Quanity or Quality

Which is more effective, scoring more points in the closer zone or less points in the far zone?

Personally I feel that the best approach to qualify early is to focus on quantity. Until December comes around, most teams have not done much competing officially yet. Without this practice, they are unsure how to counter offensive strikes. Along with this, it seems smarter to horde all the stars until the last couple seconds and then send a mass amount of stars over. This might not provide an optimal amount of SPs but it would generate more wins.

I would love to get some other opinions however, perhaps there is something I am missing.

Right now, the best option is quantity, as you said. Think of it in the game’s sense. The more stars you consistently get over the fence, regardless of whether it is in the far zone or the neat zone, the longer it is going to take your opponent to get those stars back over. That’s why you see a lot of the StarStruck matches being a sweep, for lack of a better term. If you can get the same amount of stars that you’re opponent can over the fence at a faster rate, then you win the match.

Why not both? It looks like regular dumper will be able to reach the far zone fairly consistently. 3-4 stars at a time is really good. However, you are right. 2 stars in the near zone is better than 1 in the far, even though the point value is the same because it is harder to return the 2 stars than the 1. As Karthik said in the game reveal, this game is all about how well you can overrun your opponent. This will require shear amounts of stars.

This game rewards 2x the points for the far zone, lots of experience has told me that the largest time lost is acquiring the game objects.

As such, if it takes x amount of time to acquire an object, and y amount of time to score said object in the near zone and z amount of additional time to score in the far zone, the math can be done…

We observe that x [time to acquire] is usually larger than y [time to score in the near zone] or y + z [time to score in the far zone]. And since 2(x + y) [IE scoring 2x objects in near zone for 2 pts] would have to be less than (x + z) [IE scoring 1x object in the far zone for 2 pts] to justify the quantity approach. I think I can safely say…

It’s way better to score in the far zone, IE quality.

Um, @Cody, that’s assuming you are scoring one object at a time. I think this thread was talking more about say, a 2 star near zone dumper vs. a 1 star far zone catapult. In that case the time it takes to pick up and score in the near zone is more like 2x + y not 2(x + y) a.k.a. 2x + 2y. In fact, it might not even be 2x + y because stars are often clumped next to each other and it takes the same amount of time to grab 2 stars as 1 when this happens.
I.E., cycle time often equals x + y, even if you grab 2 stars.

EDIT: Sorry about the technicality. These past two posts must be hard to read.

I agree with the initial math proposed by @Cody , but I feel like it omits a number of additional factors:

  • The time it takes to get into a scoring position. This one might not be crucial for all robots, but if you have to be right against the fence to score, it makes more sense to spend 2 extra seconds picking up an extra star instead of completing two complete trips of 3-4 seconds each.
  • “Crowdedness”. From personal experience at a competition and analysis of a number of matches, it seems clear that the overall cycle time for a robot increases as the number of objects in its way increases.
  • The opponent’s ease of intaking. This is probably somewhat subjective, but I would say it is easier to intake from the far zone than it is from the near zone, where stars often get tangled in clumps under the fence.

A perfect bot would have the versatility to shoot quantity with quality (multiple stars to far zone at the same time), and a very good bot would at least have the versatility to shoot quantity OR quality in a single match. However, if I had to choose one, I would choose sheer quantity.

Good point. The math gets harder with multiple scoring but it provides a good base case. In general I’d argue that X, the amount of time spent collecting n objects will always be greater that the additional time needed to score in the far zone, the real challenge comes from the extra design overhead. But if we’re talking about winning the world championship you have to assume that the best teams will have the harder designs which score more.

Just for fun, here is a formula for calculating cycle time or points per second.

Let Z = which zone you score in. This would be 1 for the near zone, 2 for the far.
Let O = which objects you are scoring. This would be 1 for stars, 2 for cubes. (I know I just used O as a variable. Forgive me please.)
Let Q = quantity of objects scored.
Let G = seconds it takes you to grab each object.
Let L = seconds it takes for you to line up to score.
And finally, let S = time it takes to score.

This all means that (ZOQ)/(QG + L + S) will give us the points we can score per second. let’s try it out. Let’s see what happens if I score a cube in the far zone. If it takes me two seconds to grab the cube, two to line up, and 1 second to score, when we plug in the numbers:


(1)(2) + 2 +1

Doing the arithmetic:

So it takes us five second to score 4 points.

I know this isn’t perfect, but hopefully somebody somewhere will find it helpful.

early season, there will be more push bots so scoring in the far zone will be better but late season I am not sure… my gut is telling me quantity… also SPs are not nearly as important as how many autonomouses you have won in breaking ties…

We recently had our first competition, and from what we saw quantity will win a lot of the time. This is because if you have a lot of stars in the near zone, that space is going to get crowded real fast and is going to be really dense with stars and possibly cubes. These can really get in the way if your drive isn’t powerful enough, or if they are so dense that you can’t move them much at all

I think quantity in the low zone is the dump bot killer. We competed yesterday (design award and finalist)
and it screws you up when you have a dump bot with tons of stars in the close zone… I think this game will come down to “who can stall the opponent longer” wins… For example, yesterday we just put over 1 or 2 stars than we went back the the far zone to get more and both robots from the other side filled up the fence where we were going to put over the stars, we had to drop the stars we were holding and clear the fence but the other team already overwhelmed our alliance by the time we started to clear thing out… and this doesn’t answer your question really but i think if you are going quantity you have to be FAST and if you want to do quality you will need a partner that can to quantity…

There is no point putting in the extra effort to score the objects into the far zone because when they land their, it is not permanent, meaning that the opponent will probably score the objects back or move them into the near zone. It is better to overwhelm the opponent by keeping the majority of the objects on their side.

Totally agree. When we were trying to win (not the matches we threw) if the other team started to clog the field with stars or cubes in the beginning it is difficult for a dumper bot to come back. This emphasizes getting the cubes over early and also the auton period.

What happened with you guys not hanging in finals match 3. you guys still would not have won the match but how come your robot stopped in the last 30 seconds? We finished with Excellence and tournament champions.

Quantity for sure. The math above being used to justify quality over quantity does not take into consideration a couple of things.

  1. if you score 1 star in the far zone rather than 2 stars in the near zone you are netting fewer points because you are leaving a star on your side of the fence.

  2. more stars on their side of the fence will usually mean more time for the opposition to gather stars to return them.

Think about this math. If you dump 3 stars in the near field, that is equal to at least a 6 point swing and possibly 9 point swing. If you throw 2 stars in the far field, that is, at best, an 8 point swing, and possibly only a 6 point swing.

At a 3 NF vs 2 FF, the worst the NF strategy does is tie the FF strategy.

Looking at cubes lets compare 2 NF vs 1 FF. 2NF is a net of 8 to 12 points. 1 FF is a net of 6-8 points. With cubes, it is impossible for quality to do better than quantity.

We would have tied the match and probably won… in the first 10 seconds the driver stalled the chassis so we basically couldent play the whole match than our partners ran over our intake which stalled them so you guys basically won because we cant drive LOL XD… we were winning in the beginning until we were both stalled and you guys still barely won… so ya…

yeah didn’t 5588E throw a cube on your robot?

No the driver kept running into the fence than got the arm caught in the fence :expressionless:

That stinks… what are you guys doing moving forward?

Lets take this to the competition thread, i will answer it there