Auckland family triumphs in world robot fighting championship

An Auckland family has emerged victorious after some deadly battles at the world robot fighting championships in China on the weekend, winning the 110kg competition.

The fights took place in a cage and were live-streamed around the world for thousands of bloodthirsty fans.

"We put it into an arena - a bulletproof arena with other opponents - and they've just got to beat each other up, until one of them dies!" said team leader Jack Barker.

With the help of three engineers, the Barkers constructed their death bot in a small garage workshop in Auckland's Blockhouse Bay.

The end result was a battle robot named "Death Toll". Weighing in at 110kg, it was designed to annihilate its enemies - and it did just that.

"Our 15kg lost in the first round, but the new 110kg managed to win the competition in straight knockouts!" Jack Barker told Newshub.

"We are very happy with the result! To beat out some of the best teams in the world with a brand new robot means so much to us."

Each robot is unique and weapon systems are controlled remotely, leading to exciting battles.

"The other robots had horizontal spinning weapons, spinning drums, lifting arms and high pressure pneumatic flippers," Mr Barker told Newshub.

Death Toll's impressive set-up uses aircraft aluminium and lithium batteries to power the deadly machine. Its spinning weapon runs at 6000 RPM and while it might not be flashy, it does the business.

"The main thing about the spinner is it lets you put as much energy into one mechanism as you can, unlike, say a swinging axe, where you get to spin it once and that's all the power you'll get," said mechatronics engineer Shane De Rijk.

Footage shows the vicious metal beast furiously attacking its enemy, tearing off chunks and flipping its opponent onto its back.

In another fight to the death, the robot outmanoeuvres challenger Echo Two and brutally throws it out of the ring.

"We thought the robots performed really well. Both had teething issues because they are new robots, but we managed to work around them," Mr Barker says.

"We got really unlucky with our 15kg robot losing in the first fight due to a weapon failure, and the 110kg robot performed flawlessly once we had it up and running."

Mr Barker says he's learned from the experience, and the team will be back next year to defend their 110kg title and hopefully take the 15kg title too.

"We have learnt a lot about making our electrical systems more reliable. Also, it is very important to take control of a match early and keep attacking when they are startled," he told Newshub.

"Just a big thanks to the organizers, FMB for organizing travel logistics and the tournament. As well as our sponsors Steelmasters and Renold."