Left 4 Dead 2

Left 4 Dead 2

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Gold Miners L4D2 Survival Guide
By guyguy and 2 collaborators
This guide explains in-depth the various strategies used for survival mode in Left 4 Dead 2. It was originally for the Gold Miners group, an international group of survival players. The guide includes strategy explanations for each map and video examples.
Survival mode offers intense, challenging, and fun gameplay with plenty of replay value, however, there is a lot of teamwork and strategy required. The following guide is a continual work-in-progress to develop and improve strategies used to achieve gold medals and beyond on all the official Left 4 Dead 2 survival maps without relying on the use of glitches, exploits, or cheats. It is aimed at players of all skill levels although it is recommended that you find a team of like-minded individuals otherwise you may have some trouble achieving your goals.

Each map/strategy will include:
- Item information/count
- Positions (with visual representations)
- Notes of what to look out for & map-specific tips
- Videos relevant to each strategy


Special thanks to Licksore for editing this document and providing many of the map descriptions and also to Azimuth, sauce, TheKevSham, video content creators, and anyone else who has made contributions.
Core Concepts
Ammo Runs

There are breaks between waves of tanks. These breaks are opportunities for survivors to make a run to replenish their ammo at the ammo pile. The times are:

  • 1:30
  • 2:30 (optional)
  • 4:00
  • 6:00
  • 9:00
  • 12:00

These breaks are dependent upon what times the tanks spawn and die. If tanks spawn far away, they might interfere with ammo run breaks. Likewise if the tanks are not killed fast enough. After 12:00, the ammo runs are not set in stone, and tanks will come almost continuously.

Tank Spawns

  • 0:40
  • 1:55
  • 2:55
  • 4:25
  • 5:25
  • 5:35
  • 7:05
  • 7:45
  • 8:25
  • 10:05
  • 10:45
  • 11:20
  • 11:30
  • 12:50

After this point, the tank spawns are a little less consistent across maps and rounds, but play with the assumption that you will have 1-2 tanks per minute and expect that a tank could spawn at any time. Also note that the maximum number of tanks you can have at any one given time is 2, and the max for special infected (hunters, smokers, chargers, jockeys, spitters, & boomers) is 7.

When to heal

The correct time to heal is a subjective measure but it can greatly affect the outcome of the game.

Pills, Adrenaline, and Med-kits
Pills give temporary health but are applied instantaneously whereas med-kits give permanent health and take time. Med-kits should be used when health is low and there is sufficient time to heal. Pills should be used in times of emergency when you need an extra boost to prevent from getting incapacitated.

In L4D2, there is also the option of using adrenaline. Adrenaline gives instant boost to the speed of all actions of the survivor. It allows you to outrun special infected and pick up survivors faster. However, it does not give a great bonus to your health. The adrenaline should be saved for crucial times such as when multiple survivors are incapacitated or a quick escape is necessary. It should not be used for normal healing purposes.

Other things to keep in mind
  • General awareness is vital in L4D2. Be vigilant and aware of your surroundings, teammates, and incoming threats. Rely on the directional sound cues to find out where and when tanks spawn, if there are threats behind or just out of sight, and where teammates are if they're in trouble. Perhaps turn off the music to hear the infected better.
  • Map knowledge is arguably the most important factor in improving your record, and you gain map knowledge by simply playing the map repeatedly and learning the subtle nuances to each map and to each individual position. The more you play a map you will learn where infected spawn and the AI pathing, as well as item spawn locations, and the path of least resistance for supply runs as well as alternate paths if you're to be cut off by a tank.
  • Communicate if you're going to move or have an incoming threat like a tank on your side or you're in need of assistance.
  • You can continue to help your team once you're dead by watching your teammate's blind spots and calling out specials and their locations. Warn them of specials that could blind or down them. The round isn't over until everyone is dead, not just yourself.
Unlike L4D1, L4D2 features a variety of ranged weapons that can be effectively used in survival mode. Weapons with a high rate of fire significantly slow down tanks (e.g. M16, MAC-10). It's important to note that this was tested in close proximity to the tank.

Military Sniper
(30 rounds per magazine)
Shots needed to kill tank: 45

Use the scope to increase accuracy.

(40 rounds per magazine)
Shots needed to kill tank: 71

Highest damage per second of all assault rifles.

(50 rounds per magazine)
Shots needed to kill tank: 125

Fastest reload time of all assault rifles.

Tactical Shotgun
(10 rounds per magazine)
Shots needed to kill tank: 20

Because of its short range, it is ill-suited for a lot of the long-range maps. It's also capable of doing a max of 11 damage per shot in friendly fire.

Melee Weapons

In L4D2, players have the option to use a melee weapon instead of pistols as their secondary. The benefit of using a melee weapon is the ability to quickly clear infected. Excluding the chainsaw, all melee weapons are capable of killing infected with the same number of hits.

Commons, hunters, smokers, boomers, spitters, and jockeys: 1 hit
Chargers: 2 hits
Tanks: 20 hits

Sharp melee weapons such as the axe and crowbar allow you to save yourself from smokers by cutting the tongue. Ping, lerp, and distance are factors you need to take into consideration when timing your tongue cuts, but it is definitely a useful skill you should learn!

Weapon Spawns

Weapon spawns allow players to pick up a new gun to replenish their ammo. If you're camping at a weapon spawn, you can quickly pick up that weapon again rather than reloading your gun, in a fashion known as spamming.
Mall Atrium

Mall Atrium is a unique map because of its design. It has three floors accessible to the survivors, and therefore gives players the most mobility in terms of effective strategies. There are two ways to play this map: running laps and holding. Running laps involves running from the tanks in a counterclockwise circuit, while holding is like the other traditional strategies where the players try to kill everything.

Item Information

Running Laps

This is perhaps the most famous strategy in Left 4 Dead 2, and the most playable for solo runs and disorganized public games. It involves running through the map in a counterclockwise circuit from the tanks.

It is unnecessary to kill the tanks that are chasing you because when executed properly, the tanks will never catch up with the survivors. In fact, it is recommended that you refrain from killing tanks as you are more likely to be cut off by fresh tank spawns along the path. Regardless if you light or shoot them, tanks will often die on their own after a short time. They seldom get stuck somewhere and can then be killed with 1 shot.

The circuit strategy can be done with just one player, and even without weapons if the player is skilled enough to avoid tanks and special infected.


Any weapon is suitable for the circuit strategy, but some weapons have their advantages...

Sniper Rifle:
This weapon is great for saving teammates after you've gotten split up and if you're a skilled sniper, you can use it to kill any special infected, except for Chargers, with one headshot. However, it has a 3-second reload time and is very inaccurate while running.
M-16 Assault Rifle:
This weapon is good for all situations. It has a short reload time and can quickly clear zombies in your path. Shoot in bursts to maintain accuracy while aiming at infected that are far away.
Tactical Shotgun:
This weapon is excellent for running because it doesn't lose accuracy while you move and because of its powerful spread, you're able to mow through zombies and special infected that stand in your way. The disadvantage is its extremely short range; you cannot quickly save teammates that have gotten separated.

The following is an explanation of the circuit strategy.

The starting position is on the third floor in the wooded area commonly referred to as the "saferoom". The players wait for the tanks to reach them. The tanks might come from the front or the back. Once the tank is there, the players go through the hole in the floor and begin the circuit.

The main path is shown by the solid arrow. An emergency escape route to the first floor is shown by the dashed arrow.

Continuing the circuit on the second floor. Two emergency escape routes are shown.

Moving from the second floor to the first floor. An emergency escape route is shown.

Run counterclockwise through the second floor. The tanks will likely not catch up to you because they stop to throw rocks. Replenish ammo at the second floor and then drop onto the scaffolding, which leads to the first floor.

Finishing the circuit back up to the third floor.

If required, run to the information kiosk to get supplies. Run to the stairs that carry you to the third floor and reach the starting position. Now the team has completed the circuit and they are ready to wait for the approaching tanks and restart the circuit.


Tank Escape Routes by AnGeR
Mall Atrium (continued)
Standard Bridge Hold
Players hold the third floor bridge with the ammo pile.

- 1 player left (by the ammo pile)
- 2 players middle, on the bridge
- 1 player right (at the top of the stairs)

M-16s or Sniper Rifles are heavily recommended. It's helpful that at least one person uses the M-16 to slow down the tanks. Players on the left and right may want to use the M-16 to better handle the common infected.

The left player should use a melee weapon to cut smoker tongues. This player clears the left side when a tank from the right is being led across the bridge. S/he is also responsible for leading the tanks from the left across the bridge and baiting rocks.

The two middle players should be doing the most damage to the tanks because they shouldn't have as many commons to deal with (if the players on the outside are doing their jobs). They should also warn the outer players of the locations of tanks and other specials coming.

When a tank is being led across the bridge from the left to the right, the right-side player guarding the stairs should continue to clear the stairs and right to provide a clear path.


Saferoom Hold
Many players refer to the third floor enclosed area as the saferoom. This is more of a hybrid strategy because it involves both running and killing the tanks.

- 1 sniper front-left (A)
- 1 sniper front-right (B)
- 1 sniper front-middle (C)
- 1 shotgunner back (D)

It is recommended that all players use Magnums as their secondary to stretch out time between ammo runs.

Front-left player leads the tanks into the room and kites them around the hole. If the tank is in the back, this player continues guarding the front.

The other front players have to back up sooner so as not to aggro any of the tanks. They should use their Magnums until the tanks come.

Front-middle is a swivel position that turns around and helps with the back when needed. S/he should have their sniper out at all times and focus on specials and tanks instead of commons.

The back player should use their shotgun the whole time. There aren't many commons in the back and they need to be ready for jockeys and chargers. It's best not to stay right up against the back wall because jockeys will fall on your head instantly. This player is responsible for kiting tanks from the back around the hole. When tanks come into the room from the front, the back player continues guarding the back instead of helping with the tank.

  • Grab ammo together on the third floor bridge during the regular ammo breaks. After 12 mins, run a lap together when the next tank comes if you need ammo.
  • Main threats: spitters, tanks in the front & back simultaneously, chargers and jockeys from the back.
  • Deploy special ammo in the room and save it for emergencies only.
  • Store gas cans between the crevasse or in the closet closest to the saferoom. The back player and 1 front player should be in charge of grabbing cans for the front and back when returning from a lap. Flame the front if there are 2 tanks in the front.
  • Run a lap if there are 2 tanks in the back, or 2 close fresh tanks in the front, or you're sandwiched.


    60 & 79 Minute Rounds by Lone Wolf McQuade
    71 Minutes by Licksore
This map contains many small rooms that are part of the motel. However, these rooms are very difficult to hold out in because of the cramped spacing. The better choice is the more spacious area at the corner of the map by the street.

Item Information


- 1 sniper on the right (A)
- 2 snipers in the middle (B & C)
- 1 sniper on the left by the gas cans (D)

Ammo runs can be tough on this map, so pistols as secondaries are recommended.

The player on the left (D) should be much closer to the truck than the others so that tanks and other infected funnel in towards him. S/he has the best view of tanks from the right side where the radio is. This player is responsible for tossing a gas can in the front for the double tanks, or during every tank if your team is having trouble taking them down quickly.

Players on the right can see tanks and specials coming from the pool area. They also need to be careful of tanks and specials that climb over the bushes on the right.

  • Most of the tanks come from the front somewhere, either from the front-right or between the bus and truck cab.
  • For the first 12 minutes, it is possible to go for ammo runs at the pile on the ground behind the bus.
  • After 12:00, players will have to run a circuit to the ammo pile at the top of the building.
  • It's important not to be slow during these runs and don't let anyone fall behind. Once you grab ammo drop down and you should be heading back to your holdout. Hold until you need ammo again. Start running for ammo when you have 30 or less shots.
  • This map has 6 bile jars on it, so use them wisely to run the circuit safely, pick up an incapped player, or to defib someone.


    73 Minutes by Eph
Stadium Gate
This section is slightly outdated. With the use of the rooftop strategy the AI have trouble pathfinding, so teams now hold the scaffolding pictured above... [under construction]

Item Information

- 1 player at the left on the rooftop (A)
- 2 players middle on the rooftop (B & C)
- 1 player right on the rooftop (D)

Soon the team will be overrun by tanks and you'll have to fall back to the AK-47 spawn.

All 4 players can stay close enough to the gun spawn to avoid reloading.

[UNDER CONSTRUCTION] There are two very effective strategies you can use on this map. One is to hold the stage, which gets rather chaotic due to the infected pouring in from all directions, and the other is to hold the bleachers+scaffolding in front of the stage.

Some people know that you can sit on top of ladders to block commons (and some specials) from climbing, so I just want to note that while common infected are easy to kill, they serve an important role and it's the combination of an endless horde+special infected that make the game challenging. You'd be cheating yourself by playing this way; players should train themselves to listen for infected sounds and shove without getting fatigued.

One player was on the sniper spawn scaffolding and did not block any ladders. The three other players played near the 2 medkits at the top of the bleachers. We played this way for the majority of the round but the first 9 mins we defended the stage in hopes of a better special infected count. Common infected may be funneled in by the guard rails near those 2 medkits so that one player is free of horde to focus on the tanks/SI while the other 2 focus on not letting common in.


(Front is facing the stage from the top of the bleachers)

  • 1 Player on the scaffolding spamming the sniper, shooting in all directions (A).
  • 1 Player is on the right funnel guard rail focusing the right and protecting the scaffolding player (also referred to as the back) (B).
  • 1 Player is on the 2 medkits shooting in all directions (middle) (C).
  • 1 Player is on the left funnel guard rail focusing the left (front) (D).


  • The player guarding the back controls most of the gascans \& fireworks (which we store on top of the vending machines), this player also warns the tower player if anything is climbing up behind them or shoots anything climbing up behind them when they have time as well.
  • The middle player watches every side and helps out the front-side player a lot, as well as shooting the tanks coming from all directions.
  • The front player gets a lot of horde coming in, and lots of tanks come to the front as well. The tanks should mostly be dead by the time they reach the 3 players because the front and tower players should be chipping them. The front player also lays out gascans and fireworks on their side.
  • All players are using military sniper rifles, when it's clear the 3 players on the bleachers grab ammo from the sniper spawn and quickly get back to their spots.
  • The scaffolding player must be a stronger sniper with endurance to spam at the maximum speed the entire round.
  • The horde must be funneled in and prevented from slipping past for the ground players.
  • The ground players primarily used a military sniper to prevent running to the far ammo pile at the stage.
  • When a player is down, a throwable must be used to pick that player up safely.
  • Gascans are a great way to kill a horde or light an unchipped tank.
  • Since the middle ground player is mostly free of horde that player must be focusing the tanks and SI while helping with the horde when possible.
  • If the tank climbs up the scaffolding warn that player to escape before it's too late.
  • Don't wait until you're out of ammo to get a new sniper, grab one when you're on your last clip or after a double tank.
  • Calling the direction in which the tank is coming from will give you the best results, so construct your own front and back before the round starts so no one is confused.
  • If 2 or more players die it's best to run around the perimeter of the map to stretch a couple mins.
  • Lots of spitters target the player on the scaffolding, so when there's spit just jump on the railing until the spit is gone.


Gator Village
This map is unique because most of the supplies are located on the barge which arrives about 2 minutes into the round. First aid kits are also known to respawn after they've been used. For the first 2 minutes, hold by the picnic table and use the M-16 or Shotgun. Your main threats at this time are chargers and tanks because they can charge or punch you into the water which means instant death!

Item Information


- 1 player left bench (A)
- 2 players middle (B & C)
- 1 player right bench (D)

All players use the Sniper Rifle which is located on the barge. With the Sniper Rifle spawn being practically at your feet, you never have to reload, just pick up a new gun to replenish ammo. Players should be shooting constantly. If you see movement, shoot!

The player on the right deals the most damage to the tanks because he has the best view. Other players have their view obstructed in most cases.

The outside players (A & D) will be getting smoked the most, but they can't be pulled off of the barge. The players on the inside should be quick to shove them or shoot the smoker's tongue. The outside players are usually the tank's target when he throws rocks, so they should always try to dodge (although everyone should just in case).

Don't bother lighting tanks; it's important that everyone uses the short time the team has to shoot tanks before they reach the barge. You need to deal with spitters immediately, but if there's spit in the holdout, run to the opposite side of the barge or hop on top of one of the benches till it's clear.

  • Main threats: tanks coming from the left & front, spitters, chargers, and jockeys.
  • In the case of two tanks, the right player can chip at the second tank while the main players deal with the first (closest) tank.
  • Since the left-most player has easy access to the sniper, he should be killing the most common infected. Infected mostly come from the right side, so they'll easily be running through his line of fire.
  • Dodging rocks is important but harder to pull off since you are enclosed in such a tiny area. You can try baiting tanks to throw rocks at the poles of the barge.


    120 Minutes by Licksore
    73 Minutes by Psy
[Under contruction] Unfortunately, the best place to hold out is not at the machine gun... ;-)

Players hole up in the house upstairs and need to be extra quick at taking out spitters as there isn't much room to back out of goo. For the strategy used here it's helpful to have players on your team that are skilled at kiting tanks.

Item Information


- 1 player using long-range at the front (D)
- 3 players at the back using shotguns (A, B, & C)

  • The back players use shotguns so that they can kill tanks while they are climbing.
  • If the tank has reached the back, which is not uncommon because of spit, and spawn locations, the back players retreat to the stairs where they lead the tank around the hole (hole dance).
  • The back players have to be wary of spit and smokers.
  • When a tank attacks the front, the front player should notify the three back players. Two of the back players should run to the stairs to assist in killing the tank. One player should remain to guard the front side.
  • In cases where the front player needs assistance, the back players can shoot through the floorboards.

One of the weaknesses of this strategy is that the back players are vulnerable to spitters. They have to retreat back towards the stairs whenever the spit occurs.

Hole Dance

The hole dance in plantation is identical to the hole dance performed during the mall saferoom hold strategy. The player walks back and forth across the hole, causing the tank to follow him but never reach him. It is sometimes tricky to determine which player the tank is actually chasing (he should do the hole dance) and also the tank might take a swipe at times and graze the player.

Ammo Runs

The ammo is located across the hall from the back players. They can be hazardous because you might get cut-off by tanks and special infected will tend to drop from the roof to attack you. To prevent the specials from dropping in ambush, players should press against the wall while going for ammo so that they are not visible from the roof.

After twelve minutes, there are constant tanks appearing because the tanks take a long time to reach the survivors. If the tanks are killed fast enough, there will be lulls in the action and the survivors will be able to go for ammo. Having extra guns available is helpful, especially for the front player, who is farthest from the ammo.


Sugar Mill
Unless your team juggled items, you're going to have to do your best to avoid damage because the supplies are quite difficult to reach on this map mid-round!


  • 1 player by the ammo pile spamming the SCAR and shotgun (A)
  • 2 players behind the back of the truck using sniper rifles. Some people play it with 1 crouched in the front and 1 standing behind them, but friendly fire seemed to be a problem as the player in the front crouching moves a bit and gets in the back player's line of fire while moving. So the 2 truck players crouched side by side. (B \& C)
  • 1 player watching the back and helping with tanks in the front if the back is clear. (D)


  • When we had doubles and the tanks were coming in close, we backed up to the dead end.
  • It is important for the front bait player to dodge rocks. It's particularly the rocks coming from the left-side tanks that we seemed to have some trouble with.
  • The back player can have some pretty smooth moves. She can manipulate the tank to chase her in a circle on the corner of the concrete. She can make it climb up then come back down and climb up again a couple of times. It buys the survivors a little bit of time if they also have zombies to deal with in the front.
  • The front bait player usually gets spat on, so it's very important for them to back up in time to not take damage, and for the 2 truck snipers to warn him of the specials and rocks coming from the front.
  • Sometimes specials and even tanks will drop on you.
  • Health and throwables were moved and stored in the back dead-end corner, because the previous attempt before this we had a boomer in the back explode and all our supplies blew away.


Burger Tank


  • One player on the front left (A)
  • One player front middle (B)
  • One player front right (C)
  • One player on the chimney (D)

All players are using the sniper rifle and replenishing ammo at the sniper spawn. All of the players need to be proficient at the sniper rifle because it is a very difficult map. The left player is controlling most of the horde that climbs up on the left side and also watching for any special infected climbing the left side of the building. The other front players are dealing with the zombies they encounter and also shooting the tanks. The back player is watching over all of the other players, keeping the zombies from attacking them from behind. The back player also has to watch the back side for special infected that sometimes come from the back or from up the ladder.


  • There are a lot of health items, particularly medkits, on this map. There is no need to use the health sparingly.
  • Burger tank has a frantic pace after twelve minutes. It is very difficult to keep control of the roof.
  • There are two bile jars that should be saved for emergencies.
  • The gascans should be stored in a place where they will not be destroyed. Some good places are in the corner by the left player and on the side by the right player.


Bus Depot

This map has riot zombies which are immune to all frontal attacks so you must shoot them in the back. They sometimes drop nightsticks. The weakness of this strategy is that when players fall off the fence or scaffolding, it can be difficult to recover.

- 1 sniper on the scaffolding, focusing on the back (A)
- 1 sniper on the light, next to the sniper spawn (B)
- 1 sniper at the other end of the scaffolding, focusing on the roof (C)
- 1 player on the fence, focusing on the front (D)

The snipers in the back and on the light should be able to deal with tanks in the back with little help from the other 2 players. They also have the option of using the Silenced SMG sometimes since it's right next to their positions, but should use snipers for the majority of the time to deal damage to the tanks while they are far away.

The fence player has the hardest position. S/he must be skilled at kiting tanks, and dodging or skeeting rocks thrown by tanks. To dodge rocks s/he will have to run on top of the tarp. It may be good for this player to use a melee weapon that can cut smoker tongues. This player has to walk across the fence onto the tarp and jump to retrieve ammo from the sniper spawn located in the tower next to players A and B.

Players on the scaffolding have to take out chargers and smokers immediately.

  • All players use the sniper spawn to replenish their ammo.
  • Main threats for players on the scaffolding: chargers, jockeys, smokers, and tanks.
  • Main threats for the player on the fence: jockeys, smokers, and tanks (and rocks they throw).
  • In the case of double tanks sandwiching the players, the players need to focus on the closest tank and kill it first.
  • Good communication is essential for this strategy because during double tanks, the focus of the players are split between the two tanks.
  • According to statistics, the back players are doing the brunt of the damage to the tanks.
  • Use throwables to recover if a teammate falls or gets pulled out of position.
  • Special infected will sometimes move from the back through the narrow alley to the front. In this case, the back players give warning.


    91 Minutes by Licksore

This is the easiest map to play in all the maps of Left 4 Dead and Left 4 Dead 2. It is possible to last on this map indefinitely. The longest players have lasted here is five hours, with the rounds ending due to exhaustion.

If the players are able to last times longer than 20 minutes, it should be visibly noticeable that the amount of special infected will decrease. This is because they get stuck in the far corners of the map. For this reason, the map, like every survival map, becomes slowly easier over time and people are able to last on this map indefinitely.


All players are lined up upstairs by the M16 spawn on the floor.


  • The only weapon that is necessary to this strategy is the M16. There is no need to bring up extra weapons such as grenade launchers, SCARs, etc.\ from the first floor. The M16 at the top floor has unlimited ammo (due to the weapon spawn) and it is powerful while being sprayed continuously.
  • Although the strategy is easy and straightforward, the players still have to be careful not to take too much unecessary damage. Although the positions are stationary by the ammo pile much of the time, the players still have to move to avoid the spit, chargers, and tank rocks that are thrown at them.
  • There should be one player that is dedicated to checking the back. It is rare that zombies will come from the back, however, they need to be cleared out before they cause disruption to the front players. Also tanks might come from the back. In this case, the back tanks should be dealt with quickly so that the players can continue to focus on the incomig front waves.
  • In some cases, e.g., being attacked by double tanks, the survivors will start to get overwhelmed. In this case, retreat back to the tents and finish off the tanks. You will have to advance back to the gun spawn in order to get ammo.
  • Make sure that the positioning allows for all of the players to reach the weapon spawn.



Extra medkits are dropped by special survivor zombies.


  • 3 snipers along the back hedges (A, B, \& C)
  • 1 player with shotgun or M16 as bait (D)
The bait player is positioned far forward near the chokepoint of the gazebo.


  • The bait player has the most difficult job and needs strong backup from the snipers. Since she has sniper support, she does not need to be playing near the rest of the team, but should be far up front by the chokepoint.
  • When the tank is from the left or from the right side, two of the snipers should move positions to go and kill the tank quickly. There should be one sniper remaining to keep covering the bait player.
  • The back players should be using the throwables and sending the gascans up towards the chokepoint to support the bait player.

Bait Strategy

When confronted with tanks, the bait player has a number of options to try to avoid them.
  • Make sure that as you back up, there are no obstacles in the way.
  • You can jump on the speakers to reach the tents, causing the tanks to climb.
  • You can jump on the hedges and even on the back fence of the hedges, causing the tanks to climb.
  • You can run around the tree to have the tanks chase you. However, this is sometimes difficult to accomplish.

Ammo Run Strategy
  • Up to twelve minutes, the ammo runs can be obtained at the normal times.
  • After twelve minutes, the ammo has to be obtained when it is safe. It's difficult to determine when there are lulls in the tank spawns, but at that point, the survivors should quickly run to the gazebo (using throwables if necessary), and replenish their ammo.


Underground AKA Bedlam


The players are cramped into the corner that is fenced off by construction fencing. The positions are approximately:

  • One player standing on the water meter. (A)
  • One player standing on the fence. (B)
  • Two players furthest back. (C \& D)

All players are using sniper rifles.


  • The snipers need to be able to kill the tanks before they reach them. Once the tanks reach the players, it can be disastrous.
  • To avoid the spit, one of the players is positioned farther forward than the other ones. The front player can jump on the water meter in order to avoid taking damage from the spit.
  • The ammo is close-by and ammo runs should be done in-between tanks.
  • The front player has to be careful about the smokers from below.
  • Eventually there will be survivor zombies appearing that drop some extra medkits. The snipers should wait for the survivor zombies to get close before killing them so that the extra medkits can be retrieved.
  • Tank rocks can be difficult to avoid in this position. The rocks will go through the fencing. The survivors have to make small movements so that the tanks will overcompensate and miss when they throw.


Port (Passing)

Although there are two versions of the map that are almost identical, they use different strategies. In this version of port, the survivors are supplied with more medkits and there is only one ammo pile.

Warehouse Strategy


  • One player on the boxes as the bait (A)
  • Three players against the wall (B, C, \& D)


  • The bait player has by far the most difficult job. It's very easy for him to lose all of his health due to mistakes. If multiple people on the team are experienced at playing the bait spot, this position should be rotated between the players.
  • The bait player should avoid spit either by pressing against the wall or hanging over the edge of the boxes. In some cases, this may not work and the spit will get ontop of the box. In that case, the bait player should quickly leave the boxes and join with the other survivors against the wall.
  • The bait player can try to avoid getting pulled by killing the smokers quickly or by blocking the smoker tongue with the poles.
  • The bait player should try to dodge the tank rocks or break them against any of the poles if possible.
  • The players should try to use pistols when there are relatively few zombies. This is so that the ammo can be conserved.
  • The ammo runs can be dangerous and should be avoided if possible. After twelve minutes, it is very difficult to make runs for the ammo.
  • Usually, there is a boomer on the second floor of the warehouse waiting for the survivors to get ammo. If the bait player can position himself correctly, he will be able to see the boomer and shoot it throught he ceiling. If a player is boomed during the ammo run, the ammo run will become dangerous.




  • 2 players on left boat (A \& B)
  • 2 players on right boat (C \& D)
  • Positions are not fixed after 12 minutes


  • We stay on top of the two boats in the middle. Some care must be taken to prevent damage when the boats break.
  • Retreat to the corner of the map once the tank/zombies make the boats too hectic. (This corner is the spot commonly used in L4D1 traincar)
  • We got a moderate supply of bile jars during this run. The bile drops are random; sometimes you can collect over 12 bile jars during the first 12 minutes.
  • Bile lasts about 20 seconds. It can alleviate you from the horde and special infected.
  • In this attempt we threw the bile jars on the ground near the ammo. The reasoning is to syphon the zombies to one spot, so more bile can be collected. Another possibility is to throw the bile on the tanks.
  • AK47 with laser sights is very powerful and accurate. It takes only 1 bullet to kill a zombie.
  • 1 designated player threw most of the bile on the ground to draw the horde of commons. It also allowed us to collect more bile.
  • If I remember, we had a moderate amount of bile before 12 minutes but gained a constant supply after 12 minutes.
  • Occasionally, bile was thrown on tanks during dangerous times.
  • We retreated to the corner as the tank approached, but had problems with friendly fire during this time
  • Dodging rocks helped preserve health and allowed us to take minimal damage from tanks
  • We waited until about red health to heal. We used about 1 or 2 medkits by the time of 12 minutes.


Port (Sacrifice)

Front is facing the lower level of the bar.

  • 1 Player front left (A)
  • 1 Player front middle (B)
  • 1 Player front right (C)
  • 1 Player back (D)

  • We hold for the first 12 minutes to collect bile jars. Running the circuits occurs after 12 minutes.
  • If the front players are positioned properly, the tank from the front will always climb to the second floor, making him an easy target.
  • The back player must be alert for specials dropping off the roof and climbing the nearby fence. It may be tempting to go outside the room, but I find that it is a risk to go outside where it is hard for your teammates to save you.
  • 3 players should shoot the tank and 1 player should cover the remaining side. Using fire to help cover is very useful.
  • The circuit starts from the pool room where we bile the tank and run usually out the back.
  • Once everyone has met up in the second building (warehouse), we wait for the tank and bile it again for the return trip to the pool room. There is a good chance that more bile can be found on the way through the circuit.
  • If you run out of bile jars, substitute with pipe bombs.
  • The back player may have to use 1 medkit within 12 minutes. The rest of the medkits must be used during the run.


Generator Room

Since the map is glitchy, many specials get stuck at an unreachable place during long games. The spitters getting stuck will greatly aid your team. However, we think the SI counts are reasonable enough.


  • 2 players at the front
  • 2 players at the back pressed up against the railing


  • The map will either spawn with laser sights or special ammo. The laser sights increase accuracy and make the AK47 very powerful, whereas the special ammo allow you to move the spare medkits to the top floor if desired. Using the laser sights seemed to help us save health even more than spare medkits would.
  • The back players are pressed up against the railing so that spit will bounce off of them. We did not need to worry about this after the spitters got stuck.
  • The tanks at the ground floor tend to throw rocks at the back players and the tanks at the top floor tend to throw rocks at the front players. The players need to be positioned to avoid taking damage from rocks.
  • In the case of double tanks, we approximately had the 2 front players focus on the closest tank while the back two players focused on the second tank.
  • Occasionally tanks will either spawn at the rear or jump out the window and run through the rear. These tanks are quite dangerous and should be dealt with quickly.
  • We went for ammo at frequently at convenient times instead of when our ammo was low.



Circuit Strategy

In this strategy, the players run along the outer parameter of the rooftop map. The circuit can be done in both directions, either clockwise or counter-clockwise. It is generally looked down upon because the map is very buggy and eventually tanks and other special infected will get stuck as they chase the survivors. There will occasionally be spitter spit that appears due to the running, in which case the survival time might not be saved at the end of the round.

Shotgun Spawn Strategy
This strategy uses almost the identical positioning from the positioning in Left 4 Dead.


  • Two players by shotgun spawn (A \& B)
  • One player by the shotgun spawn watching the back (C)
  • One player on the building with the mounted gun (bait) (D)

Since the AK-47 is so powerful, it is suggested that the AK-47s are used. Although the shotgun spawns could also be utilized, the range of the shotguns is inappropriate for helping the bait player and dealing with tanks and specials from afar.


  • The bait player needs to use the mounted gun to divert the tank's attention away from the other support players. However, this spot is very dangerous for the bait player. The support players need to provide strong backup and quickly deal with the tanks.
  • The circuit strategy can be used occasionally to recover from very bad situations. The players should complete about one lap and then fight to regain their positions.
  • Zombies will rarely attack from the back. The player watching the back can divert his attention to the front when the back sides are clear.

Back Strategy


  • Three players on the isolated platform (A, B, \& C)
  • One player moving in between the vents (bait) (D)


  • A variation of this strategy is to use two players on the vents. This strategy is also effective.
  • This strategy has some problems in that the amount of zombies that are attacking can be very overwhelming.
  • The back players on the isolated platform have to be very wary of incoming hunters and chargers. Firstly, most of the special infected need to be attacking the bait player. When they attack the back players, it's possible that the players will be stumbled off the platform.
  • Smokers and spitters are problematic when they start to attack the survivors on the platform. The back players have to be very sharp and alert so that they kill them before they have a chance to damage the survivors.


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(L4D2U)BizzareAtom Jun 30, 2016 @ 12:02am 
for parish, where you show the positions, A and B should be over torwards the right alot more(just enought to spawn that M-16) .because if you dont and hold out on the jeep, the specials will come over torwards the left.
(L4D2U) Gets Deathcharged Jul 5, 2015 @ 3:55pm 
For Mall Atrium, the Combat Rifle (aka Desert Rifle, Burst Rifle) isn't even discussed. It is my personal favorite choice for the bridge hold because it is more accurate than the M16 and has a larger clip to improve damage dealing capabilities before a reload is necessary (it's a difference of ~1500 damage to ~2500 damage per magazine for each gun, very big difference against a 4000 hp tank).
Dr. Dapper Jan 28, 2014 @ 3:29pm 
Trying to find out how the holdout mutation works, all i got was this...there's no guns on holdout. none.
$ilv3r Jun 17, 2013 @ 11:36am 
Thx for this very useful guide, i discovered it today :)
Neko Ayakashi Feb 5, 2013 @ 12:51am 
Awesome guide! I like your guide, it's perfectly well done. Great work.
:SH: J.T. Run And Gun Feb 1, 2013 @ 11:21pm 
Look forward to gaming again Bob. Justintime
Nazrall || Sтeaм Controller Feb 1, 2013 @ 8:55pm 
good work
Nazrall || Sтeaм Controller Feb 1, 2013 @ 8:55pm 
Nice guide sir!
Gutshot ۞ ۞ ۞۞ ۞۞۞ Feb 1, 2013 @ 2:41pm 
WOW now that is a lot of info, very nice work champ
das.scoot Jan 31, 2013 @ 7:46pm 
Very informative, nice job!