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Dishonored Wiki
Shadow Kill's ability icon.

Shadow Kill is a passive supernatural ability in Dishonored 2, Dishonored and its DLCs. It causes Emily Kaldwin, Corvo Attano and Daud to turn characters to ash when slain, eliminating the need to hide bodies.


Shadow kill

Shadow Kill in action.

Tier I - (2 runes (Corvo) / 1 rune (Daud))[]

With Tier I Shadow Kill, any unaware characters turn into ash when killed by Corvo or Daud.

Tier II - (4 runes (Corvo) / 3 runes (Daud))[]

With Tier II Shadow Kill, all of Corvo and Daud's slain enemies turn to ash, whether unaware or alerted to their presence.

Dishonored 2[]

Ability Runes Previous upgrade Description
Shadow Kill 2 N/A Turn unaware enemies to ash as they die.
Greater Shadow Kill 2 Shadow Kill Turn all enemies to ash as they die.
Bloodfly Swarm 3 Greater Shadow Kill Transform enemies killed in combat into bloodflies as they die.

Usage tips[]

  • Shadow Kill does not prevent the kills from counting towards chaos, but does reduce the number of bloodflies and rats encountered in later missions, which depend on the chaos level as well as the body count.
  • If enemies are linked together through Domino, they will also turn to ash even if Shadow Kill is Tier I granted they all die unaware of the protagonist's presence.
  • Shadow Kill is essential for a stealthy high chaos run, as the user does not have to take the time to hide corpses.
  • In Dishonored 2, one must be careful in considering taking this enhancement: it will also vaporize any loot the targets may be carrying. If they also like using the silent Crossbow to kill enemies, bodies that turn to ash typically consume the bolt as well so maintaining bolt ammo reserves could become difficult. It is best to visually inspect enemies first (using the spyglass on faraway enemies) to see if there are any weapons or pouches on their back; if so try to sneak up on them and pickpocket them first before killing them.
  • The Bloodfly Swarm upgrade does not trigger during a stealthy kill, so the other enemies are not attacked by bloodflies.
  • With Tier II of Arcane Bond, summoned Whalers have access to Shadow Kill, acting the same for them as for Daud.
  • If the protagonist has the Leech Cuts or Blood Sacrifice bone charms equipped and has purchased the Bloodfly Swarm upgrade, they can easily regain health while in combat.
    • If they have equipped Spiritual Sacrifice, they can also regain mana. This works especially well with the Void Armor or Witch's Skin bone charms.
  • Enemies tend to prioritise killing bloodflies over attacking the protagonist, providing a useful distraction to either escape or attack more safely.
  • Bloodflies summoned with the Bloodfly Swarm upgrade will not attack the protagonist. If the Bloodflies turn a dead body into a nest however they will attack the protagonist.
  • The bone charm Carrion Killer grants adrenaline for killing bloodflies. This can allow the protagonist to use Blood Thirst more often.
  • Shadow Kill does not activate for Doppelgängers.
  • While most civilians do not attack the protagonist, Shadow Kill works the same, with those who are alerted classifying as in combat, even though they are often fleeing or cowering.
  • Neither unconscious bodies nor most civilians can sufficiently protect themselves against bloodflies. This can lead to unintentional deaths if the protagonist has the Bloodfly Swarm upgrade and engages in combat near either.


  • For unknown reasons Liam Byrne and Paolo are immune to Shadow Kill's effects. This is most likely due to their bodies being required intact for the associated mission objective(s).