Animation judging did happen after all. Here’s how it went, for those who’ve yet to go:
No credits are shown. The viewing screen was a TV; animations were never shown on the big screen.
According to the rulebook, animations are cycled all through Thursday, but our Pit Crew was busy on Thursday and never noticed whether this was done or not.
One student per team goes as a judge, on Friday. The time is pretty random, yes, and I don’t think it was ever announced. Since people weren’t all there at the same time, they ran two or three rounds of viewings for the student judges.
The scoring is out of 100 points, broken down into three categories (same as the honorable mentions at Nationals): Content (40pts), Creativity (40pts), and Technical (20pts).
You judge all the animations from your one of the five major regions. For example, team 103 won at Manchester, even though team 103 (or at least their robot) was nowhere near New Hampshire – I believe they were in Virginia or New Jersey or thereabouts. (This seems stupid until you realize that there were maybe twenty animations in our entire region. If three per regional went on to nats, and there were no overlap of winning teams, that’s 12-15 teams per region, which is almost all of them. Just goes to show that the Animation part is way too underpopular.)
Supposedly the scores become available immediately after the Saturday awards ceremony, but nobody there knew the score, and the website for the regional mentions every award BUT the one for Visualization. My team still doesn’t know if we made the top 3 or not yet. Then again, we could have lost here but won at New York or something.
BTW… they didn’t seem to have culled out the DQ’ed teams from the lineup. For example, there was a 2-second bit of a robot with its parts spinning around, located where 69’s animation was supposed to be. And some team used Tool’s “Schism” for their theme, and (I am told) were subsequently DQ’ed, but not until after we’d had to judge it.