Thursday, October 27, 2011

Quidditch Isn't A Well-Designed Game

Caperton at Crooked Timber reveals that people have started a Muggle Quidditch league. (Since it's Muggle Quidditch, you don't have to fly.) But this doesn't solve the major problem with Quidditch, which is that the scoring system makes it a boring one-on-one game for Seekers.

In most matches we see in the books, 6 of the players are barely relevant to the outcome. Since getting the Golden Snitch scores 150 points and ends the game, and the only other way to score is in 10-point increments, having a good Seeker is basically all that matters. I recall only one game described in the books -- the one where Victor Krum loses the game on his own terms -- where the decisive points are scored by non-Seekers. I guess the Beaters kind of matter, insofar as they can create obstacles for an opposing Seeker, but the other 4 players hardly make a difference. They do nifty-looking stuff, but it's usually just a sideshow.

Of course, this works well enough plotwise in the books, because it's all just a vehicle for Harry to win at things. If that counts as working well. I like a bunch of characters in the books (Lupin! Hermione! Snape! Dumbledore! Hagrid! Tonks!) but I'm not such a big Harry fan, as I think he's mostly just an Awesome Suit for boys to dress up in.
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