TIM ABRAMS

Dead By Daylight has taken the world by storm in last few weeks. The game has people running and screaming figuratively… and literally. Dead By Daylight is a horror game with stealth game play that can leave any fan of horror or scary movies with complete satisfaction. Labeled by its creators (Behavior Interactive) as an R-rated Scooby Doo, does Dead By Daylight live up to its hype?

Let me start this by saying, I personally love horror games. Fear and Outlast have become staples in the genre, and rightfully so. One thing that those game lacked, in my opinion, is the feeling of high stress, anxiety, and fear in the multiplayer aspect. Dead By Daylight is another multiplayer only game that has fixed that problem. So far the game has succeeded in making me jump and yelp at many opportune moments.

First, the graphics are great for this type of game. Not striving for ultra realism, but giving the characters, surroundings and the monsters extreme depth is immersive in many ways. Survivors can hide in tall grass, but are still visible to someone with a good eye. Also, after a survivor gets hit by the killer, bleeding and pools of blood can be found in their realistic places.

Survivors are very realistic and practical as well. For example; the characters all have appropriate clothing to resemble them just being grabbed off the street and forced into the killer’s personal playground. One of the four playable characters, Meg Thomas, is dressed in torn jogging gear. Her backstory matches, Meg Thomas is apparently a college dropout who was out for a morning run in a forest when she mysteriously disappeared. All the characters have pretty simple and stereotypical backstories, but for a game with little to no story line, that is no surprise.

Dead By Daylight is a survival horror game about building generators so the team of 4 players can escape the monster that has trapped them in his procedurally generated map. That is pretty much all this game is. Procedural generated maps change the game play a little bit every match, but the game is really one repetitive match after another. One thing that does add a little flare is the difference in monsters that the player can play. Players can choose between three monsters: one based on the Friday the 13th movies, a monster that can turn invisible, and finally a chainsaw maniac loosely based on good old Leatherface. Every character is well balanced, though, which is a great sign that this game was very well tested.

But, even well-tested games have some… issues. One being that there is no group matchmaking, so friends are limited to playing private matches against each other. This is not a huge issue, and is actually not instituted in order to stop cheating, but seems like a weird way to stop such abuse. Another is the fact that the characters are LOUD. I am sure this is another balancing issue, but after a character is hit by the monster, they are abnormally loud. So loud, players could potentially get an edge on other players by having higher quality headphones, thus being able to hear more noises in farther distances. Of course, these things are more opinionated, but still are flaws that many gamers would agree with.

Game play flaws are also a problem. Sometimes the killers can hit through object and obstacles, which can leave the player frustrated. One example is when playing with friends, I was the last survivor left. I was searching for the special escape that only opens when there is one player left. I found it and jumped in, only to have the killer hit me in the last second and kill me. He was able to not only grab me through the escape hatch, but I was invisible to all players and the game was not letting me use any of the movement commands.

 

Buy, Rent or Skip?

Buy it. On steam, the game is only $20, so it’s not like you’re wasting money for just a horror styled multiplayer experience. A story mode would be nice, but many other horror games could also fill that void and do it in a better way. This is another game that shows how the gaming industry is changing. Many publishers, game developers and etc. are making games exclusively for a multiplayer audience. It also is the first of many horror games that will be coming out since 2013,  ever since Outlast paved the way and created this horror format. Dead By Daylight is not groundbreaking but is simple fun for any fan of horror games or scary movies.

 

 

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