Best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight (February 2024)

Best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight (February 2024)
Images via Behaviour Interactive

Written by 

Jack Roberts

Last updated 

5th Feb 2024 13:49

Contents

When it comes to playing as The Killer in Dead by Daylight, your Perks are essential for getting the Merciless Killer rank, and there's a fair few that are best to add to your loadout to become quite powerful, from Ultimate Weapon to the elusive Trail of Torment. 

With 34 Killers to choose from in the game, finding a perfect Perk combination can be daunting, as some Perks are essential in the current meta, while others provide unique and exciting playstyles for you to take into The Fog.

What are the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight?

For the current meta of Dead by Daylight, you’re going to need Perks that can help you damage generators quickly like Surge, find Survivors to begin a Chase like Barbecue & Chilli, and even influence the way you chase them with Bamboozle.

We’ve broken them down in our handy table below:

Perk Killer Description

Bamboozle

The Clown

After vaulting a window, it will become blocked by the Entity. Bamboozle also increases your vaulting speed by up to 15%

Barbecue & Chilli

The Cannibal

After hooking a Survivor, all other Survivors who are up to 40 meters away will have their Auras revealed for up 4 seconds. 

Batteries Included The Good Guy When within 12 meters of a completed Generator, you have 5% Haste. This lingers for 5 seconds after leaving the Generator's range. This Perk deactivates once all Generators are powered.

Corrupt Intervention

The Plague

3 Generators farthest from the Killer are blocked for up to 120 seconds. This Perk deactivates when a Killer puts their first Survivor into the Dying State.

Deadlock

The Cenobite

After a Generator has been completed, Deadlock will summon The Entity to block the Generator with the most amount of progress for up to 30 seconds.

Friends 'til the End

The Good Guy

When you hook a Survivor that is no the Obsession, the Obsession becomes Exposed for 20 seconds and reveals their aura for 10 seconds.

When you hook the Obsession, another random Survivor screams and reveals their position and becomes the Obsession.

Grim Embrace

The Artist

Each time a Survivor is hooked for the first time, gain a token. When moving 16 meters away from the hook, all Generators are blocked for 12 seconds.

Upon reaching 4 tokens, when moving 16 meters away from the hook, The Entity instead blocks all Generators for 40 seconds and the Obsessions aura is revealed to you for 6 seconds. Then, Grim Embrace deactivates.

Hex: Devour Hope

The Hag

Each time a Survivor is rescued while the Killer is more than 24 meters away, this Perk will gain a token (up to 5). With each token, the following effect occurs:

·       1 Token: No effect

·       2 Tokens: No effect

·       3 Tokens: Survivors become Exposed

·       4 Tokens: Survivors remain Exposed

·       5 Tokens: The Killer can perform a Memento Mori

Hex: Plaything

The Cenobite

After hooking a Survivor, a Dull Totem will become a Hex Totem. While this Hex is active, it will cause the associated Survivor to be Oblivious until it is cleansed.

Hex: Undying

The Blight

When Hex: Undying is active, the first Hex Totem Cleansed will always be this Perk, meaning other Hexes in play remain active on the first break.

Lethal Pursuer

The Nemesis

The Auras of Survivors are revealed at the start of the match for up to 7 seconds. 

Machine Learning

The Singularity

After kicking a Generator, Machine Learning activates. When a Generator you have kicked is repaired, the Killer will become faster and Undetectable for up to 30 seconds. 

Mindbreaker

The Demogorgon

While repairing a Generator, Survivors suffer from Exhaustion and Blindness. This lingers for 5 seconds after they have stopped their Repair actions. 

No Way Out

The Trickster

After hooking a Survivor for the first time, this Perk will gain a token (up to four). For every token this has, the Exit Gate Switches will be blocked for up to 8 seconds (a combined maximum of 42 seconds).

Rapid Brutality

The Xenomorph

You no longer gain Bloodlust in chases. Instead, after injuring a Survivor, you gain the Haste status for up to 10 seconds.

Save The Best For Last

The Shape

Earn a token for each successful basic attack that is not dealt to the Obsession. Each token grants a stackable 4% decreased successful basic attack cooldown, you can earn up to 8 tokens.

When you hit the Obsession with a basic or special attack, lose 2 tokens. You cannot gain tokens as long as your Obsession is sacrified or killed.

Scourge Hook: Pain Resonance

The Artist

4 random hooks in the match will become Scourge Hooks. When hooking a Survivor on a Scourge Hook, the Generator with the most progress will explode and immediately lose up to 15% of its progress before regressing. This can only be done 4 times. 

Surge

The Demogorgon

After a Survivor is put into the Dying State within 32 meters of a Generator, the Generator will explode and start regressing. It will instantly lose 8% of its maximum progress. 

Trail of Torment

The Executioner

Kicking a Generator makes you Undetectable for as long as it is regressing.

Ultimate Weapon

The Xenomorph

After opening a locker, the Perk activates for 30 seconds. Survivors entering your Terror Radius scream, reveal their location and gain Blindness for 30 seconds. This Perk then goes into cooldown.

Best DbD Killer Perks explained

Now that you've got a taste of which Perks are best for Killers in DbD, how about a breakdown of each of them, with some handy tips on Killers that will work well with each of them? 

Bamboozle

Bamboozle, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

Short and simple, this Clown Perk blocks windows after a Killer has vaulted it. While it may not seem like much, this can create a much more dynamic chase and will have the Survivor thinking on their feet about where to head next. It may even convince them to pre-emptively throw down a precious god pallet.

Barbecue & Chilli

Barbecue & Chilli, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

The Cannibal’s Barbecue & Chilli Perk has seen very few updates since its release and can help a Killer find their next victim after hooking a Survivor. Once a Survivor is hooked, the Auras of Survivors in the distance will be revealed. If you’re missing an Aura, it means a Survivor is close by.

This gives the Killer multiple opportunities to decide where to head next. Do you go to hunt down the Survivors you can see, or do you patrol the area in the hope of finding the Survivors you can’t?

Batteries Included

The Goody Guy's Batteries Included Perk. Modelled by Tiffany Valentine in DbD
Click to enlarge

Introduced alongside Chucky, Batteries Included was much stronger in the PTB when paired with Hex: No One Escapes Death and allowed Killers to zoom around the map when close to completed Generators. While The Good Guy's Perk still does that, it deactivates when the final Generators are completed to make it a little more balanced.

When paired with other Perks that require Survivors to complete Generators, it fits nicely into some of the best Perk builds for Chucky and other Killers.

Corrupt Intervention

Corrupt Intervention, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

When Corrupt Intervention was released with The Plague during the "Demise of the Faithful" Chapter, it would block three Generators that were furthest from the Killer at the start of the match.

However, following a few tweaks to the meta, it now comes with a caveat. While still capable of blocking Generators at the start of a match, it now deactivates once the Killer puts a Survivor into the Dying State.

Deadlock

Deadlock, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

The second of The Cenobite’s Perks on this list, Deadlock activates when a Generator is completed. The Entity is called upon to block the Generator with the most progress. While it may cost you a Generator to activate, it will also slow the game down significantly and allow you to claw back some much-needed hooks.

Friends 'til the End

Friends 'til the End, a powerful Chucky Perk in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

When paired with the right Perks, Chucky's Friends 'til the End can be a formidable one to face. By allowing you to expose and change Obsessions, there is always at least one member of a Survivor team occupied with, well, surviving. When paired with Nemesis and Rancor, you may even be able to pull off a Memento Mori to end a match quicker than expected.

Grim Embrace

The Artist with her Killer Perk, Grim Embrace in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

The Artist's Grim Embrace Perk sounded good on paper when it launched with her, but was lacking in the additional facets that would make it wholly viable. However, the latest update, which also saw Alan Wake enter The Fog, also buffed this Perk, allowing it to block Generators more frequently and rewarding you for hooking all the Survivors in the match at least once.

Hex: Devour Hope

Hex: Devour Hope, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

While Hex Perks may be contentious from a gameplay perspective, none are more deadly than The Hag’s Hex: Devour Hope. As this Hex builds up tokens, it becomes all the more devastating. If it isn’t cleansed in time, it can even allow the Killer to use their Memento Mori on a Survivor and end their time in The Fog prematurely.  

If you want to keep this vicious Hex up for longer, it's worth pairing with The Blight’s Hex: Undying, for that extra bit of protection.

Hex: Plaything

Hex: Plaything, one of the bets Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

The first of two Perks on this month’s list brought into the game with The Cenobite and the Hellraiser Chapter, Hex: Plaything is designed to provide a secondary objective and get those pesky Survivors off of your Generators.

After hooking a Survivor, a Dull Totem becomes a Hex Totem and is assigned to that Survivor. While that Hex Totem is active, the Survivor will be Oblivious, meaning they won’t hear your Terror Radius as you approach.

This added stealth element is excellent for Killers who don’t traditionally utilise it in their base kit and can make for some interesting builds (a silent Pyramid Head is a terrifying thing to be sure).

Hex: Undying

The Blight, wearing the Resident Evil William Birkin cosmetic, with his Perk Hex: Undying, one of the best Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

While Hexes may be some of the deadliest Perks in a Killer's repertoire, they can be easily broken and they're lost for the remainder of the match. However, Hex: Undying - a Blight Perk - offers a little extra protection.

When Hex: Undying is in play, if you have another Hex Totem that is Cleansed, it will instead be Undying that is lost. Effectively, it acts as a decoy and means Survivors will have to break one extra Hex before they can get to their true terrible target.

Lethal Pursuer

Lethal Pursuer, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

Introduced with The Nemesis during the first Resident Evil update, Lethal Pursuer is a fantastic Perk to get a match started quickly. At the start of the match, the Auras of all Survivors are shown to the Killer for seven seconds. But that’s not all: It also extends the duration of Aura reading Perks, abilities, and add-ons.

For players who may struggle to find Survivors at the start of the match, this can lead to some early hits that can put pressure on them to avoid you at all costs.

Machine Learning

Machine Learning, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

A newer addition to the Perk pool with the introduction of The Singularity, Machine Learning, like Deadlock, actually requires Survivors to complete their objectives. However, the resulting Undetectable status, along with additional Haste will undoubtedly catch many a Survivor off guard.

Is there anything scarier than a Nemesis running toward you without knowing it? No, I don't think there is.

Mindbreaker

Mindbreaker, one of the best Demogorgon Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

With the current meta revolving around Exhaustion Perks like Lithe and Sprint Burst, as well as Made For This introduced in the End Transmission Chapter, Mindbreaker punishes Survivors who choose to stick to their objective.

When a Survivor touches a Generator, they become Exhausted and Blind, meaning they cannot immediately run away and cannot use their Aura Reading abilities until they stop touching the Generator.

No Way Out

No Way Out, one of the best Killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

Once all the Generators in a Match have been repaired, it may seem that all hope is lost for the Killer. However, if you have The Trickster’s No Way Out Perk, you’ll be given some extra time to hunt down your prey.

After all of the Generators are repaired and the Survivors rush to open the Exit Gates, No Way Out will block them. The duration depends on how many of the four Survivors the Killer managed to hook.

Rapid Brutality

The Xenomorph wit  Rapid Brutality, one of the best Perks to use in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

With the inclusion of the Alien chapter, The Xenomorph has several powerful Perks that can sniff out Survivors and track them down. However, Rapid Brutality is a Perk that alters the way a core mechanic of the game works. By removing Bloodlust, it is instead replaced by the Haste effect to help you catch up to an injured Survivor.

This Perk would run wonderfully with other Perks that allow you to speed up a chase, particularly Save the Best for Last. Being able to catch up to Survivors in a chase is essential, and this adds a new dimension for you to do so.

Save The Best For Last

The Shape's Save the Best for Last Perk in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

While this is not the only Obsession Perk on this list, it is undoubtedly the most powerful of them. Introduced during the Halloween Chapter, Save The Best For Last is a teachable Perk for The Shape, and reduces the cooldown animation after hitting a Survivor that isn’t the Obsession.

In the last major meta shake-up, Save the Best For Last received a significant buff that increased the amount the cooldown animation was reduced. However, this has since been somewhat tweaked in the Alan Wake update. Nonetheless, it remains powerful and only time will tell if it stays in the current meta.

Scourge Hook: Pain Resonance

Scourge Hooke: Pain Resonance, one of the best killer Perks in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

Despite something of a nerf in recent updates, The Artist’s Scourge Hook: Pain Resonance still finds itself in current-meta builds, and operates as a devastating Generator regression Perk.

After hooking Survivors up to four times, the Generator with the most progress will explode, causing a massive repair penalty. If nobody is working on it at the time, it will continue to regress, dwindling the Survivors’ chances of escaping.

Surge

The Demogorgon with the Perk Surge, one of the best in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

Sometimes going out of your way to kick a Generator is a little too time-consuming, so why not have a Perk that damages them when you take a Survivor down? Surge is a brilliant Perk for Killers who only have one method of attack or need help with their time management.

Originally belonging to The Demogorgon before the removal of the Stranger Things content (and renamed Jolt), Surge became a General Perk available to all Killers without any DLC purchases (much like Sloppy Butcher and Scourge Hook: Monstrous Shrine). However, now that Stranger Things has returned to DbD, it has had its original name reverted and is back with the Demogorgon.

Trail of Torment

The Executioner with Trail of Torment, one of the best Perks to use in Dead by Daylight
Click to enlarge

When initially released with The Executioner and the addition of the Silent Hill chapter, Trail of Torment had a couple of caveats that stopped it from becoming a meta Perk. Namely, that it would deactivate after injuring a Survivor. However, since it removed this aspect, it has become exceptionally powerful.

Being able to kick a Generator to become Undetectable can make for some unique stealthy plays for Killers who wouldn't normally have a stealth aspect. We recommend using it with The Oni after activating his power so that you can rush at Survivors and hit them before they know what's coming.

Ultimate Weapon

Ultimate Weapon, a Xenomorph Killer Perk in DBD
Click to enlarge

Alongside Rapid Brutality, The Xenomorph's Ultimate Weapon Perk has gradually worked its way into the current meta following the introduction of the Alien chapter. By opening a locker, Survivors will scream when they enter your terror radius, revealing their location.

If you thought a charging Oni was terrifying enough with Infectious Fright, just imagine one making its way toward you with Ultimate Weapon. For Killers who have trouble sniffing out Survivors, this Perk is certainly one of the best Killer Perks currently and can make or break a match.

So, if you think you can be a stealthy Ellen Ripley hiding from The Xenomorph... then think again.

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With an ever-shifting meta, the Perks listed above may change in the updates to come, so be sure to keep this page bookmarked for any future developments.

In the meantime, check out our Dead by Daylight homepage, where you'll find the latest DbD codes so you can get some Bloodpoints to upgrade your Killers, or which Perks are on offer in the Shrine of Secrets this week.

Jack is a Guides Writer at GGRecon. With a BA (Hons) & MA in English and Creative Writing, he was also the Gaming Editor for The Indiependent. When not pondering which game has the best cup of coffee (and drinking far too much of it himself), he can often be found playing Dead by Daylight, Street Fighter or making yet another build in Bloodborne.

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