Violations of C8 unnoticed and rewarded by Referees


I posted my thoughts on this in the other thread: Immediate and necessary rule change!

TL;DR, I think something needs to be fixed.


So, you should be willing to own that decision. Be sure to approach the head ref at your next competition with this message:
“We understand crossing to the other side while extended is a penalty. We understand having two defenders on the other side is a penalty. We understand that causing other teams to commit fouls is against the rules. Regardless, our defensive strategy is to push offensive robots to our side of the field, even if this causes them to commit penalties. And, to be clear, if you see us do this, it’s not an accident. It’s our defensive gameplay strategy.”


There is definitely a need to address what is C8 and what isn’t.

Either allow the pushing robot to shove them AND allow the pushed robot to come back with no penalties (within reasonable time)

OR the pusher gets the foul.

I come from a martial arts background (coaching, competing and reffing) and the ref in matches is instructed that they should be influencing the match as little as possible. If both athletes are breaking rules (of equal consequence) at the same time they don’t do anything (no fouls). (Again within reason). Let the robots play the game. Let them shove, but don’t penalize people for doing nothing but getting shoved.

To me this seems like the easiest solution.


Completely own it.

Don’t have to be extended

Not forcing a penalty

Yep. We’re not forcing their defensive bot to stay on our side and their robot does not have a right to our side. . As long as they stay on their side there’s no penalty. They can choose to adapt their strategy to that. Otherwise, the rules say one robot on the opposing side, too bad for them that now their best offensive bot is now playing defense.


Where do you draw the line then? Can I also “accidentally” ram you into my rocket knocking off a hatch and giving myself a RP? cause I was just trying to stop you from scoring?


Nothing about my strategy is an accident and I wont pretend to the refs that it is so.

And from another thread:

I’m not alone in my thinking. It’s the responsibility of the defensive robot on your team to be aware of the situation and get back fast. Just because a defender is on our side doesn’t mean they get to stay on our side. I think that’s what a lot of people are missing in this particular situation.

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Fields, I see where you are coming from. I don’t agree, but I understand your argument. Setting aside the question about having two defenders on the same side, which is being debated in other threads, what do you think about this defensive strategy? Identify an opposing robot which cannot retract back inside their frame perimeter after sandstorm. Push them to your side of the field, and block them from returning to their side of the field. Is this a C8 violation?


Now that is a good question.
I’ll think on it a bit and respond again.


Just saw your response. Completely agree. If this interpretation is allowed to stand, the game has changed from an offensive scoring game to a pushing contest.


This one IS more in the grey and I’m not going to have a perfect argument here.
I would lean more to a no call on the C8 due to the questions below. (I will still try to reason this one out separately too, it’s a real head scratcher and I may change my mind)

Can I design my robot in such a way that any interaction with it will draw a foul?
Similar to a question in past years, if I park in front of your player station and hit the e-stop (strategic or otherwise), should I be penalized for the first bump when you try to get past me in the HAB or every bump?


I’m still trying to understand the word “Intent” I guess.

As far as I’m concerned, you have shown your intent is to have the other team get a foul.

But you are PHYSICALLY forcing another bot to break a rule. Who does the rule get called on? Watch the videos, the ref is not pointing at the defense bot when these events happen, they are pointing at the robot being force to cross the line. The ref is not calling these fouls in a way that fits your argument.


SHOULD they be pointing at the defense bot? They could point at no one and just wave their flag, but then your coach would not know what the foul was for, in this case a second robot crossing the field.

Back to the quote again.
The foul is not applied to the team, but the alliance. If the team received a card, this would be a stronger argument. We would be forcing the alliance to adjust. If we prevented the alliance from avoiding the foul then we would be at fault.

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I’m still thinking I would have a no call as it is the responsibility of the team to account for the possibility to be pushed to the other side (though this seems missed by nearly everyone including myself until recently). I cannot claim sanctuary by designing my robot in such a way that it could not retract its limbs.

That said, I do think it would be poor sport to single someone out with the intent to rack up foul points.

Now the trick is proving someone is doing this. If they have someone trapped, are they doing it to rack up fouls or to hinder your best scorer. In my strategy previously it would be for the latter.


I still feel like the whole subject is FAR too subjective. Intent is a hard thing to judge from an outside perspective.

Let’s say your on Red have 2 scoring bots on the right side of the field, basically blockading that side of the field. Blue Defense bot is playing stellar defense against these 2 scoring bots keeping them from getting back to the loading station.

Blue has a scoring bot on the Left side of the field and Red defense bot then pushes the blue scoring bot onto the red side of the field. Now there are 2 blue bots on red side. Blue scorer can’t get back cause it’s being pushed by red defense, and blue defense can’t get back because of the unintentional “blockade” that’s formed on the right side.

Now what’s the call? Blue is being forced into a foul by the red ALLIANCE now. I understand blockading is not a foul but now both blue bots are being “forced” to be on red side.

Again this seems like the bot responsible for this situation is Red defense bot and therefore should be the one receiving the foul.

Or, like I said before, No foul at all until blue doesn’t seem to be making an effort to come back over the line.


This would be a C8. The blockade is unintentional but the alliance should be aware of their teammates and the pushing bot is certainly intentional.


See that’s why this is difficult.

How do you expect a ref to call that correctly? Are we talking split seconds? How long is that blockade have to be there before and after the bot crosses the line? How is one ref suppose to see all that information?


It is difficult to be sure.

Especially with that stupid cargo ship hampering the refs view and they’re not going to get it right every time. I’m certainly not going to argue it or say it’s perfect.

There are likely many other scenarios similar to this that can be reasoned out, but catching it will be the trick.


Then shouldn’t no call be the correct call most of the time?

If I’m a ref and I can’t say for certain that a rule is clearly been broken, or who is responsible and what rule has been broken at what time, then I shouldn’t be penalizing anyone.

That’s been my point. If I’m a ref, I can’t tell your intent on shoving that robot is to stop scoring or to draw a foul. I also can’t tell (in that moment) that scoring bot isn’t trying to draw a foul on you by allowing themselves to be pushed. I can’t tell anything that has the word “intent” in it. Therefore as a ref I should wait and see what happens. If you push that scoring bot all the way to the HAB zone, you are clearly doing more then stopping them from scoring so C8 call. If scoring bot (or the other bot in that zone) doesn’t run out ASAP after being pushed then double defender call. If you don’t push them too far and they leave right away, no call required.

You can’t immediately call it one way or the other.

EDIT: I mentioned it in the other thread, but as someone who competes, coaches and refs in martial arts, one of the major rules of a ref is to “influence the match as little as possible”. You there to ensure a clean match and the safety of the competitors, Not decide the winner and loser. If there are more foul points scored then game points scored then something is wrong.


I think the premise of this thread may be incorrect. If a team playing defenses pushes a scoring bot from the second team into the opposite sector and there is no defender then there is no foul. But then if the second team sends over the defense, this then becomes a foul on someone. So who is causing the C8 foul? Isn’t the second team sending over the defender causing the first team to incur a foul in that situation?

I believe the proper interpretation is that the first team should not have to track whether the second team has a defender playing on the other side. That means that the team sending over defenders needs to keep track of what’s happening to their other alliance mates. They can prevent the foul by retreating to their home side. The other interpretation would require that team to quit playing their core strategy.

In addition, the pushing defense can be a form of counter defense. What’s wrong with that?

I think this issue is open to a much broader discussion.

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Teams shouldn’t be required to check if their alliance partner is getting pushed at all times. If you’re playing defense on someone, there will be many situations where you won’t be able to react in time to a pushing match.
I think the obvious call here is to not foul anyone as long as the pushed robot is making an attempt to get back to the correct side.