FIRST Robotics Competition Blog

2022 Season Teaser, Single-Day Events, Kit of Parts

Oct 06, 2021 Written by Frank Merrick, Director FIRST Robotics Competition & Kate Pilotte, Senior Kit of Parts Manager




2022 Season Teaser

In case you missed it, the first episode of the 2022 FIRST Robotics Competition season teaser has been released. Yep, I said the first episode! More episodes to follow, the next being released on October 27, 2021.

If you watch this first episode very carefully you might just see.... oh, I’m not going to even say it, it’s so obvious. We didn’t do a great job hiding that one.

Single-Day Events

Event preferencing opens October 14th (that’s next week!!) I hope everyone is getting ready for what we think – no, we know – will be a fun season. Check out the User Guide for steps on how to complete preferencing.

As we noted in a blog in August, we have been reviewing ways to make accommodations for season disruptions. One of those accommodations is shorter, smaller events.

You will shortly see that the Chesapeake District, the Ontario District, and the Festival de Robotique Regional event in Canada will be posted as single-day events. Local leadership has decided this is the best approach for their areas, and we all agree that while there is a limit, smaller official events are better than no events as long as they’re still considered safe for participants.

It’s important to note that while the areas above are the only ones currently planning single-day events, more may shift to them depending on local circumstances. If that happens, we will work with the teams to help them adjust their plans.

As currently conceived, single-day events will:

  • Accommodate 20 and fewer teams, down to a still to be determined minimum
  • Keep robot gameplay to a single day, with a winning and finalist alliance being determined each day, and approximately 8-10 qualification matches minimum depending on team counts
  • Have judging done fully remotely
  • Allow for the full set of standard FIRST Robotics Competition awards to be presented, with all teams competing the same weekend placed in a single group for award purposes (so, two sets of teams for Districts, three for Regionals, as District and Regional events are two and three days long respectively)

We still have many details to work out, but the information above constitutes the bones of these events as we are thinking of them right now.

Teams will be able to preference single-day events that are back-to-back. With our multi-day approach to judging, though, teams should recognize they will only be able to win a single judged team award during a given weekend. We know this may affect the points available to District teams and are discussing options. Our goal is to have full information about how back-to-back events may affect District points before preferencing opens. This is something new for FIRST Robotics Competition, but we see this as a way for teams to experience in-person events when they might otherwise not be able to play.

We continue to post the events that will be available for the 2022 season as we learn about them and all should be in by the time preferencing opens on the 14th.

Kit of Parts

The Kit of Parts webpage content from 2021 has been archived  and the page now reflects public information for 2022. Here’s what we think you want to know…


Important dates regarding the 2022 Kit of Parts are as follows. Keep reading for more information.

  • October 14 - 21: Drive base opt out window (Add to Calendar)
  • November 18: Pre-Kickoff Vouchers (Add to Calendar)
  • November 18 - December 2: FIRST Choice Round 1 (Add to Calendar)
  • January 8: Kickoff Vouchers go live (Add to Calendar)
  • January 8 – 20: FIRST Choice Round 2 (Add to Calendar)
  • January 28 – April 15: FIRST Choice Open ordering (Add to Calendar)

Kickoff Kits: Drive Base Opt Out

Your 2022 Kickoff Kit will again include a drive base kit! Maybe; it’s up to you if you’re a veteran team.

Veteran teams are invited to choose a $450 Voucher from AndyMark (available Nov. 18 when pre-Kickoff vouchers are released) instead of receiving a drive base kit with their Kickoff Kit (all other teams will automatically receive the drive base kit).

To accommodate drive base kit production lead times, this option is only available until noon (Eastern) on Thursday, Oct. 21.

We will only accept selections made using the dashboard and only the lead mentor 1 or 2 can submit.

In order to opt-out, a lead mentor 1 or 2 must do the following:

  • Log into your Dashboard.
  • Click the team for which you’re selecting.
  • Under the “Parts and Products” drop down on the “Team Options” tab, select “Drive Base Opt Out.”
  • Check the box if you wish to opt out.
  • BOOM you are done.

If, after you select the opt out (but before the deadline), your team changes their mind about their selection, you can change your selection in the dashboard.

If a team does nothing by the deadline, they will be assigned the ‘default’ option of receiving the drive base kit as part of their Kickoff Kit.

We recognize that we are asking you to make a decision about a partially defined product, which can lead to frustration. Our goal is to give you as much information as possible without revealing details about the game. For example, a drive base with significant ground clearance may imply some type of obstacle on the field that robots would likely have to traverse. If we revealed details such as ground clearance, we would be giving away too much of the game. To help you make your decision, we can give you some general information about the 2022 drive base kit.

  • It’s similar to the AM14U4 from 2020 and includes a bumper and battery mounting kit.
  • Features are such that they enable a team to execute basic elements of game play.
  • Design is such that the drive base can be assembled and driving by a small team with limited resources within two days.

FIRST Choice

The FIRST Choice program continues for the 2022 season, so mark your calendars! FIRST Choice is an online repository of items that teams can request using credits issued to each team.

The plan is to host the first round of priority list selection before Kickoff (November 18 - December 2), a second round of priority list selection at Kickoff (January 8 – January 20), and then open for “regular” ordering (January 28 – April 15), much like the rollout pre-pandemic (all at noon, Eastern). To learn about what priority list selection means, visit the FIRST Choice section of the Kit of Parts page.

AndyMark is donating all the work behind housing FIRST Choice inventory, hosting and managing the FIRST Choice site, processing priority lists, and packing orders for delivery to you. We’re so grateful for their continued support of this important piece of the Kit of Parts system. 

Virtual Kit

We’re happy to let you know that we will again be releasing Virtual Kit items before Kickoff on November 18 at noon, Eastern.

At that time,

  • the Virtual Kit section of the Kit of Parts webpage will be updated to include all 2022 Pre-Kickoff Vouchers and the relevant details.
  • any codes needed to redeem vouchers or license software will go live in the team’s registration account at Codes will only be visible for secured (i.e. paid) teams and only visible to lead mentors 1 and 2.

If your team is not paid/secured by November 18, 2021, it’s okay. As soon as your team’s paid up, the codes will become live in your team’s registration account.

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While it's clear that plenty of questions about the Kick-off KoP cannot be answered now, there is one that every team would doubtless like to know the answer to: will the new RoboRIO and PDP be included in the Kick-off KoP? Since these are being changed for the new season, reusing the existing components (which many teams do) from previous seasons will be much more problematic. So will we be getting these up front or will we need to budget for them or expend FIRST Choice points on them? I think this is a question that can be answered without giving anything about the season itself away.

Hello Stewart, thank you for your question. We let the community know in this September 2020 blog that rookie teams will receive the roboRIO 2.0 and the CTR Electronics support boards in their 2022 Kickoff Kits. The REV Robotics devices will be in Rookie Kickoff Kits starting in 2023. At this point, we have no indication that using current devices (roboRIO and CTR Electronics devices) with newer devices (roboRIO 2.0 and the REV Robotics devices) will be an issue. If you’re interested in helping confirm that, consider participating in beta testing.

We are currently signing up for events, which are single day for FIRST Chesapeake.  When can we expect to see more details on how these will run? What sort of load-in time, match scheduling, process for determining finalist/winner (round robin?), timeline, judging process and timing?  Can we expect something in an upcoming blog or update to the manual so we can plan properly and explain to families?

Hello! We are currently working through those details. For sure you can expect an update on a blog or elsewhere to let you know how these will work, probably within two or three weeks. I know this is important to folks, and I apologize for the delay. We have lots of moving parts on this one!

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