In this guide, I will be going into depth about the basics of Cypher, and how you can effectively use all of his abilities. I will show some good cam spots, great wires you can use, strong cages, and more.
In my opinion, Cypher is one of the strongest characters in Valorant. His ability to lock down sites and gather a ton of information on both attack and defense is super valuable. While it is easy to think that Cypher is relatively useless on attack, when used correctly he is really good. He can watch multiple flanks and gather a ton of information, punishing players that play aggressive. I will be using Split as an example for basically everything that I talk about in this guide, but all of the ideas that I talk about can be applied to any map of course.If you have watched good Cypher players before, this is nothing new to you, however, I feel like a lot of newer players are unaware of this really useful Cypher tech. Put simply, there is an invisible limit to how high you can place cameras on every map, but standing on higher elevations, jumping, and jumping on those higher elevations, lets you place cameras a little bit past this limit. It's hard to describe with no visual aid, so I included a video below to help. You will see me use this tech to place some other cameras that I show later on as well if you are still confused.
The difference between a good and bad cam is pretty simple. Bad cams are put in places where they can easily be shot on defense, and the enemy team does not have to over-extend or commit to a site in order for the cam to be shot. A good cam however is placed where the enemy team can be punished for shooting the cam, and you can gather a ton of information with it.
This is a cam that I use pretty often. As you can see, the enemy team has to overextend and expose themselves to a bunch of angles that they can easily be punished for, just to shoot the cam. It also allows you to potentially gather a lot of really valuable information (if they are committing to site, pushing ramps, etc.).This is a cam I have been using a ton lately that I don't think a lot of people know about. You can clearly see if the enemy team is pushing A site, and for post-plant retake, this cam clears screens. Best of all, its impossible to shoot from A main thanks to the window. Cypher's cam on attack is really good for clearing angles, getting early information, and gathering info when you are defending the bomb after planting.
In the video below, I show a cam that clears the close-right angle off spawn that can tell if your team is getting pushed, or if someone is playing that close angle. This is a pretty common angle that I see a lot of people play with a judge. This cam allows you to safely clear that angle, and also get some possibly good info on screens.
One thing that I think is really beneficial is placing aggressive cameras on defense when the enemy is on an eco. Cams like I show in the video below give a lot of early information that can quickly let your team rotate. If I place this cam and hear the enemy team fast pushing B at the start of the round, I will either:
1) Pull the cam back so I can use it later in the round if I have to
2) I will leave the cam where I placed it, but I will purposefully not pop it until a little later in the round so that I can clear B main and check to see if they are rotating.
Like I briefly mentioned above, I will sometimes purposefully not pop cams so that I can use them later in the round for info. This is generally beneficial for when you are retaking a site.A good tripwire on defense is generally a wire that is placed so that the enemy team has to commit to a site to shoot it. To go into more detail, I am talking about wires that are placed deeper in site so that you can get kills while the enemy team is pushing.
To better describe this, the video below shows a couple good wires that I use regularly on Split. All of the wires besides 1 are for kills for when the enemy team is pushing pretty deep into site. Obviously, it's good to combine these wires with cages so that you can safely get kills while the enemy is stuck on the trip.
I see a lot of lower ELO Cypher players bundling trips really close together on sites. This is technically not the worst thing ever, and it can work in some situations, but generally try to keep them apart.
On Split, putting a wire B heaven and a wire somewhere on B site is really good. The wire B heaven will help slow down the push, and can even help your teammate that is playing B heaven get some easy kills.Placing trips for flank is an essential part of Cypher when on attack. The 2 videos below show some common wires that you can place for flank. This first wire is really only good if you are pushing mid or A. If you place this wire for flank and you push B, the enemy team can easily jump over the wire. This wire strictly holds the push from B main.
You may notice that when I place tripwires for flank, I crouch and place the wires head-level. This makes it so that enemies can't jump over the wire, and they also can't crouch under it. Agents like Jett and Raze however can still updraft or satchel over the wires, so be careful for that.
Placing trips head-level does not matter as much when you are setting up to defend a site, but it is still something to think about. Right off the bat, let's talk about one-ways. If I have the opportunity, I probably use a one-way every 1 of 3 rounds on defense. It's really good to switch up your setups every round, as people catch on to them and try to play around them pretty quickly.
In the video below, I show probably the most common one-way that you will see on Split. This one-way is really good for punishing people trying to grab orb, or teams that are trying to rush B.While this one way is useful, it obviously has flaws. If people are standing at the back of garage, they can see your feet and some of your body. This is exactly why you should try to vary your setups. If the enemy team knows that you do this one-way every round, they will likely find a way to punish you for it.
One thing that I think is really underrated is cage lineups.
In the video below, I show 2 realllllllyyyyyyy strong lineups that you can easily do on Split. They create a ton of space for your team to work with, and the first cage in particular makes a really strong angle for you to clear close-left of ramps.
1) Jump on the box and line up with the vines that you see on the wall.
First Cage - For the first cage, put your crosshair at the corner of the building, where the 2 wooden parts meet.
Second Cage - For the second cage, aim at the tip of the umbrella that you can see on the balcony of the building.
As you can see, this cage gives you a really good angle to clear that left side of ramps. The only thing to really be wary about is people spamming you through the cage, but there is really not much you can do about that besides expecting it and counter-spraying or just not peaking at all. In the video below, I show a really basic cage that can help your team if you are attacking B and have site. The whole point of this cage is to possibly stop a push from the enemy team from CT. If they do push CT, you will hear them exit and enter the cage.
Realize that your cage is really just another smoke, but better. While it doesn't last as long as a Brimstone or Omen smoke would, it makes a noticeable sound when the enemy team enters or exits it. Cypher's ultimate ability is pretty straight-forward. It gives you a ton of information, and can help you make a lot of really good decisions as to if you should rotate with your team, go for a kill, and more. You could argue that there is really no bad time to use his ultimate, and I agree with that to an extent. Obviously it is probably not the best idea to be using his ult when you are in a 5-1 post plant scenario, but if it is a 3v4 and you get a kill to make it a 3v3, let it rip. Cypher ultimates in scenarios like that are really good.
All I can say is don't be afraid to use it. The information that it gets will likely help you and your team make a lot of positive decisions and it will help you get a lot of good kills. His ultimate is extremely situational, but if you feel like it is a good time to use it, it probably is.
A lot of times, Cypher is watching and playing off cam. Because of this, you should be glancing/looking at your map a lot. When I was first trying to get good at Valorant, I would watch a lot of different streamers play so I could learn from their gameplay. Now that I think of it this sounds really creepy, but if they had a webcam on I would watch their eyes. The biggest thing that I took away from doing this is that no matter what agent they were playing, they were constantly, looking at the map. Any good player will glance at their map literally any chance they get. Looking at the map gives you a ton of valuable information as to where the enemy team is, where they could be, where your teammates have died, where the enemies have died, and more.
Aim and gun control is obviously a part of getting good at the game, but awareness and gathering information in the back of your head that applies to your decision making in a positive way is something you really just can't teach, and it will help you improve tremendously. Like I said before, this applies to all characters. I briefly talked about this earlier, but varying your setups is really important. It's good to keep the enemy on their toes, and catching people off guard will get you a lot of kills. Believe it or not, the average human learns pretty quickly. If you do the same setup every round, I guarantee you that either your trips will instantly get shot, your cam will instantly get shot, and if you play the same angles, they will likely have an idea where you are as well. By gambling sites, I mean taking an educated guess as to what site you think the enemy team is going to attack. For example, If you just played B and you destroyed the enemy team, the chances of them going B again next round is pretty slim. Obviously it depends on if they were on an eco, but it's really worth it to take these types of gambles. If you guess correctly a lot and you play well, the enemy team will have a lot of trouble. If you are dedicated to getting better at Cypher, I highly suggest going into customs and practicing one-ways, setups, lineups, etc. After pistol round, the game really does not give you that much time to do your setups. Practicing doing them quickly will help you a lot in game, and it will help you remember them in game too! One thing that I think is really beneficial as well is learning the toss and bounce of the cage. Being able to safely throw a cage by bouncing it or tossing it over something is really good.
There are always new wires and good cam spots that are being found, so taking some time to mess around with Cypher's abilities will help you be successful.