Robot Wars: Big Shunt
Robot Wars: Big Matilda
From robot kitty-cats to mechanical villains. Words: Louisa Pearson
ack in the (ills. sci-ti visions of the future might
have left you feeling sttre that by the year 2()()()
we‘d all be the proud owners of robots. Robots to take care of the cooking. the cleaning. or just to keep us company. 'l‘hings haven‘t quite worked otit like that. btit across the land. mechanical friends are being btiilt. bought. cared for and set against each other. As Ruhr)! llilI‘S comes to the Sli(‘(‘. we decided to lind some robots that could fill a void in your life.
l’irst-up. vintage. These collectors items really don't impress on the skills side. btit just look at them. How could any fan of retro say no to robots with names like Ralph and Marvin'.’ Mostly wind-up or battery operated. you‘d best treat them with loving care rather than send them into battle. From U). annult’irst'lz. rank. ()2() 7737 0/99.
lf ‘man‘s best friend' conjures tip images of endless walks. hair on the furniture and relentless barking. then take the easy option: a cyber pet. Whether it‘s a pooch. parrot or cat you‘re after. these mechanical friends are at the affordable end of the market. Again the stunts are more limited. btit after a long lonely day at work. at least you’ll have someone at home to listen. l-‘mm [8.99, H'H‘H'.(ll'j"(’.\'.('(Lllk or stores nationwide.
Sony"s .-\lB() does theoretically fit into the ‘cyber pets” arena btit it‘s a very distant relative. There have been tales from the l'SA involving besotted owners believing their AIBO truly to be alive. And it's not as far-fetched as you might think. With artificial intelligence. this puppy matures from infancy to adulthood and develops a personality depending on how you treat it: ‘AIBO will show happiness when his needs are met: however. if ignored. AlBO can show sadness or even anger. He is a true companionl' With voice recognition. six emotional states and twenty
How could any fan of retro say no to robots with names like Ralph and Marvin?
motorised joints. this is the executive's choice. [1059, lt‘lt‘lt‘.(Ith-(‘ll/U/M’.(‘UHL
It’s hard to imagine anyone who doesn‘t have fond memories of LEGO; be it the train set. the space range or those swashbuckling pirates. But get with the programme people. this is the 21st century and nowadays the kids are mad for l.li(i() Mindstorms. 'l‘he Robotics Invention System (£169.99) lets you build robots that move and act. from a light-sensitive intruder alarm to a robotic rover that follows a trail. Slur llil)‘.\' fans will love the Dark Side Developer Kit (£79.99) which uses a microcomputer to make your robots move and react to light. Vision Command (£79.99) is one for the superspies: these creations will react to what they see. with a vision sensor to use as you wish. Making Duplo seem like a distant memory. ii'iru'.logo/nfur/storms.com. prices ('(H'I'(’('f (1! time algal/m to press.
And let us not forget the official Ro/ml li'urs merchandising. If you dream of owning your very own Shunt or Sir Killalot. the dream can now become reality. These replica robots include limited edition deluxe radio controlled models. while the standard replicas have all the features you‘d expect: Matilda comes with interchangeable chainsaw and circular saw. Go forth and destroy! From £12.99, lt'ii'li'.I'()/)()Ill'(ll'.\'.('().ll/(.
One of you lucky readers can win your very own Robot Wars replica Matilda - simply send your name and address to Robot Wars Comp, Shopping, The List, 14 High Street, Edinburgh EH1 1TE by Monday 23 July, completing this sentence in ten words or less: ‘The only good robot is a . . .’
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5—19 JJ. 220“ THE LIST 105