Understanding Robot Features in VRC Spin Up for VEXcode VR

The robot used in VRC Spin Up for VEXcode VR is a virtual version of Disco, the VEX V5 Hero Bot, used for the 2022-2023 VEX Robotics Competition (VRC) Spin Up. Virtual Disco has the same dimensions and motors as the physical Disco, but with added sensors for autonomous programming in VEXcode VR. In Spin Up for VEXcode VR, there is only one robot, and it is already preconfigured. This eliminates the need for a robot configuration, or a predetermined template project.


Robot Controls

Disco has the following controls:

A drivetrain. This enables the “Drivetrain” category of blocks in the Toolbox of VEXcode V5 to drive and turn the robot.


An intake that is controlled by the Intake Motor Group. This allows the robot to collect and score discs.

The intake can be spun using the intake motor group and the [Spin for] block. Spinning the motor group in the 'outtake' direction will move discs towards the Field tiles, while spinning in the 'intake' direction allows you to launch discs into the air to score in the High Goal.

At the top of the intake is a set of two wheels. These can be used to spin the rollers. 

By spinning the intake motor group while the wheels are contacting the roller, the roller will spin and change color.

Robot Sensors

Virtual Disco has added sensors for autonomous programming in VRC Spin Up for VEXcode VR.

Inertial Sensor


The Inertial Sensor is used with the drivetrain to allow Disco to make accurate and precise turns using the drivetrain heading.

The drivetrain heading reports a value from 0 to 359.9 degrees, and clockwise is positive.

For more information on the Inertial Sensor, view this article from the VEX Library.

Distance Sensor

There is one Distance Sensor on the front of Virtual Disco.

Spin Up Distance.png

The Distance Sensor reports if an object is close to the sensor, as well the approximate distance from the front of the sensor to an object, in millimeters or inches.


The Distance Sensor on the front of Disco can be used to determine if a disc is in front of the intake,  or approximately how far away the discs are on the Field from the sensor.

For more information about the V5 Distance Sensor, See this VEX Library article.

Line Trackers


The three Line Trackers are located along the underside of Disco's intake. These can be used to detect the position of discs within the intake and determine how many discs are currently being held in the intake.

Spin Up Monitor.png

Line trackers are a 3-wire sensor consisting of an infrared LED and an infrared light sensor. They measure the reflectivity of the surface. It is important when coding Line Trackers to understand the different reflectivity values that will be reported depending on the environment. In this example, there is a disc currently loaded in the top of the intake, so the Top Line Tracker is reporting a higher reflectivity value. 

To learn more about VEX V5 Line Trackers, see this article.

To learn more about monitoring sensor values in a VEXcode VR project (shown in the image here), see this article.

Optical Sensor

Spin Up Optical.png

The Optical Sensor reports if an object is close to the sensor, and if so, what color that object is.

The Optical Sensor can also report the brightness and the hue value of an object in degrees.


The Optical Sensor is located at the top of Disco near the wheels. This sensor is positioned at the height of the rollers to be used to determine the color of each roller

For more information about the Optical Sensor, see this VEX Library article.

Game Positioning System (GPS) Sensor

Spin Up GPS.png

The GPS Sensor can report the current X and Y position of the center of rotation of Disco in millimeters or inches.

The GPS Sensor can also report the current heading in degrees.


The GPS Sensor is located near the back of Disco, and is used to determine the robot’s position and orientation on the Field by reading the GPS Field Code Strips along the inside perimeter of the Field.


You can use the GPS Sensor to help Disco navigate the Field by driving to specific locations using your knowledge of the Cartesian coordinate system.

Using the GPS Sensor, Disco can drive along the X or Y-axes until the value of the sensor is greater than or less than a threshold value. This allows Disco to drive using sensor feedback instead of set distances.

For more information on identifying location details in VRC Spin Up in VEXcode VR using the GPS Sensor, see this VEX Library article.

For more information, help, and tips, check out the many resources at VEX Professional Development Plus

Last Updated: