What do FIRST do right in St. Louis?

After seeing the alarming reacting from the post I made after the Houston which can is linked below I decided to make a St. Louis Version

For those who attended the St. Louis Championship what aspects of the did you most enjoy or what improvement added value which you like to see in future Championships

This time around I am going to specific with my wording to direct the focus of the thread to highlight the things FIRST ** successfully** did or changed for the better. Overall FIRST did a lot of right between the two champs so but I want to focus on the parts specifically at the St. Louis Champs not for the umbrella aspect of Champs (ex. Chairman’s Finalists)

Personally, I really liked the entertainment between the Einstein matches. Definitely added to the overall production of final matches

Biggest improvement: announcing Chairman’s after finals 1 so there is still an audience to see FIRST’s most prestigious award presented

Chairman’s videos during finals instead of parodies!

Watching from home, the camera work before and after the Einstein matches (and the whole closing ceremony) was excellent. Steadicam on the field made provided excellent video during the introductions. (The multiplex layout during the matches was definitely an upgrade over Houston, but I would have liked to have seen a split screen of each hopper/boiler during the finals.)

^^^Hot Take^^^

I don’t see a problem with announcing Chairman’s last as long as it’s made clear (i.e. by recognizing each finalist during the round-robin matches and reminding the audience not to go anywhere after the finals are done) that that’s the plan. I actually think Chairman’s should be the last thing to happen, since it’s the most prestigious award (and more important than who wins on the field).

Matches ended nearly 3 hours faster than Houston.

Certainly doesn’t seem that way when the championship winners are given confetti and commotion and the finale, while the chairman’s winners are squeezed in between matches and simply awarded.

But I don’t have a better solution, so don’t mind me. Just complaining.

I don’t disagree that there SHOULD be more fanfare to celebrate both the finalists and the Chairman’s Winner; however, I still stand by my point that this was a huge improvement over Houston where there was almost no one left in the stands by the time 3132 was presented their award.

I am happy for both teams as well as all CCA finalists this year and hope that in future years winner are given an even better reception.

I think St. Louis showed that FIRST listens to our feedback. Many improvements were made and I thought the event was stellar.


I think it was the perfect end to an amazing host city. Thanks St. Louis!

Camera work was significantly better on a few fields and Einstein. I had a lot of production complaints, but those can’t be easily fixed. Audio was very hit or miss, FIRST needs to make sure audio engineers are manning the mixers so we don’t have feedback, level, or volume issues. Some fields were painful while others were quite pleasant.

Einstein was interesting overall. Could do better on basic cues and audio stuff, but otherwise it was pretty good. The big screen had a live switcher view while the screens in the VIP room had a basic split screen view. Steadicam was interesting, not an impressive operator but a cool view, it was annoying when the MC started talking before he was in position. I enjoyed the camera views a bit more, because they weren’t switching erratically from what I could tell (a bit tough to see the big screen from my location).

Otherwise I’m much happier with the execution. If the trend keeps up I’ll be really happy with it. Sad to see the venue go, but some good things must come to an end.

I hate to be so general but at least from home everything looked better. The entertainment before Einstein was much better, camera work was much better, Einstein ran smoother, in glad chairmans was presented between matches, it ended on time. There were many significant improvements since one week ago, hats of to FIRST.

Only complaint, I’m not sure how it was at the event by every time woodie or someone at the podium spoke you could not hear them at all.

This was the biggest thing for us. Our team watched the matches as a group and just couldn’t get over how intense and amazing the cinematography was. The on-field camera’s and boom shots had an amazing affect.

This was the first time at the finale that I COULD hear Dean Kamen speak!

Every bit of feedback that we gave last week seemed to be taken to heart. Honestly I felt like they did almost everything right.

They messed up Einstein seating for teams who made it although I think that got mostly resolved. They also had a trampoline performer almost break his legs but I guess that isn’t their fault.

Overall it was a solid event. It was my first worlds with a team and a great send off from Frc as a student.

They informed us well of no running in the pits!

In all seriousness, the playoffs seemed very smooth transitioning between matches during alliance selection. All the volunteers seemed very helpful. After having an issue with our robot ejecting our battery during Einsteins (still unsure of how it was able to move that much and undo the Velcro) and causing some minor damage in the electrical area, a CSA was there looking over everything with us and giving us input on ways to fix things. With their help, we were able to get everything in working order and be back in the next match. There were other cases of volunteers helping us out quickly during playoffs, where every second can matter.

Watching the webcast, I think I saw that FTC Inpsire Award winners got medals with the FTC logo and negative space around it (like this old version), that is very much like how the medals used to be. Though for FRC, this blog post showed they would be different (but not getting any this year, I can’t verify).

I like the old school medals because they’re unique.

Only gripe was that the field was off in a corner to make room for a pop up x games, leaving half the audience with little to no view. The field should have been the center of the floor.

Other than that and the seating hiccup, I thought that the production was much better and much less cringe inducing than Houston.

Overall I think the event went really smoothly. I like how Einstein was it’s own field for the first time in a while (this was also true for Houston). I also like how they added a monitor above the alliance driver station side chute (not sure if they had this at Houston), to minimize any advantages given to alliances with a better view of the jumbotron.

One thing that did go slightly wrong was the situation with paper airplanes (just going to put it here, as I don’t see a what went wrong thread). According to this blog post, throwing anything from the stands was explicitly prohibited. It’s very hard to have FIRST enforce a rule like this, but they can do their best to make it loud during the competition, so that mentors can guide their students and other students not to throw planes. The magnitude of airplanes thrown was nowhere near past years, so I do commend FIRST on that, but it was annoying to have the odd plane hit a teammate on the back of the head, or even get extremely close to disrupting Einstein.

Perhaps they needed the pit announcer to come to Einstein and announce “No throwing paper airplanes”? That would surely solve the problem.

FIRST listened. For all the problems of Houston St. Louis was enjoyable to watch (liked the four views) the flow was much better. St.Louis was a better product.

In my opinion, having almost zero downtime between matches cut down on the airplane situation by a huge margin. It was pretty much a tolerable amount of planes. I watched Einstein two years ago for recycle rush, and the planes were horrible, mostly while you waited ten minutes for the next match. Kids got so bored that year, they’d throw the whole 80 page program over the handrail just to watch the reaction of the person they gave a concussion to.

The only thing that annoyed me is how many very poorly designed planes there are. Once you make a plane that goes 3 rows and drops straight down, you should find another activity like tapping your foot, twiddling your thumbs, or touching your own eyeball.

FIRSTers should be able to make better paper airplanes.

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