This post was ghost written by Anomaly.
Is BO1 really happening at worlds?
Yesterday, my teammate and I filmed and uploaded our worlds reveal. Everything was working perfectly. Since then, a solenoid cable and a potentiometer have both blown, our vex keys have disconnected for no reason, and repeated robotC errors have forced me to manually update firmware. My point is not that my team’s robot is inconsistent or that it can never work at peak performance. But this is a robotics competition with imperfect robots, buggy sensors and cables, poor wireless connection, and a fair amount of sheer luck.
We have seen multiple, overlapping, and repeated disconnections, including in Finals 1 of Create US Open and in World Finals 2 last season. Neither of these matches were replayed despite overwhelming evidence that both disconnects were match affecting. We have seen various robotC glitches result in robots being unable to move all match, as happened to 62 in division quarterfinals in SS. We have seen gyros, encoders, motors, wires, and even cortexes fail. 6007 lost a regional competition in February because of a blown cortex. We’ve even seen referees making decisions not based on the game manual- think 62 state disqualification at Socal States. All this is to say, even a perfectly built and tuned robot will not be 100% consistent.
Further, this system adds the 9th-16th alliances simply to be mowed down by higher seeded teams. At regional competitions, the 1st or 2nd alliance wins nearly 80% of the time, while the 8th alliance wins a mere 2%. Adding 8 more alliances even further down simply makes 8 more doomed alliances that will be eliminated easily in R16 or quarterfinals.
Beyond the merits, the community has spoken nearly unanimously and with great vigor against BO1. Vex is clearly not a democracy. However, pissing off the few thousand most dedicated students at the core of the program at the biggest event of the season after we have invested thousands of dollar and hours is absolutely absurd. Paul Copioli said in a post a few weeks ago that many of us may choose to leave the program, and that is fine. Newsflash: it’s not. You may notice Jason Morella is no longer around.
GDC, on behalf of the community I’m giving this one more shot. Bring back 3rd alliances for all I care, have 12 captains and give the top 4 seeds a by, limit alliance selection to 8 alliances of 2, do whatever you need to do. Just take BO1 out of the equation.