- Motto: ""These are random thoughts, and I am a random person.""
- Weapon: High-Voltage Electric Cannon
. . . Imagine a circular ring topped by a dome. You can’t see the ring or the dome; they are an invisible shield that encases the battle ground floor like a snow globe. What you can see are the faces, the millions of faces from every vantage point around the arena. These are the faces of robots, stacked together in odd combinations to maximize the number of spectators. From the vantage point of the battle ground, all you can discern of these robots is their head since each body lies out of view. For organic life forms, such accommodations would be cruel. For these robots, it is not preferred, but it is acceptable.
If a transformer can feel claustrophobic, then the battle field is not the place for them. While the area leaves ample space for the fight to convene, one cannot help but feel the tightness in the enclosure. The glowing eyes from the faces all around do not help either. The only break from those eyes is the floor of the arena, and the passage that leads to the staging area from where the combatants emerge.
Each battle is to the death, or in transformer terms, when the other combatant is rendered inoperable. At such a point, the combatants are transported down that lone passage, repaired, and then sent back to do it all over again until a winner is eventually declared.
Two transformers fight at a time, battling until the first is made inoperable three times. Then the victor advances, and the defeated are shrouded in shame. Only one transformer may win the title of Grand Champion. Only one may claim to be the greatest of them all . . . .
A year ago, I gathered the stats for all G1 transformers and then did an analysis of each group. That work was posted in this forum. At that time I also wanted to use that data to create a battle simulator in Excel. I put a lot of effort into the project, but was never able to create a working model. The simulator would either be way too random, or way too predictable. The balance between the two was elusive, and eventually I gave up.
Now we are a year later and I decided to give it another try. It took me a few iterations, but I came up with the right “a-ha”s to make it work. The final project will eventually be posted on my website, but in the meantime I created a tournament structure to showcase the simulator’s abilities. Having run through that entire simulation, I will now endeavor to write-up the results and share it with you. This will happen in 5 additional posts. The first four posts will highlight the results of the simulations for the Autobot and Decepticon brackets of 1984, 1985, 1986, and 1987 respectively. The final post will be for the Tournament of Champions, those that advance from the earlier brackets.
Just a few housekeeping notes before we begin. I picked these particular years as they are what I consider to be the classic era of the original transformers. It’s a somewhat arbitrary cut-off, I know, but it was more meaningful for me this way. For each year I created two brackets of up to 32 Transformers -- one for the Autobots, and one for the Decepticons. Some brackets did not fill up all 32 slots, and that’s okay, some robots got byes as a result. By structuring the tournament this way, only 1 robot got left out (sorry Hubcap, but it’s better this way). Each match-up is a best-out-of-5 affair. Each match is determined solely on the Transformers’ stats as presented on the back of the boxes, coupled with a random factor. The best transformers will usually win, but not always, and there will be upsets.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. I hope you enjoy these write-ups and I will strive to make them entertaining. Ultimately, through this process, we will identify the greatest Transformer of all!