No matter how good the sailors are, a ship wouldn’t reach the earth’s limits without a solid captain. While we’ve witnessed the greatest minds on the server over the years, only two players rose above the rest and distinguished themselves as the IGL best of all time.
gla1ve is perhaps the most decorated in-game leader who changed the way Counter-Strike was being played. He has called for years and led Astralis to become the best team.
And karrigan, who reached the highest heights recently with FaZe Clan. He’s well known as the mastermind due to his incredible mid-round reads and, more importantly, pushing and making star players shine.
The conversation of who’s the best IGL of all time is a tough one, with two different opinions that both have convincing arguments. However, the conversation could change after the BLAST.tv Paris Major. Here’s why karrigan is the greatest in-game leader of all time.
Karrigan vs. gla1ve
Before FaZe Clan’s recent success, gla1ve was considered the best of all time regardless of karrigan’s mega mind as he had no achievements to back it up.
With four Major trophies to gla1ve’s name, the first Intel Grand Slam winner on top of 20 other notable trophies, Astralis’s era is certainly not luck, but instead a result of hard work and tactical brilliance. After all, it was during that era when Astralis showcased to the world how Counter-Strike was meant to be played through their advanced utility usage and dominating strategies which created a team like no other before.
Throughout the years, Finn did what Lucas couldn’t: finding success with multiple lineups and teams. Not to undervalue Lucas’s achievements, but they were all exclusive to a single period with a single lineup before taking a four-month break due to stress and burnout.
Karrigan, on the other hand, has found success with multiple “international” lineups, reaching the tops of the leaderboard with TSM, MOUZ, Astralis, and FaZe Clan.
Doing it with a single lineup is hard enough, let alone doing it constantly over the years with international teams. Some argued karrigan peaked during his first tenure with FaZe, but then he came back again stronger and better than ever to harvest every single trophy there is, which is something gla1ve never did after Astralis fell three years ago.
The in-game leading role isn’t restricted to calling the plays, but rather an IGL has a lot of influence on the players themselves in and out of the server.
Karrigan is very efficient at making his structure work and leading players to greatness. He’s done this with so many players and even with aspiring young talents in broky and ropz, which is something gla1ve wasn’t able to achieve with Farlig, MistR, and Lucky during their time with Astralis.
Yes, comparing broky and ropz to Farlig and Lucky might seem unfair, which opens the door to the argument of karrigan having a star lineup while gla1ve achieved greatness with lesser firepower, but is that actually the case?
Astralis prime lineup
Xyp9x, dupreeh, and device were the core of TSM before forming Astralis, which had a solid team with a good foundation, with all the players appearing in the HLTV Top 20 ranking. It’s hard to say that gla1ve was working with up-and-coming players but rather he was the cherry on top to guide them into greatness.
With device’s consistency, dupreeh’s entries and Xyp9x clutches, it was an actual star line-up and nowhere close to being considered a lesser firepower than the current FaZe Clan. Peak Astralis had multiple ways to win a round and you could truly never count them out of a round.
We can’t talk about prime Astralis without mentioning zonic, one of the best coaches, if not the best ever. He had an enormous influence tactically on many levels, making the team the new standard for togetherness and synergy. He is certainly a great strategic mind, and some of the team’s success may be due to him rather than gla1ve’s strategies.
Is karrigan the best IGL?
Yes, gla1ve’s achievements are unmatched and the four Majors might never happen again in history. However, here’s what you’re forgetting about karrigan:
He is a 33-year-old leader who’s in his prime time, has built & led international rosters, took them to win trophies and is the only player to win a trophy with a stand-in for two different players and positions. Karrigan’s consistently been a genius over these past few years and while he may have had individual performance issues for a period, he certainly hasn’t lost his touch.
While FaZe Clan are contenders for the last CS:GO Major, Astralis won’t be even in the conversation as they failed to qualify the event for the second time in a row. From the best team to ever exist to missing the major entirely should be added to the conversation as the team is under gla1ve’s leadership. Meanwhile, if karrigan lifts his second Major trophy, then the debate should be settled for all the doubters.