Each playable victim in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre game has unique strengths, and Leland’s is clearly his NFL-level brawn. This build aims to fully maximize Leland’s “Life Saver” ability to save yourself and your friends by being the first line of defense against the family… and to have lots of laughs each time you knock a deviant killer on their haunches.

First Perk: No Sell

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Game

“No Sell” is one of the first perks Leland can unlock and works perfectly with his gameplay. The guaranteed damage reduction makes it much safer to use Leland’s ability. While the limited charges of the perk may make it seem undesirable at first glance, the second and third levels of this perk are powerful. Being able to take up to three hits for relatively no damage has immense value, especially in the starting basement phase when the only risk of damage is from the hard-hitting Leatherface. Use the safety of this perk to take on family members chasing your teammates to deliver a swift sneak attack or life-saving shoulder charge.

Second Perk: Choose Fight

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Game

“Choose Fight” is another perk available early that compliments Leland fantastically in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. The perk is straightforward and makes it so bone scraps are more effective. As the first line of defense, it’s essential that Leland’s attacks hit as hard as possible to give himself and his teammates time to escape. While the perk makes close encounter stuns last longer, it’s primarily taken for its sneak attack value. Close encounters are risky for a victim and should only be taken as a last resort or if you are confident there are no other family members nearby.

Third Perk: Conditioned

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Game

“Conditioned” is a great perk to round out this build with some needed endurance. Once Leland hits a family member with a shank to the back or lays them out with his shoulder, there’s a decent chance that’ll earn the family member’s rageful attention. This is where this perk comes in: run until you can’t and “Conditioned” will help you run some more. It’s a simple perk that works wonders in times of frantic need.

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Perk Locations on Skill Tree

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Game
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Game

Attribute Points

Allocating attribute points is ultimately up to personal discretion, but this build greatly benefits from strength, endurance, and toughness. Taking this route of the skill tree will allow for 28 points total. This point layout leans all the way into Leland’s strengths to allow for some devasting attacks against the family while also offering some self-protection:

+15 Toughness

+8 Endurance

+5 Strength

Ability Upgrades

“Quicker Recharge” is the go-to ability upgrade for this build. A linebacker has to reset and get ready for the next play quickly, so the lower ability cooldown is essential. Once you hit level three with Leland’s ability, you can consider a respec and going for “Concussive Hit” to truly cause some damage.

How to Play Linebacker Leland

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Game

The core gameplay of this build is to engage the family whenever you see a teammate in trouble.


Once you’ve escaped from being tied up, pick up a piece of bone scrap immediately and seek out a teammate. Like a true linebacker, your objective is to play defense by laying out the opposition with a well-timed hit. If you see a teammate being chased by a family member, use the shadows to get behind the pursuer and hit them with a sneak attack. The “Choose Fight” perk will come in handy here and give you and your teammate more time to escape.

If things go sideways in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and you’re spotted before you can get the sneak attack off, use Leland’s ability to stun the family member. It’s essential to go for the sneak attack first as Leland’s ability is effectively a get-out-of-jail-free card and should be used as insurance for riskier plays. “No Sell” will give you even further protection to go for the risky sneak attacks, so you should feel more than comfortable attempting the backstabs when either insurance measure is available.

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Reset & Repeat

Now that you’ve sneak attacked the family member, run for your life! “Conditioned” will help keep you out of their reach. The best escape route will always be jumping down a well if you’re on the surface level as none of the family members can jump down behind you.

When you have a moment or have escaped the chase, collect another bone scrap then rinse and repeat once Leland’s ability is off cooldown. It’s important to play around Leland’s ability; do not take the family head-on without it. You should avoid attempting sneak attacks until the ability is back up as it’s very possible for things to go wrong and wind up in a close encounter, which is a death sentence if any other family members are nearby. The “Quicker Recharge” ability upgrade will help you get back in the action in a timely manner.

Escape Despite Your Weaknesses

The biggest weakness of this build is Leland’s lack of stealth, making unlock tool and bone scrap collection take ages to do silently. It’s ultimately best to accept that it’s going to take a while to gather these, but you can rush through it if you’re bold. Since the unlock tools take a long time for Leland to gather, the optimal escape route is to follow and defend a teammate that can open locks quickly, such as Connie, or to go for a pressure gate or basement exit since these require less lockpicking.

Alternative Perk Options

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre Game

There are a few other perk options in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre that can play into the linebacker build well. All of these perks can be obtained through the same skill tree route as pictured above.

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First and foremost is “Intuition.” This is a starting perk across all victims that reveals the location of where the valve or fuse needs to be placed for escape. I recommend using this perk if you are unfamiliar with the possible spawn locations and want to have a better chance at opening an escape route for yourself. Swap it in for “Conditioned” and keep track of the closest well for an easy escape route as you work to open the pressure gate or basement exit.

The second is “What Doesn’t Kill You.” This is another toughness perk in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre that returns health after a hit after a few seconds of not taking damage. You won’t have immediate tankiness, but the perk isn’t limited by charges. If this sounds preferable to “No Sell,” then go ahead and swap them out.

Finally, there’s “Fish Hooks.” This perk makes it so sneak attacks cripple the target and significantly reduce their stamina for a time. The stamina reduction is brutal against the family and practically guarantees an escape from that member, similar to “Choose Fight.” This is another matter of preference so take whichever sounds more appealing to you.

The Texas Chain Saw Massacre Game is available now on PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Xbox Series S.

Strangely Awesome Games Staff
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