Cypher is a primarily defensive, information gathering Sentinel agent. Sentinels are mainly defensive-orientated supportive agents. Sentinels indirectly support their team by holding down sites and stalling to prevent site takes and retakes; utilizing abilities like Cypher’s Trapwire and Sage’s Slow Orb, along with abilities to directly support their team such as Cypher’s Neural Theft and Sage’s Heal Orb and Resurrect.
Cypher Overview Infographic
Table of Contents
Is Cypher Right For You?
When you are Cypher, or you have Cypher on your team, you should expect Cypher to be able to lock down sites completely with his Trapwires and Cyber Cages, along with using his Spycam to safely keep eyes on areas otherwise unwatched. Your goal as Cypher is to keep two sets of eyes on the map as often as possible, while acquiring a near constant stream of information to you and your team using Trapwires, Spycam, and the occasional Neural Theft.
- Very oppressive on defending rounds.
- Through all of his abilities, Cypher is totally able to hold a site on his own.
- Spycam is a second set of eyes, which is invaluable.
- Neural Theft gives your teammates all the information they need to win the round.
- Lackluster on offensive rounds, requires a lot more brainpower to work offensively.
- Cyber Cage is a pretty weak smoke substitute.
- Spycam has very little health, so it lacks a lot of offensive use.
- Trapwires have almost no offensive use outside of trapping down flanks.
Cypher is strong on his own, but having some help with his information gathering ventures never hurt.
Breach operates on precision, and knowing where enemies are so that he can crowd control them. Cypher reveals enemies to allow Breach to set up an entry onto a site with ease.
Basic - Trapwire
When and how should I use Trapwire?
Trapwire should be used to cover entrances to sites on defense, and used to cover flanks and retakes on offense. Be sure to experiment a lot with weird map geometry, as Cypher’s Trapwires have some strange angles that can be abused. Keep in mind Cypher will be notified when his Trapwire is triggered, or even when it is destroyed so he will know where you are regardless based on where he placed the wire. If possible, jump over or crouch under Trapwire to avoid revealing your location.
Basic - Cyber Cage
When and how should I use Cyber Cage?
Defensively, I recommend throwing Cyber Cages beneath your Trapwires, caging off any enemies as soon as they trip your wire. This is the most popular use. Offensively, you can use Cyber Cages as a weaker kind of smoke grenade to block off sightlines. Keep in mind that the static sound is only made when enemies walk into the outside of the cages ring, so its hard to use Cyber Cage to check corners.
Signature - Spycam
When and how should I use Spycam?
Spycam makes Cypher the true “one man surveillance network” that VALORANT claims him to be. Giving an agent two sets of eyes allows them to have and work with two constant streams of information, so that they can always be one step ahead. Use the camera to cover areas that you cannot safely check or watch, and specifically, areas where you are not. This sounds simple, but using a Spycam deeper in an area you’re already watching doesn’t help a whole lot. Use Spycam to cover a totally different area, this way your two streams of information are as diverse as possible, giving more total information. Spycam’s are generally destroyed immediately by the enemy upon being seen, so make good use out of it. If possible, call back your Spycam before it can be taken out, that way it goes on a 15 second cooldown as opposed to a 45 second one.
Ultimate - Neural Theft
When and how should I use Neural Theft?
This Ultimate ability is a little harder to determine when to use, since technically speaking, it is an Ultimate that can always be useful. I recommend using this Ultimate when the information you’re working with is extremely low, as particularly when on attack, it is hard to know where enemies are, even after the entry frag to use Neural Theft off of. Overall, I would say the best time to use Neural Theft is after generating a pick onto an enemy, as it opens up the whole map for you. Just don’t die as the information is extracted, or it is a waste.
Cypher's Tips, Tricks, and Map Notes
- Cypher’s Cyber Cage can be thrown through Bind Teleporters.
- Cypher’s Cyber Cage (the projectile disc) can be picked up only during the setup phase, unlike Spycam and Trapwires, which can be picked up during all phases of the round.
- There are extremely cheesy spots for Spycams and Trapwires, be sure to experiment with all of them you can find, it is the difference between good and great Cypher players.
- Use the Spycam darts as often as possible. Even if your camera is smoked off, just send a dart through it anyways, it has no ammo, just a small cooldown. You can gain some free intel this way.
- As opposed to placing Cyber Cages beneath Trapwires, placing one below YOU as a push is happening allows you to keep yourself hidden, and when your trapwires are triggered, you can fire through the cage, confusing the enemy to end.
Cypher's Tier Rating
I believe Cypher to be an S-tier agent. Pushing a site controlled by a Cypher is probably one of the most frustrating experiences in VALORANT. Between Spycam darts, Cyber Cages blocking line of sight, and destroying trapwires, it is an extremely annoying and tedious process, all while Cypher stalls and gains all the info he needs, potentially grabbing some kills as well. When an agent has that kind of obnoxious presence, able to disincentivize a whole team from pushing a certain site, there is no doubt Cypher belongs in S-tier. Some might say that because of his weaker offensive side, he does not belong in such a high tier. But trust me, a good Cypher will make up for this weakness.
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