Immediate and necessary rule change!


#23

The only big rule change I would make is to add a bit to G9 saying that if a robot is pushed by a defender onto their opponent’s side while they have a defender, this does not violate G9 so long as they try to get back to their side as soon as possible.


#24

Also, on the topic of C8. It was never alive to begin with. In general it rarely got called unless it was blatantly obvious that was their strategy. I don’t think anybody should be penalized for trying to push people away when they’re trying to line up but at the same time getting pushed should not be a foul. To me calling either G9 or C8 in the majority of the time where a robot gets pushed over is ridiculous and unfair. I would really like a team update on this as soon as possible giving an exemption for when you are pushed over by a defender.


#25

IMO, the best solution that ensures there’s no backlash from offensive or defensive bots (returning from deep in the opposing alliance’s side of the field to shove a scorer out of the way is a legitimate defensive strategy that shouldn’t be penalized) is to redefine what a defensive robot is, and use that definition in rules G9 and G13. Create a new term, maybe DEFENDER, and define it as a robot that has crossed onto the opposing alliance’s side of the field on their own, without external influence, that interacts with the opposing alliance’s robots in any way. The robot ceases to be a DEFENDER when it has returned to its own side of the field and finished contact with any opposing robots for x amount of time, maybe 2 seconds. I understand that this may put unnecessary burden on the refs to scrutinize whether x robot is truly a DEFENDER at any given moment, but the point is to highlight the difference between a robot that’s attempting defense and a robot that ended up looking like it was playing defense when actually trying to play offense. IMO, the spirit of G9 and G13 is that it should only apply to the former, not both, and should be defined as such. No penalties for either alliance for cargo ship blocking, and also hopefully no penalties for a minor line cross while attempting to score on the back of the rocket. Feel free to scrutinize that definition to your heart’s content, it’s the best I could come up with at 2:30 am :slight_smile:

Edit: not G13, whatever rule it is that disallows bots from extending out on defense. Can’t remember the name off the top of my head, probably G10 or something


#26

As you stated, the problem with definitions like that is including intention. There’s often gray areas and inconsistent calls. That’s why I would rather change G9 a bit to include an exemption for robots who were pushed over. It’s much more clear cut when a robot is pushed over and much easier to see if they are driving back rather than trying to judge their intentions. Along with this that definition would remove the penalty for crossing over the line accidentally by yourself. This will probably be a fairly unpopular opinion but I think that should be a penalty. If you accidentally drive onto your opponent’s side I think that should be punished.


#27

Really? I distinctly remember a Q&A in 2016 that contradicted this regarding the secret passage, but I could be wrong.


#28

Hello Tomker,
I totally agree and will be happy to help in anyway to tackle this issue.
It was hard to watch this year’s games due to the violence exhibited on the field. It seems to me that some holes in the rules together with relaxed judging are leading to highly aggressive behaviour.
I wonder if this is what First had in mind when defining its core values.
IMHO some clarifications, new restrictions and better judge training are urgently required.
BTW, this is not restricted to only one district, per the game plays I’ve watched.
My take is that this will only continue to spread if not dealt with asap.
Let me know how else can we assist with this important issue.
Avi
(Mentor, Primo 4586, avisegal@gmail.com)


#29

So, my team 2544, besides having camera issues, has had a decent practice round yesterday including tieing ourselves in our first match since we were the only team on the 2 sides playing. (10-10). But, this is not the problem. The problem was during our second practice match. Since there is no footage, I will describe it as it happened since I am the drive coach. It was about T40 when our only partner and us were by our cargo ship. We were the red alliance and was behind by about 15 points. Then comes along 6490 from the blue alliance which was wearing red bumpers. They proceeded to supposedly play “defense”. We start to back away from them when they drive full speed into us, causing our bumpers to go on top of theirs. So then we we’re on the back of their robot which has an angled plate for their control system. They then stop for about 3 seconds, Then they PROCEEDED TO DRIVE BACKWARDS INTO OUR ROBOT CAUSING THE ROBOT TO FLIP/FALL OVER SLOWLY, THEN QUICKLY after our center of mass was past the tipping point. They then just leave to go back to their side of the field. It was an instant red card for them IN A PRACTICE MATCH. And to make matters worse, we had some minor damage and wiring issues that were almost close to permanent. We mostly fixed it. When we talked about this to our alliance parter, they said that they are known to do this all the time each year. And, no one from that team has come forward to appoligise or to even check up with us. Disrespectful. Truely disrespectful. The rules will not stop them from doing this. The event we are playing at is Finger Lakes Regional.


#30

Hi,
It may be helpful if people will upload some clips with examples of such possible aggressive / disturbing behaviour on the field which we rather not see.
I will stress that the aim is not to point any fingers but rather to demonstrate the possible confusion created with the current rules and judging process.

For example:
Clip: https://clips.twitch.tv/RacyCoweringChimpanzeeChocolateRain
Possible disturbing behaviours:

  • red possibly pushes blue over middle line to generate foul for blue alliance
  • red possibly pushes blue over cargo to generate foul for blue alliance
  • red possibly pushes blue again over middle line to generate foul for blue alliance

Disclaimer: as I am not a mind reader, I’m not stating that any of the above is done on purpose nor am I pointing finger to any specific group or alliance etc.
Nonetheless, IMHO, better rules and better judging should be put in place asap if we as a community feel that such clips should not dominate our game this year.

I encourage other people to upload specific clips with examples. This may draw the attention of relevant people and possibly lead to a desired change.

Avi.


#31

Seemed clear to me.
Red pushed blue over the mid for correct blue foul. Blue’s defense bot played too deep to react in time.

Blue started driving over the cargo first for a blue foul.

Red pushes blue over the mid again for a correct blue foul. Blue’s defence bot did not react though was able to.


#32

I am being lazy here, but I think that in 2016 or in 2017 there was actually a zone rule that stipulated the C8-equivalent rule was excluded when considering whether the zone rule was violated.

None of this is to say that C8 shouldn’t be re-evaluated via a team update. Yet the ISR#4 videos show refereeing that was consistent with the expectations from recent years.

I think this year C8 appears to be a more pronounced problem than in the past because more teams opted to do Slide Drive or Mecanum. Historically, both of those drives were seen as very large liabilities due to susceptibility to defense.


#33

Talking about this problem here probably won’t get much done. Wouldn’t it be neat if someone could pull a John Oliver and set up a web form that will let you just enter your name and team number and send the email to first?

Contact Link:
https://www.firstinspires.org/about/contact-us

FIRST team email:
FIRSTRoboticsCompetition@firstinspires.org

Form Letter:
To whom it may concern,

The current application of rule G9 in FRC events is broken. FIRST maintains that Gracious Professionalism is one of its core tenets. Yet the interpretation of G9, where a member of one alliance can force the other alliance to take multiple game-breaking penalties flies in the face of this concept. Rule C8 is supposed to prevent this.

Rule G9 has already been exploited in the Israeli events, and has been called on numerous robots in US events.

This is wrong, this is gamebreaking, and this encourages behavior in the FRC competition that directly contradicts FIRST’s mission. Please re-interpret rule C8 to mean what it says.

C8. Don’t expect to gain by doing others harm. Strategies clearly aimed at forcing the opposing
ALLIANCE to violate a rule are not in the spirit of FIRST Robotics Competition and not allowed.
Rule violations forced in this manner will not result in an assignment of a penalty to the targeted ALLIANCE.

Sincerely,
XXXXXXXXXXX


#34

I completely agree with your idea; however, I would revise your message to be clear about what you’re referencing and potential solutions you have. Perhaps this (open to suggestions):

To whom it may concern,

We believe that the current rules for FIRST Deep Space are allowing for certain teams to gain a competitive advantage while violating one of FIRST’s core tenets, Gracious Professionalism. In this instance, a defender from Alliance A (on Alliance B’s side of the field) can force a robot from Alliance B attempting to place in the cargo-bay to cross over to Alliance A’s side, resulting in either G9 (if Alliance B already has a defender on A’s side) or G10 fouls (if the robot being pushed is extended while scoring). This incident has occurred to us and others, resulting in the robots being pushed being penalized significantly while the robots pushing are recognizing this strategy as a way of earning quick and easy points. See one of many examples in ISR District 4 Finals 3 here: https://clips.twitch.tv/RacyCoweringChimpanzeeChocolateRain.

We believe that C8 should’ve prevented this from occurring; however, due to the wording of the rule (“Strategies clearly aimed”) it is hard for REFEREES to distinguish between whether the pushing robot was attempting to push the cargo-placing robot away from the cargo bay (as a legal defensive move) or as an intentional strategy to force fouls. Due to the lack of certainty with regards to the intent of the defending robot, the referees tend to side with the defenders and grant the robot being pushed penalties with accordance to G9/G10. We believe that this rewards robots that do intentionally inflict fouls on the opponent alliance, allowing for robots “to gain by doing others harm”.

This is wrong, this is gamebreaking, and this encourages behavior in the FRC competition that we believe directly contradicts FIRST’s mission. Upon excessive debate on Chief Delphi, we believe that we may have reached multiple potential compromises for a rule change(s), and would appreciate it if you could consider them or implement your own.

  1. Revise G9 and G10 to require the robot to be completely beyond the line, not only bumpers. Therefore, if the robot is pushed fully over the line by an opponent defender, it could be clearer that the defending robot was intending to force a foul and not just push the scoring robot away from the cargo bay. Conversely, if a defending robot is only attempting to push the scoring robot away from the cargo bay (as should be allowed with FIRST defense rules), then the scoring robot wouldn’t cross the line completely and no fouls would be caused.
  2. Revise G9 and G10 to specify that if a robot crosses the line and immediately attempts to cross back (as defined by a specific time interval), then no fouls are granted. This wouldn’t result in debatable C8 violations and would remove the incentive for intentionally forcing an opponent robot across the line. In case the scoring robot is pinned across the line by an opponent defending robot and cannot return immediately, then this would be a clearer violation of C8 by the defending robot.

Sincerely,
XXXXXXXXXXX

Once we achieve a final version of this letter, it would be significantly appreciated (as @Tom_Line suggested) for each team to send out an email to first at
FIRSTRoboticsCompetition@firstinspires.org


There is no "Defense Agreement"
Violations of C8 unnoticed and rewarded by Referees
#35

I like what your getting at but don’t completely agree with the revisions suggested.

A defensive robot SHOULD have the option to push an offensive robot across the line. However, the current rules make the foul too quick and hard for an alliance to avoid without sacrificing their own defense altogether.


#36

I’ve seen a lot of trying to trap a defending team on your side in the endgame at Auburn. Is this a C8 violation?


#37

So if I’m understanding you (@Fields) correctly you think we should change statement 1 (Revise G9 and G10 to require the robot to be completely beyond the line) and keep statement 2 (Revise G9 and G10 to specify that if a robot crosses the line and immediately attempts to cross back (as defined by a specific time interval), then no fouls are granted.). I was trying to give FIRST a few options rather than forcing one solution, do you have an idea for revising statement 1 or do you think we should just remove statement 1 altogether? I do understand your argument though.


#38

No. This is a great way to stop a climb. You are not forcing fouls on them at all in this instance


#39

Change the second one.
I would remove the instant foul if you are forced across the line and change it to a 5s count.

This gives defense the freedom to attack your best scorer so defense is not cut down.
This also gives your alliance to get your defense bot back to your side to prevent a foul.


#40

So how about this version?

To whom it may concern,

We believe that the current rules for FIRST Deep Space are allowing for certain teams to gain a competitive advantage while violating one of FIRST’s core tenets, Gracious Professionalism. In this instance, a defender from Alliance A (on Alliance B’s side of the field) can force a robot from Alliance B attempting to place in the cargo-bay to cross over to Alliance A’s side, resulting in either G9 (if Alliance B already has a defender on A’s side) or G10 fouls (if the robot being pushed is extended while scoring). This incident has occurred to us and others, resulting in the robots being pushed being penalized significantly while the robots pushing are recognizing this strategy as a way of earning quick and easy points. See one of many examples in ISR District 4 Finals 3 here: https://clips.twitch.tv/RacyCoweringChimpanzeeChocolateRain .

We believe that C8 should’ve prevented this from occurring; however, due to the wording of the rule (“ Strategies clearly aimed ”) it is hard for REFEREES to distinguish between whether the pushing robot was attempting to push the cargo-placing robot away from the cargo bay (as a legal defensive move) or as an intentional strategy to force fouls. Due to the lack of certainty with regards to the intent of the defending robot, the referees tend to side with the defenders and grant the robot being pushed penalties with accordance to G9/G10. We believe that this rewards robots that do intentionally inflict fouls on the opponent alliance, allowing for robots “to gain by doing others harm ”.

This is wrong, this is gamebreaking, and this encourages behavior in the FRC competition that we believe directly contradicts FIRST’s mission. Upon excessive debate on Chief Delphi, we believe that we may have reached multiple potential compromises for a rule change, and would appreciate it if you could consider them or implement your own.

1 (preferred). Revise G9 and G10 to specify that if a robot crosses the line and immediately attempts to cross back (as defined by a specific time interval, such as 5 seconds), then no fouls are granted. This wouldn’t result in debatable C8 violations and would remove the incentive for intentionally forcing an opponent robot across the line. In case the scoring robot is pinned across the line by an opponent defending robot and cannot return immediately, then this would be a clearer violation of C8 by the defending robot.
2. Revise G9 and G10 to require the robot to be completely beyond the line, not only bumpers. Therefore, if the robot is pushed fully over the line by an opponent defender, it could be clearer that the defending robot was intending to force a foul and not just push the scoring robot away from the cargo bay. Conversely, if a defending robot is only attempting to push the scoring robot away from the cargo bay (as should be allowed with FIRST defense rules), then the scoring robot wouldn’t cross the line completely and no fouls would be caused.

Sincerely,
XXXXXXXXXXX


#41

I read through the three threads on this, and like this writeup a lot. Why do you prefer the first option over the second?


#42

Thanks, appreciate it.

Goes back to @Fields’ suggestion that defensive robots should still be able to push robots across the line to push them away from scoring positions. In addition, teams could “drift” over the line and then blame the defender that initially pushed them.

I’m also considering adding a third option, which would just be to become harsher with C8. This may be more likely to get implemented as it wouldn’t require a rule change this late in the season. What do you think?