How national championships work can be confusing, as they requires prior qualification and there are so many of them. Each of the championships listed below are equally prestigious and legitimate; there is no one single championship that is considered superior to the others, as they all have significant equal merit. Also, please note that “national” originally referred to the United States, the birthplace of Quizbowl. Unfortunately, Canada has yet to introduce its own national championship, but will soon in future years. Despite being called “national” and hosted in the USA, teams from other countries (including Canada, China, and Singapore) compete annually.
Without further adieu, here is a brief guide to all high-quality pyramidal national Quizbowl championship tournaments:
NAQT (National Academic Quiz Tournaments) HSNCT (High School National Championship Tournament)
There are 24 questions per pack and 9-minute timed halves, so the amount of question you hear each game varies slightly. NAQT contains more geography, current events, and pop culture than mainstream ACF distribution, which has 20 tossups and 20 bonuses per round.
PACE (Partnership for Academic Competition Excellence) NSC (National Scholastic Championship)
The NSC uses standard ACF distribution and 20/20 per game, but what makes it unique are the 20-point powers, 0-point negs, and bounceback bonuses in which the opposing team can answer a team’s bonuses should the team fail to answer it correctly.
HSAPQ (High School Academic Pyramidal Questions) NASAT (National All-Star Academic Tournament)
This tournament is notable not only for its slightly more difficult questions than the two above national championships, but that teams are not restricted to players from the same school, but a team can consist of players from different schools from the same state, province, territory, or equivalent polity. For example, there is a team California and a team Illinois. There are no powers.
NAQT (National Academic Quiz Tournaments) ICT (Intercollegiate Championship Tournament)
There are 26 questions per pack and 10-minute timed halves, so the amount of question you hear each game varies slightly. NAQT contains more geography, current events, and pop culture than mainstream ACF-style distribution, which has 20 tossups and 20 bonuses per round.