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Rocket Race: The Alien Escape

(Compliments of SA BEST) 1999 BEST game is one of strategy, speed, and agility. The objective is to design and build a remotely controlled robot to move game pieces to one of four scoring areas. The game pieces represent the escape pods of alien beings that must be attached to a rocket that is nearing blast-off.  Four teams will compete at a time, and the team with the most points wins.
The Playing Field: The area nearest the rocket is a blast zone that will contain the heat and debris generated at launch. Each team has a safe zone, away from the rocket blast, that houses a life-support area, power grid, and pod rack. Machines can drive anywhere on the field, including other teams' safe zones.

Scoring:  Of the four scoring zones, two are inside the teams' safe zone and two are on the rocket in the blast zone. Pods attached to the life-support receptacles on the ramp inside the safe area score a single point per receptacle. The other scoring option is in the two recharge areas (the small squares) contained in the power grid. Teams score one point for each recharge area containing one or more pods. Scoring within the safe zone can be accomplished using any color pods, with the points going to the team that started in that zone.

Pods placed on the rocket in the blast zone count two points for the lower region (below the band) and three points for the upper region (above the band). The pods on the rocket will be scored for the team of the corresponding color; red pods go to the red team, regardless of which team placed them on the rocket. In any of the scoring areas, pods must not be in contact with the machine to be counted at the end of a match.

The BEST pods (the cylindrical shaped ones) can be scored in any of the four scoring locations just like the regular pods. In addition, the two BEST pods give a team two chances to multiply the points scored in their life-support area. The multiplier is equal to the highest score of the two BEST pods (only one multiplier will be used). The spotter can handle and score the BEST pods, but only after they are delivered to the starting area.
The Rules: At the start of each match, the machines will be released to score game pieces. Matches will be three minutes long. The machines can remove any pods from the rocket or any other scoring area, and teams can defend their pods from opponents. Pods are out of play if they contact the floor outside the field.