Tombstone is a heavyweight robot built by Hardcore Robotics which competed in the 2009 BattleBots Professional Championship and all seasons of BattleBots reboot. It is a two-wheeled box-shaped robot armed with a large horizontally-spinning bar, in which there are about 65-75 lbs. Its name was earlier used by a superheavyweight built by the same team which competed between 2004 and 2005. The name comes from computer networking's term "tombstoning" meaning to kill it and have it stay dead. The current Tombstone is basically a near-copy of the team's flagship heavyweight Last Rites which competes on RoboGames. This was because of the name exclusivity contract between BattleBots and the competing robots which would render the team's leader Ray Billings unable to use the name "Last Rites" in RoboGames anymore. Last Rites' (and with it also Tombstone's) design was allegedly inspired by M.O.E.

Tombstone is widely renowned for the amount of destruction dealt to opposition by its now-trademark blade, making it a constant fan favorite. It has several different kinds of the blade to use depending on the opponent it faces. There are at least three different kinds of the blade, which are coloured differently and are varying in weight. Tombstone constantly performed solidly in competition. It took fourth place on debut at the 2009 BattleBots Professional Championship, then finished runner-up in Season 1 of BattleBots reboot, won Season 2, reached Round of 16 in Season 3 and the semi-finals in Season 4.

Robot History

2009 Championship


In 2009

Tombstone's first match was against Shrike. Tombstone won the match and advanced to the next round, where it faced Vault. Tombstone won the match by KO. and advanced to the next round, where it faced VD6.0.

VD6.0 won the match by a devastating KO. With its fly wheel, Tombstone couldn't get close and Tombstone was now in the loser's bracket, where it faced Megabyte. Tombstone won the match and advanced to the next round, where it faced Root Canal. Root Canal won the match and Tombstone was eliminated from the tournament.

ABC Season 1

Tombstone 2015

In Season 1

Tombstone was scheduled to fight beta first and had even had a cushion added to the front of it, but beta had technical issues and was forced to to forfeit. Tombstone won by default and went up against beta's replacement Counter Revolution in the round of 24.

Both machines spun their weapons up and Counter Revolution approached Tombstone. Tombstone then struck the front of Counter Revolution, severely damaging the body and immobilizing it. Tombstone struck Counter Revolution several more times, causing large amounts of damage before landing one last hit that launched Counter Revolution through the air and into the wall. Tombstone won the match by devastating KO in 37 seconds and advanced to the round of 16 with its No.1 seeding, where it faced the No.16 seed Radioactive.

At the start of the match, Radioactive mostly spun on the spot, while Tombstone taunted it by driving around without using its weapon. As soon as Tombstone started to use its weapon on Radioactive, major damage was sustained and Radioactive was counted out. Tombstone won by a quick and devastating KO at 1:09 and advanced to the quarterfinals, where it faced the No.9 seed Witch Doctor.

For this fight, Tombstone used a new black after using Last Rites' for the first two fights. Witch Doctor put up a very good show in the opening moments, overpowering Tombstone and flinging it into the air several times, also slamming it into the arena wall. Witch Doctor maintained its lead until Tombstone was able to disable Witch Doctor's disc. With no weapon, Tombstone was able to charge into Witch Doctor, and hit it so hard, Witch Doctor was overturned. Likewise, Tombstone was flung across the BattleBox, breaking its weapon in half in the process. Despite Tombstone being left with no offense, Witch Doctor was unable to right itself and it was being counted out. Tombstone won by KO at 1:01 and advanced to the semifinals, where it faced the No.4 seed Bronco.

In the beginning of the match, Bronco moved to the corner of the BattleBox and Tombstone started spinning its blade. Both robots slowly moved toward each other and Bronco flips Tombstone onto its back. Tombstone hits the front of Bronco and Bronco misses a flip. Bronco tried to get underneath the left side of the flipped Tombstone, but it misses and takes a hit from Tombstone's spinning blade. This hit damaged the left side of Bronco and it was now moving in circles. Tombstone started hitting the rear of Bronco and moves to the corner of the BattleBox. Tombstone hits the right side panel of Bronco and tears it off. After this, the severely damaged Bronco managed to get a small flip on the front of Tombstone. Bronco got another flip on Tombstone, but Bronco flipped itself onto its back from the impact. After seven attempts, Bronco managed to flip itself back onto its feet and takes a hit from Tombstone's spinning blade. This hit ripped the front right wheel off of Bronco and tossed it out of the BattleBox. Tombstone went straight at the immobile Bronco and the hit nearly flipped Bronco onto its back. Bronco kept using its flipping in order to get moving again, but it wasn't successful and Bronco flipped itself onto its back. As Bronco was being counted out, Tombstone started spinning its blade and Bronco flipped itself back onto its feet. When the count reached 0, Tombstone gave Bronco one more hit from its spinning blade and sent Bronco flying to the corner of the BattleBox. This hit also sent Tombstone flying across the BattleBox and its batteries came out from the impact. Tombstone won the match by KO at 2:26 and advanced to the finals, where it faced the No.3 seed Bite Force.

Bite Force had the early advantage, lifting Tombstone and Tombstone's batteries started smoking. However, Bite Force also had issues with Tombstone's blade and the driving of Ray Billings and started moving oddly. Time ran out and the battle went to the judges, who ruled in favor of Bite Force. Tombstone got the award of most destructive robot as it destroyed Counter Revolution, Radioactive, Witch Doctor and Bronco.

ABC Season 2

Tombstone's first match in Season 2 was against Black Ice. Black Ice was able to deflect a couple of minor blows from Tombstone's spinning blade, but Tombstone managed to get one good pop into Black Ice and this hit did something to the electronics of Black Ice which simultaneously killed the left drive motor and stuck the right motor into a state of permanent forward. Black Ice was barely moving around the BattleBox and Tombstone pushed Black Ice into one of the corners of the BattleBox for an easy KO at 1:01. This win put Tombstone to the round of 32 with its No.1 seeding, where it faced the No.32 seed Escape Velocity.

Both robots circled each other for several seconds before Tombstone's blade made contact with one of the aluminum panels on Escape Velocity, tearing it off. Tombstone continued attacking and eventually Escape Velocity stopped moving as the impact had destroyed both the master power switch and the weapon switch, and tore a 2" gash in the side. Escape Velocity was counted out and Tombstone won by KO at 45 seconds. This win put Tombstone to the round of 16.


Series Round Opponent(s) Results
2009 BattleBots Pro Championships 1 Shrike Won
2 Vault Won
3 VD6.0 Lost

Bracket 1

Megabyte Won

Bracket 2

Root Canal Lost
ABC BattleBots 2015 Round of 24 Counter Revolution

(in place of Beta)

Round of 16 Radioactive Won
Quarter Final Witch Doctor Won
Semi-Final Bronco Won
Final Bite Force Lost
ABC BattleBots 2016 Qualifier Black Ice Won
Round of 32 Escape Velocity Won
Round of 16 Brutus Won
Quarter Final Beta Won
Semi-Final Yeti Won
Final Bombshell Won


  • Wins: 13
  • Losses: 3
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