Viper sets herself apart from the other Valorant agents in a couple of ways. From her focus on area control and damage-over-time to her reliance on fuel to power her abilities, there’s a lot to wrap your head around if you want to master this particular agent. But our Valorant Viper guide is a great place to start, providing numerous practical tips for each of her four deadly abilities.
Valorant Viper guide
Viper abilities overview
Before we get stuck into the detailed tips for each of Viper’s abilities, let’s make sure we’re all clear on what these abilities actually do:
|Toxic Screen | Signature | 1 charge|
|Equip a gas emitter launcher. Fire to deploy a long line of gas emitters. Re-use the ability to create a tall wall of toxic gas at the cost of fuel. This ability can be re-used more than once.|
|Snake Bite | Purchasable | 2 charges | Costs 100c each|
|Equip a chemical launcher. Fire to launch a canister that shatters upon hitting the floor, creating a lingering chemical zone that damages and slows enemies.|
|Poison Cloud | Purchasable | 1 charge | Costs 200c | Can retrieve|
|Equip a gas emitter. Fire to throw the emitter that perpetually remains throughout the round. Re-use the ability to create a toxic gas cloud at the cost of fuel. This ability can be re-used more than once and can be picked up to be redeployed.|
|Viper’s Pit | Ultimate | 7 charges|
|Equip a chemical sprayer. Fire to spray a chemical cloud in all directions around Viper, creating a large cloud that reduces the vision range and maximum health of players inside of it.|
Now let’s discuss how we can use Viper’s abilities in interesting and powerful ways to influence the map and the match at large.
Viper tips – Toxic Screen
- The line of Toxic Screen can stretch a surprisingly long distance – almost the full diameter of your audio circle on the minimap.
- Just like Phoenix’s Blaze, Toxic Screen works via line-of-sight with the ground – which means you can fire it into the air and over buildings to make it stretch far further than pointing and shooting at a wall.
- Use the minimap to get the placement of your Toxic Screen just right. The line marker that appears on the minimap will adjust dynamically based on where you’re pointing it, so you can use this to see exactly how far it will stretch and where it will land.
- Bear in mind that it takes a moment after activation before the Toxic Screen actually rises from the canisters, so don’t immediately duck out of cover upon hitting the ability button. Wait until line of sight is fully blocked.
- The significant reach of Toxic Screen gives Viper a surprising amount of global map control. You can affect sites other than your own by firing over rooftops. Communicate with your team, and if they need support then don’t hesitate to give it from across the map.
- Toxic Screen is often used to cut a site or another area of the map in half, giving your team an element of safety while repositioning. But it’s also a very effective hunting tactic, because you can use it to make enemies think they’re safe (because from their point of view they can just sit and wait for someone to burst through the wall), then quickly lower the wall and headshot them. This works best with a high one-shot-potential weapon like the Operator or Guardian.
Viper tips – Snake Bite
- Viper may be immune to her toxic gas effects (i.e. all her other abilities), but she will still be damaged by her Snake Bite acid – just at a lower rate than enemies.
- The acid pool left behind by your Snake Bite canister lasts a total of 8 seconds, making it a fairly lengthy molotov-style ability, similar to Brimstone’s Incendiary. However, Viper’s Snake Bite is much more damaging, delivering 25 damage every second.
- You can fire your Snake Bites a startling distance, and it bounces off walls, allowing you to fire them around corners with ease. You therefore have plenty of flexibility with where and how you use this ability, so make the most of it. Don’t expose yourself without good cause.
- The damage inflicted by Snake Bite is regular damage-over-time, rather than the reducing-max-health effect of Viper’s other abilities. So any damage dealt by Snake Bite will not be replenished once you step out of the acid.
- An extremely strong use for Snake Bite is to combine it with your ultimate, Viper’s Pit. After enemies have been in the cloud long enough for their max health to be reduced to 1, the moment they touch a Snake Bite pool they’ll die.
Viper tips – Poison Cloud
- Most players know that you can retrieve your Poison Cloud canister if you’re close enough, and deploy it again elsewhere after a cooldown. What you may not know is that the Poison Cloud doesn’t have to be disabled for you to pick it up – although picking it up will of course disable the cloud.
- Just like Snake Bite and Toxic Screen, you can fire Poison Cloud a very long distance, and activate it from anywhere on the map. This makes it very useful for global map control as well as flushing enemies out from behind corners.
- You can double up a Poison Cloud with a Snake Bite for extra damage, and to provide even stronger incentive for enemies to wait rather than pushing through towards you.
- After enabling Poison Cloud, you must wait at least 2 seconds before disabling it again. And after disabling it, you must wait at least 5 seconds before enabling it again.
- Poison Cloud is one of the only abilities in Valorant that can be used to create so-called “one-way smokes” – smokes which allow you to see the enemy without them seeing you. Check out the below video from YouTube user “Valorant Joker” for some good one-way smoke placements.
Viper ultimate tips – Viper’s Pit
- As many already know, the most popular and powerful situation in which to use Viper’s Pit is just after planting the spike. A skillful Viper that takes advantage of her ult in this manner can take down an enemy retake push all by herself.
- The major downside to Viper’s Pit is not the fact that Viper must stay inside it; it’s how disruptive the ability is for allies as well as enemies. The prominence of this ability in her toolkit makes Viper by necessity more of a solo player than most other Valorant characters.
- Everyone inside the gas is Nearsighted, including Viper herself. However, Viper will see enemies much more clearly because the ability highlights them once they step inside her Nearsight range.
- It takes around 5 seconds after Viper’s Pit is activated before the gas starts to decay due to Viper not being inside it. This means you can use Viper’s Pit to fake or distract while you head to a different part of the map. It will take enemies a good 10 seconds at least before they realise you’re no longer in the gas.
- It’s a good idea to duck in and out of the gas of your ultimate. Go out to hide, and back in to replenish the gas and to kill enemies.
Some additional Viper tips
- You can only activate fuel-draining abilities (Toxic Screen and Poison Cloud) if you have more than 20 fuel. You can easily check this, because the first notch of the fuel gauge is at the 20 fuel mark.
- Viper is a fantastic defender. Much like Sage, she can hold off and disrupt an entire team push at times. No other agent can make the prospect of pushing towards a site so abhorrent.
- Viper’s ultimate is a real game-changer. It’s important enough that if you’re playing Viper, you should prioritise ultimate generation more than most other agents. Go for orbs whenever you can – use Poison Cloud for protection while picking up the orbs, then retrieve the canister once you’re finished.
With that, we’ll conclude this Valorant Viper guide. But we’ve got plenty more to offer for any Valorant player looking to increase their skill and knowledge! Click any of the links below to head over to a different Valorant guide.