Superpowers

Dormant threads from the high school sections are preserved here.
Locked
Eddie
Rikku
Posts: 449
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2012 6:59 pm

Superpowers

Post by Eddie »

From what I've heard and noticed throughout my quizbowl experience, powers appear to be widely regarded as a gimmick - they provide the emotional rush of "powering" a question and enable somewhat easier differentiation of knowledge depth in stats, but more often than not have no effect on the overall outcome of a match. If I recall correctly, PACE NSC uses powers worth twenty points (rather than the usual fifteen), and I recall seeing a couple of questions on QuizbowlDB with two powermarks - one much earlier on in the question.

This leads me to a question - what about superpowers worth more points? For instance, one powermark could be located early on in the question and worth thirty points, and a second powermark could be located later on in the question and worth twenty points. Or is there a reason that this is not viable?
Eddie Kim
he/him/his
local lad, no major affiliations
User avatar
ryanrosenberg
Auron
Posts: 1633
Joined: Thu May 05, 2011 5:48 pm
Location: Palo Alto, California

Re: Superpowers

Post by ryanrosenberg »

NHBB uses this as part of their four-quarter format. I found, when playing NHBB tournaments, that it seemed to work out well in terms of gameplay; the fairness of the outcome was not affected and it led to some more interesting games. However, that's because HSAPQ did a very good job in writing their sets so that the power marks were generally placed evenly and in a way that didn't lead to "easy 30s" or "hard 10s" for teams at the target skill level. I wouldn't recommend it for any tournament that does not have a set of writers of similar quality simply due to the difficulty in fairly power marking and the drastic effect it could have on game outcome.
Ryan Rosenberg
Webmaster, ACF | Member, PACE
User avatar
Skepticism and Animal Feed
Auron
Posts: 3209
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 11:47 pm
Location: Arlington, VA

Re: Superpowers

Post by Skepticism and Animal Feed »

This happens all the time in novelty or masters tournaments at the collegiate level. At regular high school events, you should instead be putting effort into making sure that answers are accessible.
Bruce
Harvard '10 / UChicago '07 / Roycemore School '04
ACF Member emeritus
My guide to using Wikipedia as a question source
User avatar
Whiter Hydra
Auron
Posts: 1322
Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2007 8:46 pm
Location: Fairfax, VA
Contact:

Re: Superpowers

Post by Whiter Hydra »

If you're putting superpowers in addition to regular powers in a normal set, then it probably means that the clues in superpower are too hard for the set.
Harry White
TJHSST '09, Virginia Tech '13
VP of Technology, PACE
Owner of Tournament Database Search and Quizbowl Schedule Generator
Will run stats for food
User avatar
Emil Nolde
Wakka
Posts: 212
Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2011 3:54 am
Location: Illinois

Re: Superpowers

Post by Emil Nolde »

Besides, due to the inevitable subjectivity of question writing, adding more powers seems like a way to get people angry.
James Zetterman
Carbondale Community High School '15
SIU Carbondale '19 or thereabouts

Keep your expectations low.
Locked