What is build season?

Have you ever tried to explain Build Season to someone who isn’t a FIRST roboticist?
The reveal day itself is a roller coaster. The emotions that accompany the analysis of the game swing like a chaotic double pendulum: ranging from “What were they thinking?” to “It’s not that bad.”
With the third reading of the game manual, the questions begin: “What do they mean by intermittent or occasional and how does that differ from periodic ???”
Like I said, this is only the first day.

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It’s like an ultramarathon that begins with a high-speed rock climb.

Or if the Tour de France had ten different types of races on different days.


But, you can’t use the same climbing gear as last year!


As in, both figurative and literal climbing gear.


Yes! Usually goes something along the lines of “No this isn’t battlebots…we have 6 1/2 weeks to build, may sound like a lot but it’s not we are all screaming and panicking to get a robot together… it is fun yes… at the end of those weeks we cannot touch the robot…because we aren’t aloud to, at least this season we can though”


The time being when your GPA drops from a 3.5 to a 2.0


It’s actually interesting how I thought about that comment- my immediate reaction was my “student” reaction, which was “relatable”, immediately followed by my “mentor” reaction of “you know you shouldn’t be letting that happen, let’s help you work to get those grades up, and if we need, we should reduce the amount of time you come here”…


That’s how you know it’s REAL

When I describe it to my theater friends I call it 6 weeks of tech week.

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knowing from experience of doing theater it is accurate except the last few weeks of build season are also with dress rehearsals every day and final dress the last 3 days and none of the set is completely done until the final day/bag night. it also is like when the set is not on you are working on it to make it better and just cycling what set pieces you are working on the final dress thing has happened to me at theater. That was not fun for crew

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And then locking up your costumes/props and having no rehearsals for 4 weeks, with the performance happening right at the end of those 4 weeks, on a stage that you haven’t rehearsed on.


Not anymore!

yep that is accurate

Yep. Easy one.

I explain that we get a new game every year at the beginning of January. We build our robot in January and February, then compete at events in March and April. It fun and hard work.

That’s about all they need to know.


That’s true, if they are only asking to be polite.
Usually, they want to know what all of the excitement and hullabaloo is about. And, there is definitely a lot of hullabaloo going on with a touch of pandemonium!