Why is "defense" allowed in FRC?


In reality, it would of became a large safety hazard.

Stacking totes, with or without defense, isint exactly the funnest thing to watch. Yes, i have seen 2003.


I don’t think that you understand FIRST’s message. FRC wants students to think of unique designs to complete the task because that’s how we need future engineers to think. In 2013, teams thought of the ingenious idea to use fans to block Frisbee shots. The thing to understand is that the task isn’t necessarily to score well. It’s to seed high, and win whatever competition you are at.

Coopertition doesn’t mean stop playing the game. In some games it does have an element of working with your opponents. But commonly it’s helping everyone and making sure that everyone learns the valuable skills that FRC has to offer. That’s why plenty of teams have students and mentors designated to helping other teams compete at the best of their ability. On 1678, it’s an honor to be on our helper team, “Citrus Service”. We pick students for that before we decide who will be working with us for competition.

We want to help teams compete at the best of their ability. If we play a team in finals and they outplayed us, out-strategized us, etc. That’s great for them! They completed this years challenge better than us.

Good luck this year!


Honestly, I think 2018 was the first time they used a cube as a game piece correctly.


In 2014 our robot was literally ripped in half under heavy defensive play in the Utah quarterfinals. Teams 399 and 1619 both hit us at opposite sides, tearing our superstructure off. Representatives from both teams proceeded to assist us in getting our robot back on the field (the bottom half at least), and 1619 bent over backwards to help us remake our entire robot frame for the Colorado Regional (I’m sure 399 would have too, if they had not been in California). Those two teams, against whom we played so hard, became some of our best friends in all of FRC. And Aerial Assault remains my personal favorite game in FRC history.


I would argue that Power Up was sorta like this. In some matches if one alliance couldn’t do the scale, there was nothing they could do to win. They weren’t allowed to defend in that small zone at the scale, and all they could do then is fight over the switch, but even if they gained control of both switches, they’d only be even in point-per-second gain with the opposing alliance


Because it makes the game interesting to watch.


Yes, I was trying to find non FRC examples from well known games. Power Up is close but Recycle Rush is the most egregious about no defense.


Purposefully damaging a robot is not considered defensive play (see G19). There are a number of rules limiting defensive play to prevent it from becoming completely incapacitating (G17-G20).

It is important that teams consider defensive strategies when designing their robots. Personally I find that effective defensive play leads to more exciting matches and more strategic variety.


Defense wins championships. That’s why.


The purpose of FRC is not to see who can build the best robot. Its purpose is to use fierce competition with an academic tone to inspire highschoolers.

Allowing strategic defensive play greatly enhances that.


FIRST is a mentorship program.
FIRST is a life preparation program.
Sometimes life plays defense.
Be Prepared.


Can we just end the thread on the above note? Such great advice.


FredK, FRC has two objectives.

The first is to design robots that take into account real world circumstances in which “random” interference comes into play. Designing robots for a warehouse is fairly straightforward if the warehouse is kept unobstructed. Designing an autonomous vehicle requires being able to avoid moving people and objects that are externally controlled. Defense is just another version of those types of interference. If a team is trying to design a robot that runs solely in unobstructed space, they are designing a robot that will be useful in only a narrow range of applications.

The second is to build camaraderie among teams in the same manner as other competitive sports. There are no team sports in which defense does not come into play. Playing defense is integral to developing that camaraderie by giving all teams a common objective. Even the 2015 FRC game had defense, even if it was played only in the first 0.1 of second to grab cans.

Your team apparently has not fully grasped these concepts. I strongly urge you to discuss this broader set of issues with your team so that they have a better understanding of the goals and means of FIRST and how these apply to the world that your team is being prepared to face.


The 2015 game is the most recent example of how playing defense (grabbing cans in the first 0.1 seconds) led to a chokehold strategic win. So long as an alliance could make 5 stacks and they could grab 3 cans, they were automatic winners.


pairs tennis? although i wholeheartedly agree with you


You defend the ball from a second bounce. Imagine tennis without opponents whose sole goal is to not let you bounce a ball twice on your side.


Returning the ball is playing defense in tennis. Maybe the closest example is relay running and swimming, so there are a couple of exceptions, but those exceptions are cases where individual efforts are linked together to create a “team”.


Bowling leagues?


good thinking, i never thought of it like that, NOTE: I have never played tennis competitively, so this probably sounds quite stupid to some.


Back at the CT State Championships in 2018, my team played defense to counter the opposing alliance in Finals 3, which was probably one of the deciding factors in helping us win. Defense can make cycle times go longer and making it super un-efficent.

An example would be my team again from 2018. We put ourselves in the way of the switch, between the opposing side of the scale and the human player wall. This gave the opposing alliance two choices: Go all the way around to get another cube, or try to go through us and get penalties. Both caused a long cycle time and allowed our alliance to stack multiple cubes on the scale when they were still getting one. By the time they got back to their side of the scale, we had placed so many cubes on our side that we went and shut down their switch and stopped their inflow of points. This allows for creative strategies to come around. I wonder what 2019 has in store for defense options, because my team will probably act upon it. :slight_smile: