On April 2nd, gamers the world over will be able to download and welcome Ashley J. Williams of the Evil Dead franchise to the world of Dead by Daylight.
That’s right friends, the Deadite slayer himself, Ash, will be playable as a survivor in the hit asymmetrical horror game that sees four survivors tasked with escaping the gore-drenched clutches of any one of over a dozen killers.
Behavior Interactive has even gone so far as to cast veteran B-Movie legend Bruce Campbell to reprise the role he swore for the millionth time that he was done with to voice the character. This will immediately set Ash apart from the dozen or so survivors found within the game by making Ash much more of a character than a (mostly) voiceless cypher for the player.
Hell, the trailer announcing the character of Ash is brimming with much more personality and flair than any other trailer seen for this game so far. But at what cost?
The whole goal of Dead by Daylight is to guide a survivor in a hopeless plight against an overpowered killer as they attempt to escape before being offered up as a sacrifice to a god-like and unseen villain known only as the entity. The whole lore of the game is that the killers are meant to basically just bully the survivors until they can be offered up as a snack to a massive spider-god in the sky. The survivors, in turn, are trying to hold out against hope in order to last long enough in a given “match” to escape, unknowingly feeding the entity with their hope, further sustaining it.
This is where Ash breaks this mold. The goal of any survivor is to run and cover and hope that the killer loses their scent, something Ash from Evil Dead would never do. While Ash is truly an acerbic nitwit that doesn’t really want to deal with the threat of over the top monsters (seemingly), he doesn’t run from fights when cornered. No, he dives chainsaw first into the hordes of evil and tells them to fuck off. Something that can’t really happen in Dead by Daylight because technically speaking the survivors are intentionally and woefully under-powered when confronted by a killer, something Ash would never be, or at the very least, he wouldn’t care if he were.
While we can debate whether or not the survivors found within Dead by Daylight are legit under-powered (they’re not, thanks devs) later, it should be noted that Ash doesn’t fit this mold because he just doesn’t give two shits about monsters. An argument could be made for having a young Ash, like the one from the first or second Evil Dead films, but the Ashley J. Williams we’re getting next week is from the hit TV show Ash vs Evil Dead. Not that I’ve seen the show, but every trailer I’ve seen for it shows Ash…well, being Ash and not giving a flying F@$#.
If the developers wanted to include Ash in the game, they should have made Bad Ash a killer-type character and ran with that, but including Ash as a survivor, no matter what the intent was, kind of betrays the Ash character. Ash wouldn’t run from the killers found in DbD (you think Ash would give a shit about Legion running after him)…wait, what if this is an elaborate way of introducing a character that everyone would embrace as the official troll of Dead by Daylight? If you game producer, and seemingly the unofficial spokesman for the game, Mathieu Cote play as a survivor, you’ll quickly notice that he’s kind of terrible at it (as am I, but I forge ahead anyway).
Perhaps the developers over at Behavior Interactive are tired of not having a singular character in which to direct their tea-bagging ways. Perhaps they scoured the world of horror to find the one guy that people would not only accept as a troll…but would embrace him for it.
Ash will be available for Dead by Daylight on April 2nd across all platforms.