karrigan at IEM Dallas, “You will never see FaZe give up”

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FaZe captain Finn “karrigan” Andersen is leaving IEM Dallas with high hopes for the future of Counter-Strike.

FaZe Clan had a troubled run at IEM Dallas, running into eventual champion ENCE twice and being eliminated from the tournament in third place. However, the team’s in-game leader is taking the loss well. On championship Sunday, WIN.gg spoke with karrigan to learn his thoughts on FaZe’s new problem matchup, how the squad plans to adapt, and why karrigan is more excited than worried about the release of Counter-Strike 2.

An interview with karrigan at IEM Dallas

WIN.gg: First off, quadruple overtime on map three against MOUZ. You’re all very experienced players, but did exhaustion play a role at that point?

Karrigan: When you’re playing a best-of-three, and the third map goes very deep into overtime… Half a year ago, they stopped taking breaks between overtime, and I think that was the first time I really felt that exhaustion was kicking in. No timeouts to go from the T side to the CT side and back and forth all the time. So, in the end, a game like that, gets very chaotic. I think that’s probably why the game was so entertaining to watch. I heard a lot of people saying it was one of the best maps they’ve seen lately. 

It was fun but also exhausting to play as it was back and forth all the time. Exhaustion will kick in, especially just after a long major only ten days ago. So yeah, exhaustion did kick in in the end. 

WIN.gg: What did the team do immediately following the loss? Talk? Sleep?

Karrigan: I think it was easy to see how the team reacted right after we lost. Many people sitting in the chairs, and there were so many rounds kicking in, flashbacks to what you could have done better as individuals and a team. We didn’t really talk yesterday. Obviously small talks here and there about what the issue was. When you’re playing an Ancient game like that, there are so many mistakes but also great moments, and we don’t really have time to sit down and talk so much about it. 

I think we are still going the right direction, fighting our way back to the top. I think we showcased our CS well, that we can play with the best but we can also lose to… some teams that maybe we shouldn’t. ENCE played great yesterday. Right now we’re doing everything we can just to keep resetting and have a bigger talk afterward for what the future holds. So yeah, we were just running on our last fumes with the guys fighting to the end. No matter the circumstances, no matter where we are, no matter what level, you will never see FaZe give up. I think that’s a great asset to have. I think we showcased that yesterday as well.

WIN.gg: karrigan, double jeopardy to ENCE at IEM Dallas is no fun, and FaZe also lost that matchup at the challengers stage in Paris. What is it about that matchup?

Karrigan: They have a good map pool against us. Anubis has been a punish pick for us now. Last time it was the third map, now, they punish-picked it twice against us. That’s obviously a map we need to fix against ENCE. It seems like they had a good read. If we can improve on our Anubis, it’s going to be an easier map veto. I also think, in the game yesterday, that we had them where we wanted them. We were coming back on Ancient, we had a good lead on Ancient. 

For now, they’ve beaten us three times in a row, but before that, we won the big games against them in the finals of Pro League [Season 15] and stuff like that. We need to keep an eye on it for any team that keeps beating us repeatedly. We always lose a game in the group stage. That’s been ENCE twice now, in the major and also here in the group stage, but I think we played much better on the stage. I also think we had options to close it out. Right now, we have to see closely when they play us next time. 

WIN.gg: With Paris over, there will be no more majors for Global Offensive. Does that have any impact on your mentality?

Karrigan: I don’t think it changes my mentality. I think the problem I have now is, “When will CS2 come out?” There were rumors it would come out in the summer break and rumors it could only be played in CSGO. I just hope we get an idea of where we need to put our time in the player break. If CS2 is played in four weeks, there’s no player break. It’s just straight into CS2 and playing all the new maps. The problem I have is, as a veteran player, is when are we switching? When are we doing stuff?” There is no set time.

WIN.gg: You don’t get any extra info from Valve?

Karrigan: No, we don’t. We just know that the game is not ready yet. That’s the only thing we know, and it’s very hard to launch a game that’s seven maps when you haven’t even tested every box, right? Right now is waiting time, and that kind of affects me, but hopefully there’s a player break. And if nothing happens during that, then I know Cologne has to be on CSGO. Take some time off and just wait for news to come. I think that’s what I’m waiting for right now to plan for the next season.

WIN.gg: If all of the active duty maps were added in tomorrow, do you think Counter-Strike 2 is ready for tournament play?

Karrigan: A new game is never ready for tournament play. There’s always going to be bugs, always going to be new things. But what I like the most is the transition we did back then from CS 1.6 to CSGO. It was a hardcore transition to a completely new game, a lot of new bugs. I think, with CS2, I try to see it as a new update, a very big update with the game. We can always adapt to that. I think the transition we’re going to have now is going to be way better than back in the day. Within a few weeks, a month, I think everybody’s adapting so fast from playing so much. 

Counter-Strike 2 map Overpass

It’s gonna be chaotic for the first two or three months, and that’s also why I wish Cologne is not on CS2. Because if you win Cologne, you have to be the best team. If you play Cologne on a whole new update, new game, when you look back, you don’t really think that the team that won actually was the best. Right now, I’m just looking forward to it, and I’ll take it from there.

WIN.gg: What balance changes would you like to see in the final release of CS2?

I think the game, as I’ve seen in videos and played a bit, I think the hitboxes are fixed. The only thing I would look into is the movement. I mentioned to [Valve] that the movement is just a little sloppy and a little buggy. For me, CS 1.6 and CSGO are often about movement. I think that’s why people love to play the game. It’s a skill to know the movement. In my opinion, that’s the only thing they need to look into. 

Right now, the meta of the game in CSGO is in a good spot. There’s always going to be OP things, and there’s always going to be meta, but Valve has been really good at looking at data and looking back six months and seeing, “Everyone is playing silencer, everyone is playing SG,” then they fix it. I think with CS2, they’re gonna be way faster if they see something that’s really buggy in the game or OP. I think they’re gonna be on top of that to make sure the game is in the best state it can be for the major in March.

WIN.gg: Any thoughts on the HE and smoke interaction?

Karrigan: It’s cool. I think Valve had to do something to the game, it can’t just be upgraded graphics. I’m looking forward to seeing how it’s gonna play out. I know it’s not set in stone how exactly it’s going to be. Maybe the HE smoke is going to be less OP, and maybe like only one second before the smoke fades [back in.] Now they’re fading for a long time. I’m just looking forward to playing a little more. I haven’t played it so much because it’s only Dust 2 and it’s easier to play when there’s different maps and see the meta and thinking about the game. Maybe in the player break I’ll look more into it and there will be more maps updated to the beta.

WIN.gg: Do you have a favorite skin?

Karrigan: The coolest skin of all is probably the Dragon Lore. It’s a cool AWP skin.