FaZe Clan, one of the largest esports and gaming organizations, has spent the last decade expanding its reach into all aspects of modern pop culture.
“Not only has gaming become a staple of pop culture, but so have gamers, and that didn’t really exist before we were founded,” said Sabastian “CBass” Diamond, founding member of FaZe Clan. “I think that’s what we’ve done so great in the gaming industry over the last 12 years – take something that wasn’t a viable career path or even a source of income and turn it into not just a career, but.” an achievable one.”
When not winning competitions in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Fortnite, the organization also works with iconic fast-food franchises like McDonald’s and even signs hip-hop legends like Snoop Dogg. Somewhere in between, FaZe is still constantly looking for the next in the world of streaming.
This recruitment initiative previously consisted of the company sifting through hundreds of thousands of submissions before narrowing it down to five competitors. This year, FaZe Clan has significantly changed things through FaZe1 Live. In this series, 20 content creators from around the world were filmed 24/7 for 15 days as they competed in various challenges while the world watched in real-time.
Quebec native Gabriel “Proze” Gelinaswas was the one left to claim a spot on FaZe’s roster, a $1 million signing bonus, cryptocurrency from MoonPay, a $250,000 sponsorship from Ghost, and a Win a Nissan GT-R. According to CBass, who also hosted FaZe1 Live, Proze had all the attributes that make someone a viable candidate for the organization.
“He did everything and was a perfect fit for what we were trying to do,” explains CBass. “Proze came from a background of creating content in the entertainment field, outside of bringing new concepts and pushing ideas forward. He was already doing this, whether we knew anything about him or not. Proze was able to take everything he was told and apply it properly when creating content.”
When contestants weren’t participating in hilarious activities like the Call of Doodie challenge with crane-mounted porta potties and toy guns, they were also judged on the entertainment value of their live streams on gaming PC rigs. These setups aren’t difficult to recreate at home, so we spoke to CBass about FaZe’s go-to gaming gear and how they can enhance your own setup, whether you’re looking to dominate Twitch or up your Fortnite game.
The gaming gear FaZe Clan uses and recommends
Building a gaming PC starts with the case, and NZXT is the brand to beat when it comes to bang for your buck in a customizable yet efficient design. CBass mentions that when he started PC gaming around 2018, he knew the brand was the right one. This led to the FaZe1 Live competition, where the contestants already knew what they wanted for their NZXTs.
“The actual top-of-the-line NZXTs were the ones we outfitted the cast for the FaZe1 show, and they’re specifically designed to take whatever is thrown at them,” says CBass. “We had some people who not only knew everything they needed to do, but knew it better than some of the production staff.”
Split between various mid-tower and mini-iTX cases, the NZXT cases feature a breathable design that allows for plenty of airflow alongside other options like fans and RGB lighting.
Gaming monitors with high refresh rates are essential for competitive gamers. High refresh rates mean smoother image quality and more visual information reaches the user faster. According to CBass, Zowie displays have been the preferred monitor solution for FaZe for quite some time.
“These are monitors that our esports teams have been using and using for a decade,” explains CBass. “They’re obviously very good at their job, being 34-time champions in multiple different pro games. Esports professionals are incredibly picky about the peripherals they use. So for us a pretty simple recommendation. If they use that, we should use that too.”
In addition to a high 240Hz refresh rate and a Black Equalizer to brighten blacks without overexposing brighter areas, the Zowie XL2411K features XL Setting to Share, which allows monitor setting profiles to be easily uploaded and downloaded between different displays.
CBass says that one of the things they asked SteelSeries to do when they teamed up was to create a gaming mouse with lots of side buttons. Weighing 74 grams, the SteelSeries Aerox 5 offers both 2.4 GHz wireless transmission and Bluetooth 5.0, nine programmable buttons and promises a battery life of over 180 hours.
Although there has been a lot of discussion about wireless versus wired devices in esports competition, CBass says that as long as the mouse is well made, there really is no difference.
“Now that speed technology is improving in wireless technology and Bluetooth, there is no difference at all,” says CBass. “A wireless mouse is exactly the same as a wired mouse. At least the good ones.”
Along with more sports-focused features like 1-to-1 tracking, 18,000 CPI, and 40G acceleration for smoother movement while improving response time, the Aerox 5 Wireless Mouse is IP54 certified. This makes the mouse water-repellent and at the same time offers particle protection.
“When it comes to Fortnite, the amount of actions you have to perform in a second negates the concern [missing a keypress]says CBass. “I just want what I’m actually trying to do to happen as quickly as possible, and the Apex 5 delivers on that.”
FaZe Fortnite player Mongraal once dubbed the Steelseries Apex 5 keyboard the “God Keyboard”, making it one of the most widely used mechanical keyboards for the hugely popular Battle Royale game. Along with hybrid mechanical switches, per-key RGB lighting, and an OLED display for everything from profile customization to providing in-game information, it’s held together by an aircraft-grade aluminum alloy chassis.
There’s also the $100 more Apex Pro, which CBass is also a big fan of. For the extra money, users get adjustable mechanical switches for customizable per-key sensitivity, allowing for 0.4mm to 3.6mm of travel during keypress. This allows for multiple prompts without having to press the keys all the way down. It’s not just FaZe approved either; The Apex Pro is our current pick for the best gaming keyboard you can buy.
How professional gamers hear and communicate with each other is just as important as the visuals.
“You’ll never see a player who has the ability to listen, chooses not to, and SteelSeries does a great job at that,” says CBass. “A lot of information when playing competitive shooters also comes through audio.”
Not only is the Arctis 3 one of the most comfortable gaming headsets available thanks to the Airweave fabric ear cushions, but it also offers compatibility with Windows Sonic Spatial Audio for PC and Xbox. The noise-canceling ClearCast microphone is designed to ensure communication between teammates is never confusing.
A beautiful and great sounding USB mic ($119 at Amazon)
CBass mentions that he first used the HyperX QuadCast S-Mic during the opener to FaZe1 Live called The Road to FaZe1 and has been a fan ever since.
“It was my first experience with a mic that was as good quality as any I’ve played with [who] told me my mic sucked,” CBass jokes. “I really like that this mic has a unique mute feature where you tap the top of the mic and the LED goes off to let you know you’re muted.”
Aside from customizable RGB lighting via HyperX’s NGENUITY software, the QuadCast S Mic has four selectable recording polar patterns, making it ideal for everything from solo streams to group podcasts. It earned a close second place in our ranking of the best microphones thanks to its clear sound quality and attractive aesthetics.
A reliable chair for work and leisure (
$289 $170 at Amazon)
A comfortable gaming chair is essential for esports players. The Respawn 200 gaming chair features an adjustable headrest pillow, lumbar support and full-body customized support. It can also be tilted at an angle of up to 130 degrees and offers both height and depth adjustment.
According to CBass, Respawn makes chairs that not only look like someone took them out of a race car.
“They just make good chairs,” he says. “These are chairs that I use and sit in every day in our Toronto office. They’re just so comfortable and double as a gaming chair and a traditional office chair.”
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