- "A unique shape, with a clear top cover to show the components inside, that's sensible... hang on, is it? No it's not, it's daft!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
Ripper was a robot that competed in Series 7 of Robot Wars, entered by Team Roaming Robots. It reached the Heat Final in Series 7, where it was flipped out of the arena by the second seed Firestorm 5. Ripper also competed in the Annihilator at the end of the series, finishing runner-up to the previous Annihilator champion, Kan-Opener.
After the announcement of Series 9, John Findlay revealed that Ripper was "not allowed" to compete in the rebooted Robot Wars due to it being "unfair" to other competitors, as he is the owner of a live roboteering event that formerly used the Robot Wars brand.
Ripper was a large wedge-shaped robot painted green and yellow and armed with a very large pneumatic flipper. Despite its size, Ripper's mechanics were isolated to one spot, with most of the robot's insides being empty. This allowed Ripper to take a significant amount of damage before being immobilised, which also compensated for its relatively weak armour.
The flipper, though low pressure, was capable of throwing a robot out of the arena as it used two rams rather than one, but despite coming close on several occasions, it never achieved this.
- "Ripper's flipper was by far NOT the most powerful, but it was big, that was its biggest strength, it had the power and size the flip robots over and out of the arena... and because the pneumatics only ran on 10 bar, we had over 45 flips before getting low on gas!"
- — John Findlay
Ripper's flipper was said to be interchangeable with a disc and an axe, but John Findlay later revealed that this was not actually true, and that he had made it up for the benefit of viewers.
Ripper had previously attempted to enter Series 5, invertible and equipped with two powerful blades. These blades were how the robot got its name, as they ripped apart several sheets of metal and oil drums in testing. Its name was originally stylised as R.I.P.P.E.R., an acronym for "Rest in pieces pathetic elderly robots", but this was dropped after Series 5. R.I.P.P.E.R. fought The Alien at the qualifiers, but the robot's blades were banned by the rules, and without them, Ripper lost the battle and failed to qualify. Fortunately for Team Roaming Robots, they had already qualified with T-Bone, who fought instead, but went out in Round 1.
In Series 6, Ripper 2 attempted to qualify, which featured an electric lifter and a large spinning disc on the back. Ripper 2 was due to fight Double Trouble, GBH 2 and Infernal Contraption at the qualifiers, but failed to start before the battle, and had to withdraw before the qualifier, and consequently failed to qualify again.
When the flipper-equipped machine tried for Series 7, there was instant drama.
- "...just finished and entered the arena for the first time, a small bit of metal swarf had got into the circuit board of the speed controller, and we only moved about 4 meters before it stopped…. Luckily for us our flipper still worked so we kept firing it when robots came near, and the look of the robot got us qualified without having to do anything !!! Lucky or what !!"
- — John Findlay
In Round 1 of Series 7, Ripper fought veterans to Robot Wars Aggrobot, Team Ming's Zorro and twice Round 1 drop-outs Reptirron The Second. Ripper started by avoiding the other robots. However, a few seconds later, Ripper flipped Zorro over. Ripper then flipped Aggrobot with force but it was invertible. Ripper tried to flip Aggrobot, missing but managed to flip it again a few seconds later. Another flip from Ripper and Aggrobot bounced off Reptirron The Second. Ripper let Aggrobot and Reptirron do the fighting for a while, seemingly taking a break from the action. Ripper then rammed into Reptirron, missing another flip. Ripper then chased the other two robots and Zorro who was counted out, but never used its flipper while chasing the rest. Cease was called after Zorro was pitted. The judges decided that Ripper and Reptirron The Second would go through.In the second round, Ripper was pitted against fellow newcomers Daisy-Cutter. Ripper started by flipping Daisy-Cutter over right at the start, in the quickest immobilisation ever. Ripper left Daisy-Cutter on its side to be counted out. Then, Ripper flipped Shunt. However, it landed on its wheels. Ripper then used its flipper to block Shunt's axe from hitting its armour. Sir Killalot came in to help Shunt out by pinning Ripper against the wall. Sir Killalot pushed Ripper to the flame pit but to no avail. Then, it flipped Refbot almost onto its back, but, thanks to inadvertent help from Shunt, managed to get it over. Ripper then flipped Shunt over and got its axe stuck on Sir Killalot's lance, causing Sir Killalot's breastplate to come off. Ripper drove around the arena and was flipped by the floor flipper. Sir Killalot then pushed Ripper into the pit.
In the heat final, Ripper went up against the second seeds Firestorm 5. Before the match, Team Firestorm had casually warned Team Roaming Robots not to attack the house robots if Ripper won the battle. Ripper was rammed into the arena side-wall by Firestorm 5, ending on its back. Ripper self-righted and started dodging Firestorm 5 until it missed a flip and Firestorm got underneath. Getting flipped against the arena wall again, Ripper was stuck. Refbot then counted Ripper out. Firestorm 5 finally finished it by flipping Ripper out of the arena.
- "While attacking the House Robots [in round 2] we had damaged our scoop, and it wasn't sitting flat on the floor anymore, so we knew we couldn't just drive underneath the front of him. Eventually he got underneath and flipped us out of the arena. There was one point in the fight where I reversed... if i'd gone forwards instead, I could have got under his side and flipped him..... but we'll never know what could have happened."
- — John Findlay
Team Roaming Robots consider it a lucky break that Ripper was flipped out of the arena, for Team Firestorm had pledged to destroy Ripper should they win the match, with assistance from the House Robots, as a form of vengeance for Ripper's attacks in the second round.
Ripper returned for the Annihilator at the end of the Seventh Wars. It fought Ewe 2, Raging Knightmare, Kan-Opener, Robochicken and Flippa. Ripper managed to purge the arena in its opening round, managing to flip Robochicken over immediately, before rushing Ewe 2, who was attacking Flippa. In a skillful flip, Ripper threw Ewe 2 over, sticking its open flipping arm over the side wall, and pinning it on top of Flippa, effectively immobilising both robots. It then attacked Raging Knightmare and Kan-Opener, flipping both into side walls and CPZs, but these two managed to escape, and the fight was finally concluded with the defeat of Robochicken.
However, Flippa was announced to have broken down irreparably, and was forced to drop out, leaving the remaining four to fight on.
Ripper was one of the more aggressive in its next fight, immediately targeting Raging Knightmare due to its ability to flip Ripper into positions it cannot self-right from. Raging Knightmare was tossed around the arena by Ripper in the opening stages, and the four active robots met together, all to launch an attack on Raging Knightmare. However, while the targeted machine self-righted, Ripper flipped Ewe 2 onto its own raised flipper, causing the robot to be left stranded on its side. With Ewe 2 immobile, Ripper progressed, even though Raging Knightmare was almost pitted before Ewe 2's official immobilisation.
In the next battle, Jonathan Pearce remarked that Team Roaming Robots were good friends with Kan-Opener's team. This proved to be telling, as Ripper and Kan-Opener formed an immediate alliance to dispose of Raging Knightmare. Ripper started the early effort, tossing Raging Knightmare through the air, and towards the flame pit. Once Kan-Opener had brought Raging Knightmare over the pit, Ripper helped Kan-Opener free itself from its prey by bashing into the back of it repeatedly. The two robots then met in the final.
In the Annihilator final, Ripper started off as the more aggressive getting a series of flips in on Kan-Opener before losing a chain for one of its wheels, causing it to run in circles. It was attacked by Mr. Psycho, crushed by Kan-Opener and Refbot then counted Team Roaming Robots down and out, meaning Kan-Opener retained the title.
|RIPPER - RESULTS|
|The Seventh Wars - UK Championship|
|Heat P, Round 1||vs. Aggrobot, Reptirron The Second, Zorro||Qualified|
|Heat P, Round 2||vs. Daisy-Cutter||Won|
|Heat P, Final||vs. Firestorm 5 (2)||Lost|
|Round 1||vs. Ewe 2, Flippa, Kan-Opener,|
Raging Knightmare, Robochicken
|Round 2||vs. Ewe 2, Flippa, Kan-Opener, Raging Knightmare||Qualified|
|Round 3||vs. Ewe 2, Kan-Opener, Raging Knightmare||Qualified|
|Round 4||vs. Kan-Opener, Raging Knightmare||Qualified|
|Round 5||vs. Kan-Opener||Lost|
- Wins: 5
- Losses: 2
The second round of the annihilator, where Flippa forfeited, is omitted from the Wins tally.
|Main Series||Ripper Record|
|The First Wars||Did not enter|
|The Second Wars||Did not enter|
|The Third Wars||Did not enter|
|The Fourth Wars||Failed to qualify with Banana-R Armour|
|The Fifth Wars|| Failed to qualify as R.I.P.P.E.R.|
Entered with T-Bone
|The Sixth Wars||Failed to qualify as Ripper 2|
|The Seventh Wars|| Heat Final|
Featherweight Championship with Rip
|Robot Wars Extreme||Appearances|
|Series 1||Did not enter|
|Series 2||Entered with Neoteric|
Robot Wars Live EventsEdit
The third model of Ripper to be created since Robot Wars: The Seventh Wars competed in the first live event of Robot Wars since John Findlay acquired the license, at Barnsley in February 2013. Ripper reached the final battle of the competition, and finished fourth overall. It also reached the final of the Robot Wars Championship 2013 event held at Portsmouth where it reached the final losing to Eruption.
In mid-2013, John Findlay sold the current version of Ripper in order to build a new, fourth edition of Ripper for live events. The new Ripper debuted at the Robot Wars live event in Guildford, in June 2013, containing many components from Iron-Awe 6. Meanwhile, the buyers of Ripper's third edition, team. Ablaze, repainted Ripper with a striped pattern, renaming the robot Dystopia, which debuted at the same event and still competes alongside Ripper to this day, although nowadays little of the original Ripper remains, with a second separate model of Dystopia also existing.
Ripper was seeded 6th for the Robot Wars UK Championships 2013 held at Newport where it reached the semi-finals beating Tanto & Iron-Awe 7 in the heats before losing to Behemoth in the semi-finals and finished fourth. It was also the top seed for the Winter Tour 2013 held at the end of the year, here it did really well winning its primary heat against Meggamouse & Maelstrom. In the finals at Gloucester, it won its quarter-final battle by pinning Eruption against the wall and immobilised Saint in the semi-finals. It dominated the grand-final flipping Manta all over the arena until Manta flipped Ripper into the pit and prevented it from escaping in its attempts.
Ripper also participated in the Robot Wars World Championships 2015 held at Colchester and fought Gravity, Gripper and Toxic 2, but it fell in this stage due to it being immobilised after self-righting up into the arena wires, where it got caught and dangled comically. It also participated in a separate Annihilator contest at the same event where it did well, flipping Luzifer into the pit in the second round and getting lots of good attacks on the others. In the next round, it did well again, managing to escape the pit, but was immediately pushed back in again and eliminated, placing 4th.
Ripper made an explosive 2016 debut, going undefeated and flipping five robots out of the arena in the first Manchester show, two of those flips being head-to-head victories over Eruption, the first battle of which was concluded in mere seconds. Although Eruption would eventually win the Manchester leg of the tour, Ripper would place first at the next two events. Ripper also won the final Robot Wars live event in Maidstone, defeating Dystopia in the final.
Outside Robot WarsEdit
At live eventsEdit
The version of Ripper that appeared in Series 7 retired after five continued years of combat, as its chassis had been bent out of shape by Terrorhurtz. In its place an 'evolved' version called Ripper Evo replaced it to fight in live events, winning the 2008 Winter Tour (a separate competition from the UK Championship by that time) and reaching the semi-finals of the UK championships in 2008 & 2009. By the end of 2010, Ripper Evo was scrapped, and a new version was built. The 'Evo' was dropped from its name and returned to being called 'Ripper' (as it was annoying John Findlay), coming second in the 2010 UK Championships, and also winning the 2011 UK Championship event at the O2 arena.
In 2016, Ripper won The World of the Robots event, hosted in Dublin, where it defeated Beast in the final, even defeating another of John Findlay's robots, Halo, in an earlier round. At the 2017 Mechatrons event in Dublin, Ripper defended its title, defeating King B Remix in the semi-final, and Iron-Awe 7 in the final.
In September 2011, Ripper appeared alongside Thor in the BBC One gameshow Epic Win, in which the two robots were given the challenge of smashing two of four specific items within a caravan and then breaking their way out. The two robots succeeded in demolishing all four items, but got themselves stuck whilst trying to break out. Unable to move, the team forfeited the challenge and as a result, lost the round.
Also in September, Ripper and Thor appeared on Richard Bacon's Beer and Pizza Club where Ripper tore up the floor.
In March 2012, Ripper appeared on the BBC Two programme Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is where John Findlay allowed antiques expert Paul Hayes to operate Ripper when John bought eight toy robots for £75.
In October 2014, Ripper appeared, along with Beast, on Pawn Stars UK.
In October 2015, Ripper appeared, amongst other robots including The Steel Avenger and Bulldog Breed, on Storage Hunters UK. Several robots were "sold" to the highest bidder in an auction, for the price of £1400, with the intention of selling them on again for a "large profit". The bidder drove Ripper at the end of the episode, using it to flip an inactive Beast.
- Like Mighty Mouse, the televised version of Ripper was retired due to damage inflicted by Terrorhurtz.
- Although the 2011 version of Ripper has won both won the Winter Tour and the UK Championship, it still does not count as a two-time Champion.
- Two of Ripper's battles placed it in the top five quickest immobilisations (its immobilisations of Daisy-Cutter in its heat, and of Robochicken in the Annihilator).