The newest Killer coming to Dead by Daylight is Pyramid Head, arriving in the Silent Hill chapter, along with three new Killer perks. I have already analyzed Pyramid Head’s amazing powers, now lets look at his perks: Forced Penance, Trail of Torment, and Deathbound.
Forced Penance inflicts Survivors who take protection hits with the Broken status effect for 20/25/30 seconds. The fact the developers made a perk like this shows that they are paying attention to player interactions in the game. Right now, taking a hit for another Survivor is what most experienced Survivors will do to save each-other. By taking a hit, you waste the Killer’s time with a bloodwipe animation, and create more distance between the Killer and their target. These kinds of protection hits usually take place near the end of the game when the gates are open.
These are not the only kind of protection hits; in fact there are many ways to get them. However, this is the most common scenario right now. Currently, Survivors usually get their protection hits when the Killer is going to hook a Survivor. This is because anyone the Killer hits while carrying a Survivor will have that hit counted as a protection hit too.
It is common for Survivors to bodyblock hooks, so that the Survivor on the Killer’s shoulder can wiggle free. The creation of Forced Penance is so it can be used to counter this type of behavior. Survivors will be less likely to help each other if the danger is too great.
I like how this perk acts as an anti-tunnel perk for Killers. What Forced Penance is saying, is that if you hit a Survivor, that is not the one you were chasing originally, you should switch targets and chase the Survivor who is now Broken. The Broken status effect here acts as an added incentive to make the Killer switch targets. Since it only lasts for 30 seconds though, the only way it is useful is if the Killer switches targets immediately.
This is a good skill for new Killers to learn. I see so many new Killers tunnel the first Survivor they injure. When other Survivors get in their path, the Killer will hit them, but then continue tunneling their original target. This is a terrible habit to have, and can cost Killers the game.
While the design of this perk is amazing, we will have to wait and see if it is useful. Forced Penance will make Survivors less altruistic to each other. Once the Survivors know the Killer has Forced Penance, they will keep their distance. As a result, you will not be applying Broken to many Survivors with this perk, if at all.
However, maybe that is the secret power of this perk: to make Survivors not want to help each other out. They’ll stay out of your way as you try to hunt down that injured Survivor, or while you travel to a hook. Either way, it shows potential for more perks based around protection hits in the future.
Now for the second perk, Trail of Torment: after kicking a generator, you become Undetectable for 15 seconds. During this time, the generator’s yellow aura is revealed to Survivors. This effect can only trigger once every 120/100/80 seconds. While Undetectable is active, your terror radius and red stain is suppressed.
This perk could be useful, but it could do harm to the Killer as well. Here is the thing: it shows all Survivors which generator you kicked. So they will know the general location you are in, and be on high alert if they are in that area. While this perk can excel against less experienced Survivors, it will be impossible to pull off on experienced ones, unless you can apply Blindness.
The Blindness status effect will prevent all aura reading from Survivors, then you will be good to go. You can get Undetectable and they will not know you have it until it is too late. To learn more about Blindness and how to apply it, check out my video below.
Pyramid Head’s final perk, Deathbound, makes any Survivor healing another Survivor for one health state at least 32 meters away from the Killer scream, revealing their location and activating Deathbound for the next 45 seconds. During that time, the affected Survivor will suffer from the Oblivious status effect when further than 16/12/8 meters away from the healed Survivor. This means that they cannot hear the Killer’s terror radius or be affected by terror radius based perks.
This is definitely one of the more complex perks ever introduced to Dead by Daylight. I can see it being used more for its ability to locate Survivors rather than for the Oblivious status effect. I think this perk would be more impressive if it applied Blindness instead of Oblivious.
Survivors always go somewhere they think is safe to heal. So knowing where a pair of Survivors just healed can help Killers keep up pressure during the game. Here is what you should do with Deathbound: go to the healed Survivors’ location, find the Survivor who did the healing, and chase after them. Using this method, you could find Survivors who are usually hiding whenever they hear heartbeat. You could also find Survivors you have not hooked yet, using the injured Survivors you already hooked as bait.
Overall, the perks that Pyramid Head brings to Dead by Daylight have their own unique uses, without any of them buying a huge advantage. So the decision to use them is up to you.
They definitely could be a part of unique Killer builds and fit many playstyles. For example, Trail of Torment would go well with Brutal Strength and/or Pop Goes the Weasel. Each of these perks also do well on their own.
I hope this article gave you some ideas on how to use these new Killer tools. For a deeper look into Pyramid Head, the new perks, and the entire Silent Hill chapter in Dead by Daylight, check out my video below.