Lesson Learned 2016 - The Positive

What did FIRST do particularly well this year?

The game.

Not just the game, but also the theme. At first it seemed jarring, but FIRST incorporated it into the game, the field, and everything else so well that it accomplished its goal admirably.

No game hint.

That is correct.

I think FIRST did a pretty good job of making Stronghold appeal more to the general public. The game wasn’t as easy to understand at first look as say, Aerial Assist, but most spectators were able to pick it up after a few matches. That combined with the theme made it extremely appealing to those not previously involved in FIRST.

For sure! An older couple had sat down next to me during Einstein who apparently wanted to check out the event that caused them a bit of trouble booking a hotel that week (they ended up at the Drury nearby). They seemed really impressed and asked a lot of questions excitedly. While it did take me about half a match to explain things in a high-level overview, they didn’t seem to lose interest and kept asking more.

As much as it seems to make sense that simple is always better, in this case, FIRST did a good job making a somewhat complex game that still captured the attention of the general public.

Also, I think the commitment theming helped out quite a bit.

Worlds, particularly from a spectator’s perspective. The game was really exciting, the matches were close, the streams were high quality, and #FIRSTChampsLive was honestly a huge step in the right direction. This was the first year that everything about worlds (from my perspective) was good, and I could see potential for it actually being a mainstream event.

Also, there was only one of them.

Full field view for streams at the Championship! As a fan of robotics, this was wonderful. Every stream should use at least part of the screen for a full field view. Otherwise the stream would have probably missed at least one of the times 330 righted themselves in the semis on Einstein.

The level of strategy in this game. The tradeoffs in design, options in defense selection, possibilities for defense and boulder starvation, multiple ways to score points, and everything else that made this game so much fun to play, watch, and discuss.

The webcast quality at champs was also amazing. I really like the full and split field views.

Any doubt I had about the theme was immediately diminished when they introduced teams for Einstein. That was awesome, and I hope a similar introduction is planned for future championship events as well.

This game was solid on a number of levels. Not the best game ever but definitely up there.

The streams for the Championship were really good.

The audio this year was far better in the upper deck than last year. I sat in the same spot as I did last year (very top row) and could hear the announcers and speakers.

Having the Einstein teams announced as they walked in was really nice.

The game was good and would go up as one my favorites with the addition of the defense selection which added a new strategy aspect.

The display screens between matches were excellent! Quick visuals of the game breakdown, what alliances accomplished during a match, & how many RPs they gained was helpful for participants and spectators.

Watching that from home felt like watching the Olympics. I absolutely loved it.

The entire game, the theme, the engineering challenges, the diversity of design, the Game Sense Champs coverage, the exciting eliminations. FIRST hit it out of the park with Stronghold.

Great game with few issues.

The theme was great and I hope they continue to use clear themes in future games.

No human player scoring… yeah I know it probably won’t last but this is a robotics contest not who can throw the best contest.

No Coopertition points.

Champs stream was great.

Score cards were almost great.

Heavily themed games can actually be really good.

Scoring was pretty balanced.

End Game!!!

The OM5P-AN “robot radio” was a (very slightly qualified) success. Though the way some teams chose to mount them exposed a potential susceptibility to repeated impacts in one direction, the on-field performance was much more than satisfactory. Choosing a device with open firmware (rather than one with unanalyzable proprietary software) worked great. It was especially nice to be able to power it via the Ethernet connector.

Strategically this game was awesome- loads better to scout/strategize in than last year… Our scouts certainly weren’t as bored as least year.

Raising the tower health to 10 was nice for champs. I liked the change, it certainly changed the strategy for quals & elims.

No co-op thank god! :yikes:

The game! I think having Disney Imagineering involved helped a great deal. Last year’s warehouse stacking simulation was so hard to explain to non-FIRST people and generate excitement.

I think the GDC struck a very good balance between “one really good robot can carry the alliance” and “all robots need to contribute something for the alliance to succeed”.

One good team could breach the defenses alone. A great team might even have been able to weaken the tower alone. However, I can’t think of any that could do both in the same match. However, two decent teams working together could do it without too much difficulty.

It was impossible for two teams to capture the tower without the help of the third bot, but even most struggling teams could make their way to the batter to complete the capture.

There was a lot to be done. It required teamwork, but not three superstars.