Ian “Enable” Wyatt is, simply put, a different kind of beast. Not even lacking one thumb — which would make most people give up on their gaming dreams — could stop him from becoming a legendary player within the realm of first-person shooters. Passion and dedication are usually rewarded, and Enable’s case has been no exception. Nowadays, at age 25, he is not only still competing at the highest level, he is also in one of the sweetest moments of his career as a professional gamer.
Ian made his debut in 2006, competing in the Halo saga. Enable made sure to make a name for himself in the early days of console shooters, and a few years later, he went on to win MLG Dallas 2011. This was his first major victory, but definitely not his last one. Four more tournaments fell into his hand throughout the next two years. Once he transitioned into Call of Duty in 2013, he quickly climbed to the top of the North American scene.
As of now, he is considered a renown veteran, capable of playing every role there is and of leading his teams to success. Just last year, Enable finished second at the 2018 Call of Duty World League Championship, only faltering against a surprising Evil Geniuses in the finals. And this year, he is seeking revenge. His team, 100 Thieves, is currently considered the best in the entire world. They are a major favorite when it comes to raising the CWL Pro League and CWL World Championship trophies.
After coming out victorious at both at CWL Anaheim and CWL London, 100 Thieves heads into the CWL Playoffs with confidence, and they are, most importantly, willing to give it their all to win. We reached out to Enable, who thoughtfully answered our questions about his goals for this year, the future of Call of Duty esports, the intricacies of his role in his current team, how supported he feels in 100 Thieves, and much more. So, without further ado, let’s get onto the interview.
Note: this interview has been edited for clarity
It is publicly known that, for next year, Activision Blizzard is looking to create a franchised Call Of Duty league. Do you think this model can actually work in CoD? Why or why not?
I think it definitely can work in CoD if they do it right. CoD has always had a large fanbase, but I don’t think the developers have done as much as they could to really reel people in. I’m excited to see what they have in store.
What is your take on the fact that the organizations will most likely have to change their name, specifically? In Overwatch, it did not really matter that much, but the CoD competitive scene has way more history and legacy in that sense.
I don’t really have an opinion on it. I would like for them to be able to keep their names just because of the legacy most of them have. But if they have to change, then so be it.
Having competed in CoD and, previously, Halo for a large number of years, which are, from your perspective, some of the most glaring differences between today’s competitive scene and how it was at the time your career was just beginning?
I think the biggest difference between today’s competitive scene compared to when I first started competing is, back then, no one really thought you could make a living off of it. It was more of a grassroots/underground thing. Now everyone knows you can actually make a living off of competing, so the dedication levels have increased and there are more people trying to compete, which has definitely raised the overall talent.
What are some of the things that you like most about 100 Thieves and its culture? After all, the org’s founder himself is a former CoD professional player.
For me, even though it’s cliche to say, 100 Thieves has just hands down been the best organization I’ve been a part of. From top to bottom, the company has amazing people working day in and day out to provide nothing but the best for us. Having someone like Nade is a blessing because he was a former professional, so he knows all the hard work that goes into it. And not only is he our boss, he’s our biggest fan. The amount of support that he gives us is unbelievable. It’s truly something special.
Looking back over the years, which would you say is the best roster in Call of Duty‘s history?
OpTic Gaming when they had Ian “Crimsix” Porter, Seth “Scump” Abner, Damon “Karma” Barlow, and Matthew “FormaL” Piper.
2019 and, thus, BO4, brought along a few changes to competitive play that made the game very different from what you had been used to throughout the last few seasons. Some examples are 5-man rosters and the return of specialists. How have you managed to adapt to those changes? Are there some things nowadays that still seem a bit odd, or are you happy with the direction that the game has taken?
Just by putting in the time, to be honest. Switching to 5v5 completely changed the teamwork aspect of CoD, so it took a little time to figure out the best way to play as a “team” in this game, but overall I’m happy with the direction the game has taken. Nothing is perfect, but I think that they are going in the right direction.
How do you think you actually fit into 100 Thieves? How do you usually approach your role? Because in this team, it seems like any of you can definitely go off at any time, which is usually a very positive thing.
I think I fit perfect in 100 Thieves. Over my career, I’ve played every single role you can play. I’ve been a superstar, role player, and in-game leader, so I have no problem doing whatever I need to. On this team, I know my role. I have 4 superstars on my team, so I know I just need to focus on making the right plays and complimenting my teammates. The fact that I am that role player on this team is scary because I have the potential to go off, and, if I do, there’s no way we lose.
You have dominated your opposition for the most part of CWL, but there are still probably some things that you want to improve on coming into playoffs. What are some of these, and how have you been approaching this preparation time between the end of the regular season and the start of the playoffs phase?
For us, the only thing we want to improve on is our innovation. Right now every team is copying how we play, but if we keep finding new ways to play certain situations, we’ll stay ahead of the other contenders and keep widening the gap that we have. Right now, we are all just putting in more time than we have this whole year. Going back to back was great, but our goal is to win four in a row and get a ring.
Prediction time: which two teams do you think will end up making it out of the Playoffs Play-In?
Luminosity Gaming and Evil Geniuses.
At this point in the season, what are your goals for the rest of the year? Do they align with the ones you had at the start of the year, or have they been increasing as 100T got better?
Win. They are the exact same as the start of the year. My goal is to win every event. I don’t care about if we went back to back. I want to win Playoffs and win Champs.
By now, you have proven to be a team perfectly capable of raising the CWL trophy. Which team do you see as your biggest rivals when it comes to winning the playoffs, though?
To be honest, our biggest nemesis is ourselves, which I know sounds cocky. I just know that if we are playing at our peak, there is no team that can beat us, but if we make mistakes that we shouldn’t, we can lose to anyone at Playoffs. I’m not underestimating any team because there are a lot of great ones, but the only team in our way of winning Playoffs is us.
At CWL London, you got your first trophy of the year, and, at Anaheim, your second one. Could you tell me a little bit about how that felt, that sudden streak of massive success and finally providing your organization with titles? How was that whole experience?
It was nothing short of amazing, not only for me as a player and our team but for Nade and 100 Thieves. I know how badly he wanted to get a major win under the organization’s belt, and we got 2 already. Now my goal is to get 4.
Do you think the pressure of being the favorites and feeling forced to win against almost everyone may affect you once the CWL playoffs come around?
Not at all. That comes with the territory, but that’s where our team thrives. We know we are the best team in the game right now, but we go into every series at majors with a point to prove. Teams are going 100% when they play us, so we’re going 110%.
What do you enjoy more: the weekend-long tournaments played in front of big crowds, or the league format? Should you have to choose one of these to base the CoD esports scene on, which one would you choose?
Weekend-long tournaments, just because of the environment. It’s so electric when you are up on mainstage competing in the Finals compared to playing in the league format.
Thank you so much for taking the time to answer our questions, Enable. I wish you the best of luck in your future tournaments and affairs. To close it out, do you have anything to say to all the Enable and 100T fans that are supporting you every day on social media and at the events as well?
Thank you! I would just like one thing.
SHOUTOUT OAKBOYZ. SHOUTOUT JOHN ROBINSON. RUN IT UP.
Again, thank you for sitting down with us, Enable, and good luck in the Playoffs! For our readers, make sure to follow Enable on Twitter if you’d like to hear more from him. And for more on Call of Duty esports and the upcoming playoffs, make sure to stay tuned to Daily Esports!