Zone or Man Defense?

Which kind of defense could you see being dominant at competitions? The advantage to zone is you don’t have to travel much for an assist, but if you had a really good defender on your team would it be worth not getting that third assist every time for you defender to stop the other team? We figured a robot with a 5’ blocker that can also catch would do really well against lower shooters, so would it be better for that robot to focus on catching or stopping their opponents offense?

I can’t speak for your robot but I am inclined to believe that teams who block shots with their robot are going to experience problems such as tipping over and parts breaking

very true, last year we saw several blockers with just pvc extensions fall. If the blocker was good and not tipsy, do you think it would be worth sparing those extra assist points?

If your blocker is capable of taking a hit from a ball at full speed then by all means go for it. I am a strong believer in Defense but I see the majority of defense this year being played on assist points. If you can be one of the few who can stop shot balls then that would set you apart from the others

Alright, thank you! So do you think a match would basically look like organized chaos since there are only two balls on the field?:smiley:

I personally think that because ball defense is going to be difficult to play this year, with possession being kinda sketchy, I believe that robot-robot defense will be more effective than playing defense on the ball.

I think this will be the case for many qualification matches but in eliminations it should look like an assembly line :slight_smile: the main problem is going to be alliance partners who are overconfident with their abilities and slow down the rest of the alliance.

I think the matches with basically 6 boxes on wheels will be very interesting! I could definitely see a fast paced cycle in the eliminations. I’m wondering how much stopping power does one robot really have compared to 3 good robots? I feel like a blocker could shut down defense, but keeping from clogging the flow would be interesting. I’m wondering if we will see a strategy of one robot carries and two block for them and they pass off as they go along?

my bet is zone will be the primary style of D

though if you are operating with mechanum the ball D may be feasible

I disagree here.

Most shooters I’ve seen are ri3d style and shoot from a 3’ height. A 5’ robot in front of them can effectively block that shot, and with a little structure, won’t have to worry about damage.

… And as far as man vs zone defense … I believe that while most will play some sort of zone defense, the most effective defenders will be playing man defense and attempting to lock the ball inside a poor performing robot.

Its going to be very interesting on how this pans out especially during the week one events will it be more efficient to have a one man run and gun with two team members playing zone defense or on the other hand will we be seeing a more slow passed passing game between the robots more points per score but less time playing D…

Blocking a robot with a shooter that is 3’ high would be even easier if you have that blocker extend 20" into over their robot? We are using just pvc and some door hinges to bracket and haven’t had any problems yet, as long as we are slowing the ball’s trajectory we are happy, we want the ball to go as far away as possible then keep them from getting the ball.
I almost feel like ball defense might be very successful, meaning basically whoever has the ball you defend and slow progress down as much as possible. You would expect the opposing alliance to focus on you. Causing your two members to advance down the field?
Imagine what a match with 3 good shooting robots, against three basically box on wheels robots? the 3 box on wheels robots actually have a good chance to slow down the other alliance quite a bit! I can imagine we will see several matches that are just major clogs most of the time. Then to get out of this one robot would pass the ball in the air causing everyone to go after it. Basically being one big mess, that would definitely be interesting!

Why do you have to play man defense to do that?

Canon, a very sensible post…you are thinking…::safety::

Canon, you may need to reinforce your drive system with 1/2 diameter aluminum between the drive train because that 1/8 aluminum can bend very easily if you are playing defense

I believe that you play man defense against any robot that can only eject the ball from 1 side, where you lock the ball in their robot and take them for a ride across the field, effectively shutting down the opposing alliance until the ball can be freed.

That’s what I’m calling man defense. It’s not played in any particular zone and can (should) be played all over the field.

Drivers will need to be acutely aware of their machines weaknesses (as well as their opponents weaknesses)

“Zone defense” doesn’t literally just mean sitting in a specific spot. Many strategies will call for you to “man up” against the target near your “zone” of the field. You can effectively play a shutdown defense on a ball carrier with a zone scheme, rather than a man-on-man scheme. What you’re talking about it more of a tactic or method of playing defense against a particular robot, rather than an overall defensive scheme.

I feel like this game puts a lot on drivers, but it is very hard to practice for what a match is going to look like. Being a driver I know I have make quick decisions and make the right ones. The drivers also have to be able to look ahead and weigh out what might happen, decide what to do, and then preform well. They will also need to know how long it takes for their opponent to shoot, there are just sooo many logistics that will make driving so much fun this year:D !

Just to be clear.

Zone Defense: stay in the blue zone and wreak havoc until the robots moved to the white.
Man Defense: Follow 1687 around and make sure they have no chance to be of any sort of value to the alliance.

Like Hockey right?

Anyways, i think Zone defense will be more prevalent in matches only because it still allows you to be in the zone when necessary. i can definitely see a common strategy be robot 1 grab the ball shoot it to robot 2 over the truss then play zone D, robot 2 catch ball (or more likely grab it) and score then play zone D, Robot 3 slow down the Blue alliance (because our robot looks best in red so were red :D). robot 1 and 2 may switch with robot 3 if 3 happens to be in a better position and also its robot 3’s duty to also draw defense away from the ball carrier.(ie drive ahead and take the hit so robot 2 can move up) most robots will be very good 1 and 2’s but i think its going to take a fast drive and great drivers to really get an effective 3.

just some food for thought.

Yes, but I’d also like to add in ball defense
Ball defense: follow the ball around, and wreak havoc on whoever has it, 1687 or 4490, or 3937.

The problem with a zone defense is a good offense could beat it by double teaming, I feel like if all the robots stayed in their zone it would work, but the reality of it is that that probably won’t happen? If you took a defensive strategy the whole game you could just follow the ball around, or play man causing no scoring, so if your auto score was better than theirs you could beat them pretty easily. It really isn’t that hard to keep a robot from advancing, so for me I think a mix between zone and ball defense will be very successful. If you put your best defender on the ball, and your two shooters do the zone/ scoring. Or you could do a blocker and ball strategy and have one defender playing ball, then the two other members playing offense with blocking, so one carries to truss while other blocks for it, then the blocker goes and catches the ball, or obtains it then shoots while the other member blocks for them. Basically it needs to be a very flexible plan, to where your alliance members will help without being told. So the drive team will need to be constantly watching both balls first, then their alliance members.