Thursday, October 17, 2013

IQA 14

So this article is largely inspired by FIFA 14 and me imagining what it would be like to play a quidditch videogame.

Top Players
The current stars of the game. Game-changers. The players that your friends will not let you play with because they are too dominant. This focuses on quick match mode against a friend. Ratings on a scale of 0-100. Note: This is not JackthePhan's list of best players in the IQA. This is NOT (sorry, I left out that important word when I published) a list of players who would have the highest player ranking in a videogame. This is just a list of players who would be very good and fun to play with.

1. Stephen Bell. Expected to thrive as Lone Star's #1 keeper, Bell has outstanding agility and quickness that would make him a really fun player to play with. With a wide array of special moves and bursts of speed, your friends would hate trying to either get a legal tackle on him or hit him with a bludger. Bell is known to have tons of stamina, and unlike many players in Quidditch 14, would barely slow down after 5, 6, 7 games in a tournament. After blocking a shot or intercepting a pass aimed to a player behind the hoops, the videogame player could push the joystick straight ahead with Bell to lead Lone Star into a deadly transition offense. Overall: 86 

2. You know how when playing a sports videogame, you find yourself holding down sprint practically the whole game? Well, there is one quidditch player who actually plays at full speed all game and it is USC's August Lührs. Able to break, bounce or roll off tackles, Lührs would plow through defenses and score a lot of goals, creating a nightmare for your opponent. Then, with the game on the line, the snitch comes back to pitch and you pause the game to change Lührs to a seeker. Once he puts on the yellow headband, Lührs goes full throttle at the smaller snitch potentially ending the game before your opponent even gets to the snitch. Overall: 83

3. Are you hoping to completely shutout your opponent with execellent defense? Would a 100*-0 defeat be pure humiliation to your friend? Then play with Brittany Ripperger. A linchpin to the Baylor defense, Ripperger snuffs out any trouble and pounces on rebounds. Chances to score are going to be hard to come by for your opponent with Ripperger on the pitch, and they will need to play smart and precise to have a chance. Overall: 87

4. Sean Pagoada would be a player that you can play all positions with at an elite level. In need of scoring? Have Pagoada team with Austin Clooney and Sean Snipes to put some goals on the board as a chaser. Defense failing to stop the other team? Pagoada can put on the black headband to stop the bleeding. Snitch on the pitch, down by 20? Who do you put it as seeker? You guessed it. Pagoada. Possibly the best three-position utility player in quidditch, Pagoada can do whatever Florida's Finest needs to win. Your friend will struggle to find answers to his play over and over again over the course of the game. Overall: 84

Best Teams
The overall team ratings in Quidditch 14. (Here's a glimpse into how I would rank the teams in the IQA currently if all injuries were healed and teams were at full strength! Also, this negates team chemistry and other factors not having to do with the players' skill.)

Baylor 87
Lone Star 87
Texas 86
Texas A&M 86
Lost Boys 85
BU 84
Miami 83
Emerson 83
Maryland 83
NYDC Capitalists 83
UT-San Antonio 83
Florida's Finest 82
QC Boston: The Massacre 82
Ball State 82

Dynasty Mode Teams
These are the teams you want to be in Dynasty Mode. They create a challenge! These are teams that aren't elite currently, but would be fun to play with and could be elite if you take them in a videogame world and do some recruiting. 

1. Thundercats Quidditch. The Northern California community team has a great on-pitch leader in Nebraska Huggins, who displayed his great skill at Firemercs. With my sports videogame experience, I've had more fun playing with a great player on an ok team than a great player on a great team. You, as Huggins, would basically run a hero offense (at least for the first year in dynasty mode) and have a lot of fun doing it! A challenge for experienced players, Huggins would try to will his team to victories over the established California powers. 

2. Univeristy of Houston. Mainly to just recreate Phi Jamma Slamma.  After taking over UH, there would be no more regular goals. Every goal would be a dunk or alley oop. Pieces like Kelby Brooks and Hank and Justin Dugie are already in place and with the help of recruiting mode, Houston could be the Baylor/UTSA of 2014-15 and they would win with flair. Grueling Southwest tournaments week in and week out would be a great challenge for videogame player.

3. Paris Phénix. Who wouldn't want to be fan favorite, European Champion, Paris Phénix?! With players that can jump through hoops and a seeker with Tarzan on the back of his jersey, Paris has a good bit of athleticism. With you taking them over as the videogame player, you'll give them the strategy that they lack and using training mode to improve their fundamentals. Flying across the pond each year for the World Cup, Paris would improve as dynasty mode progressed. Maybe by the planned World Cup X, Paris would reach the finals as France's representative.

4. Middlebury College. As the gamer, you are trying desperately to recreate the first Middlebury dynasty. An ultimate recruiting challenge for the videogame player, you would be trying to prove that the little school that created this great sport could hang with the bigger current powerhouses. Could you win five World Cups in a row after practically starting a team from scratch? Big Challenge.

Goals to shoot for when you are bored with regular gameplay.

Score 10 goals in a game with a single player
Keep Bludger Control from brooms up to the snitch catch
Catch three snitches in one game
Complete 10 passes before scoring a goal
Hold the opposing team's star quaffle player to 0 points
Force 10 turnovers in one game 
Tackle 10 opposing players in a game with a single player
Win a game without making a single substitution

Things to Unlock
In Dynasty Mode, you can unlock several things during your career.

1. Invitation to a local conference. Your team is invited to regularly participate in meets of a group of teams. Your players show vast improvement as conference play progresses throughout the season, and you will likely find that by the end of the season, you'll be beating teams you lost to at the beginning of the season.

2. Fleet Brooms. Created by Eric Andres, your team instantly looks better than your opponents in Dynasty Mode. As your team gets used to them, you will start to see a significant gap in mobility between your team and opponents. Easier to use than regular PVC or wood brooms, your players will be slightly faster and more agile, giving your team the edge to go all the way.

3. Team Photographer. All of your teams best moments can be captured by an unlocked team photographer. Enabling an instant reply and screenshot feature, photos of your players leaping through hoops or catching a World Cup winning snitch can be saved and tweeted/instagrammed. 

4. The Tunnel. After a dramatic, long, high-stakes game, your teams' fans, and other spectators will form a tunnel for your players as they come off the pitch. Win or lose, this support is a great feeling and honor for a team even in a videogame!

5. JackthePhan. After 4 successful seasons, you, the videogame player, see that JackthePhan announced on his ESPN TV show, that he will coach for your team during the 2017-18 season. Your playbook is expanded, your players fix weaknesses due to long hours in the film room and you are given 3 keys to victory before every game.

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