This is my take of how basic strategy in scoring points will occur at the highest level of play. This is only conjecture. It is based only on my understanding of the games, and the robots competing in it before any major competitions have been played. Feel free to deliberate on my idea, contest them with yours, or offer different strategies altogether.
Blue Alliance: They are the team in the best position to capture the most amount of points possible, and likely have faster cycle times than the Red alliance
Blue Robot 1: Blue Robot 1 would be a feeder robot. Example of Feeder Robot The role of the feeder robot would be to send balls to Blue Robot 2. This Robot could send balls Blue Robot 2 in multiple ways. It could give balls by launching directly into Blue Robot 2’s hopper or rolling them with some dispenser or dropper into Blue Robot 2’s intake. This Robot should be able to consistently get every ball from the Loading Zone to Blue Robot 2 with very little time loss.
Blue Robot 2: Blue Robot 2 would be a long-distance, high cycle speed robot that would shoot from behind the Color Wheel to reduce the time it would take Blue Robot 1 to be fed balls. This robot would be able to hit 2 pointers consistently with the occasional 3-pointers; however, its main goal is to complete all three stages, including the actuation of the Color Wheel. This robot would be able to make the trench run or very quickly cross the rendezvous bars. For optimal efficiency, its intake should be on an opposing side from their shooting line, as to be able to pick up any missed or dropped balls from Blue Robot 1.
Blue Robot 3: Blue Robot 3 would serve as the 2nd scorer for the Blue alliance. It would take any lost balls traveling from Red Robot 1 to Red Robot 2, and score those balls with a high degree of accuracy. It would play defense against Red Robot 1, attempting to block balls traveling from the Loading Zone to Red Robot 2, either by Red Robot 1, or rolling across the field.
Red Alliance: The goal of the Red alliance would be to play a counter-strategy against the Blue alliance, scoring points over Ranking Points.
Red Robot 1: Red Robot 1 would fill the position of the feeder bot, feeding balls from the Loading Zone to Red Robot 2. It would likely move across the field instead of being stationary, dropping balls into the trench, under the color wheel to Red Robot 2, it would avoid having balls stolen during travel from Red Robot 1 to Red Robot 2, but their cycle time would increase as a result. This Robot would have to be able to feed balls into the trench to build a bank for Red Robot 2 to draw from.
Red Robot 2: Red Robot 2 would take the balls dropped into the trench by Red Robot 1, and shoot them at a closer distance, as to increase accuracy. It would have an intake opposing their shooting line, and would be able to quickly intake balls, and then send them into the 3 point goal. Its goal is to gain as many points, by shooting with a higher accuracy than the other team.
Red Robot 3: Red Robot 3 would act as an aggressive defense, blocking Blue Robots 1&2’s lines of sight. It would attempt to force Blue Robot 1 to drive over to Blue Robot 2 to dispense balls. The lower angle and ball speed required to send balls from Blue Robot 1 to Blue Robot 2 would make them easy to intercept. Red Robot 3 would send balls over the ever accurate Red Robot 2, unless it was also capable of making 3 point shots consistently. Its main goal is to slow down the cycle time of the Blue alliance and allow their team to catch up in points.
Results: Blue alliance has a higher theoretical point and ranking point output, as it can score a large number of cells, matching the likely-to-increase number of cells required for the levels of Regional and Internation Competitions. Red alliance has an opportunity to win if they can score 3-point shots significantly more consistently, and their Red Robot 3 can slow down the cycle times of Blue alliance. Red alliance’s strategy of creating a bank of balls for Red Robot 2 to draw from would lead to more consistent cycle rates. By making a ‘bank’ of balls, Red Robot 2 could have access to more than 10 balls in one cycle (5 on Blue Robot 2 + 5 on Blue Robot 1). Blue alliance would be pressured by Red Robots 1&2 to not make an attempt to take from their bank in fear of incurring a one-sided penalty.
Notes: The theoretical ‘Ultimate Alliance’ would be able to consistently score 3-point shots without compromising on cycle times, and with their Robot 3 taking a great deal of the flooded balls to score additional 3-point shots.
I didn’t focus on autos or climbs, as there is likely to be a hard limit that many alliances will hit. Climbing is also fairly cut-and-dry; spend as much time scoring over climbing, then score a balanced, 3-robot climb for maximum points and ranking points.
Robot 2 (either alliance) Likely won’t ever be worth guarding against, as you can’t go into the opposing alliance’s pit, and the arc on most teams’ shooters makes it either impractical or impossible to actually block the shot. I suspect most of the defense will be around making Robot 2 useless by cutting off their supply of balls, and forcing them to move into a more vulnerable position to the blocking of shots, or simply slowing down their cycle times.
I am open to criticism if there is a gaping hole in my strategy to predict the last month of FRC competitions. Also, it’s like 1, I didn’t proof-read this. lol.