Thoughts on this year's game...

Just wanted to hear your opinions on the issue over the game this year. It is very uneven between goal bots and ball bots since ball bots are most important in the seeding rounds, they don’t play a role at all in the elimination/final rounds. While goal bots need ball bots for the score to get to the final rounds. All the teams have to do is to control the goals in the finals and win… my opinion is that FIRST should have thought of this problem.

I find that the goal bot/ball bot relationship is vital in seeding and elim rounds. We are a very proud ball bot and we use goal bots a lot in seeding rounds and in elim rounds. Actually we played most of our elim rounds in CT with another ball bot and won. So you certainly can’t say ball bots are not used in elims. I think that the best alliance is the alliance that is comprised of both ball bots and goal bots. Either ratio will work fine. Also if the ball bot is also very good at grabbing a goal then that help a lot because then only one goal is needed. We had a match or two in NY where we were alone on the field and all we had to do was grab a goal and fill it with balls- 21 balls and a goal is 31 points easy- thats more than 3 goals eh? I love our ball bot and I love a lot of the other ball bots out there and I really think that it is going to be the ball bot-goal bot alliance that will take it away in FL.

*Originally posted by JoeM121 *
**I find that the goal bot/ball bot relationship is vital in seeding and elim rounds. We are a very proud ball bot and we use goal bots a lot in seeding rounds and in elim rounds. Actually we played most of our elim rounds in CT with another ball bot and won. So you certainly can’t say ball bots are not used in elims. I think that the best alliance is the alliance that is comprised of both ball bots and goal bots. Either ratio will work fine. Also if the ball bot is also very good at grabbing a goal then that help a lot because then only one goal is needed. We had a match or two in NY where we were alone on the field and all we had to do was grab a goal and fill it with balls- 21 balls and a goal is 31 points easy- thats more than 3 goals eh? I love our ball bot and I love a lot of the other ball bots out there and I really think that it is going to be the ball bot-goal bot alliance that will take it away in FL. **

I would not say that you guys are a ball bot. I’d say you’re what RAGE calls a hybrid. Hybrid being a robot that grabs a goal, and balls, but controls the goals very well. I think that is the key to your guys sucess. Since you own any goal you grab, then your ball handling ability can make up for the other 2 goals free on the playing field.

*Originally posted by Lethi86 *
**It is very uneven between goal bots and ball bots since ball bots are most important in the seeding rounds, they don’t play a role at all in the elimination/final rounds. All the teams have to do is to control the goals in the finals and win… my opinion is that FIRST should have thought of this problem. **

I don’t think of it as a problem but more as part of the game challenge!

I think ballhandler’s make the whole game totally interesting and goal-handler are often boring…
Well, our team built a goal-handler and we got some extra features as pads that come down and lift thewheels off the ground so that we can’t be moved, and we got an extension device to send home…

Ballhandlers are awesome, but most of them will have a hard time to go against the strenght of some of the goal-handling robots. Ballhandlers are often times tippy and don’t have te strongest drivetrain but I think that it is even a bigger challenge to build a sucessfull ballhander than it is to build a good goa-handler…
My congrats and respect to everybody who tried themselves with building a ball-handler…

At first this game seemed simple, then we all found out how great it really was and how difficult it is to plan for, good job by first although I would have liked something else (like stairs)

Hehe, I still find it funny that people think ball bots can’t do squat in finals… sigh

A little observation: All the three goal grabs seem to grab pretty slow (at least to the effect that a fast robot can beat them to them)

so… :smiley:

well… our robot is a ball-handling robot and we’re pretty good at it… we could pick up around 35 balls in under 50 sec and it’s great to score a lot of points in the QP rounds but when the finals come around, all the goal handling bots like us have a much less chance of getting pick unless the ball handling bots have enough points to qualify to do the picking. so that’s why i think the game’s a little uneven.

I think that the ‘unevenness’ is intended. We can all agree that the game changes dramatically once the elim rounds begin - and I think FIRST planned on this. Last year’s game had more to do, and a dynamic time frame to do it in. This year, reverting back to the 2v2 style, a ball handler may master the qualifying matches (which is great), but may choose to draft a robot that didn’t do so well in the Q Matches because it would compliment it with torque/something else. At first, this game seemed a bit dull, but it has been growing on me :wink:

ps - MOEhawk (high speed mode) 1.8s to goals at VCU – had to change to low speed due to difficulty in control…

I think it’s time for a new driving surface. For the past 3 years (or more?) it’s been carpet and drivetrains have been very similar. There’s not a whole lot left to think of for getting traction on that carpet…teams have used everything from conveyor belt to tank treads to wheels that rip up the floor.

The only issue i had with the game this year happened during finals. The judges made an “example” of us with JJ… our tether bot… we used it and it went under the corner of a goal by something like, a mm. It was insane and it didn’t obstruct anyone else at all, but we still got DQ’d. It was our 2nd match, we were in the Curie Division, anyone see it? ugh…

After last year’s game, I was glad to see a return to the 2v2 format from 2000, including the rules for determining the qualifiying points from a match (winners get 3x losers’ score).

I was a bit worried when I saw the first qualifying match at Rutgers (two 2-goal robots rushed to the center, grabbed goals, and then slowly spun in circles fighting over the center goal), but this kind of match turned out to be the exception. Most of the matches were very exciting to watch, especially the close high-scoring matches (like our 52-50 victory in the qualifying rounds at UTC).

I felt that this year’s game left more room for strategy than last year (since last year’s lack of opponents led to fewer variables). There was also more pre-determined strategy than in the 2000 season, since we knew our alliance partner and opponents before each match. This allowed us to come up with brilliant (if sometimes unsuccessful) strategies such as the ‘play dead’ strategy we used once against two ball-handlers (it would have worked perfectly if our robots had worked perfectly, but they didn’t).

I am looking forward to seeing what F.I.R.S.T. will come up with for us next year.

*Originally posted by Ameya *
** This allowed us to come up with brilliant (if sometimes unsuccessful) strategies such as the ‘play dead’ strategy we used once against two ball-handlers (it would have worked perfectly if our robots had worked perfectly, but they didn’t).
**

We used a similar “play dead” strategy at Epcot this year. It was really funny, because we fooled the announcer, our opponents, and even a few team members. At the beginning of the match we didn’t move any, and then looked at our robot in astonishment. The announcer even said that “201 is still dead in their home zone” or something to that effect. We waited until there was about a minute left in the match, then took off, grabbed a goal from an opponent, grabbed one from our partner, parked, tethered back home, and won the watch 39-38 and got 114 QP’s.

My biggest problem with this year is that you could lose a very close match with a high score and the winning team got a huge QP score. If two teams both do very well the QP difference should not be so huge. I think they need to rethink how they reward winning teams. It should be more proportional to the margin of victory.

*Originally posted by Alfred Thompson *
**My biggest problem with this year is that you could lose a very close match with a high score and the winning team got a huge QP score. If two teams both do very well the QP difference should not be so huge. I think they need to rethink how they reward winning teams. It should be more proportional to the margin of victory. **

Yeah, definitely. If a team is going to lose, why not give opponets as little as possible. The “get 0 points” was a valid strategy this year, and not very gracious or professional if you ask me.

*Originally posted by Jeff Waegelin *
**

We used a similar “play dead” strategy at Epcot this year. It was really funny, because we fooled the announcer, our opponents, and even a few team members. At the beginning of the match we didn’t move any, and then looked at our robot in astonishment. The announcer even said that “201 is still dead in their home zone” or something to that effect. We waited until there was about a minute left in the match, then took off, grabbed a goal from an opponent, grabbed one from our partner, parked, tethered back home, and won the watch 39-38 and got 114 QP’s. **

You don’t know how lucky you were in that match. Our team (980) was one of your opponents and we lowered our ball dumping basket a little too quickly, leaving one ball in our basket. But the real kicker is that we had enough air in our tanks to just raise the basket up again to dump that last ball. That would have tied the score 39 to 39 but we would have won the tie breaker since we had more balls. What can I say. We just got a little rattled and forgot that we could dump again. It was definitely an unintentional gift. We will remember that match until the dawn of time, and I am sure we will all laugh at ourselves about it each time someone brings it up.

I still think it was great watching the reactions of our team and the audience. It definitely was not an expected tactic. I do agree that you’ll probably remember that match for a long time. As you’ll find out, certain matches will always stick in your memory, for whatever reason.

I definitely enjoyed the match, and I hope we can play again sometime.

*Originally posted by Jeff Waegelin *
**I still think it was great watching the reactions of our team and the audience. It definitely was not an expected tactic. I do agree that you’ll probably remember that match for a long time. As you’ll find out, certain matches will always stick in your memory, for whatever reason.

I definitely enjoyed the match, and I hope we can play again sometime. **

I hope so too. We also enjoyed it, even with our blunder. (Your delayed-action tactic may have startled us and contributed to our amnesia in failing to dump the winning ball.)

Anyway you guys did a great job this year.

We’ll look for you next year, and hopefully we will give you a good run, as either opponents or partners.

This year brought back the competetiveness to the game that was so sorely lacking last year. It allowed the drivers the crashing and pushing that they craved. I think that it was even a step up from two years ago, because of the moveable goals. Since the goals were sooo heavy, teams were forced to go above and beyond what they had done in the past, the 2002 season brought to life the most poverful generation of robots that FIRST has ever seen. The ball aspect was something else also, there were not as many good ball bots as two years ago but the one’s that were good, were very good. As the old and new teams get more experienced I think that FIRST can expect the robots to keep getting better and better, I can’t even wait to see next year.

I also liked the competiveness of this years game.
What I didn’t like was changing the game from strategy to battlebots. IMHO, I think the game should have stayed the same from qualification matches to the finals. There was no strategy involved in the finals. It was mostly whoever controlled the goals. In the qualification matches you had to keep your head about you and keep track of the scores.
I know of no other game where the rules change when you make it to the finals.

Wayne Doenges
puts flame suit on

The game this year was definitely one of the best in as long as i can remember. I also liked the first year game. That was a good one also. But yea… this years was a %%%% good game. It had everything a good game should have and it also left room for some good old teenage bashing fun…