I wish I could account everything that happened in this game. Sadly, my memory is not good enough for that, but I'll do my best
Five players, Max, Ellen, Jay, Adam, and myself (Brendan) sat down to play a game of Robo Rally. Max was a brand-new player, and Ellen Jay and Adam had all only played once, so I set up (what I thought would be) a short 3-flag course on the Island Map. For those who have an interest in trying to follow along, set the word "Island" in the bottom left-hand corner. We began two squares to the right of the hammar and wrench, the first flag was two squares to the right of the wrench on the bottom row, flag 2 was 2 squares below the wrench in the upper right hand corner, and flig three was one square above the pit in the lower right hand corner. We played by what I remembered were the rules for virtual bots (I'm not sure we did this right), and since we had a new player, I decided we should play without life tokens)
The game started off very interesting, with two people (myself and Adam) making misplots, though without disastrous consequences. Jay played very well, ending up one square away from the flag. Ellen was also close, though had headed a different route to get there. Max chose to end the turn on the option square, and drew the tractor beam (instead of damaging can pull someone one square towards you). Jay thought that he was going to touch flag one this turn on phase two, but unfortunately for him, Max had a move 3 in the 2nd register, and shoved Jay off the edge. Ellen was able to touch the flag on the third phase, though not without taking some damage from Brendan and Max. Max then touched the flag on phase 4, but also used the tractor beam to pull Brendan one square, causing his move two to overshoot him one hitting the flag. The next round, Brendan touched the flag, but then spun in place due to a lack of move cards, while Max and Ellen were on their way to the 2nd flag.
A misplot by Max, sending him to his doom in the pit, and also some bad cards by Ellen (like spending an entire turn smashing into the wall), allowed Brendan to catch up on her heels, and allowed Jay to touch the flag and also start heading to flag two. In the next round, Ellen managed to touch the flag, and surprisingly, Brendan did too. Sadly, they both took a lot of damage from Jay coming up the left side. The end of the round saw Ellen at the corner of the board, with Brendan on the flag, (two squares away). Wanting to hop into the lead, Brendan tried to ram Ellen off the edge. Sadly, Ellen's move 2 had a higher number than Brendan's, and so his plan backfired. Through more pushing, he managed to not die on this round, and not only that, but managed to get out of the way of some fire. There was heavy damage all around, as Max had now also rejoined the fight for flag two, but we were all afraid to power down given the number of robots in the area. Somewhere in this mess Adam managed to touch flag one.
Brendan hoped to run off, powered by a hand of 6 cards, unfortunately, he managed to take 4 damage in that turn, one from every other player on the board. Ellen managed to live, but took some damage, and was left with one register locked. I believe Jay managed to touch the 2nd flag, with Max close behind.
I don't remember exactly what happened after this, as coming back to life, I had a couple good plays, and thought I was well on my way to victory. Unfortunately, I had two rounds with no cards (all I needed was a turn right and a move one). This caused me to spend one turn having 5 move ones in the opposite direction of the conveyor belt. This stall allowed the other three who had touched flag two to catch up, and Adam also joined the fray in the upper right hand corner of the board.
Another hand of bad cards sent Brendan to his doom in the pit, but not before having dealt some damage to Ellen and Jay. The next round, Jay too was sent to his doom in the pit. It looked like Ellen was a shoe in to win at this point, but she too was knocked off course into the pit. Then it looked like Max was going to win, but he also misplotted to his doom. Then, it looked like where we were before, Brendan about a turn ahead, looking on his way to victory. But again, he was knocked off course, and fell to his doom. Once again, it looked to Ellen to win, but getting hit for enough damage, she had a register locked for a while. Eventually this caught up to her and she was conveyered into the pit. Max too came very close to the third flag, but he was thrown into the pit. Now, Jay and Brendan were trying to run along the top side, when a move three by Adam (still heading toward flag two) through the both of them off the side. This was the last though, as a couple of good plots and draws by Brendan allowed him to surge into the lead, and eventually finally touch flag three!
I know this is a very long session report, but it was such a crazy game, with so many times looking like on player was unstoppable to win, but every time they managed to die, leaving someone else with a chance. Despite how long it took (almost two hours), all seemed to have a great time.