Dead by Daylight: How to Counter Tunneling


Recognized by most as a toxic style of play, Dead by Daylight Survivors often fight against Killer Tunnelers. Fortunately, there are ways to counter it.

Dead in broad daylight players have long argued over which role is easier to play. The Slayers say they are at a disadvantage because they have to micromanage the game. Meanwhile, the Survivors complain that the Slayers have too many toxic playstyles to fall back on when things don’t go their way. That debate is ongoing, but there’s one particular method of gameplay that the majority of core Killer and Survivor players seem to agree is toxic: tunneling.

Tunneling is recognized as a style of killer play, where a killer will single out a survivor. The term originally comes from “tunnel-vision”, as a killer tunnel focuses only on one player, ignoring other survivors until that player is out of the game. Although tunneling is sometimes necessary, usually to help the killer deal with a particularly problematic player, it is often misused. Tunneling can be frustrating and sometimes impossible to cope with, especially for new players. Fortunately, there are simple methods to counter it.

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How Daylight Dead Survivors Can Help a Tunneled Teammate

Dead by Daylight Survivors hiding

Survivors often help each other Dead in broad daylight, but it becomes an urgent need for tunnel victims. It’s often hopeless for teammates to organize, especially without the ability to communicate, and counter a killer tunnel. However, it is not impossible. Here are some cool perks Survivors can take advantage of to help a tunnel teammate escape:

Time borrowed: Survivors taken down by a player running Borrowed Time gain the Endurance status effect for 12 seconds. The Endurance status effect essentially gives wounded survivors a second chance, giving them the Deep Wound debuff rather than putting them into the Dying state. Borrowed Time works especially well against Tunnel Killers that hang around the Hooked Survivor. With Borrowed Time, letting the stalled Survivor tank hit first is key to building up speed. Following this, allies can look to block the body or take hits to slow down the killer and buy time for their teammate.

Courage of man: While this perk has seen some nerfs, it’s still a great option for dealing with Tunnel Slayers. After taking a hit with Mettle of Man, survivors gain a token. Once the survivors accumulate three tokens, the perk activates and the next hit that would cause the survivor to go from injured to dying is ignored. Mettle of Man allows to block the body of the killer and take hits for a tunneled teammate.

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Survivor Perks for Tunnel Victims

Dead by Daylight Nea Escapes Hag

In the battle for survival against terrifying monsters, survivors can be equipped with powerful perks that help escape the clutches of killers. Still, some are better than others, especially at fighting tunnels.

Decisive Strike: After being picked up, Decisive Strike will activate. If the Killer picks up a dying Survivor within 60 seconds of falling, the Survivor will be given a Hard Skill Test. Upon succeeding, the Killer drops the Survivor and is stunned, giving the Survivor a chance to escape. Slayers complain about Decisive Strike almost as much as Survivors complain about Tunnelers. However, it is an important and necessary perk to give Survivors a chance against Tunnel Killers.

Unbreakable: Dying Survivors can rise from the ground and recover faster while dying. This perk pairs well with Decisive Strike, as some Slayers will wait for the Decisive Strike timer to expire. A bonus of this perk is its ability to also counter slugging, another killer style of play where the killer will aim to take down all survivors rather than snagging them individually. Despite being situational, Unbreakable is a brilliant perk and makes for some satisfying hero games on the Survivor side.

Soul Guard: Like Unbreakable, Soul Guard allows dying survivors to rise as long as they are cursed by a Hex. However, unlike Unbreakable, Soul Guard grants survivors six seconds of Stamina after being picked up, which works great against Tunnelers. Players can pair this perk with Unbreakable to apply the Stamina status effect to themselves whenever they recover from the Dying state. When ordering both perks, Soul Guard should always come before Unbreakable.

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The main weakness of tunneling

Dead by Daylight Yui

While battling a Tunneler Killer might seem pointless, the playstyle has some pretty devastating downfalls when a team of survivors know what they’re doing. The main weakness of the tunnel is that the killer ignores the generators, which means teammates need to focus on the generators and make the most of the time the tunneled survivor buys for the team. Altruistic Survivors can look to further aid the Tunneled Survivor by taking hits and blocking the Killer’s body, but there should always be at least two Survivors working on Generators.

Despite being frustrating, a group of Survivors can outrun a Tunneler Killer, and there are many advantages Survivors can take before entering a game to increase their chances of success. Yet it can be incredibly infuriating to encounter a killer tunneler, especially for the victim. Until Behavior Interactive introduces a reliable method to deal with tunneling, these are the best options Survivors have to counter a tunnel playstyle.

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