March 30, 2024

From NHRL

March 30, 2024 will be our third qualifying event in the NHRL schedule.

This will be our first World Championship qualifier event that we will run outside of Norwalk, Connecticut! The event will take place at the RIT Gordon Field House in Rochester, NY.

Competitor registration has closed.

Here is the list of participating competitors.

We are working on approval for flamethrower bots, and we have not yet announced our broadcasting plans for this event. Stay tuned for more information on both fronts.

Registering for Rochester

NHRL has grown significantly in the past year alone, and we’ve had to modify registration to give more people a chance to compete. We’re thrilled that so many people are excited to fight at our events, but we had to figure out a way to make the process more fair.

We’ve solicited feedback from the builder community, and we’ve come up with the following plan. We’re very grateful and thankful for your feedback!

We are adopting a new ballot-style registration system, replacing the first-come-first-served system we’ve used in the past. We’re also setting up a way that people who need more certainty in their registration can have it.

We will be monitoring the process closely to see where we can make improvements either for the remainder of this year or for next year. We may make changes (hopefully small tweaks) to this process throughout the year to make sure it’s the fairest possible registration process for everyone.

We will open March registration up on Monday, January 8 at noon EST. It will be open for one week, and will close on Sunday, January 14 at 11:59 pm EST.

There will be two ways to register: open registration and event reservation.

Open Registration

Open registration will be the most common way to register for an event. It will not guarantee that you will fight at that event, though! When registration closes, we will select bots randomly, weighting for bots that have not had a chance to fight with us yet.

If you do not get selected for a spot, you will be placed on the waitlist in a random order.

This way, it no longer matters if you sign up immediately when registration opens, just before it closes, or any time in between. You will have the same chances to make it in any way.

We will announce the list of bots in the March tournament no later than Wednesday, January 17. This gives long-distance builders over six weeks to make travel arrangements.

There will still be a $25 deposit. This deposit will not be refunded immediately if you are not selected; instead, you will be put on the waitlist. Your deposit will be refunded if you withdraw up to 2 weeks before the event (like in previous events). If you never get selected from the waitlist, you will get your deposit refunded after the event.

The main reason for these changes is to keep the system fair for everyone. As a result, we will not allow a builder to compete whom we believe is acting in bad faith (for example, renaming a bot to go around the process).

Waitlisted bots

The waitlist is there to make sure that as many people get a chance to fight as possible, and to ensure that we can run a full field of bots fairly.

If you’re on the waitlist, we would like you to be ready when you are called. If you don’t think you will be ready, then we ask that you withdraw from the waitlist to make sure other people have a chance to fill slots.

If we call you from the waitlist within two weeks of the event and you are not able to fill the spot, you will not get your deposit back.

Spot allocation

When registration closes, bots in each weight class will be separated into the following groups:

  1. 2024 Debut - 50% of slots would be reserved for bots that have not fought at an NHRL event in 2024. (We would use the definition of “new bot” to ensure this, but applying it to bots that have not fought in 2024.)
  2. Missed Last Event - 20% of slots would be reserved for bots that did not fight at the most recent NHRL event, and have not already fought at 3 NHRL tournaments.
  3. Under 3 NHRL tournaments - 20% of slots would be reserved for bots that have not already fought at 3 NHRL tournaments in 2024.
  4. Open - The remaining 10% of slots would be for all remaining bots.

We may change this grouping for future road qualifying events.

We will evaluate and possibly tweak these percentages throughout the year.

You will find out if your bot has a slot at the event or is on the waitlist after registration has closed.

To assign bots to slots, we will start with the 2024 Debut group. All bots in this group will be drawn in a random order until either all bots are assigned a slot OR there are no more slots left.

If there are additional slots, these are added to the next group’s allocation. If there are additional bots, these are added to the next group’s list of bots.

We will repeat this process for all four groups in the order set out above.

Any unassigned bots will move to the waitlist in a random order. This order will be published. As bots drop out, bots of the appropriate weight class will replace them from the waitlist.

Each group will have a set number of slots allocated to it for the event. Starting with the first group, if there are fewer bots registered than slots available for that group, all bots will be added to the event and the remaining slots will be added to the allocation for the next group.

If there are more bots in the group than available slots allocated to that group, bots from that group will be drawn randomly until all slots are filled. The remaining bots will automatically be added to the next group. This process continues until the final group where all remaining slots are filled and then the waitlist is created by randomly drawing all remaining bots.

If a bot has participated in at least 3 tournaments during the season, it will only be selected if there are available slots after all registered bots have been selected.

We will use the January “new bots” rule to determine what is a new bot and what is a returning bot.

If we determine that a builder is trying to circumvent these rules by re-entering an already-entered bot under a different name, or some other means, that builder will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including event bans.