To the untrained muggle eye, the Quidditch scoring system in Harry Potter is a bit of a nightmare.
But no! JK Rowling has stepped in how to explain how the fiercely competitive magical game is actually “the human condition” itself.
For those unfamiliar with the rules of the game, Quidditch sees two teams go head-to-head (and broom-to-broom) to score more points than each other.
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Goals are worth 10 points each, but each team also has a “Seeker” whose sole task is to catch the elusive golden Snitch. That earns them 150 points and ends the game.
That means any Seeker whose team is down more than 150 points has a perverse incentive not to catch the Snitch, and catching it can lose them the game (think Viktor Krum in the World Cup Final in Goblet of Fire). And in most games, the Seeker’s success can also make other goals barely matter at all.
Not so, says Rowling.
“It makes total sense,” she wrote in response to a message on Twitter. “There’s glamour in chasing an elusive lucky break, but teamwork and persistence can still win the day.
“Everyone’s vulnerable to blows of fate and obstructive people, and success means rising above them. Quidditch is the human condition. You’re welcome.”
It makes total sense. There's glamour in chasing an elusive lucky break, but teamwork and persistence can still win the day. Everyone's vulnerable to blows of fate and obstructive people, and success means rising above them. Quidditch is the human condition. You're welcome. pic.twitter.com/0VYCgo13xh
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) October 9, 2018
JK Rowling always does things for a reason…