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SamMullen
03-27-2011, 02:51 PM
This is really the first year that I've actually paid attention to who wins regionals other than what I attended personally, and so I was wondering:

This year it seems like almost always the first or second seeded alliance wins the regional. I think I've seen only a couple of exceptions to that so far. Is that the normal thing, or have other years had more of a variation in which alliances win?

GGCO
03-27-2011, 02:54 PM
Think about it, and mathematically/statistically it makes sense. If the first seed picks the second, then the first alliance has the top two teams in the regional. This makes for a powerhouse alliance.

nikeairmancurry
03-27-2011, 02:56 PM
This is really the first year that I've actually paid attention to who wins regionals other than what I attended personally, and so I was wondering:

This year it seems like almost always the first or second seeded alliance wins the regional. I think I've seen only a couple of exceptions to that so far. Is that the normal thing, or have other years had more of a variation in which alliances win?

This is usually a normal thing, because of the strengh of the number 1 and 2 alliances.. Usually the number 1 alliance is composed of the best two robots at the event. Depending on qualfiying matches, a not so dominate team can really throw a wrench into picking and really make it anyones game. (Example the 2008 great lakes regional, where the number one seed was declined 3 times, breaking up the picking of some other top 8 teams). And sometimes you just get that alliance that catches all the breaks and pulls a upset.

Come St. Louis, any alliance really has a shot at winning a divison, there will probably be 24 very good robots in each divison, making things very interesting.

Basel A
03-27-2011, 03:01 PM
Think about it, and mathematically/statistically it makes sense. If the first seed picks the second, then the first alliance has the top two teams in the regional. This makes for a powerhouse alliance.

This isn't always true. It ONLY makes sense if the ranking system is an accurate measure of robot performance, which it never is. W-T-L systems, or even any systems, don't take into account robot improvement, lucky or unlucky qualification pairings, or a number of other factors..

nikeairmancurry
03-27-2011, 03:02 PM
I suppose so, but the first alliance also has the disadvantage of the last pick, which could force them into picking a weaker third alliance member, while the eighth alliance might be able to pick two teams of roughly equal strength to have a more well rounded alliance.

This is true, but the overpowering #1 is usually to much. i don't remember the statistic, but I think it was 70% of number 1 alliances win the event.

GGCO
03-27-2011, 03:03 PM
This isn't always true. It ONLY makes sense if the ranking system is an accurate measure of robot performance, which it never is. W-T-L systems, or even any systems, don't take into account robot improvement, lucky or unlucky qualification pairings, or a number of other factors..

That's definitely true. For example, this past weekend at Niles, team 1941 ended up being the 4th place alliance captain. The problem was that their robot was basically a cart with four wheels. They didn't even have a minibot*.

*I'm not trying to be cruel, rather I'm stating the facts. Their robot never (to my knowledge) scored a single point for their alliance. Considering that the GDC wanted Logomotion to discourage defense, I find this ironic.

SamMullen
03-27-2011, 03:05 PM
Thats what I always figured. I always assumed that since the rankings never put exactly the best people in the top eight (not that the ranking system is bad, it just is impossible to account for every factor), that every one there had some chance to take it all.

XaulZan11
03-27-2011, 03:14 PM
Another factor is that there are only 2 minibot poles per alliance and 'bonus' points given to faster minibots. The top seed typically teams the team with the fastest minibot, so they typically get 1st and 2nd in the minibot race. In past years ('07, 09) three good scoreres could beat 2 elite scorers, but not this year because there are only 2 minibot poles and a limited amount of pegs to score on. Its a lot like '08, which had only 2 trackballs. If there were 3 minibot poles per alliance and more scoring pegs (so 2 robots can't almost score on them all), you would see more upsets.

Ken Streeter
03-27-2011, 03:22 PM
This is really the first year that I've actually paid attention to who wins regionals other than what I attended personally, and so I was wondering:

This year it seems like almost always the first or second seeded alliance wins the regional. I think I've seen only a couple of exceptions to that so far. Is that the normal thing, or have other years had more of a variation in which alliances win?

At small regional tournaments where there are only a few teams that stand out above the others, it is very difficult for low-seeded alliances to win.

However, at regional tournaments where there is much more depth in the field, it becomes more likely for lower-seeded alliances to win. The Week One Granite State Regional is one of the tournaments with a deeper field composed of many excellent teams without any dominating powerhouse teams. With a deep field, the second pick can still be a good robot, particularly with a serpentine draft which gives the lower-seeded teams the potential to make a better second pick than the top-seeded teams.

Our team (1519) has won the Granite State Regional three times, and never as the #1-seeded alliance.

In 2006, we were the first pick of the #6 seeded team, 1276, which had been promoted to the captain of the #5 seeded alliance. The alliance, composed of 1276, 1519, and 133 were the #6, #8, and #13 seeds of the tournament. In order to win, we went head-to-head with the #4 seeded alliance, #1 seeded alliance, and #2 seeded alliance.

In 2010, we were the first pick of the #2 seeded team, 1073, and joined by 1058. We went head-to-head with the #1 seeds in the finals.

In 2011, we were the first pick of the #3 seeded team, 175, and joined by 176. We met the #1 seeds in the finals.

Each of the above "upset" wins was enabled by having a strong alliance of *three* capable robots. Having a deep field and excellent scouting (to enable a good second pick) are key aspects of winning from a lower-seeded position. Three excellent robots playing with a good strategy can often upset two exceptional robots who have a weaker third robot.

PS: The above history of our team at GSR makes me wonder how often the #1 seeds have won in New Hampshire...

Grim Tuesday
03-27-2011, 03:35 PM
It is always possible, but unlikely. This year at FLR, the number 2 seeded alliance gave 217+2056 a run for their money with a tie game (easily the most intense match I have ever seen)

At Philly, last year, we were the 8th seed, moved up to 5th, and gave the first a run for their money with a 7-8 game.

I feel like some of the problem is that 1st always plays 8th first, which makes sense for a viewers standpoint (if the seeding was accurate, the finals will be seed 1 vs seed 2). But I have never in my life seen an eighth seeded alliance win against the first (well, except at FLR this year, where there was a red card involved)

SamMullen
03-27-2011, 03:39 PM
I feel like some of the problem is that 1st always plays 8th first, which makes sense for a viewers standpoint (if the seeding was accurate, the finals will be seed 1 vs seed 2). But I have never in my life seen an eighth seeded alliance win against the first (well, except at FLR this year, where there was a red card involved)

This year at the Autodesk Portland regional, the Eighth seed beat the first seed after 3 ridiculously close matches, before losing to the fourth seed Alliance, which went on to win the regional. It was an amazing match to watch.

Vikesrock
03-27-2011, 03:41 PM
But I have never in my life seen an eighth seeded alliance win against the first (well, except at FLR this year, where there was a red card involved)

2009 North Star regional #8 blew out #1 in 2 matches. While our number 8 alliance was decent, it was more a factor of a team sneaking into the #1 spot and not being very prepared to make a good pick.

JABot67
03-27-2011, 03:47 PM
What I've noticed is this: In the past couple seasons, two good robots could hold up an alliance and win a match. The third one could play some very effective D (and some finals matches have been decided by how good the third robot is at playing defense) but especially in the quarters and semis the overall firepower of the top two robots in the top two alliances is too much for the others.

This perhaps is a side effect of FIRST's decision to design really offense-oriented games since 2007. That year was crazy: an alliance could score 256 points in one match and 0 the next, all depending on how much defense was played against them. Rack 'n Roll was, in my opinion, the only game where three good robots could beat two great robots and one not so great robot, which resulted in a lot of 8 over 1 upsets. This phenomenon was augmented by the fact that since defense could shut down many offensive teams, the best teams often would not seed first. Even when they did, they often lost if the regional or division was stacked enough to provide power to the #8 alliance.

Look at the TBA results for GLR and West Michigan... more wins for blue than red in the elims. Oh look... 1114 and 67 lost in the semis due to amazing defense and the fact that 57's robot could not provide the defense necessary to stop the opponents from scoring. In 2007, none of the #1 alliances at Champs escaped the divisions and reached Einstein. The #8 alliance of 190, 987, and 177 won in the finals. This could be interpreted as proving my point that 2007 was the only recent year where the #8 alliance could be the best alliance at an event.

However, back then there was this huge discussion about how overpowered defense was in FIRST and how boring it was to watch robots bump into each other instead of score. There were also instances where teams played defense that was too rough (http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?t=56908) and complaints about how the serpentine draft gives an advantage to the #8 alliance and should be done away with. Perhaps as a result, FIRST has designed games in recent years to be based on offense, so the good teams can seed high in qualifications and be less hindered by defense in the elims. These offense-powered games in recent years have given the #1 alliance more of a chance to dominate a competition.

BrendanB
03-27-2011, 03:59 PM
At small regional tournaments where there are only a few teams that stand out above the others, it is very difficult for low-seeded alliances to win.

However, at regional tournaments where there is much more depth in the field, it becomes more likely for lower-seeded alliances to win. The Week One Granite State Regional is one of the tournaments with a deeper field composed of many excellent teams without any dominating powerhouse teams. With a deep field, the second pick can still be a good robot, particularly with a serpentine draft which gives the lower-seeded teams the potential to make a better second pick than the top-seeded teams.

Our team (1519) has won the Granite State Regional three times, and never as the #1-seeded alliance.

In 2006, we were the first pick of the #6 seeded team, 1276, which had been promoted to the captain of the #5 seeded alliance. The alliance, composed of 1276, 1519, and 133 were the #6, #8, and #13 seeds of the tournament. In order to win, we went head-to-head with the #4 seeded alliance, #1 seeded alliance, and #2 seeded alliance.

In 2010, we were the first pick of the #2 seeded team, 1073, and joined by 1058. We went head-to-head with the #1 seeds in the finals.

In 2011, we were the first pick of the #3 seeded team, 175, and joined by 176. We met the #1 seeds in the finals.

Each of the above "upset" wins was enabled by having a strong alliance of *three* capable robots. Having a deep field and excellent scouting (to enable a good second pick) are key aspects of winning from a lower-seeded position. Three excellent robots playing with a good strategy can often upset two exceptional robots who have a weaker third robot.

PS: The above history of our team at GSR makes me wonder how often the #1 seeds have won in New Hampshire...
Very good points here! Depth and alliance partners are key to the outcome of a regional and alliance and whether or not the number 1 seed makes it all the way through!

Come to think of it, the only time the number 1 seed didn't win GSR was 2006, 2009 (team 238 was number 1 seed, picked 319 and 562, and were semifinalists), 2010, and 2011. All other years that I can remember (03, 04, 05, 07, and 08) were won by the number 1 seed alliance. 5/9 chance the number 1 seed wins is why I love attending GSR!

Racer26
03-27-2011, 04:20 PM
That's definitely true. For example, this past weekend at Niles, team 1941 ended up being the 4th place alliance captain. The problem was that their robot was basically a cart with four wheels. They didn't even have a minibot*.

*I'm not trying to be cruel, rather I'm stating the facts. Their robot never (to my knowledge) scored a single point for their alliance. Considering that the GDC wanted Logomotion to discourage defense, I find this ironic.

This happened at Waterloo this weekend too. 2361 was the #5 alliance captain, despite being a box on wheels with NO means of scoring. I'm not sure if they had some scoring mechanism that they took off at some point over the weekend, but when I saw their robot, I couldn't believe they had made #5 alliance captain. Luck of the draw I guess.

Norman J
03-27-2011, 04:41 PM
Apparently the number 1 seed has never won the West Michigan District event. Granted, FiM has only been around for 3 years.

waialua359
03-27-2011, 04:49 PM
What I've noticed is this: In the past couple seasons, two good robots could hold up an alliance and win a match. The third one could play some very effective D (and some finals matches have been decided by how good the third robot is at playing defense) but especially in the quarters and semis the overall firepower of the top two robots in the top two alliances is too much for the others.

This perhaps is a side effect of FIRST's decision to design really offense-oriented games since 2007. That year was crazy: an alliance could score 256 points in one match and 0 the next, all depending on how much defense was played against them. Rack 'n Roll was, in my opinion, the only game where three good robots could beat two great robots and one not so great robot, which resulted in a lot of 8 over 1 upsets. This phenomenon was augmented by the fact that since defense could shut down many offensive teams, the best teams often would not seed first. Even when they did, they often lost if the regional or division was stacked enough to provide power to the #8 alliance.

Look at the TBA results for GLR and West Michigan... more wins for blue than red in the elims. Oh look... 1114 and 67 lost in the semis due to amazing defense and the fact that 57's robot could not provide the defense necessary to stop the opponents from scoring. In 2007, none of the #1 alliances at Champs escaped the divisions and reached Einstein. The #8 alliance of 190, 987, and 177 won in the finals. This could be interpreted as proving my point that 2007 was the only recent year where the #8 alliance could be the best alliance at an event.

However, back then there was this huge discussion about how overpowered defense was in FIRST and how boring it was to watch robots bump into each other instead of score. There were also instances where teams played defense that was too rough (http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?t=56908) and complaints about how the serpentine draft gives an advantage to the #8 alliance and should be done away with. Perhaps as a result, FIRST has designed games in recent years to be based on offense, so the good teams can seed high in qualifications and be less hindered by defense in the elims. These offense-powered games in recent years have given the #1 alliance more of a chance to dominate a competition.
This analysis is quite interesting about 2007.
I made a similar one back after that season, but for different reasons.
In 2007, I noticed that a lot of the lower seeds were winning due in large part that they had 1st pickings of the "ramp" bots that gave a relatively large bonus for winning matches. With proper defense and pinpoint scoring to block the multiplier on certain pegs of the rack, they could come back and beat you on the bonus.
The bonus back then was much more difficult than this year.
This season, your bonus is independent of an alliance partner and could be done entirely by yourself. Everyone can technically have the same type of 1 to 1.x sec minibot. The formula to creating one is out there and can be done independently of your robot between regionals. You would not (nearly impossible for most) be able to go from a non-bonus bot to one all of a sudden in your next tournament.

IMO, that game gave every alliance the best chance to win a regional. You had to be very, very careful on who you picked in trying to beat out the other alliances.

Billfred
03-27-2011, 06:18 PM
Looking at the data for #1 alliances going back to the Palmetto Regional's inception:

2004 (343/1402/665): Out in quarterfinals (three matches), #2 won
2005 (1251/25/301): Finalists (three matches), #2 won
2006 (68/180/1028): Semifinalists (two matches), #6 won
2007 (1251/1758/1626): Finalists (three matches), #2 won
2008 (343/342/393/804): Finalists (four matches), #7 won
2009 (3025/2815/1379): Finalists (two matches), #3 won
2010 (343/1261/1398): Champions (three matches)
2011 (180/2363/2815): Champions (three matches)

2005 was the start of 3v3 play, and 2006 was the start of the serpentine draft. Take from this what you will.

The Lucas
03-27-2011, 08:12 PM
Here is some previous years threads with data:
My 2009 prediction & results of 50% Alliance #1 (http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?t=75218)
2008 with some '07 & '06 data (http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?t=66836)

The Philadelphia Regional is an interesting case as far as #1 seed vs the field. Last year I successfully predicted that the #1 seed would win Philly (http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?p=941786#post941786) due to the new seeding algorithm (also contains my 09 spreadsheet). This a major streak breaker because before 2010, no #1 seed had won Philly since 2001. Philly tends to have a large similar top tier of offensive robots and lots of defensive bots that causes a lot of upsets during quals and elims.

I don't have the % of #1 Alliance champions in 2010, but I suspect it was higher than usual. The scheduling algorithm (as much as I disliked it) did a good job of seeding the top robots high regardless of schedule difficulty. This year with a return to WLT system, I have been more interested in the how OPR correlates to event winner. The team with the highest OPR during the quals almost always wins the event even if they are not in the #1 alliance (won all the Week 1 events). In Chesapeake where the top team didn't win (one of the few cases), the alliance with the highest combined OPR did win.

Tom Line
03-27-2011, 08:43 PM
This is really the first year that I've actually paid attention to who wins regionals other than what I attended personally, and so I was wondering:

This year it seems like almost always the first or second seeded alliance wins the regional. I think I've seen only a couple of exceptions to that so far. Is that the normal thing, or have other years had more of a variation in which alliances win?

No, it's not always like this.

This year, especially in many of the weaker regionals, you've seen only a bare handful of robots that can deploy minibots consistently. With the minibot race consisting of more than half the score of a normal match, putting two teams together who can both deploy minibots is an advantage that is nearly impossible to overcome.

As the season progresses the games will begin to rely more on hanging because more robots will have minibots. I would expect Michigan State Championship to be that way, however I would expect the National Championship to be slightly less so since so many teams attend because they can pay the fee without having to qualify based on robot quality (not that there's anything wrong with that system - I'm just saying).

Shmee
03-27-2011, 08:51 PM
As people have stated, statistically, it does make sense for the #1 seed to win the regional most of the time.

2009 was our craziest year. At Peachtree, we were ranked like 43 out of 48 teams, were picked by the #8 seed 2655 (I think they were originally ranked #13, but my memory is foggy), and went on to win the regional along with 832. That was ridiculous.

A few weeks later (also 09), we were picked by the #3 seed at Palmetto and won with them. The #3 seed (1771) was actually the #1 seed we had beaten earlier at Peachtree, while the #1 seed at Palmetto was a rookie team with box on wheels that could only deliver the super moon-rock thing (supercell? I can't remember the official name) and was rejected five or six times during first-round alliance selections.

On the flip side, the two regionals we've attended so far this year (Alamo and Peachtree), the #1 seeded alliance has won both.

MagiChau
03-27-2011, 08:53 PM
I would expect Michigan State Championship to be that way, however I would expect the National Championship to be slightly less so since so many teams attend because they can pay the fee without having to qualify based on robot quality (not that there's anything wrong with that system - I'm just saying).

Divisions are pretty big. Would be pretty hard making a division without more than 2-4 power houses.

Tom Line
03-27-2011, 09:02 PM
Divisions are pretty big. Would be pretty hard making a division without more than 2-4 power houses.

Yep, you're right on that count. Plus, with the 3 weeks between our state champ and the worlds, I'm sure a whole lot of teams will be working to get minibots going.

I hope I'm wrong. I'd love to see a whole series of upsets at Nationals.

Peyton Yeung
03-27-2011, 09:12 PM
What I've noticed is this: In the past couple seasons, two good robots could hold up an alliance and win a match. The third one could play some very effective D (and some finals matches have been decided by how good the third robot is at playing defense) but especially in the quarters and semis the overall firepower of the top two robots in the top two alliances is too much for the others.

This perhaps is a side effect of FIRST's decision to design really offense-oriented games since 2007. That year was crazy: an alliance could score 256 points in one match and 0 the next, all depending on how much defense was played against them. Rack 'n Roll was, in my opinion, the only game where three good robots could beat two great robots and one not so great robot, which resulted in a lot of 8 over 1 upsets. This phenomenon was augmented by the fact that since defense could shut down many offensive teams, the best teams often would not seed first. Even when they did, they often lost if the regional or division was stacked enough to provide power to the #8 alliance.

Look at the TBA results for GLR and West Michigan... more wins for blue than red in the elims. Oh look... 1114 and 67 lost in the semis due to amazing defense and the fact that 57's robot could not provide the defense necessary to stop the opponents from scoring. In 2007, none of the #1 alliances at Champs escaped the divisions and reached Einstein. The #8 alliance of 190, 987, and 177 won in the finals. This could be interpreted as proving my point that 2007 was the only recent year where the #8 alliance could be the best alliance at an event.

However, back then there was this huge discussion about how overpowered defense was in FIRST and how boring it was to watch robots bump into each other instead of score. There were also instances where teams played defense that was too rough (http://www.chiefdelphi.com/forums/showthread.php?t=56908) and complaints about how the serpentine draft gives an advantage to the #8 alliance and should be done away with. Perhaps as a result, FIRST has designed games in recent years to be based on offense, so the good teams can seed high in qualifications and be less hindered by defense in the elims. These offense-powered games in recent years have given the #1 alliance more of a chance to dominate a competition.

I think that in this game defense as well as minibots are one of the greatest factors in who wins elimination matches. For example at our past regional (Midwest) The number 1 seed alliance chose the second seed alliance and dominated the competition. The only alliance to beat them once was our alliance (the # 4 alliance) and that was due mostly by our bots ability to completely shut down wildstang's minbot from reaching the tower in the first match. Sadly we lost the next 2 matches to that alliance because they adapted to our defense and won the minibot races.

Also in our first regional this year (Boilermaker) the number 1 seeded team chose the number 2 seeded team and they completely shut destroyed every other alliance because no one could stop them from scoring or deploying their minibots (the fastest at the event).

ttldomination
03-27-2011, 09:15 PM
I think this is partially due to the fact that we've seen this game not too long ago.

Teams that had people around in 2007 REALLY knew what to expect. They designed their robots to be faster, stronger, more agile, and smarter than how they were in '07. Which is why I think we see this large gap between the teams that really can and the ones that are able to.

- Sunny

Akash Rastogi
03-27-2011, 09:37 PM
This isn't always true. It ONLY makes sense if the ranking system is an accurate measure of robot performance, which it never is. W-T-L systems, or even any systems, don't take into account robot improvement, lucky or unlucky qualification pairings, or a number of other factors..

Hence why he said statistically...

548swimmer
03-27-2011, 10:04 PM
This isn't always true. It ONLY makes sense if the ranking system is an accurate measure of robot performance, which it never is. W-T-L systems, or even any systems, don't take into account robot improvement, lucky or unlucky qualification pairings, or a number of other factors..

I completely agree. Our team has a sort of "Saturday magic" that comes from ironing out all of the kinks during Friday and Saturday morning. It has worked quite well, resulting in a district victory and a second place (great set of finals matches 2337).

Thomas DeSilva
03-27-2011, 11:40 PM
This year at the Autodesk Portland regional, the Eighth seed beat the first seed after 3 ridiculously close matches, before losing to the fourth seed Alliance, which went on to win the regional. It was an amazing match to watch.
We really should have called our timeout so 2046 could have checked their arm. D:

But yeah, from what I've seen, this year's seed rankings have been slightly more reflective of a team's merit (which may not have anything to do with this year's game, because it seems that teams with minibots automatically seed high), and so it would make sense for the top-seed alliance to win.

SamMullen
03-28-2011, 12:35 AM
We really should have called our timeout so 2046 could have checked their arm. D:

But yeah, from what I've seen, this year's seed rankings have been slightly more reflective of a team's merit (which may not have anything to do with this year's game, because it seems that teams with minibots automatically seed high), and so it would make sense for the top-seed alliance to win.

I'd wondered what happened there. That sucks, their arm breaking during finals. Even with everyone working though, it was still a very close match. Every team there was good, and I think all of them had minibots, which like you said, was a real determining factor in the quals.

Kevin Sevcik
03-28-2011, 06:53 AM
Look at the TBA results for GLR and West Michigan... more wins for blue than red in the elims. Oh look... 1114 and 67 lost in the semis due to amazing defense and the fact that 57's robot could not provide the defense necessary to stop the opponents from scoring. In 2007, none of the #1 alliances at Champs escaped the divisions and reached Einstein. The #8 alliance of 190, 987, and 177 won in the finals. This could be interpreted as proving my point that 2007 was the only recent year where the #8 alliance could be the best alliance at an event.
*polite cough* I hate to break it to you, but 2007 GLR is a better example of luck playing into the finals than anything else. 57 got bitten by the banebot curse Thursday and Friday and didn't have working ramps till Saturday morning. At which point the worked flawlessly for the rest of the regional. 1114 took notice and we were a stellar darkhorse 3rd pick for defnese and ramps. Ask 118 if we could play defense at Lone Star. Anyways, we were flustered at having such a huge chance at a win and a bit disorganized. We ended up playing semi 1 with a nearly dead battery, which left us a twitching mess. Diagnosing that took me a lot longer than it should have, cause who would figure that? So we finally figured it out and by then they wanted us on the field. We put on a battery strap and sent the robot out without a rear bumper because we didn't want to "waste" a timeout. Turned out the bumper was doing most of the battery securing, and when someone rammed us, physics sent the battery flying out the back of the robot and we were dead a second match. I count that as one the single most embarrassing moment of my FIRST career, because we honestly would have owned that regional if I'd just asked for that timeout or monitored battery charging a little more closely.

On the other hand, man is that an instructive story to tell at workshops.

JABot67
03-28-2011, 07:03 AM
*polite cough* I hate to break it to you, but 2007 GLR is a better example of luck playing into the finals than anything else. 57 got bitten by the banebot curse Thursday and Friday and didn't have working ramps till Saturday morning. At which point the worked flawlessly for the rest of the regional. 1114 took notice and we were a stellar darkhorse 3rd pick for defnese and ramps. Ask 118 if we could play defense at Lone Star. Anyways, we were flustered at having such a huge chance at a win and a bit disorganized. We ended up playing semi 1 with a nearly dead battery, which left us a twitching mess. Diagnosing that took me a lot longer than it should have, cause who would figure that? So we finally figured it out and by then they wanted us on the field. We put on a battery strap and sent the robot out without a rear bumper because we didn't want to "waste" a timeout. Turned out the bumper was doing most of the battery securing, and when someone rammed us, physics sent the battery flying out the back of the robot and we were dead a second match. I count that as one the single most embarrassing moment of my FIRST career, because we honestly would have owned that regional if I'd just asked for that timeout or monitored battery charging a little more closely.

On the other hand, man is that an instructive story to tell at workshops.

Okay, you are right. 57 was a beast at defense that year, and we might have been able to win GLR had your robot been working correctly in the semis. However, this just proves how important defense was that year (we couldn't win without you), and how lucky we were to get a great defense and ramp bot as the 16th pick, although it didn't work out in the end.

martin417
03-28-2011, 09:01 AM
From the events I have watched, the rankings at the end of the quals this year more closely represent the actual ability of the teams to play the game. In the past, this has not been the case. I remember in 2009 at palmetto, late in the quals, there was one team that had not yet placed a robot on the field (or even been inspected) and were ranked as the #1 seed. They later fell a few places in the rankings, but were still highly ranked at the end of quals. This year, better robots and teams tended to be highly ranked, and teams that were not as effective were ranked lower.

That might partially be due to the rule change that will not allow teams that are not inspected to get the points for a win by the alliance.

nikeairmancurry
03-28-2011, 10:15 AM
No ranking system is perfect... Espeically while first plays 3 vs 3... There will always be robots riding coat tails of other robots... If the game was 1 v 1, you'd have a better rankings are the end of a event, but this would a very bad idea to do...

Alan Anderson
03-28-2011, 10:37 AM
The title of this thread is 1st Seeds Win. That's very nearly a tautology. The underlying fact is that the team fielding the winningest robot tends to be the #1 seed.

Racer26
03-28-2011, 10:54 AM
Its happened at both Canadian regionals since at least 2006.

Some combination of 1503, 1114, 2056, and 2609 have been #1 seed, and #1 seed's first pick at every Waterloo and GTR since 2006. *Except 2006 GTR

2006 WAT: 1114 seeds #1, picks 1503, champions
2006 GTR: I cant quite tell exactly because I can't find the Elimination results on usfirst.org, according to Karthik, 1114 seeded #1, picked 1503 It doesn't make sense that 229 and 703 could have seeded higher and not broken up an 1114/1503 alliance. I'm assuming the missing results is due to the odd way eliminations was handled at this SUPER regional. There were 12 alliance captains. - 1114/1503 champions.
2007 WAT: 1114 seeds #1, picks 2056, champions
2007 GTR: 2056 seeds #1 (highest rookie seed), picks 1114, champions
2008 WAT: 2056 seeds #1, picks 1114, champions
2008 GTR: 1114 seeds #1, picks 2056, champions
2009 WAT: 2609 seeds #1, picks 2056, champions
2009 GTR: 2056 seeds #1, picks 1114, champions
2010 WAT: 1114 seeds #1, picks 2056, champions
2010 GTR: 1114 seeds #1, picks 2056, champions
2011 WAT: 1114 seeds #1, picks 2056, champions

Jim Zondag
03-28-2011, 10:56 AM
It is pretty hard to win if you are not in the top 2. The past 4 years of combined results are in the attached chart. More than 80% of the time, the winners are one of the top 2 alliances.
As Al said above, this is because the best teams seed highest. This means that the seeding system works properly.

TRWSHSHLX
03-28-2011, 11:36 AM
There are a few components to upsets in regionals. Since the qualifying rounds schedule is totally random sometimes a good team might be put against another good team but with better alliance partner and lose those matches. That'd cause a good team to be ranked lower than they really should.
Secondly there are always the problems of debugging. Like some posts mentioned, some teams do not have all the bugs worked out until the elimination rounds. Those teams are usually overlooked but if picked, it can be a huge factor.
And lastly, the ranking system that FIRST uses to rank the teams are purely based on offense. The GDC encourages offense and an offensive robot or a team that's always with an offensive robot (not likely) will get really high ranked. However, there's no mention of defense in the ranking system what so ever. If a robot is a mostly defensive robot, it will most likely rank relatively low and sometimes they're overlooked but can be another major game changer because in elimination rounds, it's the point difference between alliances that matters, not as much as you can score, like in qualifying rounds.
All in all, a successful alliance will have both offense and defense. And the alliance that can execute always wins.

nikeairmancurry
03-28-2011, 11:46 AM
It is pretty hard to win if you are not in the top 2. The past 4 years of combined results are in the attached chart. More than 80% of the time, the winners are one of the top 2 alliances.
As Al said above, this is because the best teams seed highest. This means that the seeding system works properly.

Thats why you one of the best Jim, I always love your charts... Perfect way, to show the spread the winners of events...

Kett Captains
04-10-2011, 12:23 AM
An upset just happened this weekend at the Michigan State Championship. The 8th seeded alliance, (74, 548, 3098), beat the 1st seeded alliance, (217, 469, 201). Seems like teams definately overlook performance on saturdays before elimination. :D

DonRotolo
04-10-2011, 12:25 AM
Well, the #1 seed at Virginia also didn't win this weekend.

mwilbur
04-10-2011, 10:58 AM
Well, the #1 seed at Virginia also didn't win this weekend.

The #1 seed at Virginia didn't win this weekend, but the BEST alliance DID. Kudos to team 25 for making great selections. We knew that we were going to have to be 10 points up going into minibot deployment with your super fast minibot on the field, but we didn't manage to pull it off. A last minute pneumatics leak on our robot right before the start of the second finals match didn't help, but it still would have been too close for comfort had that not happened. The competition ranking system is good for a ballpark idea as to which teams are doing the best, but the scouting part of it is critical to put the best alliance together.

TEE
04-10-2011, 12:35 PM
An upset just happened this weekend at the Michigan State Championship. The 8th seeded alliance, (74, 548, 3098), beat the 1st seeded alliance, (217, 469, 201). Seems like teams definately overlook performance on saturdays before elimination. :D

Goes to show the intensity of MSC...

For those who didn't watch, 217, 469 and 201 would have won the second match if they got a minibot up the pole for 3rd place, and in the third match, 3098 stopped 469 from deploying (that was the part of strategy 217, 469 and 201 missed, or simply didn't execute: defending against minibots), and 469 had our alliance's fastest minibot. The tube-scoring was really close in all three matches.

On a different note, I personally was really surprised that 548 wasn't chosen sooner... I expected them to be picked by one of the first 3 or 4 alliances.

XaulZan11
04-10-2011, 12:49 PM
The tube-scoring was really close in all three matches.

Tube scoring was close in most of the elimination matches, which is not that surprising. My biggest complaint with the game is how being an amazing tube scoring alliance is not that big of an advantage over a good tube scoring alliance. If you score 6 logos while the opponent gets 4, you only get 12 more points. The decreasing marginal returns to tube scoring makes the game a little too easy strategically; no longer are you having the tough decision to place one more tube or go to endgame, like you did in 2007 (which also had spoilers).

This was really evident in the elminations at MSC. Since both alliances could consistently and easily score 3-4 logos, most matches came down to autonomous and minibots. If you had a significant disadvantage in auto (like 3-1), you needed to get first and second place in the minibot race to make up those 24 points. 469 just picked a really bad time to miss their auto and minibot in the final 2 quarterfinal matches (I believe they were 12/13 on each before missing both in back to back matches). In my opinion, that was the deciding factor. When the top pick cannot do the two most important things, the 8 seed has a chance.

DonRotolo
04-10-2011, 05:07 PM
The competition ranking system is good for a ballpark idea as to which teams are doing the best, but the scouting part of it is critical to put the best alliance together.
Bingo: That's the point of the thread. Perhaps the ranking system is not a perfect indicator (and never will be), but as you said, it's not too far off.

jckwik
04-10-2011, 10:02 PM
The ranking system, when a win-loss record, does not do justice to a teams actual ability, and occasionally will be very wrong. For example, take 3173.

Luck during qualification rounds does matter, and we found that out the hard way at Boston this weekend. Out of the 10 qualification matches we were the only team to score on our alliance 7 out of 10 times! Despite that fact we were still 6-4, but not high enough to be in the top eight, despite having one of the best robots at the regional (statistics-wise). The ranking system, however, doesn't do justice when a very good team gets poor alliance partners in qualification, and that's the one downside to a purely W-L system.

However, don't take this the wrong way and say that I want something like last years system, either. Last year was extremely wrong, as we somehow got the third seed at FLR with an absolutely terrible bot that could do nothing but score goals (but needed backup).

So the ranking system is not perfect, but I disagree that it's not too far off. This year, at least, the system should have been different.

548swimmer
04-10-2011, 10:13 PM
On a different note, I personally was really surprised that 548 wasn't chosen sooner... I expected them to be picked by one of the first 3 or 4 alliances.
I think this is because we didn't have a successful deployment during any of our three qualifying matches on Saturday. The first two failed, and we didn't get the chance to deploy in the third match.