Flood strategy

Our team had a good discussion about this. In the past teams have looked for a way to starve the opponent of game pieces. That is certainly not going to happen this year.

What caught our attention is the placing the PCs in the window behind the alliance wall for everyone to see and the rule of having 15 PCs max.

We didn’t know what to call it other than flooding the opponent.

What do you think is the likelihood of “flooding” or scoring quickly enough that the opponent is forced to cycle PCs back to the field before they are ready? Possibly giving you easy access to PCs without crossing the field.


Counter strategy: Have a defensive robot that can feed directly from the loading station and shoot balls into your trench.

If you are better than them? High.

However, all it takes to thwart you and rapidly increase your cycle times is for them to transport the power cells across the field, even if they dont score them. Then you will have to collect from an unprotected zone.

I agree there are strategies to stop this, but how much attention should this receive?

Hard to tell until the game has been played.

There may be successful double defence alliances, one robot stopping the shooter, and one stopping the ball ferrying defense bot, leaving the final robot to shoot and pick up balls from the enemy loading zone.

But maybe the meta is 3 shooter bots… Who knows?


That would mean the defensive robot needs to be able to collect from floor. I didn’t see a rule saying HP must reload from the top, they can drop it down on ground

it could be a viable strategy in elims, but also if your alliance is putting all of its resources into flooding the opponent… The opponent can just do the same to you…

This could lead to a new noodle agreement where alliances agree to feed each other the required power cells to gain RP… It is this years coopertition element lol

This has been lightly discussed here

In this game, robots playing defence will be mostly stay within your own sector. Your team controls when you return the balls your opponent scores, so if you call a defensive bot to take these balls, you, not your opponents, are in control of the loading station.

No your team does not. As soon as you accumulate 15 PC you must start feeding PC to the FIELD. Any obvious delays will trigger H9. H9 specifies “immediately”. You get to choose which chute you feed them out of but that is it.

I’m referring to a situation where the human players perceive that they are in danger of this rule (and perhaps have already been forced to return a few), but are not currently in violation.

A defensive bot trying to relieve their player station is more or less a protected action, per G10/11.

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It is certainly a possibility, but there are some things to remember:

  1. It will not normally come into play immediately after Auto, since the maximum possible number of PCs in the player station at that time would be 14 (the 5 originals and the 9 shot into the goals by the opposing robots.) The only way this changes is if robots manage to pick up PCs midfield during Auto and still shoot effectively, which will be very difficult in 15 seconds. So it’s unlikely that an alliance would feed PCs onto the field until their own robots get back to their end of the field.
  2. The nature of cycling is likely to mean that an alliance has at least one robot near the loading chutes most of the time and thus able to grab any PCs put onto the field, even if they aren’t employing the defensive robot strategy outlined above.
  3. There are other PCs close at hand in the generator and trenches during the match that will (at least initially) divert robots looking to collect them. The ones in the trenches especially will be attractive given the protected nature of the trench.

None of this implies that a flood strategy won’t work and won’t happen, but we’ll need to see whether it’s a common or unusual occurrence due to these other factors. I suspect that it will only come into effect during the latter half of the teleop period before the endgame and will thus have a lesser (but still possibly important) effect on play.

I propose the human player can effectively shut this down.
Couple of things. First, you are not in violation of H9 unit a referee perceives the human player as lagging introducing PC back into the field. The rack is specifically stated as to be used for counting so you know when you may be in violation of H9. The rack holds 14 PC so the human player can hold 1.
So what happens when a robot scores? The HP introduces ONE into the field. How are they to know how many more to introduce? Only by walking to the corral and getting the PC from it do they know how many need to be put back into play.
So they gather the PC from the corral and walk back to the loading station and one by one introduce PC back into the field. Rinse, repeat.

Given the rare(?) case that an alliance scores 9 PCs then collects at least 2 of the 20 PCs available and scores during auto, I wonder how Refs will call it since players cannot retrieve the PCs yet.

I suspect the ruling about reasonable effort made to return PCs is in play here. And brings up another sticking point from last year. What will the refs consider “reasonable effort”?

This may be different at each venue. A ref may only call a ball in hand (or 3 hands for each HP) or they may say “no, you have at least 5 PCs in the corral and are incurring fouls”

Exactly, how many PC are they expected to carry in one arm from the corral to the loading station? Are they expected to run back and forth?

H9 Blue Box talks about expectations if teleop starts with a technical violation of H9.

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I don’t know, and I expect no one but the head refs may know either. :unamused:

I’m sure there will be no violations during Auto, or for a reasonable time afterwards regardless of the number that end up in the goals, for exactly the reasons you cite. We may well get a time ruling on what that “reasonable time” is by the time we hit week 2. But I also don’t think it’s likely to be an issue, since making it happen at all will be somewhere in the Cheezy Poofs zone of sophisticated Auto routines. A very few teams may pull that off, but most will shoot what they have pre-loaded and not get more PCs until after Auto ends.

So based on the layout of the field, it looks to me like the human player can pickup PCs out of the corral during auto since it is behind the auto line. Is there a rule I’m missing or is that allowed? And if so, couldn’t the refs perceive the HP not picking them up in auto be in violation of the rules since they will not be making an effort to place them back in the field?