Put suggestions for FRC themes, Game concepts, or general ideas for FRC games. I will post something as soon as I have time.
Just to say it before anyone else, water game. other than that, I always thought it would be cool to have a game where the objective changes as time goes on and you have to take objects from the first objective where you scored and then to the second, (like you are a robot on a assembly line taking each part to different places to get something done to the object)
Like having a sewer game where you first have to place a manhole cover and then a ball (sewage) behind it? One before the other with a changing objective.
Forgot no water game stuff. I will forgive @Brittan.
I swear a capture the flag game would be absolutely amazing.
I doubt we’ll go back to the simpler days of FRC, but I really liked 2014’s Arial Assist. It was simple, both to play and explain. Good sight-lines for drivers and audience. It emphasized actually working with your alliance partners in serial (passing something actively TO them) instead of the more typical parallel teamwork we see (alliance partners working on the the same task at the same time without interacting with each other, usually actively avoiding each other). And you interacted with your opponents.
I am still proud of my “water” game idea: Polar Panic. Theme being a research crew out in the inhospitable cold. Robots could escort animals, collect samples, repair some heating, deliver supplies, avoid thin ice, etc; I think there’s plenty of design space for the GDC to work with.
My father pitched an idea to me once that he thought was excellent.
Have you ever seen fish markets (like Pike’s) where the fish get tossed across booths into their displays/ice boxes? So imagine that, but the fish are made out of something like ballistic gel. Picture a 2014-style field with the 2015 dividing wall running across the width of the center. Two teams on each alliance start on their drivers’ side of the field, and a third “inbounder” stays across the field. The alliances must toss these ballistic gel fish over the division in order to score them in buckets/shelves/scoring zones, what have you.
Anyways, “Fish Market Fiesta” never really took off amongst my friends.
Recycle Rush 2: Actually Recycling
Teams pick up Fuel, Boulders, and Cargo to be “recycled” in the appropriate Bin: (modified) Power-Up Switches. Three Bins are at the center of the field along the side of the wall, with each end facing the alliance station walls (rotated 90 from Power Up). Teams earn points for each Fuel, Boulder, and Cargo Recycled (3, 4, and 5 respectively), and a Recycle Bonus is awarded for scoring more recyclables than your opposing alliance (1pt/s per Bin). This bonus triples in the End Game. Teams will be penalized for scoring an incorrect recyclable in a Bin. The recyclables would start in bins similar to 2017’s, but would be mixed together.
To make things really interesting, Teams can deploy Mega Mini-bots to the Mini-Field that rests on the non-playable area above the Bins at any point in the match. These Mega Mini-bots can be piloted by up to two Jr. High FTC students or one High School FTC student (or one High School FRC student if no FTC team is available for that FRC team). These Mega Mini-bots need to score enough Gold/Silver Minerals to unlock Climbing Bars for their Parent robots (each Climbing Bar is deployed after certain milestones are met [i.e. x to unlock the 1st, x+y to unlock the 2nd, then x+y+z to unlock the 3rd]). The driver stations for these students are behind the side of the field (in front of typically where the FTA table is). Parent robots can hang whenever they want during the match.
The idea is that most of the game pieces and field elements are recycled from previous games. Even the deployed Climbing Bars are the similar shape/size as 2016 and 2018’s bars. The Switches can be redesigned so there’s enough room for 2 robots to drive by, even though there’ll be the same defending rule as this year. Since there was so much dead space on the field, I wanted to bring back the concept of “Mini-bots”, but make it such that FTC teams could actually help out (rather than what happened in 2011). I also wanted to give them something meaningful to do, but won’t be game-winning like 2011.
I would like the points to work out such that no single thing overpowers the others. Missing one hang shouldn’t lose you the match if you score recyclables well. Teams should also be able to make come backs if they can score really well in the End Game if they choose to make a last-second climb.
I’ve never thought through an entire game before, but I have discussed potential semi-independent aspects of games with others in the past. Here are a few:
A friend of mine (JTL3, originally of 2415) once suggested an energy-limited game – literally. You get some number of joules from the battery (and some max number of air tanks), then your robot is disabled. The PDP already has current metering and the robot logs battery voltage, so it’s a straightforward thing to implement.
Another example: a game where the rules require each team to choose and declare which type of game piece (e.g., cargo vs. hatches) they are allowed to manipulate, with no option to “do everything.” More generically, a requirement to choose and declare a limited set of action(s) they are then allowed to perform, with trade-offs (e.g., if you want to launch game pieces, you may not use cameras/optical sensors). Obviously, this requires a game with more than one type of game piece or actions. I think it would be most reasonable to make this declaration during each inspection. This sort of choice is not unprecedented; it’s similar to 2007 or 2017’s sizing rules. I found 2007’s size/weight tradeoff to be intriguing, as it represents the intersection of engineering and legal requirements.
Another thought was to have a game without drivetrains. I think that it could only be interesting if the designers built in plenty of defense to the game, perhaps so far as to allow end-effector-to-end-effector contact. There were a few non-drivetrain 'bots in 2015, but that game had…other flaws.
On the other side of the spectrum, it would be neat to see more games like 2016 – games where the drivetrain is a scoring mechanism in and of itself. 2008 had this to a lesser extent with lap points. I’d like to see a version of 2016’s style where the solution couldn’t just be, “build a 4/6/8 wheel skid-steer with pneumatic wheels and gun it.”
I would be interested in seeing a game that combines two aspects we’ve seen in the past – non-reusable scoring targets (e.g., 2019, 2011, 2007) and high limits on game piece possession limits (e.g., 2006). We see the inverse (low game piece limits, infinitely reusable scoring targets) frequently, which leads to the common cycle-based game.
In a different vein, I have also enjoyed discussing the implications of limiting robot building materials. For example, it would be interesting to see a year where there are low limits on the amount of steel, aluminum, and plastic that can be used in the robot, but explicitly no limit on wood.
Ok I’m breaking my own rule. So this is my idea for a game. A water and fire game. Here’s how it would work.
The game would be a tropical theme, so think Hawaii, tiki torches (more on that later), and volcanoes (also more on that). The name is undecided, but if ya’lls have ideas let me know.
The main idea around the game is that both alliances have similar, but different tasks. This would require good robots to be able to be good at both task. Requiring deep building strategy, which in turn would decrease the number of good teams. Not sure if that’s a good thing, but it would be challenging. Schedule would have to be evenly on each alliance in quals. Plus since they’re getting rid of stop build day this would be a way to balance out the difficulty.
Alright now the game.This game would be returning to the classic 15 sec. auto and 2:15 min. teleop. The red alliance scores points by taking tiki torches over a stream of lava (probably red ping pong balls), lighting them and placing them in the post holes. The blue alliance earns points by grabbing water (blue ping pong balls), and storing them in water buckets. In the last 30 seconds of the match alliances their ping pong balls into the volcano in the center of the field to either erupt the volcano (red alliance) or prevent it from erupting (blue alliance).
The regular ranking point system would be used for wins (wins: 2, tie:1). The red alliance can earn a ranking point for lighting and placing X number of tiki torches, and the blue alliance can get a ranking point by filling X number of water buckets. One of the alliances can earn a ranking point by taking control of the volcano.
So anyway if you have any thoughts on this idea let me know. Also feel free to give CONSTRUCTIVE criticism to other ideas in this thread.
Here is an idea I had for infinite recharge that likely won’t happen:
Each alliance has a tower in the center of their half of the field. These are circular/ polygonal polycarbonate, approx 7 ft high. At the base of each tower is a mechanism to dump the contents of the tower by opening the bottom. I was thinking a two-ended crank that simply turns the bottom plate to a vertical position. The towers have a circular bar around the top below the catch hopper and a circle marked on the ground around the tower big enough for three robots to park in (I.e about four feet radius bigger than the base of the tower)
The game is a race to score small spheres (because andymark has too much fuel) into the top of the tower either by shooting 2017- style or dumping from an elevator. The towers start filled to the top with fuel and there are points if the tower is dumped within the first 15 seconds autonomously.
There are markings on the side of the towers for filling to a various levels. Robots can dump the towers at any time by using the crank to continue scoring. They can even attempt to dump the other teams tower. Points are scored for the level the fuel reaches when the tower dumps or the game ends. Scaling is not linear though so one full tower counts more than two half full towers
Idk how the game works but the game piece is a tetrahedron w/ 13" sides. Have fun making an intake…