Late as it is for strategy, I was thinking.

Goaltending, according to FIRST, is blocking the downward trajectory of a small ball.

Is there anything stopping a team from blocking the upward trajectory of a small ball? It ain’t pretty, but it’d be highly effective at stopping good HPs.

yes, your bot cant extend over the human player station

But doesnt that sort of move past the “intent” of having a boundary. Not to mention the safety issue of having a robot extend past the lexan barrior?..why bother having a lexan barrior if robots can go over it?

Maybe im looking at this wrong, you all tell me.

thats what i said

Q: is anything stopping you from bocking the ball on the upward path?
A: yes, you CANT… extend over the wall…

Robots can’t cross the plane. Conceivably they could tower over everything though and prevent shots from being made. Conceivably I could also arc a shot that came down right on top of it as well. But as is often the case with goaltending, it all comes back to the issue of gracious professionalism.

A small point. Most shooting techniques I’ve seen involve a ball that is headed upwards well past the lexan barrier. Thus, I’d think you could block shots right at the lexan barrier. however, you’d have to do so with blocking your opponents vision, as that’s illegal.

EDIT: I think it’s physically impossible, or atleast very very difficult to shoot a ball at the stationary goal and have it arcing down at the barrier, and STILL have a reasonable chance of going in. That being the key point. Goaltending can’t be called on balls that patently aren’t going into the goal. Else, you could just hit robots with balls anywhere on the field to score points.

I think that the refs need to be aware of this. In about every match at the MWR you could always see a team in some way breaking the plane of the field. No penalties were ever given for this.

Actually Ken, there is no rule that states you cannot break the top of the vertical player station wall. The rule you may be thinking of addresses only the ball corral. (G28)
Therefore, if/when it happened at MWR, it should not have been penalized.

However, there is always the safety rule, and if something is deemed a safety hazard they will do something about it. But, in general, it’s not illegal.
If you’ve got an arm or something dangling down over the wall trying to block the HP, that could be considered a safety hazard, but if you’re a robot with a 2x ball in your arm, that happens to cross the top of the wall, it’s ok.
If you’ve seen some of the HPs out there, it’d probably be a waste of time to try blocking them, and totally blocking their view with a blanket or something is illegal, due to being un-GP.

Incredibly sorry. It’s late and im taking a break from a 10 page paper due before I leave for atlanta. :o

I believe its acceptable to break every plane of the field EXCEPT the ball corral, which is a little insane. 108’s personally almost taken out a ref.


I believe that team 45 was penalized several times at the Midwest regional for crossing over the top of the plane with a ball in hand–It didn’t seem as if they were going into the corral from what I saw. Take a look at the video (posted at SOAP still?) if you can and make your own call.

If 45 had gotten up in the face of some other team, it would be pretty darned hard to shoot over that monstrous arm holding a ball. Of course, they didn’t really need to, being such an offensive powerhouse…

yes, this one:

<G06> A ROBOT will be disabled if the ROBOT operation is deemed unsafe.

so by extending your bot over the very expensive protective barrier that FIRST has provided for ‘some apparent reason’ you risk your bot being disabled

and ‘deemed unsafe’ is in the eyes of the ref - wanna play that game on the field? No reasonable person would think its ok for your bot to reach over the ‘protective barrier’ and say we are not doing anything unsafe.

It is possible, my robot has an arm that extends upward about 7 feet, and “wings” that spread about 4 feet. We would never do this but it is possible to block the human player. but if the human player throws a ball and hits us who gets the penelty? without going over the lexan wall.

7 feet would only be about as high as the shield, but even if a bot could hold something up 9 or 10 feet high, in that case I would toss the balls to the other human player, or step to one side - I cant imagine blocking the HP being an effective defense.

in fact, if your bot is holding something up that high, I can see the HP going into dodgeball mode and nailing your bot with a ball as hard as possible - either the thing its holding will be knocked loose (2X ball?) or your bot will be knocked over by the impact - 9 feet is a lot of leverage!

Well, yes there is the possibility of being disabled if you’re obviously being unsafe by reaching over the 7’ wall. We were “penalized”, not disabled, twice for this, but shouldn’t have been. Actually, someone else watching the video thought we were pushed anyways, but oh well… I think the point is that inadvertant or slight plane breakage with a 2x or your robot arm up that high is not a penalty. Reaching over and hanging a ball or arm over a hp’s head to block him would probably be a safety hazard.

I agree, blocking the HP that way wouldn’t be a very effective defense, mainly because it’s not too hard to shoot over or around it.

I don’t think there is a penalty solely for throwing a ball and hitting a robot.

Sorry that I was wrong here. I guess I’ve held that misconception the entire time. Though, I do think it’s very unreasonable that robots can break the plane of the field. I watched many at my regional swinging arms etc. many feet outside the field, and thought about what would happen if they hit someone. I even witnessed a robot holding a ball right over the hp area. Personally, I believe that a rule should be made about this, if you can’t break the plane with your wheels, why should you with other parts of the robot?

Yeah, if you have swinging arms outside the field where all the volunteers sit, they can and will disable you. Not in all cases, but the refs certainly are strict on the safety hazard rule and will disable you if it’s blatantly obvious you can hit someone. It all depends on what’s going on. I’ve seen them not disable because they (the ref) were the only ones standing near it and not really in harms way (according to their own judgement), but if an arm is swinging around wildly near people on the sidelines, they will shut you down without hesitation. That is all up to the ref.

The only thing I can say about the difference between being in the ball corral, and being over the 7’ wall is that, they had to do something from preventing robots being designed to deliberately reach into the ball corral to deliver balls, or whatever. That is a quick safety hazard due to the fact that hp’s are actually reaching INTO the ball corral as balls come in.

However, there aren’t many people out there at 7’ tall to have the hazard of getting a 2x ball or robot arm shoved in their face at that height. In my opinion, since the design of this game creates long arms and vertical height robot parts, the quick over-and-back (across the top wall) movement of a 2x ball high up in the air poses less of a threat. I’ve seen robots out there that hold this ball up high while they’re feeding balls into the corral, and while they do what they can to avoid being above the wall, it can happen. If it was a penalty, you would probably see more penalties called against robots pushing them into the wall, causing their arm to cross the plane.
Again, the safety hazard is the refs call and if he feels it’s a safety hazard, he’ll disable you.

oh, and btw, I would think most times if this were to occur, it would be over your own player station, so you would be blocking your own hp and creating the “safety hazard” on your own team (not that this excuses it by any means). But typically there would be no reason for an opponent bot to be reaching over your 7’ wall over your hp. Not sure why you’d want to be that near to your opponents ball corral!

Actually, I’ve got (IMHO) the perfect strategy for such a robot.

Imagine a robot that in autonomous mode can get across the field in a hurry and pop open a big see-throughable net (a la ComBBAT, but opening horizontally). If you made the net wide enough (the whole 20’, maybe less if you did some figuring), high enough, and got the net nice and flush against the wall, you’d have great defense. 100 points maximum, and that’s assuming both of their robots hang.

But to take it to the next level, all you’d need is to collect all of the caught balls and spit them across the field (kinda like that red robot did in the game animation). Get a partner that’ll herd them, and you’re in for a show.

I think it could be done–thoughts?

Yeah, if you have swinging arms outside the field where all the volunteers sit, they can and will disable you.

the long sides of the field are roped off from spectators and the judges- your bot is allowed to extend out past the field borders on the sides by the rules - they can not disable your bot unless it makes contact with the floor to ‘return to the playfield’ - ie, if it falls over, has to push against the floor, or the drive wheels go outside the borders.

If a bot was disabled because a judge or cameraman was standing next to the edge of the field, I would DEMAND the match be replayed - they have no business being that close to the field to the point where they are interfering with the robots.

Actually, at SVR, penalties were given for breaking the plane of the barrier, no matter whether it was through the ball corral or over the window. Specifically, I remember 253 throwing their arm back over the wall at the beginning of the match (in auto mode) and getting a red flag for it.

Yes, again, it’s allowed to go outside the field, as long as you don’t touch the floor. HOWEVER, since all the volunteers sit outside the field (i would guess some are within 8’ of the field), if you have a longggg arm that is swinging about wildly, they can disable you for safety hazard. The refs are also standing right there at the side of the field and if they feel they are in harms way, they’ll disable you.
I don’t think the volunteers should be sitting anywhere within 10+ feet, but that’s not for me to say. We’ve had our arm (inadvertantly of course) swinging about outside the field mostly in the air, near the refs even, but they haven’t disabled us. If there’s an 8yr old kid volunteer that’s sitting on his chair outside the field that is at risk, there’s no problem in disabling it. He’s not “interefering” with the robots, he’s just sitting where he was told. Theoretically, the bots should be inside the field anyways!!

Based on what I’ve seen, I think the refs really try to wait until you’re a big danger outside the field. If you touch the floor, you’re done. But if you’re swinging outside, I think they do what they can to avoid disabling. I think it would be absurd to argue over what would and would not be a safety hazard to people outside the field. Yes, it’s dumb if a cameraman is right on the edge, and I’m not sure if they would allow that close proximity, but he’s not “interfering” with the robots.
Bottom line, I think the refs are pretty lenient on the safety hazard thing, and if you can’t stay within those limits, they’re right in disabling you.