Dead by Deadlight is not your ordinary survivor horror game. Sure, things seem pretty straightforward at first: you play as one of five possible survivors (each with their own quirk) and you team up with the other players in order to make it out alive. And then, there is always the possibility that on the next round of play, you get to be the bad guy. Yes, Dead by Daylight is not only about surviving, it is also about killing. Every player has the potential to play one of 4 possible killer variants and are tasked with hunting down the other players in the match.
Not Easy Being Hunted
Playing as a survivor in this game is incredibly scary. The setting alone is enough to make most people paranoid (stages are set in stereotypical serial killer environments such as abandoned farms, a broken down mansion, junkyard, etc), but knowing that there is a live, human player that is constantly scheming, planning, and adjusting their strategy to bring you down (as compared to the more predictable nature of an AI controlled NPC opponent), should be enough to make your hair stand on end. This is further made worse by the fact that the game is heavily skewed to the advantage of the killer -which means that all the fear will be coming from the side of the survivors.
Of course, survivors do have their own bonuses: they can push stuff around, climb windows, hide in storage lockers, use healing items, and more. Also, when they move and work as a group, it becomes far less likely for the killer to successfully stop them all. Making it out of the match alive requires the survivors to work together as team and to be fully familiar with the different abilities that each one has.
Death Becomes You
The game takes a completely different feel when you are the killer. First off, the viewpoint changes from third person to first person, and you are able to take actual offensive actions that are outright harmful to the players. Each killer type has their own unique sets of abilities (invisibility, traps, teleportation, or near-fatal instant attacks) and quirks that would allow them to hunt down and capture the survivors. While killing off survivors directly is eventually possible in the game, all killers start out needing to grab the prone bodies of survivors and then hang them on meat hooks. Later on, it is possible to unlock quirks that allow you to instantly kill a survivor on the spot.
As a survivor, you will have to play alone against a full team of four players trying to find a way to avoid you and survive. Fortunately, killers have the ability to detect all the generators in the stage, which means that you instantly know the moment a survivor tries to fix on in the hopes of opening the exit. Obviously, there is nothing scary about being the killer in the match since it is the other players who are scared of you. This whole new gameplay experience is not only unique, but also plenty of fun as you must come up with strategies in order to psych out your opponents and trick them out of their hiding spots. After all, while the killer is the most powerful of all the players in the field, simply trudging about aimlessly will leave you unable to adapt to the different and desperate strategies that players will take in order to survive.
If Looks Could Kill
Visually, Dead by Daylight is an incredibly well designed game. Players will love the creepy textures and lighting used in the stages. It does not matter if you are the killer or a survivor, the environments in the game will make you feel as if the very ground itself must be made of malice. The stage design is not just aesthetically superb, but also functional. There are nooks and crannies for players to hide in, and yet the layout is always so confusing that killers can use it to their advantage. Locations of important spots are also randomized by the game which means that players will not be able to just camp spots or stick to a single tactic every time.
A New Way to Have Horror
If you love horror, you will want to play this game. As most narratives give audiences the perspective of the survivors, the shift to the point of view of the killer (and actually wanting to win for yourself) creates a new dichotomy to the genre. It is no longer just about horror being a scary, but as a tool to inflict fear upon others. Dead by Daylight is an incredible game because of this, and with the combination of great gameplay, responsive controls, beautiful graphics, and an obvious love for all things horror, we certainly recommend trying this one out.