I don't agree with your points 1 and 2. The point of the mission is 
to give the storm a chance to batter the levees. Actions are 
precluded if they prevent the storm from doing so. If the storm is a 
wimpy one that rolls through a gap, that's the storm's fault, not the 

1.  Ruling 17 says that the storm wheel must be allowed to hit or 
miss the levees. If it rolls through a gap, then it has missed. At 
that point it no longer matters whether it later coasts to a stop, 
hits the wall, veers off down the table, or hits a strategic object.

2. Pre-existing levees are not strategic objects. Thus, the storm is 
not "strategically blocked" if it hits a pre-existing levee. (In 
fact, part of the point is that the storm likely WILL hit one of 
those levees, in the absence of clever action on the part of the 
team, and may cost the team five points in so doing. In that case the 
team gains 15 points for the storm and loses 5 points for the fallen 
levee, a net gain of 10 points.)

And remember, when it comes to counting levee points, the only thing 
that matters is which ones are standing, and on what color of 
low-lying shore, at the end of the match. How the levees ended up 
there is completely up to the team; since there's nothing said about 
that, anything goes, anything at all.

Mike Blanpied

>I'm still a bit unclear on the "test levees" mission and thought I'd 
>get the opinion of this group. The mission description and latest 
>rule updates (from the Q&A) are as follows:
>Mission: See how levees survive when a storm approaches (activate 
>the wheel-roller). The wheel must be allowed to roll freely until it 
>either hits or misses the levees. The activation is worth 15 points 
>whether the levees are hit or missed, but worth no points if the 
>wheel is strategically blocked by anything other than released 
>levees near or past the green shore.
>RULING 17 - Levee Blocking 1
>Nothing new here; just re-stating based on questions: 1) The storm 
>wheel must be allowed to "hit or miss" levies, so the robot can't 
>tamper with the thrower's operation (If I throw a baseball at the 
>moon, of course it won't hit the moon, but did I miss? No!---My arm 
>was too wimpy to give me the chance to miss), and 2) The only levee 
>blocks allowed to block the wheel are those far enough away from the 
>thrower as to be considered "near" the shores by the referee. Make 
>them obviously closer than half way if you want a favorable call 
>from the ref.
>RULING 19 - Levee Blocking 2
>A strategic object in the pink grid area is not a problem if the 
>wheel never hits it. So if you're reinforcing your delivered levies 
>with a strategic object, make sure the levies themselves are still 
>what the storm would hit, and you'll be all set.
>The question is on the interpretation of the phrase "worth no points 
>if the wheel is strategically blocked by anything other than 
>released levees".  Here's how I interpret the rule.
>1.       The wheel rolls through a gap in the levees and is 
>eventually stopped by the wall of the competition table: 0 Points, 
>the wheel was blocked by something other than a "released levee" 
>(but was it "strategically blocked" ??).
>2.       The wheel is blocked by one of the three pre-existing 
>levees that were in place at the start of the round: 0 Points, the 
>rule says only "released" levees are allowed to block it (I presume 
>that means ones that the robot has placed there?).
>3.       The wheel coasts to a stop without running into anything: 15 Points.
>If I understand the gist of this challenge, it's to "release" the 
>levees in such a manner that they stop the "storm" (wheel).
>Does this sound right??:
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