Dead by Daylight is a one versus four co-operative survival horror game focused on a cat and mouse mechanic of various survivors attempting to escape a nightmare realm, while the killer chases them down. Released in 2016, the game is still getting frequent updates and new downloadable content in the form of new survivors, killers, maps and cosmetics. The main gameplay revolves around playing either alone as a killer, or as a group of four survivors.
Survivor gameplay focuses on fixing five generators to power up the exit gates to escape, while trying to balance saving fellow survivors as well as purposely getting chased by the killer in order to give your teammates time to fix generators. However, if the players are not careful, the killer will catch up and punish them by injuring them and putting them to hang on a meat hook. The survivor gameplay is heavily co-operative focused, which is the anti-thesis of the killer.
Killer gameplay focuses on killing the players, as well as stopping the generators from being finished. Killers have the largest variety of gameplay differences as each killer is unique from each other, giving them a variety of playstyles. Characters such as ‘The Trapper’ can put bear traps around the area, chomping down on the leg of an unfortunate survivor, or ‘The Hillbilly’ who can rev up his chainsaw and dash; instantly downing any survivor hit during the dash.
The most important aspect of the gameplay is the psychology; mind games, reading the enemy and predicting what they will do are crucial if you want to win. The killer must be able to have strong game sense and understand where a player will attempt to run during a chase to catch up. While killers are almost always slightly faster than survivors, the pallet drops can easily stop a killer dead in their tracks. This gives the survivor a good chunk of distance from the killer, making it much harder for the killer to keep chasing. The killer must also make difficult choices; do I keep chasing this person, or do I try and go interrupt generators? Survivors must make similar choices, do I attempt to go and save my teammate, or do I keep working on the generator while the rest of the team is busy?
The game does have flaws; the game only gives you access to three, basic killers and a handful of survivors who are not as varied as the killers. If you want to unlock the rest of the killers, you need to buy them with real-life currencies or in-game currencies. Some characters are real-life currency only, these are the crossover characters such as Michael Myers from the Halloween movies, Freddy Krueger from The Nightmare from Elm Street or Pyramid Head from Silent Hill. The characters that can be bought with in-game currencies are extremely expensive; it is around 100 hours to unlock two characters. If you want the most out of the game, you will need to purchase the downloadable content as well, but fortunately you can pick and choose which ones you want. All characters also have unique perks that help you out during gameplay and some are more powerful than others but can only be obtained from specific characters. Unfortunately, this means that if you wish to play a character optimally, you might need to purchase the DLC pack characters to get their perks.
Overall, Dead by Daylight is an extremely unique game that has kept its momentum after four years. Highly recommended if you’re into horror survival games and have the funds to get the most out of it.
Publisher: Behaviour Interactive
Developers: Behaviour Interactive
Platforms: Microsoft Windows, PS4/5, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Android, iOS, Stadia, Xbox Series X/S
Genres: Survival horror
Pictures; screenshots taken by author in-game
Release Date: June 14th, 2016
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