semi-Final 2, Arena||vs. Roadblock (1)||Lost|
|The Third Wars - UK Championship|
|Heat J, Round 1||vs. Eric||Won|
|Heat J, Round 2||vs. Weld-Dor||Won|
|Heat J, Final||vs. 101||Lost|
|KING B3 - RESULTS|
|The Fourth Wars - UK Championship|
17th Seed, Heat Semi-Final
|Heat A, Eliminator||vs. Attila the Drum, Medusa 2000||Qualified|
|Heat A, Semi-Final||vs. Atomic||Lost|
|Tag Team Terror|
with 101, Champion
|Round 1||vs. X-Terminator 2 & Invertabrat||Won|
|Final||vs. Firestorm 2 & Scorpion||Won|
|KING B POWERWORKS - RESULTS|
|Extreme Series 1|
|Tag Team Terror|
with 101, Round 1
|Round 1||vs. Mega Morg & Diotoir||Lost|
|Mayhem & Annihilator|
|Mayhem Qualifier||vs. Tornado, The Steel Avenger||Eliminated|
Vengeance & Wild Card Warriors
|Wild Card Warriors||vs. Draven||Won|
|The Fifth Wars - UK Championship|
Heat, Round 2
|Heat F, Eliminator||vs. Kronic 2||Won|
|Heat F, Semi Final||vs. Dominator 2 (11)||Lost|
|The Seventh Wars - UK Championship|
Heat, Round 2
|Heat C, Round 1||vs. Rick, Hassocks Hog 2, Dantomkia (5)||Qualified|
|Heat C, Round 2||vs. IG-88||Lost|
|Round 1||vs. Behemoth, Pussycat, Dantomkia||Eliminated|
- Wins: 10
- Losses: 9
- Series 1: Did not enter
- Series 2: Semi-Finals, Arena
- Series 3: Heat Final
- Series 4: Heat, Round 2
- Series 5: Heat, Round 2
- Series 6: Failed to qualify
- Series 7: Heat, Round 2
- King Buxton was profiled in Robot Wars: The Ultimate Guide.
- King Buxton was one of 22 robots who were thrown out of the arena in their final appearance on the show.
- Despite being outmatched in size and weaponry by new robots as the show progressed, King Buxton never lost in the first round of the main competition.
- King Buxton was originally named after a character in the Magic Roundabout film Dougal and the Blue Cat, or Pollux et le Chat Bleu in its original French dub.
- King B Powerworks was named after the robot's motors, which ran at 36 volts; this was the highest voltage that the rules would allow.
- Each version of King Buxton became more expensive, the King Buxton seen in Series 3 cost £1500, King B3 cost £4000. Initially the cost of the motors was sponsored by Dominion Computers.
- King Buxton was one of 23 robots to have completed The Gauntlet. Similar to Killertron, it failed to complete it in the heats, but succeeded in the Series Semi-Finals.
- King B3 is one of only seven robots to break 200 points in a Pinball tournament. Others to have achieved this are Gemini, Killerhurtz, Spawn of Scutter, Panic Attack, Roadblock and Razer.
- King Buxton was one of five seeds for the Fourth Wars that reached the heat final of the Third Wars but fell in the second round of the heat in this series, it shares this statistic with Dreadnaut, Aggrobot, Berserk 2 and the Dartford Girls Grammar.
- King B Powerworks was one of only two previous Semi-Finalists that was not seeded for the Seventh Wars, the other being Black and Blue, thus making it the only robot, as Black and Blue only reached the Series Semi-Finals in the form of Mousetrap.
- King B3 had a brief cameo on the sitcom Spaced in the episode "Mettle."
http://www.thatphilbrettguy.com/mred/robots/index.html - Home page (series 2)