Even though competitive keep-away isn't really my thing, it's hard not to admire Dead By Daylight from a comfortable distance. The folks at Behaviour Interactive have cooked up over 30 playable killers over the years, some original to the game and many adapted from classic horror media, with distinct abilities and upsetting methods for slaying Survivors. Their latest killer is an unconventional new face: Charles Lee "Chucky" Ray is joining Dead By Daylight.
If I had to guess one legendary horror figure that Dead By Daylight would decide to skip on grounds of practicality, it's Chucky. He is, after all, a human soul trapped in the body of a 2-foot-tall doll. If you know anything about animation rigs in game development, it's not exactly a Ctrl + C, Ctrl + V operation to drop a whole new body type into a multiplayer game.
Behaviour says it did previously believe Chucky's height would "make it impossible to bring him into The Fog, where the Killer gameplay loop revolves around picking up, carrying, and hooking Survivors."
So how do you make Chucky work if he can't even see over the tall grass he's chasing you through? With some clever camera work.
Chucky is the first killer played from the third-person view, allowing the player the same field-of-view as a typical killer while still leveraging Chucky's innate stealth advantage. A necessary move for balance, I imagine, but you could argue you're actually looking through the eyes of Chucky's spirit body following behind him. The ghost helper will stand in for actions unsuitable for a munchkin, like picking up Survivors and hanging them on hooks, with a smooth transition to a first-person view.
But otherwise, Chucky the doll gets the job done all by himself. He chases teens through mansions and tall grass with a sharp knife, sporting a quick charge move and the unique ability to hop over (or simply run straight under) barricades that'd hault other killers.
"Given his size, it’s fair to refer to Chucky as a stealth Killer of sorts, capable of hiding behind even the shortest obstacles in the map," reads Behaviour's announcement.
He's got a filthy mouth, too, supplied with new recordings from Chucky's original voice actor Brad Dourif. Here's a few I heard from just a few minutes of gameplay:
"Got something for you, pisshead!"
"Stop being such a chickensh*t!"
Dead By Daylight killers tend to be the strong silent type, so it's fun to see Behaviour branch out with one of horror's goofier characters.
Chucky is already playable on the Dead By Daylight public test build, and while it'll take some time for the community to shake out his place in the murder meta, the early word is positive, and folks are enjoying how much of a little punk he is. He apparently flips you off in the end-of-match screen, which is rude and undeniably funny.
Chucky arrives properly in Dead By Daylight on November 28.