2015 TRR Rules Changes

Hello Chief Delphi!

We just posted the 2015 Texas Robot Roundup rules changes to the teams, and figured we would share them with the broader community. We think we came up with a pretty interesting twist to the game that doesn’t detract from existing team capabilities.

For the 2015 Texas Robot Roundup, we’ve decided to make a few changes to the game rules to reduce undue penalties, provide for more interesting gameplay, and promote coopertition. As a result, we are introducing our variant of Recycle Rush, which we call Recycle Rush Assist.


In section and all sections following, when referring to scoring TOTES on a SCORING PLATFORM during teleop, change references to “Grey TOTE” to “Grey or Yellow TOTE”.

Amend <G18>, <G23>, and <G24> to add the phrase “If while attempting to score totes as part of a COOPERTITION STACK or COOPERTITION SET, no violation” to the description of the penalty associated with each violation.

We will not be strictly enforcing the setup rules. Please set up your robot in a timely fashion. Field staff will give you a reminder to complete setup. If you do not heed this reminder, you may be penalized. If you would like to make preparations with your robot before placing it on the field that cause the robot to exceed the transport configuration, that will generally be tolerated. However, unsafe operations or unsafe transport of the robot will cause event staff to remind you of the need to be safe and considerate of your fellow competitors. Repeated violations may result in penalties for the offending teams.

Alliances for the elimination tournament shall consist of 4 teams each. The picking order will be 1-8, 8-1, 8-1. Aside from this change in the third robot picking order, Alliance Selection and the Elimination Tournament shall be conducted in accordance with Section 5.6 of the 2015 FRC Game Manual.

There will be no formal inspection process at TRR. Robots obviously out of compliance with the rules will be asked to correct any noted problems before competing by event staff. An additional 5 pounds of weight per robot will be allowed.

Adding the assist concept:

Two of the RECYCLING CONTAINERS on the center step will be designated as ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINERS. The ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINERS will be denoted by two strips of bright orange gaffer’s tape. The strips will be 2” wide and shall run around the circumference of the container, with the bottom edge of one strip located 6” above the bottom of the container and the top edge of the second strip located 6” from the bottom of the handle.

An ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER counts as a RECYCLING CONTAINER in all respects. However, the value of the RECYCLING CONTAINER points for a STACK including an ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER is modified based on the number of robots that POSSESS the ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER. If one robot possesses the container prior to it being scored, then it is worth 4 points per level. If two robots possess the container prior to it being scored, then is is worth 6 points per level. If three robots possess the container prior to it being scored, then it is worth 8 points per level.

For purposes of defining POSSESSION of an ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER, refer to G12, bullets A and B of the 2014 FRC Game Manual that define “carrying” and “herding”. Additionally, the act of a robot pulling the ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER off of the STEP shall be explicitly defined as POSSESSING the ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER.

Prior to the start of the match, one of the recycling containers on each side of the step will be replaced by an ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER, determined randomly. The remaining two positions for RECYCLING CONTAINERS on the step will be occupied by regular RECYCLING CONTAINERS. The ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINERS and RECYCLING CONTAINERS will be placed as teams are setting up their robots on the field.

To provide each ALLIANCE an exclusive opportunity to obtain an ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER, we are adding a rule. During Autonomous, ALLIANCES may not contact the ASSIST RECYCLING CONTAINER and RECYCLING CONTAINER on the left side of the step, from the viewpoint of that ALLIANCE’S drivers in their respective ALLIANCE STATION. (i.e. An alliance may attempt to retrieve the containers on the right side of the step from their drivers’ point of view, but shall not make contact with the containers on the left side of the step from their drivers’ point of view.) Violation: If first violation, YELLOW CARD. Subsequent violations RED CARD. For all violations, offending robot(s) is(are) DISABLED.

During Teleop, the rules regarding contact of items on the step remain as written in the 2015 FRC Game Manual, as amended above.

Reconfiguring the Field:

8 totes from each ALLIANCE’S LANDFILL will be placed corresponding ALLIANCE STATION. These will be located in the ALLIANCE STATION as an additional stack of four TOTES on each side of the ALLIANCE STATION. The new stack will be located on the driver station side of the stack located nearest to the bin holding the litter in each alliance station.

And here’s the document we actually shared with teams:

this assist thing is interesting: how will you record it in a way that is easily viewable to drivers and spectators?

This is interesting. What was the reasoning for change? Rearranging the landfill would mess with some teams’ can grabbing devices. Also, teams very rarely empty the HP Stations anyway; even then, why remove the totes in the landfill rather than just add to the HP stations?

I don’t understand the landfill change either. Seems like it hurts the few landfill bots that used to be able to make 3 x 6 stacks and helps the tether bots. Not sure why you would change the game like that.

I’m also very confused how the assists will be recorded and how much time it will take to add the additional points to the score. I’m guessing since its always two points they will just add more tote points but that will take some time after each match to get right.

I’m also surprised they didn’t change the chute/human player/noodle rules at all. The driver station is going to be just as annoying as it was during the regular season (tote moving in auto, not noodling over the wall in the last 20 secs, etc.)

Being on the rules committee, I’m sorry I didn’t answer this sooner, but I can’t begin to tell you how busy my Summer has been.

The landfill was changed to give more maneuvering space for teams to grab from the landfill, attempting coop ,as well as to make it easier for teams attempting to get cans off the step. From what I saw of the matches (I’ll admit I don’t have any data to back it up), TRR seemed to play out that way.

I’ll also admit now after the event that I was pushing for another change to the rules that didn’t get much support, but that I deep down inside felt would have made the event more fun. I wanted to give teams the option to field a 2014 robot and give each alliance one yoga ball and permission to launch it across the field to topple stacks, as well as permission to pick up the opposing ball and serve it back.

Now I know this sounds ridiculous, but if you’ve ever seen my team’s robots, you’ll know that in my book, ridiculous trumps boring any day.

Be sure to thank everyone else on the rules committee for keeping TRR respectable LoL