Valorant Agent Guide: Viper

Valorant agent viper
Image credit: Riot Games

Our Valorant Agent Guide will help you catch up to all the beta players who’ve been playing the game since April. We’re going to give you an overview of each agent’s abilities and how to use them. You’ll get easily digestible guides, one agent at a time. Today things get a little toxic - we present to you: Viper.

Generally, Viper sets herself apart from the other agents by virtue of her fuel system: Viper has to manage poison fuel in order to use her abilities - fuel that automatically recharges over time. It’s not easy to manage - mostly because it's so different from how all the other agents in Valorant work. However, once you do get the hang of it, it really makes you feel rewarded and Viper is the type of character that really makes you feel in control. In general, Viper is an agent with a high skill-floor. She is not beginner-friendly and best for players with great map, game, and situational awareness.

Viper abilities guide: Poison Cloud

Poison Cloud is essentially a poison grenade: Thrown in an arc, it will bounce around until it hits the ground. When it does hit the ground, it emits a small toxic smoke sphere that blocks vision and causes decay damage. This smoke sphere will stay up for as long as you want it to - given you have enough fuel. While active, Poison Cloud consumes 5 fuel points per second. It can be deactivated and also be picked up to then be thrown again.

One particular area where Poison Cloud is used best is A-Heaven on the Haven map. A well-placed Poison Cloud can block off both the top and the lower half of the tower. Since it can block these areas indefinitely - for as long as Viper has fuel - it is incredibly valuable here.

Viper abilities guide: Toxic Screen

Toxic Screen is Viper’s signature ability and thus it doesn’t cost anything. The cool thing about Toxic Screen is that, once it's laid out, it can be activated, deactivated and reactivated at any point. Like Cloud Burst, Toxic Screen deals decay damage and consumes fuel when it’s active - 5 fuel per second. Also like Cloud Burst, it is essential to understand map layout, enemy movement pattern and have general good awareness to use Toxic Screen efficiently. Toxic Screen can block off large entrances on defense, while on offense it can be used to block off defenders' view or movement while pushing a site. This makes it particularly useful on Split with its many bottlenecks. In combination with her ultimate and Cloud Burst, Viper can seriously lock down entire sites on her own and do so for as long as she has fuel.

Viper abilities guide: Snake Bite

Another movement stopper. Snake Bite stops enemies in their tracks as it is basically a poison Molotov that bounces off walls and objects and only detonates when it lands on the ground. While Toxic Screen and Poison Cloud deal decay damage. Snake Bite deals permanent damage and a whole lot of it. This means enemies will not roll the dice or wait this one out - they have to move. Thus, on defense you use Snake Bite to shut down pushes or clear angles. On offense, you can use it to cut off rotates and to stop the defuse.

Viper abilities guide: Viper’s Pit

One of the more iconic and unique ultimates in Valorant: Viper’s Pit is a poison cloud that is extremely large. It partially denies enemies that enter it vision and, like Toxic Screen and Poison Cloud, deals decay damage. This power comes at a price, as it costs 7 Ultimate orbs. When active, Viper's Pit does not cost fuel and lasts indefinitely, as long as Viper is within the smoke. When she leaves the smoke, the cloud will evaporate within 4 seconds. It is possible to re-enter the cloud and to stop it from disappearing.

Viper’s pit is a dominant ability for when the spike has been planted - no matter whether you are defending the spike or trying to defuse: Anyone trying to get to it will have to enter your territory. With Viper's Pit, anytime you can create a scenario in which enemies are forced to enter the smoke, you create a huge advantage for yourself: All enemies that enter are outlined in shiny red and become very easy to spot, while finding Viper within the smoke is very difficult. On top of that, all enemies within her cloud take decay damage, which really drives Viper’s advantage home: With the enemy struggling for vision and losing life, Viper will usually win most gun-fights as she goes into every duel with a massive health advantage - as long as she is within her cloud.

Once you activate Viper’s pit, always stay as far away from the enemy point of entry as possible: You want the decay damage to do its work, so you can pick people off when they are low on health. You also want to make sure that there is only one angle to watch and that all your sight-lines within the smoke are clear - you don’t want to be in your advantageous cloud only for the opponent to see you before you can see them.

A slick mind game is to leave the smoke for just under four seconds and return. Popping in and out of the smoke will definitely catch enemies off guard - but be careful because leaving the smoke gets rid of your situational advantage.

Viper guide: Tips & tricks

Agent viper valorant
If played right, Viper can be suffocating to go up against. (Image credit: Riot Games)
  • Viper’s best map in Valorant is definitely Split - with its tight bottlenecks, Viper can lock down and defend entire sites on her own and, on attack, she can provide cover and safety for her team. The special thing about Viper is that she can leave her smokes and her wall up as long as she has fuel. With the right fuel management, this can be decisive at the end of rounds when it's time to defuse or plant.
  • Decay damage deals damage to armor and health but it can’t kill you and you’ll heal back up to your original health and armor once you leave whatever was causing the decay damage.
  • Decay damage also affects teammates, so be careful where you place or use your abilities. Ideally, communicate it with your team.
  • Fuel management is crucial for Viper. The fuel will always be displayed in the middle of your ability HUD. Fuel recharges automatically when no abilities are in use. Poison Cloud and Toxic Screen cost you 5 Fuel per second. Whenever you have fuel, you can use the abilities. Deactivate your smokes and or walls when they are no longer needed so that they can recharge.
  • Your fuel goes to zero as soon as you’re dead and all your abilities deactivate. Thus, it might be preferable for you to not be the first peeker - your abilities and their utility are needed active in the field.
  • Viper has a high very high skill floor and map awareness is crucial. Luckily you get a white line on your mini-map before laying down your wall, which will help you when placing it.

That’s it for Viper. For more Valorant guides, EarlyGame has got you covered:

Next Tuesday we will be looking at Valorant’s new agent Reyna, as she's already hit the game. Stay tuned for more Valorant Agent Guides, every Tuesday and Thursday, here on EarlyGame.