Theme of the game
Every year, we get a new game that is released in early January and kicks off our 6 week build season. Below is a list of the past 5 FRC games and the current FRC game with their release videos and a short description.
2019 FIRST DEEP SPACE
This year's game is based on a space environment, where the weather may be rather windy and sandy. In the start a sandstorm will arrive onto the battlefield for 15 seconds, where the teams may either use their autonomous code or a vision system attached to their robot to navigate and place hatches and cargo into their cargo ship or rocket. After the sandstorm settles down the team's vision is restored as their blinds are rolled up and the continue their mission to load cargo before the next sandstorm arrives.
2018 FIRST POWER UP
2018's game was an 80s arcade theme. In the game robots must pick up power cubes and place them in different-height scales, gaining points when they have ownership. At the end of the game, robots climb a tower to "face the boss". Teams also funnel cubes into a vault where human players then activate power-ups: force (taking ownership for 10 seconds), boost (doubling ownership points for 10 seconds), and levitate (the equivalent value of a climb).
2017 FIRST STEAMWorks
Last year's game had a steampunk theme that revolved around air pressure, gears, and fuel. Robots had to collect gears from their human players and deliver them to their airship, where pilots (other human players) placed them in certain spots to turn rotors. Robots could also shoot balls into the boiler to gain pressure. Finally, robots "took flight" by climbing a rope connected the airship. This was the first year people were allowed to be on the field during the game.
2016 FIRST Stronghold
Stronghold was the first truly themed game that FIRST came out with, starting strong with a medieval design. Alliances stormed the castle, getting over various defenses in order to shoot balls at the castle. This was also one of the first games that introduced climbing - robots scaled the tower at the end of the game, ultimately capturing the castle. One of the most interesting parts of this game, though, was that each alliance chose the defenses for the other alliance.
2015 FIRST Recycle Rush
Recycle Rush is one of the most despised games in FRC. While it had good intentions to increase awareness of recycling, the game was incredibly boring. Robots just stacked totes as high as they could. The cool part was that human players got to throw pool noodles over the driver station wall and into the opponents' territory, acting as waste. One of the reasons this game was so bad is that there was no interaction between alliances, and little teamwork actually necessary.
2014 FIRST Aerial Assist
In Aerial Assist, alliances had to get a giant yoga-like ball across an open field and shoot it into a high or low goal. They could get more points by passing it between robots in certain zones and launching the ball over a truss. This was one of the most successful games in FIRST, largely because it encouraged so much teamwork and communication on every alliance. It was also incredibly exciting because there was lots of defense (aka robot parts everywhere!)