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Dead by Daylight: Best Killers Ranked (2024)

There are 32 formidable Killers that players can choose and Survivors can go up against. Each one has their own unique power and set of perks that make them challenging in their own way. From stealth and range Killers to speed and might Killers, there’s a range of game play styles available to you. 

Of these fearsome creations, there are 15 in particular who stand out to us, due to their powerful abilities and terrifying presence. 

Read on as we rank the 15 best Killers in Dead By Daylight.

DBD Killers Tier List

DBD-Killer tier list top 15

DBD Killers Ranked Good to Best

Here’s a closer look at the killers in our tier list.

Let’s go!

Doctor – D Tier

Doctor inflicts madness on his Survivors, which is powerful, but doesn’t necessarily convert to kills.

Pick rate: 3% | Kill Rate: 49%

The Doctor thrives on inducing madness, making it deliberately difficult for Survivors to tell delusion from reality and giving the Doctor an advantageous path to victory. 

His power, Carter’s Spark, relies on shock therapy and static blast, causing Survivors to hallucinate and scream in terror, revealing their locations. This is specifically designed to terrorize and distract Survivors all while keeping them from finishing generators. Doctor can use his proximity, especially with his perk Monitor and Abuse, which increases terror radius and field of view, to keep that pressure solid on Survivors throughout the game. His generator regression perk, Overcharge, which many Killers will use for a generator build, also adds an edge by revealing auras as well as halting generator progress. Unfortunately, his third perk, Overwhelming Presence, is  more focused on annoying the Survivors by making it harder for them to use specific items than helping to disrupt their objectives or making it easier to injure them. 

The best builds for Doctor when playing Dead By Daylight are the ones that focus on generator pressure as well as adding more challenges for the Survivors to overcome and keeping you within a closer proximity to Survivors for his power. 

The Legion – D Tier

Legion has gone through much reworking as their power is so effective. Although not as powerful as they once were, Legion is still a threat to go up against.

Pick Rate: 5% | Kill Rate: 52%

One of the highlights for Legion is they are one of the easier Killers for new players to learn, while still being effective. Legion is best at locating and chasing down Survivors, and their attacks force Survivors to mend their wounds before healing, which keeps them occupied and injured longer. Their power Feral Frenzy boosts running speed while linking attacks between multiple Survivors, and gaining additional abilities: Feral Vault and Feral Slash. While more experienced Survivors will know their way around Legion’s mangling attacks, when a player masters a Legion, it’s sure to leave one bloody mess. Builds that work best for Legion are ones that can help them easily find multiple Survivors and make it harder for them to heal, because Legion’s power already requires an additional step with healing.   

The best legion perk is Discordance, which highlights any generator within range being repaired by two or more Survivors. Generator and stealth perks are some of the best strategies to take with Legion because they’re already fast and hard to escape when in a chase, so it’s finding the Survivors that is a Legion’s main goal. Their other Perk, Mad Grit, is also helpful with Legion because it removes the cool-down for missed basic attacks, giving Legion an opportunity to strike again. While this might not be as important for more experienced Legion players, when you’re starting out, having that wiggle room between attacks is really useful.  Legion’s third perk, Iron Maiden, I find to be less useful with this Killer, because there’s less of a need for them to be using lockers. For Killers who utilize lockers more, I could see this having more use, for example with the Huntress, but for Legion, perks that helps in tracking or generator disruption might make a more beneficial build. 

The Skull Merchant – D Tier

Skull Merchant relies on drones to help her track and stalk Survivors. Although an extremely helpful asset for hunting, drone tampering and avoiding monitored areas are how experienced Survivors find their way around her tricks.

Pick Rate: 2% | Kill Rate: 64%

One of the newest additions to Dead By Daylight, Skull Merchant is the first Killer to have a mechanical ally that aids in her detection and debilitation of targets. Eyes in the Sky has four drones that create a circular detection zone when in active mode that alerts the Killer to their location. Although it takes more practice to get a feel for how her drones work, after you get a handle on that, it will be tough for Survivors to go against you. 

Even though the drones can be tampered with, the stakes to do so are high for Survivors to do it without alerting Skull Merchant, making her an inconvenient Killer to go up against. She also has a fantastic set of perks that can be useful for playing her, as well as many other killers. With THWACK!, after a Survivor is hooked you can break down a pallet or wall and any Survivors within range will scream and reveal their aura. Using this with Game Afoot, allows you to focus on a Survivor with the highest cumulative chase time, giving you an edge while pursuing them. Leverage gives you a stackable reduction to healing speeds, which keeps more players injured and gives you more opportunity to track them. 

For Skull Merchant, builds that focus on derailing Survivor’s progress and keeping them injured are most beneficial because her power is already focused on detection and hunting. You just need to close the gaps in chases and keep them injured. 

The Cannibal – C Tier

With a chainsaw that can plow through multiple Survivors at once, the Cannibal adds ample tension to the trial. Fortunately for Survivors, the chainsaw takes tome time to rev up, giving them a chance to escape.

Pick Rate: 3% | Kill Rate: 53%

The second Dead By Daylight Character to swing a chainsaw, Cannibal has a few similar characteristics to Hillbilly, but where the latter has the main benefit of speed, Cannibal can potentially hit multiple Survivors at once. Bubba’s Chainsaw has three charges on his chainsaw, and a successful hit is enough to put a healthy Survivor into the dying state, as well as mow another Survivor close by down when the tantrum meter is filled. The biggest challenge to Cannibal, however, is that his charge takes some time to rev up, giving Survivors ample time to try to escape or loop him. 

Cannibal also comes with a good set of perks, especially Barbecue & Chilli, which reveals Survivor auras at least 60 meters away for five seconds. This is a perk that many Killers will take advantage of, and allows for you to find Survivors a little further away on the map. 

His other perks, however, can be really hit or miss depending on what the Survivors are running, or if they’re playing as a group or solo-queued. Knock Out blocks the aura for a Survivor in the dying state further than 32 meters, and decreases their crawl and recovery speed, which can be helpful, especially if you’re trying for a slug build, but can be overridden by some Survivor perks that are designed to help Survivors keep track on each other. Similarly, Franklin’s Demise, can be helpful in forcing Survivors to drop their items if they brought something special in like a key, but isn’t necessarily crucial to getting more Survivors hooked. 

The best builds for Cannibal focus on monitoring the map for Survivors and how to keep Survivors from escaping the trial once the exit gates have opened. 

Nemesis – C Tier

Aided by tentacle strike, contamination and two zombies, Nemesis is a rough Killer to encounter in the trial. Although the zombies can be killed and ignored by experienced Survivors, there’s a lot to balance when playing against Nemesis.

Pick Rate: 4% | Kill Rate: 47%

As a pursuit based killer, Nemesis is a killer that succeeds in tracking and ambushing. He’s quick and his power, T-Virus,  has multiple levels to it, not just hitting Survivors but contaminating them. This contamination not just expands Nemesis’s capabilities, but will keep you alerted if a Survivor chooses to rid themselves of infection. Although, many Survivors have learned to hold off as long as possible before injecting themselves, in order to keep Nemesis from taking advantage of those benefits. His two A.I-controlled zombies contribute added pressure to survivors; however, they also can be killed by Survivors and for experienced players, easier to avoid. So although he has a lot of power in theory, there’s still a lot of loopholes that Survivors will find when going against him. 

That’s where the build comes in. The best part about Nemesis are his perks, which aid the Killer in tracking and generator pressure, which we recommend as part of a build for Nemesis. Lethal Pursuer reveals the auras of all Survivors to you, which is a huge advantage and a perk that many stealth and tracking Killers will also include in their builds. Not only can you immediately go after who is in the area, but you have a vague idea where to go next. When combined with, Hysteria, which impacts injured Survivors from hearing the terror radius, you can add another perk focusing tracking healing or injured Survivors, and keep pursuing. 

For generator pressure, another solid perk of his is Eruption, which will explode damaged generators when a Survivor is put in the dying state. It requires some planning ahead of time, but comes in really helpful as you start downing Survivors. 

The Plague – C Tier

With the ability to infect Survivors and the environment, Plague is a gnarly killer. She only strengthens as Survivors cleanse themselves, which often means Survivors refrain from cleansing. Fortunately for Plague, that comes with its own disadvantages.

Pick Rate: 2% | Kill Rate: 54%

With sickness as her main weapon, The Plague uses indirect methods to weaken Survivors and make it easier to take them down. Vile Purge not only infects Survivors, but also objects in the environment, which spreads an unending cycle of sickness that can only be broken through cleansing. The only cure for which is Pools of Devotion, which in turn feeds the strongest part of Plague’s power — giving her bile that will cause Survivors to lose a health state. 

The biggest downside to Plague is Survivors refusing to cleanse themselves, instead taking the broken status effect and letting the illness spread to everyone and everything. This still gives Plague some advantages if you plan for that, such as focusing on generator regression and other perks that disrupt Survivor’s progress. By keeping Survivors in the game longer, you have a better chance of the sickness reaching its final form and making it easier to round them up. In her case, a slug build can make a lot of sense because Survivors will be playing while injured and sick. 

Her perks already lend themself to this: Corrupt Intervention blocks three generations located farthest away from you at the start of the trial, Infectious Fright causes Survivors within your terror radius to scream and reveal their locations when another Survivor is put into the dying state, and Dark Devotion expands your terror radius whenever your obsession enters the injured state. 

Another perk to add would be one that focuses either on generator regression or disrupting healing, both of which are useful to either keeping Survivors injured or slowing their progress.  

Huntress – B Tier

One of the most iconic Dead By Daylight Killers, Huntress lobs hatchets across the map at any Survivors unlucky enough to get in her way.

Pick Rate: 6% | Kill Rate: 48%

One of the best things about Huntress is that she’s a strong Killer while being relatively easy to learn. As a ranged killer, she throws hunting hatchets from a distance and her perks are designed to help you hunt and track Survivors so you can get close enough to attack them. While more experienced Survivors are more likely to know how to loop Huntress and avoid hatchets, as your skillset evolves there are ways to plan for that. 

This Killer also requires some preparation, as you do have to routinely refill your hatchets in lockers. That’s also why many players will add a locker-related perk to their build, because they’re spending so much time opening them anyway. Adding that in addition to hunting or stalking perks, such as perks from the Trapper, the Shape or the Ghostface, can also give Huntress an edge. 

The benefits to Huntress is she’s a killer who can do a lot from the outskirts. Her ranged weapon with the perk Territorial Imperative, which reveals a Survivor’s aura as they enter the basement, allow you to sneak up on Survivors in a enclosed space, making it hard for them to escape. Perks that also give Huntress an undetectable status can be useful, such as her perk Beast of Prey. 

For something a little different than a tracking perk, her Hex: Huntress Lullaby offers a stackable power progression for every missed skill check, but that also depends on Survivors to miss skill checks, which they’re already trying not to do. 

The Hag – B Tier

Beyond the jump scares, Hag’s teleportation abilities are a force to be reckoned with. Patient Survivors, however, know how to avoid her traps.

Pick Rate: 1% | Kill Rate: 55%

This Killer is challenging to learn and terrifying to go up against, which is unsurprising given the mix of her jump scares, teleportation abilities and perks. Her power, Blackened Catalyst, gives her the ability to set up 10 traps that spawn a mud phantom of Hag and give her the ability to teleport to the tripped trap. On its own, it’s incredibly powerful, and when put in a build that slow generator progression and exacerbate injuries, like sloppy butcher, there’s a lot of damage the Hag can do. 

As powerful as she is, her perks do come with the drawback of being Hex totems, which can be cleansed by Survivors, leaving you with none. While risky, the longer it takes for Survivors to cleanse the totems the more crippling the hex’s impacts become, such as Hex: Devour Hope that gives you stackable benefits each time a Survivor is rescued from a hook. If you keep Survivors distracted from finding all five totems, you have the ability to kill Survivors by your own hand. 

Even Hex: Ruin can be a huge benefit until its cleansed, regressing a generator to at least half its normal progression speed until a Survivor is killed, which is enough to deeply set back Survivors early on in the game. Her third Hex: The Third Seal, gives Survivors the blindness status effect, but out of all three of the hex perks to run, it’s the least useful. 

If you do want to take advantage of her Hexes, ensuring that your build isn’t focused around the hex will keep you from being disappointed if Survivors cleanse it while giving you as much time to take advantage of the hexes will be your best shot.  

Executioner – B Tier

Whether he’s carving a trail of torment around high traffic areas to break up loops or even impaling Survivors, players have to be fast in order to escape the Executioner’s grasp.

Pick Rate: 2% | Kill Rate: 54%

From the Silent Hill Franchise comes Pyramid Head, whose map manipulation makes him an intriguing Killer to come up against. His power, Rites of Judgement, can create an attack trail that injures survivors on impact and can send them to the Cage of Atonement on the opposite side of the map. This adds some truly terrifying elements to gameplay, especially when Survivors that have been in the cage or have reached the second hook stage can be executed by a mini-mori. 

For Executioner, builds that relate to map monitoring and disrupting Survivor’s are the most beneficial. He already can use his power of map manipulation to block well known routes around the field, such as windows, doors, and generators, but including other perks that will keep Survivors close to you will make it easier for you to hunt them down. For example, Trail of Torment will activate a trail and an undetectable status effect just by damaging a generator. His other perks, Forced Penance and Deathbound focus on punishing altruistic Survivors who take protection hits or heal other Survivors, making it easier for you to break up and target Survivors who are helping their team members. This is particularly helpful when going up against Survivors not playing as group. 

The Dredge – A Tier

“Hello, darkness, my old friend” takes on new meaning when the Dredge enters the trial. Summoning darkness and teleporting between lockers, the Dredge is for sure the monster hiding in the shadows.

Pick Rate: 2% | Kill Rate: 54%

Outside of being outwardly one of the more disturbing-looking killers in Dead By Daylight, the Dredge has some incredible capabilities, namely teleportation between lockers and casting darkness on the map. This gives you the ability to traverse the map while locking Survivors in a tight field of view. This is extremely beneficial during chase sequences, because it makes it near impossible for Survivors to loop effectively. His perk, Dissolution, keeps that energy by dissolving a pallet after an injured Survivor fast vaults it, making the map even harder for Survivors to navigate.

However, the best perk for Dredge is Darkness Revealed, which reveals the auras of all Survivors within range of a locker. This helps it find Survivors while using its power, especially if you’re already using another tracking perk.

Septic Touch is another fun one to add if you’re looking to keep Survivors injured, because they suffer from blindness and exhausted status effects while performing a healing action inside the terror radius. The best part is, those effects last longer if interrupted, which can be helpful with something like Nurse’s Calling for you to sneak up on them. 

The biggest challenge for Dredge is its slower speed while using its special ability and experienced Survivors know how to stay away from its remnants.  

The Artist – A Tier

By enlisting birds to do her bidding, the Artist can track and injure Survivors at a distance, marking them until she has a chance to catch up to you.

Pick Rate: 1% | Kill Rate: 50%

Personally, I find the Artist to be an under utilized Killer. With a power that can launch ranged bird attacks across the map to find and attack Survivors, the Artist can be a challenge to go up against. Birds of Torment can be aimed at Survivors, injuring any in her path and culminating in a swarm that reveals nearby Survivors as well. 

Many Killers use generator regressing builds with Artist as well as Hex totems because of her Hex: Pentimento perk that resurrect cleansed totems. Each rekindled totem also grants the additional effects of negatively impacting Survivor speeds, which is pretty hard to beat from a Hex standpoint. Her other perks, Grim Embrace and Scourge Hook: Pain Resonance, block or regress generators all while either revealing an aura or causing Survivors to scream. All of which slow game play and give the Artist more time to down Survivors. 

The only real downside to the Artist is with her birds flying in a straight line (although a wider line) Survivors still have the ability to avoid the birds during loops or whenever they’re targeted towards generators. 

Oni – A Tier

A massive monster, the Oni is coming for blood — literally. And once he has it, the only thing Survivors can do is try to stay out of his fury radius.

Pick Rate: 3% | Kill Rate: 54%

The hulking demon that is the Oni is a powerhouse Killer to go up against. Although it requires a high amount of practice to learn how to play him, his ability to enter a state of fury and cut down Survivors in his path, immediately putting healthy Survivors into the dying state is brutal. 

Yamaoka’s Wrath activates once the Oni absorbs enough blood orbs left by injured Survivors to fill up the power gauge. For inexperienced Oni killers, this can take a lot of time and finessing, because you have a slower build up to find and injure enough Survivors to collect their blood. Once you do, however, the game changes completely. By initiating blood fury, the Oni gains access to demon dash, which helps him cover large distances rapidly, as well as demon strike, which has an extended lunge range and immediately puts Survivors into the dying state. 

The best builds for Oni are ones that get him to activate Yamaoka’s Wrath as soon as possible. For example, Blood Echo and Nemesis take different approaches to this. Blood Echo gives all injured survivors the hemorrhage and exhaustion status effect after hooking a Survivor, and Nemesis plays around with switching obsessions — revealing their aura and making them suffer from an oblivious effect. This could also look like tracking perks or perks that benefit you during a chase scene, such as Zanshin Tactics, which reveals the auras of walls, pallets and windows, giving you an idea of where Survivors will try to loop you. 

The Spirit – S Tier

Dead by Daylight: Best Spirit Builds
Traversing the physical and ethereal plane, Spirit keeps Survivors guessing about where she’s heading next. Image: Behaviour Interactive via HGG.

Pick Rate: 3% | Kill Rate: 52%

One of the fastest moving Killers in Dead by Daylight, Spirit teleports quickly throughout the map, leaving a disorienting husk that leaves Survivors questioning where she is, making it harder to loop or hide from her. The husk still emits a regular terror radius, which makes it extra tricky for Survivors to play against her. 

The biggest challenge for Killers playing her, is she loses sight of all Survivors in the ethereal plane, relying only on sounds and scratch marks. It changes the way a Killer plays, but once its mastered, makes it much easier for you to down your target.

Due to her power crossing swaths of the map easily, builds that make it easy for her to catch up to Survivors or track them give her an advantage. All of her perks also have the unique position of helping Spirit as Survivors make progress, moving the game closer to end game — where the real fun begins. For example, Rancor reveals all Survivor locations minus the obsession to you each time a generator is completed and when the exit gates open, you have the ability to kill the obsession with your own hand.  Even perks that interrupt Survivors’ loops, like Spirit Fury, which breaks a pallet after it stuns Spirit, can come in really handy when used earlier on in the trial.

We also recommend perks that come into play after the exit gates open that work in tandem with Rancor. That could include other powerful hex totems, as well as Hex: Haunted Ground, which exposes all Survivors after either of the trapped hex totems are blessed or cleansed. 

The Blight – S Tier

A bouncing body full of injections, the Blight uses his environment and speed to chase and down Survivors with ease.

Pick Rate: 5% | Kill Rate: 55%

Blight’s power comes from his unpredictability. His ability to rush at Survivors in bursts of speed and bounce off obstacles in the environment make him near impossible to escape from in chases, especially as he can break pallets of walls too. 

Although he has a steep learning curve, when mastered Blight is a force to be reckoned with. His perks are also incredibly useful. With Hex: Blood Favour, he can block pallets whenever a Survivor loses a health state, which is massively impactful during chases. Hex: Undying is in general a really useful hex, and works well if you have a build that is heavily hex-focused because it transfers the hex of a cleansed totem to the undying totem, which gives you one more opportunity to use whatever hex offerings are tied to it. 

 Dragon’s Grip can also be very useful as it impacts the first Survivor to interact with a damaged generator by revealing their location and exposing them. This would perhaps work best with a Hex: Ruin or another perk about generator regression, because if there’s no penalty for returning to a generator after it’s been damaged, Survivors will simply wait out the time period with Dragon’s Grip. 

All and all, the Blight is extremely powerful on his own, but with his perks, there’s a lot of damage that can be done if Survivors don’t immediately cleanse every single totem. 

The Nurse – S Tier

The most terrifying, powerful Killer of them all, Nurse can teleport throughout the map in way that’s hard for Survivors to figure out. Along with incredible perks, she’s the full package Killer — if you can learn to master her abilities.

Pick Rate: 4% | Kill Rate 53%

Nurse is undeniably the hardest and most powerful Killer to go up against in Dead By Daylight. It takes the most time to master her versatile power, but once you do, a good Nurse is practically unbeatable on the trial grounds. 

Nurse “blinks” up to three times in a row across the map, making it easier to cut off Survivors in different points as well as traverse through walls and pallets. Players can control the length of “blink” (up to a set point), so you can line up exactly to a Survivor and attack in one fluid motion. 

Her perks are also incredibly sought after for many Killer builds, so you know that they’re useful. Particularly, A Nurse’s Calling, which reveals all Survivors healing within a specific range. This keeps Survivors playing injured or risking the chance of being interrupted by a Nurse’s quick teleport. 

Her other perks either help her track Survivors, like Stridor that elevates a Survivor’s breathing and grunts of pain, or increases their discomfort if they refuse to heal. Thanatophobia inflicts a penalty to all Survivors ability to repair, cleanse and sabotage for each injured Survivor in the game. So if Survivors are trying to avoid healing to keep from triggering A Nurse’s Calling, they’re just going to trigger the effects of Thanatophobia. 

Although her perks already make a stacked build, adding in one that focuses on generator regression would balance out to a built that is hard to escape from. 

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That’s it for our Dead by Daylight Top 15 Killer Rankings — thanks for reading! Let us know what your top killer rankings are in the comments, and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more content like this.

Happy gaming!

 

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