Teamwork is key:
This is by far the most important rule of Left 4 Dead. If you are not working together as a team, you will not survive very long. Running ahead and not paying attention to where your teammates are is a great way to get yourself killed as well as everyone else on your team. Make it a point to always know where the other members of your team are and no matter how badly you think you know the superior route, travel as a group. Pretend there is a 10 foot rope connecting you and all your team mates and do the best you can to keep your ego in check. In Left 4 Dead, getting the most kills is not important, survival is. Keeping yourself and the ones around you alive should be your biggest priority.
Gun butting is your friend:
This seems to be one of the greatly over looked features of the game, which is greatly upsetting due to the fact that the ability to gun butt is just as important as the ability to fire your weapon, if not more so. Gun butting can be used in multiple situations to gain the upper hand, especially when it comes to special infected. as soon as you see a hunter or jockey leaping after you, instead of firing, start thrashing your weapon around like a mad man, while gun butting they will not be able to connect with you and if you strike at the right moment you will stun your enemy as well as push it back, this is a great opportunity to open fire and execute the kill. Boomers too close for comfort can be butted away for some breathing room, allowing you to back up, avoiding their bile and when being mobbed by a mass of zombies you can use your gun to push them back in the same fashion. Seriously people, gun butting is your friend, use it often.
Tank Killing 101:
If you play L4D this is a situation you know all too well, especially if you play on expert. All is going well and before you know it a massive monster is charging at you and throwing chunks or concrete aiming to render you helpless. Don't Panic! I myself used to get pretty frustrated when the tank would home in for the kill but you if handle them correctly you will find that they are really not all that difficult to dispatch. It is important to realize that when you still have the majority of your health, you run quite a bit faster than the tank. If you have not had a tank attack you yet it is important to have a member of your team equipped with a molotov. If you are playing with a bunch of strangers than take one for the team and carry one yourself. As soon as the tank is in sight lob your molotov at him and run away, that's right... run away. Take note of cover so you can use it to hide behind when the tank decides to throw and take pot shots when you are at a safe distance. The fire from the molotov will eat away at the tanks health at a rapid rate and the occasional cover fire will help this process along. Before you know it the tank will collapse into a flaming pile of flesh and your team will be on its merry way.
Be smart with your weapons:
Reloading often will help to make sure you don't fall into a sticky situation with an empty clip. Make sure that if you do run out of ammo in a hectic situation you switch to your side arm instead of reloading, this will get you back into the action much quicker. Shotguns are great weapons but they are best used to clear out large mobs of undead and should be only used in these situations due to the fact that they tend to run out of ammunition quite quickly. If you are using a shotgun, use your pistol for the majority of the time and when you find yourself surrounded or find that your path is blocked by an uncomfortable amount of infected, switch to the shotty and unload, this is a great way to dispatch a large group in a quick manner. I would not advise using the shotgun on the tank since it is much more effective at close range. Be sure to conserve your ammunition and use it wisely, being left with only your side arm can be detrimental to your health.
Crouching is a no brainer:
|This guys got the right idea...|
Crouching not only increases your accuracy but also allows people behind you to shoot at the zombies in front of you without hurting you in process. Unless you are in a situation where you need to be moving quickly there is no reason why you shouldn't be crouching.
Sharing is Caring (it can be fun):
I know its difficult to give away what you may need later, but really when it comes to L4D, helping others is helping yourself. It is significantly easier to wipe when you are only one man short. Next time you are at 65 health and are equipped with a health pack as well as a bottle of pills and one of your team members is seriously hurt, help them out. Not only does this keep one extra target in the game but it can be difficult to proceed at a steady pace when you have team members that are limping along at a snails pace.
This is a big one... it is important to realize that almost every bad event in the game comes with a sound to warn you and your team. Get to know these sounds and you will start to understand that you can hear that hunter coming far before he even gets a chance to lunge in for the kill!
Know your surroundings:
This is important for any shooter really and L4D is no exception to the rule. Getting familiar with the games campaigns can give you a great advantage. Understanding where solid corners are will help you in a situation where you have been hit with boomer bile or when an overwhelming horde of undead are rushing to rip you to shreds. Knowing the campaigns can also tip you off as to where tanks frequently spawn and where you can expect that extra ammunition to be when you are starting to run low. Knowing what is around you is very important when trying to survive in an efficient manner, so get out there, play and explore!
The Magnum is a powerful ally, though it may not provide you with as much ammunition as a regular pistol and doesn't shoot as fast a duel wielding, it does massive damage for a side arm and shoots through zombies hitting oncoming infected behind your target! In combination with a shotgun, the magnum can you help make you a serious threat to the undead.
So there you have it folks! If you were having trouble before this than using these tips will definitely help you on your way to becoming a zombie killing machine. For a little extra help I would advise you check out my weapon stats article, here. Happy hunting!