Play to win

OK i just got finsh reading about team throwing matches to help friends out. I can not stand this type of play. If this is true this is the lowest of low way of winning. I do not care if my team is in last place we will always play to win. If you want to be the best you have to play the best. I tell that to my students all the time. I want to win the not by dq not by help from the other team but by being the best. A win any other way is meager.


there is a word that describes teams that throw a match for any reason:


Teams should always play to their best ability. It’s the only gracious and professional way to do things. Period.

I totally agree, and let me say…the Killer Bees ALWAYS play to win. I don’t even know what I’d do if a partner of ours tried to throw our match away.

This is another potential problem if you have multi team collabortations, or one team entering more than one robot- they would know which teams they are allied with throughout the seeding matches, and they could decide to make one of their robots be the winning machine, and if they are against their own ‘partners’ they could help them win instead of winning themselves.

I think that would be absolutely appalling. When you’re alligned with a partner, you should be playing your hardest and cooperating. This sort of stuff is completely ungracious and unprofessional. I hope some teams have more integrity than this.

BTW - Im not trying to sneak in a design collaboration debate in this thead - lets not get into that please

I was thinking more of reasons why a team would throw their own match to help an opponent win instead of their alliance partner - thats the point I was trying to make -

there is no good reason to throw a match - even if you HATE your alliance partner and your opponents are your best friends, when you are on the field play to win

nobody wants a trophy on their shelf that they didnt deserve to win - if you want a trophy you can have one made for about $10

its how you got it - thats whats important: playing your best, playing by the rules, playing with honor and playing to win!

I agree with the above post completely - for example, our team (233) and Krunch (79) are great friends, as we were paired last year to great effect. This year, we ended up on opposite sides of seeded alliances, and were put directly against each other, even physically, in the quarterfinals. Both teams knew that however much we liked each other, we were going to give each other some honest competition. Neither of us pulled any punches - Krunch gunned for us every match, doing the best they absolutely could to stop us, and vice versa.

The thought of throwing a match is so alien to me, I can’t even understand why one team would insult another like that. It’s like saying, “you can’t win unless we give up.”

I completely agree that throwing a match is underhanded and dissapointing. I know that sometimes our team has to go up against some teams we absolutely love, but we wouldn’t throw a match to help them, and I know they wouldn’t throw one either. The important thing is that after the match, even if you’ve just beat or lost to one of your friends, you’re still friends, and you still have your respect for one another and your integrity. All I ask of those who would consider throwing a match is: play fair. Play right. The judges aren’t going to reward you for throwing a match to help another team, they’re going to reward you for your effort and attitude, whether you win or not.

ugh just as soon as we get a good qualifying method underhanded tricks rear their ugly head…i hope that we keep a system that you can still control your own qualifying, but at the same time eliminated this dirty style of play…

Going into competition on Saturday (at AZ) we were in a position where losing our two remaining matches would have been advantageous. Instead of getting picked by a lower alliance on the first round of picking, we would have been picked by a higher alliance on the second round of picking. But we decided that playing to lose was stupid so we decided to win and we did and it was the best match we have played yet. And we ended up getting picked by the 4th alliance and winning over the higher alliance(s) and we made it to the final finals.

well that’s awesome to run on the honor system and everything
But then again you have to realize that there are human beings involved and to try and get them to all play nice is next to impossible.
There is hope as long as we let EVERY team know that we do not appreciate it and will not tolerate it

Seems like this happens every year (just like in 2002 Chokehold and 2003 Collusion ). I thought the new win-loss qualifications system would end these ungracious qualification strategies, but alas I was too optimistic. Game theory and the less savory parts of human nature prevail over Gracious Professionalism too frequently. I think so highly of the FIRST community because of the great sportsmanship among most of the teams, but the actions of a few teams just don’t live up to that.

Why do we compete in FIRST Competitions?
It is obviously not money like professional athletes. We volunteer our valuable time in an attempt to win cheap trophies and medallions. We play for pride, pride in our team and in our work.

Nothing can bring you more pride than going to a competition and doing your best every match (no matter how well you do). That robot is a product of your hard work and its mere existence is a tribute to your greatness. Throwing a match for any reason is self-defeating. It damages pride beyond what trophies can repair. I would rather be the first pick of the 8th Alliance than the second pick of the 1st Alliance. If you do your best and purposly lose maybe you will end up picking or as the 1st pick. As for letting “friend” teams win: this is a “riendly competition”, so be friends and compete already.

Let’s have a fair competition free of qualification ranking trickery for once. May the best teams win. If we are all have pride in our teams, we are all winners!

I think if you did throw a match it would backfire on you in the end anyway

lets say another team is doing well, and they come up to you and say “hey if you let us win this match we will pick you as our alliance partner in the elimination rounds!”

By asking you to throw a match they have proven they have no honor - so what makes you think they will keep their word when they are blantenly not playing by the rules and asking you to defraud your current alliance partner - also, if they have to win by having their opponent roll over and play dead they will not make it past the quarterfinals, where their opponents WILL be playing for real.

Or as someone suggested above, you are ranked 12 or 14 and you are thinking that maybe if you slip down a little bit further you will get picked by the #1 seed on their second round?

This would also backfire on you- teams understand that it might take a good part of the seeding rounds to get your bot up to 100%, to get your driving skills down in actual play - they are looking mostly at your last two matches to see how well you are doing at the end of the seeding matches and to see if your bot is still in one piece after a whole day of playing. Besides do you think the #1 seed got to be there by playing games with the rules and trying to be clever? There is nothing that says the #1 seed has to pick #2, or #9 they can pick any team they want on their first round, and so can the other 7.

There are many aspects of FIRST that are complicated, but this is clear as it can be, when you are on the field play to win, no matter what.

It’s simple.
The mirror test.
Can you look in the mirror and be 100% proud of your efforts?
No rules will ever completely remove these situations.
It’s important to note, out of 900+ teams, those who “collude” or “throw matches” are in the distinct minority.
FIRST is about “doing the right thing” even if it’s a tougher road to follow. The vast majority of teams understand that.
For those who don’t - they still have to look in the mirror.

Play to win or don’t play at all, but if you lose take it graciously. Enough Said.

my team, 1288, was betrayed by our allies… i wont give their name or team number, but i will say that they wound up taking one of the lowest places of the st. louis regional… so it actually does pay to be strong, like our team was, and fight until the end, because the back stabbing allies will fall through in their own weaknesses. we wound up taking the 16 spot, and got medals for being in quarter finals, and got a lovely trophy for being the highest seeding rookie team. and that felt pretty good. especially since we were betrayed and all.:slight_smile:

whoa… i understand everybody’s frustration about this… i mean who doesn’t like to win? but let’s remember… we should still be forgiving of these other teams who just don’t play up to their potential… perhaps they had a momentary lapse is judgement… or maybe they were just buckling under the pressure… whatever it was- be easy on them and give them a “friendly” reminder about why it feels so darn good to win!!! :stuck_out_tongue:

people are not complaining about teams that didnt play up to their potential - they are talking about teams who deliberately lost their own match to help their opponent (who was a friend of theirs) for whatever reason

and dragging down their alliance partner with them in the process

hmm i didnt want to get in this discussion but i just love to put my 2 cents in :slight_smile:

FIRST brings everyone closer and we make friends like said earlier 79 and 233 are really good friends and its obvious. but to throw a match to help a team, i can see it but it shows no character. We thought about it once this year when we were by ourselves and we were goign against our friends we thoguht about it and even talked about it with them but we decided that shows no character and we played to win. And now that i look throught the thread and start seeing other peoples thoughts i think helping another team and throwing a match is stupid. I mean you never know you might throw a match and take down your teammate but what if you need them next year what if they are picking a alliance and you want them to pick you, do you think they will want to pick you…i dont think so. Thats like if Roger Clemens played against the yankees and he decided to loose on perpose, do you think he will have a job the next morning i think not. thats what pete rose was kicked out of baseball for taking bets against his own team.

So guys lets play to win

thats my two cents