This thread will be used to publish updates to the
VRC In the Zone Game Manual.
Please start a separate thread in this forum for discussion of any of these changes. For any official questions, please post in the official
VRC In the Zone Q&A.
On June 15th, 2017, the following updates were made to the
VRC In the Zone Game Manual.
<SG14> was edited to include the updated
36" expansion restrictions, to add the standard penalty text, and to fix a measurement error (from 45.72 mm to 457.2 mm).
An on-field measurement solution will be provided by VEX Robotics to all Event Partners (details forthcoming).
The text of <SG7> was updated to read as follows:
"Two Robots on the same Alliance may
not work in tandem to block access to portions of the field. Examples include, but are not limited to, two Robots blocking access to:
· Scoring Zones
· Corners of the field (especially in an effort remove access to Cones or Mobile Goals)
· The Loader
Minor violations of this rule that do not affect the match will result in a warning. Match Affecting offenses will result in a Disqualification. Teams that receive multiple warnings may also receive a Disqualification at the Head Referee’s discretion.”
The following text was added to <SG9>:
“Robots that intentionally plow multiple Cones to a specific location of the field,
even with a flat/convex portion of their Robot, would be in violation of this rule. Robots are allowed to drive through Cones that are in their way. Teams are not allowed to use this to employ Cone hoarding strategies.”
In addition, the following Note was added to <SG9>:
The definition of
Stacked was updated with Note 3 as follows:
“Cones are not considered Stacked
unless the Goal upon which they are fully nested is upright. Stacked Cones on tilted Goals are fine (e.g. a Mobile Goal resting partially on top of a Zone pipe or Cone), however Cones that are fully nested upon a Goal that has been knocked over will not count as Stacked.”
On June 19th, 2017, the following addition to the June 15th update was included in
Appendix E (VEX U).
was added to modify the in-match sizing constraint established by <SG14>.
August 17, 2017, 11:40am
On August 17th, 2017, the following updates were made to the
VRC In the Zone Game Manual.
In the definition of “Stacked”, additional images were added to help clarify what should be considered an “upright” Mobile Goal.
SG3 was revised to state the following:
SG5 was appended to clarify that this rule applies to all Cones that are fully nested on an opponent’s upright Goal.
SG9 Note 1 was reworded to better explain “Cone hoarding”.
Note: The intent of this rule is not to punish Robots for pushing Cones that are in their way; that is, Robots are free to incidentally drive through Cones on the field while Possessing a Cone. However, Teams are not allowed to employ Cone hoarding strategies.
Cone “hoarding” refers to the act of intentionally plowing multiple Cones to a specific location of the field, even with a flat/convex portion of a Robot, such that they are kept away from the opposing Alliance.
SG9 Note 2 was reworded to account for the fact that when a Robot contacts a Cone that is fully nested above an upright Goal, it is no longer considered Stacked.
Note 2: Stacked Cones do not count towards the Possession limit. (i.e. A Robot is allowed to control the movement of a Mobile Goal with Stacked Cones).
Robots can interact with Cones that are fully nested on upright Goals without those Cones counting towards the possession limit, provided that those Cones would otherwise be considered Stacked if they were not being contacted by a Robot.
SG14 was changed from a vertical cylinder with a diameter of 36" (914.4mm) to a maximum horizontal dimension of 36" (914.4mm). This was done to help make inspection, enforcement, and robot design more straightforward.
<SG14> As per <G3>, at the beginning of a Match, each Robot must be smaller than a volume of 18” (457.2 mm) long by 18” (457.2 mm) wide by 18” (457.2 mm) tall. Once the Match begins, Robots may expand,
but no horizontal dimension can exceed 36” (914.4 mm) at any point during the Match.
SG15 was added:
The Tournament Section, under Event Modifications referring to an event with 17 or fewer teams that is using unbalanced alliances, was changed to state that the team remaining after Alliance Selection is added to the top ranked alliance, not the 8th alliance.
If a tournament is using this format, alliances should be selected as per usual until each alliance has two teams. The remaining team would then be added to the top ranked alliance. (i.e. Seeds 2-8 have 2 teams, while Seed 1 gets 3 teams)
Appendix B, under the Robot Skills Challenge Rankings, was reworded to better explain how tiebreakers are used in the event that multiple teams have the exact same scores for each Programming Skills Match and Driver Skills Match.
VUG7 was reworded to the following:
Once the Match begins, Robots may expand beyond the starting size defined in ,
but no horizontal dimension can exceed 48” (1219.2 mm). The Robot may not exceed this limit for
the duration of the Match.
a. There is no height limit on Robot expansion.
On-Field Robot Expansion Sizing Tool is now available. It will be provided to all Event Partners as part of their Event Partner Support Kit. Any EPs with questions about this process should contact their REC Foundation Regional Support Manager.
On April 5th, 2018, the following updates were made to the
VRC In the Zone Game Manual. We have also published a standalone VEX Worlds Update document to highlight these updates and provide some additional context/clarification.
<G12> was modified to include the following comment regarding solely defensive strategies.
A Robot that is legally encompassing or interacting with an opposing Alliance’s Mobile Goal(s) has chosen to undergo a solely defensive strategy, and has waived the protection offered by <G12>. These Robots should be prepared to withstand vigorous interaction from offensive Robots attempting to retrieve their Mobile Goals.
Certain interactions with opposing Mobile Goals are, and have always been, legal. However, robots which encompass or otherwise control an opponent’s Mobile Goal (i.e. a “cage-bot”) must acknowledge that they take on a significant amount of risk in doing so. There is no penalty for tipping, entangling, or otherwise destructively interacting with a “cage-bot”.
If an interaction with an offensive robot results in a situation which would be considered a violation for the defender, such as extending beyond 36” (<SG14>), contacting an opponent’s 10 Point Zone (<SG10>), or removing an opponent’s Stacked Cones (<SG5>), the defending robot will be considered “at fault”.
<T06> was added to clarify which rule violations could be grounds for an event-wide DQ at the VEX Robotics World Championship.
<T06> At the 2018 VEX Robotics World Championship, violation of the following rules may result in Disqualification from a current match, upcoming matches, or the entirety of the event.
a. <R1>, especially:
i. Using multiple robots for a single team.
ii. Using a single robot for multiple teams.
iii. Using a robot that has competed under a different team number during the season.
b. <R2>, especially:
i. Making a major modification without being re-inspected in the new configuration. A “major modification” could include (but is not limited to) adding or removing a robot mechanism, modifying robot functionality, or replacing electronic components.
c. <R15>, especially:
i. Any internal motor modification (other than those explicitly allowed by <R15>). This could include, but is not limited to, any modification to the internal PTC, adding thermal paste, etc.
ii. Any internal modification to the VEX ARM® Cortex®-based Microcontroller. This could include, but is not limited to, any modification to the internal PTC’s or other circuitry.
d. <G1>, especially:
i. Egregious disrespect or incivility towards event staff, volunteers, or fellow competitors, either from Students or from any adults associated with a Team.
e. <G4>, especially:
i. Students acting as Drive Team Members for multiple Teams at the same event.
The REC Foundation, the GDC, and VEX Robotics want to be perfectly clear regarding the potential penalties for these violations at the World Championship event. The goal is to ensure the most level playing field for the most teams possible.
These rules are not new to the VEX Robotics Competition. They should not come as a surprise to teams. These rules are being specifically highlighted as a reminder, in advance, to minimize penalties during the event for the few teams who would be tempted to violate them.
As in previous years, teams should expect manual verification by event staff, such as on-field PTC checks, to enforce these rules. Teams that respect the integrity of the rules, as written, should have no reason for concern.
A “VEX Worlds 2018” section was added to “Event Modifications”, in the Tournament section of the manual. This event modification outlines and explains the division elimination format that will be used at VEX Worlds 2018.
• Each division will use a 16-Alliance Elimination Match Ladder, as shown below.
• Each Alliance will have two Teams. In VEX U, Alliances will have one Team.
• Within each bracket of the Elimination Match Ladder, the first Alliance to win a single Match will advance to the next round.
o Any ties will be replayed until a winner is established.
• In the VRC High School divisions, the Division Champions will then play a 6-Alliance Round Robin tournament to determine the two Tournament Finalists. Details can be found in the Round Robin Criteria document.
o In the VRC Middle School and VEX U divisions, the two Division Champions will be considered the two Tournament Finalist Alliances.
• The two Tournament Finalist Alliances will then play a single Finals match to determine the World Champion Alliance.
o Any ties will be replayed until a Champion has been established
This change from the traditional 8-alliance bracket will enable additional teams to play in Elimination Matches, assist in managing event schedules, ensure a more seamless audience viewing experience, and help place greater emphasis on consistent robot performance.
We are excited to pilot this format at VEX Worlds 2018, with the intent of rolling it out to all standard tournaments in the 2018-2019 season. This format will give Event Partners the flexibility to provide more match play for all teams. With single elimination and 8 alliances, there is time for extra qualification matches. With single elimination and 16 alliances, more teams play in the elimination rounds.
<R1> was updated to include the following clarifications:
b. Teams may not switch back and forth between multiple robots during a competition. This includes using different robots for Skills Challenge and Qualification / Elimination Matches.
c. Multiple teams may not use the same robot during a competition.
d. If a robot has competed under multiple team numbers during the competition season, this robot is not eligible for use at the World Championship.
Like <T06>, the intent of these clarifications to <R1> is to ensure an unambiguous level playing field for all teams. Teams are welcome (and encouraged) to improve or modify their robots between events, or to collaborate with other teams to develop the best possible game solution.
However, a team who brings and/or competes with two separate robots at the same tournament has diminished the efforts of a team who spent extra design time making sure that their one robot can accomplish all of the game’s tasks. A multi-team organization that shares a single robot has diminished the efforts of a multi-team organization who puts in the time, effort, and resources to undergo separate individual design processes and develop their own robots.
If you are having trouble determining if a robot is a “separate robot” or not, use the Subsystem definitions found in <R1>. Above that, use common sense as referenced in <G2>. If you can place two robots on a table next to each other, and they look like two separate (legal/complete) robots, then they are two separate robots. Trying to decide if changing a screw, a wheel, or a microcontroller constitutes a separate robot is missing the intent and spirit of this rule.
On April 17th, 2018, the following unscheduled updates were made to the
VRC In the Zone Game Manual and the standalone VEX Worlds Update document.
The “VEX Worlds” Event Modification section was modified to reflect that the World Championship finals matches will be in the “best of 3” format.