Robotix is a 1985 animated series based on the Milton Bradley toy of the same name. The original toy was of the construction type, similar to the Erector Set and K'Nex, that included motors, wheels, and pincers.
The series follows the conflict between the peaceful Protectons and the warmongering Terrakors on the alien world of Skalorr, and a group of humans who get caught up in the conflict. It was produced by Sunbow Productions and Marvel Productions, and was animated in Japan by Toei Animation, which also animated other cartoons featured on Super Sunday.
Unlike most animated shows, Robotix was not a 22-minute cartoon, but was rather a series of fifteen six-minute shorts that aired as part of the Super Sunday half-hour with other animated shows, including Jem and the Holograms, Inhumanoids and Bigfoot and the Muscle Machines. While Jem and Inhumanoids had enough success to be turned into full-fledged series, Robotix was cancelled after its debut season.
Marvel Comics also produced a single-issue comic book in February 1986, which roughly followed the storyline of the first three episodes of the series.
Robotix: The Movie
|Robotix: The Movie|
|Directed by||Wally Burr|
|Music by||Robert J. Walsh|
|Distributed by||Claster Television|
In 1987, the fifteen six-minute long shorts were compiled together and released on video as Robotix: The Movie, a 90-minute feature film. Directed by Wally Burr, it was re-released on DVD on 28 July 2003 for Region 2 in the UK and Ireland.
- Argus: Leader of the Protectons. Before his transfer into a Robotix body known as the R-2000. He was the chief-in-command of Protecton Capital, Zanadon, and had a romantic relationship with Narra. He is compassionate and brave, and tries to help the humans. He despises killing to the point that he'd rather hurt himself than allow anybody to use him to kill another being. He almost suffered a nervous breakdown upon discovering that his mind and life force were downloaded into a robot shell. He has a humanoid robot form with a head on a long neck and a curved blade for a right hand. Memorable transformations and features include a car-like form, a hand blade changing into a gun, laser cannons deploying from his chest, a head usable as a ramrod, and a compact mode with shrunken arms and legs. Pilot of choice: Exeter Galaxon
- Bront: The tough guy of the team. Before his transfer to the body called the R-1500. He maintained Zanadon's command center and initiated its battle mode. He's close friends with Jerrok, who often teased him in the past because of his meager size. Their trust was strained when Bront was wrongly accused of sabotaging Zanadon's reactor and almost attacked Kontor and Jerrok, but their partnership was soon reestablished. His Robotix form has a humanoid body from the waist up, and his four legs have wheels as feet. Memorable transformations and features include a car-like form with deployable grabber, an extreme extension of his torso to form a ladder, extendable legs for river crossing, a deployable twin laser cannon of his forehead, and hands combining into a drill-like form. Pilot of choice: Tauron
- Jerrok: A friend of Bront, he helped him activate Zanadon's battle mode. He used to tease Bront as he was twice as tall as him, but during the transfer he acquired the smallest Robotix unit. His robot form consists of a humanoid torso, with arms and head attached to a giant wheel having two smaller wheels on the sides. Having the fastest and most maneuverable body, he likes to play with his opponents while fighting them. Memorable transformations and features include hands with built-in laser cannons and an extreme extension of his arms. Pilot of choice: Spiro
- Narra: The only female character in the series. Before being transferred into a Robotix body by Compucore, the Protecton computer, she was Argus' assistant, and shared a romantic relationship with him. She is caring, and wants to help humans as she understands how fragile they are compared to their own robot forms. She is also very bright, being the first Protecton to see through Venturak's masquerade. Her Robotix unit is a small dome with a face, mounted on four powerful legs that are also usable as hands. Her body is significantly durable, and it can remain fully operational and mobile even when some of her legs are severely damaged or even removed. Memorable transformations and features include a hover-jet mode, an ability to hover and slide above ground, crane/grabbers deployable from her legs, and laser cannons deployable from her feet. Pilot of choice: Steff
- Boltar: The gentle beast of the Protectons. Boltar is kind and supportive to his allies, yet can be a serious threat to his enemies. On one occasion he was even able to take out four Terrakors, all on his own. He may be slightly mentally undeveloped, as he always speaks of himself in the third person and uses simple, short sentences (much like the Dinobots from Transformers). His Robotix body has a bulky, bear-like torso on six thin legs. It is the second Robotix unit created during the movie, and was assembled and animated by Zarru and Compucore during their stay in Zanadon, when they found an unfinished and part-lacking Robotix in one of the hangars. Apparently, the body Boltar uses was still under construction when Skallor's sun went supernova and was abandoned by its creators. Memorable transformations and features include a humanoid combat form, a helicopter mode, and multiple onboard weapon systems, including laser cannons and flamethrowers. Boltar didn't choose his pilot - during his first battle he was piloted by Zarru, but later Exeter assigns Flexor as his partner, without any objection from the Protecton himself.
- Kontor: Before the supernova cataclysm, Kontor was known as Zanadon's main architect, and the designer whom Argus found trustworthy. He had a very short appearance, as he was ambushed by Nemesis and Tyranix in the Capsule Chamber just after he was transferred into his robotic body, and was sent back into Compucore's essence bank to be replaced by Venturak. His Robotix form was built by Protectons from spare parts found in the Capsule Chamber, and resembles a bear/canine with shovel-like feet. He never had any pilot, nor a chance to use any of his body features.
- Nemesis: Ruthless ruler of the Terrakors, who tries to take over Skallor. In one of the flashbacks he is seen trying to attack Zanadon with his army, but fails, swearing death to deserters and vengeance to Argus. When it was discovered that the sun will go nova he opted for manning the Terror Star and abandoning the dying planet, and even after transferring into his Robotix body he is willing to execute the plan. He has an obsession with obtaining the Compucore and using it to control Terror Star, which he admires and treats with great care (as seen when Goon fails in salvaging the ship from a lake, being almost torn apart by a furious Nemesis). Unlike Argus, Nemesis sees his new body as a better chance to flee from the planet and conquer space, which helps him use his Robotix form more efficiently. He trusts only Tyrannix, even if he's not always willing to show it - or even throws him away. His robot form was of a blue humanoid with a lizard-like head. Memorable transformations and features included a left hand capable of extreme extension and shifting into a laser gun, super-sharp beam whips built into hands, and small threads built into feet for high speed rolling functions. Pilot of choice: Kanawk.
- Tyrannix: A cold and calculating second-in-command of the Terrakors, who was transferred to the body identified as the R-1100. He is also their communications expert. He is mostly loyal to Nemesis, although he overthrows him when he tires of Nemesis' failed attempts to find the Terror Star. There is no record of him before his awakening as a mind-possessed Robotix body specialized for communications and mid-range combat. He has highly sensitive sensor systems, being able to detect targets approaching from miles away and even accurately telling who exactly the target is. His Robotix body is a skeletal humanoid with wing-like radar panels and plasma engines as his legs and left arm. As such, he never walks on the ground, preferring to hover and fly - although he can use the engines as normal legs if he wants to, as shown when he is running in the air when his leg engines are on. His arm engine also doubles as a flamethrower, laser cannon, and a correction thruster while in zero gravity. Pilot of choice: Gaxon.
- Steggor: A cunning serpentine Terrorkor. Pilot of choice: Nommo.
- Goon: A dim-witted grunt Terrorkor that possesses little intelligence. Pilot of choice: Lupus.
- Venturak: When attacking the stasis chamber, Nemesis and Tyrannix manage to subdue Kontor, replacing his mind with Venturak's mind, in the body named the R-1000, who serves as the Terrorkor spy until he finally reveals his nature during the assault on Zanadon. Pilot of choice: Traxis.
- Terragar: Briefly seen when Nemesis captures Argus and attempts to delete his personality, replacing it with a Terrakor to deceive the Protectons. Once discovered, Terragar's mind is returned into Compucore.
- Captain Exeter Galaxon
Battle of the Titans
Pursued by a battle cruiser, the starship of captain Exeter Galaxon crashes on the ruined planet of Skalorr and its occupants left for dead. However, the crew survives, only to immediately find themselves caught up in a battle between two factions of gigantic robot creatures - the Protectons and Terrakors - that emerge from the ground. While the Terrakors flee the scene, the Protectons befriend Galaxon and his crew, and help them rebuild their ship. During the repairs, Narra and Zarru discover that humans can interface with Robotix to enhance their abilities, while a renewed attack by the Terrakors forces Bront to put the new discovery to the test.
Interfaced with Galaxon, Bront uses his new abilities to rescue Argus, who, interfaced with Tauron, helps him fend the Terrakors off. In the ensuing brief moment of peace, Argus takes the humans to the Protectons’ underground base, where the history of Skalorr is related by Compucore, the planet’s central intelligence. Three million years prior, the organic, lizard-like races of the Protectons and Terrakors were forced to set aside their hostilities when their sun began to nova. While Nemesis planned to use Compucore to launch his ship, the Terrastar, to transport a select few off the planet to safety, Compucore itself suggested the use of underground stasis tubes to preserve the entire population.
Traitor In Our Midst
The tale of Skalorr’s history continues, as the entire population of the planet seal themselves in stasis tubes. However, a radiation leak threatens their lives, and Compucore is forced to transfer and store their essences within itself. When the radiation levels finally subside to normal, millions of years later, Compucore transfers the essences of four Protectons and four Terrakors into the Robotix - giant machines created to rebuild Skalorr. The ensuing battle led into the current events.
As salvage and repair on the ship continues, Kanawk, Gaxon, Lupus and Nommo, dissatisfied with Galaxon’s leadership, set out on their own to find the Terrastar, and offer their services to the Terrakors.
A Spy Is Born
Nemesis accepts Kanawk’s offer, and the renegade humans and Terrakors interface. Shortly after the Protectons complete the construction of a new Robotix, infused with the essence of Kontor, a Protecton, the Terrakors stage a diversion to lure the Protectons out of their base. With the battle raging outside, Nemesis and Tyrannix penetrate the base and replace Kontor’s essence with that of Venturak, a Terrakor, who then interfaces with another turncoat human, Traxis, and is appointed as a spy within the Protecton ranks. He reveals to the Terrakors that the humans’ food supply is dwindling, resulting in an attack on their ship and the theft of their remaining rations.
Repairs on the human ship continue apace, and success is finally achieved. However, the Terrakors attack the Protectons just as Galaxon’s crew blasts off. Helpless before the interfaced Terrakors, the Protectons are facing certain doom until Galaxon’s crew return to save them — only to discover that the Terrakors stole their guidance system when they took their food. The humans crash land onto the planet.
Firestorm at the Oasis
With their interfaces restored, the Protectons fend off the Terrakors, but Galaxon’s ship is now beyond repair, and the humans are still without food. Compucore releases probes to locate consumable vegetation, discovering an oasis that the humans and Protectons head for, while Argus and Venturak remain to guard Compucore. While the other Terrakors raze the oasis in an inferno, Nemesis invades the Protecton base with Venturak’s help and captures Argus, erasing his essence.
The Protectons and humans at the oasis manage to survive by burrowing their way out, but Argus’s failure to respond to his radio hailing prompts Bront to return to the base to investigate. Meanwhile, Nemesis infuses Argus’s body with the essence of another Terrakor, Terragar, and they escape with Compucore. Bront pursues them, but is almost tricked by Terragar, posing as Argus, with the deception only being revealed by Lupus’ presence at the controls. Bront seizes Compucore and flees into the crystalline Desert of Illusions, but, one by one, the illusions are dispelled, leaving Bront staring down Terragar’s cannon barrel.
The Lost Cities
Narra and Jerrok come to Bront’s aid, and the Terrakors flee, leaving Terragar’s deactivated body behind. Compucore is able to restore Argus using a back-up copy of his essence, and the Protectons begin to search for their old city, Zanadon. At the same time, however, the Terrakors search for their own city, Terrakordia, and send Steggor to pursue the Protectons. The Terrakors then discover that it has been crushed by a glacier, and that the Terrastar is nowhere to be found. Enraged, Tyrannix turns on Nemesis and claims leadership of the Terrakors for himself, heading off with Goon to join Steggor.
Meanwhile, the Protectons seek to reactivate Zanadon, turning to Kontor, as he was responsible for creating the city. However, as his essence was replaced within the Robotix by Venturak, he sabotages the turbo flow generator and pins the blame on Bront when the generator threatens to explode and destroy the entire city.
Bront Stands Accused
The Protectons only just manage to escape Zanadon as Compucore seals the city’s dome to contain the explosion to only one of its multiple sectors. The situation is made worse by Venturak, who implicates Bront as a traitor, forcing the other Protectons to imprison him until his innocence can be proved. In the ensuing confusion, Tyrannix and Goon attempt to once again steal Compucore, but Venturak fights back, fearing Nemesis’ wrath. Nemesis and Steggor then re-enter the fray, and Zarru frees Bront, who convinces the other Protectons he is not a traitor by helping them claim victory in the battle.
Exploring inside Zanadon, Zarru discovers an incomplete Robotix body that requires additional parts. Venturak directs the Protectons to a nearby factory that contains the parts they need, but unbeknownst to them, the Terrakors have already set up an ambush there.
The Factory of Death
The Protectons struggle against the factory’s various machines, while Zarru and Flexor put together the unfinished Robotix as best they can. A distress call from Argus forces them to activate the new Robotix, infusing it with the essence of Boltar, a Protecton, who stomps to the aid of the captive Protectons and rescues them. However, Galaxon refuses to leave Zarru in order to be Boltar’s pilot, and, instead, appoints Flexor, and in an effort to prove to Galaxon that he is skilled enough, Zarru sets out to locate the Terrakors.
Zarru Takes the Plunge
Zarru crash lands somewhere in the icy tundra region of Skalorr, where the Terrakors have successfully located the Terrastar submerged in a lake. As they attempt to reactivate the ship, the Protectons — running low on energy — set out searching for Zarru. Goon is given the unenviable job of launching the Terrastar, and quickly loses control of the ship, burying it in an avalanche. Moving quickly, Zarru invades Goon’s control capsule, but is thrown from it and rescued by the Protectons. The Terrakors are forced to flee due to their own depleting energy levels, and both factions head for Siliton Mountain to locate the crystals they need to recharge. However, the Terrakors have a head start, and stage a flash flood to wash the Protectons away.
Attack of the Rock Creatures
Boltar’s bulk shields the Protectons from the flood, and they continue on their search for the crystals. However, both races are captured by a bizarre race of rock creatures, who also feed on the crystals. The creatures separate the humans from their Robotix partners, and imprison them in their subterranean realm within a volcano. As the humans watch, they see the rock creatures smelt their ship (it is unexplained how the ship that was back at the Protections base ended up being where everyone was being held hostage), and it soon becomes apparent that the Robotix are to share the same fate, with Jerrok going first.
All for One
Held captive in a pit by the rock creatures, the humans are threatened by a monstrous feline, which Galaxon uses to escape. Snatching a Siliton crystal, Galaxon recharges Jerrok, who saves himself and holds off the rock creatures while the humans recharge the other Robotix and interface with the nearest ones they can find. This leads to some unstable partnerships, as Argus ejects Gaxon from his cockpit for almost forcing him to kill a rock creature. Goon and Bront fuse into a battering ram that smashes open a path to freedom, but when Tyrannix opens fire on the rock creatures, he triggers the volcano, forcing all the Robotix and humans to partner up correctly to most efficiently save both themselves and the rock creatures from destruction. The rock creatures lead the Protectons to safety, but the Terrakors manage to survive on their own, and once again attack Zanadon, as Tyrannix buries the city in a rockslide.
Battle for Zanadon
After brief concern from the Terrakors that the rockslide may have destroyed Compucore, Zanadon becomes airborne, and the Protectons try to move it out of reach. While Venturak and Compucore monitor city functions, the other Protectons explore various regions of the city. However, when Argus is attacked by Nemesis, he realises that “Kontor” has opened the city’s dome to allow the Terrakors access. Tyrannix and Bront battle in the city’s sporting stadium, while Steggor pursues Narra into the medical bay. Defeating Steggor, Narra discovers Venturak, the charade over, preparing to abscond with Compucore. No match for both Venturak and Tyrannix, Narra is defeated, and Nemesis and the Terrakors escape, with Compucore in their clutches. As the Protectons struggle to even close the city’s domes without Compucore, the now-airborne Terrastar soars overhead, and begins its attack.
The Final Attack
The Terrastar razes Zanadon, but in the ensuing conflagration, the Protectons attempt to penetrate the Terrastar’s hull. Nemesis directs the ship into space, into a nearby asteroid belt, knocking all but Argus and Narra off into the void. They smash their way into the ship, and Narra is quickly knocked off into space by Tyrannix, leaving Argus and Galaxon alone to face the assembled Terrakors. Struggling against the airless vacuum, Galaxon directs the Terrastar toward a giant asteroid, then grapples with Kanawk, as Argus overcomes the Terrakors and comes to his aid, hurling Kanawk aside, and escaping from the ship with Exeter and Compucore as it crashes into the asteroid, exploding in a giant fireball.
Floating in space, Argus is picked up by the other Protectons, who have survived by combining together. They return to the surface of Skalorr, and begin plans to rebuild their world, with help from the humans, who all agree to stay and help their new allies.
But in the void of space, Nemesis still lives ...
- Michael Bell - Loopis, Kontor, Traxis, Venturak
- Arthur Burghardt - Argus, Boltar, Steth
- Corey Burton - Goon, Kanawk, Tauron
- Victor Caroli - Narrator
- Peter Cullen - Nemesis, Sphero, Steggor
- Pat Fraley - Exeter Galaxon, Nomo
- Jason Naylor - Zarru
- Neil Ross - Flexor, Gaxon, Jerrock
- Susan Silo - Compucore, Narra
- Frank Welker - Bront, Terragar, Tyrannix
Robotix suffered from many of the same problems as Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors. The Robotix toy line featured modular building sets that generally resembled space combat vehicles and were marketed as such. The cartoon characters were completely different. For example, Tyrannix was a building set that built a space ship, but the character on the cartoon was a humanoid robot. Also, the sets included a generic commander while the cartoon featured human characters. Unlike Wheeled Warriors, the Robotix cartoon did not continue on its own.
Marvel comics made a short lived comic based on the cartoon. A commercial for the comic was made and aired on Saturday mornings.
- "Robotix - The Movie ". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 2006-07-18.
- Robotix at the Internet Movie Database
- Robotix at the Big Cartoon DataBase
- Robotix: The Movie at the Internet Movie Database