As Behaviour Interactive’s popular asymmetrical horror Dead by Daylight turns six, the developer has – as they have in previous years – released some interesting gameplay facts. So, in case you were wondering, here are the top played killers and survivors in DBD, as well as the most-used Perks.
Alongside the most played characters over the last six years, Behaviour has also revealed some huge gameplay stats. For example, players have dedicated a total of 1,081,755,780 hours into Dead by Daylight between July 2017 and May 2022. During those hours, killers have made nearly 13 billion sacrifices while survivors have slogged away fixing over 20 billion Generators. What we’re most interested in, though, is who the most popular characters are, and, of course, the best builds.
Most played DBD killers and Perks
According to the stats released in the infographic below, the killer podium places are awarded to The Wraith in third place, The Trapper in second, and The Huntress in the top spot. Hardly surprising for anyone who’s played any significant amount of time as a survivor in DBD, as these are definitely among those you’ll play against the most.
Not only that, but they are also three of the four starter killers coming to the DBD Dating Sim, Hooked on You – presumably thanks to their popularity in the original game.
But what about killer Perks? If you play as a killer, you’ll undoubtedly have your favorite builds ready to go, but what does the rest of the world say? Interestingly, just one of the top three killer Perks is a General Perk, i.e. a Perk that can be obtained by any killer without being unlocked, and the other two do not belong to any of the top three killers. In perhaps an unsurprising turn of events, the top three killer Perks have not changed from last year, and are BBQ & Chili at the top, followed by Hex: Ruin and Hex: NOED. This will likely change in the next year, though, once an overhaul to the Perk system takes place.
Barbeque & Chili — teachable Cannibal Perk
The most popular Perk over the last five years of DBD is Barbeque & Chili, a teachable Perk belonging to The Cannibal. This perk can only be unlocked for other killers if The Cannibal is levelled up to Level 35, or if it is purchased with Iridescent Shards from the Shrine of Secrets.
Barbeque & Chili is an Aura-reading Perk, and allows killers to see where players are on the map, so it’s understandable why it is one of the more popular Perks in killer builds. With Barbeque & Chili equipped, every time you hook a Survivor, all other Survivors’ locations are revealed to you, as long as they are more than 40 meters from the hook. This means not only do you know where to head for your next victim, but also how many Survivors are near enough to the hook to come to the rescue. You can base a lot of decisions off the results of this Perk.
Hex: Ruin — teachable Hag Perk
Originally available on The Hag, Hex: Ruin is only available to those who have The Hag in their collections and have levelled her up to Level 35. The only other way to obtain Hex: Ruin is from the Shrine of Secrets.
Hex: Ruin affects Generator repairs all the while it is active, and causes Generator repair progress to regress quickly when they are not being repaired. In other words, if you as the killer chases a player away from a Generator, their progress will automatically start reversing, even without you damaging the Generator itself. When the Survivor returns, they will have longer to complete the generator repairs.
A Hex Perk, Ruin only works as long as there is a Hex Totem standing. At the start of a match, a random totem will become hexed, and will glow. Survivors that come across this Totem will be able to cleanse it and permanently remove Ruin’s effects for the rest of the match.
Hex: No One Escapes Death (NOED) — General Perk
NOED doesn’t activate until the Exit Gates are powered, meaning it can completely change the outcome of the game. When the Exit Gates are powered, if there is at least one dull totem remaining on the map, NOED will activate and remaining Survivors will become Exposed, meaning they can be downed in just one hit. Your movement speed as killer will also be increased slightly.
Thanks to the dull totem requirement, Survivors can do their best to avoid NOED from being activated, by cleansing or blessing every Dull Totem on the map. Or, and it’s tough, but once NOED is activated, Survivors can still cleanse the glowing, Hex Totem to remove its effects.
It stands to reason, then, that the best killer builds will include Huntress, Trapper or Wraith with at least one or two of the above Perks. We were a little surprised that NOED was actually third and not first, as it’s a game-changing killer perk.
Most play DBD survivors and Perks
Oddly, the most played Survivors podium has completely turned around this year. As we entered year 5, Claudette Morel was the most played Survivor, followed by Meg Thomas, and then Feng Min. As you can see, a year later, Feng and Claudette have swapped places. With these figures being based on the entire five-year period, we can only assume the surge of popularity Feng Min has experienced this year!
Again, when it comes to the top Perk builds for Survivors, they are perhaps unsurprising for die-hard fans of the game. They’re also the same as last year, but in a slightly different order. Dead Hard has gone from the third most used Survivor Perk to the top, while Borrowed Time remains in second, and Self-Care drops to third.
Unlike killers, survivors technically don’t have their own unique abilities, as their teachable Perks can also be unlocked for other Survivors. Looking at the top three Perks, of which only one belongs to a top Survivor, it’s clear the Survivor girl-gang above must be popular for their appearance…
Dead Hard — teachable David King Perk
Dead Hard is an understandably popular Survivor Perk, and is frustrating as a killer up against it!
A David King Perk, Dead Hard can again only be purchased from the Shrine of Secrets or unlocked by upgrading David to Level 35. When you are injured by the killer, you’ll get a burst of adrenaline, causing you to dash forward when you press the Active Ability button. You also won’t take any damage when you dash, so if you use this at the right time, it will prevent you from being put into the dying state by the killer – and may even give you enough time to escape their chase.
You will be inflicted with the Exhausted status effect once used, though, so you’ll need to get somewhere quick to settle and recover.
Borrowed Time — teachable Bill Overbeck Perk
Borrowed Time is a Bill Overbeck Perk, so again needs unlocking or purchasing from the Shrine of Secrets to be used with any one of the top three Survivors.
An altruistic Perk, Borrowed Time allows another Survivor to be affected by Endurance for some time immediately after you unhook them. This means they cannot be downed to the dying state, instead triggering Deep Wound if they are hit again. The Deep Wound status effect may eventually down the Survivor, if they get hit again or fail to heal themselves within 20 seconds, but it gives them a bit of a chance to get away from a camping killer.
Self-Care — teachable Claudette Morel Perk
In contrast to Bill’s Borrowed Time, Self-Care is a little more self-serving. A Claudette Morel Perk, Self-Care being in the top three will be partly to thank for Claudette’s own place in the top three Survivors. To use Self-Care on any other Survivor, you will again want to obtain it from the Shrine of Secrets, or level Claudette’s Bloodweb up to 40.
Self-Care does pretty much what it says in the name, and allows the Survivor to heal themselves without a First-Aid Kit or Circle of Healing Boon Totem. As such, you can heal anywhere, any time, without another Survivor to help. This can come in clutch at any time, but is particularly useful for beginners.
Don’t forget, thanks to the DBD 6th anniversary celebrations, the Shrine of Secrets is refreshing every 24 hours at the moment, and all Perks are discounted! Check in every day if you’re interested in any of the above Perks, or any others!
While these stats don’t particularly come as a surprise based on what we see in game and use ourselves, it’s still always nice to see! Do you play with these Characters are Perks or do you stray from the norm? Let us know your favorite DBD build in the comments below.