Dead by Daylight knows that nothing will get a player’s heart racing like a murderous clown. It only took until Chapter 8: Curtain Call to introduce one to the game. Jeffrey Hawk, otherwise known as the Clown, is a strategic Killer that uses his power to incapacitate and corral Survivors. Although Clown is known to be a more difficult Killer to master, once you learn the intricacies of his power, you’ll be a formidable foe for Survivors to go up against. In this guide to the best Clown builds in DBD, we’ll cover everything you need to know to get the most out of playing as Clown.
Let’s get started!
Originally born as Kenneth Chase in 1932, the Clown’s mother died during childbirth, resulting in a rift between Kenneth and his father. A strong and tall young man, Kenneth began to work with the local dentist as a way to procure anesthetic. He began to trap animals by drugging them and ultimately killing them, making a collection of paws and feathers. In 1954, Kenneth killed his first man, adding his finger to the twisted souvenir box. Afraid of being discovered, Kenneth changed his name to Jeffrey Hawk and joined the circus, where he found new victims to add to his collection.
As a strategy-based killer, the Clown is known for elaborate lures to disorient Survivors, making it easier for him to pick them off one by one. For players who like the chase, the Clown is surprisingly agile and a great Killer to use in pursuit.
As the Clown’s history with anesthetics has shown, various concoctions and muscle relaxants is the base of his attack. At the start of the trial, Clown has a shared stock of 4 bottles to two different formulas: Afterpiece Tonic and Afterpiece Antidote. By tapping or holding the power button, the Clown charges and releases a bottle to use its ability.
When the Afterpiece Tonic breaks, it releases an intoxicating purple gas cloud for 10 seconds. The gas causes several afflictions, including:
- Impaired vision for 4 seconds
- Involuntary coughing for 2 seconds
- Suppressing the ability to fast vault for 2 seconds
- Incurs a 15% hindered status effect, which decreases their movement speed, for 2.5 seconds.
These effects last as long as a Survivor is in the cloud, and for a few seconds after leaving its AOE. A direct hit from the bottle will interrupt a Survivor’s interaction with other Survivors or props and give the Clown a bear-trap style indicator.
If a Survivor is moving through the gas cloud, it will cause the cloud to dissipate quicker after 0.4 seconds.
For Clown, there is a one second cancel cooldown, it takes 0.25 seconds each to wind up and throw each bottle and there’s a 3 second reload duration.
While the tonic is used to disable Survivors, the antidote is beneficial to both Clown and Survivors when they enter the cloud. This bottle initially releases a white, inactive gas cloud for 2.5 seconds before turning gold, which activates the invigoration period.
Invigorated players will benefit from a 10% haste effect for 5 seconds when in the gas cloud, which the Clown can use as a perk during chasing intervals or to traverse the map. The Antidote benefits are immediately neutralized, however, when a Tonic bottle breaks, which means the Clown can use it to get closer to the Survivor before attacking, but cannot use both effects at the same time.
Using both bottles is a great way to enhance the Clown’s ability while hunting Survivors, as well as challenge the Survivor’s game play ability, making it harder for them to escape a Clown during pursuit.
The Clown has three perks that are unique to him: Bamboozle, Coulrophobia, and Pop Goes the Weasel. These abilities impact various areas of gameplay, which gives the Killer more options to play with and create different effective builds for the Clown.
After Clown vaults through a window, the Entity will block that window. This heightens your vaulting speed and makes it impossible for Survivors to also vault that window. This ability makes it easier to cut off Survivor loops and increase the likelihood of downing a Survivor.
- Tier 1 (Yellow): Blocks window for next 8 seconds and increases general vaulting speed by 5%.
- Tier 2 (Green): Blocks window for next 12 seconds and increases general vaulting speed by 10%.
- Tier 3 (Purple): Blocks window for next 16 seconds and increases general vaulting speed by 15%.
This perk brings a fear of clowns to the next level. For every Survivor within your terror radius, their healing abilities are greatly hindered. This makes it challenging for Survivors to recover quickly from the Clown’s attacks while in his vicinity.
- Tier 1 (Yellow): Reduces Survivor healing speed by 30%.
- Tier 2 (Green): Reduces Survivor healing speed by 40%.
- Tier 3 (Purple): Reduces Survivor healing speed by 50%.
In addition, Coulrophobia increases the rotation speed of healing skill checks by 50%.
Pop Goes the Weasel
This perk is extremely useful for the Clown to impact generator progress. After hooking a Survivor, the Clown can damage a generator and instantly regress it by 20% of its current progression.
- Tier 1 (Yellow): Pop Goes the Weasel activates for the next 35 seconds.
- Tier 2 (Green): Pop Goes the Weasel activates for the next 40 seconds.
- Tier 3 (Purple): Pop Goes the Weasel activates for the next 45 seconds.
The perk deactivates once its timer elapses or after damaging a generator, meaning the Clown can’t have multiple generators impacted by Pop Goes the Weasel.
Best Add-ons for Clown
The best add-ons for Clown are the ones that enhance the abilities of the Afterpiece Tonic.
- Robin Feather: Common. Reduces the cool-down time between bottle throws by 40%.
- Fingerless Parade Gloves: Common. Increases the throw speed of the bottle by 25% and decreases the throw angle of the bottle by 15 degrees.
- Sticky Soda Bottle: Uncommon. Start the trial with 1 additional bottle and have the ability to carry 1 additional bottle.
- Kerosene Can: Uncommon. Intoxicated survivors suffer from the Blindness status effect for 30 seconds.
- Spirit of Hartshorn: Rare. Increases the size and spread of Afterpiece Antidote gas clouds by 20%.
- Flask of Bleach: Very Rare. Increases the Hindered penalty from intoxication by an additional 4%.
- Cigar Box: Very Rare. Any invigorated player sees the Auras of all other players within a radius of 16 meters.
- Cheap Gin Bottle: Ultra Rare. Start the trial with 2 additional bottles and have the ability to carry 2 additional bottles.
- Tattoo’s Middle Finger: Ultra Rare. The Auras of both intoxicated and invigorated Survivors are reveled to you for 6 seconds.
Best Builds for Clown
Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s get into the best Clown builds in DBD!
When you’re just starting out with Clown, using perks that make it harder for Survivors to heal will make it easier to down them. For that reason, we recommend using Coulrophobia with Nurse’s Calling (Nurse) and Sloppy Butcher (General).
Nurse’s Calling alerts you to any Survivors attempting to heal, making it easier to hinder their abilities. Sloppy Butcher increases the bleeding frequency of Survivors by 50%, and also increases the regression rate at which partial healing progression is lost because of hemorrhage by 15%. This makes it more likely for Survivors to try and heal themselves, activating the other perks.
In addition to healing monitoring perks, adding in Pop Goes the Weasel allows for adding generator pressure to Survivors, keeping them in the trial longer for you to attempt to kill all of them.
With Pop Goes the Weasel in your arsenal, creating a build that centers damaging generators is one effective way to keep Survivors trapped in the trial. We recommend using it alongside Scourge Hook: Pain Resonance (The Artist), which explodes the generator with the most progression and instantly regresses it by 15% of its maximum possible progression each time a survivor is hooked on a Scourge Hook for the first time.
Adding this along with Overcharge (Doctor) grants another bonus perk when damaging a generator. Once damaged, the generator will apply overcharge, giving the next Survivor who interacts with that generator a difficult skill check. If the Survivor fails that skill check, it will instantly regress the generator by 2% of its maximum possible progression. Once overcharge is applied it will also increase the regression speed from 85% to 130% over the next 30 seconds.
Lastly, by using Jolt (General) whenever a Survivor is put into the dying state by your basic attack, all generators within 32 meters will instantly explode and regress by 6% of its maximum possible progression.
Together, these perks will make it extremely difficult for Survivors to make progress on the generator, which will be advantageous for you.
For advanced players, we recommend a different tactic. Although sticking with a lot of generator pressure is a useful tactic for the Clown, by adding in one of his other perks and a Hex, you’ll have a well-rounded build that should be beneficial for downing and killing Survivors.
Keep both Pop Goes the Weasel and Jolt to impact generators to make it more challenging for Survivors to escape. Then add Bamboozle to give yourself an advantage when you’re chasing after Survivors. You’ll be able to shorten loops and have a better opportunity to injure and down Survivors.
Another perk to increase the effectiveness of Clown would be Hex: No one Escapes Death (General). Although it remains inactive if no dull totems are available, the hex totem will reveal the aura of Survivors within 4 meters of the totem and gradually expand that range to 24 meters over the course of 30 seconds. By making the auras of Survivors easier to see, you can more easily hunt down Survivors and attack them.
Join the High Ground!
That’s it for our take on the best Clown builds in DBD — thanks for reading! Let us know which Killer we should cover next in the comments, and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more content like this.