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When playing Left 4 Dead 2, my team-mates and I are struggling to kill a tank fast enough.

It always seems to be able to last a long time even when we are all firing on it. This also means it has more time incap some of us, making it harder to finish the level.

Is there a fast way to kill a tank?

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10 Answers

up vote 19 down vote accepted

Molotovs are definitely your friend when it comes to Tanks. You should make sure he is ALWAYS on fire. They do quite a bit more damage than you'd realize.

From there, if you don't have any heavy weapons, your next best bet is an automatic shotgun. Run in, pump him with rounds, then run out. This is especially effective if somebody else has his attention.

There are plenty of other things that work, but molotovs + auto shottys = win for me.

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I tried this out today with my team-mates and it's an incredible difference! He died so quickly. Thanks! –  Alastair Pitts Jul 10 '10 at 2:33
    
This only works on Easy and Normal difficulty. It's way too risky on Hard or higher, and since the tank has way more health, you'd have to do this many more times. –  Marcin Nov 7 '10 at 17:34
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Note also that shots to the head do much more damage than shots to the chest/back - always make sure to shoot him in the head! –  BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft Nov 15 '10 at 17:02
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@BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft there is actually no hitbox for a headshot on the tank, but are there for every other SI. –  Alex Beardsley Dec 7 '10 at 20:21
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Back when I played expert realism campaign with friends, we had no trouble lighting tanks on fire. Just keep your distance! –  David Harkness May 19 '12 at 10:59
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It depends on the difficulty you are playing, but note that faster is not necessarily better.

If you are playing Easy, Normal or Advanced difficulties, then by all means the best thing to do is light him on fire with a Molotov cocktail or gas can and then get as far away from him as possible. Make sure you can get to an area where he can't hit you with rocks. You can shoot rocks out of the sky with your weapons or the Gatling gun, however.

You also want to make sure that the Boomer does not vomit on you when the Tank is around, because it's harder to keep away from him when the horde swarms you.

If you are playing on Expert difficulty, never, ever, ever light the Tank on fire! In Expert difficulty, the Tank runs much faster when he is on fire and can outrun you when you have health in the green (60 or higher). If your health is less than 60, you're pretty much guaranteed to be incapacitated. Instead, you need to learn how to strafe and dodge the Tank so that he's less threatening. If you're playing with bots, it's much harder to survive a Tank encounter, but with human players, you need to focus on two things:

  1. Make sure you don't forget to keep moving. Lots of players forget this, stand still and shoot at the Tank until he's right up on them.
  2. The Tank only targets one player at a time. Learn how to tell who he's targeting, then let that person skirt the Tank around while the other three Survivors shoot at him.

Lastly, you can use oxygen tanks, propane tanks, and even an exploding Boomer to cause the Tank to stumble for at least 3 seconds, which is a great opportunity to get in some cheap shots.

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You can shoot rocks out of the sky with your weapons or the Gatling gun, however. Wait, seriously? Holy crap, I was completely unaware of that! –  FAE Jul 9 '10 at 13:53
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@FallenAngelEyes Knowing is half the battle! :P –  cowgod Jul 9 '10 at 15:19
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Unless you and your team are disciplined enough to concentrate fire, i disagree with lighting the tank on fire if it's easy or normal. Too many times I see people scatter, unsure whether to shoot or run at that point when all the tank needs to die is 1 or 2 clips out of everyone's guns. Definitely use fire on advanced. The above post is good advice on expert. Another protip: the tank turns immediately to attack someone who gets on the gattling gun. And one more for the road - punch a tank to keep him from killing a downed survivor (he will turn on you, of course, so be ready.) srry necro post. –  robertpateii Oct 5 '10 at 7:13
    
Also, as a general tip, make sure your anti-tanks (auto-shottys) have pills/adrenaline ready to skirt the tank - the tank runs faster than them if their health is not in the green. The rifles should stay farther away, if possible, and keep infected away from the auto-shottys while sniping the tank (in the head if possible)... though if the tank targets you, run! –  BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft Nov 15 '10 at 17:07
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I disagree, you should absolutely set the tank on fire on expert. Not only can you navigate terrain more efficiently while running away, but if you maintain line of sight, the tank will stop periodically to throw a rock which buys a huge amount of time. –  SLC Mar 14 '12 at 15:20
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If you are knocked down by the tank stop shooting him. Your team can get his attention with a melee attack and pull him off you only if you are not continuing to hit him.

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The best way I found is to continually move and evade him and all he throws at you.

That, combined with heavy weapons, a molotov, and incendiary or explosive ammo does the trick pretty fast.
Try not to use a Boomer Vile as that will attract more common infected, making it more difficult to evade him.

Obviously, I don't recommend using melee weapons

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Boomer bile will help, but indeed only for a short moment (and better in versus). After the effect goes away, common infected turn to attack you. –  Gnoupi Jul 9 '10 at 5:58
    
Besides, melee weapon is not a so bad idea, because it deals a lot of damages. You have to not be alone for this to work, as you can hit him safely only if he focuses on something else (in the back, for example) –  Gnoupi Jul 9 '10 at 6:00
    
In versus it works great to have teammates use melee weapons on the tank's back while he's chasing you. The bot will realize it and turn around, but a human will likely take time to notice or have his teammates tell him to turn around. –  David Harkness May 19 '12 at 11:06
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Play a vs game until you become a tank. You will notice when you are lite on fire you don't stop. It will continually tick away at your health.

First step use a Molotov. Next aim for his head. His health will go down quicker when shooting at his head.

Keep moving and be AWARE of your surroundings. If you get trapped in a corner you are as good as dead.

Finally teamwork. You all have to work together (unless it is on easy then 1 person can do it.)

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AFAIK, in "normal" games, Tanks do not take damage from fire, but rather die after a certain amount of time passes while being on fire (Maybe 45 seconds for expert?) In vs. games, however, you have health, and fire works together with guns to bring them down faster. –  Raven Dreamer Nov 14 '10 at 21:30
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About melee weapons: Don't use them!!!

Unless (you need all the following points):

  • Your life value is green (or you have max-speed, due to adrenaline);
  • There is absolutely no small zombie around (you don't want them to stupidly stop you);
  • You don't have any ammo left.
  • You know how to run around the tank without being hit...

How to? If there are fixed (non-throwable) objects (like couch), run around them, while hitting the tank. He won't hit you, unless he manages to catch you.

No fixed objects? It will be harder...

  1. Run to about 1meter of tank.
  2. Wait for him to rise his arm.
  3. Begin to run aronud him. While he is trying to hit you, he will turn slower.
  4. Hit him, while trying not to be in front of him.
  5. ???
  6. PROFITS!

For those who play TF², it's similar to melee-killing a LVL3 sentry-gun.

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Chainsaw is your best friend on easy and normal. It deals 1000 damage/sec, and a tank has 4000 HP on normal. If you're lucky, sometimes he just stands there and takes it until he dies. It might not be the smartest way to deal with a tank, but it's fun… and that's the point of the game, no?

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Light him on fire + boomer vile + you and your teammates shooting him.

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The Boomer Vile will attract more common infected. I don't recommend it. –  jmfsg Jul 8 '10 at 23:31
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Pretty certain the parent means throwing the bile bomb on the tank itself. –  happy_soil Jul 9 '10 at 0:03
    
@happy, that attracts them also –  jmfsg Jul 9 '10 at 0:13
    
@Juan - it attracts them to the tank - they will fight it for you. It really does work. –  user113 Jul 9 '10 at 1:07
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@Jon - the problem is that once you get rid of the tank, or worse, when the bile effect wears off, they turn to attack you, generating more enemies in the end for you. I think that's what Juan meant. –  Gnoupi Jul 9 '10 at 5:53
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With 10v10 by far the best is to crowd the tank (preferably on fire) and have your entire team hitting him with baseball bats/swords/machettes etc, he will only be able to knock 1/2 your team down hopefully.

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You don't often play on 10Vs10 servers... –  Lysarion Feb 28 '11 at 12:58
    
While you are at it two boomers will jump in the middle, while the smokers and the rest of the infected team end the fun.. –  Bora Jul 12 '11 at 12:26
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if you use Adrenalin shots and melee weapons you can easily run around him and slice him up or you can use pump shotgun that deals 1000 damage to the tank.

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