Concept and creation
The Pirate Robot bears a strong resemblance to a Xenomorph from the Alien franchise, a creature often referenced in Akira Toriyama's manga, such as Dr. Slump chapter 14, "Arale on the Loose: Part 1". Its appearance and general concept was also based on a robot soldier that appear in Akira Toriyama's early depiction of Dragon Ball, titled Dragon Boy.
The Pirate Robot attacks Goku, Krillin, and Bulma when they arrive in an harbor inside the Pirate Cave, looking for a Dragon Ball, as well as the pirates' treasure. It was equipped with a sword (which Krillin destroys during their battle), an arm-mounted cannon with machine gun and flamethrower functions, a powerful tail that could electrify people trapped in its coils, and jets in its feet that allowed it to hover in the air and move quickly across ground and water. In the English dub, it is able to speak four stereotypical pirate quotes: "argh mateys", "yo ho ho", "shiver me timbers" and "walk the plank"; in the original Japanese dub, it is completely silent.
The Pirate Robot is by far the most powerful villain up to this point in the series, taking dozens of punches from Goku and Krillin with barely any damage (unlike Major Metallitron, who was serious damaged by Goku's attacks). Even cannon fire and being caught in a large explosion only inflicts superficial damage. The Pirate Robot is eventually destroyed by Goku, who jumps from the top of a large building to gain increased momentum and punches through its head with a focused strike, destroying the power core.
- Hikou – A flotation device in the Pirate Robot's feet enables it to hover in the air and glide across the ground and the surface of water at high speed.
- Sword – The Pirate Robot wields a large sword.
- Killer Machine Gun (キラーマシンガン) – The Pirate Robot is equipped with a machine gun in its left arm. Named in Dragon Ball Heroes.
- Electric Tail (Denryū) – The Pirate Robot can attack and shock his opponent with his electrified tail. He uses this against Goku.
- Flamethrower – The Pirate Robot's gun arm has a flamethrower setting. Used only in the anime and in video games like the Legacy of Goku series and Dragon Ball: Advanced Adventure.
Video game appearances
The Pirate Robot is a boss in Dragon Ball: Daimaō Fukkatsu, Dragon Ball 3: Gokuden (called Bonkon Robo), Dragon Ball Z: Super Gokuden: Totsugeki-Hen, Dragon Ball: Revenge of King Piccolo, and Dragon Ball: Origins 2. It appears as a boss and a playable character in Dragon Ball: Advanced Adventure, and it is also playable in Dragon Ball Heroes and Dragon Ball Z: Dokkan Battle. In the bonus level 3-7 of Dragon Ball: Origins 2, the Pirate Robot attacks Krillin in the treasure room when the latter returns to the Pirate Cave in order to retrieve the pirates' treasure. After defeating the Pirate Robot, Krillin unintentionally destroys the treasure by opening an explosive chest.
In Dragon Ball Z: The Legacy of Goku II and Dragon Ball Z: Buu's Fury, there are types of enemies called Destroyers that resemble the Pirate Robot (however most of them lack a sword and their machine gun is replaced by a flamethrower). In The Legacy of Goku II, the Destroyer has four different variations: Red Destroyers (the weakest of the three), Green Destroyers (second strongest of the three), Gold Destroyers (strongest of the three), and Annihilators (blue Destroyers who appear in Hell). Like all enemies, the Destroyer can be scanned with the scouter, and its in-game description reads: "This giant robot bears the insignia of the Red Ribbon Army. Scanning indicates that this robot was designed for military purposes. The thick Geromatium armor on this robot makes it invulnerable to most conventional attack." In Buu's Fury, stronger versions of the Destroyer exist; the Annihilator and Death Machine. Additionally, a "nastier, stronger, and meaner older" Destroyer called Pilaf's Guardian is the boss of Pilaf's Castle in Buu's Fury, where it helps Emperor Pilaf guarding his Three-Star Dragon Ball. Variations of Pilaf's Guardian are the Knight Destroyer, Metal Hulk, and Shadow Colossus.
In Dragon Ball Z: Attack of the Saiyans, the Pirate Robot is a mini-boss in the Pirate Cave, and it also appears as a regular enemy with another enemy called Skull Robot (which is a blue Pirate Robot) in this place. He also appears as regular enemy in the World Martial Arts Tournament sewer, with another enemy called Captain Robot (a red Pirate Robot).
Enemies based on the Pirate Robot also appear as enemies in the computer game Dragon Ball Online. These robots have a more arrow shaped head, a wheel for a leg, different coloration, and different number in place of 2.
- Despite having the number 2 on each of its legs, the Pirate Robot is unlikely to be Android 2 since he was created before the Red Ribbon Androids.
- In one scene of Dragon Ball Z, during a flashback, a Prototype Android similar to the Pirate Robot can be seen hanging in Dr. Gero's Lab.
- In The Legacy of Goku II, the scouter data indicating the Destroyers were created by the Red Ribbon Army is possibly a reference to the fact the Pirate Robot appears during the Red Ribbon Army Arc of Dragon Ball. Their layer of thick armor being named "geromantium" is likely a reference Dr. Gero's name. Based on those elements, it can be assumed the Destroyers were created by Dr. Gero, a major antagonist in the game, who may have actually based them on the Pirate Robot.
- The Cyclopian Guards from The Return of Cooler and God Guardon from Plan to Eradicate the Saiyans share a resemblance with the Pirate Robot. In addition, the Cyclopian Guards could be defeated by an opponent focusing their power into one point of attack, much like the Pirate Robot, and Goku defeats God Guardon with an attack similar to the one he used on the Pirate Robot.
- The guardians of Hell from the fourth Bleach movie Hell World, look very similar in appearance to the Pirate Robot.
- The robot is capable of speech in the English dub, but speaks pirate-related quotes in a robotic tone.
- Its torso armor looks eerily similar to Saiyan lower class battle armor. Given the concept of Saiyans did not exist at the time of its appearance, it may've inspired its design in the first place.
- The robot's skull head is quite similar to a Xenomorph's head, with similar jaws as well.