Game Elements and Game-play Ideas Thread

Post all of your ideas for game elements, game-play concepts and/or complete game challenges that you would like to see in the 2012 or future FIRST robotics games. Maybe someone from FIRST GDC will see it, maybe not.

Please keep this thread to what you want to see, not rumors or theories as to what you believe the game will be. For 2012 game rumors and theories, check out this thread instead:

I’ll start off with this concept I’ve had for a while and was suggested in the thread I linked to.

Image from

As I’ve been saying for a few years I want a bulk item that will give us a new challange. Something small like racket balls, tennis balls, softballs which will drastically change handeling mechanisms from what we do now.

I would even go for sand, or marbles.

Footballs. Frisbees. Both are game pieces we haven’t had to deal with before in FRC.

Ending the Apocalypse?

Im just hoping for something big like the track balls.

I would love to see a game with an autonomous period similar to logomotion … in that there is a scoring piece/action solely for autonomous that is relatively easy to perform (ie tracking lines). This was the first year in possibly forever that my team scored in autonomous (partly due to the specific benefit from ubertubes).

Those bean bag chairs they used in the volunteer lounge in St. Louis would make great game pieces.

4 teams per alliance. One robot has to remain off the field at all times, in some kind of “pit area” or the like, but each of the 4 robots has to be on the field for at least a certain amount of time.

Until they break. If one of those bean bags breaks, we’d have to vacuum the floor because of all those cushion beans. Good idea though. Maybe if there was a much tougher ‘skin’ for the bean bags.

Maybe the beans could be part of the floor surface.

Here’s mine (I already put it in the 2012 rumor thread):

6 robots on the field. 4 mobile goals, similar in design to the 2004 ones (or 2001). Two goals start on each side of center; each alliance starts touching its own driver station.

The center of the field has “terrain”–a shallow ramp on a pivot to act as a teeter-totter. Over the ramp is a large-ish arch of steel pipe. Let’s call it 10’ high at the top. The ramp is divided into a red zone and a blue zone (may also be split in 2-4 segments, each marked for one alliance or the other); the arch is marked into point zones.

On the sides of the fields there are minibot tracks, 2 per alliance (1 track per side of the field). The tracks on each side meet at midfield.

At dead center on both sides, there is a stand holding two bonus balls. When removed during autonomous, the balls trigger an avalanche of lower-score balls onto the field.

Also on the field are three trackball-sized “doubler” balls. They start on the balanced ramp. (Field resetters, please keep your rotten tomatoes in hand for now. I’m not done yet.)

There is a line on each side of the field at the quarter-field mark.

The Game
In autonomous period, robots deploy their minibots onto their alliance’s tracks. The minibots race to trigger the balls, or block their opponents from doing the same. Robots may also attempt to trigger the flood. Robots may not deploy their minibots past the line at 1/4 field.

Teleop begins. Robots attempt to fill the mobile goals and get them into their own half of the field, in the area between the ramp and the 1/4-field line. Robots and humans collaborate to fill their goals–but robots may only release the balls from below the 4’ mark, and the goals are 5’ high. Robots may also feed the humans. Doublers may be placed on top of the goals. At the 1-minute mark, any balls that haven’t already dropped come flooding in.

For the end game, robots attempt to balance the bridge with goals in their zone, or hang on the arch. This will require teamwork between alliances, and/or a game of chicken (who’s letting go first?).

Each ball in an owned goal (between 1/2 and 1/4 field, or on the ramp in your zone) is worth 5 points; having the goal owned is 10 points. The ball score is doubled by a doubler ball on top of the goal; having the goal on a balanced ramp doubles any score for both the goal and the balls, doubler included.

Each robot on the arch and not touching the ground will receive points based on the lowest-value contacted scoring zone; the maximum-point zone is not the one at the top of the arch, but the ones right next to it. Robots on the ramps score 10 points.

Penalties: Penalties are 5 points apiece; pinning is 3 penalties; intentional tipping is a red card, disablement, and 2 penalties. Descoring is 10 penalties and a yellow card for the first offense; the second draws a red card and 10 penalties.

I have no idea what I created, but I had some free time so I made this up. I didn’t have any real rules involved but here is a frisbee field. On the side you can see I have a place for Human players.

Other Images of the Field:

Could you elaborate on this field a little more? It looks really nice. Do you score by throwing Frisbees in to the little troths on the ends of the field?

Yep. The object is to shoot the frisbees into your high goal. However you can only score when you are within your alliance zone on the field. You may run around and pick up frisbees in the center of the field, or COURT, however only two robots per alliance are allowed in the COURT at a time.

The Frisbees themselves have a green dot on their front and back so robots can find them in the field and pick them up with specialized mechanisms.

End of the game might have something relating to the number of frisbees you are holding at a certain height, like Double Trouble.

Points would be something like, 4 for a frisbee scored in the goal and 1 point for a frisbee on the floor in your half-circle on the court. If it’s outside the line, it won’t count. And 12 or 16 points for some big end game bonus.

I would really love to hang from a arch one of these years.

I would love to see pool noodles cut into 1ft segments.
Other cool objects… I got my hands on one of the 148 prank playhouse balls. They are suprisingly hard to crush and very light. They would make a cool game object.

Quoting myself from the 2012 Game thread:

*"I have an idea for a awesome endgame:

Giant arch made of 1.75" steel tubing (used for the towers of '10 and the minibot towers '11).

This giant arch spans the width of the playing field in the middle of the field reaching at least 12 ft high. robots get points for hanging off of the arch and not touching the ground. However, more points are awarded for being higher on the arch. One could go about it like the minibots this year with point values for being the highest to lowest or just have markings on the arch with “zones” which have certain hanging values.

Either way, it would be an amazing endgame to watch. Robots battling for the center position… 2004 but better?

Eh, thats all I’ve got for now, Bryan"*

The more I think about this endgame, the more amazing I think it would be.

BEST game piece ever. And teams can build them!

What about a game that has two different game pieces that you have to put together. Maybe PVC pipes with magnets on the end that you have to slide into a hole and attach it to a piece that has another magnet that is in the hole. Then pull it back out and place it somewhere else, maybe on a steel scoring plate. Each PVC pipe is a point, but if it has the second piece on it it is worth 3 points.

'nuff said. '10 spin off. Sorta.

How about one of you brainiacs out there design a game based on Lacrosse? Nerf balls as game pieces with passing and scoring? Maybe 5 on 5 with smaller bots? I would be interested in what you all come up with. :cool:



The game is played on a 27’x54’ field. Two alliances with five robotics teams each face off in each match. Each robot must start the game within a 2’x2’x3’ starting position. Once the game begins, robots may extend outward to any length and size, but at no time may a robot or its mechanisms rise higher than 3’.

Here is a view of the game field:

Two GOALS sit within the playing field, and are marked red and blue by their bumpers. Red alliance will attempt to score in the Red bumper GOAL and Blue alliance in the Blue bumper GOAL.

In the corners of the field are ALLIANCE ZONES, two for each alliance. Only Red Alliance robots are allowed to move within the Red ALLIANCE ZONES, and only Blue alliance robots are allowed to move within the Blue ALLIANCE ZONES.

When ready to play the match, alliances may set their robot anywhere on their ALLIANCE ZONE side of the field, but can not have their robot move past the white line splitting the field in half, or the center circle. At least one robot of each alliance must be standing over the back white line of their half of the field.


Five yellow POWER BALLS are set in the field on their specific spots. When Autonomous mode begins, teams will attempt to grab and score the POWER BALLS into their GOAL.

The match begins with a 15 second autonomous mode. After the autonomous mode, teams are awarded points and the two minute tele-operated mode begins.

Every 15 seconds pf the 2 minute match, four white NORMAL BALLS enter the field by the Field Crew - one in each ALLIANCE ZONE.


In the last few seconds, alliance robots may run their robots into the Alliance Zones for bonus points. Each robot touching only the colored carpet and/or white line and not the green field carpet, will earn the alliance bonus points.

After the match, teams are awarded points for their goals they made.

-> 3 points for each scored POWER BALL in autonomous mode.
-> Bonus 3 points for scoring more POWER BALLS than the opponent in Autonomous mode. If both teams tie, neither get the bonus.

-> 2 points for each scored NORMAL BALL.
-> 2 points for each scored POWER BALL in Tele-operated mode.
-> Bonus 2 points for having one or two robots in the alliance zone at the end of the match, 6 points for having three or four robots, and 12 points for having all five robots.

Enjoy. Discuss.