Virginia states problem

Exactly the same situation with Skyrise at Worlds when the decision was to allow matches to continue with exactly the same setup once it was discovered the field set up was not correct.

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Are the fields at this event raised? If so, the easy solution is to lower them.


They are raised and i completely agree. It’s ridiculous that we can easily put up 3 11 stacks on a practice field and then on a real field where it matters we can’t even put up stacks of 7 without them falling…

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But a slanted field in Skyrise wouldn’t have made it impossible to score. I didn’t compete in skyrise, but based off watching games, the scoring methods wouldn’t have been affected that much , as skyrise sections could sort of hook on to each other like ITZ cones, and the cubes were placed either on the floor (but not stacked) or on fixed poles, where the poles would prevent the cubes from falling off. Tower Takeover has nothing supporting the cubes, they are resting on top of one another, and as such a slanted field would significantly affect scoring methods.


I disagree this problem needs to be fixed or else the teams that win our states will not be the robots that “deserve to win”, and I believe this problem has hopefully been solved already. I believe a better solution would’ve been to have matches play on non-raised fields with no issues once the problem was realized though, as it effected the outcome of tons of qualification matches.
I am a firm believer that we should be able to adapt to different conditions and overcome problems, as this is what engineering is about. However, there is no solution to stacks that are high falling besides an anti gravity machine, as physics simply disallows such high stacks that are at a slant to stay upright.


Here is the most important point now - once matches have started with a particular field setup that you think it is wrong, all other QM MUST be played with the same conditions. I know it sounds like it is not right - but unfortunately, that is your playing conditions for ALL teams. Changing it now will cause those teams who adapted to the environment to be penalized for their hard work. VRC is all about adapting and learning. Trust me, if you succeed because you adapted to adverse conditions, you are exactly the type of engineer or project leader any company would want… Many NASA projects went well beyond their project specifications because of the project team’s ability to adapt to the unknown. Specifications of “five year mission” have routinely turned into decades long project. Please inspire us with your ability to adapt… we need more than ever those who can adapt.

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I did some calculations, @lacsap, and it would appear that per game manual rules, the fields are out-of-spec.

Virgina States Fields


Thanks for your interpretation and analysis - however, there is no mention of “normal field configuration”, such as concrete floor that might not be level to what you consider “normal”

So, let’s consider a non-zero hypothetical - an event on a cruise ship (actually a real suggestion for a particular EP), should the event be canceled if ship lists?

Also, in the diagram you provided was less of a change than in Skyrise faced by QCC2…

Back to my point - why change field if it was equally disadvantageous to all teams? (logic presented to the winners of Worlds during Skyrise - they had to adapt)… So are team no longer able to adapt?

So this issue did come back to haunt us…


Rule G3, common sense, would state that the field should be level with the ground. A field at a 45 degree incline is obviously nonsensical. Why should a 2 degree incline be any different?


Action should be taken because a physical inability to play the game will result in the non-best teams winning a worlds-qualifying event.


It isn’t fair at all actually, as some sides of the field were level and some sides weren’t, which made it even worse. Additionally, teams with low stack capacities were given much more of an advantage than teams with high scoring capabilities as they are used to scoring lower stacks. Nonetheless, the point of this post was to make a difference in the future not this current event, so I hope this failure is taken into account at worlds and in future competitions.


I can say, if I was a team at this event who regularly scored 10+ stacks, I for one would be fairly tilted


Taran you were doing so well…


The whole concept of this game is based on the assumption that the ground is level. Having a tilted surface is not covered in the rules because it essentially breaks the game completely. The game manual can’t cover every rule ever (ie don’t hold the competition outside on a windy day, underwater, or in the middle of a fire), so some things can be assumed to be necessary.

In a stacking game, I would say, and this is just my opinion, that a flat field is a necessary and crucial assumption the GDC intended for EP’s to make. Otherwise they would break the game’s basic premise completely.


The ep job is to ensure a fair playing field with many of the fields having either blue or red having much flatter goals gives one alliance an advantage. This isn’t fair play when one alliance can stack without worrying about stacks falling.

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where does that say that in the game manual…

Look, soccer players have to deal with fields with far more “unleveled” playing field… IFAB for soccer describe the field similarly to GDC - no mention of “level ground” or any mention of tolerance or measurement of such…

So, if you want a GDC ruling - post it on Q&A… but during Skyrise variance due to shifts in 3d was deemed fair at Worlds since all teams had to deal with it, and did not correct any of the fields… So my question, what has changed for this event and not any other events this season?

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I am torn on this one. On one hand I think @lacsap made a good point about adapting and accounting for unideal conditions, I believe that students should not have to worry about the condition of the field itself. I for one actually checked the raised fields today at states because I wanted to make sure they were level. However, unleveled fields reflect very poorly on the event organizer. This may have been a detail lost in the commotion of setting up a competition (which is no easy task) but, it takes roughly 5-10 minutes to level a raised field with cheap shins that can be bought at a hardware store and a level. We leveled our raised field which is comprised of 4 wooden sections in 5 minutes. Students should be aware that such anomalies can occur and prepare for them but something of this manner should have been caught long before the competition started. P.S. a cruise ship competition sounds kinda cool but also a really bad idea because of the unpredictable and varying environment.


thanks for considering that - the location does not allow for a good access to hotels/roads/etc… but location is so wicked cool that out of box thinking was “get a cruise ship”. and the venue was far more controllable than the destination - the location would have been really cool as team destination…

anyone willing to think outside the box, thee cruise ship event might be a good signature event :slight_smile:


There was a similar problem at the Speedway signature event, but less severe, as it really only affected my team since we were one of the only ones to place stacks in this one specific position. But i would pull away from a 9 stack that was almost perfectly straight, and the stack would lean for 5 or so seconds, then slowly fall over. I lost several matches because of this. as I tested after the tournament ended on day 1, there was a significant amount of wobble on the base cube in the goal zone, contrary to the same cube being placed regularly on the field. there must have been some flaw in the very corners of the fields that caused this to happen. this is not necessarily a complaint, but more to spread awareness that this could happen at worlds if careful attention is not paid.