2016 Fall Off-Seasons Preview

Teams 5254 and 20 are attending two fall off-season events:

  • Rah Cha Cha Ruckus on 10/29 in Rochester, NY
  • Tech Valley Robot Rumble on 11/5 in Ballston Spa, NY

These events are going to be primarily about training new students to take on new roles on the team, but that doesn’t mean we don’t also want to win them. Let’s analyze these events.

Rah Cha Cha Ruckus

Rah Cha Cha Ruckus is always a fairly competitive event, with teams from Western NY, the NY Capital Region, and Ontario coming together.

This year’s heavy hitters include:

  • 4039 is coming down from Ontario as the best high goal scoring robot during the regular season that’s attending Ruckus. 4039’s remarkably consistent autonomous mode should give them a huge leg up on the competition, who otherwise generally has an autonomous deficit.
  • 5406 is also coming from Ontario as the best low goal scoring robot attending Ruckus. Their consistent climb and ability to put such a large volume of balls into a goal makes them a heavy favorite.
  • 3044 came into Finger Lakes with a fantastic vision tracking system and autonomous that made them one of the best high goal scoring robots at Finger Lakes and got them playing in eliminations at the championship.
  • 20 eventually won Finger Lakes with superb strategy and high goal scoring, and played in the Championship Eliminations, but will be running new drivers the whole event, and a large part of 20’s success was due to the driver’s uncanny ability to line up shots by eye.
  • 639 was 20’s first selection at Finger Lakes, and was an alliance captain at the championship with their consistent climb and low goal scoring.
  • 1405 was the third member of the 2016 Finger Lakes Championship Alliance, and ended up being the one with the most accolades at season’s end, being a championship finalist. 1405 is the biggest wildcard coming into the event, as they could make and break some alliances depending on where they fall.
  • 3015 also made the finals of the championship, and can score a number of high goals or low goals and autonomous when they’re playing well.
  • 1511 consistently seeded high during the season with low goal scoring and a consistent climb. They even made Einstein as a backup robot.
  • 1126 knows how to play the game with their low goal scoring machine. But lacking the additional features that other low goal scorers like 5406, 639, and 1511 have is bound to hurt them.
  • Lastly, 1559 won a regional as a third robot with 5406 and 1126. They took advantage of that opportunity to vastly improve their high goal scoring capabilities, scoring quite a few at the championship, despite not being selected in the end.

There are a number of other machines that could be contenders as well, like 1507, 1551, 2053, 578, 1360, 1334, 4930, and 222- in no particular order.

One of the biggest things about Ruckus this year is that they’re using a 10 ball capture threshold, like the championship did. There aren’t many combinations of two robots at Ruckus that can score 10 balls into the goal on average, much less high goals. Captures in qualifications are going to be scarce, and come alliance selections, much of alliance selection should be about how to get 10 balls into a goal consistently. That makes low goal scoring machines with high volumes more valuable than high goal scoring machines with low volumes. It also makes successful autonomous shots more valuable, even those from the Spy Box.

Tech Valley Robot Rumble

Robot Rumble isn’t always the most competitive event, but this year is an exception. Capital Region teams had a strong year, and visitors from New England. 5254 is bringing two robots to the event. One is our regular in-season robot, and another is a robot the students have been working on this fall. I’m pretty excited to see how the kids do with both robots.
Robot Rumble has a normal in-season capture threshold of 8 balls.

  • 195 is byfar the favorite. 195’s dominant four-banner season also led to them dominating off-season events and reaching IRI finals by putting up world high scores. 195 should be able to solo capture, so barring bad luck for them or very good luck for someone else, expect 195 to be able to select the first robot off the board during alliance selections.
  • 2791 won Battlecry with 195, and has a consistent autonomous and consistent high goal scoring that makes them 195’s most likely partner.
  • 3044 was mentioned above, and is the host team. They’re likely to face off with 195 in finals, and should be hoping they can outperform 2791 to be on the same side of the glass as 195 instead.
  • 20 will have a large contingent there, and also has a history with 195. 20’s the team most likely to scheme up something that could beat 195, if anyone is going to do that. Don’t count on it
  • 229 has been working in the off-season, and has a robot that could potentially be pretty good if things go right.
  • 1124 also has a decent upside, but should be overshadowed by their New England compatriots in 195.

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