Content Type: Gaming Guides
There are a lot of Killers in Dead by Daylight, and they all have their own powers and abilities. In this guide, we’ll explain how Killer powers and weapons work in order to give a clear, concise explanation of every Killer power in the game.
While each Killer has a unique weapon, they are all functionally identical. All Killers will do a basic attack when the attack button [Mouse 1 on PC, Right Trigger on console] is pressed. Here’s how basic attacks function:
- Tapping the basic attack button to basic attack. This attack is quick but short-ranged.
- Holding the basic attack button will cause you to lunge attack, temporarily increasing your movement speed for the duration of the lunge. Note that the lunge range is tied to your move speed pre-lunge, so you should try to build up a bit of momentum before lunging. Basically, don’t lunge if you’re standing still.
For both types of basic attacks, a successful hit has a 3-second cooldown, and a missed attack has a 1.5-second cooldown (hitting obstacles counts as a miss). Your movement speed is significantly reduced while your basic attack is on cooldown.
In addition to being able to basic attack, every Killer has their own unique Power they can use to help them catch and down Survivors. Some Killer powers can trap or injure Survivors, while others allow Killers to move undetected or traverse the map quickly. These powers are incredible diverse in nature and use, and as such, this guide does not examine in detail every single aspect of every power. Rather, the goal here is simply to give players enough of an understanding of each Killer’s power that you can play as or against them without being confused.
Killer Power Default Controls:
- Power – Mouse 2 on PC, L2/LT on Consoles
- Active Ability – Control on PC, LB/L1 on Consoles
- Attack – Mouse 1 on PC, RT/R2 on Consoles
- Interact – Space on PC, RB/R1 on Consoles
Some terms used in the guide may not be familiar to all players:
- Broken – Broken Survivors are unable to be healed.
- Dying – Dying Survivors are those who are downed. A survivor in this state is unable to do anything other than crawl on the ground and recover to 95%.
- Exposed – Exposed Survivors can be put in the Dying State with one Basic Attack, even when healthy.
- Incapacitated – Incapacitated Survivors are prevented from repairing gens, interacting with hooks, Survivors, or totems, and cannot use items.
- Oblivious – Oblivious Survivors cannot hear the Terror Radius heartbeat which indicates that the Killer is nearby.
- Power Gauge – The red-colored ring around a Killer’s power, generally indicating how close it is to fully charged/available.
- Undetectable – A status effect under which Killers do not have a Terror Radius and do not emit a Red Stain.
Now that we’ve gotten all that out of the way, let’s take a look at Powers!
Artist – Birds of Torment
The Artist starts with 3 charges of her power, Birds of Torment. She can hold the Power button to charge Birds of Torment — once it’s fully charged, the Attack button summons a dire crow. Continuing to hold the Power button allows multiple Dire Crows to be summoned this way, removing one charge from the power each time.
Once summoned, pressing the Ability button causes the Dire Crows to fly forward; if they impact a Survivor within the first 7.5 meters of their flight path, they will injure the Survivor. Dire Crows that don’t hit a Survivor will turn into a Swarm — Swarms fly through obstacles until they leave the map, and attach themselves to the first Survivors they hit, revealing their aura to the Artist. Swarms also reveal nearby Survivors they fly past via Killer Instinct. Survivors can remove Swarms with the Repel action, or by getting into a locker; beginning the Repel action prevents their aura from being revealed. Swarms will injure a Survivor already afflicted with a Swarm.
As the Artist, use your Dire Crow Swarms to check distant generators or other points of interest for Survivors and to catch Survivors on loops. This can be excellent for getting intel on distant Survivors, subverting the safety they might expect distance to bring.
Survivors playing against the Artist should be aware that near-misses will reveal your location, and should almost always immediately use the repel action (or get in a locker) if a Swarm hits you. The Artist’s power is most useful as a reconnaissance tool; that means that you should be trying to deny the information she is trying to acquire wherever possible.
Blight – Blighted Corruption
The Blight’s power stores up to 5 Tokens, and begins the trial fully charged. Pressing the Power button causes the Blight to Rush forward at high speed, limiting steering and preventing the Blight from attacking. Hitting an obstacle at less than a 45° angle allows the Blight to Chain Rush — pressing the Power button again will consume another token and initiate another Rush. During this Chain Rush (also called a Lethal Rush), the Blight can attack, and run into Pallets and Breakable Walls will destroy them.
After attacking during a Chain rush, not chaining another Rush, or running out of tokens, the Blight will slow down momentarily and begin recharging Tokens. Blighted Corruption becomes available again once all 5 Tokens are recharged. A notable add-on causes attacks made during the final charge of Lethal Rush to put Survivors into the Dying State.
As the Blight, use your Power to quickly traverse the map and patrol efficiently. You can also use your Power to catch and injure Survivors, and the boost of speed you get from hitting obstacles makes your powers especially useful in close quarters, where you can ambush Survivors around corners (in true jumpscare fashion).
Survivors playing against the Blight should take advantage of Blight’s inability to make sharp turns while rushing to avoid being hit by a Rush attack, and be aware of Blight’s ability to move around the map. You may also be able to use Blight’s inability to attack during the first Rush of a chain to your advantage, though this shouldn’t be relied upon: he will still end up closer to you after it!
Cannibal – Bubba’s Chainsaw
The Cannibal begins the trial with 3 charges. Pressing and holding the Power button will consume a charge and begin a Chainsaw Dash which lasts 2 seconds and will put any Survivor struck by the Chainsaw into the Dying State. Pressing the Power button again will consume another Charge and extend the Chainsaw Dash by another 2 seconds. The Cannibal is slowed moderately while performing a Chainsaw Dash. Charges regenerate when the Chainsaw is not in use.
Revving the Chainsaw fills the Tantrum meter (the red ring around the Power icon). If the meter fills completely, or if the Chainsaw strikes an obstacle, the Cannibal will throw a Tantrum, drastically reducing his movement speed while putting any nearby Survivors into the Dying State. Hitting a Pallet or Breakable Wall with a Chainsaw dash will destroy it and end the dash.
As the Cannibal, using your Power is straightforward: it allows you to quickly down Survivors. Since it immediately puts Survivors into a Dying state, it is most effective to use this power against Survivors who aren’t already injured.
Survivors playing against the Cannibal should utilize Window Vaults whenever possible, as the Cannibal cannot vault windows while using his Chainsaw. Survivors should also be very careful about a Cannibal that is camping the Hook, as he can quickly down both the unhooker and the unhookee with his power.
Cenobite – Summons of Pain
Pressing the Power button creates a gateway, and releasing the button opens it. Once a gateway is opened, pressing the Attack button will summon a chain that the Cenobite can launch towards a Survivor, attaching it to them. Survivors bound by chains cannot sprint or interact with objects/use items, and can’t escape through an Exit Gate. Additional chains further slow the Survivor’s movement speed (up to a maximum of 3). Chains can be broken by Survivors via the Action button or by putting any object (Including the Killer or another Survivor) in between the Survivor and the Chain.
Trials with the Cenobite contain a puzzle box called “the Lament Configuration.” The Aura of the box is shown to all Survivors, and Survivors can pick up and use the box to solve it, which resets the “Chain Hunt meter” around their portraits. If the box is left alone until the meter around the Survivors’ portraits fills, a Chain Hunt begins, and all Survivors are targeted by Chains. A Survivor carrying the box cannot hear the Terror Radius, and chains will be summoned to attack the Survivor. Additionally, the Cenobite can see the location of the Survivor with the box and can teleport to their location.
If the Cenobite finds and picks up the Lament Configuration, this will also cause a Chain Hunt to begin, wherein all Survivors will be bound by chains and scream, revealing their location. After either the Cenobite or a Survivor has used the box, it will spawn in a new location. Notable add-ons allow Posessed chains to injure Survivors, or hide the Lament Configuration from Survivors.
As the Cenobite, use your ability to teleport to the Lament Configuration to stop Survivors from completing it — try to force them to drop it (by downing them) and pick it up yourself to begin a Chain Hunt.
Survivors playing against the Cenobite should pay attention to the chain meter around their portrait — once it’s more than halfway filled, someone needs to go and try and solve the Lament Configuration. Once you pick it up, you’ll need to dodge the chain that appears and then immediately start solving it. If you try to start solving it before dodging one, a chain will probably interrupt you, and if you don’t begin immediately solving it after this, then the Cenobite’s teleport will put him dangerously close to you before you can finish it.
Clown – Afterpiece Tonic
Pressing the Active Ability button switches between the Clown’s two abilities: the Afterpiece Tonic and the Afterpiece Antidote. Tapping the Power button will throw the currently selected Afterpiece bottle a short distance while holding the Power button will allow it to be thrown further and faster. Pressing and holding the Active Ability button will refill your bottles.
The Afterpiece Tonic releases a purple gas cloud wherever it impacts, where it will remain for 10 seconds. The gas slows Survivors, prevents fast vaults, and causes them to cough. It also obscures the Survivors’ vision drastically. This impaired vision lasts for 4 seconds after leaving the cloud, while the movement impairment and coughing lasts only 2 seconds.
The Afterpiece Antidote releases a yellow cloud that also lasts for 10 seconds. The Antidote gas removes the effects of the Tonic cloud, and grants a 5-second, 10% movement speed buff for any player — Killer or Survivor — that moves into the gas. The Antidote gas cloud can be removed by a Tonic gas cloud.
Notable add-ons Expose Survivors that enter a Tonic gas cloud, reveal Survivors’ auras when affected by a gas cloud, or reveal the aura of nearby players to any player Invigorated by the Antidote.
As the Clown, use your Afterpiece Tonic to slow Survivors down, especially at loops. You can frequently catch Survivors at otherwise strong Pallets if they run through the gas cloud, as they won’t be able to fast vault. Use your Afterpiece Antidote to move quickly around the map.
Survivors playing against the Clown should anticipate dealing with the gas cloud, and either leave the loop or take your inability to fast vault into account. While it’s relatively easy for the Clown to get the first hit on you, he lacks stealth or movement abilities, so take advantage of the speed boost from him injuring you to make as much distance as possible.
Deathslinger – The Redeemer
Pressing and holding the Power button will cause the Deathslinger to aim down the sights of his spear-rifle, The Redeemer. While aiming down sights, pressing the Attack button will fire the speargun. If its spear strikes a Survivor, they will be impaled and the Deathslinger can hold the Power button to reel the Survivor towards them. An impaled Survivor can move left and right slightly and attempt to put an obstacle between themselves and the Deathslinger. If they manage to do this, then they will be Injured and receive the Deep Would condition, but will also stun the Deathslinger.
If the Deathslinger does a Basic Attack which fails to hit the Survivor, the chain will break without stunning The Deathslinger, and without applying a Deep Wound to the impaled Survivor. If the Deathslinger’s Basic Attack hits the impaled Survivor, they will be injured and a Deep Wound will be applied to them.
The Redeemer must be reloaded after each shot, which can be done by using the Active Ability button. Notable add-ons Expose Survivors spread out at long range or grant the Deathslinger Undetectable whenever he spears a Survivor.
As the Deathslinger, make sure you only impale Survivors that you will be able to reel in — if you shoot the Redeemer at a Survivor on the other side of a long obstacle, you may not be able to reel them to you before your chain breaks, stunning you and giving them a chance to escape. You don’t always need to fire your rifle; sometimes simply pretending to take aim will cause Survivors to juke rather than run away, allowing you to gain ground.
Survivors playing against the Deathslinger should try to pay attention to nearby obstacles that can intercept the spear, and try to move erratically as the Deathslinger takes aim to try to cause the Redeemer to miss. You can help fellow Survivors escape the chain by standing between the Deathslinger and the impaled Survivor — he can Basic Attack the unimpaled survivor, but this will prevent him from applying a Deep Wound to anyone.
Demogorgon – Of the Abyss
Pressing and holding the Power button will begin charging Of the Abyss. When Of the Abyss is fully charged, the auras of any Survivor within 4 meters of any active portal will be revealed. Once Of the Abyss is at least 65% charged, the Demogorgon can press the Attack button to perform a quick dash attack forwards, breaking any walls or Pallets it impacts during the dash, and injuring any Survivor it hits.
The Demogorgon can create an inactive portal with the Active Ability button. Inactive portals are invisible and do not reveal Survivors via Of the Abyss. The Demogorgon can stand on a portal and look towards another portal (active or not) and press the Active Ability button to travel rapidly to the highlighted portal. The Demogorgon is Undetectable (no Terror Radius and no Red Stain) for 3 seconds after exiting a portal. Once a portal has been used, it becomes active, and can be sealed by Survivors (though Survivors standing on a portal will not hear the Killer’s Terror Radius).
Notable add-ons increase the length the Demogorgon is Undetectable after exiting a portal, or temporarily reveal the aura of Survivors after Demogorgon exits a portal.
As the Demogorgon, place portals behind obstacles and in unexpected places near generators to surprise Survivors — take advantage of your temporary lack of a Terror Radius to close the gap on Survivors after exiting a portal. Charge your power while chasing a Survivor on a Pallet loop so you can quickly destroy a dropped Pallet (or catch a greedy Survivor).
Survivors playing against the Demogorgon should seal portals whenever they see them and remember to keep an eye out for the Demogorgon coming from unexpected angles. The Demogorgon’s shred attack can be avoided by moving at a right angle to his line of attack.
Doctor – Carter’s Spark
Pressing and holding the Power button performs a Shock Therapy Attack in an arc in front of the Doctor. Any Survivor struck by Shock Therapy screams, gains increased Madness (see below), has any action they’re performing interrupted, and is prevented from performing any actions for 2.5 seconds (including dropping Pallets and Vaulting Windows).
Pressing and holding the Active Ability button performs a Static Blast, causing all Survivors within the Doctor’s Terror Radius to scream (revealing their location) and gain increased Madness. This also interrupts any action (though it doesn’t prevent future actions, unlike Shock Therapy). This ability has a long cooldown (60 seconds).
Madness – Any Survivor hit by the Doctor’s weapon or his Power gain Madness; each tier of Madness has increasingly disruptive effects, which can be modified by the Doctor’s add-ons. Some effects of Madness include Skill Checks moving counterclockwise, or seeing hallucinatory Doctors. At Madness Tier 3, Survivors will be unable to perform any actions and must use the Action button to snap out of it. Until hitting Tier 3, there is no way to reduce or remove Madness. Notable add-ons cause hallucinatory pallets to appear when Survivors are afflicted by Madness, or allows the Doctor to see Survivor’s hallucinations.
As the Doctor, use your Static Blast when near generators you suspect Survivors are working on, or to find a Survivor you lost but know is in the area. Your Shock Therapy attack can prevent Survivors from vaulting and dropping pallets, so use it on loops to catch them.
Survivors playing against the Doctor should focus on making distance from the Doctor rather than hiding if he hasn’t used his Static Blast recently, to remain outside of its Area of Effect. Know that the Doctor is slowed when charging his Shock Therapy — if he begins to use it while you’re looping, simply continue around the loop rather than trying to and failing to drop the Pallet.
Dredge – Reign of Darkness
Reign of Darkness starts the trial with 3 tokens. Pressing and holding the Power button activates The Gloaming. When The Gloaming is activated, the Dredge leaves a Remnant behind, and moves more slowly. By aiming at a Locker and pressing the Ability Button, the Dredge can teleport to the Locker, consuming a token. Dredge can then exit the Locker, or spend another token to teleport to a different Locker. By pressing the Attack button, the Dredge can return to the Remnant. If the Dredge teleports to a Locker with a Survivor inside, it will automatically grab and pick up that Survivor.
Survivors can touch the Remnant to destroy it. They can interact with Lockers (once per trial) to place a lock on them, which will slow the Dredge down if it attempts to exit that locker. If the Dredge is inside a Locker when a Survivor tries to lock it, the Dredge will automatically grab that Survivor. A lock will break if the Dredge exits a locked Locker, and the Dredge can also Basic Attack these locks to break them.
Nightfall – When a healthy Survivor is injured, a Survivor is hooked, or The Dredge teleports, the Nightfall Meter builds. Once the meter is full, Nightfall begins automatically, and lasts for 60 seconds. During Nightfall, the Dredge’s teleportation is faster, and has a shorter cooldown. The Dredge also gains Undetectable during Nightfall. Survivors can destroy the Remnant to shorten the duration of Nightfall.
As the Dredge, use your teleportation combined with the Darkness Revealed perk to quickly find and start chases with Survivors. During Nightfall, take advantage of the fact that you have no Terror Radius to sneak up on Survivors before attacking them.
Survivors playing against the Dredge should lock Lockers near where they want to do generators, avoid being in Lockers whenever possible, and always destroy the Remnant when they see it in the Trial.
Executioner – Rites of Judgement
Holding the Power button will activate Rites of Judgement. Moving in any direction with Rites of Judgement active will create a Trail of Torment on the ground; Survivors that walk or run over the trail will become afflicted with Torment (see below) and their location will be revealed to the Executioner. The Executioner cannot use his weapon while Rites of Judgement is active. Pressing the Attack button while Rites of Judgement is active will instead perform a ranged attack (Punishment of the Damned) that damages any Survivors in its path
Survivors afflicted with Torment can be placed in a Cage of Atonement when in the Dying State. This counts as being hooked, and is functionally identical. Being rescued from or rescuing another Survivor from a Cage of Atonement will remove Torment. A Survivor afflicted with Torment who has reached the second Hook State can be killed with Final Judgement (activated with the Active Ability button).
As the Executioner, use your Trail of Torment to notify you when Survivors enter an area you’re trying to protect by placing it in a chokepoint. It can also be placed around a hooked Survivor to attempt to apply Torment to anyone who comes to rescue them. Your ranged attack is a great way to injure Survivors on a loop without having to catch them.
Survivors playing against the Executioner should know that crouching over a Trail of Torment will hide their presence and not apply Torment. Changing directions the moment the Executioner uses his ranged attack is the best way to dodge it.
Ghost Face – Night Shroud
Pressing the Power button when the Power gauge is fully charged will activate Night Shroud, granting Ghost Face the Undetectable status effect. Holding the Power button while Night Shroud is active will Stalk survivors — Survivors Ghost Face is looking at will accumulate Stalk points until they are Marked, at which point they will be Exposed for 45 seconds.
Holding the Power button while Nightshroud is active and Ghost Face is behind cover will cause him to lean out from the cover, stalking at twice the normal rate. Ghost Face can press the Active Ability button to crouch, pressing it again will uncrouch. Attacking will deactivate Night Shroud. Survivors can deactivate Night Shroud (putting it on cooldown) by Exposing Ghost Face. This is done by putting Ghost Face in the center of the Survivor’s screen for 1.5 seconds.
As Ghost Face, approach generators with Night Shroud activated, so Survivors don’t realize you’re approaching. If there are strong loops near the Survivors you are Stalking, consider leaving them near-Stalked and fully Expose them only when they are in a less safe area.
Survivors playing against Ghost Face should try to expose him whenever possible, and position themselves on gens in such a way that they can see Ghost Face’s approach.
Hag – Blackened Catalyst
Pressing the Power button places a Phantasm Trap on the ground. If a Survivor walks or runs near a Phantasm Trap, it will trigger, and a Mud Phantasm will spawn. When a Mud Phantasm spawns, it forces the Survivor camera towards the Mud Phantasm, emits a small Terror Radius, and “looks” at the Survivor until it disappears after a few seconds.
The Hag can press the Active Ability button to teleport to a triggered Phantasm Trap within 40 meters, taking the place of the Mud Phantasm. Up to 10 traps can be placed — new traps will replace the oldest one. Survivors can crouch to avoid triggering the trap, and can destroy them by shining a flashlight onto them. Noteable addons disable the spawning of the Mud Phantasm (but still allow teleporting to triggered traps), grant Mud Phantasms collision, or increase Hag’s movement speed while disabling her ability to teleport to traps.
As the Hag, place your traps in grass, chokepoints, or corners where Survivors either can’t see them or can’t avoid them. Placing traps near hooked Survivors is mean, but effective.
Survivors playing against Hag should crouch-walk anywhere they suspect a trap, or at obvious spots like choke-points or near hooked Survivors. If you know the Hag is chasing another Survivor, take advantage of it to set off nearby traps — you’ll either draw the Hag’s attention away from the other Survivor, or waste her traps.
Hillbilly – Chainsaw
Press and holding the Power button will begin a Chainsaw Sprint, moving incredibly fast and putting any Survivor struck by the Hillbilly into the Dying State. It is possible to rev the Chainsaw without sprinting, but doing so increases the Overheat meter — once this meter is full, the Chainsaw cannot be used until the meter fully depletes. The Hillbilly cannot make sharp turns while Chainsaw Sprinting, and is slowed significantly for 3 seconds after a Chainsaw Sprint. The Chainsaw is incredibly loud and can be heard from across the map.
As the Hillbilly, use your speed to make sure generators don’t get done. Your power can be a mobility tool as well as a weapon. Learning to control your Chainsaw Sprint is key, as you can down Survivors with one hit with your power but it can be difficult to aim properly.
Survivors playing against Hillbilly should try to put obstacles between themselves and the Hillbilly when being chased by him, and learn to hide if you hear the Chainsaw coming your way.
Huntress – Hunting Hatchets
Press and hold the Power button to wind up a Hatchet throw. Releasing the button will throw the Hatchet. The longer the Huntress holds the Power button, the faster, straighter, and further the hatchet will fly. A fully charged Hunting Hatchet plays an audio cue for the Killer and nearby Survivors. Pressing the attack button will cancel a charging Hatchet throw.
The Huntress starts the trial with 5 Hatchets by default, and can refill her Hatchets at a locker. Noteable addons grant the Huntress Undetectable (no Terror Radius, no Red Stain) after refilling her hatchets, exhaust Survivors struck with a hatchet, or allows hatchets to down Survivors in one hit.
As the Huntress, use your Hatchets to damage Survivors without having to catch them, or to hit them over low loops. Forcing Survivors towards a Window vault or Pallet drop is a good way to guarantee a hatchet hit.
Survivors playing against Huntress should try to put obstacles between themselves and the Huntress when being chased by her, and consider running through Pallets/past windows to avoid stopping and making themselves an easy target for a hatchet.
Legion – Feral Frenzy
When Feral Frenzy is fully charged, pressing the Power button will trigger a Feral Frenzy. Feral Frenzy grants increased movement speed, and the ability to quickly vault windows and pallets, but prevents the Legion from seeing Scratch Marks and Pools of Blood. Pressing the Attack button while Feral Frenzy is active performs a Feral Slash, which injures survivors and inflicts the Deep Wound status effect.
A successful Feral Slash recharges Feral Frenzy and reveals the location of any Survivor within Legion’s Terror Radius that doesn’t have a Deep Wound. Missing a Feral Slash or using it on a Survivor that already has a Deep Wound ends Feral Frenzy. Hitting a Survivor with a Basic attack while Feral Frenzy is not active depletes the charge of Legion’s power by half of max. Notable addons cause Pallets to break when Legion vaults them and make Legion’s Terror Radius map-wide.
As the Legion, wait to activate your power until you’ve found a Survivor (and ideally, more than one). Try to injure all the Survivors with Feral Slash, then work on downing them.
Survivors playing against Legion should run away from the Terror Radius and avoid dropping Pallets while Legion’s power is active (you can tell by the Killer’s loud breathing) and they aren’t injured. Don’t forget Legion can’t down you while their power is active and you’re injured.
Nemesis – T-Virus
Pressing and holding the Power button charges a Tentacle Strike — once charged, pressing the Attack button will attack with a Tentacle Strike. Hitting a Survivor with a Tentacle Strike Contaminates them and increases Nemesis’ Mutation Rate, while hitting an already Contaminated Survivor will injure them and increase Nemesis’ Mutation Rate.
When T-Virus reaches Mutation Rate 2, Tentacle Strike can destroy Breakable Walls and Pallets. Mutation Rate 3 increases the Tentacle’s range as well as Nemeis’ movement speed while charging the Tentacle Strike. Survivors are briefly slowed when they become Contaminated. Supply Chests can be found around the map that contain Vaccines — using one removes Contamination but alerts the Killer to the Survivor’s location.
Trials with the Nemesis will also contain two zombies that can interact with Survivors the same way the Tentacle Strike does: the first hit Contaminates, while Contaminated Survivors are instead injured. Zombies can be blinded with Flashlights or destroyed with Pallets. The Nemesis can destroy Zombies with Tentacle Strike to increase T-Virus’ Mutation Rate. Zombies destroyed in either fashion will respawn. Notable addons Expose survivors who use a Vaccine, reveal the location of a Survivor who unlocks a Supply Chest for 12 seconds, or increase Zombie Move Speed when a generator is completed.
As the Nemesis, use your Tentacle Strike to hit Survivors on loops, and pay attention to Zombie movements to track Survivors.
Survivors playing against Nemesis should play aggressively when not contaminated, and use the speed boost from getting hit with the Tentacle to make distance. Survivors can lead Zombies away from generators or key areas, then break line of sight to lose the Zombie’s attention.
Nightmare – Dream Demon
Pressing and holding the Power button places a Dream Snare on the ground — Sleeping Survivors that touch the Dream Snare are slowed until they leave the trap, and for a few moments after. Pressing and holding the Active Ability button will teleport the Nightmare to a highlighted generator (the button can be released to cancel the teleport).
The Nightmare is invisible to awake Survivors beyond 32 meters, and can only be seen intermittently from 16 to 32 meters. Sleeping Survivors see the Nightmare normally, but hear only a non-directional Lullaby rather than the Terror Radius. Survivors fall asleep after 60 seconds, or when struck by the Nightmare’s Basic attack.
Survivors can wake each other up, or can interact with the highlighted Alarm Clock (using the Alarm clock will grant the Survivor 30 seconds in which they won’t begin falling asleep, and can’t be put asleep by The Nightmare’s attacks). Notable addons replace Dream Snares with Dream Pallets (which can be dropped but don’t stun the Killer and break instantly), cause all Generators to spew blood when the Nightmare teleports, or starts the Trial with all Survivors asleep.
As The Nightmare, use your teleportation to defend generators across the map and use your Dream Snares on loops to catch Survivors. You can surprise Survivors you’re chasing by teleporting to a generator in their path.
Survivors playing against The Nightmare should wake each other up whenever possible, and use alarm clocks when convenient as well. There’s a delay between the Nightmare teleporting to a generator and him being able to see anything, so sometimes you can hide nearby rather than running away.
Nurse – Spencer’s Last Breath
Spencer’s Last Breath starts with 2 charges. Pressing and holding the Power button expends a charge and charges up a Blink; the longer the Power button is held, the longer the Blink, to a maximum of 20 meters. After a blink, there is a short window where the Nurse can press the Power button again to Chain Blink, expending the final charge and Blinking again when the Power button is released.
Nurse’s blink can go through walls and other obstacles, and the Nurse can attack during the Chain Blink window, or after her final blink. After the Chain Blink window closes, or the final blink, the Nurse is briefly fatigued (she is slowed and looks down, unable to attack). Notable addons give Nurse an additional Blink charge, or remove a Blink charge in exchange for increased movement speed.
As the Nurse, Blink to quickly move around the map, and to surprise Survivors — a generator you suspect is being worked on is a great target to blink onto. You can also invalidate many loops with your power.
Survivors playing against Nurse should take advantage of her immobility when not blinking to get to obstacles and attempt to break line-of-sight. When Nurse is likely to blink at you (you can see/hear her charging it up) move erratically to avoid her blinking on top of you. You can also use a flashlight on the Nurse while she uses her Power to prevent her from blinking or even stun her.
Mastermind – Virulent Bound
The Mastermind starts the trial with 2 Tokens. Pressing and holding the Power button charges a Bound Attack. Once charged, press the Attack button to Bound. Hitting a survivor with this Attack will briefly seize them and infect them with the Uroboros. Then, the Mastermind will continue Bounding forward until he either collides with a surface, injuring the Survivor, or collides with nothing and flings the survivor forward, who will become Injured if they collide with something. If the Mastermind would hit a dropped Pallet or Window while Bounding, he will vault over it.
After being hit by the Virulent Bound, a Survivor will be infected by the Uroboros. Once this infection becomes critical after a short time, the Survivor suffers the Hindered status effect (moving slower). If the Mastermind hits a Survivor who is Critically Infected with Uroboros, he will automatically carry them. The only way Survivors can remove Uroboros is by using Medicinal Sprays that can be found throughout the level, each having two uses.
As the Mastermind, you should focus on catching Survivors in open places or narrow passageways, since this will make it harder for Survivors to avoid your Virulent Bound. You should also do whatever possible to make sure Survivors stay infected with Uroboros, since this will allow you to easily 1-hit-carry them. This can make him especially effective late-game. Since the Mastermind has a huge Terror Radius, taking stealth perks is usually wise.
Survivors playing against Mastermind should make sure they locate the Medicinal Sprays that will spawn around the map, and make use of them. The Mastermind is most effective if the Survivors let his Uroboros infection go unchecked, especially late-game. Because of the Mastermind’s abilities to vault faster if a Survivor vaults near him, and to see the auras of Survivors near him while he is carrying a Survivor, they should not rely too heavily on vaulting as a means to escape and should be especially cautious when unhooking other Survivors.
Oni – Yamaoka’s Wrath
Injured Survivors in the trial will drop Blood Orbs, which the Oni can absorb by pressing and holding the Power button, filling his Power gauge. When the Power gauge is full, pressing and holding the Active Ability button will activate Blood Fury.
Bloody Fury unlocks two new abilities: Pressing and holding the Power Button while Blood Fury is active performs a Demon Dash, in which the Oni rushes forward, limiting his steering but dramatically increasing his movement speed. Pressing and holding the Attack button while Blood Fury is active performs a Demon Strike, a powerful lunge attack that puts any Survivors it hits into the Dying State (downed).
Picking up a downed Survivor cancels Blood Fury (the Power gauge level is maintained). Notable addons allow Survivors to see and absorb Blood Orbs (revealing themselves to Oni in the process), or make missed Demon Strikes cause nearby Survivors to scream and reveal their location.
As the Oni, focus on injuring a Survivor quickly to absorb their blood and build up your Power gauge. Use Blood Fury to move quickly around the map, downing Survivors with Demon Strike.
Survivors playing against Oni should know that Oni roars when he activates his Power — this is a great time to simply hide until it wears off (after about 40 seconds by default). While Demon Dashing and Demon Striking, the Oni has a limited ability to turn, so taking sharp angles can help you avoid these powers.
Onryō – Deluge of Fear
The Onryō starts the Trial Unmanifested — in this state, she is Undetectable and invisible, but becomes intermittently visible while within 24 meters of Survivors. In this state, the Onryō cannot attack Survivors. By pressing and holding the Power button, the Onryō will Manifest, allowing her to attack and interact with Survivors. Pressing and holding the Power button again will cause the Onryō to become Unmanifested once again.
The Onryō can also Manifest by Projecting herself into a TV. TVs are spawned throughout a Trial with the Onryō, and by pressing the Ability button while looking at a powered TV, the Onryō can teleport to and then Manifest while crawling out of the TV. When this occurs, all Survivors within 16 meters of the TV gain Condemned progress.
Survivors can interact with any TV to remove its VHS Tape — this will temporarily turn off that TV. This tape can then be used on other TVs to temporarily turn them off, however doing so will add progress to that Survivor’s Condemned meter, and holding a tape will slowly add Condemned progress as well. When the tape is first retrieved, the Survivor picking it up will receive a Loud Noise Notification, and be shown an Aura of a specific TV — inserting the tape into that specific TV will remove some of their Condemned progress.
Condemned/Inexorable Stare – When a Survivor’s Condemned meter is full, The Onryō can kill that Survivor while they are in the Dying State by activating Inexorable Stare.
As the Onryō, use your power to quickly move around the map and apply pressure to Survivors. Try to use Perks that reveal Survivor locations, so that you can build Condemned progress while teleporting. Take advantage of your Undecetable status when not teleporting, and try to surprise Survivors.
Survivors playing against Onryō should know that the Onryō cannot insta-down them without the help of perks, and so running in a straight line away from her is very effective, as is any standard loop. The Condemned meter is hidden, and while it’s rare for the Onryō to actually build the meter to full, Survivors will want to spread her message with the VHS Tape if they suspect their meter is nearly full.
Pig – Jigsaw’s Baptism
The Pig can press the Active Ability button to crouch and uncrouch. While crouched, the Pig is Undetectable but moves fairly slowly. The Pig can press the Attack button while crouched to Ambush Dash, a lunging attack with increased speed and range.
The Pig starts the trial with 4 Reverse Bear Traps. The Pig can press the Active Ability button while standing on top of a Dying (downed) Survivor to place an Inactive Reverse Bear Trap on the Survivor. Survivors can escape the trial while wearing an Inactive Trap.
When a generator is completed, all Inactive Reverse Bear Traps activate, with a countdown timer appearing around the trapped Survivor’s portrait. Once the timer expires, the Survivor is killed. Reverse Bear Traps can be removed at Jigsaw Boxes found throughout the trial (their white aura is visible to trapped Survivors) can be used to remove the trap, though only one of the Boxes will remove the Bear Trap.
Survivors with active traps on them will be killed if they attempt to escape through an Exit Gate, though they can still leave safely through the hatch. Notable addons cause various afflictions to trapped Survivors, notify the Pig when Survivors use Jigsaw Boxes, or reveal nearby Survivors’ auras while the Pig is crouched.
As the Pig, take advantage of your ability to be Undetectable to sneak up on Survivors. Once you’ve placed Reverse Bear Traps on a few Survivors, consider patrolling the Jigsaw boxes or otherwise trying to stalk trapped Survivors.
Survivors playing against Pig should try and find generators with clear lines of sight around them to avoid being snuck up on. If you get a trap put on you, prioritize removing it (unless there are no generators remaining, in which case it won’t activate).
Plague – Vile Purge
Pressing and holding the Power button charges Vile Purge, releasing it causes the Plague to emit a stream of infectious bile. Survivors struck with the bile becoming Infected (if already infected, Survivors have their Sickness Meter filled further), while any environmental objects (Pallets, generators, windows) will become infectious for 35 seconds — Survivors who interact with these objects will become infected.
An infected Survivor’s Sickness Meter slowly fills; once it is full the Survivor becomes Injured and suffers from the Broken status effect. Sick Survivors will randomly vomit, infecting nearby objects and other Survivors. An infected or sick Survivor can use a Pool of Devotion (infected/sick Survivors can see their white auras throughout the trial) to cleanse themselves and be healed. Pools of Devotion that Survivors have used to cleanse themselves become Corrupted — the Plague can consume the Corruption to transform her power into Corrupt Purge, which injures Survivors instead of infecting them.
As the Plague, use your Power on Survivors if they are leading you around a Loop, and make sure to vomit on any generators you are trying to defend. You can also use your power on hooked Surivors, so that whoever unhooks them will become infected. Try to infect as many Survivors as possible, and make sure to consume any Corrupted Pools of Devotion ASAP.
Survivors playing against Plague should resist using the Pools of Devotion — a Plague without Corrupt Purge isn’t very strong, and it’s frequently better to simply play Broken than to give her access to a powerful ability. She has no ability to catch Survivors on loops, so find strong Pallets or Windows to take advantage of this fact.
Shape – Evil Within
Evil Within starts in Tier I. Pressing the Power button to Stalk any Survivor visible to the Shape within 40 meters, powering up Evil Within. As Evil Within gains power, various effects occur:
- Tier 1 – Undetectable, reduced movement speed, reduced lunge attack range.
- Tier 2 – Reduced (16m) Terror Radius, normal movement speed, normal lunge range, increased vault speed
- Tier 3 – All Survivors are Exposed for 60 seconds, normal Terror Radius, normal movement speed, increased lunge attack range, further increased vault speed. Tier III ends after 60 seconds by default, and the Shape returns to zero progress Tier 2.
The Shape is slow and has a weak lunge at Tier 1, but has no Terror Radius or Red Stain, so he can sneak up on Survivors fairly easily. Tier 2 basically makes him a normal killer. Once the Shape hits Tier 3, he becomes incredibly deadly: he is granted a longer lunge range, faster vault speed, and is able to down Survivors with one attack. When the Shape hits Tier 2, his theme music plays, and Survivors can tell when he hits Tier 3 because they will become Exposed.
Stalk rate is affected by distance — the further away the Shape is from the Survivor he’s stalking, the slower Evil Within powers up. Each Survivor has a limited amount of time that they can be stalked for. As Survivors are stalked, the color of their outline while being stalked will change from white to red — a fully red Survivor will no longer grant Stalk points. Notable addons prevent the Shape from reaching Tier 2 but allow him to see nearby Survivors’ auras while Stalking, dramatically increase Tier 3’s duration (or make it infinite), or even allow the Shape to kill healthy Survivors while in Tier 3.
As the Shape, start the game by approaching Generators from weird angles and Stalk to Tier 2 without Survivors seeing you. It’s sometimes better to get Stalk points than attempting to catch a Survivor, especially if they’re close to a Pallet or Window. It’s also a good idea to 99% your Power (just before Tier 3) sometimes; you can then wait until you’ve found multiple Survivors somewhere it will be easy to catch them, then hit Tier 3 and down them.
Survivors playing against the Shape should try to get on generators in a way that minimizes exposure to Stalking, and prioritize breaking line of sight when being chased. Avoid loops The Shape can see over, as he’ll just Stalk you instead of trying to catch you. When The Shape hits Tier 3, the best thing to do is hide until it’s over. If The Shape has his hand open during Tier 3, he is using the Tombstone addon, and can kill you if he catches you. Not getting caught or getting in a locker is the only way to prevent this.
Spirit – Yamaoka’s Haunting
Pressing and holding the Power button will charge and then initiate a Phase-Walk, allowing the Spirit to enter the Ethereal Plane, leaving a husk behind. While the Power button is held, or until the Power gauge is depleted, The Spirit will remain in the Ethereal Plane, moving at increased speed but unable to see Survivors — though Scratch Marks remain visible, and Survivors breathing/grunts of pain are audible. Once The Spirit returns to the material realm, she briefly maintains her speed boost, and her husk is destroyed. Yamaoka’s Haunting must recharge to full before it can be used again.
The husk The Spirit leaves behind when Phase-Walking emits a Terror Radius, and is indiscernible from the real Spirit. Survivors outside the husk’s Terror Radius will hear a Phase-Walking audio cue, while Survivors inside it will not. The husk can be destroyed by shining a Flashlight on it, although this doesn’t affect The Spirit in any other way. Noteable addons prevent The Spirit from seeing Scratch Marks while Phase-Walking but reveals Survivors near the Husk, allow the Spirit to return to the husk while Phase Walking, and prevent The Spirit from Seeing Scratch marks while Phase-Walking but increases her Phase-Walk movement speed by 40%.
As The Spirit, you can use your Power to make any loop a 50/50 — Phase-Walk around the loop and exit the Ethereal Plane near the Pallet, attacking as soon as you do so. You can also use your Power to catch up to Survivors, or to surprise them while they’re working on a generator. Note that although Survivors are invisible while you’re in the Ethereal Plane, you can also see corn or grass move when Survivors walk through it.
Survivors playing against The Spirit should stop running when the Spirit begins to use her power (she’ll appear to stop moving) and instead walk in a weird direction, preferably to somewhere that might block her line of sight. Once injured, don’t bother using this strategy unless you’re running Iron Will, since your grunts of pain will give you away. If you hear the whooshing sound that indicates she’s phasing, and you think she’s coming for your generator, try to hide — but don’t run, since she’ll be able to follow your Scratch Marks.
Trapper – Bear Trap
The Trapper starts the Trial carrying 2 bear traps, and an additional 6 will spawn throughout the trial. Pressing and holding the Power button will place and arm a Bear Trap.
Pressing and holding the power button in front of a disarmed Bear Trap will arm it. Survivors who walk over a Bear Trap will be immobilized, and become injured if they were healthy. Survivors can attempt to free themselves, and other Survivors can free them.
Survivors can interact with traps to disarm them — Trapper will get a loud noise notification when this occurs. The Trapper can reset or pick up traps from the ground, but can only carry 2 without add-ons. Notable addons cause Bear Traps to re-arm themselves, or cause Survivors to become injured if you disarm a Bear Trap.
As The Trapper, you want to make sure you are controlling a specific area of the map with your traps. Running perks that slow down Survivors at the start of the game (Ruin, Corrupt Intervention) will give you time to set up your traps.
Survivors playing against The Trapper should make sure they watch out for traps in common spots for them: around the shack, in tall grass, underneath pallets, at window vaults — and should try to disarm traps whenever possible.
Trickster – Show Stopper
Pressing and holding the Power button will allow The Trickster to enter the Throw State. While in the Throw State, tap the Attack button to throw one blade, or hold the Attack button to throw a series of Blades — holding the Attack button will slow the Trickster’s movement speed and increase recoil, but increases throw rate as well. It takes 6 Blade Hits to injure a Survivor; each Blade that hits a Survivor will fill their Laceration meter (which is visible around their character portrait) — the Laceration Meter will slowly deplete if they haven’t been hit with a Blade for a while. Trickster starts the Trial with 44 Blades, and can replenish his Blades at a locker.
Each successful Blade attack charges the Event Meter. Once it is full, The Trickster can press the Active Ability Button to start The Main Event. During the Main Event, Trickster automatically throws Blades fur the duration of the ability, with an increased Throw Rate and unlimited Blades, and without the usual movement speed decrease from throwing multiple blades in a row. This ability can be canceled by pressing the Active Ability button again. Notable addons allow Blades to ricochet, explode on impact, and inflicts Exposed on Survivors whose Laceration Meters are nearly filled.
As The Trickster, experiment with tapping to throw your Blades instead of holding it down whenever accuracy is important. Try to chase Survivors away from high-walled loops and towards loops with only low obstacles, so you can use your Blades to hit them over the loop.
Survivors playing against The Trickster should conversely try to always run towards areas with high walls or other obstacles the Trickster can’t throw his Blades over. Be careful when hiding in lockers, as many Trickster players use Iron Maiden (which will Expose you and reveal your location when you exit a locker).
Twins – Blood Bond
The Twins are two Killers in one, and can be controlled separately (though not simultaneously). The Twins begin the Trial in control of Charlotte. Charlotte can Basic attack like every other Killer, but her only other ability is releasing Victor, or swapping to Victor. As Charlotte, pressing and holding the Power button will release Victor, and swaps control to Victor. Pressing the Ability button will swap control between siblings, assuming Victor is currently released.
While controlling Victor, Charlotte becomes Dormant, causing her to be Undetectable. She also retains collision. While controlling Charlotte, Victor becomes idle and begins shrieking (assuming he has been released and is on the map somewhere), and alerts Charlotte to any nearby Survivors within the audio range of his shrieking. While idle, Survivors can Crush Victor, which causes him to regrow in Charlotte. Victor can be recalled by Charlotte after 30 seconds, or automatically returns after 90.
While controlling Victor, pressing and holding the Ability button will charge a Pounce — pressing the Attack button while the Ability button is held will initiate the Pounce. If Victor hits a healthy Survivor with a Pounce, he latches on, injuring them and inflicting the Broken, Oblivious, and Incapacitated status effects while latched on. Victor also reveals nearby Survivors while latched on. If Victor hits an injured Survivor with a Pounce, they will instead be downed. If Victor misses his Pounce, he will momentarily be vulnerable to being Crushed by Survivors.
Victor cannot see Scratch Marks, but can see Pools of Blood and has high mobility. He can also search Lockers — if he finds a Survivor in one, he traps them in it for 10 seconds and control swaps to Charlotte. Notable addons Expose Survivors that crush Victor while he’s idle, grant Charlotte Undetectable after swapping to her, and inflict the Oblivious status effect on Survivors in Victor’s shriek radius.
As The Twins, hunt Survivors as Charlotte, and release Victor to catch them. Try to release Victor while Charlotte is positioned somewhere that blocks access to a Pallet or Window, or blocks Survivors from entering a building. Hide Victor near generators you want to protect, and use him to pressure one side of the map while Charlotte defends another.
Survivors playing against The Twins should take advantage of Victor’s inability to see Scratch Marks to hide from him (you can even run while doing so), he makes quite a bit of noise while running around the map despite his lack of a Terror Radius. If Victor misses a pounce, rush to him immediately and crush him.
Wraith – Wailing Bell
The Wraith is able to cloak or uncloak by pressing and holding the Power button. The bell can be heard up to 24 meters away, and the noise Wraith makes while cloaking/uncloaking can be heard at 40 meters. While cloaked, the Wraith has increased movement speed, no Terror Radius, and is completely invisible from far away. Within 20 meters, the Wraith can be seen as a faint shimmer.
The Wraith cannot attack while cloaked, but can interact with generators, lockers, pallets, and breakable walls. If a Wraith has a flashlight shone upon him for 2 seconds while he’s cloaked, he will be stunned. Notable addons cause the Wailing Bell sounds to echo throughout the whole map, make the bell completely silent, or allow Wraith to see Survivor auras within 12 meters while cloaked.
As the Wraith, use your speed to your advantage and pressure as many Survivors as possible. Approach generators from strange angles to surprise Survivors.
Survivors playing against Wraith should constantly check for his shimmer, and use the sound of his bell to determine if he’s currently stalking/chasing another Survivor. You can shine a flashlight on Wraith when he’s cloaked, stunning him.
There’s a lot to learn about Dead by Daylight’s Killers, and what’s in this guide is only an overview. If you have any specific questions about Killer Weapons and Powers, or want to leave a suggestion, use the comments below!
Killer Power Icons and Killer Images sourced from https://deadbydaylight.fandom.com/