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The Legion Problem

Now that their Archives is out, I feel like there's no better time to talk about one of the biggest and most concerning issues of Dead by Daylight. The massive disconnect between player opinion of power, primarily focused on kills, and balancing around the Emblem system. How DO you balance a killer around that?

And yes, I am 100% aware that this will become a semi-negligible point with the MMR system. Not that we know how it all works.

Oh, Legion. The idea of a spread damage killer seemed to be a natural progression for this game. Chaining injuries together and keeping Survivors occupied with injuries seems like an excellent way to both force Survivors off generators, away from each other and even prevent tunnelling in a way. Not to mention, they're actually pretty fun to play as, or at least I find them to be.

They are also extremely good to rank up with, since Feral Frenzy is a non-lethal power unless Survivors let it be, with built in tracking too! Very fast and multiple hits, starting and "winning" multiple chases, keeping people off generators. Gatekeeper, Malicious and Chaser all LOVE this style of gameplay making the Legion one of the easiest killers to rank up with.

So, what's the problem? Well, there's multiple here. At the cost of having such a non-lethal chase power, that relies on Survivor proximity, you're going to experience two major problems: It's really hard to get downs/kills in some games, and Survivors learnt that splitting up for generators is way more efficient.

Let's start with downs/kills. You're essentially forced to give up having a power in order to down people, and literally become "The Standard Killer" with a lower camera, that comes from your Medium size. You have nothing besides mind-games and Survivors making mistakes. Your average Survivor will eventually make a mistake, but who knows about their teammates? Your power gave you pressure in the form of Deep Wounds, them now being injured and tracking in the form of Killer Instinct. You've lost all that, but you have now hooked a Survivor.

There are also some Survivors who don't care in the slightest if they're injured, because Resilience and Dead Hard are both perks, and perks that require you to remain injured. Feral Frenzy has no effect on players with these perks, other than a mild inconvenience. I don't run these perks myself, but I'll HAPPILY eat a Feral Frenzy stab if it means that you'll run off to hit someone else. Iron Will also negates the fact that you have tracking when their injured, even with a quality headset. Staple Survivor perks completely counter some of the things that make you strong, but some of these perks are actually pretty rare these days.

Survivors have also learnt one crucial detail about generators and the Emblem ranking system. You don't get any bonus emblems for working on generators together and unless someone has Prove Thyself, it's quicker to split up and cover more ground since the killer can only be in one place at a time. And that Emblems are also super easy to get, especially since Benevolence is shared. This has somewhat lead to the infamous "Gen-Rush" meta that some killers have said before, and this is my observation as to why that is. It started with Discordance and Legion.

So, one Survivor gets chased and all 3 of his buddies jump on different generators, since early on we exposed ourselves as the Legion and these guys have a basic understanding of his power. There are now probably 3 people working on separate generators, and we have only hit ONE person with our power. Get the down eventually and 2 generators in different quadrants light up. And now unless you dedicate yourself to setting up a 3-gen, then your power isn't going to help much.

Admittedly Survivors are forced in closer together as more generators get done, but they will still have a large strength advantage with their numbers and relative lack of hooks. You will get your emblems, and if you're at Yellow/Green ranks, you can easily get a double-pip even with only one kill. But who cares about their rank?

It seems like most Killers in this game, and especially on these forums champion the idea that kills make the killer MORE THAN the Emblem system highlights all the parts of being a killer. Is it more satisfying to get kills? Yes. Yes it is. And this is the main problem that comes from Legion. Their statistics in terms of emblem gain and kills are fine, but the community perceive them as quite weak because they aren't very efficient with how they achieve their kills and it's harder to achieve that "all important" 4k result.

With the core design of Legion's power being one of the Divide & Conquer strategy, and keeping people injured or mending promoting massive gains in the Emblem system, as opposed to raw killing power, then there will always be a divide between the community and the balancing team. There is no balancing the Legion in this regard because what the wider community want is not what the Legion provides. They still have a large and loyal fanbase, though, and while I am not strictly one of them, I see the appeal of how the Legion operates and performs in the right hands.

And again, I love playing as the Legion on occasion, but with how the community perceives a Killer's relative power, I don't think that the community (as a whole) will ever be happy with the Legion and that is The Legion Problem.

Make unique killers fun again.


  • MegaWaffleMegaWaffle Member Posts: 4,172

    No TLDR.....


    Fine I'll read it, give me a few minutes....

  • PigMainClaudettePigMainClaudette Member Posts: 3,842
  • MegaWaffleMegaWaffle Member Posts: 4,172

    Can't really argue with how you explained and presented "Legion in a nutshell".

    While I have transitioned to a more gimmick/casual playstyle myself (been around since day 1 release) I understand the mindset of kill ratio = powerful killer. After all you're not much of a "killer" if all you do is stab and run without actually getting kills.

    I also think Legion is pretty fun and his current power would be a nightmare to balance if it gets buffed.

    Now since we are starting to see map sizes get changed to be smaller and infinite's are making a nice exit we may see Legions ability to spread his Feral frenzy become a bit more powerful by default. If this is the case Legion may actually gain the "stall" his power was meant to deliver during a match and this could possibly work to netting him/her more kills on average. I'm doubtful this will be a massive change but maybe it will push them into an actual "killer" and less of the "edgy teens" they are now.

    Either way I'd love to see killers like Legion see some love because regardless of how powerful they may be I find many of the "non-lethal" powers very fun. In fact I think I have way to much fun with Ghostface and his crouch/lean ability, not even for stalking, but to just get jumpscare and funny moments where you peek and vanish.

  • BovinityBovinity Member Posts: 1,522

    Legion can be a ton of fun, but the power ultimately ends up feeling a bit like a pubstomper.

    If a SWF group refuses to separate, or a pug group doesn't "get it", then they get punished extremely hard.

    But if people just separate, or on certain maps, it feels like they're just reduced to being a M1 killer with no real power who will just keep stunning themselves.

    That might also just mean that I need to git gud, though.

  • PigMainClaudettePigMainClaudette Member Posts: 3,842

    Hillbilly - too easy to use for such a strong killer (talking about the average player, obviously.)

    Lots of hate on that one. Lot's of "Buh high level gameplay" when that's not what I was talking about. Basically 1 hour in Hillbilly is worth about 8 in Spirit or 20 in Nurse.

    Clown - strong power, but too easily counterable and lots of drawbacks. Survivors learnt how to beat him, and that was it.

  • PigMainClaudettePigMainClaudette Member Posts: 3,842

    It is strongest in 2 situations: The beginning of the game, when survivors don't know who you are and in a 3-gen. Closed in maps like The Game can help, if you know how to traverse it.

    But, yeah. It's not really an ability you can capitalise on to do well in high ranks that easily. Even still, hitting ONE person and dashing off is still fine, especially if they stop healing eventually.

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