<G24> The opposing ALLIANCE may not interfere with the DEPLOYMENT or climbing of a MINIBOT. Violation: RED CARD
Deployment is defined as the act of positioning a minibot on the tower. Does that involve the approach to the tower? Is it therefore a red card to stop an opposing alliance’s robot from getting to the tower?
As I interpret it: So long as you do not touch the tower, the opposing HOSTBOT is not in contact with the tower whatsovever, AND so long as the opposing MINIBOT or HOSTBOT has not breached the planar vertical cyllinder of the BASE (regardless of any actual contact with the TOWER), then there is no penalty.
You have to fully read the definitions of all three to understand it; <R23> and <R24> should lead you there, so I think it’s fairly clear.
If you pin an opponent’s robot against the outside wall for 2 seconds while not touching their TOWER, then there is no penalty for <G24> or <G23> (even if they make the MINIBOT come out of their HOSTBOT while pinned during endgame, it’s not a DEPLOYMENT as fully defined).
If you pin an opponent’s robot against their tower during endgame, you get a red card.
If you get in the way of an opponent, they push you into their tower, and you simply stay there, you will probably get a red card even though they caused it; this is subjective to what happens next. If you even attempt to move in a way that causes them extra time in getting around you to their tower after they pushed you into it, you will definitely get a red card because at that point you’re touching their tower during endgame and not attempting to get away at all. If you do not move at all, the opponent robot backs away, and you do not get out of the way, you will probably get a red card for touching their TOWER when you have the clear opportunity to NOT touch their tower. If they back away and you chase them, staying in their way, you still might get a red card since you were touching their TOWER before you decided to chase them. Q&A may have further details.
If the opponent has a long arm with their MINIBOT on the end of it, and that arm gets close to the vertical projected cylinder at all (even though their robot is still 2-3 feet away from the BASE), you will be watched – if you’re in contact with them when the arm does break the projected cylinder, you will get a red card.
Suffice it to say, it will be a risky maneuver regardless of the scenario; I would try to avoid situations where you are in the vicinity of their TOWER during ENDGAME at all.
I think EricH has it right… you don’t want to accidentally get a red card! Also, given the nature of protection for minibot and deployment, I’m going to guess that most team’s deployment mechanism and minibot won’t be built to take a beating - hitting them while deploying will likely break something.
Along those same lines, at our last regional last year, someone accidentally hit us while we were lifting ourselves at the end of the match. Yeah, they got penalized appropriately for it… but due to the sudden unexpected impact, and the resulting unbalanced twist, one of the poles we used to get our hook to the top came under much more stress than it was designed for, and broke. We had enough time (and resources on hand) to cut and put on a replacement, but that was the only time we broke one of those poles the entire season.
Build everything to meet the limitations of the stresses that can be imposed on it given the constraints of the game. Over-engineering means added weight, complexity, and problems that you don’t need.