Question about the non-protected zone

So I have seen a couple forums regarding the non-protected zone. Unfortunately for me, all of these refer to the case where a robot has stacked cubes, backed, away and then been hit by an opposing robot, causing the stack to fall. The consensus on this is that it is a DQ according to game design committee-

"Yes, one Robot pushing another into causing some action is considered “indirect contact” by the first Robot. Therefore, a Robot which pushes an opponent into the opponent’s own Protected Zone or Goal Zone would be subject to the full extent of SG3.

To answer your specific question, a Blue Robot pushing a Red Robot such that the push “knocks over their stack” and causes Cubes to become de-Scored would be considered a violation of SG3 part F on the Blue Robot, and should result in a Disqualification."

This deems it illegal according to SG3 case F, as shown above. This implies that is it only illegal in the protected zone. My question is what about SG3 case B in the non protected zone. So for example, I am a red robot in my protected zone, and I am trying to score. Naturally, I am contacting my goal zone/barrier while trying to score. If a blue robot is clearly playing defense on me, while not risking damage, entanglement, trapping, etc., he is still obviously playing defense, and it is clearly not accidental. I have been told this is legal, since the cubes have not been scored, and therefore does not violate SG3 case B. However, rule SG3 includes this-

Robots may not intentionally or accidentally, directly or indirectly, perform the following actions:…
Contact either of the opposing Alliance’s Goal Zones or

If I, the red robot, is touching my goal zone or barrier in the non protected zone, and the blue robot hits me intentionally, how is that not indirect contact of the goal zone/ barrier, which would violate rule SG3 case D? As the rule states, the opponent may not indirectly contact my goal zone or barrier. I understand that it is a warning if not match affecting, but if the action causes me stack to fall while I am attempting to score, and I lose because of it, that is match affecting and should result in a DQ. There is an official Q and A on this topic, but since they take a while to answer, I wanted to hear from the forums. Thanks guys

if this is deemed illegal defense will be much less powerful than it currently is. I have seen countless defensive maneuvers where a defensive robot has indirectly contacted the opponents goal zone by pushing the opponent while trying to stack. it seems to be the general consensus that this is perfectly legal, but if the q&a is answered as illegal then that will definitely change the game a bit.

Idk if it will be illegal though, because how far can you really take the “indirectly” thing? directly rule violations are a very clear line, but indirect ones leave a lot up to the refs, which I dislike.


Yes, I agree, the idea of it being up to the discretion of the refs is unfortunate due to the variation in judgement between refs at various competitions. I also agree that this kind of defense has been generally accepted, I was just curious because the rules do seem to point to it being illegal. If the q and a does deem it legal, do you think they would modify the wording of the rules, since the way they are currently written can be taken to mean that it is illegal?

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they wouldn’t have to modify the rules, if a ref tried to call you out on it, you’d just show them the q&a. the q&a is an extension of the game manual.

good point; thanks for input. I will post when the q and a is officially answered.

FYI, the QA related to this is QA 467 Example B

and possibly QA 468

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