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Playing With / Golden Snitch

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Basic Trope: The final round practically invalidates the previous rounds.

  • Straight: Bob and company are playing Tropeball and losing. Then comes the final round — which they win, so they win the entire game.
  • Exaggerated: Bob's team has lost every event in the game by a wide margin — but when it comes time for the final round, they ace it and end up winning outright.
  • Downplayed:
    • Bob's team is in fourth place, and the strong showing in the last round is good enough to bump them up to second.
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    • Bob's team is in fourth place, but the Golden Snitch places them in a tie that they may or may not win — it's still a more honorable place to be than fourth.
  • Justified:
    • The final round is worth a ton of points.
    • The first two rounds are intended more as an extended warmup and sledging session than anything else.
  • Inverted: Bob and team are seemingly cruising to an easy victory, but because they performed poorly in one of the early rounds, they're disqualified from winning.
  • Subverted: Bob's team is in last place. A strong showing in the final round is good enough to...bump them up by one place.
  • Double Subverted: For whatever reason, all the other teams violated at least one rule/regulation of the sport/league, so they all get disqualified and Bob and his compatriots win by default as the only team to play 100% fairly.
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  • Parodied: Bob's team is a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits that just walked off the street and into the game. They don't even participate in the prior rounds, and only show up for the last one — which they win. Therefore they win the entire game by a wide margin.
  • Zig Zagged: Tropeball's credo is that each league must play by different rules, so in some regions of Troperia the last round of each game counts for ⅞ of the final score; in other regions, it's worth ½, ⅗, ⅓, or whatever.
  • Averted:
    • The final round may be weighted more heavily than others, but not by an unreasonable amount.
    • Even if they capture the Golden Snitch, Bob's team is too far behind on points for it to make any significant difference — best case scenario is a tie, not a win, and the tie-breaker is gonna be just as (if not more) humiliating than a plain loss.
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  • Enforced: "We need to create tension, so let's have the last event count for more!"
  • Lampshaded: "Dammit, what did we play so hard for all game if the last round was gonna count for ten times as many points?"
  • Invoked: The founder of Tropeball and first commissioner of the League was not actually very good at the sport himself, and he got the rules changed to allow weaker teams to join their better counterparts in the last round of each match due to his Tall Poppy Syndrome.
  • Exploited: Because the last round is worth so many points, the Opposing Sports Team plays their worst players in every other round, saving their superstars for the final.
  • Defied:
    • The Tropeball League creates a rule that states only the top competitors can make it to the final round.
    • The "Golden Snitch" rule has been declared strictly optional by the League, and as a result there are many games in which it doesn't gets used because it's obvious cheater-bait.
  • Discussed:
    Alice: You shouldn't get into the playoffs no matter what in this league, Bob. You could never have kicked your game up a gear or twelve from your regular-season quality and eliminated us.
  • Conversed: "Why did we watch the first rounds again?"
  • Implied: Bob is shown looking dejected just before the announcer calls the teams to the playing area for the final round. Cut to Bob, Darren, and Enrique jumping for joy outside the arena.
  • Deconstructed: Because the final round is the only one that has any merit, the viewers tune out for the opening rounds, costing the Tropeball League a ton of viewers. As a result, the sport fails.
  • Reconstructed: The Tropeball League regroups and explicitly asserts in its charter that a percentage of points will be awarded to each team proportional to the difficulty of each round.
  • Played for Laughs: The Tropeball League is a comedy festival, and so participants tell their worst jokes early and their best jokes later.
  • Played for Drama: Bob's team wins the Tropeball Trophy, but the other competitors feel that since they were losing until the final, they didn't truly deserve it, leading to infighting among the players.

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