This is our programs seconds year and this season will be the first time we have qualified for worlds. I have read several “What to Expect” kind of articles but is there anything that I should be prepared for that first time teams might not know?
The venue is very large. Be prepared to walk a lot. Practice fields will have lines. Skills fields may also, so work to get your runs in as early as you can.
Learn where pit admin is, and be prepared to go there for help if you need it. There is an onsite vex store that sells parts, including batteries. Also safety glasses. Bring your own if you can, but this provides a way to get parts if you really must have them.
You should bother to make the walk to Freedom Hall every time they have a meeting or announcement there. Lasers and sound are cool.
You may have already come across this document but if not, this should give you somewhere to start! https://www.roboticseducation.org/documents/2015/06/things-i-wish-i-knew-before-attending-vex-worlds.pdf
Bring a cart of some sort. You will walk A LOT, and carry your robot A LOT. Pits are organized by team number, not by proximity to your division’s playing fields, so you will be really thankful if you bring a hand-cart. We wished we had brought one.
Be ready to walk…and be ready to have a ton of fun. That said, time management is key. As pointed out by @kypyro, get your skill runs in early. This will help you focus on your matches. I also recommend getting to Worlds when doors open on Wednesday, so you will have ample time to set up your pit. Plus, it keeps inspection times to a minimum.
Worlds is an awesome experience. Have a ton of fun!
Don’t expect your field to be close to your pit. Matches are spread out quite a bit. Be ready for your matches and take breaks between them.
I did read this. I just wanted to know if there may be any tips experienced teams would know that first time teams wouldn’t read or think of. Thanks for the advice guys.
Definitely attend the after party at Kentucky Kingdom. It is a great opportunity to spend time with the many new friends you will make at Worlds. I suggest bringing plenty of spare parts. The onsite store frequently runs out of the parts that teams need the most. Don’t spend the entire tournament in your pits… Go out and make new friends.
Make lots of friends! Not only just to meet new people but make friends with a lot of teams in your division! This will get you recognition and if your not in a position to be picking it will definitely help you to get picked by the top seeded teams!
At worlds, will the top 3-5 alliances typically have very similar caliber robots where performance in the matches is what really determines the winner?
At worlds. the top 8 alliances will have high caliber robots and performance in the matches determines the winner. Scouting becomes of paramount importance to find robots that complement yours well, if you are an alliance captain or if you are trying to sell your robot to an alliance captain.
Is Worlds a family-friendly place? Say for children 2, 5, 9, and 12?
Yes. Absolutely. Though food and drinks are expensive.
Freedom Hall tease from the opening ceremony:
if you think the pit is near your division. You are sorely mistaken unless you are very very lucky
I will happily make a carrying cart before Worlds! But man I had to do a ton of walking/running at regionals without a cart so it shouldn’t be an issue.
Last year i was in the middle of the pit area, and I am taking a cart with me to wheel toolbox and robot to whatever field in whatever division i am in.
Freedom Hall, waiting for Round Robin:
Walk around, meet people, and get free stuff. Go around and talk your alliance partners since you have a lot of time.
Last year they had a lot of cool things like BattleBots and stuff.
If you have time around lunch and you drove, you could go eat somewhere (I think you have to pay for parking though). The food inside is stupidly expensive.
Get to the venue early every day so you get settled.
If you find someone you know with a field in their pit, that’s great. You don’t have a time limit if they’re nice, unlike practice fields, which are limited to 10 minutes.
Keep the drive team badges because you need them to get to the fields.
You’re technically not supposed to bring food in, but you know.
You usually get field elements after the competition is over, although they said not to take them home last year (getting cubes was hard last year).
Have fun because it’s fun.
See – things change. In the Olde Dayse we wanted participants to take game elements away so we didn’t have to pack them up again. It’s always good to ask.