Of all of Valorant’s fascinating heroes, the Sentinels are possibly the most under-appreciated. Perfect for more defensive players, we’ve taken a closer look at Cypher, Killjoy and Sage to determine who’s the best.
Valorant‘s Sentinel group are renowned for being silent but deadly. Focusing on a more defensive playstyle of laying traps and locking down areas, Sentinels are effectively the guardian angels of Future Earth.
Just because they hang back doesn’t make them easy to play though! Luring your enemies into a false sense of security is an art that requires mastery, time, and a lot of patience. If you’re more of the guns-blazing type, check out our Duelist comparison here, otherwise let’s get into it.
Best Sentinel Agents
Sage used to be an insta-lock in every Valorant game, however her powers of protection have seen a significant rejig over Valorant’s relatively short lifespan. While her Healing Orbs are still useful, they’re few and far between, and the fact that her Slow Orbs affects both teammates and enemies makes it hard to rush mid if one goes astray.
What shines is her Ultimate Ability. Despite the lengthy charge time, her Resurrection is the perfect tool to bring back a deceased ally, which can turn the tide when you’re Attacking. Bringing a Jett or a Raze back to life can cause absolute chaos, and it gives you someone to help you out if you’re left in a 1 v 5.
Sadly the once-dominant Sage finds herself at the tail end of the Sentinel pool on Defense. Sage’s utility comes from helping her team which, while she can do that on Defense, leaves her heavily limited.
It might not seem that way though considering her Barrier Orb. The infamous icy wall is great for blocking off certain routes into the Spike sites, however it’s mainly there to buy time and often Attackers will choose to go through it rather than around it.
- Read More: How to play as Sage
Additionally, if Sage is the last woman standing, her kit has no real power. Sure her Slow Orb can slow enemies, but it seems simply to delay the inevitable. Bringing back an ally with the res is always great, but this can be hard to execute on Defense when under heavy fire. Having to divert and pull an ally back from beyond the veil provides the Attackers easy access to the Spike while you’re distracted.
Maybe we’ll see Sage dominate in the future, but right now she’s in need of a buff to compete with the others. Her healing and kit look great on paper, however they just don’t quite translate into the current meta. As this shifts we may see the return of the Chinese healer, but until the Sage had best get used to third place on this list.
Killjoy’s adorable but evil Alarmbots are perfect for seeking out defensive opponents, letting allies know that something wicked this way comes. Additionally, when they explode they apply Vulnerable, making the Defensive enemy weaker and much easier to kill if Jett’s nearby and looking to pop some heads.
Killjoy’s Turrets are effective on Attack as well, as they can effectively lock down a Spike site and ensure that you and your allies know if anyone tries to breach the site. Her Ultimate, Lockdown has a similar effect. You can trap your enemies on C-Site while you decide to plant at A. By the time they get out, the game’s over.
The German Genius is certainly an Agent who shouldn’t be messed with on the Defense. Her Turrets are an easy way to lock enemies off of the site, and well-placed Alarmbots are going to make sure that you know if an Attacker is coming your way.
- Read More: How to play as Killjoy
The issue that Killjoy’s kit has is that, after Patch 1.11 her Turrets and Alarmbots will deactivate if she moves 40m away from them, so Killjoy either has to remain close to the site that she’s locked down otherwise her robotic arsenal is effectively useless and a waste of creds.
Despite being relatively new to Future Earth, German genius Killyjoy has had a rocky relationship with the balance team. From overpowered to underpowered, players are divided about the Agent’s state, but we think she’s got potential. Her Nanoswarm Grenades still pack a punch and her Lockdown can isolate enemies exactly where Killjoy wants them to be, but the changes to her Turrets and Alarmbots are substantial enough to knock her down a peg in this tier list.
Cypher’s Trapwire is perfect for causing the Defensive side chaos when you’re on the Attack, as one false step will reveal the Defender’s location and let the Attackers know where to avoid trying to plant the Spike, and more importantly, where there’s an easy kill.
A similar situation occurs with his Signature Ability, his Spycams. These give you visual information as to where the enemy player is, letting your team collapse upon them in an instant. This is great for picking off players, or for helping decide where the Spike may best be planted.
Just as on the Attacking side, Trapwires can make infiltrating any site a living nightmare, and his cameras are perfect for letting allies know exactly what the Attacking side are planning. His Cyber Cage is also great on Defense though. If the enemy somehow manages to sneak through, disorienting them with the cage gives your allies time to rotate or, if you’re feeling ambitious, for you to sneak in and execute the trapped Agents yourself.
- Read More: How to play as Cypher
Once you’ve decimated the enemy in the Cage, Cypher’s Neural Theft is the perfect follow up to let your allies know where the remaining players are so that they can collapse. All-in-all, Cypher is about gaining information to let your team thrive, and where best to do that than on Defense where you can sit back, relax and watch the chaos unfold knowing that it’s all because of the information you provided.
Cypher is the beating heart of all different styles of Valorant team compositions. The information he provides is invaluable, and it’s imperative that you communicate when playing this Agent. If used to his full potential the mysterious Moroccan is a force to be reckoned with, and that’s why he sits at the top of the Sentinel tier.
Of course, any skilled player can dominate on any Agent if they’re willing to put in the grind, but they can’t change the meta, they can only adapt.
As the popular Agents shift and further patches come through, we’ll make sure we update this piece with any changes. In the meantime though, jump on each of these Sentinels and give them a shot. You never know, maybe you’ll find out exactly who you like to play.