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Wick & Skull Call of Duty & Dead by Daylight candles review - Smelly smells that smell smelly

The unique candles from Wick & Skull are unlike anything else on the market, and the scents certainly reflect that.

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When I was presented with the opportunity to review gaming-related candles from Wick & Skull, I jumped at the chance as I consider myself something of a candle enthusiast. By that, I mean I have far too many candles in my house, use them all regularly, and am constantly buying more even when it’s not necessary.

With my curiosity sufficiently piqued at the concept of “video game candles” I was delighted when I received three Call of Duty candles (Gulag, Warzone Pacific, Nuketown) and one Dead by Daylight candle (The Trapper) to review. Finally, I could light them up and find out what they smell like, and find out I most certainly did.

While I didn’t enjoy all of the ones I received personally — not all of the scents are pleasant in my opinion, and intentionally so in some regards — I nevertheless appreciated the unique idea complementing each one.

For example, the Dead by Daylight candle reads that it “Smells Like: Darkness, Despair, and Horror” and while I’m not sure what those three things are supposed to smell like, I imagine it'd be something mildly unpleasant. The scent of the candle is exactly that for me, mildly unpleasant. At least in comparison to the other candles I received.

The Dead by Daylight candle has a distinct, smokey campfire scent.
The Dead by Daylight candle has a distinct, smokey campfire scent.

The Dead by Daylight candle has a sort of “smokey campfire” vibe to it, which makes sense in connecting it with the game itself, but it comes off a bit too strong for my liking. More specifically, if you’ve ever had a cup of lapsang souchong tea, it reminds me a lot of that, with the tea having a distinct smokey, burning pinewood scent. Unfortunately, the candle takes that same sort of smokey scent and cranks up the intensity, with the end result being a candle that actually made me gag when I smelled it for the first time.

It has great reviews on the Wick & Skull website though, and everything is subjective, so it’s worth keeping in mind that the candle might still appeal to you, even if it doesn’t to me. The Dead by Daylight candle, for me, is less for burning to fill my home with a nice, welcoming fragrance like I do with my other candles, and more as a cool decoration to display with my other gaming-related merchandise.

Setting my dislike of the Dead by Daylight candle aside, of the candles I received, the one with the scent I enjoyed the most was the Call of Duty candle, Gulag. The candle says it smells like “Heated Duels and Second Chances” and again, I’m not sure what these concepts are supposed to smell like, but the candle has a clean, mild men’s cologne type fragrance that I found myself liking quite a bit. In fact, most of the Call of Duty candles have scents that feel reminiscent of men’s cologne with the exception of Nuketown, which also has a smokey smell to it, but not to the extent of the Dead by Daylight candle.

The three Call of Duty candles have softer scents than the Dead by Daylight candles, and are all quite pleasant to burn, Gulag especially.
The three Call of Duty candles have softer scents than the Dead by Daylight candles, and are all quite pleasant to burn, Gulag especially.

Functionality wise, each candle burns for 35 hours and comes in a durable tin with stylish artwork on it representative of the game the candle is based on. Some of the designs are creative, while others are kept a bit more simple and straightforward with the game’s logo by itself.

The Dead by Daylight one is an example of a candle that sticks with the logo, whereas the Nuketown candle for Call of Duty is designed more around the logo for the iconic map and concept as opposed to the Call of Duty logo.

Not all the Wick & Skull candles come in tins, like these Health and Mana Potion candles.
Not all the Wick & Skull candles come in tins, like these Health and Mana Potion candles.

Looking on the Wick & Skull website, there are some other fantastic designs on offer that differ from the tin candles, including ones I’m very tempted to order like the Health and Mana Potion Pack and the Zombie - Double Tap candle. Those ones really stand out when lined up with the tin candles, and I’d honestly love to see more candles designed like the Health and Mana Potion ones. They just look really, really neat.

The selection of candles on the Wick & Skull website is impressive as a whole though, with candles for games like Back 4 Blood and Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, and candles designed around video game concepts like Tea-Bag with a fitting green tea and lemongrass scent to match.

There’s even a Vampire Mommy candle for Resident Evil Village, which is both hilarious and awesome. Humor really helps add to the charm of these candles, with the bottom saying they’re “hand-poured in your mom’s basement” along with options like the aforementioned Tea-Bag that are sure to make any gamer (Halo fans especially) smile.

Wick & Skull has a wide variety of candles on offer, including this hilariously awesome Vampire Mommy candle.
Wick & Skull has a wide variety of candles on offer, including this hilariously awesome Vampire Mommy candle.

The tin candles can feel pricey compared to ones you can get at a place like Bath and Body Works for example, with most of Wick & Skull's options priced at $19.99 (USD) per 6.25oz candle. In terms of shipping, the cheapest option is around $4.98. That said, if you’re stumped on a gift to give the gamer in your life who seemingly has it all, these candles are a novel, one of a kind, item that’s worth a purchase, even at roughly $25 per candle when you factor in the cost of shipping.

In closing, the candles are an intriguing idea and the execution is mostly there, with some mild detractors like intense scents being too much for some (namely, me), and some tin designs feeling more generic than others. Still, there’s nothing else quite like them, and again, who the heck is going to be mad at receiving a Vampire Mommy or Tea-Bag candle as a gift? Not me, that's for sure.


This review is based on three Call of Duty candles (Gulag, Nuketown, Warzone Pacific) and one Dead by Daylight candle sent by Wick & Skull.

Senior Editor

Morgan is a writer from the frozen wastelands of Maine who enjoys metal music, kpop, horror, and indie games. They're also a Tetris fanatic who's fiercely competitive in games like Tetris 99... and all games in general. But mostly Tetris. You can follow Morgan on Twitter @Author_MShaver.

Review for
Wick & Skull
7
Pros
  • Unlike anything else on the market
  • A fun gift idea for the gamer that has everything
  • Some rad as heck candle designs
  • A nice blend of humor and charm
Cons
  • Not all of the scents are pleasant
  • Not all of the tin designs are equally as creative
  • Price can feel a little high
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