A very basic guide for rookie teams looking to make a big splash

Winning a VEX Robotics Over Under match requires a well-thought-out strategy, an optimized robot design, and effective teamwork. While the following is a general guide, you’ll need to adapt your strategy to your specific robot’s capabilities and the dynamics of the competition. Here’s how to approach it:

Pre-Match Preparation:

  1. Robot Inspection: Ensure that your robot passes all inspection requirements for the competition.
  2. Team Meeting: Discuss roles, responsibilities, and strategy with your teammates.
  3. Field Analysis: Observe the field conditions, opponent robots, and game elements like obstacles and scoring zones.
  4. Practice Runs: Conduct several practice runs to iron out any kinks in your robot’s operation.

Robot Design Considerations:

  1. Mobility: Design your robot for high speed and agility, low speed and power, or a balance of both to move around the field effectively.
  2. Manipulators: Make sure your robot has effective mechanisms for collecting, carrying, and deploying game elements.
  3. Stability: Balance your robot so that it can navigate the field without tipping over.
  4. Autonomous Capabilities: Programming an effective autonomous sequence can give you a head start in points.

During the Match:

  1. Autonomous Phase: Execute the pre-programmed sequence to score points early in the match.
  2. Coordination: Communicate with your teammates constantly about what you’re doing and what you see on the field.
  3. Offense and Defense: Depending on the opponent, you may have to switch between offensive and defensive strategies; be ready to adapt.
  4. Scoring Prioritization: Focus on the game elements that give the most points but are also achievable for your robot.
  5. Time Management: Be aware of the match time and prioritize tasks accordingly, saving some maneuvers for the end-game, if needed.
  6. Avoid Penalties: Be sure to understand the rules to avoid penalties that could set back your scoring.


  1. Review: Discuss what went well and what could be improved for the next match.
  2. Data Collection: Note down the points scored, any technical issues, and any observations about opponent strategies.
  3. Repairs and Adjustments: Make any necessary repairs or adjustments to your robot.
  4. Celebrate: Acknowledge your successes, no matter how small, and boost team morale for the next match.

Important Tips:

  • Practice, Practice, Practice: The more you practice, the more scenarios you can prepare for.
  • Adaptability: Be ready to adjust your strategies on the fly, as the match situation evolves.
  • Know the Rules: Familiarity with the game rules is essential for maximizing points and avoiding penalties.

By planning and practicing in advance and maintaining good communication during the match, you’ll maximize your chances of winning a VEX Over Under match.