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Pottermore: Quidditch World Cup, part 4

07 Aug

LOTEN:

So, Pottermore wankery, now we’re into the quarter finals. (There’s even a printable wall chart so people can pin it to the wall and keep a record of who gets eliminated each round. If I ever find someone who’s done it I’m going to kill them with a hammer for their own good, lol.) No real name fail, though a few of the Welsh names are pretty questionably not Welsh. The Welsh and Brazilian managers had a brawl after Rita Skeeter (who sadly still exists and is somehow still a journalist) got the Brazilian manager drunk enough to insult the Welsh team, the Welsh manager was arrested for cursing him (apparently his skin has ‘almost regrown’ lol serious injury is hilarious lol), who the fuck cares. The actual match was pretty much an afterthought, the reporter pretending to be Ginny clearly doesn’t really care any more than we do.


 

MITCHELL:

Oy. Really? A printable bracket chart for people to put on their walls? I don’t think I’d have believed it if you hadn’t told me, but it really does look like she’s trying to get people to treat this like it’s an actual sport tournament going on in the actual world. I mean, okay, I’ve nothing against roleplaying really but it seems a strange thing to try to do it with, and I don’t recall Pottermore having presented itself as roleplay before this… it just sounds odd. I know what you mean though, if I found out someone were actually taking this shit remotely seriously I’d probably be terrified also 😛 I don’t even know what to do with the drunken brawl or whatever it is – “skin almost regrown”? How on earth have Potterverse wizards not driven themselves to extinction already with their sheer trigger-happy stupidity? How did they even live long enough to develop “healing” to counteract all the damage they’re constantly doing to each other?


 

LOTEN:

Yeah, I’m getting that impression too, and you’re right that it is very weird. This is the first time they’ve done something in ‘real time’ apart from the House cups; all the updates have always just been the canon content before. I suppose it’s just because of the World Cup this year, but even so, it’s pretty odd. (As for roleplaying, the site’s never done it officially but oh dear God the amount of really really really shit roleplay that goes on on the messageboards there…) And yeah, the fight just makes no sense, does it. The next match is scheduled for tomorrow, because apparently all the quarter-final matches are going to be two days apart despite the fact it’s impossible to predict how long each game will last. Oh look, JK forgot how her creation works again.


 

MITCHELL:

The House cups make sense as a thing to do in ‘real time’ since they actually depend on input from the players. The Quidditch thing is nothing like that, it’s just wait a bit and get fed a bunch of nonsense, rinse, repeat. What’s kind of sad is that I can actually imagine some ways to make something like this work – I don’t know if they do this sort of thing with World Cup football but over here (in particular with college basketball) it’s a popular thing to have people guess what the final brackets are going to look like and place bets and so on; they could easily have done something like that here. Or make a system similar to fantasy sports and let people choose players and compete (I have no idea how fantasy sports work really, lol, and because Quidditch isn’t a particularly coherent game it might not work that well, but in theory all you’d need is a weighted random number generator and a bunch of spreadsheets). Do either of those and you’ve given people a reason to care about the outcomes of these supposed matches and you might actually be able to drum up a bit of enthusiasm. I compared the current form to roleplaying because there’s really no other reason to give a shit, though honestly that might be an insult to roleplaying and now I feel badly about saying that (ugh, I can imagine the awful roleplay on the boards though, please do spare me the details).

And of course she forgot that Quidditch matches don’t last for consistent lengths, though in fairness that’s terrible game design (baseball can go fuck itself too) so I’m not sure how much I should object to a retcon there. It actually occurs to me that if the game were timed rather than ending when the Snitch were caught, the Snitch isn’t nearly as stupid – you’d probably want to make it worth fewer points, and either have multiples of them or release them after they’re caught etc so it’s not a one-time deal (plus maybe eliminating the Seeker position and having all players allowed to catch them), but then it’s just an additional source of points rather than the only thing that matters for winning the game.


 

LOTEN:

Yeah, I’m pretty sure that happens in football too, not just the World Cup but all the endless leagues and tournaments that seem to happen all bloody year 😛 You’re right, if you’re going to do something like this you need to treat it like a real sport – but on the other hand imagine just how sad and pathetic that would be? Maybe we should be glad it’s only as bad as it is, lol.


 

MITCHELL:

Fair enough; I thought there was probably something like that but I wasn’t certain. I think it would be slightly less pathetic if they were treating it more like a real sport actually, if only because then there’s at least a little audience participation and they have more of an excuse for caring. As it stands it’s just “be fed irrelevant bullshit periodically” and I can’t imagine what anyone gets out of it.


 

LOTEN:

I think what we’re meant to get out of it is a distraction to stop us wondering when the long-promised next canon update is finally going to happen!

Today’s match is Bulgaria vs Norway. Bulgaria won in less than three quarters of an hour because Krum is omgsoamazing and Rowling just fucking loves him for some reason. And the Norway coach broke down in tears because that’s how all professional sports managers leading national teams behave over losing. Good grief.


 

MITCHELL:

Oh, of course she’s still going on about Krum – he’s the only player who was a character in the books so of course fans are more likely to care if he’s involved, it seems like pandering to me 😛 (It’s not like there are going to be fans of Keyboardsmash Whoever; ironically, it seems like she’s trying to make Krum’s celebrity status transcend the books). And of course the coach broke down in tears, because Potterverse wizards have no concept of emotional maturity.


 

LOTEN:

Eh, calling Krum a character is a bit of a stretch. You’d think since he and Hermione were allegedly dating for a few months and since she is actually a main character we might have seen a bit more of him than we actually did, particularly since Harry worships all Quidditch players and Ron’s a fanboy at least some of the time, but no. JK just seems really, really proud of him, hence his pointless cameo in Deathly Hallows.


 

MITCHELL:

True, I think what I meant to say is that he’s at least recognisable and people know more about him than just his name and nationality (I suppose maybe there were a few details provided about the Irish team also in GoF, but I can’t recall much of anything aside from the names). You’re right he didn’t show up much in the actual books despite the fact realistically he probably should have done… I’m not surprised the Pottermore content is focusing on him somewhat though, he’s pretty much the only preexisting character she has to work with.


 

LOTEN:

True about Krum. I’m pretty sure all we learned in GoF about the Irish lot were their names, and not all of those as far as I remember. I still don’t know why Krum needed to be an implausible super-famous Quidditch prodigy instead of an ordinary Durmstrang student, unless it was JK trying to pretend there was a tiny chance Harry wouldn’t win the Triwizard. But we shall observe that the female champion wasn’t a super-special anything, and we shall scowl about it. Anyway, I think the main reason was so that she didn’t have to make up stories about the Bulgarian matches, they all boil down to “Krum’s amazing and oh yeah there was a match going on.” One good thing about the Quidditch World Cup, she won’t be doing it again, even if the site’s still popular in four years – I think she’s running out of ideas.

[Second half of the quarter finals next week.]

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8 Comments

Posted by on August 7, 2014 in loten, mitchell

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

8 responses to “Pottermore: Quidditch World Cup, part 4

  1. Number27

    August 7, 2014 at 11:51 pm

    “But we shall observe that the female champion wasn’t a super-special anything, and we shall scowl about it. ”

    But she was half seductress fairy! That totally counts and wasn’t included to make her easier to objectify at all!

     
    • janach

      August 8, 2014 at 2:06 am

      One quarter seductress fairy. Which makes her a complete failure as a champion, but gives her enough of a status boost to make her worthy to marry into the Brave and Noble House of Weasly despite being a furriner with a funny accent.

       
      • DawnM

        August 10, 2014 at 1:25 am

        That’s a thing I hated about GoF, the way that Fleur sucked so badly as a champion. It made no sense to me – there was no reason she couldn’t have been doing just as well as the boys did.

         
  2. Jeyna Grace

    August 8, 2014 at 2:22 am

    I think Krum was made that way to give Hermione a character boost.

     
    • Loten

      August 8, 2014 at 6:21 am

      True, it was easier than giving her any actual character development.

       
  3. janach

    August 8, 2014 at 10:37 am

    Over on Death To Capslock a while back I was involved in a discussion of improving the game of Quidditch, and came up with three main ideas. First is the obvious move of reducing the value of the Snitch to something between thirty and fifty points, making it a bonus rather than a game-winner. Next is to make Quidditch a timed game; catching the Snitch still ends the game early, but if it’s not caught, the game ends after a specified time. The third idea has to do with combining the roles of Chaser and Seeker, but in a more complex way than is suggested here.

    There are four Chasers, and the game is divided into four quarters. During the first quarter, one of the Chasers plays Seeker and the other three are Chasers, just as is done in the current game. When the bell rings for the second quarter, a different Chaser takes the Seeker role, and so on through the game. Since different players will be better at Chasing or Seeking, a big part of the Captain’s strategy is to decide on the order of his Seekers. Do you fly your best Seeker first and try to win a quick game, or save him for later and try to run up a high score? This has to be decided before the game opens, and without knowing for certain how the other team will order its players. This turns the Seeker into a point of strategy and a bit of a wild card, instead of being the Hero of the Game as is done now.

     
    • mcbender

      August 8, 2014 at 12:20 pm

      Oh, I like this. It’s almost like it’d be an actual sport now, not an excuse for the hero to show off!

       
    • All-I-need

      August 8, 2014 at 7:58 pm

      You know this actually makes Quidditch sound like a pretty interesting game. I like the idea of adding some strategy – something this game completely lacks in its current version.

       

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