Saturday, March 19, 2011

Who Would Win in a Fight, a Robot or Two Bears?

This quandary has plagued mankind for centuries, and I would be honored to give my opinion.
Now, initially, there seems like a clear winner in this match: the robot, due to robots natural usage of missiles and machine guns, while bears can only claw at them and maybe throw nuts at them. However, one forgets that the bears have the advantage of numbers, which can be exploited in many different ways. For example, one of the bears could distract the robot while the other one sneaks up behind it and tackles it before biting off its robot head, and this is only one of many possible ways to take advantage. 

Let’s look at the aforementioned scenario a little more closely. If the first bear was able to distract the robot and the second bear were to attempt to ambush it, there would already be a number of naturally difficulties against them, even disregarding the possibility of the robot being able to turn its head 180 or even 360 degrees (like Mechagodzilla). For instance, bears are very large, and a bear “sneaking up” on something is very hard to imagine, and would be even less effective if the robot has sensors or some sort of internal radar which alerts it to nearby large mammals trying to attack it. The inclusion of such a specific radar system is effectively doubled when one keeps in mind that the robot’s creator may have created the robot SPECIFICALLY for fighting bears. If this is the case, then it is equally likely that the inventor did not count on there being more than one bear, thus giving the bears the advantage all over again. 

At this point, there are a couple things about the bears and the robot themselves that must be taken into account, such as:

  1. The intelligence of the bears-are the Bernstein-smart? Yogi-smart (in this case, making them more easily distracted by picanic baskets)? Or are they just your average run-of-the-mill bear? And if the last is true, why is the robot even bothering with them anyway? If either of the first two are the case, then the bears are the clear winners. Of course, until we take into account the second deciding factor…
  2. The design and intentional purpose of the robot- is it a sort of military robot, like one of the robots from Iron Man 2? Is it a scouting robot, like the Probots from Star Wars? Is it a sort of all-in-one robot, like the ones from I, Robot? Or is it just a single-function retard-equivalent robot, like a roomba? If either of the first two are true, the bears don’t seem to stand much of a chance, but one must keep in mind that the first, third, and fourth choices don’t seem to be likely to be in the forest fighting bears. Therefore, we must assume that the second choice is closer to the truth-a lightweight scouting robot. If this is the case, it seems to even the playing field a bit: it has advanced-enough sensors to sense a bear ambush, and also likely has some sort of low-grade laser, which could be useful if it sees the bears before the bears see it (which, due to its radar system, will likely be the case). However, if the bears DO get close enough to it, then the robot’s ass is grass because of its lightweight structure, and if the bears could CORNER it, there really WOULD be nowhere it could go. However, the argument of whether or not they could corner it leads nicely into another thing that must be considered…
  3. The environment in which the two are fighting- is this a robot scouting mission deep into some unknown forest? Is this an eco-terrorism infiltration mission deep into robot territory? Or is this the result of a time-traveler ending up in Ancient Rome and entering his robot companion as a gladiator? If the second or third are true (especially the second), then that makes it easier to discard the idea of the robot being lightweight or built for scouting, and more likely for it to be used for combat. (SIDENOTE: The reason this applies more to the second than it does to the third is because if a time-traveler ended up in Ancient Rome with a military death machine, chances are he wouldn’t bother with the gladiator fights and would just declare himself Cyber-Emperor of the New Roman Empire, thus drastically altering the world as we know it.) However, I think we can safely discard the entire second option, not only because bears generally don’t have tendencies to commit terrorism, but also because it raises the case as to why the eco-terrorists used bears for an infiltration mission, as opposed to something more stealthy, like, say, a team of squirrels. If the first is true, then we can default back to the scenario outlined in the discussion of the robot’s purpose.
So, now that we can safely assume a certain scenario, we can get down to the details of the actual conflict. Now, let’s say the scouting robot moves into the forest. Here is where one of two things could happen:
  1. The robot sees the bears first: If this is the case, then the robot has an initial advantage as outlined above, and could begin firing at the bears, depending on…
1a. The bears are hostile toward the robot: The bears begin to charge the robot. If this occurs, this could go one of two ways:
1aa. The bears both charge from the same side: The robot takes them both down. The robot wins.
1ab. The bears both charge from different sides. The robot perhaps takes out one of them, but the other one gets it from behind, and the robot, hemmed in by the trees, is destroyed. Bears win, but have suffered one casualty.
1b. The bears don’t respond to the robot: The bears just get on with eating and crapping and the robot zooms happily by. The conflict is avoided completely. Neither wins.
1c. The bears are hostile, but don’t openly charge it, intending to find it again later and eat it. This could go a couple of different directions…
1ca. The robot is caught on an open plain and the bears, utilizing their powerful leg muscles, catch up with it and eat it. Bears win.
1cb. The bears charge it on an open plain, but the robot turns its head 180 degrees and takes them both down. Robot wins.
1cc. The robot is faster than the bears and goes down an unexpected path, so the bears lose track of the robot. The conflict is avoided completely. Neither wins. (Unless some other woodland creatures down the road take issue with the robot, but that’s another scenario for another time.)
1cd. The robot pauses for a rest in an open field, because it is solar powered. The bears sneak up on it while it recharges and destroys it. Bears win.

  1. The bears see the robot first. In this case, the bears have a couple ways of going about this…
2a. (See all scenarios outlined under “1c.”)
2b. The bears see the robot first and decide to put up Ewok-style home-alone traps for the robot. This could go a couple ways…  
2ba. While the bears are setting up their traps, the robot dashes past them and the bears miss their chance. The conflict is avoided completely. Neither wins.
2bb. While the bears are setting up their traps, the robot notices them and sees what they’re up to. The bears, preoccupied by setting up the traps, are unable to run as the robot mows them down. Robot wins.
2bc. While the bears are setting up their traps, the robot has to stop and rest because it is solar powered. By the time it’s ready to keep moving, the traps are completed and they all activate, destroying the robot. Bears win.
2bd. While the bears are setting up their traps, the robot has to stop and rest because it is solar powered. By the time it’s ready to keep moving, the traps are completed, but they backfire, killing the bears. Robot wins, even though it doesn’t know it.
2be. While the bears are setting up their traps, the robot has to stop and rest because it is solar powered. By the time it’s ready to keep moving, the traps are completed, but they do not activate, and the robot keeps going. The conflict is avoided completely. Neither wins.

I sincerely hope you enjoyed my take on this age-old question. Thank you for reading.


  1. So... Is it me or did too much thought go into this?

  2. No, it's just you. I think we should all take time out of our day and think of stuff like this.

  3. Definitely the robot imho. Great read once again! I'm loving these xD They're so funny....

  4. I'm gonna have to go with the bears. Bears are fucking awesome!

  5. Haha love the conflict in your written work! keep up the great work man!

  6. obiously the bears those things are godless killing machines.

  7. great post. looking forward to reading your next one