Sunday, August 30, 2015

The Not So General Gen Quiz - Report

Arnold D'Souza conducted a 30-question written quiz on topics of not-so-general general interest on 23 August 2015 at the Armed Forces Medical College, Pune as part of the BCQC's August Open Quizzes.


1st: Anurakshat Gupta & Kunal Sawardekar - 370 pts
2nd: Venkat Srinivasan & Rohan Danait - 180 pts
3rd: Suchishree & Kaushik Chatterjee - 170 pts
3rd: Gokul Panigrahi & Shayak Chatterjee - 170 pts
5th: Anmol Dhawan & Ashwin Mahesh - 155 pts
6th: Deven & Shivam - 140 pts


This was a quiz that was clearly billed from the get-go as being heavy on the QM's own interests, and within those bounds, it was fun and very interesting. Participants hoping for a wide coverage of topics would have been disappointed though - the only India-related question was on cricket, and none of the answers were Faiz Ahmed Faiz.

The questions were (IMO) framed well, and despite the QM's professed admiration for Kolstylz questions (i.e. questions which are not workable and where you have to know the answer), many were quite work-out-able, and one of them (on a group of 44 ladies) did blow my mind, as advertised. My one quibble was questions requiring multi-part answers - there was one question where you were asked to name two, unrelated bands from their unrelated band-name-origin-stories - though antipathy to multi-answer questions is something in which I appear to be quite alone in modern Indian quizzing.

The major innovation in this quiz (one that I expect will be much debated in the comments) was the pounce system - the first I've seen in a written quiz. The questions were worth 10 points for a correct answer, but you could "star" questions in which case you got 20 points for a correct answer and -10 for a wrong one (including partial or incomplete answers). This meant that teams that were really sure of an answer could double down and take a risk (and a payoff if they turned out to be right). As with all quizzing innovations, this was controversial among the attendees, but I think we can expect to see more variations of this in future quizzes.

Please post your feedback in the comment section.

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