Climbing Up and back again

We have come upon an interesting issue with the climbing rules. It seems that nothing requires the robot remain on the tower at the end of the game–scoring is based upon reaching a level of the tower. See rule

Points are awarded for the highest Level achieved for every ALLIANCE ROBOT that CLIMBS its PYRAMID. The Level to which a ROBOT has CLIMBED is determined by the lowest point of the ROBOT (in relation to the FIELD). CLIMB point values and Levels are defined in Figure 3-4.

Emphasis mine. Does this mean that a robot may climb up the tower at the beginning of the game, validate a climb, and have the score count at the end even if they immediately descend?

Also, from the introduction:

Teams earn additional points by CLIMBING their ALLIANCE’S PYRAMID **by **the end of the MATCH.

Emphasis mine. Note the by the end of the match not at the end of the match.

Another relevant rule:

A ROBOT has CLIMBED its PYRAMID if it contacts the PYRAMID in

sequential order (Level 0, 1, 2, 3) during ascent and
no more than two (2) Levels simultaneously.

If a CLIMB is considered unacceptable (e.g. a ROBOT has touched non-adjacent Levels or more than two (2) Levels at a time), a Referee will indicate a rejected CLIMB by turning the offending ROBOT’S PLAYER STATION LED strings yellow. The ROBOT will be ineligible for CLIMB points unless and until it begins a new CLIMB from the floor, Level 0.

Assuming your climb is validated when you reach the top, must you follow the rules when descending (ie, could you go level 0,1,2,3,1,0)?

My suspicion is each ROBOT can only receive points for one CLIMB in a given MATCH, and if the rules don’t explicitly say so somewhere, that it will likely be fixed in a Team Update.

It wouldn’t be very exciting to watch a match consisting of robots playing elevator on the pyramids.

Well they do say that the only points scored are for the highest achieved by a robot so they can’t just jiggle up and down between layers for infinite points.

I have to note that the animation explicitly says that robots must remain there at the end of the game so maybe that was (very sadly) the GDC’s intent.

Another proposed argument against the possibility of climbing up, earning points, and climbing back down is G4:

G4 ROBOTS may only be removed from a PYRAMID under the following conditions:
A. by the TEAM,
B. unpowered,
C. and under the supervision of a FIRST Technical Advisor (FTA), FTA Assistant, Referee, or Field

G4 doesn’t specifically make exceptions for the robot removing itself during the match under its own power, however, I counter this argument with the following quote which implies that a robot may remove itself from the pyramid:

…] begins a new CLIMB from the floor, Level 0

Definitely something they need to clarify, and quick! :confused:

A FAQ question, sure to be addressed in the first Team Update for sure.

From the animation: “Robots can climb up the sides or corners of the pyramid, but they have to remain there as the game ends to collect their bonuses.”

This doesn’t make sense. From the manual, however, it doesn’t state this. Perhaps an update is in the future???

The rules are certainly misleading, however I am trying to understand the advantage of this… The only one I see is if you did it in autonomous mode to get it out of the way and then could focus on scoring discs the rest of the round. But depending on your method, it might waste a lot of time climbing back down safely.

The game animation is not official and shouldn’t be relied upon. here’s my interpretation of why you’re incorrect, but it’s not absolute. The Level to which a ROBOT has CLIMBED is determined by the lowest point of the ROBOT.

3.2.4 Final scores will be assess five seconds after the ARENA timer displays zero or when all elements come to rest, whichever event happens first.

To me, this suggests that that the climb is assessed after the end of the match. I believe the “highest Level” language is because a Level 3 climb also counts as a Level 2 climb and a Level 1 climb, not because of multiple tries. Ask the Q&A.

Just to pull from section 1 of the game manual:

The match ends with robots attempting to climb on pyramids located near the middle of the field.

Emphasis mine.


A level 3 climb cannot count as a level 2 climb (and so on) because the level is determined by the lowest point of the robot.

So, basically you can’t have a “system” attach at level two and pull you up, you have to go one at a time?

The way I see it, yes. You have to go from the floor (Level 0) to level 1. Then before you get to level 2, you have to get up off the floor. And before you get to level 3, you have to get off level 1.

Adding 2 questions to this discussion:

  1. Can you use another robot to assist you in your “climb”?
  2. Is your robot allowed to start inside the pyramid?

The manual states that a robot may support another robot only if one or both are in contact with the pyramid so, like in the animation, one robot may assist another up onto the pyramid.
There is nothing from what I hae seen that restricts where you start your climb so long as you touch the levels in the proper order.

Just as MetalJacket said, and as in the video, that is possible. Team RUSH spent time discussing this, and it appears legal. If you skip Zone 1 in doing so, though, is something we could not determine it’s legality.

Actually, that seems what FIRST is encouraging, especially with including the belay system. There are four basic ways to climb the pyramid. The first is by climbing the pyramid from the inside, using the horizontal rods. The second is by climbing the vertical rods from the inside. The third is by climbing the horizontal rods on the outside, and the fourth is by climbing the vertical rod from the outside. The fourth system seems easiest at first, until you realize that you still have to figure out how to bypass the cross beams in the 1st and 2nd Zones. On the inside, you have four different surfaces you can cling to, though really that’s more like two due to regulations on extensions. Nonetheless, it looks like FIRST is trying to make it easy to climb on the inside, though then you must have a very short bot if you want to get 30 pts, which then poses many engineering challenges.

Good Luck!

The only problem with climbing from the inside is that there is only enough room on the inside for one bot to get to the top.

One benefit from not staying at the level (and scoring) is if the robot falls. Let’s say the bot clears level 3 (abiding by the climbing rules), and the hook breaks, and the bot falls. Technically, it has climbed and earned the level 3 points (no requirement to remain at level 3 at the end of the game). It has also not violated Rule g4 since the removal from the Pyramid is unpowered

That is incorrect because of the game animation and also…

3.2.4 Final scores will be assess five seconds after the ARENA timer displays zero or when all elements come to rest, whichever event happens first.

Bad news if the robot is damaged by the fall.

If you’ve designed the robot to withstand the fall (?) then this strategy might be a violation of G13, since you’ve left the hook behind.

I would argue two things on this.

First, the game animation is NOT the rules. Mr. Dave Lavery, who makes the animations, has said as much himself. (He also has been known to say that the game animation complies with all the rules as much as possible, at the time it is made, but the rules may change without time to make a change in the animation.)

Second, the final score is the score with everything scored. If the score is based on the highest level attained at any point in the game, then it is entirely possible for a robot to attain a Level 3 CLIMB, go back down the pyramid, score some more, and still have the score count. By arguing solely based on that rule’s 2012 (or earlier) equivalent, using your interpretation, I can make a pretty decent case that a VERY large number of matches in the past should have ended at 0-0 or other similar ties because there was no game object traveling into the goals at the end of the match; perhaps most blatantly in 2008.

As far as the original question, I think that the intent was made clear in the animation, but not in the rulebook. In my opinion, the spirit of the rule is that climbing down will not score the points; however, the letter of the rule does not reflect that at this time. Based on past experience of the GDC’s methods, I would expect this to be one of the items addressed in the first update to the rules, without a need for Q&A.