Rulings at Benton county fair

Sorry in advance for my tone, but I am at the tournament at the Benton county fair, and they got some rules wrong, but refuse to listen. The first is they said goals count on the platform in auton, so we showed 41091a’s QnA question, but they cited Tower Takeovers Manual saying that something there said at the end of the match and the confusion about goals being scored at the end of auto to justify ignoring the QnA. The second issue is they are saying only rings on the branch count towards the awp. I said that it says scored in the game manual which is defined as either branch or base, but they argue that the word on is what we should be looking at because that implies on the branch, and they made up a definition for on and in despite neither being defined.


They also gave an alliance DQ after a team touched the opponent’s platform in the last 30 seconds in a way that wasnt match effecting, when the correct ruling would be to give the opponents the equivalent of having another robot parked on platform in points (up to 2)


First, this forum is the wrong place to raise the issue. Talk to the refs, EP, and RSM.

Second, I find it best to assume people are generally operating in good faith.

Third, whether the interpretation is right or wrong, at this point all you can expect is for it to be consistent


You’re certainly correct, but I can hardly blame the event staff because of how confusing and unclear the rules around auton scoring are.

Sometimes reffing is just not done properly, and if you aren’t able to convince them of the proper rulings, there’s really not much you can do in the moment, especially here on the forum.

I will use this incident as a clear example of the gdc’s inaction regarding auton scoring rules causing real confusion and problems during real competitions. Please GDC, fixing this is an urgent matter. Don’t leave a major part of scoring matches up to how deep the referees and students and an event have travelled down this rabbit hole of “at the end of the match”.


I brought it up with the refs who spoke with the EP so I thought I would bring it up here.

They do keep saying “it should be more fun this way”

Yea it is too late now that things have started especially for the WP. Bringing it up here was kind of an impulse since I felt like I couldn’t do anything.


Early season events are problematic. For example, Game Manual is not yet finalized and Referee certification is not available.

I would take early season events with a grain of salt. Be kind to the volunteers who step up to create an environment in which the game can be played at all.

[edit post spam flag - clarifying statement:
I posted my perspective about why Early season events can be problematic for both teams and EP/volunteers, regardless of level of competition and ability to qualify to Regional/state/national championship or Worlds. The event staff is working with relatively new information and a lot of questions about rules in early season. Navigating these early season events will result in a regular season Game Manual release August 31, Version 2.0 and will be basis of a Referee Certification course for Tipping Point season. So it begs to why have Signature Events early season, in some cases it is because the Signature Event is aligned with a regional special event that offers a good context for the competition (think Night at the Museum, or special locations for SE) that will draw teams from outside the hosting region. Signature Events offer a pathway to Worlds, one of many for teams.

So, if early season events are problematic, why do them? Generally, it is a good way for teams, EP/volunteers to get to know the game really well and that will inform how future events are run and how teams will develop new season strategies.

Why participate in a Signature Event from a team’s perspective? Well one reason may be they want to make it to Worlds, and an early season qualification will allow them to focus on finely tuning their strategies and robot.

This topic appears to have a few concerns about how the event is going given confusion about interpreting the rules by officials. This happens throughout the season. I hope the rest of the event proceeds well for all.

I hope this clarifies my original post.


I don’t think that applies when the early season event in question is a world-qualifying Signature Event.


Except for the fact that it is a signature event with 4 worlds spot being given out.

I would highly recommend reaching out to Minnesota’s RSM.


this sig is a whole ■■■ joke
unbelievable that they are just making up rules and even more so that the gdc is putting them into the position to do so


this is a very poorly run event and everyone in charge should be ashamed


The whole RSM organization has changed as August 1st, you will want to contact the RECF Event Engagement Manager. in the future should you have issues with how EPs are running their event.

but back to my earlier statement - it is an early season event, go in eyes wide open and have fun.

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I’d assumed it was a small scale early season local event, not a worlds qualling sig.

In that case, it’s pretty important that rulings are made correctly, and I’m kind of surprised recf doesn’t properly brief sig event staff on the rules. Seems like something they would do to ensure rulings are done correct at such an important event.

I still think part of the blame has to fall to the incredibly confusing scoring rules when it comes to auton, but I would have hoped that sig event referees would have been informed of the correct way to interpret these fuzzy rules, as well as all the other things they seem to be getting wrong.

I don’t think it’s very productive to bash event staff, but instead take this as an example of why rules need to be clearer, more explicit, and better communicated to referees (who at the end of the day are almost certainly less than knowledgeable volunteers), especially at important events.

and please fix auton scoring rules gdc


I agree for most early season events, especially for scrimmages.

However, the issue is that this is a flagship signature event from the RECF that qualifies to the world championship. There is a higher standard that need to be met at these kinds of events, and from what I am seeing, that standard is not being met. As I was writing this another team has been DQed in direct contradiction to the updated wording of SG3. These are real teams that spent $200 on registration for this event potentially missing out on worlds spots because of poor reffing.


I’ve edited one post to remove direct contact information.


The Emcee has just mentioned that they have been told by the RECF to continue being consistent with rulings that have happened so far in the event, as well as that they are watching this forum thread. With that in mind, I think it is worth elaborating on some of the relevant rules in this scenario.

First, SG3. SG3 states:

Platforms are “safe” during the endgame. During the last thirty (30) seconds, Robots may not contact the opposing Alliance’s Platform.

a. For the purposes of this rule, contact is considered “transitive” through other Robots and Scoring
Objects. For example, contacting an opposing Robot who is contacting their own Platform would be
considered a violation of this rule.

b. For the purposes of this rule, supersedes rule . Any Robot which is contacting its
own Platform during the last thirty (30) seconds, provided that no other rules are being violated,
will automatically receive the “benefit of the doubt”. Therefore, any contact with this Robot will be
considered a violation, regardless of intent.

c. Per , using a Scoring Object to contact the opposing Alliance’s Platform during the last thirty
(30) seconds would be considered a violation of this rule.

Violations of this rule which do not interfere with gameplay, such as bumping into the Platform and then driving away, will result in the opposing Alliance receiving credit for one additional Elevated Robot at the end of the Match. (Alliances may still only receive points for a maximum of two Elevated Robots).
Violations of this rule which do interfere with gameplay, such as preventing a Platform from becoming Balanced, will result in a Disqualification, regardless of whether the interference was Match Affecting or not.

(I’ve bolded the relevant section)
In multiple matches there have been instances where a robot bumped (did not unbalance) their opponents’ platform within the last 30 seconds of the match. What should occur is that the opposing alliance receives credit for one additional elevated robot. Instead, in one instance the entire alliance was disqualified (there are no alliance DQs in the qualification rounds), and in another instance just that robot was disqualified. This is in direct contradiction to the rule because the platform was not prevented form being balanced. Given the very harsh penalty being applied, I think it is completely unacceptable to continue ruling this interaction this way for the remainder of the tournament just for the sake of consistency.

Second, is the ruling that points from balancing can be used to determine the autonomous bonus.
Q&A 809 states:

“Does this mean that there are NO elevation points awarded at the end of the 15 second Autonomous period?”

This is correct.

Link: Robot Events: Autonomous Scoring

The way this had been ruled at the event is not consistent with the above Q&A. It is disappointing that a worlds qualifying event is ruling this incorrectly, however, given the much less harsh effect that this has, it is much more acceptable that it continue to be ruled consistently, especially in consideration that the GDC has refused to clarify the nature of scoring in autonomous in the weeks leading up to this flagship event.


29 teams and 4 spots to WORLDS in August… Would be nice if they were streaming so we could see. I don’t think that’s too big of an ask.


I think they should move live streaming to the required section.

These are the requirements:


And they could just restart at this point to do it right. They are only 1.5 hours in for a two day event.


they are streaming actually:


Thank you. It’s just not on the RE page



Additionally they have been counting goals in alliance home zones towards auton. I can’t blame them at all for this though, because there isn’t even a q&a that addressing this. (well there are many, but gdc has failed to answer them thus far).

I’ll say it again, gdc needs to clarify these scoring rules in a manual update (just a q&a has proven to be not enough to erase all confusion) as soon as possible. The longer they neglect to do so, the more events will have these major issues with refereeing.


I’d also like to propose that perhaps there shouldn’t be signature events this early in the season. There are always discrepancies in the rules to work out, and I think it’s much better if these get worked out in small scale local events, not large and important signature events. Maybe there shouldn’t be any sigs in future seasons until after there are numerous local events where these sorts of issues can be resolved in a generally harmless and inconsequential matter.