4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 ======================================================================= Left 4 Dead "The Infected Handbook" ======================================================================= Copyright (c) 2009 Eric VanErt (Raistlyn on www.gamefaqs.com) Raistlyn.Eric@gmail.com ======================================================================= ======================================================================= Table of Contents ======================================================================= Update History...................................[L4DUPDATE] About the FAQ....................................[L4DFAQ] About the Author.................................[L4DAUTHOR] The Hunter.......................................[L4DHUNT] The Smoker.......................................[L4DSMOKE] The Boomer.......................... ............[L4DBOOM] The Tank.........................................[L4DTANK] The Witch........................................[L4DWITCH] General Tips.....................................[L4DGENERAL] Other Infected Achievements......................[L4DACHIEVE] No Mercy Overview................................[L4DMERCY] The Apartments...................................[L4DMERCYa] The Subway.......................................[L4DMERCYb] The Sewers.......................................[L4DMERCYc] The Hospital.....................................[L4DMERCYd] Rooftop Finale...................................[L4DMERCYe] Death Toll Overview..............................[L4DTOLL] The Turnpike.....................................[L4DTOLLa] The Drains.......................................[L4DTOLLb] The Church.......................................[L4DTOLLc] The Town.........................................[L4DTOLLd] Boathouse Finale.................................[L4DTOLLe] Dead Air Overview................................[L4DAIR] The Greenhouse...................................[L4DAIRa] The Crane........................................[L4DAIRb] The Construction Site............................[L4DAIRc] The Terminal.....................................[L4DAIRd] Runway Finale....................................[L4DAIRe] Blood Harvest Overview...........................[L4DHARVEST] The Woods........................................[L4DHARVESTa] The Tunnel.......................................[L4DHARVESTb] The Bridge.......................................[L4DHARVESTc] The Train Station................................[L4DHARVESTd] Farmhouse Finale.................................[L4DHARVESTe] Legal Stuff......................................[L4DMYFAQ] Credits..........................................[L4DENDFAQ] ************************************************************** -------Update History------ [L4DUPDATE] ************************************************************** 1.0) FAQ's initial posting. 1.1) 7/8/09 - Minor spelling / grammar corrections throughout the guide. Some additional strategies and corrections to the Dead Air and Blood Harvest campaigns. 1.2) 7/12/09 - More minor spelling / grammar corrections. Several alterations to strategies in the Death Toll, Dead Air, and Blood Harvest campaigns. Added several new tips in the No Mercy campaign. 1.21) Minor update. Granted permission to several other website editors/administrators to post this FAQ. Said websites can be seen in the "Legal Stuff" section of the guide. Thank you for the recognition! ************************************************************** -------About the FAQ------- [L4DFAQ] ************************************************************** So you've gone ahead and entered what many consider to be the most fun part of Left 4 Dead. You've entered Versus mode. And you're here because... Well, let's think through this logically first. 1) You enjoy reading everything that can be read. You're bordering on a mild case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. 2) You'd like to learn some strategies to help you out with your Versus mode career in Left 4 Dead. 3) You clicked on the wrong link, but because you had a feeling about how awesome the author is, you decided to stick around. But seriously now...we both know why you're here, really. 4) You got your ass handed to you gift-wrapped with a "Get Well Soon" card attached to it. You've probably been kicked out of a game or two by angry teammates who thought your I.Q. didn't exceed water's freezing point...in Celsius degrees. (For the record, that's 0) You've been accused of having a "Fail Tank" on numerous occasions. You find yourself rage quitting more often than not. You actually find playing as the survivors more fun than playing as the infected. If #4 was correct in any of those areas, fear not, for there is help. Welcome to "The Infected Handbook." Your one stop source of all information on the zombie side of Left 4 Dead. This guide will cover a wide berth of topics ranging from individual map strategies to tips and tricks for using and exploiting all five of the special infected characters. This guide will help you succeed in stopping the survivors in their tracks. But most importantly, it will help you regain that lost confidence. Help you to become a great team player. And help you discover the potential you have within yourself. This guide was written with YOU in mind, my friend. ************************************************************** -------About the Author------- [L4DAUTHOR] ************************************************************** I'm Eric. I've been a member of GameFAQs since April 30th, 2002. So yeah, I've been around. I picked up Left 4 Dead a few weeks after it was first released, so I've been through plenty of updates. And I know what I'm talking about. I am awesome. You are not. I never wear a cape when I fly. I have at least $30 in my pocket. That's probably more than you have right now. I can lead a horse to water, AND make it drink. I keep telling your mother that she can't have me. She doesn't get it. Sometimes I sleep in your back yard. I give off a constant 1.21 Gigawatts, so if you have a Flux Capacitor and a Delorean, we could time travel. I am no longer in the Mafia. I have played Left 4 Dead more than you have. I invented rubber bands. Your friends will like you 30% more if they find out you know me. But all facts aside, this is my first FAQ. And since Left 4 Dead is still a pretty new game (by this FAQ's initial post), there's bound to be things that I will miss. That being said, if you find anything inaccurate or have additional strategies that aren't too well known, please let me know. I'll post them in the FAQ and give credit where credit is due. My e-mail address is listed at the beginning of this FAQ. That's probably the best way to contact me. Otherwise you could try calling random telephone numbers, but I don't really recommend that. I'm writing this FAQ up to date. If things get patched, I'll change them as soon as I can. There will be nothing in this FAQ talking about how it "used to be." I will diligently alter this FAQ to keep it up to date in accordance to any change that takes place with future patches or download content that makes alterations to VS mode in Left 4 Dead. That's just the way I am. This FAQ also doubles as a "What to expect" guide. Because it points out ambush locations, some of which are less common, it provides sort of a reverse "How To" perspective on the survivor side of Left 4 Dead. Now let's get started, shall we? ************************************************************** -------The Hunter------- [L4DHUNT] ************************************************************** "Cause we hunt you down without mercy! Hunt you down all nightmare long!" - Metallica Hunter Specific Achievements: ***Double Jump*** - Pounce on two survivors in one life as a Hunter. This is a fairly straightforward achievement and can be accomplished in one of two ways. The easiest way is by pouncing on someone, and being shoved off your victim, but not killed - allowing you to run away and pounce again. The other way (and more fun way at that) is by pouncing on someone and outright killing them...THEN pouncing on someone else. To my knowledge there is no way to get yourself off of someone you have pounced before they die. Primary Attack: Pounce Secondary Attack: Claw Swipe Health: 250 When it comes to dishing out damage, the Hunter is the breadwinner in the infected family. A four player infected team will always have at least two Hunters, but on some occasions, a four player infected team can get three, or on even rarer occassions, four Hunters. Hunters are fast, agile, strong, and hard to pick out of a large crowd because of their appearance. The Hunter's main attack is pouncing on survivors. A survivor who has been pounced on by a Hunter cannot defend themselves while being ripped to shreds and needs a teammate to rescue them. Pouncing is done by crouching (default Ctrl key) and left-clicking. To get more distance out of your pounce, make sure to aim slightly upwards for a nice arc. With some practice, you can start landing big pounces with some consistency to really mess up a survivor team. You will get the most distance out of a pounce if you angle yourself upward about 45 degrees. From the various perches you can reach in the game, it takes a bit of practice to know when to time your pounce, what angle your pounce should be at, and how much directional play mid-air you may need to put into your trajectory in order to succeed in landing on a survivor. Unfortunately, there's no real way to try and teach this through a guide. All I can say is practice, practice, practice! You'll get it. It may be best to start off trying for shorter pounces to get a feeling of how the physics engine affects your trajectory and moving up from there. If you can comfortably and consistently land 10-13 damage pounces, try stepping it up a bit. Go for those 15-18 damage leaps. And once you get consistent with those, go for the monster 20+ damage pounces. The damage a pounce does on contact varies from 1 to 25. Yes...25. The BIGGEST factor in determining pounce damage is DISTANCE, not height, and not both. The further your pounce, the more damage you will do on contact. If you pounce straight up from a rooftop and land that pounce on a survivor directly below you, you will only get probably a 3 to 4 damage pounce, however, if you are on a very high perch and pounce straight down to land on a survivor, you may get a large amount of damage on contact. The way it works is kind of screwy and I've yet to figure out how exactly damage is calculated with a pounce straight down, as pounces that have a lot of height may only yield a modest amount of damage the first time, but manage 15+ damage from the same spot the second time. This kind of wishy-washy occurrence may possibly get changed in a future patch, but as of now, go for long pounces instead of high ones for the best results. The Hunter's pounce will interrupt a Smoker's tongue attack while he has a survivor constricted. It is 90% of the time BAD to pounce on a survivor constricted in the Smoker's attack. For a couple of reasons: 1) Now the Smoker has to wait 15 seconds for his tongue attack to recharge, essentially making him useless or a sitting duck for the allotted time. 2) Only 1 survivor ends up being rendered helpless instead of a 2nd survivor coming to the rescue you could have pounced. The only time it's actually beneficial to pounce on a survivor in the middle of a Smoker's attack is if you can get a big damage pounce (we're talking about nothing shy of 15 damage here) when 2 or more survivors come back to help their trapped friend and the Smoker has an easy escape route. You need to make sure you can dish out more damage than that Smoker could have ON CONTACT because now all of the survivors are together, and one of your allies was about to die. Pouncing on the constricted survivor in this (and only this) scenario is beneficial to the Smoker on your team as it can allow him to run away and find cover while his tongue attack recharges and you still dished out more damage than just the tongue attack would have done. Because Hunters rely on the element of surprise, you'll almost always want to spawn in front of the survivor team. There are some occasions where it's helpful to spawn behind them, but get into the habit of setting up for big pounces for when the survivors enter your particular area. There are many areas in most of the chapters of each campaign which can yield big (20+) damage pounces. I will explain and point out those areas in detail later in this FAQ. The Hunter's secondary attack is his normal melee claw swipe. This attack does 6 damage per hit. It doesn't seem like much, as it will take 17 claw swipes to incapacitate a survivor from full health, but realize that if you can dish out over 25 damage as a Hunter in one life, you're doing fine. The Hunter makes no noise when not crouching and only screams when he has a survivor within his sights, so you can silently sneak up on people and get a couple of melee swipes off. If you miss a pounce in the middle of the survivor team, usually it's better to try and get at least one claw swipe off because it will result in more damage than a close range pounce. And you'll more than likely be quickly killed by the survivors. A claw swipe can hit multiple targets - a pounce cannot. There are also a number of areas where survivors commonly huddle up into a corner to hold off a crescendo or finale event. Claw swipes may be more beneficial because of their ability to hit multiple targets. Hunters love stragglers. Hunters also love rushers. If a survivor is alone, target him/her. A successful pounce can result in excess damage as the rest of the survivor team needs to backtrack or catch up to rescue the downed survivor. You may also want to take advantage of making pounces on a survivor in the process of helping up an incapacitated teammate. Regardless of who you pounce, it's beneficial. If you pounce the survivor helping up the teammate, you obviously render two of them helpless, though the downed survivor could easily shoot you off the one you pounced. If you pounce on the incapacitated survivor, you'll reset the revival time by making the rescuing survivor stagger back and hasten the "bleed out" timer for the incapped survivor. Depending on the situation, you can really break the survivors down. Remember that you can always press Tab (by default) to monitor the health of the survivors. Also, if you think a pounce isn't worth it, using your claw swipe on the downed survivor as he/she is being helped up will reset the revival timer. That being said, it's usually in your best interest to focus your attacks on the survivor with the lowest health. Killing the first survivor is always the hardest part, but once you do, the other three go down rather quickly if your team can co-ordinate an ambush. A four player infected team will always have at least 3 people who can render a survivor helpless, so all it takes is a little planning. Ladders are great choke points for Hunters. Not only do they force the survivors to travel in one direction for a short time, but in some cases, a pounce on a climbing survivor can result in tremendous fall damage as you'll send them (and anyone else on the ladder) all the way to the bottom! I will go into greater detail pointing out these locations later in this FAQ. The Boomer is the Hunter's best friend. Because the Boomer's vomit blinds survivors, Hunters love to jump in on the action. A survivor blinded by a Boomer's vomit cannot see the outline of the pinned survivor as he/she is getting ripped to shreds. Simple logic will tell you to go after any survivor who was NOT VOMITED ON by the Boomer. By pouncing on the unaffected survivor, you can potentially dish out tremendous damage as the vomit-dripping zombie magnet survivor(s) will need to not only fight their way through a mob of infected, but also have to locate their teammate. A survivor vomited on by the Boomer will be able to see clearly again about 10 seconds after the vomit first made contact, but the outlines on any pinned survivor will not be visible for a few more seconds, so take that into consideration when it comes to picking your target. It's not uncommon for one of the survivors to run off while their teammates are still technically vomited on, and not see the silhouette of their teammate being torn to shreds until after a decent chunk of damage was inflicted. Hunters can reach places no other infected can. This means very high perches that may not even cross the minds of the survivor team to check before venturing onward. Remember, the element of surprise is a great ally for the Hunter, and if you can find a good ambush location that not only conceals you, but also allows for a massive damage pounce, all the better. Hunters can also wall jump to reach places a single pounce cannot. Aim at a wall, pounce, then while you're in mid air, aim where you want to go, and as soon as you hit the wall, pounce again. With some practice you can reach perches many people never bother to check. And now you can make them pay for it! There will be various locations listed in each chapter of each campaign for you to take advantage of later in this guide. Hunters can also use wall jumps to travel much faster through areas with narrow hallways. The hospital level in the No Mercy campaign is a great place to practice this. Many times you can actually close the distance between you and a survivor taking aim at you by simply jumping from wall to wall and finally landing on one them. It takes a lot of practice, but it's one way to really surprise someone. Wall pounces can also be used vertically to reach extremely high perches. Against a flat surface, face away from the wall, aim straight up and pounce while holding back (default "s" key). While in midair and holding back, angle yourself forward about 10 degrees or so and pounce again. With practice you can string together 5+ of these wall pounces to reach some incredible vantage points - some of which that get completely overlooked by many survivor teams. If you see a survivor pinned by another Hunter and the other survivors aren't in a position to rescue him/her quickly, join in by using claw swipes on the pinned victim. This can cause incapacitation much faster. Just make sure you're aware of your surroundings and can pounce on someone coming to rescue when you get the chance! A Hunter on fire is now a bad thing. In the campaign and survival modes, a flaming Hunter is a force to be reckoned with as they dish out BIG damage in a short time. VS mode...not so much. The damage you do as a Hunter while on fire *is* greater, but it was severely toned down in a patch. Because the damage was reduced by such a large degree, it is generally considered a bad strategy to light yourself on fire before pouncing on a survivor. You can weigh the pros and cons against each other. Pros: + Double damage while pinning a survivor. Cons: - Most survivor players avoid fire and only use molotovs or gas cans when they really need to. - You are losing health, so you are easier to kill. - You are easier to pick out of a large crowd. - You may have to go out of your way to light yourself on fire, then try and catch up to the team. - You probably won't be able to get a big damage pounce while on fire. - You need to immediately attack if you wish to deal ANY damage at all. - This makes you less of a team player because now your teammates must compensate. - Less active infected players hinder the possibility of a devastating ambush. - You cannot wall pounce while on fire. - You run slower. Yeah...do yourself and your team a favor by NOT lighting yourself on fire as a Hunter. If you get lit up by a molotov, then yeah, go ahead and try to dish out a little damage before you burn up. Just don't voluntarily light yourself up. Remember, there is no way to stop, drop, and roll in this game. Happy Hunting! ************************************************************** -------The Smoker------- [L4DSMOKE] ************************************************************** "Got you in a stranglehold baby, you better cross your way!" - Ted Nugent Smoker Specific Achievements: ***Big Drag*** - Drag a survivor 100 feet with your tongue as a Smoker. I actually found this achievement rather difficult to unlock. It's easiest against stragglers. Spawn behind them, and use your tongue attack as they're running away from you, trying to catch up to their team. As long as the targeting reticle is red when you used your tongue attack, it WILL connect unless the survivor goes around a corner. Drag them all the way back to you to get this achievement. ***Chain Smoker*** - Constrict 2 survivors on one life as a Smoker. Fairly easy to unlock. I found the best way to get this is by sticking to rooftops and aiming straight downwards to snare a survivor. Most times, a rescuing survivor will simply melee attack their teammate and break your hold. Wait 15 seconds, and do it again. Primary Attack: Tongue Snare Secondary Attack: Claw Swipe Health: 250 United we stand, divided we fall. The Smoker serves one major purpose in Left 4 Dead. Separate the survivors. Smokers aren't nearly as fast, strong, agile, and quiet as Hunters are. And many would say that the Smoker is largely a situational character. I whole heartedly disagree. A good Smoker player knows when and how to pull a team apart when they're vulnerable making it easier for teammates to orchestrate their attacks. Smokers, along with Boomers are almost necessary to start up an ambush and create a decent distraction. The Smoker's main offensive weapon is his tongue that makes Gene Simmons from KISS look normal. Any survivor constricted by the Smoker's tongue attack is rendered helpless and needs a teammate's assistance in order to get free. This attack does a modest amount of damage while pulling the ensnared survivor towards you, but once your victim reaches you, or gets caught up on something, the damage ramps up a bit. It still doesn't compete with the Hunter's damage output, but it isn't anything to laugh at, either. Because you can drag a survivor towards you, you will ALWAYS want to spawn behind the survivors. Make them backtrack to rescue their buddy. There are many situations where you can severely hinder the team by dragging a survivor over a ledge resulting in an instant incapacitation as they'll be holding on for dear life while a teammate must first break the tongue's hold, then help their friend back up. There are also plenty of locations where you can drag a survivor down to a lower level resulting in a hefty amount of falling damage for your victim. I will go into greater detail in the individual map strategies later on in this FAQ. Aside from dragging survivors into massive amounts of falling damage, Smokers can also drag their prey through hazardous areas and into very dangerous situations. Smokers are great for pulling survivors into alarmed cars which will draw a large mob of zombies to complicate things. Smokers are great for dragging a survivor right next to a Witch which will startle her and cause some serious trouble for the team. Smokers can pull survivors through fire for additional damage. Smokers are excellent at pulling a straggler survivor back to an area the rest of his/her team cannot return to. And Smokers are great for pulling a survivor away from his/her teammates who were vomited on by a Boomer. That being said, Boomers are also good friends with Smokers. The Smoker can yank a survivor away from the team while the rest of the pre occupied survivors lose track of their comrade. So just like the Hunter...if you see the team get puked on, aim for a survivor NOT dripping with stomach acid as it will most likely cause more damage. Unlike Hunters, Smokers are rather loud because of their constant coughing and wheezing. And to make matters worse, as their name implies, they let off a pretty distinct visual cue as well. Green smoke will follow you wherever you go, and it makes you extremely easy to find and hunt down in many of the various environments in the game. To try and combat these downfalls, you need to stay hidden at all costs. Some maps are better than others when it comes to offsetting your visual cue. The Death Toll and Blood Harvest campaigns are great for concealing a Smoker's visual giveaway on the majority of their maps. Smokers are great when attacking from rooftops. If only your tongue gets broken, you have a safe and quick escape route you can run to while you wait for your tongue attack to recharge. Survivors can't see through thick trees, but you can still see their silhouettes, so keep that in mind as you may be able to technically attack from "out in the open" but remain unseen because of the foliage. Just make sure that if you DO attack from behind trees, that you can still find your way to a safe spot as those leaves don't provide any protecting cover from the hail of bullets that will surely be sent flying your way! Smokers also don't run quite as fast as a healthy survivor can, so if you see a survivor coming your way and your tongue attack isn't nearly done recharging, you may as well try and get off a quick claw swipe to do a little damage before the inevitable happens. The Smoker's claw swipe does a measly 4 damage. It will take 25 claw swipes to down a survivor at full health. Yeah...if there's one thing situational about the Smoker, it's when you want to use your secondary attack. Last ditch effort to dish out a little more damage before the inevitable shotgun shell to the face puts you out of your coughing, hacking, wheezing misery...well, at least for a while. The Smoker's tongue has a hidden 50 health. A few shots from a pistol will break your tongue's hold from a survivor. Obviously, being killed will break your hold as well. But a survivor can also be freed from a Smoker's tongue attack if a fellow survivor uses his/her melee attack on the constricted teammate. Fragile enough for you? Well, there's more. If you get attacked by one of YOUR teammates while constricting a survivor, it will break your hold. There is some good that can come from this, however. If you manage to drag a survivor over a ledge so that they must be helped up by another teammate, you can have one of your infected teammates attack you to break your hold and allow you to run for cover. Respawn times are always longer than waiting for your tongue attack to recharge, so it's actually beneficial to you by being attacked when your victim has been dragged into an instant incap. If you miss with your tongue attack, it will take 3 seconds for it to recharge. If you connect with the tongue attack for whatever length of time after the first hit, it will take 15 seconds for it to recharge. So try to make your attack count. It's not really beneficial to dish out 3 damage on a single hit and having to wait 15 seconds because there was another nearby teammate who immediately helped his friend. You should also know that your tongue takes a short time before it actually "connects." The survivor will know he/she is being constricted because of involuntary movement and saliva drops on their screen. During this short time, the survivor can still shoot, and nothing is more frustrating than using your tongue attack on a survivor only to be killed by that same survivor mere milliseconds before your tongue attack actually took hold. Smokers are best at a distance against survivors who are equipped with either of the Shotgun weapons due to their poor long range power and accuracy. However, if you use your tongue attack at point blank range, the survivor will become instantly ensnared. When the Smoker dies, he creates a dark cloud of smoke that obscures the survivors' vision. It doesn't dish out any damage, however, if a normal infected scores a hit while inside the smoke cloud, it counts as an "assist" for you. Try not to be predictable when playing as a Smoker. Many survivors will throw Molotovs at alarmed cars in anticipation of you spawning next to it ready to set it off. Spawn around the corner. Next to a different car. On a rooftop. On a ledge. Then as the survivors run past the car, drag one back. That way you may still activate the car alarm, AND the survivor team used a Molotov for no effect whatsoever. There are many locations in each chapter of each campaign in Left 4 Dead where the Smoker can be a very valuable asset for the infected team by exploiting the environment. I will go into greater detail later on in this guide to point out these areas. Now go and *smoke* your competition! ************************************************************** -------The Boomer------- [L4DBOOM] ************************************************************** "BOOM! Here comes the BOOM! Ready or not!" - P.O.D. Boomer Specific Achievements: ***Barf Bagged*** - Cover all 4 survivors with Boomer Bile at the same time. Pretty straightforward. When all of the survivors are huddled together, go and spray them! I don't believe this achievement works by exploding near them, however. You must cover all of the survivors with puke in the duration of one attack. ***Outbreak*** - Catch a rare strain of infection, then pass it on to someone else. ***How the Outbreak achievement works*** From what I've heard, a Valve employee gave himself this achievement to get it started. It works by being vomited on by a Boomer player who already had the achievement, then when YOU play as a Boomer, vomit on someone who doesn't have the achievement yet. The Outbreak achievement is only available on the PC version of the game. Primary Attack: Projectile Vomit Secondary Attack: Claw Swipe Health: 50 Go and shower your love all over them! The Boomer's purpose in Left 4 Dead is very simple. SLOW THE SURVIVORS DOWN. That's it. Simple logic will tell you that the longer the survivors stay in the field of play, the more likely they are to die. When you vomit on a survivor, it acts like a pheromone drawing zombies-a-plenty to attack the addled person. The Boomer's vomit attack also blinds the victim, gets rid of any silhouette for fellow survivors that could otherwise be seen, and creates a loud eerie music for the affected survivor, thus lowering awareness via audio cue to teammates in trouble. So naturally, when someone gets "boomed" as it's commonly called, the team goes into defense mode. They'll normally stop what they're doing, run towards a corner, toss a molotov or a pipe bomb, or on some rare joyous occasions, start spamming bullets every which way in a futile attempt to dispel a mob of zombies surrounding them that causes more friendly-fire incidents than planned! Slow them down. All it takes is for one survivor to get vomited on to stop the team. If you think that you can wait a bit to cover more of them, DON'T. Boomers are very fragile with an anemic 50 health so waiting around is usually bad. The Boomer constantly gurgles, belches, and makes other noises like he belongs on a side show that even the most twisted person would be hesitant to see. And he makes these noises rather loudly. He's easy to pick out of a crowd because of his obese body, and he moves slowly. So that being said, *AND I WANT TO MAKE THIS PERFECTLY CLEAR*...if you see an opportunity to vomit on a survivor, TAKE IT. It's 99.999% of the time more beneficial to get one survivor instead of risking a wasted life because you *thought* you might have had a better opportunity by waiting. In the vast...and I mean VAST majority of cases, spawn in front of the survivor team. A Boomer playing catch-up is more embarrassing than your mom showing your girlfriend your baby pictures. There are only a slight few situational cases where it's beneficial to spawn behind the survivor team, but those cases are usually few and far between. The Boomer can get the same effect of vomiting on survivors by dying in close proximity to them as well. When the Boomer dies, he...BOOMS...and it can be extremely effective against trigger happy survivor teams. Boomer's aren't necessarily great at dishing out damage, but you will see how many hits your mob of zombies got on whoever you vomited on by a counter. These "assists" can be misleading when it comes to damage output. A normal infected deals 1 to 2 damage per punch, kick, whatever. Yet, I've had assists well over 50 in a short time that have done less than 25 damage it seems. For an incapacitated survivor, being vomited on is a death sentence. Unless at least 1 other survivor is covering, a horde of zombies beating on an incapped survivor will *very* quickly take care of the helpless victim. Don't be surprised if you see an assist over 200 if you vomited on an incapped survivor. The Boomer's vomit attack has a 30 second recharge time. Take that into consideration because you'll most likely get a 20 second spawn time after dying on a 4 player infected team. If you manage to cover a survivor or two with vomit, go ahead and try to run into the fray and explode over more survivors. Chances are you'll respawn faster than your vomit would have taken to recharge, not to mention you'll be able to choose where to spawn instead of trying to catch up to the team and running the risk of dying out in the open. The Boomer's projectile vomit travels in an arc. Aim upwards for a little more distance. Problem is, the range on it isn't exactly fantastic. Odds are you'll die a few seconds after getting your vomit attack off. Boomers can use their vomit attack from rooftops for a surprise, though sometimes it can be a bit of a pain to aim. I've found that jumping down from a rooftop in the middle of the survivor team and vomiting on them is more effective, but if you manage to get 1 or 2 survivors covered with vomit from a rooftop vantage point, more power to ya! I should also mention that the Boomer cannot vomit immediately after spawning. There is a delay of roughly 1 second before you're able to use the vomit attack. Take that into consideration as you won't be able to spawn and puke immediately. However, you can spawn, and then get blown up immediately for the same effect. The Boomer's claw attack is the same as the Smoker's. 4 damage. Not spectacular in any way. It will take 25 claw swipes to down a survivor from full health. The claw swipe comes in handy after vomiting on the survivors and going into try and explode on more of them. You may get 1 or 2 swipes off before dying, and every little bit helps. The Boomer's explosion will not "re-boom" a survivor who was covered with vomit an outline is still purple. You must wait for that survivor's purple silhouette to change back to green, yellow, or red before attempting to splash them again. The Boomer's explosion will stagger back anything around it. Survivors can be knocked back a few steps. If they're close to a ledge, you can actually stagger them over the edge resulting in an instant incap which is needless to say...awesome! However, the Boomer's explosion will also knock Hunters off their pinned victims. If standing next to a Smoker, it will cause him to release his grip on constricted survivor. The Boomer's explosion, however, will NOT knock a survivor off a Smoker's tongue as long as your explosion doesn't rattle the Smoker. It can even stagger back a Tank for a few seconds. So keep that in mind when trying to aide your infected teammates. If you see a survivor pinned by a Hunter or pulled by a Smoker, vomit on the survivor(s) coming to rescue their helpless friend. It's much more difficult to save a teammate when you have to fight your way through a horde of zombies. The Boomer's explosion no longer startles a Witch. So don't try to camp out next to her - you'll be easy pickings! However, the Boomer's explosion still activates car alarms to my knowledge, so go ahead and camp there! The Boomer's explosion also instantly destroys nearby doors, windows, and other breakable obstacles so future hordes will have an easier time reaching the survivors. Boomers team up with every other special infected well, but they really shine with the Tank. During the finales on each of the campaigns, a blinded survivor with a Tank active spells bad news for their team. Communicate with your team to save a Boomer's normal spawn (rather than auto-spawn) on finales for when the Tank is about to show up. It's a great way to really disorientate the survivor team, and if done right, you can end the match right then and there because of the ensuing horde slowing down survivors allowing the Tank to close the gap. It's a deadly strategy. Try it some time! Now go out there and have a BLAST! ************************************************************** -------The Tank------- [L4DTANK] ************************************************************** "Savior to my own. Devil to some. Mankind falls. Something wicked comes!" - Iced Earth You Will Become the Tank! Tank Specific Achievements: ***All 4 Dead*** - Kill all 4 survivors in one life as a Tank. Pretty self explanatory. I found the easiest way to do this is by punching movable objects into them. Another, although much rarer occurrence in unlocking this achievement is hitting multiple survivors into a corner and trapping them there. When they're incapped, move on and get whoever is left. Primary Attack: Punch Secondary Attack: Rock Throw Health: 6000 Like the Incredible Hulk with some steroid-rage turned into a zombie...here comes THE TANK! The Tank is random. Some maps you'll get one, some maps you won't. The ONLY time you are guaranteed a Tank is in the finale of each campaign, in which you'll always get at least 3. A good Tank player can really rip apart a survivor team. Each hit from the Tank does a whopping 24 damage to the survivors, and you have 6000 health to take them out. The problem with this is that you are now the primary target. And a big target, you are. It will take 5 punches to incap a survivor at full health. If a survivor gets punched by a Tank, they get sent flying. On one map in particular, this is extremely devastating to the survivor team as it can result in instant death. Not incapacitation. Death. These particular shots are commonly called "Home Runs," and they are more common than you think on that particular map. I will go into greater detail about these locations later on in this FAQ. If you hear anyone say Bob Uecker's famous Milwaukee Brewers Home Run call "GET UP! GET OUTTA HERE! GONE!!!" you're probably playing in the same game as me. The Tank's biggest enemy is fire. Unlike the regular campaign mode, a Tank lit on fire in VS mode actually moves SLOWER. Not faster. Once you are lit on fire, it starts an invisible 40 second timer. Regardless of how much health you have left, after you've been a-blazin' for 40 seconds, you die. There are a few locations in the game where you can put out the fire, but just as a general rule, avoid fire like the plague if you can. Tanks are far too rare to squander. Sometimes it's inevitable you'll be lit on fire, and sometimes, the game Director will really screw you over by spawning the Tank IN FIRE... Sometimes you just gotta make due with what you have, though. That being said, it's a common survivor strategy to save a molotov for when they hear the Tank's music theme playing. Sometimes a survivor will carry a gas can with him/her for a short while in anticipation of a Tank. The biggest upside for the infected team when it comes to a random Tank spawn in the middle of a map that's not the finale is that he just pops up. There's no listening for the Tank's signature growling beforehand from what I've noticed. If you find out that you're going to become the Tank, get ready to attack the survivors. If you don't, you will lose control of it. A frustration meter appears on the screen indicating when you'll lose control unless you attack. If you DO lose control of the Tank, it will get transferred to another player on your team. If THAT player loses control of the tank, the AI takes over...which is really bad for the infected team as AI Tanks enjoy pummeling only one victim and taking bullet after bullet while it stubbornly tries to kill that single downed survivor rather than going for multiple incapacitations. Tanks love corners and narrow hallways. Reason being is because you have the opportunity of hitting a survivor only a short distance away, closing the gap, and hitting them again before they can even regain control of their character. With adequate team support from a Boomer, you can possibly hit 2 or more survivors into corners and incap them both. The Tank's punch also hits multiple targets, so the more survivors in the corner, the better! The downside to this is that it leaves you no room to avoid bullets. Team co-ordination is extremely important. There's no shame in waiting or possibly even passing the Tank onto another player while waiting for teammates to respawn. The Tank's punch is used for more than just directly attacking. Outlined in red, you'll see various objects on every map that you can use to launch at the survivors. Cars, dumpsters, hay bails, tree trunks, pallet jacks, forklifts, and more. If you punch one of those objects and it collides with a survivor, it's an instant incapacitation. If you manage to smash one of those objects into an incapacitated survivor, it will dish out an extra 100 "bleed-out" damage, so quick kills are attainable if you have good aim and the survivor team has split up. These movable objects can also be used to trap survivors in certain areas making them unable to proceed and become little more than turtles. After a while, the object blocking their path will simply disappear, but it can be extremely helpful in assisting your team. I will go into greater detail later on in the FAQ and point out many of these locations. The Tank's secondary attack is his Rock Throw ability. The Tank rips a chunk of concrete out of the ground (regardless of what surface he's standing on) and chucks it long distances. Each hit from a thrown slab of concrete dishes out 24 damage, but it does not knock back the survivors. It only knocks them down. If you connect with a Rock Throw at a modest distance, you can down that survivor long enough for you to run up and punch them to double up your damage. The Rock Throw attack takes some getting used to. Just like the Hunter's pounce and the Boomer's vomit, you'll want to aim upwards for more distance out of your throw. It takes about a second for the Tank to actually toss the rock but you can still turn in the direction you wish to throw it before the Tank actually launches it. For running survivors, aim slightly in front of them for the best result. The Rock Throw actually manages some surprising range. It's not uncommon for a Tank player to just sit back and start chucking concrete at the survivors while waiting for his infected teammates to respawn. Whether or not you connect with these tosses doesn't really make a difference at this point as a lot of survivor players tend to use a weapon with the greatest accuracy and stand still to shoot at you. You can take a pretty hefty amount of damage, so if you're a good distance away, try a few shots at them while your teammates respawn. Then you can go in and attack in unison. The Tank's default running speed is SLOWER than a survivor over 40 health. Like any infected, concentrate on the weakest survivor first. If you are lit on fire, you can still run faster than a survivor under 40 health, but it is a severe problem for you. Don't go chasing around a particular survivor if they're all healthy. Remember, the Tank is priority #1 when it comes to the survivor team. You'll have to rely on your teammates to distract and give you an opportunity to go in and punch if you're dealing with a team of four healthy survivors. If you need teammates to respawn and you're NOT on fire, there's no shame in running away to wait for them. Besides, running away may give you some good practice with the Rock Throw ability. The Tank's punch one-hit-kills Hunters, Boomers, Smokers, and Witches. DON'T PUNCH THEM! This includes Hunters and Smokers who have a survivor in their grasp. It will kill YOUR teammate and allow the survivor to live. Bad idea. You don't have to be a "gentle giant" when playing as the Tank, but do keep aware of your teammates and their locations. It's generally the best strategy when playing as the Tank to only go for incapacitations. Incap one survivor, then move on to the next. Remember, a survivor doesn't have to be killed to be useless to his/her team. 4 incapacitations = over. Now go out there and fight nice! ************************************************************** -------The Witch------- [L4DWITCH] ************************************************************** "Now listen up! She's razor sharp. If she don't get her way. She'll slice you apart!" - Motley Crue There are no Witch specific achievements on the infected side of Left 4 Dead. The Witch isn't actually a playable infected character in Left 4 Dead. However, that doesn't mean you can't take advantage of opportunities that present themselves when a Witch DOES appear. Like the Tank, Witches are random. Some maps you'll get one. Some maps you won't. But UNLIKE the Tank, you are never guaranteed a Witch spawn. I've played several VS matches in which no Witch spawned through all 5 maps. If the Witch hits a survivor, they are instantly incapacitated. Then she starts to shred them relentlessly at a rate of about 50 damage per second. (So with a bleed-out health max at 300, it takes about 6 seconds for the Witch to finish what the survivor started...) The Witch can be startled in several ways by survivors. 1) She can be startled by being shot. 2) She can be startled by being hit with a melee attack. 3) She can be startled by simply looking at her for too long. 4) She can be startled by a flashlight shined on her too long. 5) She can be startled by staying close to her for too long. 6) Molotov Cocktails get her angry. 7) Pipe Bombs too... 1) Being Shot If nobody on the survivor team is comfortable with "Cr0wning" the Witch (One hit killing with a head shot from a Shotgun type weapon), a common strategy is to have one person shoot her and then run away. The Witch will only go after the person who startled her. This strategy is called "pulling" and it can be extremely frustrating for the infected team as it can result in a safe neutralizing of the Witch and thus not allowing you and your team to take advantage of her spawn. You can try to combat this by employing the following strategy, though with some stipulations. + Have a Hunter crouch in front of her. If the survivors are still using "tier 1" weapons (Normal Shotgun and Uzi) accuracy becomes an issue. Every gun has a piercing quality to it, meaning bullets will travel through their first target and hit whatever was behind them. If the survivors are taking aim at you, they'll most likely startle the Witch, and then have a whole new problem to deal with. If they DO startle the Witch in this sense, odds are they'll stop attacking you. This can allow you to attack in unison with the Witch and cause some havoc. If the survivors are using "tier 2" weapons (Auto-Shotgun, Assault Rifle, Hunting Rifle) beware of that dastardly Hunting Rifle. It's accuracy is unmatched, it dishes out tremendous damage, and it can ruin the whole strategy. Be aware of which weapons the survivors are using. If you notice a Hunting rifle, don't bother with this tactic. If a "pull" is successful, fear not for there is still a slight glimmer of hope. Remember when I said that Boomers should always spawn in front of the survivors? Well, this is one of those rare situational cases where it's beneficial to spawn behind them. If someone pulls the Witch and then starts running away, vomit on them! When the survivors have to fight their way through a mob of zombies with a Witch on one of their tails, it's not pretty...well, for them at least. + Everybody loves a failed "Cr0wn." 90% of the time, a failed Cr0wn results in an incap for the survivors when using the Auto-Shotgun. And 100% of the time, a failed Cr0wn results in an incap when using the normal Shotgun (Unless assisted by teammates. Then that 100% drops to about 95%). If you see a failed Cr0wn, pounce, drag, or vomit on any of the other survivors as soon as possible. The Witch will deal with the one who disturbed her, and if you can hinder the other 3 survivors, it can get messy for them. Remember, an incapped survivor is only able to use pistols at about 1/2 normal firing speed. Witches usually work quickly enough to take a big chunk of bleed-out health away if not outright kill them. Stray bullets can be amazing when it comes to Witches. Because most survivor teams like to plan what they're going to do with a Witch that's in their way, pulling the Witch with a stray bullet completely interrupts their train of thought. While you, on the infected side of things, can't really co-ordinate a plan with your teammates in only a matter of a second or so, do realize that this presents an amazing opportunity for a solo attack on your part if you're a Hunter or Smoker. Find out who the Witch is going after and pounce or pull him/her. Slow that person down just enough for the Witch to catch up and incap. 2) Being Hit with a Melee Attack It doesn't happen often, but usually when it does, it's because of someone randomly spamming melee attacks while blinded by a Boomer's vomit. Because there's a horde of zombies already around, it makes things pretty nasty for the survivor team. This is where the whole "pounce or drag whoever wasn't vomited on" tactic comes into play. 3) Looking at Her for too Long The Witch doesn't like people who stare. This doesn't happen very often, but for people who take too long lining up a shot trying to Cr0wn her, or weren't aware of her presence for whatever reason, she'll swat them down quickly. This usually happens with one survivor, and the rest have either moved on, or are hanging back. If you're a Boomer and you see someone staring at the Witch lining up that perfect Cr0wn shot, vomit on him/her! Mob of zombies + Witch + can't see where you're going/aiming = OUCH! 4) Shining a Flashlight on Her You'd be surprised how many people forget to turn their flashlights off around the Witch. It's hard for you to tell when you're playing as the infected, but if you hear the Witch getting angry and the survivors are a little ways away from her, assume it's the flashlight. Some people don't even realize that their flashlight is on. This is the other rare occasion where if you're playing as a Boomer, spawn behind the team. This works almost identically to "pulling" the Witch. 5) Staying Close to Her for too Long Witches really don't like survivors being close to them for any length of time. If you're playing as a Smoker, and a Witch is a little out of the way of the survivor team's path to the safe house, try dragging one of them right next to the Witch. It will startle her, AND usually it won't break your hold. So you'll take the survivor down even faster as there's the constricting damage from you, and the shredding damage from the Witch working together. Survivors don't have to be directly looking at her for the Witch to be startled. Just being in close proximity to her is enough to get her growling, then screaming, then attacking. Boomers...take advantage of this. Tight corridors and narrow hallway areas are the ideal scenarios for this. It works the best if the Witch spawns in a room off to the side, such as one of the many in The Hospital level in No Mercy. The Witch *can* be startled even if a wall separates her from the survivors, so keep that in mind as well. 6) Molotov Cocktails really Burn Her Up Like the Tank, setting a Witch on fire starts an invisible timer. Only for the Witch...it's 15 seconds. Not 40. The Witch runs slower when on fire, and it's a common strategy for survivor teams to light her up from a vantage point if she's on a lower level. There really isn't much you can do to combat this. However, I rarely see people lighting up Witches with Molotovs. You have to weigh the pros and cons against each other here. Witches can be avoided, they can be dealt with in other ways that don't waste a valuable throwing weapon, and it generally slows the team down by lighting her on fire. Truth be told, lighting the Witch on fire from a distance is generally the best way to take care of her, believe it or not, as any other special infected around her may also get lit up while thinking of ambushing them by the Witch. Use the Tab key (by default) to monitor what items the survivors have in their possession. If you see Molotovs, think twice about employing that tactic in #1 in this section. The reason many people don't use Molotovs on the Witch is because it takes longer. That's it. Even though it *is* usually safer. 7) Pipe Bombs Have a Larger Blast Radius Than You Think It's a common survivor strategy to toss a pipe bomb to draw out any and all normal infected before attempting to Cr0wn a Witch. However, if that Pipe Bomb blows up in close proximity to the Witch, she WILL be startled, even if she wasn't actually in the blast. I've done a bit of research testing the range of a pipe bomb's explosion. If a Smoker's tongue at max range over a flat surface is 100 feet (as indicated in the 'Big Drag' achievement) then a pipe bomb's damage radius is roughly 20 feet. If you hear the pipe bomb's distinctive beeping, and it's kind of close to that Witch, get ready to attack because she's not going to like what's about to happen! These poorly thrown pipe bombs are few and far between, but they're a nice treat for you and your team when they happen. ************************************************************** -------General Tips------- [L4DI] ************************************************************** There are certain things in Left 4 Dead that apply no matter which infected character you're playing as. These boil down to common sense in most cases, but some rely on backwards logic as well. 1) NEVER assume anything. The person who acts predictably usually ends up dead. This applies to both the survivors AND the infected. Stay hidden. If you're going to spawn as a Smoker or Boomer, don't spawn until you're ready to attack. Their audio cues are loud, the Smoker has a visual cue, and people can find you more easily - resulting in you dying more easily. If you plan on attacking from a common ambush location, save your spawn until you're ready to make your move. Never assume that the survivor team will panic if things start to get chaotic either through a random horde, or one summoned by a Boomer's vomit. Not every survivor hit by a Boomer's puke is going to start spamming bullets every which way. They may not act irrationally once a Tank comes into their line of sight. Just make sure you're ready to attack once you see one of the survivors slip up. 2) Support your teammates! Attacking solo, unless you know you can get some good damage out of it, is bad. Always try to attack in unison with your teammates. Sometimes your infected team will have three Hunters and a Smoker. This means that all four of you can each take a victim and stop the survivors right then and there with a well co-ordinated attack. 3 Hunters and a Smoker is commonly called a "3-1" though I prefer to name it a "Death Squad." It just sounds cooler! 3) Common sense will tell you that nothing can come out of an empty room. Be uncommon. If a survivor checks a room, then abruptly leaves, spawn in that room and attack them from it. This works great as any type of infected, but is usually the best with Hunters and Smokers. Boomers may be too fragile to risk playing catch-up in wide open areas. 4) Communication is key! Plan your attacks, and tell everyone what you're doing. Using a microphone is best, unless the "all talk" feature is on for that particular server. Speaking is generally always better than typing, but even if "all talk" is enabled, you can chat with only your team by typing. Make sure everyone knows what you're doing, and offer suggestions to your teammates so that they may compliment your own attack. 5) Use the environment to your advantage. Ledges, rooftops, narrow corridors, mezzanines, bridges, etc can all be used to the infected teams' benefit. Use the distractions from Crescendo Events whenever you can to dish out some extra damage, but make sure you can attack again immediately after the survivor team starts to move on. Time your attacks well, and you can keep the pressure on them. 6) Go after the weakest person. Incapaciting a survivor will slow the rest of them down for 5 precious seconds. This can give your teammates a chance to respawn, or move into position for a better attack. And be sure to stay after that weakest person. Remember, a survivor can only be revived from an incap twice before "going black and white." When a survivor is seeing black and white, they must be healed in order to stay alive after their health reaches 0 again. They're also moving slower because the health they receive after being incapped is only 30, and it's bleed-out health, so it's slowly dropping. Remember, the hardest part of stopping the survivors is getting that first kill. Once you do that, it makes your task exponentially easier. A black and white survivor at 1 health is still able to spam bullets from their Auto- Shotgun. An incapped survivor has horrible aim, two pistols, and can only fire at about 50% normal speed at best. And a dead "survivor" can't do a darn thing! 7) Look at what the survivors have coming up. Once you die and are waiting to respawn, press the SPACE bar (by default) until you enter spectator mode. This will allow you to zoom around the map and notify your teammates about what the survivors have around the next corner as far as goodies go, and it can help you in locating a nearby Witch for your team to take advantage of. 8) Grind the survivors down whenever you get the chance. There are various areas where you can keep the survivor team occupied for much longer than they want to be. Some of these locations are at a safe room's exit at the beginning of the level. Remember, if the survivors haven't left the safe room yet, you will instantly respawn after dying. With constant hordes from fast-spawning Boomers, and repeated claw swipes from Hunters and Smokers, you'd be surprised how much damage you can do right out of the chute! I will go into detail to point out the common "grind" locations in the individual map strategies. 9) High ground is an advantage. Really...it is! It provides additional distance for Hunters. It usually provides more cover for Smokers. And an uncommon attack angle for Boomers. Thing is, most people (and by 'most' I mean the vast majority) when entering a new area have a tendency to check left to right before they check up and down. Unless you have to attack from ground level, ALWAYS try to stick to the high road. ************************************************************** -------Other Infected Achievements------- [L4DACHIEVE] ************************************************************** Since the character-specific achievements were listed in the individual character description sections, this part of the guide will deal with the other achievements that are part of the zombie side of Left 4 Dead. ***Dead Wrecking*** - Dole out 5000 total survivor damage as a special infected. This achievement is pretty self-explanatory. Just keep playing VS mode and keep dishing out damage to the survivors. You'll get it eventually. The fastest way to get this achievement is by hitting movable objects into the survivors when playing as a Tank. It dishes out tremendous damage! ***Lamb 2 Slaughter*** - As an infected, incap a survivor who has entered and left a safe room. Again, pretty self explanatory. This is most easily done by having a survivor get incapped near the safe room door and as one of his/her teammates comes to the rescue, incap THAT survivor. The rescuing survivor, as one would expect will need to be near death (probably having no more than 30 health) before leaving the safe room and attempting to revive his/her teammate. Like most of the other specific infected achievements, this one relies a lot on the opposing team making mistakes. It can be pretty hit-or-miss achieving Lamb 2 Slaughter as you'd be surprised at how many people would rather let their teammate die mere inches from the safe room door! ************************************************************** -------No Mercy Overview------- [L4DMERCY] ************************************************************** No Mercy is one of the most often played VS maps in Left 4 Dead. It's a very well balanced campaign for VS mode, there aren't many 'broken' areas for either side, and it has the most popular finale event of all 4 campaigns. No Mercy starts out where the intro movie of Left 4 Dead ended. The survivors start on the rooftop of an apartment building, and their ultimate goal is to reach the rooftop of Mercy Hospital so that a News Station Helicopter can rescue them. For the infected, No Mercy has proven to be a favorite because of it's many locations for big damage pounces from Hunters, areas with fall damage and instant incap locations for Smokers, plenty of angles Boomers can attack from, and lots of movable objects for Tanks. No Mercy has three major Crescendo Events apart from the finale, though one of them is quite frustrating for infected players and has been called to be patched several times over to no avail as of yet. None of the Crescendo Events, however, can be rushed through by the survivors. Each one forces the team to wait a short time and fight through a mob of zombies. The most notable location No Mercy has been altered to offer balance between the two sides in VS mode is the rooftop in the finale. The campaign mode offers a sheltered area with 2 doors connecting a stairway on the platform that has the minigun. The VS mode alteration is one door leading to an outdoor staircase behind the minigun. This makes it more accessible for Boomers, Smokers, Hunters, and Tanks alike. And seeing as how many survivor teams camp out on top of that platform, the change is a welcome one for the infected. Aside from the Hospital map in No Mercy, it's a pretty dark campaign. It takes place at nighttime, during a rain shower. Because of a generally dark background, Hunters can find it easier to perch high up without putting out an easily spotted silhouette against the backgrounds. Smokers, however, have a lack of thick foliage to hide behind, and the green smoke they give off doesn't blend well with ANY environment in No Mercy. There are, however, many rooftops in the first and third maps of No Mercy that offer adequate cover and escape routes for Smokers to take advantage of. No Mercy is also the home of one of the most survivor embarrassing, although rare and difficult to pull off, moments for Smokers to take advantage of. ************************************************************** -------The Apartments------- [L4DMERCYa] ************************************************************** Right from the get-go, the survivor team must make a decision. There are 2 ways they can enter the apartment building. Through the door, or through the skylight. Many teams prefer to just enter through the door, but... *SMOKER TIP* *HUNTER TIP* For both Smokers and Hunters, there is a building to the right of where the survivors start off. It's a great place to spawn, as you can just jump onto the building the survivors started on if needs be. If the survivors choose to take the skylight entrance, spawn immediately and try dragging or pouncing on any straggler left on the rooftop. This will force the rest of the team to backtrack to rescue their friend while you dish out more damage immediately. If you're the Smoker, you can stay on the rooftop you spawned on and retreat back if your tongue is broken. Hunters here can manage pounces of over 12 damage quite easily with a little practice. Any additional shredding is just gravy after that. It's not uncommon for Hunters to incapacitate a survivor on the rooftop if a well co-ordinated Boomer attack like the one below occurs. *BOOMER TIP* Regardless of which entrance the survivors take into the apartment building, a great Boomer location is behind the breakable wall just past the kitchen area. You can break the wall with one melee swipe, then vomit over as many survivors as you can. If a survivor gets pulled or pounced on the roof, causing a horde to immediately follow the rescuing survivor(s) can really slow down things and result in massive damage to one of them. As the survivors make their way down another level, there are many rooms that can contain goodies such as molotovs, pipe bombs, pain pills, med kits, or a 2nd pistol. Remember you can always hit the Tab key (by default) to monitor which survivors are carrying items. The survivors will eventually reach a hole in the floor that will put them on ground level. *SMOKER TIP* A straggler here can spell a kill for the infected team. After 3 survivors jump down the hole, try and pull the last one back to complicate things. Make sure you're back far enough to stay out of the way of other survivors jumping and spraying a few bullets your way. I believe that the survivors can also shoot through the floor, but a lot of them don't and figure their teammate is a goner, so they move on. Getting a kill is always satisfying! If there is a Hunter nearby, have him pounce on the survivor you pulled as he'll make the kill much faster, and it allows you to disrupt and pull apart the team later on in the level. *HUNTER TIP* As the survivors leave the apartment building on ground level, it opens up a LOT of opportunities for big damage pounces (20+ damage on contact). One of the best locations to land one of these monsters is as the survivors just peek through the doorway leading to the alleyway. The building you spawned on at the beginning is where you will want to set up. There is also an outside zig-zag staircase across the alleyway that you can pounce onto, and you can get a 20+ damage pounce from there as well. The problem is that you spend more time in the air coming at the survivors, and are therefore you're easier to pick out of the sky before you land. Best to pounce from the rooftop. You can still land a 25 damage pounce from there rather easily with the right aim. *BOOMER TIP* This is one of those rare occasions where it's wise to spawn behind the survivor team. Many survivor players are hesitant to head outside fearing an ambush, so they bide their time a little too long. Long enough for you to close the gap and vomit on at least one of them! That'll teach them to wait! *TANK TIP* While getting a Tank on this level is rare, it DOES happen. If a Tank spawns when the survivors aren't far away from the exit of that apartment building, a common strategy is to run back inside. There are a few cars that you can punch in that alley and if you hit them just right, you can actually block the exit to the apartment building, trapping the survivors in there for a while! Now that the survivors are temporarily trapped, your teammates can start grinding down the survivors little by little until the car blocking the doorway disappears. You can also climb up the building and come in from behind the survivors by making your way down the same path the survivors took for a surprise! There are many rooftops along the alleyway that Smokers just love as it allows for a quick escape route should their tongues be broken. All throughout the alleyway until the survivors reach the street, Hunters can land big pounces. Boomers can vomit from the rooftops as well, and then jump in after they vomit to try and cover more of them. *HUNTER TIP* It takes a rather long time to set up and getting the correct timing and aim can be difficult, but the angle from which you pounce is unexpected, it's a guaranteed 25 damage pounce if you land it. From the building the survivors started on, across from the door leading down into the apartment building, you can see a tall zig-zag staircase across the street. Pounce onto that staircase and take it to the top. From up here, you have amazing range on your pounces. If you angle your pounce correctly, you can land on a survivors as they're crammed in the alley between the two buildings. There are obstacles (like other zig- zag staircases) that you will need to be sure you don't land on, but if you land a pounce here, it's 25 damage guaranteed. Otherwise, you could wait until the survivors reach the street and go for a pounce as they round the corner. It may be slightly less damage, but that's nothing to pass up. Like I said earlier, though, this location takes a bit of time to get set up at because you are forced to spawn, then pounce, then take the staircase up about 6 levels. Make sure you're going to be able to set up before the survivors reach your ambush location. Once the survivors reach the street, there are three ways they can go. The most common way is to enter the building immediately to their right and head into a small room containing a first aid box. The only special infected that is useful here is the Boomer as it can slow the team down and maybe dish out a little bit of damage. From inside that building, the survivors have a good view of the street and the alarmed car. If they picked up a molotov cocktail earlier in the level, a common survivor strategy is to launch the molotov at the car from inside the building. At that distance, it doesn't active the car alarm, and if a Smoker was hiding behind it, he'll be dead. So if you're a Smoker...WAIT to spawn behind that car if you can. Or spawn around the corner. You can also enter the building immediately to your right (facing the building the survivors are in) of that car and camp out in there until the flames die down, or the survivors look vulnerable. *HUNTER TIP* You can climb up the building the survivors are camping out in. On top of the roof, you can pounce up to a higher level, and then if you pounce at the roof to the right of you, you can walk along an invisible wall. Turn around and wait for the survivors to leave the building. You can land a pounce ranging from 18 to 25 damage from there. You can also sit on the building the survivors are in to pounce them as they're about to enter the subway. I prefer the former as it's less expected and is more likely to succeed. The second way the survivors can go is by staying on the street and just rushing through without entering the building. This leaves them open to big damage pounces the entire time. *HUNTER TIP* By the flaming oil tanker, you can use wall pounces to reach the roof of that building and walk along an invisible wall. From there, you can position yourself on one of the white outcroppings for a good vantage point with lots of range and no obstructions in your way. The third and least common way the survivors can go is by staying far to the left after leaving the alleyway and taking the back path. It leads to a wide open area, which Boomers aren't particularly fond of, and there aren't many spots a Hunter or Smoker can effectively attack from. This is actually the safest route to take, but it's passed up by many players because it takes longer. The building they enter at the end of the open area may have some goodies for the survivors to pick up, and it can really disorientate an infected team setting up for the survivors to enter the building or staying on the street. *BOOMER TIP* If you're the Boomer and you haven't spawned, find which way the survivors are going first. If they take that back path, spawn in the building they're heading to and try vomiting on them. This may open up an opportunity for the Hunters and Smoker on your team to attack. *HUNTER TIP* If the survivors take that longer left-side path, once they leave that building, they'll be in a wider open area. There is a telephone pole that you can wall pounce up on top of. It takes a bit of practice to get into position, but a lot of survivor teams for whatever reason tend not to check up there. Seems they're more concerned with an attack from behind, or from directly above them after leaving the building. Regardless of which path the survivors take, they must pass an alarmed car on their way to the subway. It's common strategy for the survivors to launch a molotov at the car from a distance so they won't set the alarm off. Spawn further away from the car if you're the Smoker and after the flames die down, try pulling one into the car. The horde that comes from the car alarm is rather large, and the ensuing chaos opens a bit of opportunity for every infected player. *TANK TIP* Again, getting a Tank on this level is quite rare, but it DOES happen from time to time. Just like the strategy of knocking a car up the alleyway to block the exit to the apartment building, you can trap the survivors in the field of play for a short time if you can manage to punch the alarmed car down the stairs leading to the subway, thus blocking their path. Punching the alarmed car (and any alarmed car for that matter) will permanently disable the alarm, just so you know. But if you can trap the survivors on the streets, you make it easier for your infected teammates to grind them down through attrition. The car WILL disappear after a while, so make sure you know when it does. Be prepared to be called a "noob, hacker, idiot" or any number of racial slurs should you trap the survivors. You can just laugh at them. Down the stairs to the safe room allows for one last ditch effort ambush from behind the boxes. If the survivors made it this far, odds are they'll make it to the safe room. All you can really do at this point is try and dish out a little more damage to lower their score. ************************************************************** -------The Subway------- [L4DMERCYb] ************************************************************** Immediately after exiting the safe room, an ambush should take place! *SMOKER TIP* Immediately to the left of the safe room is a climbable pipe leading to a platform you can spawn on. The window of opportunity you have here is rather small, but if you can manage to hold up the survivor team for a few precious seconds, you allow the Hunters on your team to move in and dish out some damage. *BOOMER TIP* There are 2 locations a Boomer should spawn at the beginning of this map. The first location is below the safe room in the area with the pillars. Vomit on them as soon as they drop so that your teammates can jump into the chaos. The other location is at the top of the escalators in the middle of the two paths. The survivors can choose to either go down the stairs, or drop through a vent to enter from the other side. Spawning in the middle of those two paths allows you to puke on them no matter which route they take. If your teammates attacked immediately as the survivors left the safe room, vomiting on the survivors here should slow the survivors down long enough for your teammates to respawn. I prefer the latter strategy, myself. *HUNTER TIP* Spawn beneath the safe room in the area with the pillars. Regardless of whether or not the Boomer on your team spawns alongside you, it's possible to dish out a little damage right from the get-go. If the Boomer on your team tried the 2nd strategy listed above, you *should* be able to respawn in time to attack them again before they even reach the escalators. Down the escalators, the survivors will enter a more open room with a few booths that can contain medpacks, pills, molotovs, or pipe bombs. There is also a table next to the booth on the left that sometimes contains the "tier 2" weapons. Because most of this map is cramped, don't count on anyone grabbing the Hunting Rifle. This map is much longer than the first map in No Mercy, and a gun rack is available after the crescendo event should any of them wish to switch. Keep that in mind as you may need to adjust your strategy. There are two ways the survivors can head up to the actual subway, though most teams choose to head to the right and go through the subway car as it provides shelter from Hunters. *HUNTER TIP* If the survivors DO head into the subway car, you can actually stay outside, jump, and claw at them for some pot shots. If you crouch after each swipe, you force the survivors to fire blindly through the doors. If you can manage 3 or more claw swipes, great! My personal best here is 7 against a particularly inept team before I pounced one of them after they finally got fed up and exited the car. Regardless of which path the survivors take, they must pass by an open fire. *SMOKER TIP* There is a hole in the wall that 99% of survivor teams never enter across from the fire pit. You can pull survivors into the fire with your tongue for extra damage. The tunnel to the right of the main path provides a nice place to spawn as most survivor teams just ignore it. It bypasses a train car that can contain goodies, and a table that may contain an extra pistol, tier 2 weapons, or both. Use this to your advantage as you can have a troublesome time spawning while the survivors are between the subway cars. The survivor team will have to enter a string of subway cars before reaching a room with a little more breathing room. There is a table here that may contain tier 2 weapons, and the room across from the table often contains molotovs, pipe bombs, and a health pack. *TANK TIP* In conjunction with a Boomer's horde, the subway car provides an excellent choke point. If your infected teammates can block the survivor's path from the rear while you close in from the front, you may be able to bottleneck them and score several hits resulting in incapacitations. The survivors must head up a staircase and enter an area usually filled with plenty of infected. It's rather difficult to attack the survivors at this point as they'll toss a pipe bomb to make their lives easier while they all hang back in the hallway above the stairs. When they enter that room, the pillars provide plenty of cover to hide and spawn behind, and Hunters can co-ordinate a decent ambush with no real rhyme or reason to it. You'll want to save your Smoker here, however. *SMOKER TIP* After the survivors head up another staircase past the room with the pillars, there is a room off to the side that contains a first aid box. However, there is also a hole in the floor that you can use to drag one of them down to you, forcing them to make the trip all over again. If no survivor comes down to escort their teammate back to the rest of the party, it opens up... *HUNTER TIP* ...a GREAT opportunity to dish out some serious damage as the survivor on his/her own tries to re-unite with the team. Land a pounce away from the others' line of sight - and therefore line of fire -, and you'll force the survivors to backtrack. This room is home to the first of three major Crescendo Events in No Mercy. The Generator Room switch must be activated in order for the survivors to progress. This process takes roughly 90 seconds, and forces the survivors to fight off a horde...and your infected team. The place most survivor teams use to stake out is the corner underneath the walkway to the right of the mounted machine gun. There are usually a couple of gas cans that they'll ignite at a safe distance and take care of the horde. The tables at the entrance of the room usually contain a generous amount of molotov cocktails, and you can bet that at least one of those will also be thrown after the fire from the gas cans goes away. This section of the map can be rather frustrating for the infected team, as all of the survivors are tightly packed together and spamming their melee attacks that will disrupt a Smoker's tongue attack. *SMOKER TIP* Sometimes, you can get your tongue attack to work and pull a survivor through the fire the survivors will undoubtedly have blazing for some extra damage. Don't count on this always working, and if your tongue attack gets disrupted, hide behind one of the generators until it recharges. After the event, the survivors will head up a staircase and enter a room that will contain tier 2 weapons and ammo. They will also pass by another gas can which many survivor teams will ignite by the door to buy themselves time from spawned infected players. *SMOKER TIP* There are gaps in the railing from the walkway above. You can drag one of the survivors down and slow the team down a little bit here. It won't cause much (if any) fall damage, but any Hunters on your team can take advantage of the survivor once your tongue hold is broken. The many rooms on this upper level past the generator room often contain plenty of goodies. Molotovs, pipe bombs, med packs, and pills commonly spawn here. And the survivors usually are pretty tightly bunched here. However...there are some areas you can use safely to attack. *BOOMER TIP* From out on the street, your vomit can hit survivors who stray too close to the windows. *SMOKER TIP* From on the street, you can drag a survivor out of the windows causing some fall damage and opening up opportunities for the Hunters on your team to attack. The survivors can leave this building in one of three ways. 1) The back alleyway. Actually the safest way they can take, and not the longest. There is a pipe that Hunters can climb up and pounce from for big pounces here, however. 2) The front door. The longest route, and it puts them on the street with plenty of cars for... *TANK TIP* Yeah...plenty of cars. Pound away. Just make sure not to punch the alarmed car near the safe room. The common survivor strategy is to just run back inside the building they came from. A Boomer here to slow them down is extremely helpful as odds are you'll be set on fire. This level of No Mercy is particularly generous when it comes to providing the survivors with molotovs. 3) Out the windows. Either from the front or in that back alleyway. Survivor teams that jump out the windows cut down on your reaction time, and are generally the fastest route to the safe room just down the street. Eventually, the survivors will have to pass through a wide open area that provides LOTS of places for Hunters to land huge pounces. There is also an alarmed car that Smokers can take advantage of, unless a stray bullet sets it off. Boomers can spawn in one of the rooms inside the building the safe room is in for a last ditch effort in slow the team down long enough for teammates to get a last attack in, but if they make it this far, all you can hope for now is a little more damage to lower their score. ************************************************************** -------The Sewer------- [L4DMERCYc] ************************************************************** Right from the get-go, you can ambush the survivors. *BOOMER TIP* If you exit the safe room spawn point and run to the left, you'll see a pole that you can climb up. This will put you directly on top of the survivors, and you'll be able to spawn immediately after they leave the room. The common survivor strategy here is to run straight ahead to get shelter from other attacks, but you should still be able to vomit on at least one of them as they leave the safe room. *SMOKER TIP* From the safe room spawn point, run to the left, and you'll see a climbable pipe leading to a low roof, and another climb point onto Burger Tank's roof. Turn to face the safe room, and you'll see a zig- zag staircase on the opposite side of the alleyway. You can jump onto this staircase, take it to the top, and get a great vantage point directly across from the safe room exit. If you can manage to get your attack off and hold one of the survivors in place, you open up an opportunity for... *HUNTER TIP* ...a Hunter on your team to make a huge pounce. Hunters can take the same spawn path the Smoker took, but stop on the roof of Burger Tank. You can arc a pounce over the roof the Boomer spawned on in this strategy - just to the right of the staircase the Smoker used to get to his spawn location. My personal best pounce here was 22 damage. Not a bad start for 2 feet out of the safe room! If you can land anything over 18 damage, kudos to you! Most survivor teams, immediately out of the safe room will take the straight path into a storage room. There are usually goodies in there for them, and it provides a little shelter from Hunters and Smokers. If you are a Boomer, try to keep them in there for as long as possible. Amidst the chaos from the ensuing horde, Hunters can manage some melee swipes. It's rather dark in there for the Survivors, so you have that going for you as well. I wouldn't recommend pouncing them in this area, as the silhouettes from a pounced victim are still clearly visible. On the other side of that storage room, there is a garage that can contain pills, med packs, molotovs, pipe bombs, and tier 2 weapons. The survivors must now trek down a long and narrow alleyway with tall buildings lining either side...it's a Hunter's paradise. *HUNTER TIP* There are 2 air conditioning units you can use for a hiding spot and good pounce location as the survivors leave the garage. You can also set up on the roof above the moving truck and cable spools. Both of these locations offer a good opportunity for 25 damage pounces. If you fail to land a pounce, and can recover, you can wall jump back to safety and try again. *BOOMER TIP* There are rooftops you can jump down from after you try vomiting on the survivors as they pass through the narrow alleyway. *TANK TIP* Sometimes, you'll get a Tank on this map right away. There are a couple of cars you can use to bash into the survivors, and there are plenty of dumpsters to smash around. The narrow alleyways allow for hordes of zombies summoned by the Boomer on your team to block the survivors' paths and give you a good chance of catching up to them. Odds are the survivors will only have tier 1 weapons here, also...so you can take advantage of their (moderately) low damage output. Remember, if you need to, you can always run away to let your teammates respawn. No sense in going it solo if you don't think you'll do a good job. The survivors must make a left turn and head down yet another narrow alleyway that offers many of the same perks for the infected team that the first one did, though it is much shorter. The survivors will then enter the kitchen area of Burger Tank. Here, they may find all sorts of goodies, but many survivor teams are iffy about charging out into the wide open area here first...and for good reason. *HUNTER TIP* Directly across from Burger Tank's entrance is a building you can climb to the top of. It offers an excellent vantage point of the area, and as they're leaving the restaurant, you can land a 25 damage pounce from there. A Smoker who can pull one of the survivors back from the rooftop of that diner can provide an easy target, and you will dish out more damage than the Smoker could have on his own. Since the survivors are generally all grouped together here, it's actually beneficial to the Smoker on your team as you'll allow him to not only run away and let his tongue attack recharge, but he can set up for another ambush location immediately. The most common action the survivors take once in this area is to blow up the gas station. It looks awesome, and it provides an easier route to a building that can contain goodies and tier 2 weapons. It's a rather common stop for the survivor team on their way through the map, and it opens up a good opportunity for the infected team to separate and tear down the survivors. *SMOKER TIP* Did a Hunter interrupt your tongue attack at Burger Tank's entrance? Well, you can run back into the alleyway and head down by that truck with the cable spools by it. Try dragging any survivor that wanders too close to the windows and you can pull them all the way back to you, forcing them to remake the trip...and what a trip it is. So much so, that if no other survivor comes to escort the pulled victim back to the rest of the party, a Hunter on your team can land a pounce and possibly get an incapacitation. That building isn't necessary to visit, but many teams do, and as they go to activate the scissor lift, they make themselves vulnerable to big pounces from Hunters. *HUNTER TIP* You can get on top of the building the survivors visited. There is a water tower on top of that building you can pounce on and it offers a spectacular view of the area. It provides some cover, I haven't noticed too many survivor teams checking that area, and the distance you can get out of your pounces is amazing. You can reach the barrel that's on fire, EASILY. The scissor lift is the 2nd major Crescendo Event in No Mercy. On top of summoning a horde, the survivors must traverse very treacherous terrain...an awning overlooking the truck depot below. It's a common survivor strategy to start the lift, and then huddle into the nearby corner behind it. If the team does that, it makes attacking them more difficult, but it also keeps them in the field of play longer. The horde that gets summoned by the event is rather large, and has 2 main waves. A Boomers can drop down in front of them to try and get a vomit attack off, but sometimes you'll end up just jumping into a line of bullets and accomplish nothing. If a Boomer DOES get his vomit attack off, the Hunters on your team can try to get an extra claw swipe or two off before their vision returns to normal. If you DO plan on attacking this way as a Hunter, make sure it's immediately after the Boomer's attack. If the survivors decide to make a run for it, you'll have a spawn time in front of you... *SMOKER TIP* Drag them off the awning. They won't grab hold of the edge...they'll drop all the way down and most likely take a hefty chunk (25+) of fall damage. If the survivor team decided to rush past the event, not only do you drag one of them down, but then the horde will likely swarm in to assist you with your pull. Incapacitations here are perfect targets for Hunters to land big pounces on any survivor coming to the rescue. *HUNTER TIP* As the survivors either ride the lift up or climb the ladder to the awning, you can land HUGE pounces from the roof of that building. There are two raised sections of that roof that can provide a little more distance - and therefore damage - for your pounce. Across the awning, the survivors will enter a storage room with a hole in the floor. If you're a Smoker, try and drag that last survivor back as they fall through the hole to the level below. It can really dish out some damage or even score a kill. If the survivor team decided to rush past the event, odds are they'll camp out in one of the closets in that building after dropping down through the hole in the floor. There isn't really a whole lot you can do here to attack them. Hunters can *try* to get a quick swipe off, but I find it a waste. However, if a survivor ventures too close to the windows, a Smoker can pull them down to the level below. Nearby for the survivors is a switch to the metal dock door on the level below, so it may not be a huge inconvenience...but it's still an inconvenience. Otherwise...sometimes you'll get lucky with a survivor team who all rush down to help, forcing them to remake the trip across the awning. That's always fun! There is a first aid box that will contain pills or med packs, and there is an ammo pile in that room just past the hole in the floor. The first aid box I never understood as there are several rooms down that long hallway that more often than not contain plenty more health packs, pills, molotovs, and pipe bombs. The survivors can jump down into the large storage room from the windows, or backtrack and take the stairs down. Either way, survivor separation in this area can be very hurtful to their team. *TANK TIP* Sometimes a Tank will spawn here. There is a forklift and pallet jack you can use to bash into the survivors. Pallet jacks are actually pretty light when compared to the force of a Tank's punch, and they'll go flying every which way, rather than in a straight line. Stick with the forklift. Odds are one (if not all four) of the survivors will have a molotov at this point. Try to get as much damage done as you can, and remember, if you need to wait for your teammates to spawn before starting your attack, then wait. Doesn't make much sense to go solo and get torn down immediately. Boomers summoning hordes here can be fatal for the survivor team if a Tank is present. After the large storage room, the survivors enter a narrow outdoor area before entering the sewers. *HUNTER TIP* It won't land a huge amount of damage on the survivors, but I bet it will make them jump! You can actually perch on the edge of the roof adjacent from the roof with the awning from earlier in the map. This perch is directly across from where the survivors enter the narrow outdoor section, and I have *never* been shot at from suspecting survivors in this location. Don't go for huge pounces here as one of those infamous red "out of bounds" barriers will appear in midair and halt your pounce. You can, however, leap downwards from that ledge at about a 15 degree angle to land a 12-14 damage pounce and probably scare the crap out of one of them! The survivors will enter a sheltered narrow hallway and then descend a staircase into the sewer section of the map. There are two entrances to the sewers. The shorter path is directly across from the stairwell. There aren't usually any items near that entrance for the survivors to collect, so many teams opt to enter the alcove to the right of the stairwell's exit. There are 9 times out of 10 goodies here for the survivors to stock up on. *SMOKER TIP* There is plenty of cover here for you to take advantage of. And regardless of which sewer entrance the survivors decide to delve into, your goal is the same. Snag the last one to try jumping down. The survivors canNOT shoot through this floor, and it is essentially an instant kill for you! To combat this, many survivor teams will toss a molotov at the entrance of the alcove from the right entrance, and in the middle of the septic tanks if taking the straight entrance. Either way, your tongue is long enough to go over the fire and land a hit, dragging one of them back. Good luck! Down in the sewers, the survivors will generally stick to the wider open paths. Usually there is an ammo cache down here, and sometimes goodies will be in supply in a few of the rooms off to the side. Thing is...most survivor teams just try to get through the sewers as fast as possible since it's close to the end of the map. *TANK TIP* If a Tank spawns in the sewers, molotovs are of no concern to you! This is one of only a few locations in the entire game where you can put out the fire should you be lit up. Simply run through the sewer water. That's it. *HUNTER TIP* The exit from the sewers is one of the most infamous Hunter pounce locations in the entire game. And rightfully so. A successful pounce as the survivor is still climbing the ladder will for him/her and any other survivor all the way back down the ladder, dishing out some fall damage as well. If you manage to pounce a single survivor all the way down, the fall damage alone is enough to incapacitate him/her. There are several locations from which you can safely land a pounce. 1) From the car near the building behind the ladder at the sewer's exit, you can pounce onto the metal staircase, then from there, pounce on top of the building. This can net you a 20 damage pounce on contact, plus fall damage, plus shredding damage. If you can pull this off, it's lethal. 2) From on top of the bus stop shelter. Not nearly as damaging, but the pounce is more accurate. 3) From the ground. Go for the quick one. Be wary though, as many survivor teams will launch a molotov up the chute to try and foil the infected plan by hitting any infected player caught napping. A successful ambush here is critical to your success as the end of the map is mere seconds away. *SMOKER TIP* There are two popular locations to help ambush the survivors as they emerge from the sewers. 1) From behind the bus stop. The common strategy is for the Smoker to drag the first one, then the Hunters can fight over who pounces first, and so on. 2) From BELOW. Yes... Save your spawn until after the survivors start climbing the ladder, then look straight up, snag one, and drag em' down! *TANK TIP* If the AI Director is feeling particularly nasty, it may spawn a Tank in this location. If that's the case, there are plenty of cars and dumpsters to smack the survivors' way and cause some instant incapacitations. If a Tank does spawn, communicate with your teammates to ambush them at the entrance of the hospital. Because this spawn location is so close to the end of the level, the survivors may try to make a run for it. Make sure your teammates are ready if the survivors try that. The ambulance at the entrance of the hospital often contains a health pack, and there are several rooms just before the safe room that can contain goodies. If a stupid survivor who goes venturing into one of these rooms, make him/her pay for not just finishing the level as soon as possible. The Sewers map of No Mercy is a long one...no need to make it any longer than it has to be. If the survivors make it to the entrance of the hospital, odds are they'll make it to the safe room. Just try to dish out a little more damage here to lower their score if you can. ************************************************************** -------The Hospital------- [L4DMERCYd] ************************************************************** The fourth map in No Mercy plays much differently than the previous three. There is a lot more cover for Boomers throughout the majority of the level, and while the survivors can shoot through the walls in many areas of the map, I found that because this level is rather lengthy, most survivor teams tend to - for lack of a better word - rush through the first 70% of the map. There are NO locations on this map for big Hunter pounces. However, with all of the side rooms, and many hallways, getting separated on this map can mean only being on the other side of a wall, and can result in some extra damage. Immediately out of the chute, the survivors will more than likely rush to the right after leaving the safe room. There is a T junction on this level. Boomers can set up there to try and slow the team down. It's pretty common for the Smoker to set up from behind the curtains left of the safe room's exit to drag one back, but the damage won't be great, and you have no hiding spot to run to. Best to save the Smoker until after they reach the mezzanine. *HUNTER TIP* You can't get much done at the beginning of the map. However, you can help to slow the survivors down by indirectly attacking them. After the first section of the spiral staircase, there is an open area. The mezzanine here has railings that can be broken with 9 claw swipes. Try to get at least one of them destroyed - preferably the railing closest to the next section of the spiral staircase. The large open area has two entrances the survivors can come in from. Directly underneath the railings you can attack, and from the middle of the room, through the kitchen entrance. If they come through the former, you can land a 10 to 13 damage pounce here if you've got good aim. Sometimes, a Boomer's vomit at the very beginning will cause a horde to take care of those railings for you. It wouldn't be a bad idea to double check. This mezzanine section is an ideal place to keep the survivors in one spot for a prolonged period of time. The longer they stay in the field of play, the more damage they'll take. *HUNTER TIP* Just before the staircase leading to the mezzanine, there is a skylight dripping water. You can actually pounce straight up through the skylight and land on an invisible ceiling. There are a couple of white vents you can pounce onto. Stand on the front left corner, and aim your pounce at the widest section between the bars. The survivors MUST pass by here to proceed, and I've never been attacked by a suspecting human player. Bots may react differently. The pounce probably won't exceed 6 to 7 damage, but it's nice when you can pull it off as it forces everyone to jump and react to something immediately and cause some chaos. The survivors must cross the mezzanine, and this is where a well co- ordinated infected attack can spell disaster for them. Keeping them in this area for 45 seconds is great. A minute is spectacular. Two minutes basically guarantees at least one death amongst them, and a loss of several, if not all of their med packs. *SMOKER TIP* Pull a straggling survivor (or ANY survivor) down from that level. You will more than likely be hunted down and killed, so if only your tongue gets broken, go in with claw swipes for a little extra damage. Get something else out of it before you meet your maker. Pulling one down will force them to run back to the stairs and remake the trip. It doesn't cause any fall damage, but it's a big inconvenience when combined with a Boomer's vomit. *BOOMER TIP* Puke on the survivor who just got pulled down. It will keep him/her there for a prolonged period of time...maybe even long enough for a Smoker to respawn in which you can do it all again. Because the vomit attack takes 30 seconds to recharge, you're better off puking, then going kamikaze. Odds are you'll be met with a 20 second respawn time, so it's more than likely going to be beneficial to your team to sacrifice yourself (and cover more survivors if possible) and take what's probably going to be a shorter wait. Keep the pressure on them in this area! *HUNTER TIP* Do whatever you can to keep the team distracted here. Pounce any straggler, pounce anyone who didn't drop down to help escort the ensnared survivor. Keep them in this area at all costs. You can grind them down little by little, and if infected attacks are spaced out evenly enough, you can probably make the survivor team remake that trip across the mezzanine three or four times! *TANK TIP* Sometimes you'll get a Tank at the beginning of this map. It's nice, but because of the narrow hallways and the availability of tier 2 weapons right from the get-go, odds are everyone on the team will grab an Auto-Shotgun. This is your worst enemy. I cannot stress this enough. If you need to wait for your infected teammates to respawn, let them. Auto-Shotties cut through Tanks like a hot knife through butter. The narrow hallways are ideal for catching up to the survivors should a Boomer vomit on a couple of them. Like I said, keeping the survivors in this area for 45 seconds is great. Anything over a minute is just gravy. The survivors will then need to go up another section of the spiral staircase. They'll be turning right out of the stairwell, so Smokers head left and hide behind the wall to drag the last one to leave if you can. There are a lot of rooms off to the side in this section of the map. Boomers can take advantage of the many angles from which to attack from, and keep in mind that a lot of the walls in this section can be broken down. These breakable walls provide 2 benefits to your team. 1) They "open the floodgates" for infected to rush at the survivors during the upcoming crescendo event, and 2) Allows you different angles to attack the survivors from immediately. The survivors must head down a long and narrow hallway with a few side rooms on either side. I wouldn't recommend spawning in any of these rooms as they have narrow entrances, and can be difficult to sprint out of as any infected character. The crescendo event starts once the survivors call the elevator. It starts on the 28th floor, and stops at the 4th floor. The common (and called to be patched many a time) survivor strategy here is for all of them to huddle in the corner behind a hospital bed directly across from the elevator entrance. The reason why this has been called to be patched so often (to no avail as of yet) is because the common infected must first climb over the bed, THEN attack the survivors. This means YOU must climb over that bed and attack the survivors. There isn't really much you can do at this point, and your team will want to save it's Smoker here. If you're a Hunter, you can jump over the bed and claw them while airborne. Usually you'll hit more than one survivor with the attack. While it isn't much, it's usually more damage than you'll get out of landing a pounce at this section of the map, unfortunately. *SMOKER TIP* It's incredibly difficult to pull off, but very satisfying when you do. And might I add that it's humiliating for the survivor team...AND it results in an instant kill! From directly in front of the elevator, try pulling a survivor out of it as the doors close. Sometimes there are common infected that will block you from pulling the survivor back to you...actually leaving them in the elevator. Sometimes you have no good angle to get a good pull on one of them. Sometimes you'll pull too early and die before they even close the doors. And sometimes you'll be a split second too late. The window of opportunity here is VERY small, but it CAN be done... Good luck! The elevator ride takes a while. If you are stuck on the 4th floor, the doors will open, and you have a choice. Either run back towards the safe room at the beginning of the map until you see the "Too far away from the survivors" message, then press "E" (by default) to respawn closer. Or, make the long climb. It's probably faster to climb it as a Hunter, as you can crouch on the pole, and pounce straight up. It's actually a pretty efficient way to get up there in a hurry. Once the elevator opens, the survivors must make their way around the ledges of the building in order to make it to the safe room. *TANK TIP* There are 2 locations where Tanks can spawn when the survivors get off on the 28th floor. One is immediately after the elevator doors open. If that's the case, the common survivor strategy is to head through the vents on either side of the elevator and make you come to them. This is kind of annoying as it almost forces you to get popped full of holes trying to reach them. However, there is a generator that the Tank can smash. Obviously if it hits a survivor, it's an instant incap. However, if you can angle it towards one of the vents, you can block the survivor's path. I have never noticed the generator disappearing over time...probably because there are two exits from behind the elevator. What this does is force them to go one way. If your infected teammates scan spawn in the room with them, a Boomer's vomit here is extremely helpful, as you can use the ensuing horde's distraction to corner and incap one or more of the survivors. *TANK TIP* The other location a Tank can spawn is as the survivors are walking around the ledges of the building just after they leave the elevator. Sometimes they'll run back to the vents. If that's the case, try the above strategy. But sometimes, they'll try to fight you head on. Big mistake! There is a forklift you can smash into them which will result in instant incaps should it connect. AND...here is your first opportunity for a Home Run. A Boomer's vomit here can slow the survivors down long enough for you to position yourself and punch a survivor...right off the building. Instant kill. There are some locations where the path the survivors must follow is rather narrow. Just past the forklift, there is a stack of boxes with a closet just beyond it. It's a perfect place for a Boomer to ambush the team. The path here is very narrow, and any trigger happy survivor standing too close to the edge can actually instant incap him/herself by blowing you up and staggering over the ledge! *BOOMER TIP* Slowing the survivors down here is extremely valuable to your team. The path leading to the safe room is full of narrow hallways that can get flooded with normal infected, and allow the Hunters and Smokers on your team the chance they need to get some extra damage in. *SMOKER TIP* As the survivors pass the alcove by the stack of boxes, an opportunity presents itself for you to drag a survivor to an instant incapacitation. Spawn behind one of the pillars and as the survivors make a run for it, try dragging one back over the ledge. They'll be hanging on for dear life, but it slows the team down for an extra 5 seconds while one of them is helpless. A co-ordinated attack here with 3 Hunters can be devastating for them! The narrow passageways the survivors must follow allow for the infected to get a bit more damage in than on the previous maps, however, if the survivors make it this far and they're not in horrible shape, there isn't much you can do. *HUNTER TIP* Spawn just outside of the safe room and run in. There are some boxes you can hide behind. Another Hunter can hide in there with you. There have been numerous times where only two survivors were left and made it to their destination when all of a sudden, two Hunters pounced on them and made their kills, denying them extra points...all in the safe room with the door closed. ************************************************************** -------Rooftop Finale------- [L4DMERCYe] ************************************************************** The finale to No Mercy plays much differently than the finales in the other campaigns. It's a rather short map, and the "make or break" point is a favorite amongst infected teams. There are two ways you can try to stop the survivors cold. The "make or break" point is the tall ladder that gives the survivors access to the rooftop. The first way is to have the Boomer on your team get the survivors right away and allow the rest of the team to sprint up to the rooftop, where they will all wait in position. When the Boomer dies, he/she will most likely respawn as a 3rd Hunter. This is where the ambush comes in. Everyone now sets up on top of the room. Be careful as many survivor teams are well aware of an ambush here. Because of this, the Smoker on your team should not spawn until after he/she sees the survivors climbing up the ladder. The best (and most common) place for the Smoker to spawn is by the satellite dish. This allows him to drag a survivor down a level and separate him/her while potentially causing a hefty chunk of falling damage. The Smoker should ALWAYS attack first to force the other survivors up the ladder to try and assist the ensnared teammate. Then, the Hunters try to clean things up. You can pounce a survivor all the way back down the ladder and potentially cause some falling damage. This will also force any survivor also on the ladder back down, thus giving the Smoker more time to dish out some damage. With 3 Hunters, you can quite possibly stop things here with a well co- ordinated attack. Communicate with your teammates to orchestrate this, and if all goes well, the survivor team didn't even get a chance to summon their rescue helicopter! The second way is to have EVERYONE rush up to the rooftop...Boomer and all. The goal here is to try and grind the survivors down until they have nothing left. Done perfectly, this strategy works wonders and forces the survivors to either risk taking excessive damage, or waste valuable throwing weapons. The Boomer should puke on the first survivor seen peeking through the hole. Some survivors will try to just rush through it. This leaves him/her open to being pulled off the roof by a Smoker...and THEN beaten by the ensuing horde. The Hunters can then do their dirty work. However, if the survivor decides to return down the ladder, the horde will jump down the hole. The Boomer can then sit on the ladder near the top. Since survivors cannot move through any infected character, they'll be stuck. This leaves the Smoker on your team an opportunity. If the Smoker has not spawned yet, he/she can press "E" (by default) to get closer to the survivors. There is a gap in the fence near the area the survivors are by that can be used to drag one of them into an instant incap. So now there's a horde coming, and potentially an incap complication. While one of the survivors is helping the incapped teammate up, the Hunters can move in and dish out some serious damage. The Boomer is still sitting at the top of the ladder, and if the survivors shoot him, he'll explode and rain puke down on anyone directly below...calling ANOTHER horde. Using that second strategy can really grind the survivors down little by little. They may toss their pipe bombs, they may use another molotov, and they may be forced to use a health pack or two. Either way, this choke point at the rooftop's entrance is a favorite ambush spot amongst infected teams, and for good reason. *SMOKER TIP* *HUNTER TIP* Co-ordination is very important between teammates, as the window of opportunity depending on the survivor team can be either very small...or extremely small. However, it can spell an instant kill for the infected team. After reaching the rooftop, the Smoker on the team can head to the left immediately after emerging on the roof and stand on the two air conditioning units. A Hunter can spawn on the opposite side of the roof - doesn't really matter where. The Smoker needs to pull a survivor towards him, and the Hunter needs to pounce on that same survivor when he/she reaches the Smoker. Depending on the angle at which the Hunter pounces, you can push a survivor onto the short raised corner section of the roof for some serious falling damage...or...you can actually pounce them all the way off the building for an instant kill! Should the survivors make it to the top of the roof, they must summon the rescue helicopter and start the finale event. Finale events play differently from the other sections of the map. You will not be able to choose your spawn points once the event starts. You will appear at a random spawn location as a random special infected. The many different levels of the hospital's roof can offer some protection as you try and make your way to the survivors, but some of the spawn locations are a lost cause...putting you out in the open on the other side of the map...as a Boomer. Just try to bob and weave your way close to the survivors to get an attack off. Boomers, as always are very valuable here as they can summon additional hordes and hamper the event's progress. The event follows a pattern. 1) Horde 2) Tank 3) Horde 4) Tank 5) Last ditch effort Horde and Tank A Boomer's vomit during the Tank sections increases your chances of success ten-fold. Survivors surrounded by a mob are easy targets, and on the rooftop of Mercy Hospital, easy targets equal easy Home Runs for Tanks. *TANK TIP* The higher the level the survivors are on, the better if you can land a punch on them. Sometimes you can send them flying towards the edge, resulting in an instant incap. Sometimes you can hit a Home Run and send them off the building. If you are playing as the Tank, and the survivors are on the platform with the minigun, try to force them to run across the pipe on the right side of the mounted gun (when facing the helipad). This can open up an opportunity for the Smoker on your team. *SMOKER TIP* Below the pipe to the right of the mounted machine gun (facing the helipad), you can drag a survivor all the way down resulting in an almost game-changing amount of falling damage. If the Tank on your team can force a player to run across the pipe, try not to miss the opportunity to yank one of them down. If you incap the survivor (which from a fall that high, it's not unlikely) the others make themselves sitting ducks for Boomer vomit once they go to rescue him/her. A horde down there can be disastrous for the survivors. Many survivor teams make their stand on the finale event by the mounted machine gun. There is an ammo pile there, med packs, and tier 2 weapons. Big pounces from Hunters are difficult to pull off as it's a wide open area, and since the survivors have nowhere to go for the time being, they all go into "defense mode." There are two decent locations to land a big pounce, but know that they are both risky as you must present yourself in front of them for at least a little while, and you can be easily spotted. *HUNTER TIP* To the right of the mounted machine gun (facing the helipad), there is a building connected by pipes. You can pounce up to the top of that building, and arch a leap over towards the rooftop the survivors are on. If one of the survivors is using the mounted machine gun, it's an easy target to hit. You can manage a 15 damage pounce here. The other location is actually from atop the satellite dish. This location is more difficult, as you'll be almost directly in front of the survivors, but pounces around 18 to 20 damage can be achieved from there. After two hordes, and two Tanks, the helicopter will arrive. This is your last chance to incap or kill a survivor. Smokers can hide to the left of the helipad and drag one down below. A Boomer here can be very valuable, and Hunters have to do what they do best. The Tank your team will receive here is hardly of any use, but if that Smoker is able to drag a survivor back from the helipad, know that until he/she is incapped, the match will not end. This can allow the Tank a chance to get up in the other survivors' faces and lower their health score, or incap them outright. You canNOT punch a survivor out the other side of the helicopter...sorry! Show the survivors No Mercy. ************************************************************** -------Death Toll Overview------- [L4DTOLL] ************************************************************** Death Toll is one of the less-often played VS maps from my experiences online, but it's fun nonetheless if you can get things into a rhythm as the infected. There are choke points on every map that force the survivors to cram themselves in to progress. There are also many locations for big damage pounces due to cliffsides, houses, bridges, towers, and tall trees. Death Toll, unlike No Mercy offers some thick foliage on most of the maps that can offset a Smoker's visual cue. The foliage provides visual cover only, however. It's not really great at stopping bullets coming your way! Boomers can try to take advantage of the foliage cover, but most survivor teams will try to stay away from the thick brush as a precaution. That being said, you can fool them through reverse psychology and attack from a non-usual spot. This applies to MANY locations in Death Toll. The thick foliage may prohibit the survivors from actually seeing you, but the game doesn't seem to think so. You *will* have to find additional cover to spawn since technically you are "out in the open." Death Toll has been altered in a few locations for balance in VS mode. The Drains map has been altered in the bridge crescendo event room. It now offers several more angles from which you can attack the survivors. The Boathouse Finale map now offers a Hunting Rifle at the end. The weapons and health packs are now positioned outside on the deck instead of on the first floor of the house. The house has been dramatically altered as well. There are no more closets for the survivors to huddle in behind unbreakable walls. In VS mode, the house turns into swiss cheese. There's even a section of the roof that will give way. Like No Mercy, Death Toll is a very dark campaign. It takes place just before nightfall, and most of the maps take place almost entirely outdoors. Because of this, big damage pounces from Hunters are rather common on this map. From a distance, Hunters are difficult to spot against the sky, and in front of other objects, the silhouette from whatever you're in front of can make it darn near impossible to point you out. Be careful if computer controlled bots are on the survivor team, though, as they can still "see" you. As stated earlier, the thick foliage on several of the maps can offer adequate cover once you've spawned. Bots can also see through the thick branches, so take that into consideration when planning your attack. Death Toll has three major Crescendo Events aside from the finale. Two of which the survivors must stop and wait for. The other can more or less be rushed past if the survivors decide to do so. One of these crescendo events is at the very end of a map, and has a rather infamous hiding location that has been called to be patched to no avail as of yet. ************************************************************** -------The Turnpike------- [L4DTOLLa] ************************************************************** In spite of the actual length of this chapter, it actually flows rather quickly because the first 65-70% of the map is pretty much a straight line! It's generally the best idea to ambush the survivors at the first obvious choke point...the ladders. This map actually has two major choke points that can cause some hesitation amongst survivor teams. The first choke point is on the ladders just past the broken bridge. There are two ways the survivors can go here. The right side is the most common route, even though the left side is widely considered to be not only shorter...but safer! Many survivor teams, as a way of avoiding the thick foliage on the left side of the turnpike stay in the middle of the road, or hug the right side by the cliffs. This can make it frustrating for spawned Boomers looking to get their vomit attack off and as such, you may be better off waiting until the chock point. However, if you think you can vomit on at least one of the survivors, from the left side of the turnpike, go right ahead! *SMOKER TIP* One thing I've noted a lot of survivor teams do...for whatever reason I can't comprehend, is to stand at the edge of the broken bridge before venturning down and heading to the ladders. A Smoker from the other side of the broken bridge can pull a survivor down for some major falling damage. This is one of those really rare situations where a Smoker should spawn in front of the team. *SMOKER TIP* If the survivors are heading up the right side ladders there are two ways to really put the hurt on them. 1) Spawn by the semi truck and jump on the ledge next to the survivors. Dragging one back here in just the right spot will drag them down and hang them about 20 feet above the ground. So now, when you die or your tongue is broken, that survivor is going to take a pretty decent chunk of falling damage. Even if you don't perform that drag perfectly, you still force that survivor to re-climb the ladder. 2) Spawn below the survivors and try dragging one of them all the way down. This is a much more direct amount of falling damage, but it usually takes less time for the survivors to recover, and it can pull a victim too far away from the other survivors and lessen the chances for a big pounce from the Hunters on your team. If the survivors are heading up the left side ladder, the best location I've seen so far to achieve a falling damage pull is from directly behind the survivors. There is also a small gap on that ledge where the railing has broken away, but since it's 99% of the time such a small window of opportunity, you're better off not even trying. *BOOMER TIP* Regardless of which side the survivors climb up, the jackknifed semi truck offers enough cover to spawn and slow the survivors down. This location really doesn't allow the survivor team much reaction time. *HUNTER TIP* You can get on top of the cliff hugging the right side of the street. It may take a few pounces to finally get up there, but it offers a tremendous vantage point. If the survivors decide to climb up the right side ladders...25 damage pounces are very...VERY common here. Two Hunters leaping from this perch can be devastating to the survivor team, especially if a Smoker was able to drag one off the ledge as well. After the ladders choke point, the survivor team must enter a tunnel littered with cars. This long, straight stretch of the map is littered with cover for Boomers and Smokers to hide behind, and there are several alcoves along the main path that you can use to spawn in and deliver quick attacks from. *TANK TIP* Occasionally, a Tank will spawn on this map. The absolute perfect place for one is in the middle of the tunnel. The survivors may have picked up a gas can or molotov by this point, so be sure to check what they're carrying or at least ask your teammates before jumping into the fray. Most of the cars in this tunnel CAN be moved. And remember, if a car slams into a survivor, it's an instant incapacitation. If the survivors run back towards the entrance of the tunnel, a common place for them to camp out is on top of the jackknifed semi truck. Start throwing rocks at them! They only have tier 1 weapons, and also make themselves very vulnerable to any Hunter, Smoker, or Boomer on your team Inside that tunnel, there are several alcoves that can contain a 2nd pistol, pipe bombs, molotovs, and pain pills. One such alcove is a common place for a med pack to appear for the survivors. I guess the game developers decided that because such a treacherous choke point was just passed, they would reward the survivor team... The common med pack closet is on the left side of the wall, behind a broken section of it and down a narrow hallway. There's usually a gas can there too. *BOOMER TIP* The bars covering the small hole in the concrete in that wall do not stop your vomit from reaching the survivors. Go ahead and take your shot if you get the opportunity. Odds are the survivor team will just huddle back in that corner or closet. This can open up a brief opportunity to "grind" the survivors down slightly with well organized and spaced out attacks. Have the Hunters and Smoker on your team attack in 5 second intervals. If they can keep the pressure up after your vomit attack wears off the survivors, you will only have to wait 2 to 3 more seconds until you're recharged. Vomit on them again, and it will give your teammates a great chance to respawn and keep the pressure on them! In the tunnel, there are 2 locations where infected players can climb up to a higher level. These are the obvious ambush spots. Survivors do what they can to rush past them as quickly as possible, and if they hear a Boomer or Smoker nearby, more often than not they'll send a molotov up there. Best to avoid these locations. They're too obvious, they're not really practical for attacking from, and they don't really offer much cover. Besides, there are plenty of cars and walls to spawn from behind and attack from. After the survivors reach the dead end of the tunnel, they'll be turning left and heading down a series of staircases. They'll enter a room with a mezzanine (which they'll be starting out on) and a lower level that can contain all sorts of goodies. Believe it or not, most survivor teams from what I've seen tend to try and make it out of there quickly without checking all of the individual rooms. Maybe because they're now relatively close to the safe room...? Either way, on the lower level of that room, it's common for the survivors to find another med pack, pills, ammo, molotovs, pipe bombs, and gas cans or propane tanks. It really is amazing to me seeing a lot of people skipping these item picks ups! Coming out of that room, the survivors will head up a small staircase...and this is where they can hesitate to leave. Welcome to the 2nd choke point on the map. People expect big pounces from Hunters as they leave that stairwell. *BOOMER TIP* This is another one of those rare occasions where it's actually wise to spawn behind the survivors and make them pay for not heading out into the open. The ensuing horde can provide enough of a distraction for the Smoker and Hunters on your team to take advantage of. *HUNTER TIP* When the survivors leave that stairwell, they enter a wide open area. Directly across from them is the safe room, though they must first climb up a small hill to reach it. Your perch is directly on top of the safe room building. You get a great view of the stairwell the survivors are exiting from, and can land a 25 damage pounce from here if the survivors are adequately distracted. *HUNTER TIP* The less common, less damaging, but less expected method of attacking the survivors as they leave the stairwell is from the survivors' right side. There is a fence that you can pounce over and take one by surprise. All in all, you can expect a 10 to 12 damage pounce at best from this location, but survivor teams hardly ever expect an attack coming from that direction. *SMOKER TIP* This is one of only a very few rare occasions where it may be beneficial to your team to spawn in front of the survivors. Simply drag someone out of the stairwell if you can. It will force at least one other survivor to come to the rescue...more than enough time for a Hunter laying in wait to score a massive pounce from a high perch. There are usually a lot of common infected in this area of the map. A Boomer here can slow things down greatly if the survivors don't have a pipe bomb. Odds are though, if the survivors are in decent health by this point, they'll make it to the safe room. *SMOKER TIP* If you get the opportunity, drag a survivor off the ledge just before the safe room. You can delay the team a little bit and allow the Hunters to try and dish out some extra damage before that safe room door closes. ************************************************************** -------The Drains------- [L4DTOLLb] ************************************************************** Immediately after leaving the safe room, the survivors have two options. Run straight ahead, or make a right. Regardless, it's a common survivor strategy to use the safe room's security and shoot through the bars in the door to pick off as many common infected as possible. As soon as the survivors leave the safe room however... *BOOMER TIP* Everyone expects a Boomer to attack from up above and to the right. Instead, spawn behind one of the three large pillars in that room and vomit on the survivors from there. This is helpful in two ways. 1) It's less expected, so it's more likely to work. 2) You increase your range by spawning in the middle of the room. You're not limited to attacking from just one corner. If the Boomer gets his vomit attack off, the Hunters and Smoker on the team need to get an attack off immediately. There is no real great place to attack the survivors here as a Hunter...however... *SMOKER TIP* *HUNTER TIP* Immediately out of the safe room, go to the left and spawn behind the septic tanks. If the Boomer gets a good vomit attack off, try pulling one towards the base of the ledge the septic tanks are on. This can open an opportunity for a Hunter on your team to land a 16-18 damage pounce from up above on the ledge to the right from the safe room's exit. If the survivor team decides to run straight ahead (which most survivor teams do), they open themselves to big pounces as they enter the large room. Hunters can pounce from the pipes overlooking the landing near the bottom of the ladder. It's common to get 15-18 damage pounces here. Boomers can also take advantage of the high ground and vomit down on the survivors to create chaos. *TANK TIP* Every so often here, a Tank will spawn. Sometimes in this location, the survivors will find tier 2 weapons, and they may have already picked up a molotov. If you get lit on fire, run into the sewer water to put it out and prolong your life. The water in the crescendo event room will also extinguish the fire - even though if a survivor throws a molotov, the water will still burn...weird. If the survivor decides to take the right path out of the safe room, they force themselves to climb down a ladder once they reach the wide open. This choke point can be pretty tasty for Hunters. *HUNTER TIP* You can spawn across the room on a ledge facing the ladder, and if you arc it just right, you can make it all the way across and pounce someone all the way down, making them take not only at least 14-16 damage from your pounce, but also a bit of falling damage as well. Separation is key here for Smokers. This is another one of those rare instances where it can be beneficial to spawn ahead of the survivors as a Smoker. Drag the first one down off the ladder if you can. This can separate him from the team enough for a Boomer to puke from up above. OR...you could spawn behind the team and try dragging the last straggler back, forcing the survivors to climb back up the ladder, then go back down. This can be a repeat for the previous Hunter tip, but it makes it a bit more difficult for Boomers to attack. Past the wide open room, the survivors will head into a short tunnel, then into another wide open room. This is Death Toll's first major crescendo event. The survivors must activate the bridge and wait for it to descend while being swarmed by a mob of zombies. The common survivor strategy here is for them all to huddle against the fence by the start of the bridge and make a run for it into the small closet just past it. That closet contains a medical cabinet that will contain a med pack or pills. There is also always an ammo stockpile there. This part of Death Toll has been altered to offer more balance for the infected team. In the campaign mode, the ledge the survivors are on is flush with the wall, and there are less entrances from the walls the zombies can attack from. In VS mode, the ledge the survivors are on by the bridge is spaced away from the wall, and can allow Boomers to attack from below by arcing their vomit up over the walls. After the event, the survivors will make their way along a narrow walkway. There are railing here, but not along the entire path. *SMOKER TIP* Try your best to drag one of the survivors back down into the sewer water. You'll force them to remake the trip. At the highest part of the walkway, the survivor may take a minor amount (5 to 10) of falling damage. This section here can be used to grind the survivors down, though if a Boomer gets his vomit attack off, the survivors may just huddle back into the closet that contained the medical cabinet. *BOOMER TIP* If the Smoker is successful in dragging a survivor off that walkway, vomit on the Smoker's victim. If you vomit on the other survivors, they'll likely huddle back in that closet. If you vomit on the pulled survivor, he/she must make the trip through a mob of zombies. This is part of the whole "grind down" process. The Hunters on your team can do what they can to prolong the grind and possibly give the Smoker a chance to respawn and start the whole process over again. Past the crescendo event room, the survivors will enter more drains that split in two paths. From what I've noticed online, there's about a 50/50 split up between the two ways the survivors can go. Regardless, this is a great place to try and vomit on the survivors if you're a Boomer. Hunters can't get big pounces here and Smokers leave themselves open, but the chaos a horde causes may be enough of a distraction to get some extra damage off. *TANK TIP* Odds are the survivors will have at least one molotov at this point. Unfortunately, water is a bit further away than you might like at this point in the map. If you get lit on fire...you're just going to have to deal with it. However, this area is rather cramped. A horde summoned by a Boomer here will give you PLENTY of time to catch up to a survivor and repeatedly score hits. You can hit the pillars in one of the rooms, but after a bunch of attempts against stationary targets, I found they don't cause an instant incap. All they do is add a bit of clutter to the room that forces the survivors to jump over. So don't go and try to punch the pillars into the survivors. You're wasting your time. The survivors can either climb up a ladder that leads to a small room, or climb up a steel grating that will put that at the top of a hole in the floor. Either way...time for some fresh air. And time for a number of 25 damage pounce locations for Hunters. *HUNTER TIP* You can climb up the hillside on the right side after exiting the building. As the survivors exit, arc your pounce and aim for the entrance. It's a great place to land a 20-25 damage pounce. Also, on top of the building, you can kind of blind fire and pounce up at a steeper angle and try to land at the exit of the building. This won't cause quite as much damage as the previously listed location, but it's less expected from my experiences online. Most survivors will try to hug the building while heading to the safe room, fearing large pounces from Hunters, however, but don't count this location out yet. The survivors must head out into the open for a short while to jump through the windows leading to the safe room. From the front of that building, you can land a 17-25 damage pounce depending on where you set up from. *BOOMER TIP* The survivors are close to the safe room, but that doesn't mean they have to make it! A horde here may be enough for the survivors to slow down and allow a Smoker on your team to pull one back, or Hunters to get some extra damage off unless they have a pipe bomb in stock. Spawn behind the wall in that building and you can easily get at least one survivor. *TANK TIP* It happens, although rarely, but a Tank can spawn this late in the map. There are numerous cars that you can punch to slam into the survivors. Take advantage of them. A lot of survivor teams may head back into the building they came out from to avoid you. But one of them may stand at the exit of the building. You can climb up the front of the building and run along the roof to drop in front of them! If the survivors make it here with decent health, do whatever you can to lower their health score, because they're probably going to make it to the safe room. ************************************************************** -------The Church------- [L4DTOLLc] ************************************************************** Immediately out of the safe room, an ambush can take place. This is widely expected by the survivors, so pulling it off can be rather challenging if you're playing against a competent survivor team. It's a wide open area they'll be entering, and as such, it's a Boomer's worst enemy. A Boomer can *try* to vomit down on the survivors by climbing up the building to the left out of the safe room (behind the train car) and spawning directly above the survivors, but more often than not, you'll get popped by someone expecting you to be there. Truth be told, there really is no good place to cause a lot of panic amongst the survivors in this area. Hunters have several locations where they can score big pounces, but without a horde to hold them in place for a few precious seconds, they can be extremely difficult to pull off. And nobody likes landing mere inches away from a survivor on what would have been a 20+ damage pounce. *SMOKER TIP* *BOOMER TIP* One way you can try to combat this wide open area against a team of survivors is to have a Smoker spawn directly above the safe room and try to drag the last survivor back. As the Smoker is pulling the survivor back, you can have the Boomer spawn in the same location to try and vomit on the pulled victim. This may slow the survivors down long enough for a few decent damage pounces from the Hunters on your team. There are two ways the survivors can go about this area. The safest way is to hug the right side wall and enter the building. Inside, there may be tier 2 weapons, propane tanks, or gas cans. Upon exiting that building, the survivors are sheltered from the side by the wall and the silos on their left. They must basically cram single-file through this narrow passage way, and any Hunter that can spawn behind the team and pounce as they exit the building can expect a 12-15 or higher damage leap should he make contact. The more dangerous way for the survivors to go is by staying out in the open and checking the tower for supplies or tier 2 weapons. While there aren't many locations for Hunters to land big pounces, the tight walkways here can be treacherous for the survivors because the railings can be destroyed. *SMOKER TIP* Smokers can pull victims off the ledges on that tower. They'll either hang on or they'll fall. And you can drag someone from the very top all the way down for an instant incapacitation in falling damage. But even if they hang onto the ledge, it's still a great area as the survivors will need to slow down and be careful in their descent. And remember, slow moving survivors = easier targets! *TANK TIP* While getting a Tank this early on in the map isn't common, it does happen from time to time. The wide open area in the trainyard is a Tank's worst enemy. The survivors can spread out, there's no cover for you, and if the survivors can make it to the staircase and balcony they need to reach to proceed, it can complicate things tremendously for you. Teamwork amongst your fellow infected players is essential here in order to have a productive Tank. There is a forklift that you can bash into the survivors for an instant incap, but know that it doesn't move too far when struck. A horde here is your best friend if a Tank shows up. Odds are, this early on in the map, the survivors won't have a molotov, but gas cans are pretty common in the building to the right out of the safe room and in the rooms behind the staircase on the opposite side of the map across from the safe room. Be wary of what's happening, and be sure to ask your teammates if they know of any hazards you need to try and avoid. There is no water on this map for you to extinguish yourself with if you get lit up. Before taking the staircase up to the balcony, there are a few rooms down below behind the staircase that can contain some items for the survivors. The beauty here is that this entire area is a "grind" for the survivors. Keeping them in this area can whittle them down little by little. Spacing out your attacks can provide your teammates chances to respawn and keep them around here. The survivors must pass across a balcony that has several rooms in which they can find goodies. One room from what I've noticed ALWAYS contains propane tanks, but a 2nd pistol is a common pick up, and so are pipe bombs from my experiences. The railing on the balcony is is disrepair. There are a few sections where a Smoker on your team can drag a survivor back down. While spawning here can be a bit challenging, if you can get it off, you force one of them to re-make the trip up the balcony. *SMOKER TIP* *BOOMER TIP* *HUNTER TIP* The balcony the survivors must traverse is very similar to the hospital mezzanine in No Mercy. The problem here is spawning in areas in which the survivors cannot "see" you. There are some thick trees over by the tall tower that you canNOT spawn behind because technically still "out in the open." You can try using the forklift as cover and crouching behind that to spawn, but it doesn't always work. Regardless of how or where you spawn, your goal here as an infected team is to keep them in this area. Obviously, the Smoker will want to attack here first. Try dragging a survivor down from the balcony. Then, the Boomer can try vomiting on the survivor who was pulled. The ensuing horde may buy enough time for a Smoker to respawn. If not, have the Hunters attack the survivors one at a time to slow the team down for a few precious seconds. Then you can try to do it all again. Rinse and repeat. If you can keep the survivors here for more than a minute and a half, chances are they'll burn up a couple of med packs. If a survivor gets pulled off the ledge, Hunters, remember that you can get on top of the roof of the building with the balcony. From up there, don't be surprised if you can land a 25 damage pounce! Past the balcony, the survivors will get back on solid ground and travel down a street. Both sides of this street are littered with trees that provide visual cover for your infected team to take advantage of. There are a few tall rocks that can provide decent perches for Hunters to use as well. This section is pretty wide open, so getting a Boomer to vomit on the survivors can be a little difficult here. However, there are a couple of choke points a Boomer can take advantage of. *BOOMER TIP* In the middle of the street, there is a School Bus that you can climb up the sides on. Most survivor teams when approaching this will swing far to the left in anticipation of a Boomer. If you climb up and over the bus, it may juke the survivors long enough for you to vomit on at least one of them! Immediately past the school bus is a small shack that contains a medical cabinet. There are usually some gas cans or propane tanks in there as well. Puking on the survivors as they're inside there is more effective than you think. For one, if there ARE gas cans or propane tanks, a stray bullet can spell some pain for the survivors. But if the team sticks inside that building until the blinding effect goes away, know that Hunters and Smokers can attack through the window across from the doorway. Up the road, the survivors will come across a house. The road is blocked so they must enter it. There is a garage off to the side that usually contains some sort of goodies, but I rarely ever see survivor teams checking it. It may be a good idea to not even set up there in anticipation for the survivors. Inside the house, med packs, pain pills, ammo, and gas cans are rather common. This house, however is a decent area to "grind" the survivors. There are plenty of window that can be jumped through to enter the house and attack from unexpectedly. Obviously, Smokers here aren't quite as effective, but if you see an opportunity to drag one back amidst some confusion, take advantage of it! Through the house, the survivors enter yet another wide open area. There is an ambulance here that can contain a med pack, pain pills, or an oxygen tank. *TANK TIP* A Tank spawning here is from what I've noticed the most common occurrence. There are a couple of cars past the ambulance that can be used to smash into the survivors. Because there's a lot of room here, you will more than likely need to rely on your teammates. Also, remember there is no water for extinguishing yourself if you get lit up. Past the ambulance, the survivors enter a cemetery (seems rather fitting for a zombie game, huh?) and must make their way up to the church. There is a shack near the entrance of the cemetery that can contain goodies, most commonly gas cans. *HUNTER TIP* From atop the shack at the entrance to the cemetery, you can pounce and reach the actual entrance the survivors must go through. My personal best pounce here is 19 damage. But anything over 13 here is great! The survivors are now at the end of the map...however, the guy inside the church doesn't believe that the survivors are immune, and so as sort of a "test" he rings the church bell which the zombies just flock to! This crescendo event has an area for the survivors to cram into and has been called to be patched to no avail as of yet. The location most survivors will use (and the location that needs to be patched) is in the room with the ammo stockpile. There are a few crates near a corner, but spaced out enough for the survivors to huddle between the wall and those crates. Zombies CAN climb on top of the crates to attack from above - and truth be told, until this area is patched, it's probably your best bet if you're a Hunter. Smokers and Boomers...well...you can try to attack from the survivors' right side through that door to try and get a melee swipe off, but that's all you can really do. For a Smoker, it may be your best bet too. You can try to drag one of them out of that corner from directly across from the survivors, but more than likely, the survivors are just spamming their melee attack and will break your tongue's hold before you start doing damage to them. If the survivors reach the crescendo event, more than likely they'll make it to the safe room because of the location they can huddle into described above. The Church in VS mode is different from the church in campaign mode. The roof breaks and the large boarded up section against the back wall is now glass and can be broken. It allows for a couple new angles the infected can attack from. Either way, the survivors will likely stay in that location until after the event is over and head to the safe room. Looks like the guy inside the safe room wasn't immune after all! He will turn into a random special infected to provide one minor last obstacle for the survivors to deal with. If you can get an attack off here to lower their health score, go for it because they're going to make it. ************************************************************** -------The Town------- [L4DTOLLd] ************************************************************** In my personal opinion, Valve got really lazy when modifying this map for VS mode. There are a ton of rooftops lining most of the level, yet Hunters can't pounce up on most of them. Because the map is so large, half the level doesn't even appear until after you progress through an area, and traveling from rooftop to rooftop is impossible. There are a lot of the red "out of bounds" barriers that shouldn't be where they are - and they block access to more rooftops. Maybe it was a balancing issue, but I don't see how. All that being said, it can be very difficult for Hunters to land a pounce over 20 damage on this map. Immediately, the infected team has an opportunity to grind the survivors down. *BOOMER TIP* Since most survivors like to grab a Hunting Rifle and pick off as many zombies as they can from this vantage point atop the church, try to force them back into the safe room by vomiting on them! Since they're still be in the safe room, you will respawn without a countdown timer. Alert your fellow teammates to go in there and dish out as much damage as possible to take advantage of the no spawning time. Boomers who respawn more quickly can constantly keep the pressure on the survivors by repeatedly vomiting on them. Hunters and Smokers can try to enter and get a quick melee swipe off before dying. The little bit of damage done here is free for your team because you can always respawn instantly as long as they stay in there! Once the survivors leave the safe room, there are three ways they can go to progress through the map. The Town map of Death Toll is huge. It's the longest single map in the game. Most survivor teams will take any shortcut they can to make their lives easier. 1) The shortest path is for the survivors to jump on the brick wall and fence in the church yard and walk along that, then jump over the bus barricade. 2) The most common path (and medium length) is for the survivors to exit through the gap in the wall near the white truck on their right, then once in that open area, jump over the sandbags between the two busses. 3) The longest path (and the one more littered with goodies) is to exit through the gap in the wall near the white truck, then enter the buildings across from them. Regardless of which way the survivors take, as a Hunter, a 25 damage pounce is very attainable here. *HUNTER TIP* From atop the church, pounce onto the cross, then pick out a likely target if you can. No matter which way the survivors go, you can land an absolute monster pounce from here. A Boomer slowing the team down here provides you an easier target. Landing one of these pounces is very satisfying...and it makes you wish that the pounce damage wasn't capped at 25! Beware though, that skilled survivor teams know of this spot, and if one of them has a Hunting or Assault Rifle, your location will be the first one they check! Try to take advantage of this area. This is one of the few areas where a 25 damage pounce on this map is attainable. If the survivors take the shortest path (over the brick wall) do whatever you can to get in front of them for an ambush. Taking this path isn't common amongst survivor teams...thankfully. It can be a little tough to react to an entire team using this shortcut. If the survivors decide to go into the open area and jump over the sandbags, it allows you and your team more of a chance to attack. The Boomer on your team can set up behind the busses and lay in wait, the Smoker has a chance to spawn behind the team and drag them back into that wide open area, and the Hunters can take advantage of any straggler, rusher, or unaware survivor. If the survivors decide to enter the building directly across from the church, you can try the "grind" strategy to whittle them down a piece at a time while they're camping inside. There is a small office room off to the side in the main building that the survivors may try cramming into, and if they do, melee swipes become more effective. If you're a Boomer, just try to keep them in that room as long as you can. Back on the streets, the survivors have a fairly linear path that will take them through a building. Along the street, there are a couple of rooms off to the side that may contain goodies for the survivors, and if everyone crams into one of those side rooms, try the "grind" strategy again if you can. *TANK TIP* There are plenty of cars in this location, along with dumpsters you can smash into the survivors. While this area is pretty wide open, there are numerous obstacles that can hold the survivors up. However, these obstacles can hinder the trajectory of whatever you smash their way. Keep that in mind, as you may need to take an extra half second to line yourself up before attempting to punch something their way. Otherwise, this may be a decent area to try solely throwing rocks at them. Arc them a little higher to get them over whatever obstacles are in the way and you can still score hits. Inside the building, there's usually some goodies or a 2nd pistol. Keep an eye to see if the survivors have pills and molotovs/pipe bombs. Because most survivor teams expect an ambush once they leave that building, this is another one of those rare occasions where it may be wise to spawn behind the team as a Boomer. Make them pay for taking too long! Once the survivors leave, they're in another open area, but there is plenty of cover for the infected players to spawn behind. They'll 99.999% of the time hug the wall immediatey across from the exit they came out of, and most likely check a room off to the side after rounding the corner. This is another area where you can grind the survivors down if they all cram in there. The survivor team can enter the building off to the left to check for supplies, but in order to advance, they must jump atop the white van and walk along a ledge to enter an office building. Through that building, the survivors have a good view of what they must do next. A forklift is holding up a slab of concrete - which they will have to use to make a path for themselves. *HUNTER TIP* Out of the office building, head to the far right and climb up the building. This is a a great vantage point for you to use and try to get one of those rare 25 damage pounces on this map! This crescendo event can be rushed past. If you see the survivors trying to make a dash for it, do whatever you can to spawn in front of them and dish out some damage. They still have a little ways to go before they reach the safe room, and with a horde on their tails, slowing one of them down can allow the horde to catch up and slow him/her down even more. A Boomer here can be extremely valuable as well. There are 3 common ways for the survivors to deal with this crescendo event. Like I already mentioned, rushing past it is a viable option. The 2nd method is to have someone activate it and then run all the way back against the fence and huddle into the corner. This is actually a much safer method for the survivors. Hunters, because of the crappy job Valve did on this map, cannot get on any of the nearby rooftops to land pounces. If they huddle in that corner against the fence, there isn't anything you can do, unfortunately. There's no cover to hide behind, it's wide open, and you have to go at them from one direction. It really sucks... The other common method of dealing with this event is to activate it and then have everyone huddle into one of the bathrooms in the office building. If the survivors do this, you can actually spawn in one of the bathrooms beside the survivors...I can't come up with an explanation to it, myself as of yet. Maybe just crappy programming at this part. Either way, if the survivors huddle into the office building, claw swipes are your best bet. Regardless of what the survivors do at this crescendo event, one thing is for certain. The horde that comes is HUGE! It's actually a 2 part horde. After the initial wave, the "horde is coming" theme will play again and wave 2 will start. Most survivor teams will already know this, but if you see them starting to move after the first wave, get ready to go in because a swarm of common infected are going to make things a little more interesting! *TANK TIP* There are cars here to hit at the survivors. It's also a wide open area, so if you need to, throw some rocks at them. It's rare to get a Tank activated once the crescendo event starts...but sometimes THAT is the trigger. If that's the case, take full advantage of the chaos and pummel away! If you see the survivors still trying to huddle in that corner next to the fence, chucking some slabs of concrete at them is your best bet. After the event, the survivors won't want to waste any time in finishing the level. They'll make a mad dash over the balcony and try to push as hard as they can to make it to the safe room. *SMOKER TIP* If you can drag one of the survivors back after the other three have crossed over the dirt hill in the middle of the road, you can force one of them to backtrack and aid their ensnared companion. Boomers and Hunters can take advantage of this situation. The survivors must pass around a bus and enter a narrow alley. There are several rooms off to the side the survivors can enter to look for supplies, but since this area is so close to the safe room, these optional areas are often skipped past. Hunters can take advantage of decent pounces (15-18) should the opportunity present itself as the survivors pass through the narrow areas. They'll have to climb up a staircase, then cross over a wooden plank before dropping down on the other side of the chain link fence and pushing to the safe room. *SMOKER TIP* Drag someone back as they try to cross the wooden plank and you'll force him/her to remake the trip. A Boomer can be useful here to help grind the survivors down. *BOOMER TIP* As the survivors cross over the wooden plank, vomit on them from down below. For whatever reason, most people tend to be more aware of what's coming from above them than what's coming from below! If the survivors make it over the wooden plank and drop on the other side of the fence, odds are they'll make it to the nearby safe room. Just do whatever you can at this point to lower their health score. ************************************************************** -------Boathouse Finale------- [L4DTOLLe] ************************************************************** Immediately out of the safe room, the survivors enter a garage where Francis will likely say "I hate vans." Most survivor teams expect a big ambush as they exit the building. This is an exiting location for an ambush because there really isn't anything the survivor team can do to thwart your scheme. However... *BOOMER TIP* Most survivor teams expect a puke shower as they leave the building. It may be in your best interest to sacrifice yourself for the greater good and puke on them immediately after they exit the safe room. You can spawn behind the van or in one of the small rooms off to the left side (out of the safe room). There is ALWAYS a pipe bomb on top of the army humvee directly across from the building's exit, so getting a boom off here may be more beneficial as the survivors will have to manually fight off the ensuing horde instead of using a "get out of horde free card." The best survivor teams will not wait around. They'll not hesitate to run as far out into the open as they can to try and pick off a Smoker or Hunters laying in wait. Every survivor team expects a Smoker to be on top of the roof. Instead... *SMOKER TIP* There is a bit of foliage you can hide your visual cue behind. It offers less protection, but attacking from an angle the survivors are unfamiliar with in this area can cause a little more damage than usual. *HUNTER TIP* The best locations for the big pounces here are unfortunately the most commonly checked. The houses across the street are too far out of the way to be viable. You may have to just bite the bullet and use one of the obvious locations for a pounce and target a likely looking victim. Be careful, however. Everyone will know you're there, and they'll be keeping one eye open in your direction for sure. The survivors must go through a house and enter the back yard to proceed. Inside that house is usually a 2nd pistol, pills, or a med pack. Upon exiting, the gas grill to the left will ALWAYS have a propane tank in it. *HUNTER TIP* From the back door of the house, you can go to the right and climb on the roof of the house next door. From up here, you can land a big pounce. It's another common location survivor teams check, so there's some risk involved. But you can reduce the amount of risk if... *BOOMER TIP* By the flaming barrel is a great place to spawn as a Boomer as the survivors exit the house. If you can manage to get at least one of them covered in vomit, you can make a survivor a very easy target for a Hunter to employ the strategy listed above. All you'll have to do is walk around the fence and let loose. Across the wide open area is a shack that commonly contains pipe bombs and molotovs. There's usually a gas can resting behind the shack as well. The survivors will follow a dirt path along a cliffside that the infected can climb up and enter a wooded area. The foliage here is a godsend for Smokers and it can completely offset their visual cue. Hunters can land monster pounces from atop that cliffside should a Boomer's horde hold one of the survivors in place long enough. Most survivor teams will head straight past the pavilion and enter the boat house. However, there is also another small cabin off to the left after passing that cliff. Inside may be pills, med packs, pipe bombs, molotovs, propane tanks, or gas cans. It's really amazing to me that a lot of survivor teams pass up this potential treasure trove! *HUNTER TIP* The pavilion is a great place to perch atop and wait for the survivors to come by. You can easily pounce all the way towards the spotlight on the ground in front of the boat house. Plenty of range for a 20+ damage pounce! The boat house has been dramatically changed from it's campaign mode counterpart. There is a hole in the roof, there are no side rooms. More walls can be destroyed...basically, it turns into swiss cheese! The supplies have also been moved outside on the deck. Hardly anyone ever uses the mounted machine gun on the balcony. Most survivor teams will take one of two common locations to dig themselves into and hold off the horde. The first common location is on the 2nd floor of the house, with 2 survivors huddling into one corner behind the staircase and the other 2 huddling into the corner to the left of the staircase. It can be difficult to get a lot of damage on the survivors as a Smoker is unable to drag someone out of the windows, and Hunters will need to rely on quick 6 to 10 damage pounces for the most part. *HUNTER TIP* It can be frustrating if the survivors try using the 2 corner strategy. However, if you can easily perform wall jumps, you can pounce up the staircase directly at the wall, then wall jump off after turning 180 degrees and land on someone in the corner behind the staircase. Don't expect a lot of damage out of it, but it can be potentially more than what you can expect from a claw swipe or two. The other location the survivors commonly camp in is directly underneath the deck outside the house. This forces the infected to charge at them from only 2 directions, though they are considerably further away from supplies should they need to heal up. *SMOKER TIP* If the survivors huddle underneath the deck, you can run around towards the front of the house and if you position yourself just right, you can actually get your tongue attack off through the small gap between the ground and the bottom of the house. Don't expect a lot of damage out of it, but you may buy the Boomer on your team enough time to vomit on at least one of the survivors. The Death Toll finale event, like the other campaigns follows a pattern. 1) Horde 2) Tank 3) Horde 4) Tank 5) Last ditch effort horde + Tank. When it's the Tank's turn to show up, the very...very...very common survivor strategy is for them all to run out into the water behind the boat house and take advantage of the wide open area with no movable objects anywhere close to them. *TANK TIP* If you get lit on fire, run into the water to extinguish it. If the survivors run out into the water, your best bet is throwing rocks at them. No use getting filled full of lead while trying to catch up to someone with no obstacles to block their escape. *HUNTER TIP* The survivors will more than likely head out into the water to deal with the Tank. As a Hunter, you cannot pounce while submerged in the water. However, what you CAN do is crouch in the water and get close to the survivors - take a swipe from behind one of them - then crouch again to hide. Be aware that while you're crouching in the water, you WILL start to take some drowning damage after a while, so every so often, pop your head above water and then immediately crouch. Hunters get so low to the ground that they cannot be seen by the survivors unless they crouch...and why would you want to crouch while a Tank is also attacking!? After the boat arrives, the Smoker on your team is a godsend if you can manage to drag one of the survivors off the pier. You force that survivor to make the trip again, and that can give your last ditch effort Tank enough time to catch up and score some hits! If a Tank can catch up to the survivors on the boat, you can actually send them flying off the rescue vehicle! This can spell a kill for the infected team. The boat takes a while to actually arrive, so it's easier to knock a survivor off the boat as you have more time to try and get there. It also allows a Smoker more time to drag one of them off the pier - where the ensuing horde will proceed to pummel the unfortunate victim. Now make the survivors pay their Death Toll. ************************************************************** -------Dead Air Overview------- [L4DAIR] ************************************************************** Dead Air is quite possibly the most played VS map in Left 4 Dead. It's very infected-friendly because of it's many choke points, high perches for Hunters, movable objects for Tanks, and cover in most of the wide open spaces for Boomers to hide behind. Dead Air takes place at sunset. Because of the orange hues in the sky, it can make finding a Hunter waiting to ambush fairly easy for the survivors. The silhouette a Hunter puts out against the orange sky sticks out like a sore thumb, and in a lot of locations, there really isn't anything you can do about it. As a Hunter, try to take note of objects such as chimneys, pillars, billboards, etc to try and mask your silhouette by hiding in front of them. Sometimes the survivors may not even notice you until it's too late! Just be sure to not go out of your way and pass up a practical damage opportunity for the sake of stealth. Remember that as the infected, you are going to die...a lot. Also keep in mind that if there are bots on the survivor team, they can still "see" you, even though the human controlled survivors may not. In spite of the time of day, Dead Air is actually a fairly dark campaign on most of the maps. Like No Mercy, there isn't a lot of thick brush to hide a Smoker's visual cue, but on the up side, a lot of the wide open areas are littered with objects to hide behind until you're ready to attack. Boomers can find this helpful as well. Tanks will enjoy the large amount of movable objects, especially on the 3rd and 5th maps in this campaign. The Terminal section of Dead Air is the only map that is pretty well lit. Dead Air is a fairly short campaign with one of the maps allowing the survivors to complete in less than 5 minutes on average. The Finale map is also extremely short as there is basically no hike leading towards the event. Perhaps this contributes to the campaign's popularity... Maybe, maybe not. Dead Air has three major crescendo events aside from the finale. One of which can be rushed past by the survivors, but the other two require them to sit and wait until the path is clear. One of those events that cannot be skipped past has a camping spot that has been called to be patched with no results as of yet. ************************************************************** -------The Greenhouse------- [L4DAIRa] ************************************************************** The first map of Dead air begins inside a large greenhouse usually swamped with common infected. There really isn't a great location to ambush the survivors immediately, and most survivor teams will clear out the room before jumping down and continuing forth. Outside is where you will want to ambush the survivors. There is a choke point that must be crossed, and although brief, it's really a treacherous place for the survivors to be in should one of them get incapacitated. This map is extremely short - taking the average survivor team less than 4 minutes to complete it on VS mode while NOT rushing. There are - thankfully - a few choke points and grind locations to take advantage of to keep the survivors within the field of play. *BOOMER TIP* There really isn't a great location to always set up as the Boomer at the beginning of this map. The survivors could exit through the windows or the door. One of the most common spots to set up is in the corner between the two outside the greenhouse. That way, you can attack them no matter which exit they take. The problem is, if you do get a vomit attack off here, odds are the survivors will simply retreat back into the greenhouse and wait until the coast is clear. Instead, it may be wise to save your spawn until... *SMOKER TIP* The choke point at this section of the map is the narrow wooden plank the survivors must cross over to reach another rooftop. There are two locations you can set up to pull a survivor into an instant incap. The first location is down below - between the buildings, and stand on top of the garbage dumpsters. As a survivor crosses, use your tongue attack and try to pull one over the edge. The second location is across the wooden plank on top of the building by the water tower. Try dragging a survivor as they cross the plank there to get an instant incap. If all goes well with this ambush... *HUNTER TIP* You can pounce on top of the water tower on the building across the wooden plank. It's a VERY common location to attack the survivors from, so make sure you stay on the back side of the tower until you're ready to attack. A survivor pulled by a Smoker's tongue over the edge will require a teammate's assistance. 5 long seconds for you to line up and execute your 25 damage pounce! *BOOMER TIP* If you saved your spawn and the Smoker pulled someone over the edge, there is enough cover across the wooden plank to spawn behind and puke on the survivors. The ensuing horde will complicate the rescuing of the incapped survivor and can give your Smoker a chance for his tongue attack to recharge - or respawn completely so that he can try it again! Across the wooden plank, the survivors will enter the building and may possibly find pills, a med pack, and a 2nd pistol. Molotovs and/or pipe bombs may also be present. The survivors will have to exit through the windows and onto another rooftop in order to proceed. *BOOMER TIP* Fearing an ambush, a lot of survivor teams are hesitant to simply charge headstrong out the windows and climb the ladder to their right. This is one of those rare occasions where it may be beneficial to spawn behind them as a Boomer to try and make them pay for not advancing. *TANK TIP* Getting a Tank here usually results in the survivors backtracking into the building. However, if one of the survivors is out on that rooftop past the windows, you can punch them off the building across from the ladder. HOME RUN! If the survivors backtrack through the building, you can still hit a Home Run, but it can be more difficult. What you CAN do, however, is hit a survivor into a corner fairly easily and continue to pummel him/her. *HUNTER TIP* *SMOKER TIP* The survivors, on the rooftop leading to the short ladder make themselves vulnerable to a very potent Smoker + Hunter combination that I've dubbed the "Piledrive." Because there is a gap between the rooftop and the taller building directly across from the windows the survivors exit, a Smoker who pulls one of them off the rooftop will leave them dangling above the ground some 70+ feet below. If the Smoker's tongue gets destroyed while the survivor is hanging, or if the Smoker dies, the survivor will fall to an instant incap by hanging onto the ledge. However...if a Hunter is able to pounce on that dangling survivor, the opportunity to grab onto the ledge is lost for the survivor, and since the Hunter's pounce breaks a Smoker's tongue, all that can happen now is a plummet to an instant death! Up the ladder on that rooftop, the survivors will reach a few ledges to jump down. This is a major damage dealing location - and while the opportunity you have here is very slim, a Smoker pulling a straggling survivor back after the other 3 have descended will result in a kill as the others will not be able to return and save their teammate. Hunters can accomplish this as well, but the Smoker can pull a survivor back and out of the range of rescuing survivors jumping and spraying bullets your way. If the Smoker DOES pull a survivor back, it may be wise for a Hunter to pounce on the victim as soon as the survivor is beyond rescue. Reason being, the Hunter dishes out damage much faster than the Smoker can, and then the Smoker is free to try and separate the survivors again later on in the map. Down those ledges, the survivors will enter another building and head down a staircase. They'll proceed to jump out of the windows and on top of a semi truck. In this area, there is an alarmed car to be taken advantage of if at all possible. *HUNTER TIP* In the open area past the kitchen, there are a plethora of high perches for Hunters to score huge pounces from. If you're comfortable with wall jumping straight up, the building immediately to the left out the kitchen windows has some green awnings you can pounce on. From there, put your back against the wall and pounce straight up. While in midair, tilt forward about 10 degrees or so and pounce again. The entire time, you should be trying to move backwards ("S" by default). You should land on the very ledge of the roof (this is the only section of the roof you can be on). From there, you can walk a bit to your right and perch atop the white outcropping. From that vantage point, you can make it all the way to the top of the semi truck. Timing your pounce here is crucial, but it's a guaranteed 20+ damage haymaker! If you're not comfortable with timing the pounce while the survivors walk along the semi truck, you can also pounce all the way down to the alarmed car in front of the building with the safe room. With a horde from either the alarmed car or a Boomer (or both) you may get a fairly stationary target to pounce on. *BOOMER TIP* There is plenty of cover outside for you to spawn behind and try to puke on the survivors from. Once the survivors get inside the building, the safe room is right in front of them. Keeping the survivors in the open area is the best way of stopping them before they end the round. *SMOKER TIP* You can spawn in the building directly below the survivors. It's not a common location that I've seen a lot of survivors check, so it may be beneficial to pull a survivor back. Doing so may also provide a good target for the Boomer on your team to puke on - which in turn will help the Hunters waiting for big pounces to present themselves. Inside the building, the safe room is very close. If the survivors are in good health here, odds are they'll make it in. Just do what you can to lower their health score. A Smoker here can sort of delay the inevitable, but if there are Hunters ready to spawn and pounce, you can complicate things greatly. The hallways to the left and right of the safe room don't provide a lot of cover to hide behind and spawn, but if you get the opportunity to - act quickly and you might be able to land a pounce at the last minute. ************************************************************** -------The Crane------- [L4DAIRb] ************************************************************** Immediately out of the safe room, the survivors enter one of the most notorious ambush locations in the game. The wide open area and ladder choke point here cause many survivor teams to stop at the dock doors and scope out the area before venturing forth. *HUNTER TIP* A great way to potentially complicate things for the survivor team later on in the map is to climb up the building to the right just out of the dock doors. Once you're able to spawn, light yourself on fire using the flaming barrel and jump on top of the gas cans sitting on the wooden crates near the edge of the building. It will ignite them and therefore they won't be there for use later on in the round. Unfortunately, there is no way to douse yourself, so you'll have to go in for a quick attack. Just advise your teammates you're doing it so they can attack alongside you. *BOOMER TIP* You don't want to be a Boomer here. Seriously...you don't! The wide open area and easy retreat back into the building make any kind of damage output from an ensuing horde very little, if non-existent. Instead, immediately as the survivors exit the safe room, spawn behind the boxes and try to vomit on the survivors as they run towards the dock doors. Odds are your horde won't dish out any damage, but figure that even 5 damage here against one of them is better than nothing. Take what you can get. 90% of the time, you will respawn as a Hunter. Because many survivor teams are still skeptical about leaving the building fearing huge pounces, it may shave some times off your respawn countdown and allow you to get into position... Alternatively, you could also try climbing the pipe on the building to the right just outside of the dock doors and puking on the survivors down below, but so many survivor teams expect an ambush coming from that direction that you may get popped before scoring a hit on one of them. *HUNTER TIP* There are 3 popular locations here to land a 25 damage pounce. The first location is directly across from the exit of the building, atop the roof. There's adequate cover for you, and you can cover most of the ground in that area with a single pounce from that location. This includes the corner immediately outside the dock doors, the ladder, and if your pounce is angled just right, you can actually land inside the building - on the ledge by the dock doors. This can be a very unexpected 25 damage pounce on the survivors as they try picking off any zombies loitering around or scanning for infected waiting to ambush. Jump the gun from this location though, and you're probably toast. The second location is from atop the crane. You're way high up, and if you stay near the back side of the crane, you're pretty much invisible. The problem with this location is that it forces you to spawn in order to get into location. The advantage to this location is the sheer range you have. You can pounce to the ladder, you can pounce to the dock doors, you can pounce to the far corner opposite the ladder, and if you angle your pounce just right, you can pounce to the small room inside the building to the right of the ladder. The third location is across the fence and atop the building to the right of the ladder. This location allows for huge and unexpected pounces as the survivors leave the building. Most survivor teams usually check the crane to see if a Hunter is going to pounce from there, and they expect pounces from straight ahead. They usually seem to forget that a Hunter can travel great distances with a pounce, and neglect to check to their left as they leave the building. The problem with this location is that you make yourself less effective as the survivors come to the ladder choke point. This section of the map can be treacherous for the survivors. Huge pounces here from Hunters can cripple the team, and if a survivor is pulled back before jumping over the fence while the other three have crossed, they have no way of returning to help their teammate. An incapacitation here with the three other survivors on the opposite side of the fence spells an instant kill. Now the survivors must come up to the biggest major choke point of this map. The ladder. That notorious ladder. Hunters can take advantage of the first two locations listed above for great opportunities for a 25 damage pounce while the survivors cannot draw their weapons on the ladder. However, the biggest contribution to the infected team here is the Smoker. *SMOKER TIP* I hope you didn't attack immediately. From out of the safe room, climb up the building to the right of the dock doors and enter the building through the windows to your right after reaching the rooftop. After the survivors exit the safe room, spawn, and start using your claw swipes at the wooden boards on the windows. One of these windows provides the perfect location to your attack. Make sure to destroy all of the boards on BOTH of the windows, as a Smoker can take advantage of this later in the level. This is a VERY common location or Smokers, and as such, many survivor teams will look up in this direction after entering the wide open area. Just hang back and wait until the survivors climb the ladder. This is where you come in. You want to drag a survivor back from the top of the ladder - and you CAN reach the survivors from the window closest to that ladder. One of two things will happen. 1) The survivor will be dragged back but drop, usually slamming into the fence and therefore taking a modest chunk of falling damage. 2) The survivor will be dragged back without dropping OVER the fence and be hanging about 30 feet above the ground. THIS is what you want. Technically, it's a glitch, but it's been around since the game's launch, and I believe that Valve either can't do anything about it, or doesn't know what to do about it. Either way, if a survivor is hanging from that high up, killing you or breaking the tongue will result in that survivor dropping into an instant incapacitation...and since the other 3 survivors are most likely on the other side of the fence, they have to leave their friend behind. Instant kill. So that's the choke point. It's a very dangerous place for the survivors when they're dealing with a skilled infected team. Many matches on this map end here - but if they make it past, fear not, this map is rather large and you will have a number of opportunities to take care of the survivors. Past the ladder, the survivors will enter a bathroom, then a bedroom. The bed is a common place for tier 2 weapons, and the various apartments that branch off the main hallway are usually stocked with goodies. *HUNTER TIP* In these small apartments that branch off the main hallway, med packs, pain pills, molotovs, pipe bombs, etc are commonly found. A lot of survivor teams will check these rooms. You and another Hunter can take advantage of the survivor team's curiosity by waiting in one of the bathrooms (where pills are commonly found). Have one Hunter pounce on the survivor immediately, then as another comes to the rescue, the other one can pounce a different survivor. These apartments are pretty dark, and therefore a great place for a surprise attack! Past the hallway, the survivors will head up a staircase and enter another apartment. This is another common place for tier 2 weapons, and most of the time, an ammo stockpile will be found here as well. *SMOKER TIP* Remember when I said to break the boards on both of the windows in the previous Smoker Tip? Well, this it comes in handy again. There are 2 locations you can try dragging a survivor out of the window from. The first location is directly across from the windows - climb up the pipe, then spawn and jump on the white blocks to the right of the crane. This location allows for more range to pull someone back. The problem is, you make yourself a pretty easy target. However, if you pull someone out of the window, you instantly incapacitate them. The second location is from down below. This location has a much smaller window of opportunity, but next to NO survivor teams will check down below. If a survivor strays too close to the window, have at it! The survivors must now start the crescendo event in order to proceed. They must use the crane to lower a dumpster with a ladder on it so that they can make it across to another rooftop. After pulling the lever on the crane, there are two common locations the survivors will camp until the action dies down. The first location is on the ledge of the crane itself. There are always some gas cans around here for the survivors to ignite, which they commonly do at the base of the ladder - unless of course a Hunter ignited the gas cans at the start of the round. A Smoker here can drag one of the survivors into the fire for additional damage, and if any other survivor comes to the rescue, they'll burn as well. Boomers can take advantage of the structure immediately across from the crane. It provides cover to spawn behind and puking on the survivors here will delay them even longer. To get the most out of your Boomer, puke as you see the dumpster near the end of it's descent. It will draw another horde and allow your teammates to get into position or shave some seconds off their respawn timer. Hunters usually have a pretty tough time getting any kind of decent damage if the survivors stake out in this location. They're all bunched together, the infected have to attack from one direction, and they will generally be spamming their melee attacks. However...Hunters, fear not, for there is hope for you! *HUNTER TIP* If the survivors decide to all cram onto the ledge of the crane, they make themselves stationary targets for a short while. On the highest part of this rooftop, there is a tall metal beam that you can pounce to the top of. From there, you can land a pounce upwards of 20 damage if you aim it correctly. I find it better to aim for more distance here rather than height because I kept falling short of my targets and that put me in a bad situation being easily seen by the now nearby survivors. Best to aim for more distance and pull back on your pounce as you approach the survivors to drop in on them. You have to aim it juuuuust perfectly, but it can be done, and it makes them pay for camping in that area! The second location is back inside the building. This provides another opportunity for the Smoker to take advantage of the strategy listed in the previous Smoker Tip - and it allows for a couple different angles for which Hunters to attack the survivors from. Don't get me wrong...this can be a frustrating camping site for the infected, but remember that it forces their team to backtrack a bit, and therefore allows for a 2nd opportunity for your team to take as the survivors once again enter this area. *TANK TIP* The survivors will have to cross a number of rooftops, and if the Tank spawns inside the building, odds are the survivor team will backtrack onto those rooftops. Home Runs are common here. Obviously a Boomer's horde helps tremendously, as this is a fairly wide open area, but there are so many areas a Home Run is possible - and and such, alert your teammates to KEEP THEM ON THE ROOFTOPS if at all possible. After the event, the survivors will cross from rooftop to rooftop and enter a building across the gap the dumpster bridged in the event. From the 2nd rooftop after the survivors climb the dumpster, in the far left corner is an area where the survivors can (and usually do) shoot the alarmed car down below. They'll camp in that corner until after the panic event, and the alarm is now a non-issue for when the they'll pass by it later (if they make it that far). Hunters are usually the only infected that can attack the survivors when they camp in this location. One survivor will probably turn to face the pipe on the side of the building and melee any zombie that climbs up to the roof as soon as he/she sees them, so I wouldn't try sneaking up behind the survivors as any zombie if they camp in that corner. *SMOKER TIP* Across the gap the survivors need to cross when going through the crescendo event, there is a building you can climb into. As the survivors are on top of the dumpster (and it's a pretty narrow window of opportunity) try dragging one of them off. If things are NOT in your favor, the worst that can happen is an instant incap as one of them will be hanging onto the ledge. However, if you get your tongue attack off in just the right location, you will drag them off the dumpster, between the two buildings, and they'll be dangling a good 100 feet or so above the ground. Survivors will NOT grab onto the ledges of the dumpster and be instantly incapped. If the Smoker dies or the tongue is broken while the survivor is dangling, the survivor will die from the fall. You can also achieve this instant kill pull from near the burning barrel at the base of the crane, but you expose yourself too much and are an easy target. *SMOKER TIP* *HUNTER TIP* Across the rooftops, the survivors will enter an office building and will cross a wooden plank connecting to another nearby building. A Smoker *can* drag someone into an instant incap from the dumpsters down below, but the opportunity from that angle is so small, it's hardly ever successful. Now, a Smoker can spawn behind the team on the building outside and try to drag someone at an angle back over the wooden plank to instantly incap a survivor more easily, but chances are you won't live too long after that! Hunters can land a 7-10 damage pounce from the lower building's roof to the wooden plank. It's not great damage, but it can be rather unexpected to see a Hunter coming from that direction. In this building, the survivors come across a medical cabinet, and a common location for tier 2 weapons, along with an ammo stockpile. They must descend a staircase and enter a room mazed with cubicles, then descend another flight of stairs and enter another room mazed with cubicles...a Boomer's dream. There is cover a plenty to spawn and crouch behind. *TANK TIP* Getting a Tank here - especially in the 2nd cubicle room can be lethal for the survivor team. The cubicles alone are enough to hinder the survivors' progress. Combined with a Boomer's horde, the zombies make traversing these rooms slower than a sedated turtle running against the wind. Plenty of time for a Tank to come in and show the survivors who's boss! Hunters will find the office cubicles easy to conceal themselves in, but there are no good locations to dish out noteworthy damage. It may be in a Hunter's best interest to go for claw swipes in this area. The survivors will have to enter another wide open area before the level is over, but for now, go for claw swipes as they'll more than likely deal more damage than a close range pounce. The survivors here are almost always closely bunched together - a claw swipe may hit more than one survivor. A pounce only damages one. Smokers find the cubicle rooms a nightmare, and the only thing to offset the disadvantage for them here is the cover that will conceal their visual cue. Dragging a survivor in this location is almost always futile, unless a Hunter on your team (or 2 Hunters) is (are) prepared to pounce on survivors coming to the rescue. Pulling this tactic off can be difficult and frustrating. Smokers will generally find it more beneficial to just stay behind and try to force the survivors to backtrack a little bit after they reach a staircase. After the 2nd cubicle room, the survivors are on ground level with a safe room across the street. There is an alarmed car here. If the survivor team activated the alarm from the rooftop, then just try to pull a survivor back if you're a Smoker. Otherwise, try dragging a survivor into the alarmed car. There are several locations a Hunter can pounce from as the survivors leave the office building. There are 2 ways the survivors can take out of the building, and a number of ways the survivors can navigate the wide open area leading to the safe room. *HUNTER TIP* Each location here offers it's own ups and downs. Most survivor teams will choose to exit through the front door. There is a concrete awning above the stairs leading into the building that will thwart most big pounces as the survivors must be attacked from what seems to be only two directions. However, there is a light pole across the street that you can pounce up onto. If you can angle your pounce just right, you can land a 16-19 damage pounce on a survivor before they even get on the street. If the survivors look like they're going to just cut across the street and take the shortest path to the safe house, a 25 damage pounce can be achieved here as a Hunter. *HUNTER TIP* On top of the storage space building, there is a roof with 2 tiers. You can climb up to the first roof, but you will need to pounce onto the 2nd tier. You'll be able to walk along the rooftop, but against an invisible wall. You can pounce all the way to the alarmed car from here. 25 damage guaranteed if you land it. If the survivors look as though they'll take the rear exit (which most survivor teams don't) you can set up for a huge pounce by climbing the pipe on the building at the back end of the long alleyway. From up there, you can reach the end of the alley for a 25 damage pounce as well. Another common location is on top of the building just past the crane. This location can allow for an unusual angle to attack the survivors from, and I've yet to see a survivor player anticipate an attack coming from that far to their left. 25 damage pounces from this location are rather common as well. *BOOMER TIP* This is a rather wide open area, but there is cover to spawn behind. Try to attack quickly. The ensuing horde may show up in time to slow the survivors down and make them easier targets for Hunters waiting for huge pounces. Inside the storage building, the survivors must make only a short run to the safe room. If they make it here, odds are they'll waltz into the safe room. Just try to get whatever damage you can done to them before they end the round to lower their health score. ************************************************************** -------The Construction Site------- [L4DAIRc] ************************************************************** Map 3 of Dead Air allows for a possible "grind" location right from the get-go. Smart survivor teams will dash out of the safe room and take whatever beating is coming to them from an early ambush. However, some survivor teams, fearing an ambush will hesitate to leave. Make them pay for it. *BOOMER TIP* Getting your vomit attack off before the survivors leave the safe room usually results in them backing into a corner in that safe room to deal with the horde. This is a great grind location if the survivors think they can weather the horde. Hunters and even Smokers should try to take advantage of the instant respawn times by going in and try to get off a claw swipe. Boomers can try to keep the pressure on the team through constant hordes. You'd be surprised how much damage you can inflict by keeping them in that safe room! There is a small room you can spawn in just above the survivors that provides a good ambush location. Once the survivors leave the safe room, they can head either left or right. Most teams will dash to the left. There may be goodies to the right, but since this map is rather long, the survivor mentality is "let's get this over with!" To the left, there is a small staircase leading to a platform that may contain tier 2 weapons. *HUNTER TIP* I've seen a lot of Hunter players spawn atop the building the survivors leave right in the beginning hoping for big pounces as they make their way down the narrow hallway. The problem is, there are several zig-zag staircases that can obstruct you, as well as a fence section. If the Boomer was able to vomit on the survivors, you can try going in for a quick attack, then. A good 25 damage pounce location is atop the building the survivors exit the safe room from. Head around to the back and you will see a narrow gap between two buildings with a fence. You have to time your pounce well, but if you arc right, you can make it all the way to the "T" intersection. It can really throw some survivor teams off, and it's good damage if you manage to land it. It *is* a rather small window of opportunity, so you may need to practice your timing, but it is possible, and many survivor teams don't expect a pounce coming from that direction. Moving on, the survivors will enter the actual construction site area. There are stone pillars with metal wires atop them that Hunters can pounce up onto. Some of these pillars require the use of vertical wall pounces. To wall pounce straight up against a flat surface, put your back against the wall and pounce straight up. While in mid-air, you'll want to be holding the back button the entire time ("s" by default). Angle yourself forward 10 degrees or so and left click again. You should pounce almost straight up. Because you're holding back, you can stick to the wall and continue the chain. Getting up on those pillars usually won't require more than a single wall pounce. *HUNTER TIP* On top of those pillars, you have incredible range. Take advantage of it and realize that you can arc pounces over the wall between the construction site and the alleyway. 20+ damage pounces can be rather common here if timed well. *BOOMER TIP* Depending on where the survivors go as they enter the main contruction site area, you can vomit on them and slow the team down significantly. The many walls and other barriers in this area can potentially separate the survivors and allow your teammates to dish out extra damage. If the survivors climb the ladder leading atop the scaffolding, you can vomit on them from down below. Keep in mind that they will be starting a crescendo event soon, too. The survivors must ignite a grouping of gas cans positioned at a barricade between two buildings. This crescendo event draws a large 2 wave horde. There are a few common locations where survivor teams may try to weather the ensuing event. The first location is behind the scaffolding with the ladder near the entrance to the site - under the pipes. This location can be rather frustrating for Hunters as they're walled in on 5 sides. Smokers can *try* to get a pull from through the scaffolding bars, but don't expect much, if any damage out of it. That location, for what it's worth can actually double as a "grind" spot. The common infected may get a few hits off here and there. The Boomer on your team should monitor the horde coming, and once it ends, vomit on the survivors when they look like they'll make a run for it. This will keep the pressure on them, and the other infected players can try to do whatever they can to dish out damage while the survivor team is stationary. The survivor team must also run through the construction site as well, so Hunters can try setting up for big pounces as they emerge from their shelter. The second location is underneath the partially finished building in the middle of the construction site. Survivor teams will usually split up into 2 groups and cover opposite corners. There are some cable spools near - but not flush against a wall that limits the direction infected can attack them from. If you see the team split up against the windows, however, they make themselves easy targets for a Boomer's vomit attack. Unfortunately for Hunters, they're well sheltered, and pouncing on them here will not result in much damage. You'll be better off going for claw swipes instead. They can hit multiple targets, and if you get more than one swipe off, you'll probably dish out more damage than you would have with a pounce. The third location (and one I never really understood) is in the corner on the opposite side of the wall the barricade is burning down. The survivors are protected from 3 directions. Underneath, behind, their left, and their right. This leaves in front of them, and straight down on top of them. It's getting rarer to see survivor teams huddle in that corner, but if they do, they make themselves non-moving targets for Hunters to 20+ damage pounce all through the event. If the survivors take that corner, a good place to spawn as a Hunter is by the scaffolding with the ladder. Pounce up to the circular tower, then pounce across to the beam atop the concrete wall in front of the survivors. Arc your pounce a little higher up than you normally would and move slightly closer. This will help you come straight down on them. Because the survivors will most likely be preoccupied with the horde coming from straight ahead, it's rather easy to land these monster pounces. Throughout the event, don't be a bit surprised to see 18-25 damage pounces appear at least 5 times! Let your teammates know what to do, and where to pounce from. *SMOKER TIP* After the event, the survivors will likely be low on ammo and there is ALWAYS an ammo stockpile at the corner down the alley past the burned barricade. You'd be surprised how many survivor teams rush ahead without checking behind them first... *TANK TIP* Because Tanks generally spawn a good distance in front of the survivor team, you may spawn behind the barricade. There is a pipe that you can climb just behind the barricade. Once at the top, you can jump across to the pipes on the other side of the alley and cross it from there. There are dumpsters that you can smack into the survivors for insant incaps, and the maze-like setting here just begs for a Boomer to join in the fun. After the event, the survivors will move down a narrow alleyway with 2 rooms off to the side that may contain goodies for them. There is ALWAYS an ammo stockpile at the corner before they'll be making a left. All throughout this alleyway, Hunters can land huge pounces, and Boomers may find the platform up top just past the left turn in the alleyway an ideal place to vomit on the survivors from. Eventually, they'll reach a rather wide open area that makes a Boomer's horde that much more dangerous, and an encircled survivor is a sitting duck against a Hunter's pounce from any of the nearby rooftops. There is a room the survivors can enter to the left after exiting the alleyway which will provide shelter, but the whole "grind" tactic can come into play here. The survivors will then enter the power plant section of the map. Most teams will stay on the grassy areas, but be aware that they CAN pass through the high voltage sections as a shortcut. *TANK TIP* Getting a Tank here is just cruel on the AI Director's part. If the survivors are already in the building, then you have a chance at hitting the forklift into them. If not...(and most teams will backtrack) you will have to rely on your teammates to cause distractions for the Tank. Inside the building, the survivors come across a treasure trove of supplies. Ammo, tier 2 weapons, molotovs, pipe bombs, and a medical cabinet. Yeah... It sucks for the infected at this part. And just as an added insult to the zombies, it's all inside a small, but easily navigated room. Hunters cannot score pounces here easily. The only upside to this location is that a Boomer can try to start a "grind" here to help alleviate the sheer amount of supplies the survivors just found. Human mentality tells us that people tend to overuse and overspend when they feel they have an abundance. Because of this, a Boomer's vomit attack here may cause the survivors to inadvertently and absent mindedly throw valuable molotovs or pipe bombs. Considering the area the survivors must traverse next, this can be potentially lethal to them. Outside the building, the survivors get their first glimpse of the airport. Fearing an ambush, many survivor teams will hesitate and try to scope out the area before venturing out there. This is one of those rare occasions where it may be beneficial to spawn behind the team as a Boomer and make them pay for their hesitation. It's been called to be patched a lot to no avail yet, but the survivors can jump over the downed plane right in front of the hole in the wall the survivors will likely exit the building from. This shortcut skips the entire section here and puts them on an easy path to pass the alarmed car without incident. Hunters may want to set up behind the dumpsters near the alarmed car in case the survivors take this shortcut. If they don't you should still have enough time to set up elsewhere to ambush them. If the survivors do NOT take the shortcut, they must cross the street and navigate their way past piles of luggage, cars, dumpsters, etc. All of this cover provides many angles from which a Boomer can attack from, and provides plenty of movable objects for Tanks to take advantage of at this point. Hunters are sort of at a disadvantage here because huge (20+) damage pounces are rather rare, though you can still easily manage a 12-15 damage pounce with enough of a distraction aiding you. The survivors will enter a parking structure in order to gain access to the skywalk, and then finish the level. *TANK TIP* Parking structure = many cars = many opportunities to instantly incapacitate the survivors. A Boomer's horde here can spell death for the entire team if a Tank can close the gap. Inside the parking structure, the survivors will head upwards and eventually reach a stairwell that connects them to the sky walk. The skywalk is long enough to prevent you from spawning, and the only place to spawn and make yourself useful is a small room off to the left just before the safe room. *SMOKER TIP* There is a rooftop that overlooks the skywalk. The glass CAN be broken, but you cannot drag a survivor over the metal railing. It provides you a last ditch effort opportunity to dish out a little extra damage before the survivors reach the safe room. If the survivors make it this far, odds are they'll reach the safe room. The storage room just before the safe room is your last chance ambush location. Dish out as much damage as you can here to lower their health score. ************************************************************** -------The Terminal------- [L4DAIRd] ************************************************************** Immediately out of the safe room, the survivors will cross a side path blocked by rocks. Infected players can spawn behind these rocks in an attempt to ambush the survivors. Hunters can spawn behind them, and angle a pounce over the rocks to land on a survivor. Because this is such a common strategy, many survivor players will hug the left side - along the railing. You may not be able to reach the survivors if they stick to the left side. A little further up ahead, there is a hole in the ceiling which is a common place for Boomers to try vomiting on the survivors. Many survivor teams expect this, so it may be in your best interest to NOT spawn up there. I've also seen plenty of Smoker players try to use that location, but I don't understand why. Why would anyone want to pull the survivor team forward? *BOOMER TIP* Many players expect a Boomer to spawn in one of two locations. Around the corner of the side path blocked by rocks, and up above. Instead, a possible better location may be for you to set up behind the pillar across from the hole in the ceiling. Survivor players will hear you, but may start spamming bullets up in to the hole in the ceiling thinking you're there. If you hear a break in the gunfire, that's your time to move in. Reload times are always a Boomer's best friend! *SMOKER TIP* DO NOT spawn in that hole in the ceiling. I know...it's tempting, but there are better alternatives! Keep in mind that most survivor teams fearing an ambush from Hunters as they cross the side path, will stay alongside the railing to the left. A better location for you may be to jump down into the wide open area, then climb one of the pillars up to the top. Run along the top until you are parallel with the safe room and use your tongue attack from there to drag one of them back. The survivors will go through a double door and into an office section. There are plenty of walls here that can be broken, and are great locations for Boomers to vomit on the survivors. The problem with this section is that it's a long and narrow hallway. Hordes die rather quickly. If you plan on vomiting on a survivor as a Boomer here, advise your teammates to join in as soon as possible because the window of opportunity can be rather small, especially if all 4 survivors grabbed Auto-Shotguns at the beginning. *TANK TIP* Sometimes, a Tank comes early on this map. The narrow hallways don't offer much room for the survivors to run...but they also don't allow you much of a chance to dodge their bullets. A Boomer's horde here can spell death for the survivor team if a Tank spawns this early in the map. Odds are the survivors won't have any molotovs and will be forced to gun you down. There aren't any movable objects you can smash into the survivors, and you won't be able to get much distance out of your rock throw ability, so good ol' fashioned boxing is going to have to be the way you go! Work with your teammates, and tell them what you need them to do. A good infected ambush here along with a Tank can be all she wrote for the survivor team. *HUNTER TIP* If you're behind the survivors, the narrow hallway can allow you a very quick method of travel if you're good at wall pouncing. This is one of those rare occasions where it may actually be beneficial to spawn behind the survivors. You can pounce at a wall, pounce off the wall, then pounce off the opposite wall - all while moving forward. Doing this, you can travel roughly 300% faster than a survivor can run! Plus it's fun to do! Alternatively, you can try wall pouncing towards a survivor from the front. Because you're constantly changing direction, it may be difficult for the survivor to target you before you land your pounce. The survivors, after traversing the first narrow hallway will make a left turn and head down another long narrow hallway. The same Hunter strategy applies here. If you're proficient with wall pouncing, you can actually round the corner without ever touching the ground! It requires a bit of dexterity on your part, but it's possible to do, and it's like riding a bike. Once you learn how, you'll never forget. The survivors will go through another double door to reach the crescendo event room. It's a wide open area where 20+ damage pounces can be attained by Hunters. The survivors need to start up the van in the area to crash through a barricade. This will start the event. You must be ready to act both before, and after they start the event. *HUNTER TIP* You can climb above the landing the survivors enter the room on. As the survivors go down the escalator, get ready to act. It can be difficult gauging when you need to pounce to snag a survivor who is running away from you, but with some practice, you can land some monsters here. *BOOMER TIP* Everybody and their mother expects a Boomer to be up above, waiting to vomit on the survivors down below. Instead, this is one of those rare occasions where a Boomer can be more effective spawning behind the survivors. The crescendo event can be rushed past by the survivors, and many teams opt to handle the situation this way. ALWAYS expect them to use this strategy, because then you'll be ahead of them to set up an ambush. If the survivors decide to camp out in one of the side rooms just past the gate that was destroyed, you can move in and try to get some claw swipes on the survivors. This is a 2 wave horde - and it's rather large, so if the survivors decide not to rush it, they'll be here for a while. If the survivors DO decide to rush it...a Boomer up ahead can stop them long enough for Hunters and the Smoker to move in and try to cause even more of a disruption. The zombies from the event will swarm in from the opposite side of the fence in the wide open room - but they don't disappear just because the survivors rushed through. Holding up the survivors in the baggage handling area may allow the previous horde to catch up and complicate things. *TANK TIP* Sometimes a Tank will spawn as the survivors reach the terminal. Because Tanks usually spawn a good distance ahead of the survivors, the gate will be blocking you from charging at them. Truth be told, I've yet to find a good round about path to attack the survivors from that's time-efficient, and unpredictable. You *can* crouch over the fence to gain access to the wide open room, but usually the survivors will be taking pot shots at you while you crawl about as fast as a paraplegic baby. You will *need* your infected teammates to stall the survivors while you make your way over the fence and into the terminal. Once in the terminal, the survivors will likely backtrack into the hallways. A Boomer's horde here can slow them down greatly, and if you can land a punch on one of the survivors, odds are they won't fly far, allowing you to punch them again. Past the event, the survivors will enter the baggage processing area. There are a lot of ups and downs here, though the path is pretty straightforward. Smokers have the opportunity of dragging a survivor down after they go up the first staircase. A Boomer working in conjunction with that Smoker can severely slow the team down. Hunters may find it a little easier to run up - take a swipe - then run away amidst the chaos. There are a few rooms off to the side in the baggage processing room that can contain goodies for the survivors. A lot of survivor teams will neglect to check these rooms, but if they enter one of these side rooms, a Boomer can try to start a "grind" cycle with them. Past the baggage room, the survivors will enter the airport security checkpoint room. There is a metal detector that will alarm if a survivor runs through it. *SMOKER TIP* It's difficult to do, but if you can pull somebody back through the metal detector, the survivor will activate it and draw a horde. *TANK TIP* The statue holding the globe can be destroyed and the globe itself can be used to instantly incap a survivor. Due to a bit of a glitch if you want to call it that...the globe still rolling even a tiny bit can incap a survivor that comes into contact with it. If you can hit the globe and then try to herd the survivors into it. If you're lucky, you won't even need to hit the globe again, the survivors will do the work for you! Past the security checkpoint, the survivors will head up an escalator and then finally see the runway. The safe room is a ways down this area on the right side. There's plenty of cover for Boomers and Smokers to hide behind before spawning, and Hunters can also take advantage of the many obstacles slowing the survivors down by simply pouncing over them. Unless the survivors are really hurting by this point, odds are they'll make it to the safe room without much more hassle. Just try to get whatever damage you can out of the time you have left. ************************************************************** -------Runway Finale------- [L4DAIRe] ************************************************************** The Dead Air finale doesn't have a long path leading up to the trigger that starts the event. Rather, it's one HUGE wide open area dotted with objects that can allow Smokers and Boomers to hide and spawn behind. *BOOMER TIP* Run to the end of the ramp and climb up the pillar after dropping down to the left. You can get up top and walk along the wall to get directly above the survivors. As they leave the safe room, you can vomit on them as they run out. This should keep the survivor team on the ramp, and while the horde drawn by the vomit attack may not accomplish anything, your teammates can take advantage of the slowdown. *HUNTER TIP* Follow the same strategy for setting up in the Boomer Tip. From up there, you can arc a pounce and land on a survivor as they run out of the safe room. Expect a pounce anywhere from 10-16 damage from this location. *SMOKER TIP* There is a hill off to the left after dropping down off the ramp. It's a fairly common place for Smokers to spawn, but it allows you a bit of cover should your tongue be broken. There is a broken section at the end of the ramp that you can use to try pulling one of the survivors down. If the survivors got vomited on earlier, this can cause some extra damage. If you dragged someone who was vomited on, the horde will go after your victim. If you dragged someone who wasn't vomited on, his/her teammates may be slow in coming to the rescue. The finale map is very large. Truth be told, the survivors typically only explore roughly 40-45% of it during the duration of the time they spend here. There are goodies scattered against the airport building's walls but survivor teams hardly ever check over there. The main supply stockpile is near the fuel truck that's needed to start the event. Even so, the most common place for the survivors to camp out is against the yellow tape way out in the open. *HUNTER TIP* The survivors must put themselves in big pounce territory in order to start the event. There are two good places in which to get 15+ damage pounces. The first location is on top of the plane. Arc a pounce over the wing if needs be, and a 15-17 damage pounce is likely. The second location is atop another broken lamp to the left of the mounted machine gun. You can achieve 20+ damage pounces from here, though you leave yourself more exposed while setting up. *BOOMER TIP* This finale event is a Boomer's nightmare. If you are a Boomer and you have the chance to choose where to spawn (the event hasn't started yet) save your spawn until the first Tank comes in the event. Boomers are too fragile, too easily spotted, too slow, and too valuable during this event to waste. The finale events always follow a set pattern. 1) Horde 2) Tank 3) Horde 4) Tank 5) Last ditch effort Horde + Tank *TANK TIP* There are plenty of movable containers that you can smash into the survivors. The problem with this is that because it's such a wide open area, the survivors will probably spread out and try shredding you down at long range. This is why saving the Boomer spawn is so important. *BOOMER TIP* If you or one of your teammates saved the Boomer spawn, a horde surrounding a survivor here can spell an instant incap as it allows the Tank to take a shot at a stationary target. I know that it's more fun to get in on the action...but you know the saying "Good things come to those who wait." What you need to do is spawn behind some cover and then quickly vomit on at least one of them. The horde will swarm in, and the Tank on your team will have a MUCH easier time destroying the survivors. After the first Tank, the survivors may head back to the supplies to restock on ammo and/or change guns, not to mention grab a few health packs if needs be. Hunters need to get ready to score big pounces during this short opportunity, the Smoker needs to be ready to snag a straggler, and a Boomer now has some extra cover to spawn behind and try to delay them from getting back to their camping spot. It's common for at least one of the survivors to grab a Hunting Rifle on this finale, and for good reason. It's a very wide open map with nothing to hide behind out in the open. As a minor distraction, Hunters can try pouncing in long arcs across their field of vision at long range. It may distract the team long enough for a Smoker to get a good pull and cause some extra damage. Molotovs are rather rare on this map from what I've noticed. If the survivors found one, that's pretty generous from the AI Director. That being said, if they used a molotov against the first Tank, odds are they won't have another one for the 2nd. After the 2nd Tank, the plane will start up and the back hatch will open to allow the survivors on. This takes a little longer than you may think, and it may give your last ditch effort Tank a chance to pummel the survivors away from the plane resulting in a huge loss of points. Remember, if a teammate is incapicitated while the others are on the rescue vehicle, the map ends, and they lose a survivor multiplier greatly reducing their point total. ************************************************************** -------Blood Harvest Overview------- [L4DHARVEST] ************************************************************** Blood Harvest from what I've seen in my online experiences is the outright LEAST played campaign in Left 4 Dead's VS mode. There have been many times where I tried to join a Blood Harvest game in progress or in lobby, only to have it create a lobby with me as the leader... I remember seeing a chart with the following information, but I can't for the life of me remember where I saw it. If it was your website that had this information, then kudos to you for coming up with these numbers! Percentage of VS matches played per map: No Mercy - 36% Death Toll - 20% Dead Air - 38% Blood Harvest - 6% Yeah... Blood Harvest takes place in the afternoon on an overcast day in a rural area. Because of this, Hunters put out a very noticable silhouette against the sky, however Blood Harvest still offers many locations where 25 damage pounces can be achieved from. The maps are actually quite expansive, with more areas for the survivors to go than expected off the beaten path, but in spite of it's size, it actually feels a bit claustrophobic in many of the outdoor areas and the survivors will stick to the main path most of the time. Blood Harvest has tons of thick foliage for Smokers to hide behind and offset their visual cue - especially on the first map. Though you should keep in mind that the thick leaves and branches only block a survivor from seeing you. Technically they are still alert to your presence because you're "out in the open." You will need to find additional cover in order to spawn and attack. The thick foliage also helps Boomers and Hunters use the element of surprise to perform quick, unexpected attacks. The Blood Harvest campaign has only 2 major crescendo events, both of which can be rushed past. This can really hamper the infected team's chances of dishing out damage should the survivors decide to try and power through the events. Perhaps this is why the campaign seems so unpopular. Blood Harvest is arguably the shortest campaign, and therefore the most survivor-friendly. It doesn't have more than a couple of choke points throughout the entire campaign, and on most of the maps, it can be difficult to separate the survivors. The campaign isn't necessarily bad for the infected team, though. There ARE locations to disrupt and disorientate the survivors. There ARE locations to attack unexpectedly from. It's just that they may be a bit more difficult to point out. That's where this guide comes in! Unlike No Mercy, Death Toll, and Dead Air, there aren't many obvious areas where the VS mode differs from the campaign mode. The farmhouse in the finale map doesn't have some small rooms off to the side and some more walls can be broken upstairs, but aside from that, it's largely unchanged from the normal campaign. Blood Harvest isn't really a dark campaign - it just seems that way. Indoor areas can be rather dark, but all of the outdoor areas are actually pretty well illuminated. The inability for the survivors to see what's coming at them adds to a creepiness factor - but you should still never assume that the survivor team will make mistakes just because of the environments' appearance. ************************************************************** -------The Woods------- [L4DHARVESTa] ************************************************************** Starting off, the survivors will walk down a trail with a thick tree line on both sides. Most infected players will set up on the right as it offers more room to move around in. There is a hill that Hunters can use to pounce from for some additional damage, and a Boomer's horde here can potentially cause some major damage to the survivor team as the blinding effect combined with the trees and bushes can drastically slow a survivor's reaction time - not being able to act until the zombies are literally right in their face! *BOOMER TIP* If you don't die after vomiting on the survivors in the very beginning of this map, it may be wise to wait until the survivors are no longer blinded (as indicated by their silhouettes changing back to green, yellow, or red) and then simply running into the fray and hopefully blowing up all over them. This can help to keep the pressure on the team - and since a spawning time is generally shorter than the recharge time on the vomit attack, it can be beneficial. Another benefit to simply going kamikaze on this map is because in the beginning, the survivors may have a difficult time seeing you until you're pretty much in their faces! *SMOKER TIP* The thick brush here can be helpful in psyching out particularly curious survivor players. Since the Smoker's tongue attack makes a distinct noise that the survivors can hear, if you intentionally miss with your tongue attack, one of the survivors may come your way in an effort to kill you. Drop down the cliff, and if one of them peeks over, try dragging them down. I believe it was patched dragging them to their deaths - they'll just hang onto the side of the cliff now, but even if you only get the instant incap, it allows your other teammates a great opportunity to attack. Boomers especially. Following the path, the survivors will reach a picnic table that may contain goodies, and there are often molotovs or pipe bombs on the ground nearby. The survivors will have to cross a narrow bridge over a ravine and will come upon a house that usually contains some goodies and an ammo stockpile. *HUNTER TIP* I'm not sure why this works...but there is a steep cliff to the right after crossing the bridge. You can get behind it, then either pounce up to the top, or crouch and crawl up. There are actually a surprising number of places where a Hunter can crawl up a cliffside without actually "climbing" it. From atop that cliff, you can land big pounces on the survivors as they cross the bridge. Or, from atop that cliff, you can try pouncing onto the nearby telephone pole. From the top of that, you can land a pounce all the way to the house's door and window for big damage. *TANK TIP* The car parked outside the house can NOT be used to smash into the survivors. Don't bother. There are no movable objects on this map to my knowledge. If a Tank spawns before the survivors reach the bridge, it may be wise to try and hang back and toss rocks at them while you wait for a Boomer on your team to respawn and try distracting them. Just outside of the house, near the picnic table, pipe bombs and molotovs commonly appear. Monitor which survivors are carrying what items so that you can formulate a more effective attack plan. *WITCH TIP* It doesn't always happen, but for some reason, I have noticed a Witch spawning near the small shack VERY often as the survivors just leave the house past the bridge. Beware of molotovs here, and in spite of the location, having the Hunters crouch in front of her actually isn't the best strategy here. There are numerous locations for Hunters to land big pounces as the survivors make their way past the witch - or try to cr0wn her. Boomers can spawn behind the shack and try to get a quick vomit attack off that may add to the chaos, and of course, Smokers can do their part to separate the team. If the survivors look as though they may try to "pull" the Witch, this is one of those extremely rare areas where a Smoker may want to spawn in front of the survivor. Pulling the Witch generally results in the rest of the team backtracking. You just want to create as much distance between the survivors as you can. If you're a Smoker, you may be able to get additional damage off by dragging one of the survivors forward while the rest of the team deals with the more immediate threat. Down the path, the survivors will reach a small shack that may or may not contain pills or a med pack. Most survivor teams will just skip it as the map is rather short and they're pretty close to the safe room. All along this stretch, the survivors are very vulnerable to huge pounces from Hunters, the terrain allows for maximum backtracking by Smokers, and Boomers still have adequate foliage cover to hide behind. *HUNTER TIP* From the top of the section of the building that spans over the path below, you can land huge pounces as the survivors first enter this "valley." For some additional range at the expense of noticeability, you can pounce to the top of the telephone pole. If a Witch is nearby, this is a great place to perch atop as their attention will most likely be on the Witch and any ambush close by. You can also pounce onto some of the thicker trees - but be warned that only SOME of the branches from your perch can be passed through. It may affect the trajectory of your pounce. The benefit of these locations is additional cover. You're less noticeable. Just be sure you'll be able to act effectively when you need to. The survivors will make a left turn and head into the home stretch of the map. Hunters and Boomers can attack from. Smokers will obviously want to drag the survivors back. There is room off to the right of the path (facing the safe room) that any infected can take advantage of, however. The problem is, it's difficult for Boomers to attack from as the survivors will likely be hugging the wall on the left. Hunters can try pouncing from the right side, and the angle may be better, but don't expect any big damage pounces anymore from this map. If the survivors make it to the "home stretch" of the map in decent health, odds are they'll make it to the safe room with decent health. Just do what you can to lower their health score. Co-ordinated attacks usually take a little time to plan, and if the survivors are this close already, odds are attacking solo will generally dish out more damage than a quick plan will. ************************************************************** -------The Tunnel------- [L4DHARVESTb] ************************************************************** From the beginning of the map, the survivors can go either left or right. In order to progress, they must head right, but many survivor teams will check to the left for goodies or a 2nd pistol before venturing forth. They'll run down a staircase and enter a hallway with two rooms branching off to the left that continue their route. Either one of these rooms may contain tier 2 weapons for the survivors. *BOOMER TIP* In the hallway, the first room off to the left has a smaller room off to the side with a stack of boxes in it. You can use this as a decent ambush location. OR, if every survivor crams into one of the rooms, the wall between the two is breakable, so you can also use that to your advantage. *SMOKER TIP* If the survivors enter the first room on their left after entering the hallway, odds are they'll exit through the windows onto the catwalk. There is no railing there, and Smokers can drag survivors off of it causing falling damage. After finding their way down to the lower level, the survivors will approach an emergency door. The table just outside of that room is a common place for tier 2 weapons, and the small room with the emergency door contains a medical cabinet stocked with either pills, med packs, or both. *TANK TIP* If a Tank spawns here, it will most likely be on the other side of the emergency door. Tanks cannot break it down. In order to get at the survivors, go up the nearby staircase and enter the vent. You can drop down in the emergency door room to attack the survivors. There is a forklift you can use to try and smash into the survivors here as well. Upon opening the door, an alarm will sound and the crescendo event will start. There are 3 common survivor team strategies employed here. 1) Rush it. Open the door and haul ass towards the exit, fighting through the ensuing horde. If you see the survivors employing this strategy, you can try to take advantage of the chaos. Boomers here are especially helpful as the blinding effect hinders direction, and it ANOTHER horde will be summoned on top of the event's horde. 2) Stay in the room with the emergency door. The survivors will just dig in and weather the storm without moving about. This is a much safer strategy than rushing it as the infected have only 2 doorways from which to enter the room, and a vent to drop down from. All 3 entrances can be easily covered by the survivors. Hunters may find it more beneficial to try and blend in with the hordes that enter the room and try to get a melee swipe or two off. After the event and the survivors begin to move on, Boomers can try to keep them in that room and start a "grind" cycle with them to potentially dish out more damage. 3) Go through the door, head up the staircase, and camp out in the room with the vent. This is generally the safest strategy for survivor teams. Now, the infected only 1 direction from which to attack the survivors. From the staircase. I haven't seen infected climbing through the vent. There is, however, a small room blocked off by a door off to the side that from what I've noticed, many survivor teams simply ignore! Break the door and try taking melee swipes at the survivors. Good survivor teams will probably send someone to cover that side room, and therefore block you from spawning. This can be very frustrating for the infected team as there is really nothing you can do about it, and no good way to attack. You can *try* running in and taking a quick swipe at the survivors, but because the room is narrow and long with only 1 viable entrance, you probably won't get to dish out any damage. Best to just set up for an ambush after the survivors move on if they use this strategy. After the event, the survivors can either head upstairs onto a balcony to exit through the large windows or stay on the ground level and exit the building through a doorway. Regardless of which exit they take, there are several great places for Hunters to set up for huge pounces here. Outside, there is a table that is a common place for tier 2 weapons. *HUNTER TIP* Great locations for 25 damage pounces are all over the place here. You can make it to the top of the building, and even on top of a pipe overlooking the table that may contain tier 2 weapons for the survivors. If they exit through the windows up top, you have a much better chance at landing a big pounce - simply because they leave themselves in an open area for longer. But either way, most survivor teams will stop by that table for at least a short time, allowing you to try and land a monster pounce! You may also want to try above the tunnel the survivors will be entering. This is a great ambush location for when the survivors look like they'll start advancing. *SMOKER TIP* Because huge pounces here are so common from Hunters, if you're a Smoker, alert your team that you'll try dragging a survivor out into the open. There isn't much a Smoker can do here damage-wise anyway, so a co-ordinated attack between you pulling a survivor into an area with a clear line of sight to a Hunter on your team can result in massive damage to one of the survivors, OR...if a rescuing survivor comes to their teammate, it can result in two of them (though probably only briefly) being rendered helpless. Upon entering the tunnel, the survivors will bob and weave their ways around train cars. There are several sections here where they can choose to head left or right. The right paths are generally less crowded with zombies, and most teams prefer to take those for that reason. The first choice to go right brings the survivors atop a train car. Smokers can try dragging the last survivor up top back and force his/her teammates to backtrack to rescue the ensnared victim. This can be a great setup to a very damaging ambush. If a Smoker pulls a victim back, alert your teammates to pounce or vomit on any other survivor coming to the rescue. *TANK TIP* There are no movable objects here. On the plus side, the area is rather enclosed for you, and if a Boomer on your team can vomit on one or more of the survivors, they'll likely be slowed down long enough for you to catch up and start wailing on them! Through the tunnel, most survivor teams will continue straight forward and climb a ladder on the side of an oil tanker. This can be used as a good choke point for Hunters and Boomers. Survivor teams can, however, walk along the pipes to the left and cross that stretch without having to take the ladder. Smokers here, though can be great to separate the team for a Boomer to get a good shot at causing some chaos. Past the oil tanker, the safe room is just around the corner. If the survivors make it here in good health, odds are they'll just waltz right into the safe room. Do what you can to lower their health score, but all probability says they'll make it no problem. ************************************************************** -------The Bridge------- [L4DHARVESTc] ************************************************************** The survivors start out with a decision to make. Left or right. Regardless of which path they take initially, the ambush location is always the same. The room in the middle of this tunnel. I'd say that 99% of survivor teams check this room for goodies, and this is where you can start some havoc. *BOOMER TIP* *HUNTER TIP* *SMOKER TIP* No matter which way the survivors start off, they'll more than likely head into the room between the two paths. They *have* to go left to proceed, but this room is more often than not stocked with goodies. A Boomer here to force a horde on the survivors is a great way to get the Smoker to drag one away while the Hunters go after anyone who looks particularly vulnerable. You can dish out more damage here than you'd expect with a co-ordinated attack. Just make sure that if you're a Boomer, you don't spawn until you're ready to attack. Survivors expect this, and therefore you should try to be at least a little unpredictable. The survivors will eventually come to the exit of the tunnel they're in and because it's a wide open area, a lot of survivor teams hesitate to just burst out into the open fearing Hunter pounces... Don't worry, those are coming later! In spite of survivor hesitation, Boomers should NOT spawn behind the team. Odds are the survivors will be close to the exit of the tunnel, and spawning behind the survivors will result in the Boomer having to make a longer than desired run towards the survivors from around the corner and risk being detonated at a safe distance. *BOOMER TIP* Instead, spawn in front of the survivors just outside the tunnel, and try to puke on a few of them immediately after spawning and running in front of them. You'll likely die, but now you may be able to start a "grind" with your teammates. Going in and dishing out damage, dying, and then by that time you may have a chance to respawn and start the process over again. The survivors expect big pounces as they exit the tunnel. This open area is very likely to see a pounce over 20 damage. Some survivor teams will try sticking to the left wall leaving them vulnerable from the right. Some survivor teams will try sticking to the right wall leaving them vulnerable from the left. And some survivor teams will just run straight up the middle making them prime targets from both directions! And no matter which way the survivors intend to run, they're ALWAYS vulnerable from the rear. *HUNTER TIP* From the rear, you can pounce up and over the fence just above the exit from the tunnel. With the right timing and aim, you can manage a 15+ damage pounce. Also note the trees and the rocks behind and to the left of the tunnel's exit. These can provide great perches for Hunters to make huge pounces from. If you set up on the rocks, however, make sure to aim a bit more to the right than you might want. Otherwise, you stand a good chance at pouncing into an invisible wall and really messing up the trajectory of your pounce. Hunters can also set up on the hill to the right just outside the tunnel. As with any big pounce opportunity, aiming and timing is important, but with enough practice, you can start consistently managing large pounces in this area. If the survivors decide to run up the middle, they're the most vulnerable. *TANK TIP* If a Tank spawns as the survivors are leaving the tunnel, you can make use of a large log outside. The common survivor strategy here when a Tank shows up is to actually run back into the tunnel and try to deal with you there. Instead, you can use that big log to temporarily trap the survivors in the tunnel and allow your teammates who haven't spawned to go in for cheap quick attacks. You'll eventually lose control of the Tank if you trap the survivors back in the tunnel, but if the log disappears after you give control of the Tank to another teammate, think of all the extra cheap damage you got out of this opportunity! Outside of the tunnel, the survivors will follow a linear path around the cliff to their right and up a slope leading to the top of it. After moving up the slope, there is a large tree at the top of the hill that may have a med pack behind it. The survivors can now either enter the building in front of them, or head off to their right to check a camping site for weapons, pills, med packs, or other goodies. Even further past the campsite, along the rocks past the fence there may be another med pack or pills pickup for the survivors. *SMOKER TIP* If the survivor team decides to check out the far area past the fence and one of them ventures a little too close to the ledge, you can drag one of the back down and force him/her to remake the trip around the cliff again. After making that drag, you'll likely be promptly killed. If no other teammate drops down as well to escort, a Hunter on your team can dish out amazing damage as that survivor makes his/her way back up the path. Inside the building, the survivors may find molotovs, pills, and/or pipe bombs. They must descend a large zig-zag staircase and enter a hallway. There is a table here that may contain tier 2 weapons. They'll go through a doorway and have the option of simply pushing forward or checking 2 rooms off to the right. Most teams do, as these side rooms more often than not are stocked full of goodies of all sorts. *TANK TIP* If a Tank spawns here, beware of simply charging into that narrow hallway, as tempting as it may be. Right by the doors, there are usually propane tanks or gas cans that will stagger you - meaning free shots the survivors can take and really tear you to shreds while you recover, OR, being lit on fire with no way to put it out. Wait for at least a Boomer's attack before charging in. Hunters and Smokers may be able to create a short distraction, but a Boomer is the most valuable teammate here as hordes may block them as they try to backtrack. Outside this building, the survivors will be near several train cars. Just outside the door is a common place for gas cans, propane tanks, and a table that may contain tier 2 weapons. After exiting the tunnel, the survivors will enter a wide open area, though train cars for the most part force the survivors to take a straight path. There is a large metal shack the survivors will more than likely check that will contain an ammo stockpile, and is a common place for molotov and pipe bomb pickups. *HUNTER TIP* See that really tall tower off in the distance? You can make it to the top of it, you know. It's true! If you're proficient at doing wall pounces straight up, you can use this perch for amazing distance and guaranteed 25 damage pounces should you land one. You're going to want to wall pounce up the side with the ladder (Not sure why you can't just pounce up and CLIMB it...). Hold back the entire time ("s" key by default), aim straight up, and pounce. While in midair and still holding back, tilt forward about 10 degrees or so and wall pounce. Keep it up until after you make 4 to 5 straight up wall pounces. You should be on the landing just below the cone on top of the tower. From here, you can pounce up to the top of the cone and voila! Your perch. The haze on this stage can actually make you pretty tough to pick out, though you may still want to stay crouched on the back side of the cone just to make sure you don't get picked off. From up here, you can pounce all the way to the large metal shack, and you can pounce over the bridge and land at the door to the small house in the middle of this area. Land a pounce here and you're more than likely going to get something in the 25 damage range... The survivors will more than likely check out the small house in the middle of this map. It has an ammo stockpile, tier 2 weapons, and a medical cabinet. They'll have to leave that house eventually in order to start a crescendo event and make their way to the nearby safe room, however, Boomers can start a "grind" here. *BOOMER TIP* Do whatever you can to keep the survivors in that house. There are numerous entrances you can use. Windows in the front, and there are 2 doors you can enter through. If you live after you vomit on them, wait for their silhouettes to turn back to green, yellow, or red, then waltz on in and try to blow up on them. It'll summon another horde and give your teammates who should go in and try to score quick pounces or claw swipes a good chance to respawn before the survivors start the event. After making their pit stop in the house, the survivors will need to start a crescendo event that involves destroying a bridge and giving them a path up the cliff. This event can be skipped, and is commonly done so, with most teams tossing a molotov at the base of the bridge and having their survivor teammates simply run through the fire. A Smoker here to drag one of them back can be extremely helpful as it leaves the survivor and any other rescuing teammate out in the wide open with a horde on them. Remember, Hunters love stationary targets... Past the bridge, the survivors will enter into the home stretch of the map. There aren't too many good places to spawn here, but there is some thick foliage for Boomers and Smokers to hide behind in case they spawned earlier. Hunters can perch up in the large tree just outside the safe room, and Boomers can spawn behind the tree as the survivors make their way to the finish line. It provides a last-ditch effort ambush, and that's probably all you'll get before the survivors make it to the end of this map. ************************************************************** -------The Train Station------- [L4DHARVESTd] ************************************************************** Most teams employ a rushing strategy for this entire map, believe it or not. Tier 2 weapons are available from the start, there's no crescendo event, the actual length of the map is surprisingly short, and it contains a lengthy home stretch at the end that blocks infected players from spawning. If you're going to stop the survivor team on this map, you have to do it before they reach the 2 story house near the end because after that, it's smooth sailing down a long train bridge with no cover to spawn behind other than on top of the train car they'll use as their safe room and end the level in. There's a pretty thick tree line here in the beginning for Boomers and Smokers to take advantage of to the right out of the safe room, but beware of survivor teams hugging the right side in an attempt to save some time. It's not really common for survivor teams to employ this strategy right out of the chute, as the thick brush will hinder their vision. It *is* a safer route, but most players would prefer a little more danger instead of hindering their vision. That being said, most survivor teams like to stay right in the middle. *HUNTER TIP* For whatever reason, Hunters can crawl up the steep cliff just to the right out of the safe room. You can jump over the fence alongside it and then crawl up the back side. From up here, you have a few trees you must avoid when trying for a big pounce, but a successful one here will net you over 18 damage easily. *BOOMER TIP* The thick treeline here offers adequate cover to attack from once you spawn. The problem is, spawning while still technically "in view" of the survivors. You can use the trees to try and spawn in, or you can try spawning behind the boulder near the barn at the end of the initial path. The survivors may do one of two things as they approach the barn. 1) Check it for supplies. This, I think is kind of a waste in my personal opinion unless there was a nasty infected ambush at the very beginning of the map. Molotovs and pipe bombs CAN spawn in the barn, but more often than not, all the survivors will get is a gas can or a propane tank. There may be a 2nd pistol as well...but seeing as how tier 2 weapons are available at the start of the map, odds are they'll just be sticking to those weapons instead. Coming into the barn, however, keeps the survivors in the field of play a little longer, and may provide Hunters with some extra time to get into big pounce territory as they leave. A Boomer successful in vomiting on the survivors as they approach the barn may cause the survivors to huddle up inside and wait until the horde has been finished off. 2) Skip it. Remember, this is a rush map, and you have to be sure you can keep up with the survivors should they haul ass the entire time. If the survivors look as though they're going to skip past the barn, there is a particularly nasty tactic that can be used against hasty teams that I'll detail later. *HUNTER TIP* As the survivors leave their shelter, most everyone expects a huge pounce from a Hunter coming from off the barn. But did you notice those silos past the barn? They're in the infected field of play, and Hunters using wall jumps can reach the tops of them. I find it the easiest to actually run behind the silos and try wall pouncing upwards from there. And you won't get shot at, either. A successful pounce from here that gets less than 20 damage on contact is embarrassing. *SMOKER TIP* So the survivors look like they're rushing it, huh? There's a ledge they must jump down. This is your cue to try and pull the last survivor back. If the other 3 have descended to the ground below and aren't still on the white awning, it'll take more time than they're comfortable spending to go and rescue their teammate. Survivors CAN get back up to where you pulled the survivor, but something like this may alter the team's mentality of rushing through the map, and that can be good as they'll likely be more cautious, slow down, and stay in the game longer for you and your teammates. And, a successful Smoker pull here can drag a survivor back into range for a huge Hunter pounce from the top of the silos as listed in the previous Hunter Tip. *TANK TIP* There is a large log you can use to bash into the survivors close to the ledge past the barn. This is a rather wide open area, so a Boomer here to assist you is your greatest ally. After descending, there are a few ways the survivors can go. They can enter the large building and check for supplies. Odds are they'll find pipe bombs or molotovs here. Out the front entrance of the building is an alarmed car that Smokers can try to pull survivors into and summon a horde. The survivors can decide stay outside and run to the right side of the train cars - there is a small house here as well that may contain supplies. It always contains an ammo stockpile as well. Hunters can land decent pounces from atop the train cars as the survivors make their way to the 2 story house. Or the survivors can decide to stay outside and run to the left side of the train cars. This is the most straightforward path, but is empty on the supplies, and it allows for Hunters to make big pounces from behind the survivors. *TANK TIP* This is a rather wide open area, and while the only movable object you have at your disposal is the alarmed car, know that the landscape slopes downward pretty sharp and there's only a low fence as a railing to a cliff. If you can manage to get beside a survivor who may be trapped by a horde, or slowed down enough by a few common infected hits, you can punch a survivor from the train tracks down that slope and skip them off the fence and down the cliff for a home run! Remember that common infected will block a survivor's path, so it may not work if a zombie is standing where you want to hit the survivor...and the trees down below may block the survivor from sailing off into the wild blue yonder, but either way, if you can attack here, expect to get some decent damage out of the Tank spawn. With sufficient support from infected teammates, this section of the map can be treacherous. The survivors will approach a 2 story house and there are 2 ways they can go about this obstacle. The first is the most straightforward. Go through the house! Up the stairs and out the window. The other way is to actually jump over the fence to the right of the entrance door and follow a path behind the house along the cliffside and under the bridge before emerging on the other side. *SMOKER TIP* If the survivors are taking the house route, try to drag a straggling survivor. If the team wants to help their ensnared friend, they may have to jump over the pile of rubble, re-enter the house, and then deal with you. This can cause a substantial amount of damage if you can pull it off. And if the survivor team decides to hop the fence and take the roundabout way along the cliffside, again, you can try dragging the last survivor back. This will force the others to either abandon their teammate, or run around the path, jump over the pile of rubble, then kill you which can result in some pretty hefty damage. *TANK TIP* If the survivors think they can juke you by taking the roundabout path behind the house, meet them there! There's no railing to help them if they get punched. Home run! Upon exiting the house or coming up the hill from the back path, the survivors enter the dreaded home stretch of this map. It's extremely frustrating for the infected team. It's wide open with NO cover at all to hide behind other than on top of the train car that'll be used for their safe room. Hunters can try to play catch up by pounce up above on the bridge and making headway towards the survivors, but odds are you'll be shot down shortly after pouncing on a victim...if you even get that far. Smokers have no hope here, and Boomers are completely out of the question. You can *try* to go in for some extra damage, but even if the survivors are all limping towards the safe room, odds are they'll make it - that's how broken this area of the map is, unfortunately. Do what you can to lower their score, but don't expect much once they reach the train bridge. ************************************************************** -------Farmhouse Finale------- [L4DHARVESTe] ************************************************************** Blood Harvest's finale map is rather interesting. It's the biggest finale map in the game, believe it or not, and has several obstacles the survivors must navigate both physical and visual-only. Along the path towards the farmhouse, Hunters can manage big pounces, and right from the get-go, there is a kinda-sorta glitchy instant kill spot for Smokers to take advantage of. *SMOKER TIP* After leaving the safe room, head to your left and stand just behind the rocks on the edge of the cliff. If you can manage to pull someone back here, you run a very good chance of pulling them over the edge and since survivors cannot hang onto the rocks, they'll plummet to their death. Doesn't always work and it's been called to be patched to no avail as of yet, but it's beautiful for the infected team when it works. *HUNTER TIP* You can crawl (or pounce) up the steep cliffside along the left side of the path. Landing big pounces here is pretty common, just make sure that a Boomer is able to vomit on at least one of the survivors. Getting to the farmhouse is the biggest priority, and there are no side rooms for survivors to check along the way, so odds are they'll be moving quickly. As the survivors leave the safe room, expect them to immediately turn around and spam bullets above the train car, to the left in the bushes and to the right on the rocks. Getting an effective infected ambush here off is difficult, but if you co-ordinate it right, you can cause some serious havoc amongst the survivor team. As the survivors make their way forward, they'll eventually reach a train car with a ladder on the side they must climb up. This is a good choke point and possible "grind" location for Boomers to take advantage of. While it is a pretty wide open area, repeatedly pulling survivors down off the ladder can keep them here and whittle them down little by little. Also remember that Boomers that blow up in close proximity to survivors stagger them back...possibly off the train car forcing them to reclimb the ladder. Hunters can achieve that knockback effect by pouncing on a survivor with another survivor standing close by. With a horde blocking the ladder, this can open up a great opportunity for extra damage. Up the ladder, the survivors will continue on their path that will wind around to the left. I haven't been able to find a good perch for Hunters to take advantage of here, but you can use the cliffsides (as far up as you can go) to get some extra distance and damage out of your pounces. There is an amazing opportunity here for Smokers to take advantage of, though it can be extremely difficult to pull off successfully. *SMOKER TIP* Once the survivors jump down into the corn field, there's no coming back. Which means if you can manage to pull the last straggling survivor back after the other 3 have descended, it results in a guaranteed kill for you! Good luck! Next, the survivors will jump down a short cliff and into a large corn field. Hunters and take great advantage of the visual cover provided for them, and Smokers may be able to get extra damage should a Boomer connect with his vomit attack. Spawning in this area can be rather difficult since there is very little "physical" cover, but if you CAN spawn, take advantage of the survivors' hampered situation. *BOOMER TIP* In spite of the visual cover you have in the corn field, technically you can still "be seen" by the survivors. Unfortunately, there isn't much solid cover for you to spawn behind. But...if you CAN spawn somewhat close to the survivors, the corn stalks may allow you to get rather close to the survivors. AND, because this is a very wide open area, the ensuing horde may surround one or more of the survivors and allow great stationary targets for Hunters to take advantage of. You can try spawning behind the tractor in the middle of the field, which works doubly well because 99.999% of survivor teams will navigate through the field by passing by that tractor. The vast...and I mean vast majority of survivor teams will get through the corn field by running straight ahead, and once they reach the tractor, cutting to the right and hopping over the fence near the farmhouse. Once every other few blue moons...a survivor team will hug the left after descending into the field and take the longer and more dangerous path to the farmhouse. If by chance the survivor team takes this path, know that Hunters have a HUGE damage pounce possibility from the top of the hay filled shed. *HUNTER TIP* Assuming the survivor team is going to take the shortest path through the corn field (which most do) look off in the distance behind the small shack near the farmhouse. See those silos? You can get up there, you know! And believe me, a pounce from up there hurts! Using wall jumps to ascend to the top, after reaching this perch, you can pounce freely without hitting a ceiling or invisible wall resulting in some magnificent distance for you. There is a barn near the farmhouse that can contain supplies and will always have an ammo stockpile. In VS mode, this is a pretty uncommon place to see the survivors camp out, but if they at least go into the barn to check for med packs or whatnot, it may allow you an extra quick attack to get off on them before they start the event. *BOOMER TIP* If you're a Boomer here and the event hasn't been started yet, DO NOT SPAWN. The survivors will likely huddle into a corner or camp out upstairs resulting in pretty much a useless horde drawn by your vomit attack. Instead, save your spawn until the Tank comes. Since most survivor teams like to run outside for the Tank, getting your vomit attack off on the survivors as they head out into the wide open area can be devastating! Like all of the other finale events in Left 4 Dead, a flow chart is followed to progress through the event. 1) Horde 2) Tank 3) Horde 4) Tank 5) Last ditch effort Horde + Tank There are 2 very common strategies for the survivor team to employ here. The first strategy (and the outright most common) is for the survivors to huddle up in the corner next to the gun rack in the room with the supplies. From here, the infected need to more or less come at them from one direction, though the occasional zombie will jump onto the table that contains the med packs and land a hit... *SMOKER TIP* A breakable wall across from the corner the survivors are camping in can allow you to try and separate one from the team. You can also try pulling one of the survivors from outside the kitchen windows. Unfortunately, Hunters here are rather useless and worthwhile pounces are few and far between. Instead, it may be more beneficial to try and go in for a quick claw swipe. Remember, claw swipes can hit multiple targets. Pounces cannot! If the Boomer on your team has already spawned, he can use the same strategy as the Hunter or try and stay alive long enough to vomit on the survivors as they run outside to deal with the Tank. The second strategy is for the survivors to run upstairs and cover the 4 entrances from that hallway. 3 survivors will cover a bedroom each, while the 4th covers the staircase. From below, Smokers may be able to pull that survivor down the staircase where a Boomer can use his vomit attack or a Hunter can try for additional damage. Otherwise, if a survivor gets pulled, a Boomer may be able to vomit on one of the OTHER survivors as the pulled survivor needs assistance and one of them must temporarily leave his/her post. *TANK TIP* When it's Tank time, there are hay bails and large logs that can be used to smash into the survivors. This is a very wide open area, so it's not Tank friendly, and should you get set on fire, you cannot extinguish it. If you can, make good use of your rock throw ability, and remember that there's no shame in passing the Tank to someone else if you need your teammates to respawn. Boomers especially. *HUNTER TIP* When it's Tank time, perching atop the house and landing a big one on a survivor as they scatter is amazing. A Boomer's horde here to slow them down can provide you easier targets. From atop the house, you should be ashamed of yourself if you manage a pounce of less than 15 damage! When the rescue vehicle arrives, know that the back hatch of the truck takes a while to open up and allow the survivors entry. Also, the truck's ramp is rather narrow and has a tendency to push survivors off to either side forcing them to try and make it back up the small ramp. With a horde in the way, it can get messy. Smokers here are wonderful as they can drag a survivor back...possibly past a horde. An incap here will pretty much guarantee a loss of a survival multiplier. Tanks can also take advantage of the truck's ramp. If the Tank player can reach the truck before the survivors can, have him stand in the doorway to deny the survivors entrance to the rescue vehicle! This will keep the survivors in play a little longer and can provide a great opportunity for Hunters to land massive pounces from atop the barn or the farmhouse! Blood Harvest's "last ditch" horde and Tank is one of the most effective and easy to use in Left 4 Dead, and I've been in plenty of VS matches where even though the rescue vehicle has arrived, nobody has made it because of good planning on the infected team. Good luck! ************************************************************** -------Legal Stuff------- [L4DMYFAQ] ************************************************************** This is the part of the FAQ where I must state that this guide was written by me, Eric VanErt (Raistlyn on www.gamefaqs.com) for the sole intent to help others who happen upon it at www.gamefaqs.com. All content contained within this guide was written by me, unless otherwise specified. You may print out this guide for your own personal use...matter of fact, I encourage it! This FAQ is copyright (c) 2009 Eric VanErt Other websites may use this guide, but only with my expressed written permission, and must give credit to me. The latest version will always be available on www.gamefaqs.com. Putting this guide on any other website without my permission is strictly prohibited and a violation of copyright. This FAQ may not be reproduced in any way that will result in financial gain. You may not edit this FAQ in any way, shape, or form. Websites that are authorized to post this FAQ: 1) www.gamefaqs.com 2) www.gamesradar.com 3) www.cheatplanet.com 4) www.supercheats.com If you find this FAQ on any site not listed above, please contact me immediately. If I catch you using this guide illegally, you will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law and the full extent of my foot up your ass. ************************************************************** -------Credits------- [L4DENDFAQ] ************************************************************** I'd like to thank: Valve for making such an addictive game. Without the game, there would be no guide. GameFAQs.com for allowing me to post this piece of trash...err...I mean magnificent guide on the site. Myself for writing this FAQ. I mean...it wouldn't exit without me, after all. I mean...well, I suppose you could put a million monkeys in a room with a million typewriters and they'd eventually come up with this FAQ, but odds are you don't have a million monkeys and a million typewriters. But if by chance you do, the odds are still in my favor! I'd like to give a shoutout to a lot of my friends on Left 4 Dead who helped me in my tedious work on this FAQ that include, but are not limited to: Madagatchi cmartin240 [SKG] Magic moowiz Hachibi coffee whatsherface KillZone cdeath takes skill to kill TAW_Waskie rifleman1414 Trollmonger [Judge]$hadOW >f7>The-Tip-Of-The-Spear {GZ}V3ndetta [WRFF] R@ndy [FoS] Jesus MADROX If you helped me to work on this FAQ and I didn't include you, well...you probably didn't help much. Or maybe I forgot. But thanks anyway! If you found this guide helpful, I encourage you to click the "recommend" button at the top of this page. Again, if you have questions or comments, feel free to e-mail me. My e-mail address is listed at the beginning of this guide. Thanks for reading, and as the generic dad encouragement line goes... "Go get 'em, tiger!"