Interview with DIG CS:GO captain, Xizt reflecting on FLASHPOINT
Tue 28th Apr 2020 - 7:48pm
Dignitas CS:GO recently came back from Los Angeles after competing in FLASHPOINT. We reached out to Richard "Xizt" Landström, the captain of the team, to know his thoughts on the results, the new Major qualifying process and how he sees the evolution of the team since its inception.
FLASHPOINT didn’t end the way you wanted. What do you take away from your participation in the league?
Xizt: To start things off we had some issues - hallzerk couldn't go with us due to Visa issues, so we decided to take GuardiaN in his place, which meant we had to talk in English, making it a lot harder for us teamplay-wise. But we had issues overall, first with the Visa and then all this situation with the coronavirus. It is very unfortunate, but at the same time, we got really close to each other and I think we became much better after FLASHPOINT. We learned a lot, but the results were very bad, obviously.
How much did you have to change your calling style due to playing with GuardiaN as a stand-in for hallzerk?
Xizt: I think GuardiaN and hallzerk are two very different kind of AWPers. hallzerk is more aggressive, a player from the "new-era", making plays by itself while GuardiaN is more old-school like the rest of us. Not having that extra-aggressive playstyle made it a bit harder for us, because we had to change the way we played a little bit. But I think the biggest problem for us was the communication. Everyone struggled with the English comms, those small details that got lost, it takes a long time to really get used to it. For me, personally, [it] became very hard to call both in English and Swedish... the mind was working on double-speed it felt like, and it didn't work out the way we wanted.
What went wrong in the deciding match against Gen.G?
Xizt: I think our map pool during FLASHPOINT was not that great. Before heading to Los Angeles, our best maps were Nuke and Vertigo... both very similar maps in the way that you need to be able to communicate very well, it's very hard to look at the radar because of the two different levels. Due to that, we couldn't play our best maps and we had to rework everything. Against Gen.G, we played really well in my opinion, we just couldn't get the extra rounds. I think we had the lead on the maps against them, we just couldn't close it out. It was the small details.
You’re now back home, getting ready to play the first tournament towards the Major. What is your opinion towards this new qualification method due to COVID-19?
Xizt: I think it's good that they've changed the qualification system. Obviously, we were looking forward to the Minor, but at the same it was a good timing the change it. It's a very old one and not so great anymore, especially due to the delay of the event. All the teams are going to change lineups and get different results, so I think this is for the best and to have the best teams at the Major. Really looking forward to playing the first tournament!
Do you agree with the removal of the Legend status from the team and giving them equal chances as the teams that made the Minors?
Xizt: Yeah, totally.
Gaming and esports are fortunate enough to be able to still function within this worldwide situation, although with limitations. How is the team dealing with it?
Xizt: When we were in USA, it was really hard, because everyone had family home and we really wanted to come back to Sweden. But now that I'm here, I think it is going to be really weird not going to LAN tournaments and competing on the big stages for a while, but it's the best call, obviously, and everyone just needs to get on the right mindset to play online matches and be as excited as possible to have the best games. It's going to be different, but also a lot of fun because there will be a lot of matches... so many tournaments playing at the same time.
And although it’s not recent news anymore, how did the first few months with your teammates feel?
Xizt: It felt really good, we had a bootcamp from day one back when we started and it was fun getting to know hallzerk and the guys again, it has been a few years since we played together, all of us. It's being a lot of fun. Everybody learned a lot from their previous teams: friberg in Heroic and OpTic, I learned a lot from FaZe and fnatic, and also GeT_RiGhT and f0rest - they learned a lot from their different NiP lineups. Everyone has new ideas that we didn't had before!
How do you look at your improvement since January?
Xizt: I think we have improved a lot since we started the team, we have a really strong map pool now and we're playing a lot around hallzerk now that everyone is starting to get more comfortable with their roles. We're always looking up at our strats and inventing new stuff as well!
It's known that friberg is also calling in your matches. Is that something new to you?
Xizt: It was one of the more important ideas we had when we started this team, to have friberg calling as well. I think it's really important to have a secondary caller that has a good understanding of the game, that can read the situations well or has good ideas. If you look at most top teams nowadays, everyone has a secondary caller or even more people that can just jump-in if needed, and it's been super important for us so far.
Keep up with Xizt and the rest of the team on social media!