Accidently crossing the wall or bar

At a competition last week the anyone crossing over the wall or bar was facing a DQ. I understand purposefully crossing should be a penalty but if it is done inadvertently should they be called out.

Referring specifically to the “fence line” as it is called in the game manual ( I believe this is what you are calling the wall or bar ) G14 is pretty clear on this topic. Although it may seem to be a harsh penalty, teams are responsible for their own robots, whether the violation is inadvertent or not.

As a referee in an early season local event, I would be inclined to give a warning to the team the first time it happens in the event. As the season goes on, and at States/Regional/World Championship, I would not expect the referees to be so lenient.


I really think vex should allow event partners to add double 2x Caped pins to the field so that the field can’t break.

I’m a little confused, how would these pins keep a team from inadvertently crossing the fence line?

To keep the fence grounded, cause what he is trying to say is that the pole keeps on breaking and that causes the team to cross over it.

Not something I’ve observed yet, but we have an IQ tournament coming up for which I’m head referee, so I’ll keep an eye on it. Thanks for the heads up.

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I haven’t seen a fence “break” yet this season. Just referring to parts of a robot that might cross the vertical plane of the fence line by accident.

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Oh well, at our comp last week we were facing the fence breaking issue.

There are pegs holding the wall down in between the wall plates. When the wall is removed from the field and reinstalled later, these pegs often get retracted and are no longer engaging the field. It is quite a pain to deal with as the wall plate needs removed from one side to access. If the wall was breaking, this may be one area to look in.

As for GDC, it would be great if they would take in to account removing game elements and replacing them (simulating moving a field from one location to another) as part of their development testing.


Well, yes? Accidentally breaking a rule is still breaking a rule. Teams should be called out for that.

Taking it apart, loading it into a small car like a Nissan Cube or Honda Accord, unloading, carry up 3 flights of stairs and then assembling it. Repeat 6 times. Thats the true test cycle, and a number of games would have never seen the light of day.


I mean, if you were reading correctly, its due to the pins not being strong enough that why its breaking.

Uh, he never said that as far as I can see.

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@Foster @SCFarrell @kmmohn

I sent a Q&A on robotevents,G14, What if the Fence detached from the field? : Robot Events

Few items: no one has indicated anything breaking other than yourself. The OP is talking about inadvertent crossing the bar, which is a penalty. Whether or not a driver inadvertently or purposely breaks the vertical plane while not in the expansion zone is irrelevant, it is a clear violation of the rules.

As for the Q&A you submitted, you have added the wrinkle of the field not being assembled properly to your scenario. First, EPs should make sure the field is assembled properly. That is their job. We all know this is sometimes difficult due to moving fields from practice/storage to competition areas, so it is great to teach your roboteers to check the field before signaling they are ready for play. Once the match starts, they are bound by the rules to not damage the field and to not cross the vertical plane unless in an expansion zone. I am not sure what you are hoping they will say in response to your Q&A, but my guess is they will say something to the effect of “don’t break the rules”.


One of the problems is that IQ is for both first-year and experienced teams. Yes, rules are rules, but DQing a team of nine-year-olds at their first competition was pretty harsh. Perhaps we give warnings at the beginning of the season and advance to violations and DQs as the season progresses. I guess I’m thinking like an elementary school teacher not a Middle School Coach right now.

At the competition, I’ll have to think like a certified head referee…

Many (most?) referees will be a little more lenient giving warnings at first, especially early in the season. I expect after the New Year, there will be little warning. At our event this Saturday, I will likely give the warning “if you cross the fence line again, your team will receive a DQ,” and then you can be sure I’ll follow through the next match with DQ as necessary. An official warning should be enough to understand not to do it, even for an elementary-aged team, especially if the procedure is made clear during the Driver’s meeting. So, before a DQ, the team would (should) have read the rules, then heard it again from me before the competition starts, then hear a verbal warning, and only after that would they receive a DQ.


This is more than fair. Thanks for responding.

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We are hosting a league, which is a great way for teams to get experience with the game before the Saturday tournaments start, and the problem has been teams with parts that overhang on the back - like a dump truck or ramp. When they turn around the part could swing over the fence and may be in violation.

The first week we explained the rules in the drivers meeting and issued warnings. The second week we made more noise when the bot was close. Week 3 is tomorrow and we will advise the teams that we will be calling DQs if they hover over the fence outside of the expansion zone.

We slowly ramp up the expectation, plus 20 matches are much more forgiving.


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