2019 FRC Off Season Blog

Madtown Throwdown Offseason Tournament

A Brief Summary

This past weekend, we attended Madtown Throwdown, an annually hosted offseason tournament hosted by Team 1323 (Madtown Robotics), in Madera, CA. We had a great time jumping back into action with our robot, Backlash, before the start of the 2020 FRC Season. Shoutout to FRC Team 1323 MadTown Robotics, FRC Team 1678 Citrus Circuits, and FRC Team 971 Spartan Robotics, for winning the tournament!

Team 254’s Backlash and Swerve Bot in an alliance together before an upcoming match

Event Summary and Highlights

Robot Performance (Backlash)

Backlash approaching the HAB zone for a climb before the end of a match

Throughout our qualification matches, we sought to earn the maximum number of ranking points, which meant prioritizing scoring in the rocket in every match to get the rocket RP, as well as climbing and scoring enough points to win. We employed a new rocket RP scoring style that allowed us to utilize our partners well. Since the opposing defense was much better at Chezy Champs, we focused on the top two levels of the rocket and let our partners score on the first level. The HAB RP was a bit harder because of the increased point requirement. Thus, we made sure to always climb successfully and also get our partners to park on the platform. We consistently scored double climbs in our matches.

By the elimination period, we focused on simply winning our matches. We scored as many points as possible by scoring as many cargo balls as possible since they were worth more than hatches. We wanted to score enough hatches such that we had multiple points to score at any moment and avoid getting caught up by defense. We ran our cargo ship autonomous program to place hatch panels on the first two side slots of the cargo ship and then filled the rocket during most of our matches. Sometimes, we switched between the task of scoring hatches and cargo with our alliance partners to confuse defensive opponents.

Alliance Selection (Backlash)

Going into the elimination period, we formed an alliance with Team 1323 MadTown Robotics, Team 4698 Raider Robotics, and Team 6174 Kaprekar’s Constants.

Team 254 representative, Garrett Blosen, poses with our chosen alliance partners

Robot Performance (Swerve Bot)

Our swerve bot on the HAB zone before an upcoming match

With our swerve bot, we had no vision which made alignment quite difficult. Due to our alignment issues, hatch panel placement was harder to accomplish. Instead, we tried to focus more on scoring cargo, in all levels of the rocket and in the cargo ship. However, hatches on level one of the rocket and on the cargo ship were easier to score because we had our camera. We also placed hatches on level one of the rocket to open scoring locations. Then, we scored cargo in on level one of the rocket as well. Our swerve bot also was able to climb onto level three of the HAV with the suction cup climber, so we used that to get us the climb bonus during matches.

Alliance Selection (Swerve Bot)

Going into the elimination period, we formed an alliance with Team 1662 Raptor-Force Engineering, Team 5104 BreakerBots, and Team 2135 Presentation Invasion.

Team 254 representative, Emiliano Hansen, poses with our chosen alliance partners

A Special Thanks

At Madtown, we would not have been able to be so successful without the amazing teams that we were able to work with during our matches. Also a special shout out to our pit crew and drive team for properly maintaining our robot during the tournament. We would also like to highlight the efforts of our alliance readiness crew to keep our alliance partners ready throughout the tournament. Team 254 would also like to thank all the volunteers and judges that made this tournament an exciting experience, and all of our mentors, teachers, and parents who supported us and helped us succeed in this tournament. Special shoutout to Team 1323 MadTown Robotics for making this event possible.

The Team 254 pit crew in action

254 member, Safwaan Khan, in action as a pit crew member