A while back I wrote an article about three basic tips every Left 4 Dead 2 player should know. Each of them are easy to understand yet massively increase anyone’s survivability. The tips in this followup article are less mandatory, but still good to know. Either they’re more situational, or there are nuances that make them a little tougher to explain effectively. Nevertheless, if you found the first one helpful, this sequel’s for you!
Tip #1: Stand on map objects when you get the chance.
Imagine a common situation: you’re traveling down the street, when a horde of zombies suddenly arrive from every direction. At this point you should stand on a car, dumpster, or whatever while making your stand. This will force zombies to complete a climbing animation before they can reach you. In addition, Spitter acid will sink right though many map objects (especially fences), and Chargers can’t hurt you at all. If you watch my Last Stand playthrough, you’ll see me slithering constantly over map objects while my friends get bogged down in enemies on the ground.
Tip #2: Always crouch in deep water.
“Deep water” is any flooded location that slows your character down. (Usually rivers and sewers.) You probably already know that crouching improves your accuracy at the cost of speed. Well, these two slowing effects are identical and don’t stack, so there’s no reason not to crouch whenever in deep water. It’s a free accuracy buff during an already-scary situation!
Tip #3: Grabbing a new weapon is faster than reloading.
This is most pertinent when seeing an identical copy of the weapon you already own laying on the ground. “Weapon pickups” in this game are really infinite stacks of that gun, so don’t waste time reloading, just grab a new one. If there’s a horde, consider making your stand next to this weapon drop so you never need to reload, it’s a massive DPS buff. (Though I should note if you have a laser sight, this trick will cause you to drop your upgraded gun.)
Bonus Tip: How to fling gas cans
Many times you’ll find yourself having to carry gas cans/cola six-packs/lawn gnomes etc. These situations are dicey because you can’t use your weapons. An advanced tactic veteran players use is to ‘fling’ these held objects so you don’t need to carry them. Simply angle your vision upwards, left-click and then immediately shove; your character will ‘drop’ the can but then instantly whack it to send it flying through the air. It’ll take some practice, but once you master it you’ll be so much more adept at navigating these scavenge missions.
Hope these tips are helpful! As a final piece of advice, I can think of no better showcase of survivability tactics than Realism Expert Solo runs. The players who run the game without a single support net are the community apex of keeping themselves alive, and you’ll pick up tons of tactics from observing their play. Titsonabullsteam was the player who I first got invested in watching, and I could see my play massively improving after witnessing what he did in crunch situations. Hordes, specials, crescendos, holdouts…these runs are gonna deal with all the same situations you will. Meaning you’ll learn great holdouts spots, grenade tactics, and finale strategies. Plus they’re nail-biting viewing experiences, nothing better than seeing someone reach the getaway helicopter by the skin of their teeth!