This year, FIRST has challenged us with yet another fascinating game, called Recycle Rush.
Recycle Rush is played by two alliances of three teams on a standard 27′ x 54′ FRC field. As the game suggests, the theme for this years game is recycling. There are four game objects; yellow totes, grey totes, recycling bins, and litter(pool noodles). Yellow totes are scored in the middle “Auto Zone” or stacked for additional autonomous points during the 15 second autonomous period at the start of a match. The yellow totes are also placed and stacked in the “Step” across the middle of the field to award big points to both alliances. The grey totes are placed and stacked on scoring platforms for points. The Recycle Bin can be placed on top of the grey totes for additional points, increasing based on its height. Litter can be put into the recycle bin for points and thrown from behind the driver station for points before the last 20 seconds. Click here for the detailed game manual.
Each year, FIRST adds a new twist to their games that make them unique from any game before. It was said in the 2015 FRC game hint, “change is coming”. And indeed, change has come. This year, robot dimensions have increased, bumper requirements have been removed, and this year, robots are not allowed to cross over to the opposite half of their field. There are much more changes to be said, but the most intriguing change of all, is the idea that each individual game has no “winner”. As said, yellow totes scored at the end will give lots of points to both alliances, increasing the score of every team involved in the match. Therefore, rankings are determined purely by scored points, rather than by win points, like it has been in the past. The 2014 game, Aerial Assist encouraged cooperation among teams of an alliance. Now it seems like FIRST is encouraging cooperation of alliances within a match.