Chase for the ICEcrown

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The Monsterworks
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Chase for the ICEcrown

Post by The Monsterworks » Mon Dec 17, 2018 1:09 pm

With the preliminary stage officially halfway through, we can now pause and take stock of the twelve days of Christmas competitors and where they stand. Since it's the end of the semester, so to speak, I figured it'd be a good time to hand out report cards!



ICEcrown Report Cards

Shellshock Team Vertigo

Record: 2-1

Buchholz: 2.0

Points differential: +1

Initial Seeding: (1)

Current Seeding: (5)

Grade: B

Synopsis: Despite falling four places in the rankings, Shellshock can hardly be blamed for a solid but so far unspectacular run, having faced the current number three and four seeds, with a close victory and close defeat to show for it. With a stat spread optimized for combat against other spinners, it just hasn't gotten to face very many yet, being able to showcase its destructive abilities only in its most recent fight against Labrys. Looking forward, it'll have a golden opportunity to reclaim its rightful position with a week four tussle against the usurper and lone undefeated bot remaining: its fellow shell spinner Death's Head Sarsaparilla.

Death's Head Sarsaparilla The Monsterworks

Record: 3-0

Buchholz: 1.0

Points Differential: +45

Initial Seeding: (2)

Current Seeding: (1)

Grade: A

Synopsis: Coming into the tournament, Death's Head Sarsaparilla (or DHS, for short) was reckoned to be a contender, but few likely expected it to be the lone remaining bot with no losses on its record. Ending all three of its fights with decisive knockouts, including one against the highly rated Detroit Iron, it has performed well above expectations. If there's any knock on DHS' record, it's the relatively soft strength of opposition aside from the marquee win mentioned above. Next up is a huge match against the initial number one seed, Shellshock, that should serve to either demonstrate DHS' limitations or cement its place at the top of the table.

Detroit Iron Tartarus Robotics Group

Record: 2-1

Buchholz: 2.0

Points Differential: +1

Initial Seeding: (3)

Current Seeding: (2)

Grade: B+

Synopsis: Detroit Iron was always going to do fairly well. As a dedicated brick and control bot in a field of spinners, it was purpose-built to take advantage of the field. By and large, it has succeeded in doing so, with a pair of wins over solid vertical spinners Maurdread and Screamroller (both each bot's only loss to date). Coming up short against number one seed Death's Head Sarsaparilla in a thrilling match thanks to some dodgy driving, Detroit Iron has nothing to be ashamed of. Next up is a tough but winnable match against the crusher Chernabog. As with almost every fight, Laz' worst enemy may be his own mercurial nature.

IMMA SCATMAN End of the Line LLC.

Record: 0-3

Buchholz: 1.0

Points Differential: -35

Initial Seeding: (4)

Current Seeding: (12)

Grade: F

Synopsis: There's one in every tournament: the high seed that falls utterly and rapidly from grace and flat onto its face. To be fair, not a lot of this can be attributed to the design or stats of the bot itself. We've only gotten to see it legitimately fight once, and that was in a somewhat competitive loss to an inspired performance by TBR and Taranis, already an awkward matchup for the dustpan bot. In its other two losses, SCATMAN failed to show up at all, forfeiting both due to mechanical woes and leaving an early favourite floundering in last position, with only the slimmest of hopes of advancing. Next week against The HMS Bucolic will decide its fate.

Hovercrap Team Design Flaw

Record: 2-1

Buchholz: 2.0

Points Differential: -15

Initial Seeding: (5)

Current Seeding: (8)

Grade: D

Synopsis: To call Hovercrap an utter failure, to say that it's living up to the second half of its moniker, would be a bit unfair. Expectations were always a bit too high for this, a type of bot that has historically underperformed. A crippling lack of control and knockback resistance have so far scuppered its chances at a winning record, but early losses to Maurdread and Screamroller aren't looking as bad as they once did, and at least the novel machine took care of business against jokebot The HMS Bucolic. This week is a gatekeeper sort of fight against Labrys, with the winner thrust back into contention and the loser relegated to the lower echelons.

Steelhead Team Trihunter

Record: 2-1

Buchholz: 2.0

Points Differential: +27

Initial Seeding: (6)

Current Seeding: (3)

Grade: B+

Synopsis: With all of the overperformers and underperformers, let's take a moment to appreciate a bot that has performed exactly as expected: Steelhead. After disposing of the game but outmatched HMS Bucolic, this sturdy flipper took care of the initial top seed Shellshock with a comprehensive performance topped off by an OOTA, exactly as it was designed to do. Coming into its next match as the favourite against slightly underpowered crusher Chernabog, Steelhead's lack of speed and mediocre wedge finally caught up to it. Despite the reveal of that chink in its armour, it'll hope to rebound against the lightly-regarded Taranis this week.

Chernabog Team Instant Regret

Record: 2-1

Buchholz: 2.0

Points Differential: +17

Initial Seeding: (7)

Current Seeding: (4)

Grade: B+

Synopsis: To say that Chernabog's performance has been a revelation would be a bit of an overstatement but, for a bot designed more for the fun of an engineering challenge than to win, it has been workmanlike and effective. After giving Shellshock everything that it could handle in what may have been its worst matchup designwise, the Team Instant Regret crusher had nothing to regret when obliterating The HMS Bucolic. Its crowning moment came with an upset of the highly regarded Steelhead, in which it leveraged a good wedge, solid drivetrain, and superior tactics to take the fight. It faces another favourite this week: Detroit Iron.

Taranis Team British Robotics

Record: 1-2

Buchholz: 2.0

Points Differential: -25

Initial Seeding: (8)

Current Seeding: (10)

Grade: C

Synopsis: Let's get this out of the way: Taranis hasn't been bad. It just probably hasn't been quite as good as TBR hoped it would be. While an opening round loss to top seed Death's Head Sarsaparilla is nothing to be ashamed of, some iffy strategic choices - namely, trying to flank a bot with a very wide and reachy weapon and similar drivetrain in the form of Screamroller - cost it a match which would've vaulted it into legitimate contention. Conversely, some particularly inspired driving won it a fight against highly favoured IMMA SCTAMAN. Whether it wins or loses this week against Steelhead depends on which version of TBR shows up.

Screamroller Aquatic Robotics

Record: 2-1

Buchholz: 1.0

Points Differential: +15

Initial Seeding: (9)

Current Seeding: (7)

Grade: A

Synopsis: Coming in as a woefully outdated-looking semi-jokebot, Screamroller was viewed as overseeded, if anything. Instead, it's been a quiet revelation. After pushing Detroit Iron to its very limit in a near-upset, this novel flail spinner has gone undefeated, posting wins against a pair of mid-tier spinners in the form of Hovercrap and Taranis. A combination of good driving, weapon reach, and a clever decision to opt out of the wedge war entirely has seen Screamroller become a dark horse against all expectations. Could a design from 1997 actually morph into a serious contender? We may find out this week against fellow vertical Maurdread.

Labrys Team Worst Swordsman

Record: 1-2

Buchholz: 2.0

Points Differential: -15

Initial Seeding: (10)

Current Seeding: (9)

Grade: B-

Synopsis: Sometimes, an upset win can actually hurt a bot's chances, and the ambitiously designed Labrys has so far been a great example of that. An opening victory against the fourth seeded IMMA SCATMAN, in which the End of the Line LLC machine failed to start, vaulted Labrys into the upper echelons of the bracket where its audacious strategies came up short against the overwhelming spinners Death's Head Sarsaparilla and Shellshock, the pre-tournament one and two seeds! Settling back down into mid-table matchups, it'll have a chance to begin rebuilding against the more reasonably matched and equally novel Hovercrap.

Maurdread Team Obscure

Record: 2-1

Buchholz: 1.0

Points Differential: +29

Initial Seeding: (11)

Current Seeding: (6)

Grade: A

Synopsis: Maurdread has been quietly excellent so far, having posted the second best points differential behind only the top seed, Death's Head Sarsaparilla. Having utterly disposed of both Hovercrap and IMMA SCATMAN (the latter due partially to mechanical issues), the only blemish on its record is a razor-thin loss to the second seed, Detroit Iron. Underestimated at the outset of the tournament for its odd shape, this Team Obscure machine is coming into its own, and Bastien may finally have a winner. This week's matchup against fellow upstart Screamroller is huge. The victor confirms its status as a genuine contender.

The HMS Bucolic Angry Goat Robotics

Record: 0-3

Buchholz: 2.0

Points Differential: -45

Initial Seeding: (12)

Current Seeding: (11)

Grade: C+

Synopsis: Had Gabe known that this tournament was Swiss format, he probably would've entered a different bot. That said, The HMS Bucolic has been a lot of fun. While it clearly wasn't meant to win, its combination of blazing speed, a unique weapon, and general gameness has made it every bit as entertaining as a jokebot can be, and subtly competitive as well. Surprisingly, it has managed to frustrate and score at least superficial damage to its opponents in every one of its fights before dying spectacularly, as any good gag entry should. With its next matchup against the 'might not even start' IMMA SCATMAN this week, it could even post a win!

That does it for my prognostications. How about the rest of you? How do you think your bot and others are doing? Which six will make the playoffs? Sound off below!

Mastodon... Extinction (HW)
Osiris... Armageddon! (MW)
Elrathia... ROBOTS (LW)
Magnolia Pico... Ruination 4 (MW)
RipTide... ROBOT2 (FW)
Black Diamond... Cherry Bomb Classic 3 (HW)


The Monsterworks: 163 - 47 (.776) ...Probably up to no good.
The Cherry Bomb Classic III: 21-4
Show
Carbonemys: 7-1 Semifinals
Black Diamond: 9-0 Champion!
I Dance Crabcore, Motherfucker!: 5-3 Quarterfinals

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