Apr 24, 2009

FTC World Championships #2 - How the Game Works

I'm waiting on some videos to post more about the FTC World Championships and our robot, but in the meantime you can see a video our team put together of our experience at the competition here.

I also thought I'd post a description of this year's game so that readers can understand what's going on in the videos. You can click here to see an animation from FIRST that explains how the game works.

At a tournament, teams first participate in several qualifying matches. During each qualifying match, two randomly selected teams ally with each other against two other randomly selected teams. The two winning teams gain 2 qualifying points, while the two losing teams don't gain any. After the qualifying rounds, the team with the most qualifying points is ranked #1, and so on. But what happens if multiple teams have the same number of qualifying points? In this case, a somewhat-confusing tiebreaker is used. After each qualifying match, the four participating teams recieve the score of the losing alliance as ranking points. So if one alliance scored 130 points in a match and the other scored 95 points, all four teams in the match would recieve 95 ranking points, the score of the losing alliance. Then, if two teams have the same number of qualifying points, the team with the most ranking points takes precedence. For example, in Atlanta, Power Surge won all six of our qualifying matches, thus gaining the maximum number of qualifying points. However, there were three other teams who also won all their qualifying matches. But since we had the most ranking points, we were still ranked #1.

After the qualifying matches are over, a certain number of the top teams advance to the elimination rounds, where the winners are determined. At the World Championships this year, the top four teams in each division advanced. Each of these teams (called the alliance captains) pick two alliance partners to form a permanent alliance in the elimination rounds. The #1-ranked team picks an alliance partner first, then the #2-ranked team, and so on. Then they start over, with the #1-ranked team picking their second alliance partner and so on until there are four alliances composed of three teams each: the alliance captain and two teams they selected.

These alliances then compete with each other in a series of semifinals and finals. In each elimination match, alliances send two of their three teams to compete. In the semifinals, the #1-ranked team's alliance goes up against the #4-ranked team's alliance, and the #2-ranked team's alliance goes against the #3-ranked team's alliance. The two alliances which win at least 2/3 matches against their opponents advance to the finals, where they compete against each other. The alliance which wins 2/3 matches in the finals is the winner. At the World Championships, there were two divisions this year, each of which had their own elimination matches. So after the elimination rounds were completed in each division, the two winners of the divisions went up against each other for the overall finals.

Wow, long post... it's pretty simple, isn't it? :-)

-Jonathan

1 comment:

Sidneys1 said...

Sweet. I saw that animation at my FLL team's Champions' Tournament. I wish my team had enough recources to 'upgrade'!

Have a nice day,
~Sidneys1

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