JL Karim Kt (Part 1): "I just played LoL from time to time because I had an sh**** connection at home"

JL

Interview

LFL2

23/03/2024 - 6'

"[At GameWard] I'm just a pro player and I'm living my LFL season 100%"

Karim "Karim kt" Aubineau, a talented Jungler for Joblife, has made a significant impact in the esports world with his dynamic playstyle and strategic prowess. Starting as a Master player limited by a poor internet connection, he rapidly ascended the ranks to become a professional player. In this interview, Karim takes us through his journey, sharing insights into his early days, memorable experiences with teams like aAa, Gameward, and BIG, and the lessons he's learned along the way.

| Hey Karim, can you present yourself quickly ?

Karim kt: "My name is Karim, Jungler for Joblife. I've been in teams like Gameward, GO, Big, ERL1 and now I'm back in DIV2, even if it's not really a comeback but more a discovery!"

| Can you tell us a bit about your background before you got fully into the game?

Karim kt: "Before playing LoL full time? I didn't do anything, I was a 'normal' person, I had a standard life! I just played LoL from time to time because I had an sh**** connection at home, so I played very little, about 200 rankeds per season. So, I was Master and then I limited myself a bit because I thought, " well, I can't play so I'm going to stay Master".

"Then came university, where I decided to stop playing League of Legends. I had responsibilities, so I thought I'd try to be a good student and stay serious."

"As I had some free time at university and I'd organised a little lifestyle where I slept from 6pm to 11pm, I played at night because that was when the connection was stable at home. Then, after 3 weeks, I became chall, which enabled me to do a few tryouts with teams."

| You got your first chance to make your mark in France with aAa and then Gameward. What memories do you have of these teams? Can you tell me about that time? First professional team.

Karim kt: "I probably have fewer memories of aAa than of Gameward because with aAa, we were remote. We played at home, even though every week we met up in Paris to play the official matches. That doesn't change the fact that I had less interaction with the teams, but overall, it was a good year to discover what the league system was, because it was something new in France after the LAN era."

"It was really different, you had to be regular, and it was my first salary. It was a bit like discovering what it was like to be a professional player. I still have fond memories of it, even though we finished top 6 and top 7 in the LFL. I grew a lot that year."

"Regarding Gameward, I think it was my best year in esports, both humanly and in terms of results, because we beat all the predictions. On paper, we had a team that was expected to play at the bottom of the table, but we found a lot of solutions. We worked really hard to try and create synergy and I think we managed to find what worked for us! So yes, I think Gameward remains my best year in esport... for the moment."

| Do you remember it best? Above winning the Prime League with BIG?

Karim kt: "Yes, because with Gameward those are memories of when I was a pro player and I didn't have any problems! I don't think about whether I was going to do LEC tryouts or whatever. I'm just a pro player and I'm living my LFL season 100%. I didn't have any problems other than playing my season."

| You seem to have had a really good year with Gameward. How did it go?

Karim kt: "It was Gameward's first year, so it wasn't ideal, but we had office space in Boulogne, Paris, and after a month they found us a house. It was a bit far because it was a one-hour drive from our offices, so it was a bit of a hassle!"

"The problem with Gameward was that the organisation had the capacity to manage a team but I think that, in their first year, they hadn't really understood how to manage an esport team. We had a one-hour drive there and a one-hour drive back. Some people will say "What's a one-hour drive in Paris?" but when you finish your day at 1am, you have to go home afterwards!"

"We didn't have access to the office on weekends because we weren't yet mature enough to be left on our own. We needed a member of staff, but they couldn't come at the weekend because they had families."

"Despite all these constraints, it really bonded the players. At the weekends we didn't play so we did activities with each other. We'd go and play the fool in the streets of Versailles; we'd do all sorts of things!"

| After your season in the LFL, you moved to BIG in Germany. How did your recruitment go there?

Karim kt: "You have to realise that after our year in the LFL, Seelame and I were the players with the fewest offers. BIG was a team we'd scrimmed at the end of the year with Gameward and I think we won 5-0 against them. I remember Reeker coming to talk to me at the end of the scrims, and I could see he was a bit confused about why they'd lost to Gameward and our team of idiots."

"What Don Arts had taken from it was that we had a very coinflip style of play, except that Reeker didn't want to accept that we'd lost when we were playing in a very random way - he thought there must be a reason! So he added me on LoL and then we talked in soloQ. He was still joking about my aggressive Gameward style, so yes, it all came naturally."

"I sent him a private message to ask him what they were doing next year and he replied that they didn't have the budget to recruit us, because with SLT, we absolutely wanted to play together. No LFL team offered us both a contract. So we went and looked abroad, so we made it clear to BIG that the salary wasn't a problem, and that was that."

"Incidentally, BIG was my only offer I think during the mercato, which was very chaotic because SLT and Enjawe were the two players who really stood out and Seelame and I were left out in the cold."

| It's your first time playing in a foreign country. What's it like for a player to have to move all his life to a different environment?

Karim kt: "We moved to Berlin at the beginning of January. We had a flat in the centre of Berlin. Every morning, we had a BIG van with a logo that came to pick us up. When I joined the team, it was the first time they'd used the office system. They were still undergoing renovations and so on. We really had everything we needed: gym, canteen, and everything else. It was really quite good."

"It was the first time I'd moved, but I think it was easier for me than for SLT because I think I'm more sociable than he is. I don't know what it was like for him, but it didn't change anything in my life. When I arrived there, I got on really well with my teammates and we really became buddies very quickly. I think that's why our results improved because we had a good relationship."

"So, the only regret I had in Germany was that I moved during the Covid period. Everything was closed, so I didn't do anything other than travel between the flat and the office, even though, to be honest, the city isn't that beautiful!"

| How did the change of structure between BIG and Gameward go? What were the differences between the two structures?

Karim kt: "It made me change because I noticed that at the time, BIG was at the service of the players whereas at Gameward, it was the players who were at the service of the organisation. You could really be a princess at times!"

"A simple anecdote that never happened to me in any of my French teams: I had bought the new Logitech G-Pro that had just come out, and a week after receiving it, the head of esport came into the room. He sees our new mice and asks us “who bought them?”, I tell him we did, and he tells me to send him the receipt because it's the organisation that's supposed to be paying for it!"

"That's why I think that BIG is really an organisation that is at the service of the player so that he is in the best possible conditions. This mentality is really unique to BIG because I know that some organisations want to move in that direction but, over the course of my career, I've really only noticed it with them."

- Plad -