What is an IGL?
IGL stands for – In-Game Leader. This term is synonymous with the term ”Shotcaller.” The IGL is the one who is in charge of making sure that everyone knows the plan, and knows what they are supposed to do. There are two key types of calls.
Keep in mind that just because you have an IGL, you should NOT always rely on him/her to call. If you know what to do, you can help them IGL, as a Co-Caller. We will touch on this later.
What is Micromanagement?
Micromanagement is a call that will identify specific setups and plays. An example of a microcall would be: “2 people below us 210 just got out of a fight, Chris let’s swonton on them and pinch.”
What makes that a Microcall? Let’s dissect the specificity of that call.
- First section of the call: “2 people…” Answers the question: How many? and What?
- Second section: “Below us 210…” Answers the question: Where?
- Third section: “Just got out of a fight” Answers the question: Why?
- Fourth section: “Chris” Answers the question: Who?– This is not needed when there’s only 2 alive.
- Fifth section: “Let’s swonton on them and pinch.” Answers the question: What’s the plan?
Typically calls that open fights should be micro, as it sets the stage on what play will be made. Calls like this are great. They answer questions quickly and effectively. So what’s the need of macro?
What is Macromanagement?
Macromanagement is a call that identifies the general economy and time. Economy would be all building materials, weapons, utility, mobility along with time as currency. A macro caller is focused on the entire game plan, not a fight at a time. An example of a macro call would be “We need to cut through the forest for mats, there’s already a team stationed low ground, we can just ramp high and use launchpad after we farm, save medkits for heal-game.”
What makes this a macro call?
- First section of the call: “We need to cut through the forest for mats” Answers the question: Where are we going and why?
- Second section: “there’s already a team stationed low ground” Answers the question: Is there any danger?
- Third section: “we can just ramp high and use launchpad after we farm” Answers the question: What happens after things go good/bad?
- Fourth section: “save medkits for healgame.” Answers the question: What is our #1 goal here.
These calls can be much more in depth depending on the stage of the game, how much time is given to call and what the call needs to be. Some examples of additions to this call given the time would be: “The team low has RPGs” or “be careful of LOS” (LOS means Line of Sight.)
The macro and micro caller can be the same person. It’s all dependant on the individual’s talent in doing these calls. If someone has amazing rotational calls and great endgame plays, let them be the macro. If someone has amazing fight planning, let them be the micro. In a dual caller environment, you create two people who work well off of each other.
An IGL will identify the plan, and the Co-Caller will assist in the formulation and execution of that plan, or completely take over.
Here’s a transcript where co-micromanagement works.
- James: “2 people below us 210 just got out of a fight, Chris let’s swonton on them and pinch.”
- Chris: “Ok” lands
- Chris: “Hit Ghoul 85 white!! He’s one shot turtled underneath you James, I’m coming up to help you”
- James: “My guy hit 40 blue he’s got height let me know when you’re on your way up I’ll go around”
- Chris: “Coming up now on your right go left”
Here’s a transcript where co-macromanagement works.
- James: “We need to get to the mountain 105 for next zone”
- Chris: “We can just ramp and glide around the south ridge but there’s a team that’s across that can shoot us”
- James: “We can go snake on the left side and just take control of their builds?”
- Chris: “Alright, let’s go early before zone so we can catch people on rotations”
In these situations, the calling is exceptionally well balanced. There’s no “LEADER” just two good callers. This environment is a perfect example.
An IGL is also responsible for making up plans for when things go terribly wrong. If a team is rushing, or a teammate is out of position and unable to fulfill his part of the plan. Then the IGL needs to think of something exceptionally quickly. These calls can be:
- “Turn around let’s fight this, we have zone.”
- “Go for max height now and tarp”
- “Start healgame, we can go down and stop others”
- “W key this both sides”
Are just some examples of quick shot-calls that are given by IGL’s It looks pretty simple on text, however, not all players are like this. Some players are much better at mechanically performing in a fight, than speaking. This is a trade-off that occurs in the majority of players.
There’s plenty of other reasons on why players don’t communicate, but we won’t get into that.
How can you get to this level of calling?
There are plenty of things that can contribute to a good caller. The understanding of the game is crucial, but also the understanding of player behavior is just as important. Knowing how teams play, in general, if not specifics, is critical to knowing what opportunities people jump on, and what they don’t. This allows you to predict.
Understanding Player Behaviour
Some of you may see it in your public matches where you take on an enemy, and they run into a house, you can assume pretty quickly based on prior experience, what angle they’re holding and that they’re probably aimed in at the door. So, knowing this player behavior, you go around and you shoot them through the window.
This is a very low-IQ example of course, but if you play in/against a skill bracket for so long, then you will begin to expect these things. (Scrims) This aids in your ability to call
Understanding of Mental Mapping
Some of you who are active in my stream or discord may have heard me talk about this a lot. Typically when I review a solo VOD, this is the prime thing that I focus on. The ability to mental map is huge. This allows you to track enemy positions and keep an eye on everyone. Through knowledge of player behavior, you’re able to assume which ways people will go based off of how people typically go. Mental Mapping isn’t limited to just visualizing where people are and where they’re going to be. Mental Mapping can be planning out a bit into the future of your game in your head. Questions like “If I do this, then this might happen” are all done in the mental mapping phase.
Understanding Target Calling
Sometimes people will just say “Hit one.” This is the worst type of callout. Saying: “Hit Ghoul 105 for 50 blue” is much better. Give identifier, direction, damage, colour. Calls can also be like “Left left left left left” which indicates to your partner, to team shoot the left guy first. Target calling is exceptionally complex at the higher tier. You don’t want to be overly greedy and chase. You also don’t want to take a fight, spend the economy and gain nothing in return. Target calling is done in conjunction with plays.
There are plenty of plays, I won’t be listing all the plays here, we’ll save that for the #exclusive resources channel in my discord ;). Some of the most common examples of plays are:
There’s a vast amount more that could take up this entire list.
An IGL must be able to identify the strengths and weaknesses of his/her team. The IGL must fully understand the mechanical capabilities of each and every player on the team. If they know that their duo is not mechanically able to take 1v1’s, then the plan must compensate for the lack of mechanical skill and incorporate more team-play to create an environment where even with the skill deficit you’re able to easily overcome obstacles. Another example would be that if your teammate is not good at economy, then you must call your expectation of economy to them. This can be as simple as asking for their mat count, and then saying “farm mats.” Teamwork plays a heavy part in playing a successful game at a high tier.
Asking questions also plays a very important part in IGL’ing
Understanding Angles and LOS.
Knowing how to shoot undercover, get easy shots while safe, and overall knowing how to scout effectively are all tricks an IGL must have mastered. These allow the IGL to obtain information and also allow his team to team-fire after he calls a sightline an enemy has not covered.
An example of this is while you are pyramid peeking, you can call to your team “Guy right in front lets shoot him, 3 2 1 go” and the entire team is able to shoot. Had you not been pyramid peeking already, you may have completely missed that kill and lost out on a point or economy that you needed.
Another example is identifying a gap in an enemy turtle. If you see that an enemy is based next to a mountain but there is a crevice that is uncovered and you can make a grenade go through that crack or sit on top of that build, you can lob it there and ask your team to team fire so that the grenade drops into the enemy builds.
This is mainly for higher tier players and players who play in scrims. It’s exceptionally important that you understand the definition of “winning.” Winning does not always mean, “Victory Royale.” In some point formats, it means, “Get X kills, and then a Victory Royale” Understanding what everyone is playing for lets you not only formulate the best plan for your team but also lets you formulate what the actions of the enemy team are going to be.