Dead By Daylight | Beginner’s Guide to Every Killer

A beginner’s guide for each Dead By Daylight killer. Includes all of their abilities, strengths and weaknesses, and optimal perks for each.

Dead by Daylight Killer Guide

Dead By Daylight is like a sadistic game of cat and mouse in which a team of survivors must escape the pursuit of a killer. It may sound like a simple premise but there is in fact quite a bit of depth behind it, thanks to each killer’s distinct playstyle and the game’s high amount of customization. New players to the game may find all of the information hard to process, so we wrote a guide that should help beginner’s and veterans alike learn how to play each killer.


A Killer’s Objective

As a killer you have one objective and one objective only, to kill every last survivor. This can be achieved by catching them and sacrificing them on hooks, or by using a variety of different killer powers and perks.

Killers can not be killed by survivors, but if all survivors manage to escape then you have failed as a killer.


Trapper

A killer that lives up to his name by placing bear traps around the map to catch his victims. The Trapper is focused on physical attributes and making use of strength and fear. He also has the highest movement speed in the game making him the best long-distance chaser among the killers. Bear traps will completely stop a survivor in place, making them an easy kill. But they can be destroyed with certain tools, so it’s best to hide them in hard to see areas like grass or behind obstacles. Using survivors to bait other survivors into your bear traps is a great tactic as the Trapper.

Dead by Daylight Killer Guide

One survivor watches the Trapper while another hangs around.

Power – The Bear Trap

The bear trap is used by the Trapper to catch survivors. A Survivor getting caught in the bear trap can get help being freed or attempt to escape by own hand. The survivors also gets injured. As the bear trap catches a survivor, a noise indicates where the caught survivor is.

Killers can get caught in bear traps too, but are able to get out after 3 seconds.

Optimal Perks

  • Brutal Strength – Being able to smash through pallets faster makes the Trapper and even better chaser.
  • Hex: Ruin – Increasing the time it takes a survivor to do generators makes setting bear traps easier.
  • Tinkerer – Has incredible synergy with Trapper’s bear traps.
  • Thanatophobia – The Trapper more than any killer needs as much time as he can get to set traps.
  • Whispers – Great for detecting survivors as well as seeing high traffic areas to trap.

Optimal Add-ons

  • Trapper Gloves
  • Trapper Bag
  • Trap Setters
  • Setting Tools

Wraith

A killer that can turn invisible to move about undetected. The Wraith is all about tracking and hunting Survivors, making it easier to catch and kill. While invisible the Wraith moves at an accelerated speed making it very easy to get near survivors. However after becoming visible the Wraith’s location is revealed to all survivors and he can not move for a short duration. This makes it especially hard for the Wraith to chase someone. The Wraith is unable to interact while invisible and can be burned by flashlights, stunning him.

Power – The Invisibilty Bell

The invisibility bell is used by the Wraith. Once activated the killers becomes invisible and a loud bell sound is heard. The killer can walk around and will collide with objects and survivors. Invisibility is deactivated by pressing a button. Upon being visible the killer can not move for a few seconds.

Optimal Perks

  • A Nurse’s Calling – Reveals to the Wraith when a survivors is healing allowing him to turn invisible and arrive to their location.
  • Brutal Strength – Getting through pallets quicker is mandatory on the Wrath.
  • Play With Your Food – Makes you move faster allowing you to better chase survivors.

Optimal Add-ons

  • “Swift Hunt” Soot
  • “Swift Hunt” Mod
  • “Swift Hunt” White
  • “Windstorm” Blood

Hillbilly

A chainsaw wielding maniac that can inflict dying state in a single hit. The Hillbilly is about persistence and resilience. This will make it harder for survivors to foil the Hillbilly. The Hillbilly is a very fast and versatile killer able to cut down pallets with ease and inflict damage with two different weapons. Watch out though because the chainsaw is very difficult to control and if you happen to miss with it or hit an object you will be stunned.

Power – Chainsaw

The chainsaw is used by the Hillbilly and must be charged before using. As it is charged, the Killer will bolt towards, attacking with the chainsaw. When the killer attacks, steering is tougher and upon impact with something in the level, the killer will stop. The chainsaw is very powerful, so when a killer hits a survivors, the Survivor will end up in the dying state immediately.

Optimal Perks

  • A Nurse’s Calling – With great mobility Hillbilly can zip around the map and detect anyone healing.
  • Deerstalker – Allows you to inflict dying state on one survivor and immediately turn your attention to another.
  • Tinkerer – Works incredibly well with the chainsaw charge.
  • Whispers – Will allow you to detect survivors over the sound of the chainsaw.

Optimal Add-ons

  • Chainsaw File
  • Depth Gauge Rake
  • Homemade Muffler
  • Primer Bulb
  • Spark Plug

The Nurse

A slow calculating killer capable of blinking through objects to surprise her victims. The Nurse is focused on spotting and tracking, making it harder for survivors to hide. The blink ability is the most powerful ability among all of the killers. An experienced Nurse player is able to blink many times in succession, making them virtually unstoppable. But mastering blinks is very challenging and timing one wrong will leave you stunned and easy to detect.

Power – Spencer’s Last Breath

Spencer’s Last Breath – or Blink – can be used to teleport to a fixed distance in a straight line. The twist is that the blink can be extended in a series of short warps if the player is skilled enough. Blinking allows the Nurse to quickly traverse the maps as she can cross walls, characters and other collisions.

Optimal Perks

  • A Nurse’s Calling – Since the Nurse is stunned so often this is a great perk to track down injured survivors who may have escaped.
  • Bloodhound – Another perk to help you track down injured survivors who may have escaped.
  • Stridor – Great for determining where survivors are and giving you a clear path to blink towards.
  • Whispers – Another great perk to locate survivors to blink to.

Optimal Add-ons

  • Anxious Gasp
  • Dull Bracelet
  • Metal Spoon
  • Pocket Watch
  • White Nit Comb
Dead by Daylight Killer Guide

A building is no obstacle for the Nurse.


The Shape

A stealth based serial killer focused on catching survivors off guard. The killer’s perks are focused around “obsession;” just like Michael Myers is obsessed with killing, the killer picks a survivor, and tags him/her as his “obsession”. The Shape excels at surprising his victims thanks to his smaller terror radius. The ability to change level on demand make The Shape an unpredictable opponent. But his slow speed and poor chase ability can hold him back early on.

Power – Evil Within

Evil within is constructed around two phases. In the first phase, the killer is weaker and slower, but has heightened detection skills. When gazing at survivors a gauge fills, and when full, the power enters phase two. In this phase the killer is faster and more powerful, but loses the heightened detection skill.

Optimal Perks

  • A Nurse’s Calling – A great choice with the inherently lower terror radius. Survivor’s will fell safe enough to heal and reveal themselves.
  • Brutal Strength – Any help The Shape can get when it comes to chasing is a must.
  • Monitor & Abuse – Gives you an even small terror radius, making you virtually undetectable.
  • Whispers – Great at revealing survivors and allowing you to sneak up on them.

Optimal Add-ons

  • Dead Rabbit
  • J. Myers Memorial
  • Memorial Flower
  • Tombstone Pierce

The Hag

A tiny terror focused on strategically damning her foes. The Hag revolves around a gameplay mechanic: the hex totems. They are focused on cursing the survivors and sapping their abilities. The curse lasts until the survivors manage to track the hex totem down and tear it down. The Hag may be a very slow character but her traps allow her to teleport directly to her prey. Crouching or shining a flashlight on these traps will destroy them to hide them well.

Power – Blackened Catalyst

Source of the Hag’s power, a blackened finger used as a catalyst to her terrible power: the phantasm traps. The Hag draws in the soil to set a trap for the survivors. When a survivor finds her trap, a lifelike illusion of the killer appears in front of them. Once the trap is triggered, The Hag has a choice. To enter the physical illusion when the survivors are within her reach or use it as a decoy to take down her unsuspecting prey before the phantasm collapses into pieces of dirt and mud.

Optimal Perks

  • A Nurse’s Calling – The Hag has a smaller than normal terror radius which synergizes well.
  • Brutal Strength – While The Hag is a poor chaser you still want this to break pallets faster.
  • Hex: Ruin – Gives The Hag more setup time which is crucial to her kit.
  • Monitor & Abuse – Another perk that works well with the The Hag’s smaller terror radius.

Optimal Add-ons

  • Cypress Necklet
  • Dead Fly Mud
  • Powdered Eggshell
  • Rope Necklet

The Doctor

A ruthless killer hellbent on terrorizing his foes. The Doctor thrives on hindering and creating problems for the survivors. The sole stature of The Doctor, infuses fear and terror in those around him. The Doctor can shock survivors to increase their madness. But his slow movement speed and reliance on perks and add-ons can make him a frustrating killer to play as.

Power – Carter’s Spark

Is it a gift, or a curse? The Entity has ignited a corrupted and inexhaustible spark in the Doctor’s heart which allows him to generate electroconvulsive power at will. His insidious treatment corrupts the minds of those it touches. Victims shocked by the corrupt spark begin to lose their grip on reality and, with repeated exposure, inevitably succumb to madness.

Optimal Perks

  • Agitation – Will help make The Doctor slightly faster, something he desperately needs.
  • Brutal Strength – Smashing through pallets faster is crucial to catching survivors.
  • Distressing – Significantly increases the rate at which survivors gain madness.
  • Overcharge – Works very well with The Doctor’s playstyle.

Optimal Add-ons

  • “Calm” Mod
  • Moldy Electrode
  • “Order” Mod
  • Polished Electrode
Dead by Daylight Killer Guide

The Doctor, trying to discover who forgot to pay the cable bill.