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The Disturbing Reason Behind Dead By Daylight's New Update

In a two-part series of developer updates shared by "Dead By Daylight" team Behaviour Interactive (BHVR) on Jan. 3, 2022, players received details about changes being made to matchmaking, perks, add-ons, and more. However, one update revealed a disturbing trend of discrimination among players that Behaviour Interactive aims to shut down.

As fans of "Dead By Daylight" know well, one of the best parts of the asymmetrical multiplayer horror survival game is stepping into the shoes of some of cinema's most famous fictional killers. From Freddy Krueger to Pinhead to Sadako and beyond, there are many horrific avatars for players to choose from. Many enjoy playing "Dead By Daylight" as Leatherface, the ultra-creepy slasher from "The Texas Chain Saw Massacre" best known for wearing his victims' faces as masks. Though Leatherface fans can continue to slice and dice in "Dead By Daylight," BHVR has stepped in with its most recent update to take away a mechanic involving the character's skin masks.

Unfortunately, racism reared its ugly head in the case of Leatherface, which is why the masks had to go. Out of the four original Survivor faces the character can unlock, one character is Korean and another is Black. Leatherface players can unlock wearable "face masks" of these characters by sacrificing them 25 times. This led to some bigoted Leatherface players harassing others, particularly targeting players of color while wearing these masks. As GameRant points out, this means Leatherface is "functionally wearing blackface" while carrying out this harrassment.

Dead By Daylight developers and fans react to Leatherface controversy

BHVR did not mince words in calling out the problem that had developed. As shared in the update, "members of the community have shared their experiences with people targeting and harassing them while using some of these masks."

In addition to "absolutely condemn[ing] this behaviour" and removing the masks so they can no longer be "used as a tool to spread hate," the developer offered 6,000 Iridescent Shards (the in-game currency) to give innocent players a fair exchange for the effort that went in to unlocking Leatherface's former masks. BHVR also promised that it "will not tolerate hateful activity and will continue to take every step necessary to protect the community."

Many "Dead By Daylight" fans on Twitter were thankful for this update. One player wrote, "Thank you for listening to the community." Another gamer also offered thanks and called the removal of the Leatherface masks "a big W for all of us!" Of course, the solution isn't going to end in-game racism or harassment. Some players argued that there can be more done on this front, with one suggesting that BHVR should be "taking action on players or developing a better game[.]"

Though BHVR hasn't provided a perfect solution, it seems the developer is intent on addressing bias and harassment within "Dead By Daylight." And luckily for the nicer players who enjoy Leatherface, the character will be sticking around, albeit with some alterations. And of course, there's always the upcoming "Texas Chain Saw Massacre" video game to keep fans truly excited.