Niche robots for 2020

In the past we have had niche robots as 3rd picks in elims. 2018 had vault bots, and 2019 had ramp bots. My team has had trouble identifying what that robot is for this season and we were wondering what other teams opinions were. Only thoughts we had was a carry bot to get a triple climb, but that doesn’t seem feasible for the trend of niche bots. Any reply is welcomed, and thank you for reading/replying!

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Not sure how competitive this is, but if you intake on your side, cross your sector line and roll the balls through the trench, you could save your alliance some of that precious cycle time.

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Did it though??

I usually like to answer this question myself… but it’s definitely not obvious this year. I don’t think you can build a robot that doesn’t manipulate Power Cells in some way and expect to be competitive. I also don’t think you can afford not to climb…so if you’re manipulating Power Cells and climbing what kind of niche role is there?

One idea I’ve been thinking a lot about is a “Cleanup Bot” that hangs around the Loading Zone and acquires Power Cells from there, just to drive out of the Sector and launch them to the other side of the field. Basically the Cleanup Bot would ensure your opponent never has a chance to get into a positive feedback loop, they would eliminate the need for the rest of your alliance to cycle to the human player station, and they would be in a logical position to play defense while not launching Power Cells.

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Not so much a niche, but more of a 3rd pick option that i see there being is a robot that cant climb, but continues scoring. Not all robots will climb. Thats just a fact. One climb is equal to about 1.5-2 cycles (in the high goal). Theoretically, if you have an alliance with two strong climb bots that can balance each other out, it wouldnt be a bad idea to have a strong PC bot. This bot, for penalty purposes, would probably need to be a trench bot, but having a fast, small, scoring bot going back and forth for another 30 seconds while everyone else is focused on climbing, could be very beneficial, and could result in more than 25pts; even more than their climb would be worth.

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wheel specialist.

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Also known as: robot that won’t get picked.

You need to do way more than just the wheel.

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The wheel only bots only chance to getting picked in that scenario would be at an easier event, like maybe carleton or Georgian or western, and they’d have to have a very high PTS prevented for them to stand a chance IMO

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Wheel only bots have absolutely zero chance of being picked.

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There are some really shallow events out there. I’m not saying a wheel only bot is a good strategy but I certainly can see one getting picked if it drives well, doesn’t break down and doesn’t get penalties.

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my guess is that the “niche robot” would be the low goal bot

similar to other years with a low goal not many teams would pay attention to the low goal, and the teams that are going for low goal would most likely be the wheel bot also. Useful in quals, not very useful in elims

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Fair. But. In the case that the low + wheel bot is good at what it does, there’s a very good possibility it could rank well, given that it is the one scoring the RP for the team. Do well as a low + wheel bot, you could possibly be in a picking position. From there, you can pick who you want to score.

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As someone going to both of these events, I dont see many 29 ball matches happening so I dont think there will be much value in a wheel only bot. Maybe for elims if it does killer defense.

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I could see one getting picked at a weak event as solely a defense bot.

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If the team wasn’t smart enough to realize that a wheel only robot is a terrible idea, I highly doubt that they’ll be the type of team I can trust to play effective defense.

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I didn’t say anything about the team picking being intelligent about their choice.

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I personally could see if a team played defense with a spinner mech, with a triple climb. If you have pick up the other 2 bots each match having that on an alliance will make that a lot more competitive in quals I feel. If they’re running good defense you allow for the other 2 robots to score effectively, you can support them buy slowing the enemies down and taking the wheel when available.
It’s for sure not as great as not shooting balls, but I think it’ll still be plausible in some compositions

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I would say ball-moving bots (to make cycle times faster for offense bots) that can climb (or are small enough to climb off another bot)

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I’d say it would be bots that don’t have a climb this year (unless they are outstanding somewhere else)

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Great defense plus reliable hang, with no ball capability (except possibly dumping 3 into the low goal in auto) will probably be a first round pick at many events. If not an alliance captain.

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I gotta strongly disagree there. Yes, defense is good to have. Yes, climb is important. But giving up a bot that can reliably do power cells? I can’t see someone doing that for a first round pick. I could be wrong, but that just doesn’t seem worth it. Why risk the possibility of not getting a capable scoring bot the second round, for a robot that just drives and climbs? But that’s just me.

1 Like