Frequently Asked Questions

What is MechMania?

MechMania is a 24-hour programming contest in which teams of students from various schools compete to create an AI capable of playing (and winning) a strategy game we have secretly developed. The competition, from the moment it starts to the closing ceremony and awards presentation, will be livestreamed on Twitch. You must be registered for Reflections|Projections to compete in MechMania. You can check out RP here.

Who's eligible?

We accept teams of up to four students. All participants must actively be enrolled in a college or university, but teams do not need to be composed of students from the same school. Besides that, we accept everyone of every skill level!

What do you need to know?

We accept everyone of all skill levels, but teams will have the option to program their bots in Java and Python, and run the Java engine to locally test their submissions. As such, teams should be proficient in the language they plan to use. We will provide relevant installation info on the day of the competition.

Where do you go?

We will be both in-person and remote! If you want to join us though, we'll be in a designated room on UIUC campus. We'll have food and snacks!

What can you bring?

You can bring any reference manual(s) you want, whether it be The Art of Computer Programming or The Art of War. Absolutely no outside code is allowed. Competitors need to bring their own laptops.

What will you do?

By using our provided sample starterpacks, you will implement an artificial intelligence that will play our game! The goal is simple: return a decision from a function, but the logic you take to get there is entirely up to you.

Did you mention prizes?

Indeed. There will be cash prizes for the top three teams! To be eligible, you must be registered.

Is registration open?

Not yet, please check back later (closer to when RP2023 starts)!