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May 10, 2015

Forget Robot Wars, Hebocon will amaze you with the quality and crappiness of its robots made entirely from household rubbish.

Remember Robot Wars with Jeremy Clarkson as a host? A show dedicated to the talented engineers out there, their creative, innovative and elegant solutions they’ve come up with in order to create the ultimate robot killing machine. A machine, specially designed to defeat and sometimes even destroy the opponent during an intense and epic battle. Robots’ weapon were made from cold steel and sharp blades, not from recycled plastic bottles


“Razer"was once part of Robot Wars

The majority of battles in Robot Wars were highly intensive and interesting. It was a show where modern technology met the entertainment of a real boxing match, where you would bet on some of the robots. I know I did.
Watching the show would make you shout something like “TAKE HIM DOWN WITH THE ELECTRIC SAW”.
Good old times…

Forget Robot Wars

Hebocon is here and it has absolutely nothing in common with its ancestor. Nothing. Japan’s TV industry has already proved itself as a mastermind when it comes to inventing weird shows and contests, so we should have expected this. I wonder how far would they go?

What Hebocon really is?

It is a sumo-wrestling contest targeted to those who don’t have the technical skills and knowledge to create a real robot. In 2014, thirty one(!) robots participated in the contest. All cold blooded and ready for a heated battle, well, not really. Robots are usually made from discarded household materials or recycled ones. As seen on the video, there were quite interesting participants (yes, the mighty Dildo-bot).

So, if, for some reason, you decide to participate you need to:

  • Have no knowledge in how to build a robot and not to have a desire to learn how to.
  • To make some rubbish.
  • To build a crappy robot using the accumulated household rubbish.
  • Ask yourself do you really want to participate in such contest.

I can probably name 10 more useful ways of using those recycled materials, but none of them will be ever as entertaining and embarrassing at the same time as a fight between junk robots on Hebocon’s ring.

To ensure a level of equality between the participants, organizers made a “high tech penalty” rule. A rule designed to punish entrants who build their robots patiently, competently and try to implement modern technology features in them. This automatically ensures a certain level of crappiness.

Since the rules are quite strict and the robots crappy, making a good strategy before the game is a difficult and maybe an impossible task. Some of the battles ended before they even started. Yet, many of the fights took longer than expected. Not because the opponents were equal on the ring, but because they both possessed an equal level of crappiness.

What makes this tournament unique?

Nothing, actually. I can’t remember any other show or contest in which the winner feels so ashamed of his accomplishment and of his desire to win such a tournament. If you ever decide to try your chance in Hebocon, be extremely careful because you might win it. You might win using your rubbish and feel embarrassed afterwards.

Years ago, I had a nightmare from watching some scary robots having a fight on Robot Wars. Now, I had to pause the video in the middle and recollect my body parts from all the laughing.