There seems to be some inconsistencies and unaddressed edge cases with the TT rules regarding the autonomous period, autonomous bonus, and bonus match load cubes. Not that anyone here has an official answer, but until the official Q&A opens, I thought I’d throw this out here and see what people think.
There are a bunch of definitions and rules that deal with autonomous. Without quoting them all, these are things that seem to still be unclear to me:
Autonomous tie - rules state 3 points each and one match load each. Does that also count if there was no autonomous points scored? Since it doesn’t say different, I would assume it does. If so, what’s the point? I get splitting the cubes, but a gain of 3 points by both teams is a net gain of 0, so all it does is water down the Autonomous Points tiebreaker for rankings.
Autonomous Points in the Tournament Definitions is stated at 4 and no mention of ties. Is this an error, or does the 3 points in the case of ties not matter for rankings?
In the case of a team from both alliances committing a violation during autonomous, the rules say that no autonomous bonus is awarded. Is this truly no bonus, or is it 3 points each? What about the match loads?
The autonomous bonus in 6 points for the winning alliance. This only factors into match play. The winning alliance also gets two purple cubes. I assume that each alliance gets one cube and 3 points apiece in the case of a tie because the cubes have to be put into play, and a net gain of 0 does not give either alliance an advantage, but also accounts for SP.
On the other hand, AP (Autonomous Points) refer to the amount of times a given team has won autonomous mode throughout thier qualifying rounds for the purpose of accuarate rankings going into eliminations.
These are two completely seperate metrics, and it’s best to not get them confused.
The especially confusing thing is the where they diverge. The edge case of autonomous ties is like this. As far as I can tell, while the bonus and cubes are split in the case of a tie, teams should still get 0 AP.
The relevant definitions (notice the missing mention of a tie in Autonomous Points)
Autonomous Bonus - A bonus awarded to the Alliance that has earned the most points at the end of the Autonomous Period. The Autonomous Bonus consists of six (6) points added to the score at the end of the Match, and two Match Loads that may be entered any time during the Driver Controlled Period.
Note: If the Autonomous Period ends in a tie, each Alliance will receive an Autonomous Bonus of
three (3) points and one (1) Match Load.
Autonomous Points (AP) - The second basis of ranking Teams. An Alliance who wins the Autonomous Bonus during a Qualification Match earns four (4) Autonomous Points.
That is a possible explanation, and may end up being correct. There is no precedent to have the number of Autonomous Points awarded for ranking purposes differing from the number of points earned during a match from the Autonomous Bonus. The rules even use the terms interchangeably in the Tournament section.
NBN was the last competition that didn’t have 4 points awarded for an autonomous win (it was 10), and SS the following year is when the Autonomous Points for ranking were started.
I just looked back at the rules for TP, ITZ and SS. Each of them defines Autonomous Points as being in the amount of Autonomous Bonus points earned by an alliance in qualifying match. The TT rules specifically change the ruling to state 4 points. That leads me to believe it was an intentional change and not an unintentional carry-over.
It still doesn’t make any sense to me to award 3 points to each team in a tie, especially if there is no movement by any teams in autonomous. That means you could have a match where there are four robots on the field and none of them move the entire match and it ends in a 3-3 tie. I know that similar things could have happened with TP because of the scored state of objects at the beginning of a match, but it seems strange for it in TT when you need to move every object to score. I would much prefer to see the tie only awarded if there have been scoring actions performed in autonomous yet it still is a tie. Also, as far as scoring mechanics go, the scoring tablets and TM will somehow need to allow for no autonomous bonus (when both alliances commit a violation), tied autonomous, and winning autonomous.