Video: Gladiator robots get in the ring

Years ago, I used to watch Robot Wars with my son, and enjoyed seeing the ‘bots fight it out with saw blades and hammers.

So it was pretty sweet indeed to come across a video of the Japanese Robo-One Championship, an annual contest where smallish humanoid robots get in the ring.

These bots aren’t made to be toys; they’re designed to battle in a competition with malicious intent. Winning a fight nets the winner a cool $12,000.

This year’s Robo-One Light battle was held on March 24 in Japan, and the entry fee was ¥1000. The big show, the standard Robo-One contest held a qualifying event on the same day, which was apparently a robot foot race, with the main event on Sunday, March 25.

The preliminary round had the robots competing in a foot race for the best time, with 48 robots making  it to the final event. Each robot had to weigh less than 3 kg, but you really should watch the video to see the robots in action. The ‘bots skip and jump, and they bend and squat trying to flip each other over to the point where they often can’t right themselves in time to beat the countdown.