What positions would everyone else robot be best suited for? Is it an all around robot, a scorer, a middle range, a long range, defensive, hanging,
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Basically Jordan is asking what you guys are doing like trying an all around robot, a scorer, a middle range, a long range, defensive, hanging, and so on.
I expect that most robots are being built to be able to play in any zone, many are being designed to hang, and many will have some sort of omni-directional drive (mecanum, omniwheels, or swerve)
But definitely not all.
Ourselves, we’re still unsure of our kicker’s ability, but we’re building to be scoring-only first, then if we successfully attempt that, we’ll move on to hanging. Not really going for defensive and can’t tell if we can score long-range yet.
Id say ours is a long range defender that can climb…
Based on our analysis, offensive and defensive robots will look somewhat different.
Defensive robots need to be able to get in the way of a shot and push the opponent around. An offensive robot needs to be agile enough to avoid the defender while lining up for a shot.
Defensive robots only care about moving the ball forward as far as they can. Offensive robots care about precision shots that keep the ball in the goal.
They say “jack of all trades, master of none” - there will be quite a few (maybe even a lot) robots that attempt to do everything, and they’ll do alright. Then there will be robots that are built specifically to play in one zone, and they’ll do that very well.
Very rarely do you see alliances picking generic “jack of all trade” robots in the first round - they pick robots that compliment them the best. If you have an offensive robot, you’re going to pick someone that’s really good in the middle or defense. It’s only when you’re getting down near the end that you see “jack of all trade” robots being picked - because at that point, there’s no one left that specializes in the zone that team needs to cover.
For our robot, we’re aiming for midfield + hanging, and we’re going to do it very well. We know how our robot will handle in an offensive or defensive role, and we’re prepared to play that if needed (with random alliances, it’s likely you’ll have to play outside your comfort zone).
Those that can “control” the middle of the field will dominate, as it is the source of the balls that are recycled.
Why score from the near end if you can do it from the middle?
Get rid of the “middle man” and score.
Defense is being highly underestimated.
I played soccer for years. Its very different when its by yourself vs. an opposing team.
I think that the top robots picked are actually ‘jack of all trades’ but excel at one facet of the game, and thus only do that one thing. So, it seems that they can only do one thing but in reality would be very good at other facets of the game. Last year, I think 67 would have made a great defensive/EC runner with their drivers and pickup. 1114 in 2008 would have been an amazing lap bot given their autonomous and drivers. 330 in 2007 would have been an excellent defensive ramp bot given their strong drivetrain and experienced drivers. Each of these teams, however, were better at scoring so they never really got the chance to showcase their other skills.
I think the top bots will be able to play in atleast 2 different zones. Say, for example, the top seed is a scoring powerhouse that only plays in the front zone. If they are the best team, I want to be on their alliance and in order to be on their alliance I would need to play in the far or middle zone. To increase my chances of being an attractive partner to compliment them, it is is my best interest to play more than one zone.
I absolutely agree with your statements. Those who control the mid-field will definitely dominate the game. In which case a robot that can control and fire from the mid-field with a 80%+ accuracy will definitely make it to the finals.
However, as you mentioned, a key defensive player in both the mid and far zone will also be a strong strategy. It will be interesting to see what Week 1 teaches us about the game.
how many mid-field shots in soccer actually score? While certainly not impossible, it’s going to be much more difficult to score from the midfield than from the end - and most of the time, you’ll see midfield shots bouncing out of the goals and the scorers having to pick them up to score.
I’m not sure if I agree with this. the game of soccer and breakaway are very similar, but they are also very different. Correct me if I’m wrong, but the reason why shots in soccer are not scored generally from midfield is because of human capability. It seems unreasonable to expect a person to kick a soccer ball 150 feet accurately into a goal, but I can’t imagine getting a robot to score from 27 feet will be as difficult. Especially this year with vision tracking, teams will be able to “lock on” to goals to increase accuracy.
The key to the game is control of the balls, from possession to zones to the return. If (if) everything goes to plan, 2791’s robot is optimized for maximum ball control. A high traction, powerful, and fast drive secures balls at the drop. The kicker will hopefully make goals from mid range, but we’re aiming to feed a favorable number of balls to our striker(s), even if we don’t score ourselves. The defensive limitations make powerful offensive strategies possible as long as you have midfield advantage.
While the robot is optimized to control balls with long kicks and fighting for the ball drop, a short range kick mode (maybe) and bump climbing ability allow the robot to switch to tough defense and striker positions without much compromise. I’m really happy with the decisions made for the robot, as I think they emphasize facets of the game that will make us a valuable robot to many alliances.
That is, if everything comes together. That will be 2791’s edge this year. I hope.
You bring up a good point. If there is a defender on the goal end it will be very difficult to make the shot. Additionally, most robots will congregate in the mid field making shots much more difficult to make. However, I still believe that there will be some robots that will be able to make goals from the mid field area and these will be the robots that shine at the competition. This would require the robot to quickly control, aim, and fire the ball, which is not an easy task. If the shot is not made, at least the ball is moved from the mid field area to the goal area.
Yes, in perfect conditions the vision tracking helps teams line up to score amazingly well. Now, lets throw in some obstacles… a bump between you and the goal, requiring you to kick the ball pretty hard to get it there… hard enough that the memory foam might bounce the ball back out? A defending robot that may sit right in front of the goal you’re trying to shoot at, blocking any shot. Another midfield robot from the opposition coming over and ramming you, or getting in front of you.
Something our team learned in our first year: If you need precision or a significant amount of time to operate your mechanism, it won’t work as intended. While the vision targets will help you line up nicely, it will still take some time to get lined up and shoot - time the other team can use to harass you and block the shot. Playing defense is, in a way easier than playing offense - all you have to do is get in the way or push the other person around. Defense doesn’t have to have precision, it doesn’t have to be perfectly lined up. Offense does.
In soccer, i can fairly reliably kick a ball from midfield to the goal, if it’s just me standing there. But with the other team chasing me and a goalie standing there, I’m not going to be able to score that way.
If the opponent is dedicating two robots to defend your one, you should have the edge in the match.
In soccer, humans dont attempt midfield shots because a goalie is blocking one goal, and the probability of scoring is low to none.
You have two goals in this game with 1 opposing robot.
If two dominating scorers can score with a great degree of accuracy from midfield, which one do you defend?
This strategy isnt foolproof nor will we see it regulary at regionals. But, wait to you get to CMP.
And if for some reason you dont make a shot, plan B takes into effect where a possible near shooter attempts shots.
There’s a reason why you have chains and memory foam as part of the goal.
I agree with you entirely, especially since I play as a striker or a sweeper in soccer… though I think good defensive teams will have a very tough time getting recognized. My girlfriend put it perfectly: “it’s not much fun watching you play when you play defense, because it only gets exciting if you screw up”.
Our team is going to be more defensively minded I think, and I will be really disappointed if we get written off because we weren’t as noticeable as a high-scoring team.