Robot Combat League will have 12 teams. Each consists of a fighter (dubbed a “robo-jockey”) and a robotics engineer (a “robo-tech”). The fighters and techs are from various backgrounds, such as a race car driver, an Olympic athlete, a National Guard helicopter pilot. One of the robo-jocks, for example, is MMA fighter Amanda Lucas (Star Wars visionary George Lucas’ daughter). Each team is paired with its own unique robot, all designed by Setrakian, that will have unique strengths and vulnerabilities. And, of course, the robots will have a colorful names, such as “Steampunk” and “Sgt. Smash.” (If there’s a second season, I hope Lucas gets to control a giant gold robot named C-3POW).
Fights consist of three rounds, with the winning team advancing to the next competition. The winning team claims a $100,000 prize. Jericho will set up each fight and provide play-by-play commentary. “They are complete boxing matches,” Stern says. “If a robot is disabled, the team has 20 minutes to get it functional again and back in the ring.”
The project might eventually have some competition. Discovery Channel earlier this year announced it’s developing a next-generation robot combat show called Robogeddon, produced by heavy hitters James Cameron and Mark Burnett. Robot Combat League is ready to go, however, having just wrapped production on its first season last week.
Now look at this next bot, photo below. Cylon Ver. 1.0? Skynet, the beta test? Either way, I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords.