The NA Invite Top 100 is a project merging history and shenanigans with the purpose of highlighting some of the best players in North American TF2 history. Access the hub post here to view outlines, honorable mentions, and previous reveals. Tune in every Monday and Friday for the next release!
Let's get the obvious shitshow out of the way first. This project is looking at these individuals for what they did in a TF2 server, not elsewhere. Really don't want to explain further, as it's uncomfortable for me to even write this disclaimer. With that understanding, let's talk about Nursey the Medic. To start, the career numbers are slightly muddled thanks to some offclassing in lower divisions, but even still her resume stands out. Looking at the all-time Medic leaderboards, Nursey ranks #2 in total ubers with 4,359. #3 in UPH at 26.0, and #2 in DPH at 16.3 - at least compared to the contemporaries within the top 15 volume-wise. Week in week out, from Luca Goers to Ascent, Nursey would perform her healing and surviving duties at an exceptionally high level. She had seven (!) perfect games, and was one of two Medics to procure multiple zero death matches in a single season. There have been 28 perfect performances in ESEA Invite history which means Nursey was responsible for a quarter of them alone. Positive K/D games were also not uncommon from a standard Nursey match, though I did not try to dig up every single one of those. And of course, she was the Medic for five froyotech championship squads. No other player has challenged shade for the title of best Medic as consistently and as long as Nursey did during those four years. Because of their role, Medics usually aren't brought up when talking about the key players on a team, but Nursey was one of them
in nearly every relevant team.
The Golden Boy of gaming, dummy has had a long and successful career dating back to the beginning of ESEA (and even prior). Unfortunately his career and seasonal statistics are somehow sealed away, unable to be dissected. You can find individual matches and all that, but nothing else. The only explanation I can think of is some ESEA Premium perk, or whatever monster that ate marmadukeGRYLLS' account also ate his data. Anyways, dummy quickly traversed the scene making his Invite debut in S4 with 20ID getting 3rd and would remain a solid competitor on teams like Evil Geniuses
and Blight Gaming. After those early years, dummy hit his stride from S9 to S12, playing on teams like The Experiment, srsly br0, and Spacewhales
. In those four seasons he went 46-18, securing a playoffs ticket every time. For his last season of TF2 dummy joined the inaugural froyotech lineup, reunited with clockwork and blaze on the way to a perfect season and finally getting his ring. With 11 seasons to his name, dummy has the 3rd most of any Demoman and remained consistent throughout all of them. Turns out the two with more activity just happen to be the last two of the class on the list. Even as the cast around him changed, whether it was Reptile or justin, Seagull or boomer, dummy was ol' reliable
for all of his teams.
carnage fell in love
with TF2 early, and just as quickly joined the ranks of the elite in the scene's infancy. As part of loaded they took home the first-ever ESEA crown in early 2009. He would remain on loaded for the following two Invite seasons, going 23-9 and collecting another title
in S4. carnage's numbers were solid, including a career-best 57.1 Scout FPH. But it's his compLexity seasons that truly shine. In S5 compLexity cruised to a 13-3 record and carnage collected another consecutive championship, making three in four seasons. carnage's regular season frag totals would consistently climb over the next year from 15th place with 323 in S5 to peaking at 4th place with 486 in S8. You'd think that naturally comes with more hours played which while true, ignores the fact that his FPH remained steady during that four season stretch at an average of 46.0. And that includes the mixing of two classes since carnage ran a productive side hustle on Sniper. Outside of S3's lack of class data, carnage would float around 50.0 FPH on the Australian in his lifetime. Postseason carnage varied in Sniper usage, but S8 LAN saw him collect 52 frags in 58 minutes which is one of the best rates for any of the opening Golden Era seasons (with substantial time). While impossible to properly assess that against the competition, it goes without saying that carnage was one of Invite's best Snipers. Father of the meatshot 8)
and a dual hitscan threat, carnage remains one of the great heroes of NATF2 lore.
When eMazing Gaming first took the Invite stage during the summer of 2010, some may have wondered about their newest Scout pickup, given that he played on an 8-8 Open team the previous season. Yz50 then promptly turned in one of the greatest debut seasons
for any Scout in history, with a whopping 470 frags and a solid 48.7 FPH. He led S6 Invite in frags as a rookie, something that only two other players have ever done in the history of ESEA. But it didn't stop there. Although eMg got 4th that postseason, Yz50 ramped his play up to 56.6 FPH which was best for all Scouts, better than those of carnage and oPlaiD. The following season he would rank #1 in frags and FPH, and was the best among Scouts in those categories as well. In fact, Yz50's first three seasons and LANs would be summarized by dominant numbers all across the board. After a break, he returned in S11 with srsly br0 and while slightly rusty still made plays
when it counted. His final two seasons with Spacewhales and Classic Mixup showcased more of the traditional Yz50 magic
, returning to top-level form with some of the best Scout marks yet again. It's not entirely crazy to think that Yz50's peak was one of the best ever, combining an amazing Invite debut with consistent statistical excellence and deathmatch ability. Not that the second half of his career was anything to scoff at either. What is crazy is that despite all this Yz50 only has one championship, but there's zero doubt that his legacy
will continue to be thought of highly as the game drags on.
Many know and remember Ruwin for his devastating aim
, but his Invite life began as a Medic for 20ID, becoming the first ESEA Invite champions alongside Seagull and alexwut. That S3 campaign had 210 ubers and 121 deaths for a regular season ratio of 1.74, second-best in the division. He also had an astonishing 21 dominations in 11 matches. The following season his numbers dipped but more importantly, Ruwin played his first Scout match
(in Invite anyway) to the tune of 43-23 in a Well battle vs. dynamic. With S6 Blight-fanom he grabbed 265 kills (29th) at 50.8 FPH (1st), and Ruwin decided that the FPH crown would be his. In each of his three full seasons on Scout he would lead all Invite players in FPH, an achievement exclusive only to him so far in the Top 100. To illustrate this let's take S12 with Classic Mixup, where Ruwin dropped 290 frags which was good for 9th place, 50 less frags than 5th place lansky. How much more playing time did lansky have? Oh, about three hours. That LAN, Ruwin averaged an insane 68.1 FPH which is not only the 3rd highest in all of ESEA, but is the LAN record. Across Ruwin's three LAN appearances, he locked down a top two FPH statistic which mirrored his placements aside from Mihalys Flow's early exit. He played exactly 100 ESEA maps, winning 78 of them. He averaged 13.3 regular season wins in his admittedly short career. Still, at the peak of his powers Ruwin was one of if not the best Scout in Invite. He lands above carnage for the numbers game and Yz50 for the multiclassing utility.
TFTV founder enigma comes in next, and I gotta say it makes my job exponentially easier when a player with this much activity only played for three different teams. First there was loaded, where he would take his first of many Invite titles alongside carnage, relic, and SolidSnake. This would go on to become the core of compLexity Gaming and his home for the next few seasons. Then Classic Mixup was created with Platinum, and the two were pillars of each of the nine iterations. In 2021 Mixup remains the team with the 3rd most Invite seasons to their name, trailing only Ascent and froyotech. You can reach into any point along his timeline to find quality contributions. During S4, he became the first Scout to get 60+ frags in a 3-2 Yukon slugfest
. Funnily enough, he did so against MoB Gaming and Platinum who dropped his own 60 bomb that very same game. In S8 enigma did it again, and is one of four Scouts with multiple such performances. Four seasons later, he and Mixup dominated at home with a perfect season and across the pond, dropping zero maps to European teams at i46. For S13 LAN, Mixup underwent some class changes and needed him on Soldier and he obliged, even having a moment
or two on the offclass. S16's campaign saw enigma lead not just Invite but the entire league in frags with 468 and 61.3 FPH. When he retired in S17, only b4nny had more map wins and Invite championships. enigma is 14th all-time in ESEA frags, never finished worse than 11-5 in any season, and sits pretty with six titles. He is the Golden Era version of arekk: quietly did whatever the team asked of him and performed at a very high level
season after season, LAN after LAN.
Speaking of arekk, here he is! Only now do I realize that we've had five Scouts in a row. Maybe this really is more of a reflection of TF2 in 2021 and the modern age than I originally thought. arekk took just two seasons before making his Invite debut, ascending quickly with the Luca Goers roster that featured the likes of aim, Linkuser, and Nursey. After three seasons between them and bird noises, the initial post-S20 rebuilding phase of froyotech neared completion and arekk was brought into the fold. He took no time and quickly established himself as an integral part
of the dynasty that would control the rest of the scene over the next four years. He essentially played the Freestate role but for way longer (over triple Freestate's froyo seasons) and had way more impressive numbers. arekk has the 12th most frags in all of ESEA, and as mentioned before only two of his 13 ESEA seasons were in Open or Intermediate. During his first run with froyotech in S24, he led the league in frags with 374 while averaging 52.7 frags per hour - which was second only to corsa's 54.0. Speaking of FPH, arekk is one of eight players to pop 60+ FPH in playoffs (online or offline), and one of two to breach this barrier multiple times (S28 and S30). While I think it's impossible to call him underrated by definition, arekk often gets overshadowed by many of the other froyo greats. In earlier drafts I had arekk at the lower end of this spectrum and while I do think Scouts like Yz50 and Ruwin were more dominant, his longevity mixed with this
many championships cannot be denied and probably locks arekk at top 15 minimum. Plus, you gotta love the content
he put out when he was active, arekk gave us some really good stuff
TLR sits at unlucky #13 but there wasn't anything unlucky about his career
. He might be the only player to never once play below Invite, at least when you look at the time range ESEA onwards. Note that this doesn't include people like aaant who only played a single season. He joined Pandemic in S5 for his first league season, and immediately earned the respect of his peers and teammates, collecting the most frags and the second best FPH in the division. TLR proved early
that his rockets and ubers were nothing to be trifled with. In 60% of his seasons as a full-time starter, he ranked within the top four in FPH. In ESEA's time just five Soldiers have ever led Invite in frags across its 30 seasons. TLR is the only one to achieve this more than once, doing so three times, including his S8 campaign where he and b4nny tied at 498 frags which is the single season record for Invite. And if you thought regular season TLR was scary? He was even more of a beast offline. Three of his five best FPH performances came on LAN, including a legendary 65.0 FPH with Classic Mixup in S12. That's the only instance where a Soldier hit 60+ FPH in ESEA LAN history. TLR played a key role in the first two undefeated teams in CheckSix Gaming and Classic Mixup, elevated his play for the postseason, and had consistently outstanding stats. His numbers only dropped down to human levels in his twilight seasons. And to bring it back home to the luck aspect, TLR came out of retirement for a hot minute in 2016 to help froyotech win yet another championship. Obviously there isn't actual luck involved, but in a sort of whimsical sense. Compare him to relic, who got punished (metaphorically speaking) for playing on mediocre teams at the tail end of his career, while TLR got an extra trophy with the best team in TF2 history.
In every time period, there are Scouts who manage to stand out from the crowd, their Scatterguns terrorizing all kinds of opponents. Their statistical dominance a routine matter. The Ancient Era had Ruwin, the Golden years featured Yz50 and clockwork, and RGL's got branslam. Meanwhile, the Dark Age was defined by yomps and slemnish
. Starting ESEA S21, slemnish took multiple stops with teams such EVL Gaming, FROYO BLACK, and Ascent
. Let's talk about slemnish's final three ESEA seasons: 43-5 in the regular season, 2nd place in the postseason all attempts, a 60+ frag match
, over 1,000 frags, and an average FPH of 63.6. In S29 his FPH was an unreal 69.9 (nice) which stands at #2 single season performance in league history. And to think that's only second best three season stretch of slemnish's career, but we'll get to that later. On the ESEA leaderboards, slemnish ranks #9 in frags (6,639) and #2 in FPH (51.3). With 13 seasons never missing playoffs, only six players have more seasons with perfect playoff attendance, and of those only habib started in the same era slemnish did (on the same team, in fact). He played for Ascent in RGL S3 acquiring yet another 2nd place but in S5, slemnish joined froyotech and got the proverbial monkey off his back by winning it all (and going 36-0 in two regular seasons). He essentially followed dummy's trajectory except he had better numbers, better consistency, and ultimately better impact because Scout class. I don't even know if I could call any range slemnish's prime because he was that damn consistent. This project doesn't account for RGL S7 but I will say that even if he never plays the game again, slemnish should be a lock for top five Scout in the all time discussions.
Where to begin with lansky? Perhaps with this: he has some bizarre ESEA inconsistencies. In S15, the overall leaderboard lists lansky with 271 frags, but only 184 Soldier frags. Now you might be thinking that he played other classes but ESEA shows zero playtime on the eight remaining classes. Then in S18, he had 279 overall frags but somehow had 299 on Soldier. This isn't like marmadukeGRYLLS whose account is voided or dummy whose cumulative stats don't appear, there's some geniuinely weird shit going on. He's been the only player so far with such mysteries (besides a supposed botmode 62 frag match that I cannot find). So given all that now is a great time to remind you that the statistical references are used to help give flavor to these writeups and we can't trust what the ESEA website gives us all the time. While we're still on the subject of weird happenings, lansky played a season of Invite Scout back in S9 so I will begrudgingly add Scout to his player card as cursed as it will look. lansky's early years are quite forgettable, usually placing 6th or 7th, but everything changed after S12. Between High Rollers Gaming
, iT, and froyotech, lansky would proceed to be perfect like it was his job, playing an excellent leading role alongside b4nny and dropping a grand total of two regular season games in six seasons. He was 1st in Soldier FPH and top five overall FPH four times during that span. In his final LAN, he rolled
with an impressive 58.0 which was his career-high, piggybacking off his 61.1 in the regular season (jank be damned) for this 5th ring
. Even though he had some bad seasons at the beginning of his career, he was a key member of froyotech's infant stages and has lasting impact with how he brought Gunboats pocket Soldier to become the standard. We'll wrap up the project next week. Merry Christmas everyone.
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