How to play as Sadako in Dead by Daylight – strategy and builds

You’ll have less than seven days if you play Sadako right.

Image via Behaviour Interactive

Sadako, from the infamous horror series Ring, has made her way into Entity’s realm in Dead by Daylight. This terrifying woman bent on revenge and cursing those who watch her tape is just as deadly as she was in the films. She’s a unique killer that has plenty up her sleeve to make her a viable killer if played correctly.


Sadako’s power is Deluge of Fear. During the trial, Sadako can go in and out of invisibility through Manifestation. While invisible, she cannot be detected by survivors until she’s within 32 meters of them and she has no terror radius. So, unless one of the survivors has a perk that can detect you even when invisible, such as Premonition or Spine Chill, they won’t know where you are. Use this time to sneak up on survivors for some easy hits.

After manifesting, Sadako will become visible, then invisible, and will finally flicker in out and out between invisibility for a short duration before becoming fully visible. Because of this, survivors won’t be able to get a good read on your location. Use this to your advantage when hiding behind walls or when a survivor looping you. When manifesting, you do lose some speed so you need to make sure you’re close enough to a survivor that you can hit them.

Sadako’s special ability is Projection. Multiple TVs generate on the map that she can teleport between. To use this ability, you need to become invisible and teleport to a TV that you’re looking at. This ability is fantastic for teleporting ahead of survivors while in a chase, especially if they have the Adrenaline perk which gives them a 150% bonus to their speed for five seconds. Aside from chasing, this ability gives Sadako fantastic map pressure since she’s allowed to teleport across the map as long as the TV is on. If a survivor is near you when you project, they will gain Condemnation.

Condemnation is a status effect bar exclusive to those going up against Sadako. After seven charges, the bar will become full and survivors with complete Condemnation can be killed by Sadako, similar to if she was carrying a Mori. Survivors can also gain Condemnation by turning off TVs. In order to lose progress on their Condemnation bar, survivors must take tapes out of TVs and put them in a new TV. The issue with Condemnation is that it’s so easy to get rid of. When a survivor puts a tape into a TV, it will get rid of most, if not all of their Condemnation progress. So, while getting a free Mori on a survivor sounds nice, you should prioritize pressuring survivors.


Image via Behaviour Interactive

You’ll want to have a build that centers around Sadako’s strengths which is her Projection and Manifestation. For add-ons, we recommend that you get Bloody Fingernails which increases her speed after Projection by 50%. Her second add-on should be Well Water. This increased the duration of the Undetectable status by two seconds after manifesting.

Here are the perks we recommend having on Sadako.

  • Call of Brine: One of Sadako’s starting perks. Call of Brine will regress a generator’s progress by 150/175/200% faster than normal. That generator’s aura will then be revealed to you. If a survivor is working on it and they only get a Good Skill check, you’ll be notified.
  • Nurse’s Calling: Sadako will be able to easily sneak up on players who are healing by either teleporting to them by Projection or while she’s invisible.
  • Scourge Hook: Floods of Rage: Another perk that Sadako starts with. At the start of a game, four random hooks are turned into Scourge Hooks. After hooking a survivor on one, the aura of all other survivors is revealed to you for five/six/seven seconds.
  • Thanatophobia: For survivor that is either dying, hooked, or is injured, all survivors will gain a 4/4.5/5% penalty to tasks. This perk is stack-able, maximizing out at 16/18/20% penalty.