A mission for a new weapon

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Crabbo007
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2022 11:41 pm

A mission for a new weapon

Post by Crabbo007 »

My name: Crabbo007. My mission: To create a new, simple, combat-viable weapon. There are 3 common weapon types, lifters/flippers, spinners, and pushers. There are, of course, many other weapon types. Saws, drills, axes, just to name few. But there are a few issues with these weapons. They have at least one of the following undesirable traits: 1. Too heavy for most ants, the ‘bot must be a walker or trade off other aspects in order to use the weapon. 2. The weapon is complicated to build. 3. The weapon is ineffective at this scale. I hope to design a new weapon which has none of these traits. I’ve decided to make a list of various weapons and rate their various traits so that I may take the good aspects of each into account for my weapon.

Spinner: 12
Ease of building: 3
Effectiveness:5
Fun: 4

Flipper: 9
Ease of building: 2
Effectiveness: 4
Fun: 4
Other: Flippers are some of my favorites, but it can be hard to make a flipper that’s actually flips. Though once you do, it’s super fun to watch your opponent fly around the arena and (hopefully) into the pit.

Hammer/Axe: 8
Ease of building: 2
Effectiveness: 1
Fun: 5


Grabber: 8.5
Ease of building: 3.5
Effectiveness: 2
Fun: 3

Lifter: 10
Ease of building: 3.5
Effectiveness: 3
Fun: 3.5
Other: Lifters are cool, but once you start getting linkages involved they can become slightly difficult to build. Much easier than a flipper, but still a slight challenge. As for fun, watching someone lift up their opponent is cool but not nearly as cool as watching the opponent fly about the arena from a good hit from a spinner or a good flip from a flipper.

Pusher: 10
Ease of building: 5
Effectiveness: 4
Fun: 1
Other: Pushers are among the best weapons in combat robotics. Their simplicity makes them a great first weapon type, and their combat effectiveness is undeniable. As pointed out by MySolderIsOlder, the effectiveness of pushers comes down to the effectiveness of the driver.

Saw: ???
Ease of building: 1
Effectiveness: ?
Fun: 5
Other: I am unable to properly rate the effectiveness of saws due to me never seeing an ant fight with one. I do know, however, from extensively reading this forum that saws are NOT easy to build. That, plus their weight, brings the saw down in rank in my humble opinion.

Unconventional weapon:
Ease of building: TBD
Effectiveness: TBD
Fun: 5!
Other: Building something no one’s ever seen before is a super interesting not just for the builder but for the audience watching the battle too. Even your opponent may be intrigued by your design! Take Shakey’s Ghost Writer for instance. For those who haven’t seen it, it’s a bot with a sharpie arm that draws all over its opponents in the arena. Does it do as much damage as a spinner? No. But is it hysterical? Absolutely! Of course, the main reason we all do this is fun. So make something fun! Don’t feel like you have to make a spinner so you can win, make something cool and interesting so you can enjoy it!

Please, feel free to suggest changes to this list. It is not definitive whatsoever. I want this list to be as accurate as possible to aid me in my weapon design endeavors, and also to help people who are having trouble picking a weapon for their ‘bots, so, again, PLEASE suggest any changes you think will help this list to be more accurate.

Edit 1: Adding Fun as a category, adding Unconventional Weapon. Changed flipper Effectiveness rating, I completely forgot pits existed:p Reduced pusher effectiveness (thanks MarkR and MySolderIsOlder for the suggestions)
Last edited by Crabbo007 on Wed Jan 18, 2023 6:39 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Crabbo007
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2022 11:41 pm

Re: A mission for a new weapon

Post by Crabbo007 »

First post by the way! Hello, everyone!
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MarkR
Posts: 375
Joined: Mon Dec 18, 2017 12:46 pm
Location: Reading Hackspace
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Re: A mission for a new weapon

Post by MarkR »

Don't forget to include "fun" as a category!

Personlly I like the axe-bots, not because they're effective (no!) but because they are entertaining.

Also I prefer to see more unconventional entries despite (or maybe because!) them being less effective.

I've never entered a pusher in a tournament. They just don't get me excited.
Robots: Betsie - RaspberryPi controlled flipper bot with gyro stablisation - too clever for her own good?
Stacie - tidy flipper; 4wd driven by hair bands
MySolderIsOlder
Posts: 189
Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2018 1:22 pm
Location: Kent

Re: A mission for a new weapon

Post by MySolderIsOlder »

Arguably, 'Pushers' are the category where success in competitions is most closely correlated to the skill of the driver. Historically, some of the most successful pushers in terms of AWS victories just happened to be operated by some of the best drivers.

Spinners increase the chances of a lucky win, since it often comes down to who ricochets out first. Personally, I'm an appalling driver - which is why I concentrate on making the most outrageous spinners I can devise. Like Mark though, I think fun is a very important factor. In that sense, I'd say that although flails are possibly the least successful category of ants ever (since at the last resort, most hammer-bots are just pushers with a flamboyant sri-mech)- but everyone should try building a flail at least once because they always raise a smile.
Stuart (Tony's dad)
Crabbo007
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Dec 23, 2022 11:41 pm

Re: A mission for a new weapon

Post by Crabbo007 »

I think fun as a category is a great idea! I didn’t even think of that. I will most definitely be adding it later. I also do enjoy seeing unconventional ‘bots and weaponry. Personally, I love grabbers. They’re some of my favorite weapons despite them not being super great in combat, in fact I’m building one right now! I think I’ll add “Unconventional Weapon” to the list.
Tufty
Posts: 97
Joined: Wed Jan 29, 2020 9:39 pm
Location: North Wales

Re: A mission for a new weapon

Post by Tufty »

MarkR wrote: Wed Jan 18, 2023 3:52 pm Don't forget to include "fun" as a category!

Personlly I like the axe-bots, not because they're effective (no!) but because they are entertaining.

Also I prefer to see more unconventional entries despite (or maybe because!) them being less effective.

I've never entered a pusher in a tournament. They just don't get me excited.
Axes are hilarious, they tend to be quite frantic mechanisms at ant scale and they really look like their doing something, only for the realisation 2 minutes later that there's just a scratch somewhere on the side. But they are fun to watch and you never know when a lucky hit will actually do some damage.

I have to admit guilt re pushers, but that's mostly for weight reasons because it turns out I'm a shockingly bad designer!
Current active ants: Scrooge McDerp | Ply-By-Wire (likely not to see competition) | Grinding Nemo | When Unicorns Go Rogue
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