If you haven’t been playing Valorant in the past few weeks, what are you doing? Don’t worry, if you’re late getting into the tactical shooter, this tier list will guide you through all the first-person shooter’s agents, and explain how powerful they are and which agent might suit your play style best.
First of all, let’s get the ground rules of Valorant sorted. Valorant is a free-to-play FPS from Riot Games. Based on the mechanics of games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and Overwatch, this title brings in high octane fast-paced gunplay and adds in a little superpower flare.
Each character – or agent – as they are known in Valorant, has the ability to buy guns and use unique abilities to shake up gameplay This tier list is going to order Valorant’s agents, taking into account how easy they are to master, how dominant their powers prove to be, and how often they’re picked in professional Valorant tournaments.
It’s important to stress, however, that none of the Valorant agents are downright unplayable. Riot has done a great job in balancing the abilities of its characters and it helps that all guns are shared. As long as your economy is in a good place, you should be fine to play with any agent you choose.
|Tier 1||Sage, Cypher|
|Tier 2||Raze, Brimstone, Sova|
|Tier 3||Omen, Phoenix, Jett|
|Tier 4||Breach, Reyna, Viper|
Now we’ve laid out our Valorant tier list, we’re going to explain how we came by this ranking by going through each and every agent.
Sage is the closest thing Valorant has to a support character. She can heal herself or others during a round, effectively giving everyone a little bit more longevity in the playing field. Her ultimate ability also allows her to resurrect a teammate, making her a must-have agent in any Valorant composition.
Sage isn’t just a support though as she has some of the best environmental abilities. She can wall off areas and take her enemies by surprise or force them to give away their position by shooting it down. Her slow orbs can be great for defending points or for gathering information. Sage is multifaceted and almost essential on any Valorant team.
Cypher gets stronger almost every day. With more angles and placements for his abilities being discovered every week, Cypher is one of the most viable agents in the game. He’s good for information gathering, due to his spycam, trapwires, and ultimate ability Neural Theft. Cypher’s camera can be used to cover large areas, and on maps like Haven, where there are three Spike plant sites, it is especially useful for working out enemy plays.
Top tier Valorant players are realising that having a team spread out across the map isn’t ideal, and travelling in packs helps overwhelm the enemy. Cypher’s recon abilities allow him to support teammates, while keeping an eye on critical areas of the map. Cypher’s reconnaissance is also a little bit more suited to solo queue than Sova’s recon. His ultimate gives all players fair warning that you’ll be able to see the location of enemies, and his trapwires give off sound effects to help your teammates place the position of enemy players. If you want to be all-seeing, play Cypher.
Valorant fans have complained about Raze’s abilities being too focused on damage in the past, which is a step away from the game’s philosophy that abilities are second to guns. Riot Games has since balanced her a little since launch, but she’s not as powerful as she used to be.
However, Raze is still near the top of the list because, with a grenade, her boom bot, and her blast packs, she still packs a punch. Her abilities are pretty easy to grasp, and with the number of nook and crannies available in-game, it’s easy to lob a grenade towards the last known position of your enemy than risk your own neck in a one on one situation.
Raze is great against some lower skill players, but expect to run into some difficulty as you climb the ranks and play against those who know how to counter her.
Brimstone is deceivingly useful on the battlefield. If you know Valorant, you know that many agents will have smokes – orbs of obstructing smoke or effects which prevent enemies from seeing your position. Brimstone’s, in particular, are useful because they drop directly from the sky. This might not sound important, but it means enemies have no way of knowing where Brimstone is placing them from, so you can continue to hold your position and wait for them to push.
His ultimate, Orbital Strike, has more than one use too. Although it can be used to attempt to kill enemies, it’s also really useful for denying plants and defuses. It’s also pretty useful to prevent rushes too.
Sova is a great agent for team plays. With recon abilities and the abilitie to do a little bit of damage, playing Sova is an art. So if you’re looking to play him, you’re going to need to know your angles. Sova’s recon arrows are great for gathering information but only if you know where to put them. Sova could be at the top of this list, but if you’re new to Valorant, knowing how to use him properly is a pain, and if you’re solo queueing, all that information you’re gathering may not be worth much if your teammates are going it alone.
The archer also has his drone, which again, is great for reconnaissance, but it’ll give away your position pretty quickly. Like Cypher’s camera, it has a dart to mark opponents, but it can be easily destroyed and hard to hide.
If you like your Overwatch, then you probably already know Omen’s abilities quite well. The agent, which is suspiciously like Blizzard’s Reaper, has teleportation abilities. He can be everywhere and anywhere and if played right, can be a deadly agent against a well organised team.
Omen has powerful abilities, but being unpredictable is key. Well versed players will know standard Omen plays, so if you want to get the edge on enemy teams you’re going to want to get creative. His smokes are helpful and his paranoia ability is great for blinding enemies hiding just around the corner. If you’re new to the game, Omen is a really fun agent to try out.
Phoenix is the second most self-sufficient agent on the roster. He’s a fiery (literally) Londoner who controls various flame abilities. Like Viper, he can put up a wall which prevents enemies’ sight lines, and like Brimstone he’s got a Molotov. Although these abilities hurt other players, they also heal Phoenix. His ultimate ‘Run it Back’ means the agent can run in, hopefully, take down an agent or two, before being teleported back to the start of the ultimate with all his health restored. This makes it a great ability for aggressive players with little risk involved. Mix these together and Phoenix is a good team player, providing he’s used right of course.
Phoenix isn’t at the top of the list, though, because all his abilities are found in other agents too. He’s a good generalist, but apart from his ultimate, there is nothing unique to him. If you’re planning a precise strategy, then you might want to use another agent in his place.
Jett is the fastest agent in the roster. Although she doesn’t have the same surprise elements that Omen may have in teleportation, Jett can startle players by her quick movements and vertical abilities. The Korean duelist commands air, so she can launch herself upwards or forwards, and her passive means she can glide rather than fall to the ground (if you remember to hold space).
Players like to argue about how effective she is. In the right hands, Jett can be devastating, but as players learn her boost distance, and work out her usual positions, she becomes less effective.
Her ultimate Blade Storm, arms her with throwing knives, which give one-shot kills with headshots and deal a moderate amount of damage to the body. While this ultimate can be devastating, it really depends on how good your aim is. All in all, Jett’s abilities don’t matter anywhere near as much as the player’s instincts and predictions.
Breach is possibly one of the most complex agents in the game. His abilities can often take their toll on teammates and prompt arguments if used incorrectly. Without proper coordination, there’s a whole host of things that can happen as a direct result of Breach’s abilities.
But even with a bright team following orders, Breach requires a lot of information from his teammates to be useful in a firefight. His Aftershock is great to flush an enemy out of hiding and his Fault Line is great for big gatherings. Without a Sova or a Cypher though, Breach’s effectiveness can falter and it quickly turns into a game of guessing who might be on the other side of a wall.
Reyna was, at first, a little bit of a surprise to players. The playerbase was just starting to settle into a routine, knowing what agents did what, and where they were best placed, when all of a sudden this new agent arrived with new abilities. Now players have had time to work our her ability Leer, they’ve figured out she’s quite a selfish agent, with not much to offer when it comes to team play.
Unlike Phoenix, Raze, or Jett, Reyna’s abilities revolve around her surviving a long time. Dismiss and Devour are solely self-preservation methods, and Empress gives Reyna buffs. She is scary on her own, but when you’re in a game that’s about teamwork, these abilities aren’t enough on their own to be effective.
Viper is a situational agent. Her theme is poison which does provide some neat effects but Viper’s main ability is being able to block sight lines on command. Unlike any other agent, her smoke orb and smoke line is placed and then turned on and off with a press of a button. This is useful for hiding allies sneaking onto a point and confusing for the enemy team.
Unfortunately, these skills are pretty situational. Viper is great on Bind, since she can cover a lot of A and B site, but her abilities aren’t very well suited to the likes of Ascent. This is why she’s at the bottom of this list.
If you’re got a big old plan you want to execute, Viper is your agent, otherwise you’re going to need to rely on someone else.
And that’s that. If you’re planning on making your way all the way to Radiant in Valorant ranked, then you’re definitely going to need to get to grips with different agents. Obviously the meta will change with each and every update, so make sure you check back here to see where the game’s agents place in the future.