Violations of C8 unnoticed and rewarded by Referees


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.


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.


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.


Unfortunately, that’s not how things are currently being called. Because their goal was usually to stay where they were (on their side of the field), and to get back as quickly as possible so they can score, even if it weren’t for the foul points.


that may be the better solution but that will require a rule update.


At the Canadian Pacific regional this past weekend, in our semis match 2, we got 21 points in penalties, most of which were caused by the defensive robot pushing us and our teammate across the center line.
I agree with the part that defense is part of the game, and that is perfectly fine. However, I think no penalties should be given if we didnt drive there purposely when another teammate of ours is already passed it.
On another note, they called penalties on our defensive partner for touching the other team’s rocket while defending the other alliance. When we asked, they said its essentially a safe zone and each time it occurred, it was a 3 pt. penalty.:roll_eyes:
Instead of arguing the calls since we already won, we adjusted our defensive strategies for a clean but effective finals match with 0 penalties in finals matches 1 and 2. Not bad considering the #2 alliance got a top 4 pick of ours in the second round and scored 88 and 89 points with no penalties in the semis.
We needed our rookie team 2nd pick to play effective defense in order to win.


Pushing robots to the other side of the field while they have a defender occupying it being a foul on the pushed robot seems to be at odds with the blue box of G18:

For example, a Red ROBOT parked such that a Blue ROBOT is against its Blue ROCKET and the Red CARGO SHIP LINE (while the opponent’s partner is already on defense per G9) could be considered pinning because the opponent ROBOT cannot cross the Red CARGO SHIP LINE without violating G9.

If this is a pin, why isn’t pushing a robot up against (and over) the CARGO SHIP LINE not also a pin? That seems inconsistent.


If a team playing is playing legal defense with one bot and offense with their other two bots, there is no foul. But then if the second team sends over a defender and this defender pushes one of the offensive bots across the line, this then becomes a foul on someone. So who is causing the C8 foul? Isn’t the second team pushing the offensive robot across the line 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 about to push one of the first team offensive bots where they don’t intend to go. That means that the pushing team needs to keep track of what’s happening to their own side of the field. They can prevent the foul by not forcing offensive bots to cross a line where they don’t intend to go. The other interpretation would require that team to quit playing their core strategy.


C8 has had problems that extend back earlier than just this year. I specifically remember instances where last year opposing teams would shove an opposing robot under their scale to cause them to draw fouls.

I definitely think something has to be changed about this year’s instance of the problem as well.


Currently I believe the double defender rule says they invite a foul if any part of the offensive bots bumpers cross the plane of the cargo ship line. I believe changing the rule to if the offensive bot crosses fully across the cargo ships line should help.

If a defender pushes an offensive robot such that the entire robot is crossing the line, I would say that’s intentional. The cargo ship line is past the midline, and even further from the rocket. Then to also push the entire robot across would be doing more than just disrupting scoring. This wouldn’t change the two defender rules intent of having only one defender at a time. This type of change would just give a little wiggle room for refs to recognize what’s going on and still allow defense to be played on a scoring robot.


Saying you can’t react in time is not exactly a valid argument. If you can’t react in time, then you are too deep in their zone.

This would clear things up a LOT. Touching the line is a no foul to foul with no wiggle room. But seeing your teammate getting pushed over the line is the difference between instant foul to a couple seconds to react foul.

Edit: I double checked the rules it it does say if the bumpers break the plane which I think should be changed to fully crossing. Just scoring on the cargo ship puts you precariously close to midfield. So in effect, if you want to score (what should be an easy spot) you need to pull back deference every time to avoid a possible foul.


Compare FRC’s rule C8 to FTC’s rule G19. The FTC rule would serve us much better since the referee can easily observe that the opposing robot caused you to commit an action and therefore no foul is assigned. In the FRC rule, the referee has to call the two defenders foul unless they conclude that it’s a “[strategy] clearly aimed at forcing the opposing ALLIANCE to violate a rule.” Why does the FRC rule include that clause about clear strategic intent? It’s so much easier to have a middle ground where the referee simply doesn’t call the foul if the action was caused by the opponent, regardless of strategic intent.

G19 Forcing an Opponent to Break a Rule – The actions of an Alliance or their Robots shall not cause an opposing Alliance or Robot to break a rule and thus incur Penalties. Any forced rule violations committed by the affected Alliance shall be excused, and no Penalties will be assigned.

C8. Don’t expect to gain by doing others harm. Strategies clearly aimed at forcing the opposing ALLIANCE to violate a rule are not in the spirit of FIRST Robotics Competition and not allowed. Rule violations forced in this manner will not result in an assignment of a penalty to the targeted ALLIANCE.
Violation: FOUL. If egregious or repeated during the MATCH, YELLOW CARD.


I’ll add this, independent of what the actual rules might say: if a metagame features forcing opponents to commit fouls as a way of scoring points, that’s super lame. A game with that characteristic is in need of a fix.


On another thread, this reply sort of negates your willingness to penalize defenders.