U.S. robot company MegaBots issued a challenge to Japanese electronics company Suidobashi Heavy Industries to a giant robot duel sometime in 2016. The Japanese company has accepted the challenge.
In a YouTube video issued last week with patriotic music, MegaBots challenged their Japanese rivals to a giant robot duel. According to Michael Shulman of CTV News, the challenge was issued by MegaBots co-founders Matt Oehrlein and Gui Cavalcant, who were both draped in American flags and aviator sunglasses reminiscent of "Top Gun."
"We have a giant robot, you have a giant robot - you know what needs to happen," Oehrlein said in the clip. "We challenge you to a duel."
Both men elaborated on the "Mark II," which weighs 12,000 pounds and can fire three-pound paint cannon balls at speeds over 100 miles per hour. It can seat two pilots.
"Because we're American, we've added really big guns," Cavalcant said with dramatic flair.
Cavalcant called out the robots produced by Suidobashi Heavy Industries, which were called "Kuratas."
"[Kurata is] a 9,000 pound single-seer giant fighting robot with twin Gatling guns, a hyper-targeting system, and a full heads-up display," Cavalcant said.
Suidobashi issued its response in a YouTube video accepting the challenge. According to Shulman, Suidobashi CEO Kogoro Kurata argued that "giant robots are Japanese culture"; he made the statements with a Japanese flag wrapped around his shoulders complete with rock music in the background.
"It came out of nowhere," Kurata said in Japanese. "I'll give them that. But my reaction? Come on guys, make it cooler."
Kurata then engaged in trash-talking his American rivals.
"Just building something huge and sticking guns on it, it's super American," Kurata quipped. "We can't let another country win this."
Kurata suggested to MegaBots that they should include melee combat as part of the fight.
"If we're going to win this, I want to punch them to scrap and knock them down to do it," Kurata said.
Suidobashi's video told MegaBots to organize the duel and the company will be there to battle it out.
"This duel stands to go down in history as the world's first giant robot battle," Suidobashi wrote on YouTube. "Let's make sure it's something for the historians to write about."
Oehrlein acknowledged that "both of our robots will need modifications to become combat-ready."
"Prepare yourselves and name the battlefield," Oherlein said. "In one year, we fight."
Megabots wrote in its YouTube video description that "we have a duty to the science fiction lovers of this world to fight them to the death."
According to Melia Robinson of Business Insider, the co-founders of MegaBots, which also included Andrew Stroup, hoped to usher in the next generation of major sports leagues in the United States known as Robot SmackDowns.
"The idea for the league grew out of their lifelong obsession with robotics and video games," Robinson wrote. "They grew up with one foot in reality and the other in the futuristic war zones of MechWarrior and StarCraft."