'They play a bit on hard mode': Liquid's lack of an IGL is costing them
ScreaM Liquid
ISTANBUL, TURKEY - SEPTEMBER 11: Adil "ScreaM" Benrlitom of Team Liquid competes at the VALORANT Champions 2022 Istanbul Playoffs Stage on September 11, 2022 in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Lance Skundrich/Riot Games)

‘They play a bit on hard mode’: Liquid’s lack of an IGL is costing them

ScreaM: 'I don't know if it's IGL, I don't know if it's individual mistakes.'

Team Liquid have been eliminated from VALORANT Champions 2022 after being flattened by regional rivals Fnatic in the lower bracket. According to members of Fnatic, the absence of a dedicated IGL on Liquid was part of what made the win possible.

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Team Liquid does not have a single IGL — in-game leader — who calls all the team’s strategies, instead sharing the duty. As often as not, the responsibility falls to Adil “ScreaM” Benrlitom, who juggles the role with his other hats as duelist and one of the team’s principal fraggers.

“I don’t know if it’s IGL, I don’t know if it’s individual mistakes,” ScreaM said in the press conference after Liquid’s loss to Fnatic. “I have no idea. Didn’t feel like it was the IGL for me, but I don’t know. We’ll see what happens after this event.”

ScreaM and his teammates were highly critical of their own gameplay during the match. They felt that Fnatic outperformed them in every way.

“There’s a good Liquid and a bad Liquid,” ScreaM said. “Today was probably the worst Liquid I’ve ever seen.”

“I don’t think anyone’s gonna be happy with top eight,” Dom “soulcas” Sulcas said. “It’s kind of hard to accept what just happened, but yeah, just try and look forward.”

Jamppi Liquid
Elias “Jamppi” Olkkonen of Team Liquid at the VALORANT Champions 2022 Istanbul Playoffs Stage on Sept. 11, 2022 in Istanbul, Turkey. | Photo by Lance Skundrich. Provided by Riot Games.

Two of the brains behind Fnatic’s tactics, IGL Jake “Boaster” Howlett and head coach Jacob “mini” Harris, both said that Liquid have suffered for not having a single IGL. Boaster said that an experienced IGL will show their worth in hectic mid-rounds where they can call different reactionary protocols based on their wealth of knowledge in similar situations.

“Liquid don’t really have that because they don’t have that dedicated IGL who’s seeking to improve their overall macro and organizing-his-troops kind of game,” Boaster said. “They play a bit on hard mode I think. To not have a [dedicated] IGL.”

“I feel like we’ve always got a good game plan against them,” mini said. “And it’s not too complicated sometimes. I don’t want to flame them too much, but I think that if they had that IGL, it would look a lot different.”

With Champions out of the way, Team Liquid are done for the 2022 VALORANT Champions Tour season.

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Coby Zucker
Coby Zucker is Upcomer's resident CS:GO writer. He's also played League of Legends at the collegiate level and is a frequent visitor in TFT Challenger Elo. He's a firm believer that Toronto should be the next big esports hub city.