Why has amplification been relatively rare?

With the limited amount of matches I have watched, I’m observing relatively few amounts of amplifications.

I was expecting it to be a lot bigger commanding factor within matches, but from the looks of it, there are only around 1-3 amplifications per match.

Any of you guys have an idea for why that is?

3 Likes

that sounds about right for a average regional/district event. Generally there will be 2 speaker bots and an amp bot on an alliance. 3 amplifications would be 6 amp cycles

2 Likes

Keep in mind this is week one. Typically there are tasks that you often don’t see during the first few weeks and then by district championship time when teams have competed in more than one event you see an increase. We did the math and predicted that there would be a very small advantage to using the amp compared to the risk (scoring in the speaker tends to be faster and more reliable for most teams). It will be interesting to see how the game develops.

10 Likes

Another point to keep in mind is amplification needs to be handled strategically, two notes must be scored in the speaker during one amplification to make it more points per note than just scoring speaker, then adding in a difference in cycle times between the two, and it becomes easier to just score in the speaker

2 Likes

Amp notes are 1 point each.
Regular speaker shots are 2 points each.
Amplified speaker shots are 5 points each.

So for a given 3 cycles you will score 6 points for only speaker but 7 points for two amp cycles and one amplified speaker cycle. Even as the only robot on the field it is worth amplifying if you have a good scoring mechanism.

8 Likes

You are correct, I was graphing in desmos to make the comparison and had an error in my formula. I can still see pure speaker being higher points/time than amplification, that extra 1 point might not be worth the extra time, depending on how fast you can score amp vs speaker

I think a case could be made alliances are using the amp too much. Right now 37% of matches have a point per note (ppn) of under 2. This means the alliance would have scored more points if they just scored in the speaker and ignored the amp. This percent will most certainly decrease as the year progresses but something to consider in the short term.

Across all matches, the mean ppn is 2.008.

6 Likes

Do you have a script to calculate this? I’d love to see the code.

This is correct, but if you are the only robot on the field scoring you have to think: is one more point worth it for a longer cycle-to-cycle average? Over Week 1, teams have higher average cycles time when amping than doing speaker, so oftentimes mathematically the 6 vs 7 point difference doesn’t really pay off.

However, if you have at least one other speaker robot on your alliance, doing amp-amp-speaker cycles can certainly give you more points if you are amplifying their shots as well, potentially doubling your 6 points for speaker-speaker-speaker to 12 for an amp-amp-speaker-speaker w/ an alliance partner adding that last amplified shot.

Being a hybrid bot this weekend, figuring out when to amp and when to speaker was something our Strategy group put a lot of thought into, and it ultimately comes down to what your alliance looks like, and what their needs are. Oftentimes amp-amp-amp, activate co-op, then speaker throughout can be a solid strategy if you are attempting to solo 3-4 RP and do not have any other decent robots on your alliance. Amp-amp-speaker is good with another speaker bot (or if your amp is faster than your speaker cycles).

4 Likes

I’d be curious to see the data, but can this be explained by the co-op bonus in quals? Alliances who score one in the amp for the co-op bonus and then score only in the speaker will have a PPN of less than 2.

3 Likes

For us, it is less points to score in just the speaker. However, due to the low average scores and lack of climbs in week 1, we can run speaker notes much faster to ensure the melody RP.

This is the same concept as running cubes in the bottom row vs scoring in the high row during early weeks last year.

14 Likes

Assuming one cycle takes 10s (which is really fast for a week 1 event)

First Amplification is filled after 20s
Assuming it gets used immediatly (usually teams wait for a team to score into the speaker to use it), another note can be amplified starting at 30s
Second Amplification is filled at 40s
Third Amplification is filled at 60s.

So basically if everyone is cycling perfectly and the amplifications are getting used the second they are able to, it takes just under half the match. Now if an alliance waits 10s after each amplification is loaded before using for robots to get back to be able to shoot multiple at once, suddenly you are at 90s for three amplifications. Now for a week 1, cycles realistically are taking more than 10s, robots break down, etc.

This is generally why you don’t really see more than three amplifications in a match

Decided to play with some numbers from TBA. I can get data about how many notes were scored in the amp, and how many were amplified in the speaker vs un-amplified, and work from there. For any given alliance for which I have data, I added the auto amp notes (max 2, more than that can’t count toward amplification), teleop amp notes, then subtracted one for coopertition to get the maximum possible notes toward amplification. Dividing by 2 and rounding down gives the maximum number of potential amplifications by an alliance, and I can see how many speaker notes were actually amplified to get an approximate notes per amplification. Two alliances have 6, potentially due to scoring errors from the FMS (both had the audience display showing 16M points during the match, so I wouldn’t trust the FMS record keeping on those).

Total alliances: 5306
Alliances with amp potential: 3084
Max amped per potential amp: 6.0
Average amped per potential amp: 1.10
Min amped per potential amp: 0.0
30.80% of alliances with amplification potential underutilized it
0.29% of alliances with amplification potential hit the maximum
Highest potential amplifications: 7 amplifications during 2024mndu2_qm67 by the blue alliance

Alliances with teleop speaker points: 5047
Max percent amplified: 100.00%
Average percent amplified: 16.82%
Min percent amplified: 0.00%

Source

2 Likes

My theory is that since most bots out there are shooters, there hasn’t been widespread strategizing about how best to strategically and tactically use the amp as a scoring multiplier. For example, after nearly every auto period, there is a pile of rebounded notes on the floor that get picked up and scored in the first 10-15 seconds of teleop. If a couple of those had been scored in the amp during auto, that pile of notes would have been 5 point goals rather than 2 point goals.

As a team with an amp bot who is heading to our first competition this weekend, 2363 is happy to see the meta swing towards appreciation of our strategy choice. We had external limitations this year that pushed us away from building a shooter, and we suspected that a fast amp bot might be highly desirable, and possibly a competition winning asset. As such, I’ve been paying special attention to how amplification is being used and misused in the matches I’ve seen online and in person. What we hope to see is one or two good high shooters with a pile of nearby notes that can score multiple 5 point shots during those precious 10 seconds. There are a couple big sins I’ve seen, including:

  • HP presses amp button as soon as 2nd amp note goes in, with nobody ready to score high notes, and no one even gets a high scoring shot before the time runs out.
  • While amplification is active, high scoring robot scores in the amp rather than in the high goal.

Both of these are real forehead smackers for me. Since we are amp specialists, we have been training our HP in optimal amp button pressing strategies, and hopefully our partners will allow us to play the amp station in our matches.

5 Likes

Nice!

Would love to hear more about what strategies you guys use.

Atm, our team is also an amp specialist so we would likely want to communicate to our HP about optimal amp press times.

1 Like