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Best Killers to level first in Dead by Daylight

With so many Killers to choose from in Dead by Daylight, it is tough to know who to level first. Killers are a bit different than Survivors, because each has a unique power along with their perks. Additionally, perks play a much bigger role for Killers. If you do not have access to good perks you will struggle against Survivors. I will go over which Killers you should level first to obtain their helpful unique perks. I will explain how each perk is helpful for various playstyles so you can choose who to level based on your playstyle.  

Leatherface  

Regardless of your playstyle I highly recommend leveling Leatherface first. This is because of his unique perk BBQ and Chili. The teachable version of this perk appears on his Bloodweb at level 35. Here is how it works: 

“After hooking a Survivor, all other Survivors’ auras are revealed to you for 4 seconds when they are further than 40 meters from the hook. Each time that a Survivor is hooked for the first time, gain a 25% stackable bonus to all Bloodpoint gains up to a maximum of 50/75/100%. The bonus Bloodpoints are only awarded post-trial.” 

Earning Bloodpoints on Killer is a lot easier than Survivor. With BBQ and Chili you can start earning the Bloodpoints you need to unlock all the perks you want. Just make sure to hook each Survivor at least once for maximum value.

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Franklin’s Demise is another useful perk since it counters Survivor items the best. The teachable version of Franklin’s Demise appears on Leatherface’s Bloodweb at level 40. Here is how it works: 

Your vicious attacks make Survivors drop their item on impact. While on the ground, it takes up to 150/120/90 seconds for the item to lose all of its charges if it is not picked up. Reveal items on the ground within 32 meters with a white aura. The Aura will slowly fade to red until the Item is empty of charges.” 

With Franklin’s Demise you can force Survivors to drop their pesky items. This will make Survivors waste time later when they go back to look for their item.

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Clown  

This next Killer is good for a chasing playstyle, and generator delay playstyle. His first unique perk is Bamboozle which is a great perk for chase builds. The teachable version of this perk appears on his Bloodweb at level 30. Here is how it works: 

Your vault speed is 5/10/15% faster. Performing a vault action calls upon the Entity to block that vault location for 8/12/16 seconds. Only 1 vault location may be blocked in this way at any time. The vault location is blocked only for Survivors. Does not affect pallets.” 

With Bamboozle you can shut down powerful window loops quickly. This will catch Survivors off guard, especially ones who do not pay attention. I have blocked windows many times, just to see a Survivor run back to that window for a nice surprise. It can also force Survivors to use pallets sooner than they want, taking the pallet out of the game faster.

Bamboozle exceeds especially well in Killer Shack, one of the most powerful looping spots for Survivors.

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The Clown’s next useful perk is Pop Goes the Weasel. The teachable version of this perk appears on his Bloodweb at level 40. Here is how it works: 

After hooking a Survivor, the next generator you damage instantly loses 25% of its progress. Normal generator regression applies after the Damage Generator action. Normal generator regression applies after the Damage Generator action. Pop Goes the Weasel is active for 35/40/45 seconds after the Survivor is hooked. 

Pop Goes the Weasel is one of the top generator delay perks. If you are constantly getting hooks as Killer, it allows you to keep up the pressure. You do need to know which generators the Survivors are trying to complete to use Pop Goes the Weasel effectively, since kicking generators with low progress does not help you much.

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Hillbilly

All of Hillbilly’s perks provide good value for chase and generator delay builds, and one perk is good at countering Survivors with flashlights. His first unique perk is Enduring. The teachable version of this perk appears on his Bloodweb at level 30. Here is how it works: 

“You reduce the duration of pallet stuns by 40/45/50%.” 

Enduring makes stun time incredibly short. This allows you to catch up to Survivors faster when you do not have to break pallets. It also allows you to take advantage of Survivor mistakes. The best way to use Enduring will be with the Spirit’s unique perk Spirit Fury, which I will go over next.

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Lightborn is Hillbilly’s next perk. The teachable version appears on his Bloodweb at level 35. Here is how it works: 

You are immune to Blindness caused by Flashlights, firecrackers, flashbangs, and blast mines. Survivors that attempt blinding you have their aura revealed for 6/8/10 seconds. 

Lightborn allows you to completely ignore Survivors trying to blind you. If you ever see a lot of flashlights in the lobby you can equip Lightborn to mess up their plan.

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Tinkerer is Hillbilly’s next perk. The teachable version of this perk appears on his Blooweb at level 40. Here is how it works: 

“When a generator is repaired to 70% repair progress, it triggers a loud noice notification and you are granted the Undetectable status effect for 12/14/16 seconds.” 

Tinkerer can allow Killers to surprise Survivors who are finishing a generator. Since you never know if a generator will be close or across the map, it is best used on fast Killers. Some examples are Hillbilly, Blight, and Nurse.

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Spirit  

Level up Spirit next if you want to use a chase build, since her perk Spirit Fury is essential. The teachable perk appears on her Bloodweb at level 30. Here is how it works: 

After breaking 4/3/2 pallets, the next time you are stunned by a pallet, the Entity will instantly break the pallet. You still suffer from the stun effect penalty.” 

It is important to know that Spirit Fury on its own does not provide much value, because you will be stunned for too long. Spirit Fury really needs to be combined with Enduring to have value. Enduring with Spirit Fury will catch Survivors off guard, and give them no time to gain distance after throwing a pallet, making your chase much shorter. Just make sure to not break pallets you do not have to if Spirit Fury is activated.

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Michael Myers  

Michael Myers has access to a strong perk for basic attack Killers. That perk is Save the Best for Last, and the teachable perk appears on his Bloodweb at level 30. Here is how it works: 

Earn a token for each successful basic attack that is not dealt to the Obsession. Each token grants a stackable 5% decreased successful basic attack cooldown, you can earn up to 8 tokens. Hitting your Obsession with a basic attack will cause you to lose 4/3/2 tokens. You can no longer gain tokens if your Obsession is sacrificed or killed. 

Save the Best for Last helps you cut down on the time you spend in the blood wipe animation. It is a perk that gets stronger as you keep pressure up in a game. This allows you to snowball to victory as Survivors struggle against your fast recovery speed.

You just need to be mindful of who your Obsession is so you do not lose stacks. It is possible to strategically sacrifice your Obsession when you have high stacks to permanently keep them.

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Plague  

Plague is a good option for a generator delay build and to know where Survivors are. Corrupt Intervention is her first perk, and the teachable perk appears on her Bloodweb at level 30. Here is how it works:  

3 generators located furthest from you are blocked by the Entity for 80/100/120 seconds at the start of the trial. Survivors cannot repair these generators for the duration. Affected generators are highlighted by a white aura. 

Corrupt Intervention is good for delaying generators. It forces Survivors to go to different generators at the start of the game. It also gives you less generators to patrol, allowing you to find Survivors faster.

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Infectious Fright is her next useful perk, and the teachable perk appears on her Bloodweb at level 35. Here is how it works:   

“Any Survivors that are within your Terror Radius while another Survivor is put into the dying state will yell and reveal their location to you for 4/5/6 seconds.” 

Infectious Fright is a powerful perk because it gives you information on Survivor locations. If you see a lot of Survivors nearby, you can slug to try and down them too, or at least get a few of them injured before having to hook the Survivor. If you down a Survivor and see no notifications you know you can hook that Survivor for free.

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Hag 

Hag is another Killer you can level if you want a generator delay build. Her perk Hex: Ruin is powerful at regressing generators if you can keep up pressure. The teachable perk appears on her Bloodweb at level 35. Here is how it works: 

“While a generator is not being repaired by a Survivor, it will immediately and automatically regress  repair progress at 100/150/200% of the normal regression speed.” 

Hex: Ruin does have a high risk factor to it, much like all other Hex perks. This is because you never know when Survivors will find your Hex Totem. If Survivors cannot find it though, then Hex: Ruin will be powerful.

The more pressure you have the stronger Hex: Ruin becomes. As Survivors scramble to save and heal they must choose between doing generators or helping their team. If they help their team then the generators will constantly regress.

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Blight  

The Blight’s perk Hex: Undying is important for protecting Hex Totems. The teachable perk appears on his Bloodweb at level 40. Here is how it works: 

“While Hex: Undying is active, Survivors within 2/3/4 meters of any Dull Totem have their aura revealed. When another Hex Totem is cleansed, that Totem’s Hex transfers to the Hex: Undying Totem, deactivating Hex: Undying. Any tokens the transferred Hex had are transferred as well.” 

Hex: Undying gives your important Hex perks a chance to stay in the game. If the Survivors cleanse Hex: Undying first, then it cannot save one of your Hex perks, but it still wastes the Survivor’s time since they have to search for another Hex Totem. In that way, this perk has fewer downsides than other Hex perks.

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These are the Killers you should level first in Dead by Daylight. With these perks you will be able to make various builds to help you sacrifice Survivors.

Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more Dead by Daylight guides!

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Victoria Crego

Hello, I've been playing Dead by Daylight since July 2016 near when it was released. I've seen, and have been through, the changes made to it throughout the years and have done my best to help other players get introduced to the game. I created a YouTube channel to explain the complicated mechanics in Dead by Daylight, and now I am here as well to continue sharing my information with players like you! Here is my channel for a wealth of information about Dead by Daylight https://www.youtube.com/niva1agaming
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