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Fresh from Stranger Things and Critical Role, D&D villain Vecna shows his hand in Dead by Daylight

Voiced by Matthew Mercer.

A promo image of Vecna from Dead by Daylight: Dungeons & Dragons.
Image credit: Wizards of the Coast, Behaviour Interactive, 505 Games

Vecna, the iconic Dungeons & Dragons villain who has also appeared in Stranger Things and Critical Role, will be joining the rogue’s gallery of Dead by Daylight’s killers.

Dead by Daylight is a horror-themed multiplayer video game in which players take the role of either a killer or a survivor. As a killer, players will be hunting for the other players in the map in order to sacrifice or kill all of them before they’re able to escape. Each killer character has a unique set of abilities as well as perks that are specifically designed for them. As survivors, players will be trying to find and repair a series of generators spread across the map, before reaching the exit and escaping.

The video game series has seen the inclusion of several iconic horror characters from across the genre: such as Nightmare of Elm Street’s Freddy Krueger and Pyramid Head from the Silent Hill series of video games. Last week, a teaser video was posted on X by the official account for Dead by Daylight in which a beholder - a fan-favourite D&D monster - is shown inside a dungeon prison, with the video ending by promising viewers more information coming.

This week, it was revealed that the Dungeons & Dragons character joining Dead by Daylight’s cast of killers will be Vecna. An iconic character from the tabletop RPG’s history, Vecna’s first appearance in D&D came in the 1976 book Eldritch Wizardry, a supplement which contained two key artefacts: the Hand of Vecna and the Eye of Vecna, the remains of an incredibly powerful undead sorcerer. Since then, Vecna has appeared - fully formed, mind you - in every edition of D&D, eventually becoming a part of the universe’s pantheon.

Vecna was also one of the central villains in actual play series Critical Role, threatening the adventuring party of Campaign 1 - Vox Machina - before eventually being thwarted, with the character becoming a key part of the official D&D sourcebook for Critical Role: Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount. Stranger Things, the sci-fi Netflix show, has featured a version of Vecna in its fourth season: with the character appearing as an undead sorcerer manipulating events from the Upside Down.

A screenshot from the trailer for Dead by Daylight: Dungeons & Dragons.
Image credit: Wizards of the Coast, Behaviour Interactive, 505 Games

Now, Vecna will appear as D&D’s first Dead by Daylight killer in the Dungeons & Dragons pack set to be released for the video game. According to the press release, the character - who is voiced by Critical Role’s very own Dungeon Master, Matthew Mercer - will be shipped with his iconic withered hand in tow, as well as the use of Mage Hand and an arsenal of other powerful spells.

A new survivor character will be released alongside Vecna called Aestri Yazar, a bard who comes with three unique perks: Mirror Illusion, Bardic Inspiration and Still Sight. Bardic Inspiration will see Aestri performing to bolster her fellow survivor’s efforts to repair generators, with players needing to succeed on skill checks to use it correctly.

The Dungeons & Dragons pack for Dead by Daylight - which requires the video game to play - is set to be digitally released on June 3rd.

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Alex Meehan avatar
Alex Meehan: After writing for Kotaku UK, Waypoint and Official Xbox Magazine, Alex became a member of the Dicebreaker editorial family. Having been producing news, features, previews and opinion pieces for Dicebreaker for the past three years, Alex has had plenty of opportunity to indulge in her love of meaty strategy board games and gothic RPGS. Besides writing, Alex appears in Dicebreaker’s D&D actual play series Storybreakers and haunts the occasional stream on the Dicebreaker YouTube channel.
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Dead by Daylight

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