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IQ Robot Playing Squared Away Challenge
A VEX IQ robot playing the Squared Away Challenge

Speed and Control

Each year, students can design and build a robot to play against other teams in a game-based engineering challenge presented by the Robotic Education and Competition (REC) Foundation. Tournaments are held year-round at the regional, state, and national levels leading to the VEX Robotics World Championship each April.

The VEX IQ Challenge is played on a 4’x8’ rectangular field. Teams program their robots to move around the field grabbing, tossing, and placing game pieces in scoring zones in order to earn the most points.

In the 2019-2020 challenge entitled Squared Away, teams have to move balls in the squares as well as on top of the squares. Like Italy’s Trash Robot, the driver will purposefully move and teams will work together to collect and move the squares into the correct color space at the corners of the board.

Here are some typical behaviors for a VEX Robot:

  • Moving forward and backward

  • Turning left and right

  • Grabbing a game object

  • Precisely placing a game object

  • Sorting between different game objects

  • Throwing or launching a game object

Game Field
The VEX IQ Squared Away Challenge field

There are two types of challenges the teams will tackle. In the Robotic Skills Challenge, teams try to score as many points as possible with their robotic build in two types of matches. Driving Skills Matches are entirely driver controlled and Programming Skills Matches are autonomous with limited student interaction. The second type of challenge is the Teamwork Challenge, in which two robots compete in the challenge as an alliance in 60 second long matches, working together to score the most points.

VEX Competitions give students the opportunity to:

  • Demonstrate their driving and programming skills.

  • Work together as a team to solve problems.

  • Meet new people from their community, state, and even other countries.

  • Have fun!