Thoughts on the new elimination rounds system?

I strongly dislike both of these changes. 2 team alliances at local tournaments may be a good idea, but at worlds, when most of the robots are strong, if a team has a tough schedule, they are sunk without the option of being a 3rd pick. I, as well as many other people, have had terrible issues with vex electronics. In fact, I am having issues with my cortex RIGHT NOW. I can’t inagjne a tournament that I spent thousands of dollars to attend coming to an abrupt 1 match end because a connector breaks and a subsystem stops working. The time to beta test this new set up is not worlds, especially not when everyone is running old electronics because people don’t want to buy new stuff right before the release of V5.

Well said.

I like these changes. It will put a much bigger emphasis on consistency and repeatability. Bring a lot more strategies into matches and I think this can prove to be a positive change.

We’ve had sudden death quarter finals at NZ scrimmages for years. It’s really not so bad but semi-final and final matches have always been best of 3. I guess we’ll see how it pans out at worlds this year.
From a worlds scheduling perspective it’s much better because there’s no need to allow additional time between elimination matches and you’ve always got 1 match only vs 2 or possibly 3 (tied matches excluded).

The most consistent robot is a 12 motor defense bot.

Better get started now.

Rip when VexNet disconnects.

Do you approve of the new Vex Worlds elimination format?

I am interested to see how this change will influence qualification play and tournament selection.

gdc def watched this too many times

April fools was 4 days ago gdc plz

They didn’t get the memo apparently

We got the memo.

I like the new update only because of the tournament structure for next year. I don’t, however, like the single elimination concept. I get that VEX is trying to nail in this idea of consistency and repeatability (@185A), but making Worlds more luck-based doesn’t solve that problem. It makes teams conform even harder to the “meta design” in fear that anything else will lead to them losing the tournament. It makes the occurrence of a field control glitch or a static reset of encoders spell doom for a team. It leads to upsets that would under normal circumstances never happen, but happen because of 1 minor technical problem. Imagine someone getting rank 1 then having their robot’s IME’s reset in the middle of auton, tipping the robot out of the field, leading the team to lose the competition. That’s one way to waste 12 months of of your life. Now imagine that happening in Grand Finals. It makes the competition less about consistency and more about “who’s Vexnet keys are more lucky this match?”. I don’t really like the change and, judging by the amount of posts here I don’t think the community does either. The GDC should really have consulted the community before making a change this big. I’m curious as to the reasoning behind these changes @DRow @VEX GDC . I’ve said my part. I encourage others to keep being vocal about their views (Although, in a more serious manner).


I see this as a shame. I think that this is much too late for many teams who may have built a strategy around anything other than “be the best stacker” because with only 2 team alliances, to have any hope youve got to be 2 amazing stackers. There is no room in elims to pick defensive bots now.

Im interested to see what happens but I think this is a move that should have been made to kick off a new season, not right before teams spend tons of money sending students across the country with a defense bot theyve pefected all season, to get their butts kicked :frowning:

These are some really interesting changes. Although I’m no longer part of the Game Design Committee, I can assure you that these changes have been discussed in varying forms for years. In my past life I was one of the strongest advocates of changing the alliance format away from three team alliances. I always felt that the three team alliance with the normal draft format ended up over rewarding the 17-24th best team at the event. So much so, it created incentives for teams to throw matches and take part in other unscrupulous behaviours. I’m a firm believer that the best way to eliminate an undesired behaviour is to change the incentives rather than increase the punishments, as such I think the elimination of the three time alliance is smart decision that firmly changes the incentives.

Of course by eliminating the three team alliance, something had to be done to ensure that at least the same amount of teams made the elimination rounds; many teams would not be comfortable with only 16 teams making elims. So going to a 16 alliance bracket was an easy way to fix that. Of course 16 alliance bracket in a best 2 of 3 format would lead to anywhere from 30-45 matches, which is infeasible for most events. So I can see where the decision to go to a single elimination format arose from.

Do I know that the new single elimination format will be a success? Nope, I’m definitely not certain of that.
Do I know that the new single elimination format will be a disaster? Nope, not certain of that either.

There are plenty of sporting events that are successfully based on a single elimination format (NFL playoffs, World Cup playoffs, NCAA Basketball Tournaments, etc.). So there’s plenty of precedent of this format working successfully and producing worthy champions. Of course there are also many sports that have longer elimination formats. (NBA, NHL, MLB, etc.) I honestly have no idea which is better for VRC, but I’m more than willing to try something new and see how it works out. Change can be scary, but it’s often for the best, even if it doesn’t feel like it right away.

I’m excited to see how this all plays out at Worlds, and am sure we’ll have a great discussion about it here in May.

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With all due respect, I think there are some other ‘memos’ that the @VEX GDC may want to reconsider:

  1. This new single elimination format really doesn’t promote consistency as much as it’s being preached. This is because luck and consistency go hand in hand; they are inversely proportional to each other as a more consistent robot means it is less reliant on luck, and vice versa. The basic principle of consistency in statistics tell us that the more samples one gathers, the better-represented the overall product will be, as outlier samples are progressively more and more neutralized as more samples are taken. Now, apply this to competition: instead of robots showcasing their consistency in 2 to 3 matches where one outlier match (in which anything could’ve gone wrong, from static reset of IMEs to game elements being misplaced to VEXnet keys being unreliable) could be overturned by two strong matches where a robot’s true potential is shown, now they have to pray that nothing fails in their one single match. If a single thing goes wrong, everything falls apart, and frankly, this discourages innovation. A big part of innovation, especially in robotics, is taking a risk in trying something new. Previously, teams had a cushion in that if their new strategy didn’t work, they could always go with what worked. Now, robot design and strategies will exhibit even more convergence than they already do because teams will be afraid to try something new.

  2. Choosing to test out a completely new system at a World Championship could be considered extremely unfair to competing teams. If the GDC decided to unveil this for the new 2018-2019 season, this would be somewhat understandable, as a new season can start with a new set of rules. But using teams that have spent the last 12 months putting their blood, sweat, and tears into their robots as guinea pigs for the first test run of this system is unfair to the strategies they’ve come up with and tested (in an environment where it was encouraged to test such strategies), and downright disrespectful, especially within a few short weeks of the World Championship.

I just thought that these are some factors that the GDC may want to consider before finalizing these changes. It’s only been a few hours since they were announced, and already your own teams are up in arms about it. We’ve seen the outrage sparked by small-scale events such as the SoCal State Championship and team 62A, and we’re all very worried that something on a much larger scale such as this could be potentially disastrous for the entire VEX robotics scene. So please, with all due respect, listen to what your loyal competitors have to say about the system they will have to follow for the coming years, and if they have any concerns and/or compromises (as I suspect they will), please consider them with as much weight as you would members of your own cabinet, as these compromises will come from the people that they will be affecting most.

Excited to see you are here. I agree with you mostly. I understand now why the 2 team alliances are a good idea and I agree with it. I can see how single eliminations make sense for a bracket with so many alliances, however, I still cant see why Finals of each Division and Worlds Finals cant be done in the double elimination format.

NFL: 60 minutes and timeouts to allow adaptation
World Cup playoffs: 90 minutes and substitutions
NCAA Basketball Tournaments: 40 minutes are upsets are arguably too common.
VRC: A minute and 45 seconds, with some scouting to prepare a strategy.
This point isn’t that big in my mind, because VRC matches are radically different.