Discovery Season 3 was the third season of BattleBots since its return to television in 2015, and the first season since the Discovery network picked the show up from ABC.
After ABC did not renew the show after 2016, BattleBots saw a year-long hiatus before its eventual return in 2018. The Discovery Network would often air the main episode on Friday evenings, with an "encore episode" airing the following Wednesday on the Science Channel. These encore episodes would often feature an additional fight exclusive to the Science Channel airings - typically a rumble.
Discovery also produced a six-part mini-series called BattleBots Resurrection which showcasted the struggles various teams faced between battles during the season. Filmed parallel to the 2018 season of BattleBots, these episodes were released on the Discovery website in October 2018.
In April 2018, the BattleBots YouTube channel uploaded a thirty-second trailer to promote Discovery Season 3. The first half of the trailer focuses on Faruq Tauheed, confirming his return as ring announcer, performing poetry and various teams are shown entering the BattleBox. The second half hones in more on teasing upcoming battles, many of which were included in the first episode of the 2018 season, such as Bite Force vs. Blacksmith and Tombstone vs. Minotaur. Commentary lines from Chris Rose and Kenny Florian play over snippets of other fights, some of which are only a few frames long, before it is confirmed that "BattleBots is now on Discovery", naming May 11 as the season premiere date.
"From now on, just like any other sports league, there will be an entire season of match-ups, battles and throwdowns."
— Kenny Florian teases the Fight Night format in Episode 1.
This season introduced the Fight Night format as opposed to the straight knock-out competition with qualifiers seen in ABC seasons. This new format allowed for a greater field of competing teams, with 55 robots gracing the BattleBox. Each robot would aim to fight a total of four times across the seasons, and earning a final win/loss record for the consideration of the selection committee, would would pick the Top 16. Each episode featured a fight card - four or more fights in the order they would happen in the episode. This was often followed by the Main Event, typically comprising of two high-tier bots which would be the most hyped-up battle of the episode.
The Desperado Tournament was introduced during the season for mid-season strugglers, where teams could opt in to compete in an eight-way knockout bracket, where the eventual winner would be guaranteed a spot in the Top 16. In Discovery Season 3, this was won by Donald Hutson and Lock-Jaw, who beat Kraken, Valkyrie and Lucky to earn a place in the Tournament Bracket. Lock-Jaw would ultimately progress to the semi-finals, earning two further wins before losing to Minotaur. Two further guaranteed places in the Top 16 were confirmed via two play-in matches during Episode 17. This saw End Game, WAR Hawk and Brutus fight it out for the No.15 seed, and six robots duel for the No.16 seed in the Last Chance Rumble.
To break up the main season, BattleBots also produced a USA vs. The World special episode, This pitted US-based teams against some of the competition's international representatives. These matches were primarily fought as 1v1s, with the exception of a 2v2 Tag Team between Petunia & Predator and Bale Spear & Double Dutch. None of the wins or losses from this special were canon to the respective robots' season records.
The season was ultimately won by Bite Force, built and driven by Paul Ventimiglia of Aptyx Designs. This marked his second Giant Nut win, taking the title back from Ray Billings and Tombstone. The Most Destructive Robot award was won by Victor Soto and ROTATOR, largely due to its demolition of Icewave en route to the quarter-finals. Team HUGE picked up the Best Design award for their unique, yet effective design, and British entry Monsoon became the inaugral winners of the Founders' Award, given by Greg Munson and Trey Roski for the team and robot that best embodied the spirit of BattleBots.
Soon after its original broadcast in the US, the 2018 season aired in many North and South American countries, courtesy of Discovery Latin America. Blaze and Discovery Africa were responsible for airing the season in many African countries, with Discovery Middle East covering that portion of the world. Zee TV aired Season 4 in a handful of Asian countries such as India and Bangladesh, whereas Aceone Media broadcast it in South Korea. Australia and New Zealand received the season via their respective Discovery offshoots, whereas 9Go aired it in Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea. Many of these networks would pick up future seasons of BattleBots, with the show transferring from ABC to Discovery in the US.
In February 2022, BattleBots announced that they had struck a deal to air the 2018 season in the United Kingdom on ITV4, with episodes initially planned to air every weeknight starting on April 18. It was later confirmed that the first episode would debut two weeks earlier on April 4, with the season being shown on weekday evenings in a 7pm timeslot. Episodes broadcast by ITV4 include the bonus battles and segments initially exclusive to Science Channel airings in the US.
The season was supposed to feature 56 robots, but was reduced to 55 after the withdrawal of Raven.