Future of OpTic Gaming's Karma Hangs in The Balance as He Steps Down From Competitive Roster - Dexerto
Call of Duty

Future of OpTic Gaming’s Karma Hangs in The Balance as He Steps Down From Competitive Roster

Published: 6/May/2018 20:23 Updated: 11/Mar/2019 12:49

by Calum Patterson


Following the announcements of the Luminosity and OpTic Gaming Call of Duty rosters, there is one player notably sitting on the sidelines – three time world champion Damon “Karma” Barlow.

* UPDATE: Karma has now spoken on his plans for the future.

After replacing OpTic Gaming legend Matt “Nadeshot” Haag, Karma went on to win a total of 13 LAN tournament wins with OpTic, including winning the organization its first World Championship – and his third.

His time on the roster has finally come to an end, as OpTic Gaming have recruited former Luminosity player Sam “Octane” Larew and former tK playerAnthony “Methodz” Zinni, with FormaL going the opposite direction and joining LG.

For Karma however, the future remains unclear. Many fans had predicted an announcement would be made in vision, but currently, his plans are not known.

It seems that he has two options now, and undoubtedly a player at his level will have offers from other teams, but with his choices for Pro League teams limited, his other option is to sit out the rest of the season.

He could of course retire entirely, but with Black Ops 4 set for an early release in October, he will probably have opportunities to return to competition, if he was to step away temporarily.

Remain with OpTic, as a content creator.

This is certainly the most likely option, as Karma has become a fan favorite with the Greenwall. Many past professional players such as Marcus “MBoZe” Blanks and Will “BigTymer” Johnson have taken similar paths and remain active members of the organization to this day.

Having recently moved to OpTic’s home state in Texas, this outcome would make the most sense logistically also, unless Karma is set on continuing to compete.

Staying with OpTic would provide him the security he needs for his family, as someone who has a daughter this will be a priority to him.

Join a non-Pro League team, ahead of CWL World Championship

It is somewhat unlikely, but Karma could consider joining a qualifier team ahead of CoD Champs.

If there is one tournament Karma knows how to win, it is the world championship. He is the only player to win three rings, including two consecutively in 2013 and 2014. He is also of course a reigning world champion.

If a North American team from outside the Pro League is looking to qualify for Champs in August, Karma will be a top priority for them, and Karma will certainly not want to miss out on an opportunity at the top prize again.

Karma won his third World Championship ring in 2017, OpTic Gaming’s first

Pro League

His potential Pro League team moves are admittedly limited, and with roster lock fast approaching on May 7th, time is limited even more. The previous two options are much more likely than Karma finding his way on to a Pro League team.

Reliable sources inform Dexerto that he has little desire to continue to compete in WWII.

For the sake of speculation, teams such as Team Kaliber, Echo Fox, Team Envy or eUnited are able to make changes, and may have considered Karma as an option. But most of these teams very recently made roster changes themselves, meaning it is less likely still.

So for Karma, it looks very unlikely fans will see him take part in Stage Two of the Pro League, or the rest of the WWII season for that matter, but he could return for CoD Champs or Black Ops 4.

On the other hand, he may simply put down the controller for good, and take on a content creation role with OpTic.

Or who knows, maybe we see Karma take his talents to another esport…

Call of Duty

NICKMERCS rates the best Warzone players from to Scump to HusKerrs

Published: 24/Oct/2020 1:06

by Theo Salaun


Tasked with drafting a team for a Call of Duty: Warzone tournament, NICKMERCS went through some of the game’s biggest names, ranking them while determining who he would most want to duo with.

To start Davis ‘Hitch’ Edwards’ $10,000 “Cracked Creators” Warzone tournament, 16 creators were tasked with drafting their duo from 16 “cracked” streamers.

As one of the creators allowed to select their tandem, NICKMERCS sifted through 16 of the game’s best to determine who he would prefer to play with.

Ultimately, the FaZe streamer ended up putting his decision to a poll among his fans. But, before doing so, he originally went through all 16 and gave thoughts on how each of them ranks. And the options were varied, but all shared one thing in common: talent.

With professional Call of Duty League players like Matthew ‘FormaL’ Piper and Seth ‘Scump’ Abner available, as well as Warzone streamers like Aydan and HusKerrs, the candidates were excellent. Still, NICKMERCS sifted through and broke down who he truly believes ranks as the battle royale’s best.

Segment begins at 00:20:45.

NICKMERCS starts by going through the list and just expressing what an absolute struggle it will be to pick from such a talented crop of peers: “Oh, it’s going to be so hard to pick man … No matter what, everybody that I would pick from is cracked.” But, after going through and complimenting practically everybody, he starts the process of elimination.

Since Nick chooses second after DrDisrespect, he immediately eliminates Zlaner as Doc’s likely first pick. Then, he eliminates JoeWo with two simple reasons: “I’ve never played with him and every time I play against him, I beat that little ass.”

Then, BobbyPoff is gone: “BobbyPoff, I love the guy, but take him off the list.” And the “Scarf Lord” is followed quickly by the Chicago Huntsmen’s FormaL and Scump: “Love ‘em, love ‘em. But I feel like there’s better BR players.” After that, things start getting complicated.

Cracked Creators Warzone
The list of “cracked” players in Hitch’s Cracked Creators Warzone tournament.

Similar to Zlaner, Nick decides to sacrifice Merk so that he can play with his longtime duo, Maven. Then, recognizing that all of these remaining players are absolute menaces on Verdansk, he goes with two simple metrics to determine his personal preference. He immediately prioritizes controller players and the highest earners in Warzone tournaments.

That eliminates stars like HusKerrs and Symfuhny for their mouse and keyboard usage, while also eliminating Crowder and DougIsRaw for their low earnings. Finally, he eliminates Jukeyz because of his struggles understanding the UK maestro’s accent and decides to put the decision to a poll.


Ultimately, it’s between Aydan and Tommey, with Cloakzy popping on to let NICKMERCS know that Aydan’s been playing some Fortnite recently. That leaves the FaZe star choosing Tommey, noting that “he’s got great communication, phenomenal player, guaranteed to get some chopper kills off rip.”

Despite going through full rankings for his options and landing upon an excellent duo, the decision-making process proved to be futile. NICKMERCS and Tommey could only end in the Top 12 for the tournament, while the easily dismissed BobbyPoff actually came in first place.