Answered: Defense: Mobile goal pushing and hoarding

Hello, I looked around the forums for the answer to my question but I couldnt find it. Sorry if you’ve already answered this.

Around a month ago I was in the process of bringing my skills bot to regional competitions to qualify through skills. Since these were tournaments, I had to participate in the whole qualification matches thing. In one of these tournaments I employed a mobile goal hoarding strategy. I pushed the mobile goals into the corner of the field. I plowed it through the cones and then proceeded get another one and jam it in the corner aswell. It wasn’t until the semi finals that I got called out for it. The opposing team convinced the ref that I was hoarding cones because I was making it impossible for other teams to get cones behind the mobile goal. This ruling did not make sense to me. However, if the referee had said I was using the mobile goal as a “glove” to possess multiple cones I would have understood. I found a video of a team doing the same kind of thing.
Look at the first 9 seconds.

Is any of that illigal? If so, which parts of it? What if a team was to not push the mobile goal into the cones?

On a differentish note, if a team was to legally put a mobile goal or two in the corner could they “park” infront of the corner and deny the opposing alliance access to this part of the field?

Thanks for helping out!

  • Saahil Parikh

As explained in the Q&A Summary document and the relevant Referee Training video, there are two major criteria that referees will watch for when considering hoarding:

  1. If the robot is pushing multiple Cones at once.
  2. If the Cones are being actively kept away from the opposing alliance, such as by crowding them into a corner and then protecting that corner.

It is always difficult to rule absolutely on hypothetical scenarios. Using Mobile Goals to protect Cones would likely not be considered hoarding, presuming that the opposing robot could conceivably push the Mobile Goals aside to get the Cones. (that is, the Goals were not actively keeping the Cones away from the opposing alliance).

There are no rules preventing this, provided that no other rules are violated in the process, such as <SG6> or <SG7>.