VEX College 09-10 Rules Released

The VEX College rules have just been released.

Big changes I see so far,

*]4 Large Balls (start the match)
*]18" x 18" x 24" dimension constraint
*]Only one of each custom materials (6"x6"x1" plastic block (ABS, Derlin…etc), 12"x24"x1/16" polycarbonate, aluminum sheet 12"x12"x1/16")
*]60 second autonomous , 80 second tele-operation
*]15 point autonomous bonus
*]each team has 2 robots and competes against other universities (similar to last year’s college format)
*]College teams can use VEX V.5, CORTEX or ARM9 EDR packaged systems
Big Thanks to VEX for listening to the college teams’ survey and coming up with awesome rules !
Hopefully we won’t have any college teams copying high school designs this year with a change in dimension!

I don’t think last year’s college designs were copies. There seemed to be three main types of robots that worked best in the game, and all designs evolved into those eventually.

Now, on to my college thoughts:

With the extra 6’’ in one dimension and the fact that you make your own partner (and unlike last year you don’t have to worry about the other robots as much), it seems there are many viable strategies. I expect many teams composed of a wallbot and a scoring bot.

With this game, I am glad that the autonomous bonus is 15 points instead of the 5 points in the other version. 15 points is enough to make an impact in this game, whereas I do not think 5 points is.

Autonomous will be interesting in this mode. The main strategies will most likely be locking up small balls, going for the medium balls on the wall, or just trying to pick up stuff. However, since balls seem to pile on the center wall, it will be interesting to see how teams deal with the balls in the way during autonomous. With 20 seconds this would not be a problem, but a bunch of balls blocking the path could be trouble.

But perhaps the most interesting point is this rule right here:

Since we do not have to worry about Ranking Points (or whatever they’re being called this year), perhaps a prominent strategy this year is to just try to get rid of all the balls on your side?

End transmission

Does the manual say that Strength of Schedule Points (Ranking Points) will not be used?

It is not clear, but when I made that post I assumed that we were not, as they were previously used for alliance picks (which don’t happen in the college challenge).

However, upon rereading the rules it seems more likely that the top 8 teams after qualifications will advance to the elimination. So RP probably do come into play. However, I expect the dumping strategy will be seen in the elimination (and perhaps in the qualifications too).

See this Q&A:

Strength of Schedule Points are still used.

College folks,

A local Community college is planning to spin up a team - Are there any other teams close enough to Northern VA to want to meet somewhere for a scrimmage or two?


We will be mentoring a team in the Houston area. I like the new rules for this year’s college challenge. It takes the competiton to a higher level.

Hey College Teams,

Please post a one-liner identifying yourselves here (or maybe some clever person can create a home in the Wiki for college-team material).

I’m curious who you all are.



Wiki “Main Page” updated to Link to "College Team List" page.

I made an entry for the Rice University Team. I have a feeling that very few colleges are watching the forums.

We should probably setup a mailing list of all the college teams last year. Or at least the teams registered this year. Does anyone have access to see which college teams are registered so far ?

I vote for the team list / contact be made public. I’m sure there are a few mentors around that would be interested in seeing what the college students are doing.

I’d also be willing to have local colleges come participate in our “throw-down” scrimmages. It would give you good practices before the main event and give my middleschoolers a chance to see what is possible.

Here’s a public mailing list for College VEX teams to ask questions and discuss

San Jacinto College is now registered. Team Anarchy will be ready for competition!