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  • Miscellaneous Game Questions - Answer Thread

    Answers to questions posted pertaining to miscellaneous Game Questions.

  • #2
    <GS2> Particle Scoring Eligibility & Game Manual Part 1 Section 5.3.1

    Section 5.3.1 of the Game Manual Part 1 asks teams to reflect on their Robot's design and the question: “If everybody did this, would the game play be impossible? If the answer to the question is yes, the design component is probably not allowed."


    VELOCITY VORTEX is played with Particles that are Scored in goals and recycled back to the Playing Field for continuous game play. The Game Design Committee's intent is for open recycling, where Scored Particles return to random locations on the Playing Field Floor so that both Robots on an Alliance have an equal opportunity to access, Control, or Possess their Alliance's Scored Particles. A closed recycling game strategy that denies a reasonable opportunity for an Alliance Partner Robot to access, Control, or Possess a Scored Particle is not in the spirit of the FIRST Tech Challenge and is not allowed. Game play with closed recycling of Particles would be impossible and unfair to Alliance Partners. Therefore, Robot designs and/or game strategies that deny their Alliance Partner equal access to Scored Particles, is considered to be a violation of rule <GS2>.

    Comment


    • #3
      Controlling the rotation of the Center Vortex.

      Originally posted by FTC10092
      Question: Is it legal to purposefully control the rotation of the Center Vortex?

      Answer: Yes, Robots may purposefully Control the rotation of the Center Vortex, provided that no other rules are violated. For example, rules <S1>, <G14>, <G15>, and <GS8> constrain how a Robot can legally rotate the Center Vortex.

      Tip from the Game Design Committee: Rule <G14> prevents a Robot from grasping a Game Element. In the context of Controlling the rotation of the Center Vortex, Robot contact with the Center Vortex PVC vertical pole from two or more different directions in the horizontal plane is not allowed. For example, a spinning wheel touching the Center Vortex vertical support is allowed, if it does not damage the PVC vertical pole. Using two or more spinning wheels that interact with the PVC vertical pole from different directions in the horizontal plane violates rule <G14>.

      Comment


      • #4
        Definitions of Open and Closed Recycling Systems

        Originally posted by FTC10092
        Question 1: What is the definition of an open recycling system?
        Question 2: What is the definition of a closed recycling system?

        Answer 1: Open Recycling System - All Robots participating in a Match have a reasonable opportunity to interact with Scored Particles that have randomly returned from a Vortex to the Playing Field Floor.

        Answer 2: Closed Recycling System - One or more cycles of (1) Scoring, (2) capturing, and (3) re-Scoring a Particle in a manner that denies the other Robots in a Match an equal opportunity to capture a just Scored Particle. The following videos of prototype Robots are examples of Closed Recycling Systems for the Corner Vortex.

        i) https://youtu.be/FqhtXVk1eZM?t=5m45s - 5 minutes and 45 seconds into the video.
        ii) https://youtu.be/5FPnng5BVdg

        Robots or game play strategies that have any of the following characteristics are considered to be using a Closed Recycling System:
        i) A Robot created confined area that corrals Scored Particles as they exit a Vortex. This is considered a barrier that restricts access to other Robots.

        ii) A mechanism that reduces the randomness of where Scored Particles return to the Playing Field Floor.

        iii) Controlling a Scored Particle before it contacts the Playing Field Floor or Center Vortex Base.

        Closed Recycling Systems for Scoring any quantity of Particles in the Corner Vortex and/or Center Vortex are not allowed.

        Alliance Partners giving their permission to use a Closed Recycling System does not make a Closed Recycling System legal.


        Tip from the Game Design Committee: Do not parse the game rules and the Game Design Committee's posts in the Game Q&A Forum in an attempt to find a legal ambiguity that justifies a Closed Recycling System for Scoring Particles. The Game Design Committee's intent is simple, all Scored Particles should return without restriction to random locations [subject to the design of the Vortex Particle return mechanisms] on the Playing Field Floor and both Robots on an Alliance should have an equal opportunity to access, Control, or Possess their Alliance's just Scored Particles.

        Comment


        • #5
          &lt;G14&gt; Robots Grasping Game Elements - U Shaped Alignment Tool for the Beacon

          Originally posted by FTC3785
          Rule <G14> states that Robots cannot grasp, grab or attach to a Game Element.

          Question: Is a "U shaped" alignment tool thats fits on either side of the Beacon [it might touch the sides of the Beacon] allowed?

          Answer: Yes, provided that the alignment tool does not damage the Beacon and no other rule is violated. For example, Robot contact with anything outside the Playing Field Perimeter violates rule <S2>.

          Tip from the Game Design Committee: The alignment tool should not extend far enough past the Beacon so that it could contact a volunteer standing near the Playing Field Perimeter.

          Comment


          • #6
            &lt;G14&gt;-Robot Grasping Game Elements: Belt Contact With The Center Vortex Vertical Pole

            Originally posted by FTC9765
            Can the GDC clarify their Tip in post #3 in "Miscellaneous Game Questions - Answer Thread"
            Question: My builders want to touch the Center Vortex PVC vertical pole with a timing belt stretched between 2 pulleys. Their thought is that if the timing belt wraps the pole less than 180 degrees, that this would not violate <G14>, since it would not grab, grasp or attach itself to the pole.

            Answer: The action described violates rule <G14>. The timing belt's multiple points of contact around the PVC vertical pole is considered to be grasping the Game Element.

            Comment


            • #7
              &lt;GS2&gt; Particle Scoring Eligibility - Center Vortex Base

              Originally posted by FTC8390
              The Playing Field Floor is defined as "The surface of the tiles that make up the base of the Playing Field." From this definition, the black base of the Center Vortex is not part of the Playing Field Floor.

              <GS2> says in part "After Scoring, Particles must make contact with the Playing Field Floor before they are eligible to be Scored again."

              Question: May robots pick up Particles from the black base of the Center Vortex and score them without violating <GS2> or must the Particles touch a floor tile first? In other words, should the black base be considered part of the Playing Field Floor for purposes of <GS2> or not?

              Answer: Great question! Robots may collect Particles from the Center Vortex Base and legally Score them without violating rule <GS2>.

              Comment


              • #8
                &lt;GS2&gt; Particle Scoring Eligibility - Center Vortex

                Originally posted by FTC8391
                Post 4 in the Miscellaneous Game Questions Answer Thread states that

                "Robots or game play strategies that have any of the following characteristics are considered to be using a Closed Recycling System: ... ii) A mechanism that reduces the randomness of where Scored Particles return to the Playing Field Floor" and "all Scored Particles should return without restriction to random locations [subject to the design of the Vortex Particle return mechanisms] on the Playing Field Floor."

                Question: We were wondering if the following two strategies are legal. Note that we have a very consistent launcher -- all particles launched from a certain position on the field will follow the same trajectory. Consider a cycle to be the release / scoring of multiple particles that were stored in our robot.

                "Pseudo pseudo closed recycling" (Strategy A): Line up semi-randomly on the field such that particles launched will land somewhere in the center vortex. Given the extreme consistency of our launcher, the particles launched (in a given cycle) will land in the same section of the center vortex and thus land in the same area of the field. However, due to semi-random lineup, the area of the field in which the particles land -- out of seven possible areas -- was not predetermined and will likely differ for each separate cycle.

                "Pseudo closed recycling" (Strategy B): Line up on the field such that particles launched will land in a predetermined section of the center vortex (every cycle will launch to this section) and thus land in the same area of the field, every cycle.

                Thanks for your time.

                Answer: Both strategies are allowed.

                Tip from the Game Design Committee: The Game Design Committee's intent is for Robots to launch, push, place, etc. Particles into a Vortex (Center or Corner Vortex​ as appropriate) and then collect the just Scored Particles by driving as needed to the location where the Particles naturally return to the Playing Field Floor.

                Comment


                • #9
                  &lt;GS10&gt; Controlling or Blocking an Opposing Alliance's Scoring Elements - Particles

                  Originally posted by FTC7785
                  In the Game Manual Part 2 it states the following as it relates to scoring particles:

                  Particle Scoring – Particles Scored into an Alliance-specific Center Vortex earn five (5) points each for the corresponding Alliance (regardless of Particle color. Particles Scored into the Alliance-specific Corner Vortex earn one (1) point each for the corresponding Alliance (regardless of Particle color).

                  The language is similar for both autonomous and driver controlled periods.

                  Question: Is this to be read as teams can purposely score any color particle in their corner vortex and/or center vortex (ie, red gathering blue particles to score) or is this meant to address inadvertent scoring only (ie, red throws a red particle into a blue vortex). We ask for clarification and more specific verbiage indicating that alliances are only allowed to control particles of their alliance color or that alliances can control particles of any color for scoring.

                  Thank you.

                  Answer: Rule <GS10> states that Robots may not Control or Block Access to the opposing Alliance's Cap Ball or Particles. Therefore, Robots cannot legally attempt to Score the opposing Alliance's Scoring Elements.

                  The Particle Scoring text from the Game Manual that is referenced in the team's question, allows Robots to intentionally or inadvertently Score their Alliance's Particles in the opposing Alliance's Vortex goals. When counting Scored Particles, the Alliance goal is what matters, not which Alliance's Particle entered the goal.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    &lt;GS1&gt; Controlling/Possessing Particles - Scoring Multiple Particles Together

                    Originally posted by FTC11111
                    Question: Are robots allowed to score multiple particles together at the same time? For example, can you build an arm to attach to the robot to grab 2 or 3 particles and then score them together.

                    Answer: Yes, Robots are allowed to Score multiple Particles together at the same time. Rule <GS1> allows Robots to Control or Possess any quantity of their Alliance's Particles once the Match begins.

                    Tip from the Game Design Committee: The question references building an arm to collect Particles and then Score them. If the intent is to use the arm to Score Particles in the Center Vortex, rule <GS8> prevents Robots from extending higher than 29 inches (73.6 cm), except during the End Game.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      &lt;GS2&gt; Particle Scoring Eligibility - Interacting With Particles Before Floor Contact

                      Originally posted by FTC8539
                      According to <GS2> After Scoring, Particles must make contact with the Playing Field Floor before they are eligible to be Scored again. Any Particles Scored in violation of this rule will have a Score value of zero

                      Question 1: May the particles touch the robot (or any part thereof) prior to making contact the Playing Field floor?

                      Question 2: Can robots be designed to help direct particles returning from the Center or Corner Vortices toward itself, as long as the particle makes contact with the playing field floor before being possessed and scored?

                      Answer 1: Yes, inadvertent contact with a Robot is allowed. Robots may not Possess or Control a just Scored Particle before the Particle contacts the Playing Field Floor or the Center Vortex Base.

                      Answer 2: No, this is considered to be Controlling a Particle and it is not allowed until after the Particle makes contact with the Playing Field Floor or the Center Vortex Base. See post #4 in the "Miscellaneous Game Questions - Answer Thread" for the complete details.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Manipulating the Direction of Particles Scored in the Corner Vortex

                        Originally posted by FTC7171
                        Our team was thinking of using a barrier to manipulate the direction of the particles scored in the corner vortex. This would ensure that all the particles end up on the same side, which would save us a lot of time.

                        Question: Is this strategy legal?

                        Our idea would basically consist of some sort of barrier attached to our robot. The barrier would not be in contact with the floor.

                        Thank you.

                        Answer: This strategy was declared to be illegal in the "Miscellaneous Game Questions - Answer Thread," post #4.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          &lt;S1&gt; Unsafe Robot and Playing Field Damage - Deciding Which Robot Caused The Damage

                          Originally posted by FTC7468
                          Suppose a robot on alliance A is spinning the center vortex, and a robot on alliance B comes over and either applies something to spin it the other direction, or applies friction to bring it to a stop.

                          Question: If in this struggle for controlling the rotation of the center vortex, it ends up breaking, which alliance is assessed a penalty?

                          Answer: The Penalized Robot is not based on when it started to interact with the Center Vortex. Referees observing the Match will make the determination.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            &lt;G15&gt; Destruction, Damage, Tipping, etc. - Robot Tipped Over By The Center Vortex

                            Originally posted by FTC7468
                            Suppose robot A is attempting to score the cap ball on the center vortex. A robot on the other alliance spins the center vortex around and knocks it into robot A, causing it to tip over.

                            Question: Is the robot that spun the center vortex assessed a penalty for tipping over robot A?

                            Answer: Strategies aimed solely at tipping over an opposing Alliance Robot are not allowed per rule <G15>. Intentional interference with a Robot that Possesses a lifted Cap Ball is a violation of rule <GS11>. The action described in the question is a possible violation of rules <G15> and <GS11>. Referees watching the Match will make the determination if a rule has been violated.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              &lt;G14&gt; Robots Grasping Game Elements - Two Robots Interacting With the Center Vortex

                              Originally posted by FTC7468
                              Two teams on the same alliance are both legally touching the center vortex pole for the purposes of rotating it.

                              Question: Is the combination of the two robots interacting with the center vortex pole considered grasping it?

                              Answer: No.

                              Comment

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