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Robowars Nationals 2013 Review
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marto
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Robowars Nationals 2013 Review

So I would like to think the event on the weekend went fairly well but I think there is still some things we can tweak. And questions I would like to ask people about how I/we ran the comp.

Did people like the draw setup? I know it got a little messy as the attrition rate went up but I think the spread sheets Daniel did up were great and made my job so much easier.

Did people like having a fight time? This year I scheduled down to a fight by fight basis. I think we did a great job of running on time and thanks to all the builders for putting up with me shoving you in the arena when you were semi ready (Glen).

Was there enough rounds? I would like to have more ant rounds in the future on maybe a bit less fast paced schedule. Don't know how this is possible with the days are setup but what are your thoughts.

Probably more others can think of, please let me know.

Steve
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 2:15 pm 
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Philip
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You and you family did and excellent job. Daniel is also awesome.

Is there a reason we wait half an hour between opening the doors and the first fight? Could we shorten lunch to a half hour?

Just at the end things got a bit hectic. The robots were going straight from arena to charger and back to the arena, but I don't see any other way of having the finals and keeping people's attention.

It is good to be able to read when your next fight is due to start.
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 2:53 pm 
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Knightrous
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quote:
Originally posted by Philip:
Could we shorten lunch to a half hour?

I think we need 1 hour for lunch so people can actually live. I know some people still didn't eat during lunch due to working overtime to get robots back in the arena for the next round. If dropped to half an hour, I don't think anyone will eat.

The spreadsheets handled the event fairly well, but I think we have hit their limits since they cannot handle withdrawn robots or mid event redrawing without causing incorrect data generation. I'll look into this again...

I think we need to stop chopping and changing weight classes on days. I believe the swapping from an antweight to a featherweight put a further stress on some teams due to having extra amounts of work to maintain them all. I think Ants should have run from 10 - 2 (with their semis/finals completed in that time frame). After that the Feathers could have come back onto the scene and did their semi/finals.
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 3:15 pm 
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Jaemus
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IDK if you were opening the floor to NSW interlopers like myself but my $0.02

- Agree with Aaron 1 hour lunch is needed
- Scheduled times were good, this actually helped me as I was able to keep in mind how long I had for repairs etc, and when I asked Steve at one point how long I had, he was able to give me an exact time
- Draw setup was great. The finals format worked for me.
- I thought maybe we could have benefit from some more feather heats, as there were lots of robots I didnt fight (although this was, perhaps, to my advantage). Although I understand if this wasnt feasible

Ready for some blather from me?

I still think we could benefit from dressing up the arena a bit more. At least some yellow/black striped tape, maybe a big QRSC logo on the floor, definately need to spam the robowars website EVERYWHERE to make it dead simple for someone to go home and investigate further. It would even be in their cameraphone photos and videos etc. I'd slather it all over the floor and inside and outside walls, and consider spending some club funds to have horizontal banners made that can hang over the arena. I know large vinyl stickers for the website / logos can be expensive, but could get some large stencils made and paint it on. This makes for easy maintenance. The more it looks like we are a big, organised, professional club(s), the more appeal we may have to potential builders.

Would also like to consider background music during fights and if possible, videos being displayed on the screens between fights (like we had at Suncorp Plaza) and during the fights, a time countdown display and / or pictures of the combatant robots with names clearly shown (to help the crowd ID the robots in the arena).

Was there any reason we couldnt fire up the big projector behind the arena? Too much light?

All this stuff may require another person to operate the A/V systems full-time during the event, which I understand is another thing to organise and/or pay for, but I consider it worthwhile for the sake of production values.

The MC we had this time around was fantastic, and this should be the minimum standard for all public events. Well done on getting that one organised!

Also the arena lighting, while it was convenient that the overhead lights present were sufficient for combat and the crowd, it wasn't really there for photography and not optimum for video IMO. Could benefit from more light. Maybe some funky coloured lights or even a bit of a small light show (to go along with the sound and video show I mentioned above, this can all be controlled by the A/V guy). I wonder what the cost would be to hire the small amount of A/V and lighting / staging gear that would be required and a drone to operate it for us?
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 3:47 pm 
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Jaemus
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Just to be clear, none of the above should be considered criticism and the event was AMAZING, the best one yet, and Steve and all involved should be god damn proud of themselves for pulling it off Smile
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 3:53 pm 
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Knightrous
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I was actually surprised that video quality was worse this year despite the better lighting via the clear roof Sad
My go pro video isn't worth turning into DVD material.
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 3:58 pm 
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marto
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Logos will be a no from gallery. Same with background music.

Lights I am not sure about we could have put up the halogens but if you remember from last year we are limited by the power availability in the gallery to about 2 pairs. Last year it was patchy and made it look worse which is why I chose not to put them up.

As for AV stuff possible but given how much of a pain it was to get the info of bots 1 day before the comp I wish you luck with that.

Steve
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 4:18 pm 
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seanet1310



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Even free to use music?

A few quick thoughts.

You can not cut down on lunch, As Aaron said some missed it as it stands.
I agree with Phil, Gallery opens early typically for us. Why not start fights that little bit earlier? Guess some did have quite a distance to travel.

A few things.
While the draw was good we do need a way to modify for pull outs. We also need to record results right then and there. Twice at least this weekend there were issues with who won. Last year and this year at NSW we had a laptop next to the arena and recorded on the go (using a dedicated judge if we have one). For the ant's Sarah's tablet could have worked well.

For a draw, could it be done more open? Even as a sceptical at the start? I know of two people who questioned how the initial draw was conducted.

If we can not have markings and posters (yet the poster the gallary was handing out had QRSC logo), could we get some business cards with website on it. I saw plenty of builders give out our forum url.

Could we run videos on the TV screens during breaks to entertain the crowd. We have plenty of fight footage and surely the gallery would not mind us showing their own event from previous years.

I can not see how we could fit in more fights, day two with the ants was nuts and a round was starting 5 minutes after one finished. We do still have large breaks between feather rounds but it seamed to be needed for a few bots.
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Post Thu Oct 10, 2013 7:39 pm 
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Philip
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quote:
Originally posted by Knightrous:
I think Ants should have run from 10 - 2 (with their semis/finals completed in that time frame). After that the Feathers could have come back onto the scene and did their semi/finals.
What would that leave the ants? Two rounds and then the finals?
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Post Fri Oct 11, 2013 2:43 am 
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dyrodium
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quote:
For a draw, could it be done more open? Even as a sceptical at the start? I know of two people who questioned how the initial draw was conducted.

I did the feather draw at Stevo's, initially we did it by entry date, but that ended up with lots of qld vs qld and nsw vs nsw fights, so I split up the states on bits of paper and seeded it that way, it was still random. Although we didn't fit quite enough fights in to do a full round robin, the idea is you will have the potential to fight everyone, we just wanted to make the first round a bit more 'interesting' for the competitors.

Music is a nice idea, but interferes with the video footage unfortunately.

1hr lunch 100% needed.

There was some fights where the MC just assumed I was judging, and had to rush to the arena to watch the fight (or the view was obscured as in the case of ant fights) so that was a little rubbish... luckily none of those fights were close. We really needed dedicated judges, Seano did a good job of that for Ants.

OT, but putting that carpet and antkit 'box' away was a total joke and wasted like 1hr plus of our teardown time. It was really their responsibility IMHO and after ripping the arena down it's a big ask.
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Post Fri Oct 11, 2013 7:23 am 
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Jaemus
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We can't use our own logos? In an Art Gallery?

Can't we claim it's art? hah!

What about the website? That's arguably more important
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Post Fri Oct 11, 2013 8:47 am 
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marto
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Its not that we can't put the logos on there its more about how its done. It would have to fit in with the event and with the guidelines the gallery gives you for the look of the event. If you were to get designs/sketches done up months in advance and get them approved then I am sure that it would not be a problem. I am more saying plastering logos over everything is just going to be a straight up no or "can we cover that up".

As for the draw it was seeded state and done randomly with drawn out of two buckets I watched him. For ants it was just done in order they were registered, but we then swapped Fire Ant/Cat as they were same drivers fighting each other early on.

The box and carpet is just a courtesy I could have said no and left. But you guys didn't exactly look like you were busy (smartphones) and we were waiting for trailer. Yeh I could have said no but its more about whether or not you want to be invited back at that stage.

As for music... maybe some 3min mixes for the fights would be possible.
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Last edited by marto on Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:48 am; edited 1 time in total

Post Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:10 am 
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Glen
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No qualms here, Really struggling to think of a more smoothly run event.

If one had to nitpick then maybe as said, just do the ants in one go then the finals. The timing of the 2nd day was a little disconcerting, 3 hours free between one round then 30 the next etc Razz

Arms are well f-ked from moving that carpet haha but not like that fella could move it by himself. Stop being a bitch Angus Razz
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Post Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:11 am 
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marto
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@Glen there was 1.5hrs between each of the feather rounds. Did you stroke off for a bit there? Razz Pretty sure we ran almost exactly to this timetable.

Day 2 - Sunday 
10:30 Featherweight Playoffs (if required)
12:00 Featherweights: Quarter Finals
1:30 Featherweights: Loser Semi
3:00 Featherweights: Winner Semi
4:20 Featherweights: Grand Final
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Post Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:20 am 
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Glen
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Oh yeah i got a bye didn't i haha. <_> Guess i'll just shut my big mouth
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Post Fri Oct 11, 2013 11:21 am 
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