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February 25th 2002

I'm still so sad. This challenge saw the last battles of four great long aged robots. They are: LvRDumber, MontyZ, Pulse1 and NeoMonty. The arena became very competitive and now it's really difficult to survive againt strong robots like IonStrom, KillerBees, Mouth, 1070bytes, Germ and GermPlus. Only ten robots reach the 50% limit in single and double mode, while the winning percentage in team mode is now very low respect the percentages we saw not too much time ago.
Now the oldest robot still alive is KillerBees and it doesn't seem to leave the arena too soon. There is an interesting analysis we can make with the Alan Lund's Watch.exe utility (that you can download from the Files section of the mailing list): If nothing changes in the composition of the arena, the next robots that are going to leave us are Firetron, Schmamageddon, Parasite and Epa1. Then follow IlTristoSmorzatore, OneEyedWillyII, Marvin3, Fish. Finally, 1070bytes. During three contest we are going to lose a lot of great and strong robots. The analysis is made on a low number of matches, so the results are not reliable, but some of the authors should improve they robots within a month or they should hope in the upload of some weak robots ;->

As you can see from the placement list, the winner of single and double category is still IonStrom. The second news is the appearing of an update of Mouth and a surprising 1070bytes, which are very versatile. I thought that my old short lived 774bytes was unbeatable in the almost 1Kb category, but 1070bytes gets higher percentages with very few lines of code. A great result that resembles the success of the other old small robot 1kilobyte.
In the team category the Germ-series succeeded in beating OneEyedWilly. These three robots and KillerBees have very similar strenghts and it's difficult for the other challengers to reach the 40% level.

From the novices' side, FuzzFighter failed to survive again, even if its author improved it a bit. Simply there were no weak robots this time to save valuable robots.
Then, this challenge saw the Wolf1 affair. As you can see, I've removed it even if its percentage in single mode is above 50%. You can read the thread about Wolf1 on the mailing-list. Simply, the first version was a clone of IonStorm and reached the 70% in a hundred of matches, then the author was asked to upload an original (even if weak) version and the robot and it felt down to 50% after a little more of 150 matches, so I think that the real value of the original version doesn't deserve to survive.

Finally, a few notes about bdj1. This robot was a quite straightforward clone of a robot of mine: Platoon. Now there are no more fast runners in the arena and the aiming technique of DirtyCoward with no corrections is going to be more effective. I needn't to say that a fast runner like Platoon is an unpleasant thing for DirtyCoward, but now... ;->

A quick note about future improvements in the SDK of Jrobots. Before the beginning of the next challenge are going to be available some new extensions and other features. Since the authors reported to me some problems with the new thread scheduler, the next challenge will use the old one: It's better to wait than experiment.
However, the only thing that you can rely on is the new size of the robots: Now they can be more than 10Kb in size, but less than 20Kb. I hope that you can make a good use of all that space, but you must remember the lesson that 1070bytes teaches you ;)

Remember that now you can already upload your robots to win the March 2002 Jrobots Challenge (March 2nd-30th 2002) aka The 20Kb Jrobots Contest

February 23rd 2002

  • 20Kb Class File Size
    The recent poll about the increase of the class file size of the robots doesn't report so much opposition. So I've raised the size limit to 20Kb (20480 bytes). I hope that you are going to make a good use of all those bytes ;-)

  • February Challenge Results
    I'm so sad. I've just removed NeoMonty, MontyZ, Pulse1 and LvRDumber from the arena because they didn't reach the requested winning percentage :(
    I'll add more comments about this challenge on monday. There are a lot of interesting news about the next contest, but you must wait two days, sorry.

    More... (Under Construction)

    The robots fought a total amount of 18708 battles. To see the results read the Challenges page.

    Here is an abstract:
    Single WinnerIonStormby Zeke83.93%
    Double WinnerIonStormby Zeke77.45%
    Team WinnerGermPlusby Critter46.13%

    Now you can upload your robots to win the March 2002 Jrobots Challenge (March 2nd-30th 2002) aka The 20Kb Jrobots Contest

February 2nd 2002

  • The February 2002 Jrobots Challenge starts now.
    Remember that you can send your robots even in the course of the challenge, so you're never too late. The latest robots are stored in the file You can download it to test off-line the behaviour of your robot against the other challengers. To read the results in real-time simply visit the Battle Applet page.

  • I shipped the January 2002 Jrobots PRIZES! The destinations are USA, Germany and Australia. It's a long way from Italy, so be patient for a while, please.
    The experience with a prized contest was so positive that I think to repeat it some day ot other. For example, I'm curious to see if another robot can win in all the three categories. Is a prize the best incentive to repeat the exploit? Let me know what do you think about it.
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