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The Tank

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"Run or shoot?... RUN OR SHOOT?!"
"Why can't that thing be on our side?"

The Tank is a Special Infected that is arguably the most powerful among the Infected in the game, along with the Witch.[1] Unless the team works together to take the Tank down, it can wipe out the whole team single-handedly, or with the assistance of other Special Infected.

Appearance Edit

Extent of Mutations Edit

Tank Sacrifice

The Tank as it appears in The Sacrifice at The Docks.

The Tank is an exclusively male Special Infected who has experienced the most extensive physical mutations of any other class of Special Infected. The most obvious trait is his extreme hypertrophy, or abnormally increased muscle mass. Despite his enormous bulk, the Tank is incredibly fast and agile, able to keep up with even a healthy Survivor.

This abnormal muscular growth is most obvious in his arms and upper body but less pronounced around the Tank's waist, hips, and legs. Though the Tank's legs are capable of supporting his static weight (such as when the Tank mounts a rock throwing attack), the Tank's disproportionate anatomy forces him to knuckle-walk, resulting in the Tank's wrists becoming swollen.

The Tank's body is covered with numerous scars and lesions from previous fights, with an especially large open sore on his left pectoral. The Tank's jaw at first glance seems to be missing, but upon closer inspection it is shown to be enveloped within his thick neck muscles.[2] It can be assumed his bones have become stronger too, otherwise the Tank's skeleton would have collapsed under the weight of his own body; this is supported by that shooting the Tank's head will not put him down any quicker, hinting that the reinforced bone of skull has prevented the projectiles from penetrating.

The increased muscle mass serves as both the Tank's weapon and armor. As a weapon, the muscle give the Tank superhuman strength; a punch from a Tank is enough to send Survivors or large objects such as cars flying meters away, destroy weaker structures, or rip rock or concrete off the ground. Alternatively, it serves as the Tank's defensive body armor, protecting his vital organs from gunfire. The Tank can absorb significant punishment from any and all weapons, making it next to impossible to prevent him from dealing damage.

Tank Symbol

The United States Marine Corps symbol on the left side of the Sacrifice Tank's chest, instead of the regular gaping chest wound.

The Tank has also suffered either heavy brain damage or a rabies-like cerebral infection, resulting in the Tank being in a constant state of unbridled rage, even more so than most other Infected; his immediate response is to attack any human Survivor on sight. Once the Tank has fixed a target, nothing short of death can stop him; bullets and explosives will not make him flinch, fire only slows him down (unless playing campaign in Left 4 Dead), and the sound of pipe bombs and car alarms won't distract him (ironically enough, though, in the Left 4 Dead intro, it is a car alarm that alerts a Tank). The Tank will even smash down doors, knock away obstacles, and plow through entire crowds of Infected just to bare down on an unlucky Survivor he has chosen as a target.

It is presumed that the energy it costs to run the Tank's enormous body is too much, so that he must wait until the Survivors move close or start attacking to accumulate energy. However, when the Tank is completely trapped, unable to find a way to reach his target, or hasn't hit any Survivor for too long after starting a fight, he automatically dies due to frustration. It is hinted that his death is either by energy exhaustion, or by some incretion which kills him if he hasn't hit a Survivor for too long in the fight. This makes the Tank the only Infected that technically needs to kill Survivors to survive. It is also hinted that the Tank will always die once he starts fighting, because eventually he will suffer from lack of Survivors to kill once they have all fled or died, providing they failed to kill him.

Tanks in Left 4 Dead fixate on a single Survivor at a time, pursuing this person until they are dead whereupon they switch the focus of their attacks to a second victim. While unfortunate for the victim, it provides an excellent opportunity for teammates to counterattack. Tanks in the first volume also only spawn singly and at fairly predictable times and locations, often betraying their presence by uttering distinctive growls and arm flapping movements from behind their places of partial concealment.

Once in attack mode, their growls increase in intensity and frequency and the ground begins to shake with their foot treads. Since Tanks lack fine motor agility, a skilled Survivor can dodge around structures and through windows to evade direct attack, open the distance and fight back. A Tank is especially dangerous when the Survivors are ambushed by one in a tight chokepoint (such as the subway carriages in No Mercy).

The Tank received a variation skin in The Sacrifice at a specific location in The Docks. The Tank is shaven bald, has jean shorts, surgical scars, missing front teeth, bare-feeted, a Marine Corps tattoo on his chest, and what appears to be some sort of leather restraints around his wrists. His hands and forearms are covered with fresh blood.

Left 4 Dead 2Edit

Tank 2

The Tank as he appears in Left 4 Dead 2.

The Tank is now completely bald, and his flesh has become raw and red from constant sun exposure along with the usual wear and tear. The open sores present before are now much larger and appear to be festering. It should also be noted that while in Left 4 Dead, the Tank's lower jaw can barely be seen, in Left 4 Dead 2, the Tank's lower jaw is now completely absorbed by his muscle and only the tongue flops out. The Tank's hands are smaller and less swollen, and his vertebrae are less pronounced than in the first game.[3]

The Tank's behavior has also been modified to focus on all of the Survivors, giving it a more devastating effect. Instead of focusing on one Survivor until they are dead, the Tank will attack whoever is closest and will not kill an incapacitated Survivor if there are healthy ones nearby, which makes it extremely difficult on Expert, as a Tank can easily wipe out an entire team in seconds. When this happens, a healthier Survivor can use their faster speed (if not, adrenaline) to distract the Tank while the others rescue the incapacitated Survivors. If the Tank cannot reach or find any other Survivors, he will pound the ones that he can reach. The Tank can also pound incapacitated Survivors if he is surrounded by healthy ones, although he can attack those healthy Survivors instead.

Custom created TanksEdit

Football Tank

The custom Tank featured in Suicide Blitz 2.

These Tanks' appearances have been altered and designed to fit into some custom campaigns and maps of certain community-based campaigns not originally made by Valve. The map creators are able to alter the Tank's appearance to be more fitting for the campaign and environment the Tank is to be seen.

Suicide Blitz 2Edit

This Tank featured in this custom campaign appears only on the finale map, The Stadium, where the Survivors have entered the Fort Harris County football stadium. The Tanks here appear to be former players of the Fort Harris County Bandits as they are seen wearing a torn jersey, football helmet, and football shorts. The custom Tank also appears in an Easter Egg section of Suicide Blitz 2, though players do not fight him there.

Soldier Tank

The custom Tank featured in Urban Flight.

Urban FlightEdit

Similar to Suicide Blitz 2, this Tank was featured in the finale, The Airfield, where the Survivors were at a military airfield trying to escape. The Tanks appear to be former soldiers still wearing their standard torn military uniform. However, it does not provide any additional protection for the Tank.



A burning Tank

Weapons effectiveness on tank2

Using FireEdit

  • Igniting the Tank with a molotov, a well placed gas can or a box of fireworks, or environmental fire is a very common way to fight against him, as the fire will deplete the Tank's health very quickly, which saves ammunition and kills the Tank faster.
  • The fire can be put out by water, depending on the depth of the water. In an area with very shallow water, such as the The Coaster, the water is not deep enough to properly extinguish the fire. However, on maps like Mill Escape, the water is deep enough to properly extinguish it.
  • If setting a Tank on fire, ignite him immediately when possible. Using it too late will result in the waste of a Molotov.
  • After igniting a Tank, run and gun the Tank to deplete his health further. Shoot a while then run backwards to make sure you will not accidentally bump into a blocker which will allow the Tank to catch up with you.
  • In Left 4 Dead, lighting a Tank on fire in Campaign Mode will boost his speed. Although this will kill him quicker, on harder difficulties he can easily wipe out the team. If lighting a Tank on fire in that case, consider looking around the environment for any obstacles that will make the Tank have a harder time reaching you. On Versus, his speed is slowed so don't hesitate to light him up if a player-controlled Tank appears.
  • In Versus, player-controlled Tanks will always have to avoid being ignited by Molotovs or gas cans. This can be used to help the Survivor team:
    • By setting/attempting to set fire on choke points, the player-controlled Tank will either hide out or take a detour to reach the Survivors.
    • To avoid going through fires, player-controlled Tanks may choose to throw rocks and punch cars as a means of attack, and the fire can make it hard to see that the Tank is doing such things. This means that like the Tank, Survivors must also back away from fire, as to get more time to dodge should a giant chunk of rock suddenly fly out from the inferno.
    • Two players should carry Molotovs to make the Tank cautious and try to avoid or target them first due to the threat of ignition.
    • Be wary that they may choose to just run through the fire, especially if the Survivors are nearing the safe room or the rescue vehicle.
  • Incendiary Ammo can help against a Tank as it will ignite him. This won't last as long but with proper burst firing from the team, it can have a similar effect to using a Molotov.


Preparing for a TankEdit

  • Listen carefully for the sounds created by the Tank. Make sure you can distinguish it from that of the Hunter's if one is nearby, as when prowling, Hunters create a growling sound alike the Tank's. His growling is significantly different from the Hunter's, where it seemingly sounds like a prolonged growling. The Tank's music does not start until the Tank is aware of your presence, so if you hear a sharp cue, a Hunter is around.
  • Occasionally, a Tank's arm can be seen sticking out from a doorframe or a corner which indicates that one is present. Fall back upon seeing this if you are not fully prepared for battle, because if you see much more of a Tanks body, it will attack. Also, be sure not to mistake it for a Charger's arm, which is thicker, darker in coloration and won't swing up and down like the arms of an idle Tank.
  • Rarely, the Tank may spawn in an area where the Survivors do not normally go to; if this happens the Director will respawn the Tank elsewhere along the main path.
  • In most non-finale situations it is often too late to prepare for a Tank fight. Run and gun the Tank, looking backwards once in a while so you do not run into a wall or obstacle which will allow the Tank to catch up and punch you.
  • Make sure the whole team is together, especially if speed running via car alarms or bile bombs as a Tank usually appears once per chapter. By starting the Tank fight too early it can cause him to easily incapacitate and/or kill the entire team because one player went too far and alerted it to the Survivor's presence.
  • Make sure all your guns are fully loaded with spare ammo before a Tank fight; you certainly don't want to run out of ammo while fighting the Tank or having to reload immediately upon encountering one.
  • In Left 4 Dead 2, it is possible to cover a Tank in bile without alerting him, and so he will not attack the Survivors as the Common Infected attempt to tear him apart. This can be extremely useful on Expert when your team is on a critical stage or low on health. Don't expect the Common Infected to help you though; they will stop attacking after a while and if they fail to kill it, they will attack you and may easily overwhelm your team.
  • If you or a teammate hears a Tank while a horde is coming, move to a spot where no one can alert the Tank and face the horde. This helps on harder difficulties as the two together can create massive problems; the Tank dishes out massive damage while the horde slows you down, allowing the Tank to catch up to you.
    • As with above, clear out any idle Common Infected and kill any Specials you hear; this way everyone can focus on the Tank.

Repelling a TankEdit

  • The Tank is slightly slower than Survivors that have 40 health or above (excluding times when they are water bogged such as in Swamp Fever) or under the effects of adrenaline. However, if they are not running in a straight line the Tank can catch up to them.
  • In order to keep the Tank at distance, the Survivor being chased must either take advantage of the time when the Tank is throwing a rock, or by taking an obstacle cluttered path to force the Tank to go around or climb the obstacle.
    • However, when using obstacles, it is important to use ones that cannot be used by a Tank against the Survivors, such as a car or a dumpster.
  • In some levels, there are small passageways such as vents. The Tank may get stuck in these passages on rare occasions, giving you time to kill him without his ability to retaliate. If Survivors are too close, however, he can still punch to throw them back or incapacitate them (or worse, kill them).
  • Do not be afraid to use melee weapons if you run out of ammo. It takes 20 hits to kill a Tank with a melee weapon. Of course, one must be cautious, since walking up to the Tank and attacking it at a close range is dangerous, especially on higher difficulties. It is best to try this when a Tank is focused on a single Survivor, as the Tank's AI usually causes it to attack one Survivor at a time until they are incapacitated. However, should it come to the point that you are left on your own and stuck with a melee weapon, you may want to consider the tactic of using a melee weapon on the Tank only while it climbs over a platform, or after dodging its attack. Should it come to the point that you are badly being beat up by the Tank in one corner without escape, draw your melee weapon and strike it, as it may be the best way to maximize damage to the Tank before being incapacitated or even saving yourself through the massive damage that your melee weapon can inflict. This is very good of getting rid of a Tank if you have bots on your game, since the bots will heal you after the battle if they can, and you will easily kill the Tank.
  • The Tank can knock down the beginning safe room door, provided the bar has been removed from it. However, if one were to crouch behind the door, it will cause the Tank to clip into the door and become stuck under the window, rendering it immobile. This is exceptionally helpful on harder difficulties.
  • The Tank climbs obstacles much more slowly than it can run. However, don't completely depend on this as he climbs much faster than a Common Infected, so be cautious if he is partway up the obstacle. You also can't block the Tank if he is climbing a ladder of any sort, as his large body will push you aside.
  • When the Tank is forced to move by crouching, it moves extremely slowly. Try to get the Tank to go in through a window, vent or any other small area, as it will give you a lot of time to hose it down with gunfire.
  • If you are incapacitated, do not neglect the possibilities of using your pistol(s) on the Tank. Any amount of damage you can deal to a Tank is that much less damage that must be dealt by your teammates, and if a Tank is low on health, your damage might be enough to finish it off.
  • If you are in an area where falling is possible, such as the Rooftop Finale, make absolutely sure that you are between something solid and the Tank, so that its attack will not launch you to your death.
    • However, if desperate, and the Tank's current target, run off the edge (don't jump) so's to dangle from it, and it should follow you off the edge (the Tank keeps at its target even if they are incapacitated in Left 4 Dead). Once the Tank falls, or is otherwise gone, have your teammates help you to your feet and keep on going. This tactic also works in Left 4 Dead 2, although the Tank tends to switch target when this happens, but if it means you won't get smacked off a cliff, it will be worth it.
    • Sometimes an AI Tank will simply not know that there is a massive pit between you and it, and will run straight into said pit. This is most exploitable in the elevator shaft right before the Rooftop Finale. Standing on the other side when a Tank spawns may cause it to drop down into the hole.
    • There are many places that can slow the Tank down, do damage to it and potentially even kill it before it reaches you (such as the pit of fire in the finale of Dead Air, or the exploding gas station in No Mercy, which are very useful if used right, if you don't want to use an explosive or don't have one.)
  • If a melee attack is used, the Tank will chase whoever hit it; this is extremely useful when a Survivor is incapacitated and is being pounded on, enabling a healthy Survivor to lead the Tank in circles while someone else gets the Survivor back up and into the fight. However, the incapacitated Survivor must not shoot the Tank after it has been hit or else it will turn right back around and resume its pounding on them. If so, since it is within melee range, Adrenaline Shots might be used to run faster to avoid the Tank's powerful punches.
  • When using a primary weapon, sometimes the faster, yet weaker, weapons are useful when dealing with them. Shotguns are only effective up close, which means that you risk being severely damaged, incapacitated or killed when this happens. Assault rifles are excellent when dealing with the Tank because of the fast firing rate, damage and ammo. Scoped rifles are also another choice, as their high accuracy can allow you to deal with a Tank from any distance.
  • Avoid "teasing" the Tank, as this will increase the chances of the Tank focusing on you and no one else on the team.
    • Also avoid standing too close to the Tank. Often times the Tank will target whoever is in the closest proximity to him. However, this could be used to draw away a Tank chasing after a wounded teammate.
  • Avoid bunching up together such as in a closet or corner and trying to unload onto the Tank while it assaults you. Doing so will make you and your teammates a very easy target for the Tank. If there is a prop around such as a log, car, dumpster, or forklift, the Tank can send it flying towards your direction to instantly incapacitate everyone. Doing so will also allow the Tank's punches to hit multiple Survivors at once. The best action may be to stay apart but within range of your teammates, in case any Special Infected tries to pick them off.
  • If there is a Minigun or Heavy Machine Gun nearby, you can use it to force the AI Tank to switch targets. The AI Tank always goes for the person mounted on the Minigun/HMG. This is exceptionally useful if your team is on one side of the area being chased by a Tank, and you are on the other side by the Machine/Minigun. These weapons are also excellent for inflicting heavy damage on an attacking Tank should one spawn at a distance within its arc of traverse (e.g. the Death Toll and No Mercy finales).
  • The auto and combat shotguns suffer from a -15% damage penalty against the Tank for balancing purposes, in the process reflecting real-world buckshot performance against animals with tough hides - something the tank most certainly has. Pump shotguns are unaffected however, due to the much lower damage per second of pump-action weapons.
  • If you and your teammates are equipped with auto shotguns, you may be able to kill the Tank before it can inflict damage to anyone. (Auto shotgun damage - 3000 per magazine totaling to 2550 damage due to 15% damage resistance; see Tank health statistics). In addition, a propane tank can deal a fair amount of damage to the Tank and stumble it, allowing you to quickly finish it off with shotguns as it is stumbling.
  • If a Tank spawns after the Crescendo Event at the crane in the second stage of Dead Air, try lighting the Tank on fire and making it fall between the buildings. This will cause the Tank to lose a significant amount of time for an attack, and often it will burn out before climbing back up. If no one else damages the Tank, then you would earn an easy "Man vs Tank" achievement.
  • If you are close to the safe room at the end of a level, run into it. The Tank cannot get in, and you can shoot at it through the door. Keep your distance from the door, though. It can still punch you if you are too close. Do not try this at the start of a level, because as stated before, start level saferoom doors are breakable for tanks.
  • Be wary when using bile bombs and molotovs on the Tank at the same time. Common Infected running through the flames to chase the Tank will light on fire, rendering the Common Infected useless unless there are Infected CEDA Workers present to attack in Dead Center; even then they aren't very common, meaning the summoned Horde is still mostly destroyed and you are a bile bomb short. Try to set the Tank on fire first before throwing bile bombs so he will run out of the fire when the Horde arrives.
    • Note that the fire on the Tank doesn't damage the Infected attacking him.
  • In Left 4 Dead 2, you may also want to consider whether or not you want to throw just a bile bomb at a Tank:
    • In Campaign Mode, it will not provide the blinding effect as the AI will steer the Tank into the right direction.
    • On all modes, it will send a horde. If this horde is not cleared, it can cause problems, especially on Advanced and Expert where the horde can dish out damage very quickly.
    • Bile bombs are rather rare in Dark Carnival (they occasionally appear in the first segment and always on the last) and The Parish (where they appear on the second and forth segments). The team may need it for a Crescendo Event and may not have enough due to its rarity in those chapters.
    • On the plus side, it outlines the Tank in any non-Realism Mode, allowing everyone to know where it is (apart from Survivor Bots, who usually don't acknowledge it until it is too late)
  • Be sure to deal with Special Infected as soon as possible while fighting a Tank; distractions caused by their attacks may lead to superfluous damage to the survivors.
  • Regardless of difficulty, AI Tanks will generally do a victory taunt (roaring, punching the air, beating its chest or slamming its fists on the ground when on fire) when it successfully incapacitates, kills, or hits a Survivor. Use the opportunity to unload your ammo on it while it is stationary, or if you are close to it and willing to deal massive damage, hit it with a melee attack and then run. Note that the higher the difficulty, the Tank's taunt will be shortened so he can focus on attacking nearby Survivors.
  • In Left 4 Dead, Tanks will usually pound on an incapacitated Survivor, making him a stationary target and easier to deal with as long as the Survivor is not killed. Tanks do not do this in Left 4 Dead 2, but it is still possible to force him to pound on an incapacitated Survivor, as long as you are willing to risk sacrificing a teammate. By standing close to the incapacitated Survivor, or helping them up, AI Tanks always go after those being helped up unless they are too far away. Swing your melee weapon quickly, and continue until it dies. However, the Tank does outwit this method on occasion and will instead land a punch on you, which can be deadly on higher difficulties. If you suspect that the Tank is about to attack you, quickly help the victim up so the Tank will direct his aggression towards them.
  • Avoid fighting a Tank and a horde at the same time, as this can be very difficult, and can often result in failure, incapacitation, and or death.
    • When a Tank is already alerted, a Horde will only spawn when the Survivors trigger an event (such as being vomited on by a Boomer or triggering a car alarm). Of course, Hordes and Tanks always spawn at the same time during finales when the Survivors are attempting to board the rescue vehicle.
      Left 4 Dead - Tank Theme00:53

      Left 4 Dead - Tank Theme

      the Tank theme

    • If you have to fight a Tank and a Horde simultaneously, it is advised to use any throwable items in your possession. Use Molotovs to block the Horde's incoming path (Don't throw it at the Tank unless it comes from the same direction, or you will still be surrounded fairly quickly), or throw a pipe bomb to eliminate most of the horde. Alternatively, in Left 4 Dead 2, you can throw a bile bomb on the Tank to turn the oncoming Horde against the Tank, or throw it in the opposite direction from which they are coming from to occupy them until the Tank is dead.
  • When one or more Survivors are covered in Boomer Bile, Tanks will usually choose them as his first target/s. It is still possible to force the Tank to focus on you, however.
    • Be wary that if an incapacitated Survivor is biled, the Tank will often focus on them and kill them on higher difficulties, so quickly get his attention so he can stop pounding them.
  • If you are being cornered but the area is large enough for you to run past the Tank, use an adrenaline shot to run faster. This will usually cause the Tank to miss his punch while you pass by. Running past the Tank with normal speed is possible, but your timing must be very precise or you will get punched.
  • In Survival Mode, The Plantation or The Port, the Survivors may be forced to fight two Tanks at the same time. Try to make the two Tanks chase you together; this prevents you from being cut off from two sides, and helps you to set them on fire with only one Molotov or Gas Can. In some narrow doorways or corridors, Tanks may even attack each other.
  • The Tank occasionally walks backwards, which is a glitch when it re-targets a player behind it. However, if he does this and he punches with his hand forward, he can still hit you. Sometimes he may turn around as he gets close enough to you before striking.
  • After an AI Tank throws a rock, the Tank will focus on a closer target, unless all the other targets are dead/incapacitated. 
  • During the Memorial Bridge finale, it is possible to sprint past the Tank on the bridge (and not fight him at all) by using an adrenaline shot at just the right moment.
    • However, this will cause the hordes to spawn again once they near the oil tanker leading to the tilted bridge segment.
  • AI Tanks will either spawn at a close or far distance. If it's at a close distance, throw a Molotov or (for safety) a pipe bomb (allows you to gain some fair distance from him) and kill him that way. If he spawns far away, he will start charging towards you, so either stand ground and fire until he gets too close, or move back to a spot that gives you an advantage over the Tank (not recommended for Advanced and Expert).
  • Just because a Survivor is down doesn't mean they will certainly die if you don't get them back up. If you keep Infected off of them, they will have 100 seconds to live, normally more than enough time to kill a Tank. They might also attract Common Infected, which can usually be dispatched with the Pistol quite easily. This keeps the Infected away from Survivors fighting the tank.
    • However, on Expert difficulty, the Tank will more likely pound the downed player first, so you may have to use a melee weapon, or mount the Minigun to draw his attention away from downed teammates.
  • Tanks can only be stumbled through a gas can/explosive barrel, an explosive-laden Grenade Launcher shot (normal shots do not stumble), or the explosion of a nearby Boomer. If any of these three are next to the Tank, shoot them to stumble him; the few seconds can be helpful to distance yourself or finish him off.


The number of Tanks depends on the server preferences, the game difficulty and the "mood" of the Director. It is fairly uncommon that there is more than one Tank per chapter except on Expert in Left 4 Dead, in which it is almost a certainty that the Director will spawn two on most levels (however, in Left 4 Dead 2 it is again uncommon for there to be more than one Tank per level on Expert). Most chapters usually have one Tank (excluding starting levels like The Hotel if not playing on Versus), although it is possible for no Tanks to appear. However, if no Tanks appear during that chapter, the chances of a Tank appearing in the next level are increased and usually start at the beginning of that chapter.

In all finales at least three Tanks are spawned, two while the rescue arrives and one when the rescue vehicle is waiting. The only exception are Dead Center, Swamp Fever and The Passing. In Dead Center, it is possible to skip the Tank fight if the team is fast enough to fuel the car and in Swamp Fever, there is a possibility of two Tanks spawning in the second wave (always on Advanced and Expert), or in the case of The Passing, after a set of waves that followed a single Tank spawn. Regardless of campaign, unlimited Tanks (usually one and rarely two at a time) will spawn when the Survivors are making their way to the rescue vehicle.

The Sacrifice also plays host to an increased number of Tanks. During the Port Finale, a Tank will spawn for each generator which must be activated to lower the bridge. During the sacrifice event four Tanks will spawn at the same time (albeit from a distance for balancing reasons).

The Tank is heralded by a brief ceasefire in finales, where the Horde will stop rushing (unless a Survivor has been covered in Boomer bile), allowing players to catch their breath. In other chapters there are generally fewer Common Infected around, almost making things eerily quiet - a calm before the storm. It is possible that this is because the other Infected have fled, as the Tank seems to eviscerate anything standing between it and its target without hesitation, although the Tank does not attack the Infected intentionally. Another possibility could involve the fact that the Common Infected have no real sense of self preservation, so fleeing from a Tank is not instinctive. Instead, the lack of Common Infected in this situation could simply be to balance the gameplay so that it is not too overwhelming. But, it can be noted about what Louis said in the Sacrifice comic."The common infected are like piranhas, not too picky about who they attack. If you jump in a lake full of piranhas, and you ain't gettin' attacked? Means there's a shark around."

Sometimes it is also a good idea to use a programming foible involving ladders to trap the Tank. If a Survivor is climbing up a ladder and stops and holds still, there is a good chance that the Tank will stop as well and thereby giving the other Survivors a chance to kill it without risk to themselves. Although this is a good idea, the person who is on the ladder cannot shoot the Tank and must not move due to the fact that moving also causes the Tank to come to life again. Also, the Tank will probably be pushing up, so you'll need to (on X-Box 360), move the moving stick down or you'll get pushed up by the Tank or any other Infected. Also, Special Infected might be able to pin you down, such as a Smoker constricting you on the ladder.

Similar to Witches, individual Tanks that appear just before the finale are extremely rare and only occur on specific campaigns; such as in Dark Carnival, a Tank can spawn while the team makes their way to the stadium while relatively short finale paths like Dead Center and Hard Rain a Tank fight before the finale is impossible.


Tank chasing Bill

Notes about the Rock Throw Edit

  • The Tank cannot move while throwing a rock, giving Survivors an opportunity to shoot it.
  • Keep moving and jumping when he is throwing rocks to avoid injuries. Jumping over rocks does not work.
  • You'll know when it is going to throw by the absence of the ground pounding noise. If you use captions, it will say "Tank picks up rubble."
  • Anyone can shoot the concrete out of the air, rendering it harmless. This method, however, is not always safe, as it takes more than a couple of bullets from an Assault Rifle to destroy the rock, and a shell from the shotgun at close range. The Hunting Rifle, if equipped, is perfect for sniping these rocks out of the air. It does require some practice, so you should not always try it. This tactic is best to use when you can't move immediately, such as when you are on a Minigun/Heavy Machine Gun, or are low on health.
  • An alternate choice if you have a Molotov is to throw it towards the Tank as it is throwing a slab. The Molotov should hit the slab and break it with the Molotov continuing on its original path (which, if landing in front of the Tank, is a plus). The other side to the rock throw is that once it is thrown, you only have a brief window of opportunity to shoot it or dodge it, depending on your distance from the Tank.
    • Similarly, if you happen to be holding Gnome Chompski and have no time to dodge, you can throw Chompski at the rock and it will break.
  • If the Tank is controlled by the AI, it cannot predict where a Survivor will run. Zigzagging will cause the Tank to throw the rock far from your current location. This does not apply on Expert difficulty, as the Tank possesses an increased aim and has an easier time predicting where you'll be when the rock reaches you. However, by moving in one direction when it is picking up the rock and then changing direction immediately after it has released it, it will most likely miss. This is because once it's been thrown it cannot change course. Note that this will not work if the Tank is very close.
  • You may be unable to dodge a rock if you are limping (i.e. when your health is below 40).
  • The Tank can throw rocks regardless of where it is standing, even if it's underneath a downed Survivor or if on a wooden support such as a bridge or walkway. The ground underneath it remains the same, despite having some of it ripped out. Strangely enough, if a Tank uses the Rock Throw while standing on a floor that is not stone, the rubble will still be stone.
  • According to the developer commentary in the first game, the Tank did not originally have his rock throw attack. Testers of the game claimed the Tank wasn't much of a threat if it didn't come too close to the player. Value took this feedback into account and then gave the Tank his rock throw attack as a projectile to attack far away survivors.
  • If facing a player-controlled Tank with a melee weapon, try and trick the Tank player into punching early. Then hit him once or twice with your melee weapon before backing up. He may be so eager to hit you, you may back up out of his range as he punches, causing him to miss and allow you to attack again. This is an effective strategy, especially when someone else is doing the same thing.
    • Be wary of the Tank's teammates while doing this, and remember that you cannot use a melee weapon when grabbed by a Smoker (unless it is a Chainsaw) to free yourself. So, make sure to have someone else using guns in case you are immobilized by a Special Infected.
  • Survivor Bots show little effort in evading Tank's rock throw. Keep moving so they will follow you.
    • Survivor Bots also show little effort to dodge when surprised by a Tank and will simply let themselves get hit; keep moving so that won't happen and to avoid getting separated.


"The Tank's job is to deal major damage to the Survivors in a short period of time, and to instantly change the pacing of the current game. If the Survivors are not prepared to fight the Tank as a team, they will be split up and inevitably killed individually."

Occasionally, players are able to take on the role of the Tank in Versus mode. The Tank has a frustration meter that depletes quickly as long as the Tank cannot see the Survivors. The frustration meter will stop draining when Survivors are in sight, but will not refill until the Tank hits the Survivors. This was employed to prevent players from camping away from the Survivors for long periods of time and using out-of-character strategies (i.e "sniping" the Survivors by throwing rocks and not actually fighting them).

Once the frustration meter is depleted, control of the Tank is given to another player if available. If the second player's frustration meter is depleted, the Tank becomes AI-controlled. Also, when players are controlling the Tank, they can break down walls highlighted by yellow cracks. Though multitudes of Common Infected can break down the walls, as can other Special Infected, only Tanks can break through the beginning safe room door.

There was an update for both the Xbox 360 and PC versions of the game where certain objects that can be punched/thrown (cars, dumpsters, etc.) are highlighted in red. The items highlighted in red usually instantly incapacitate a Survivor on impact (except in The Bridge finale where the cars only take out a large amount of health to balance gameplay due to their abundance on The Bridge.)


  • Avoid crouching through ventilation shafts and windows after Survivors. You will move incredibly slowly whilst taking damage and crouching (from weapons such as the Auto Shotgun especially), almost to a point where you will find it difficult to move at all. Although this problem has been addressed by Valve, it is never a good idea to move though an area where the Tank is forced to crouch or use the button to crouch while you are a Tank. Attack the Survivors through the window with rocks, or, if they are in a vent, let your teammates flush them out.
  • Use alternative routes where possible to "sneak up" on or flank the Survivors. Make sure the route isn't too large as to avoid your frustration meter from emptying. It isn't uncommon for a Tank player to get around the Survivors to attack them from behind, only to have his frustration meter empty on him as he is getting into position.
  • In a scenario where all of the Survivors bunch up and use auto shotguns, attempt to put as much distance as possible between you and them. Keep them in your line of sight (or behind good cover if you are good at rock throwing), and pick them off with a volley of concrete blocks.
  • Some maps contain walls or other barriers that can only be destroyed when a Tank punches through them. For example, the window on top of the CEDA van in The Park can be only destroyed by the Tank (and he can use this to enter the van and attack the Survivors inside), although the windows on the sides work normally (and are not large enough for anything but a Spitter's spit or Smoker's tongue to pass through).

Resistance and LifeEdit

  • Even though the Tank has the highest number of hit points of any other infected (6000 in Versus), a strong Survivor team can take it out without taking damage themselves.
  • Avoid being set on fire to the best of your ability.
    • Take notice of any Survivors who have Molotovs before you approach, and avoid these players until they are distracted or have used their Molotov.
    • If you hit a Survivor that has a Molotov, be sure to incapacitate them as fast as possible.
      • If only one Survivor has a Molotov, it may be prudent to focus on incapacitating them before their teammates to remove the threat of ignition.
    • If you see somebody who is about to throw a Molotov, change direction immediately. But if you are separated, use the Rock Throw to hit the Survivors instead.
    • Fire alone kills a Tank after 30 seconds.
    • If you are set on fire, charge the Survivors. You won't have much time to attack, so every second counts.
    • If there is water nearby (like in the Boathouse Finale), dip in to put the fire out. This also works in The Sewer of No Mercy.
    • In late levels of the Hard Rain campaign, you should not worry about Molotovs, due to the levels' flooded environments.
  • At one time or another, when you are next to become the Tank, you might spawn right in front of the Survivors, letting them pick at your health. It is possible that you have lost a significant portion of your health by the time you gain control.
    • If this does happen, just charge at the Survivors and attack. Since the Survivors are already in a position to inflict massive damage, you could die as you try to run away, so it would be better to deal some damage to them before dying.
    • Conversely, you may spawn far away from the Survivors, putting you in a situation where your meter could run out before you can even reach them. Attempt to close in as fast as possible in this scenario.
  • Beware of Survivors with bile bombs. When you are struck with one, your vision becomes impaired, and Common Infected will attack and slow you down until you either kill all of them or the bile effect expires.
  • Be wary of Survivors with melee weapons. If 2 or 3 of them have Katanas/Machetes/Chainsaws, these weapons can kill you within a matter of seconds. Target them with your punches or Rock Throw. Be warned that they can use the melee method and hit you, move back, and your attack misses and so on.


  • A Tank can punch every two seconds. Keep this in mind when running at a group of Survivors, as during the time it takes for you to punch again, the Survivors may have already killed you.
    • There is also a half second delay between when you click to punch, and when you actually punch, so take that into consideration.
  • Avoid attacking in the open at all if possible, because in the open it is much easier for Survivors to evade both your melee attacks and rock throws. However, Survivor Bots will barely move away from the Tank, so you can punch them easily.
    • However, if any Survivors are below 40 hp, you will easily be able to outrun them. In open areas, they will be unable to escape you, giving you the advantage rather than them.
      • Keep in mind that you may need to find cover after incapacitating your target, because their teammates will almost certainly have fled and taken up defensive positions to attack you from a range.
  • Using punchable objects effectively can save you health and time, and can effectively distract Survivors as they try to avoid the objects.
    • Most of the time, you can hit such an object from any side of your body. Use this to save time walking around objects, because you can just walk up against it and punch the way you need it to go.
    • Use caution when hitting cars and other large objects. If the car hits something in front of it, or if you walk forward while the car is airborne, the car may hit you and cause a small amount of damage.
    • Keep in mind that cars and similar objects, when punched, follow the rules of the game's physics. For example, a car that clips into a wall or some other object might spin away at a different angle; if it's airborne, it might even bounce back towards you.
    • If a car gets stuck behind a wall or in other barrier, or if you just can't move it towards the Survivors at all, don't waste time trying to punch it. Instead, go back to attacking them normally, or start punching a new car if there's another one handy.
    • Aiming up or down while punching a car alters the arc that the object moves. In Left 4 Dead, aiming up punches an object up, and vice versa; in Left 4 Dead 2, this is reversed, so aiming down will send and object up. When fighting you in streets and other areas filled with objects that you can punch at them, Survivors will often try to stay on higher ground, so punching cars up at them may be the best way for you to attack them (and will focus their attention on you, giving your teammates a better opportunity to help you out).
    • Work with the space you have available: punch larger objects like cars at Survivors if there is a lot of room for them to try to maneuver, and punch more compact objects like dumpsters if the Survivors are in an alley or some other space where the object could easily hit a wall before it hits the Survivors.
    • These objects can also be moved to make a temporary barrier to slow or stop the progress of the Survivors.
      • Keep in mind that these obstacles will disappear after a short time, making any delay you cause the Survivors far from permanent. However, it does still provide an opportunity for you and your teammates to attack, making such a strategy still beneficial.
  • Punch Survivors in different directions to separate them.
  • If the Survivors are in an enclosed area, keep attacking one Survivor (usually the one with the lowest health) until they are incapacitated.
  • Be careful using the swing attack on Survivors in wide open, flat areas, as this merely gives them a chance to get away. Charge a Survivor you've punched as soon as you punch them, and keep going in for another punch.
    • It's a good idea to hit a Survivor towards something that will stop them from flying far away from you, so you can hit them again and again while they are down and trying to get up to shoot you.
      • Be advised that this makes you a stationary target for other Survivors and even, if they're willing to sacrifice a teammate, throw a Molotov at you.
  • Always aim to divide and conquer if you're in a building or an area with many obstacles. Try to spread the Survivors out by hitting them behind large objects or knocking them out of windows. Separated Survivors allow for other Special Infected to attack and kill them.
    • If the Survivors can't see you, they can't shoot at you, meaning that you will take less damage during your rampage.
  • Unlike Campaign Mode, attacking an incapacitated Survivor will inflict only 24 damage per hit. Considering incapacitated Survivors have 300 health, it is much easier to simply incapacitate each Survivor one at a time.
    • Choosing not to do so usually makes you a stationary target for everyone to gun you to death. You should really only attack an incapacitated Survivor if they are close to death, your frustration meter is running out, or to force the other Survivors to come to you.
  • Go after any Survivors that are separated from the group, unless the others are extremely low on health. One gun on you is much better than three.
    • The March 11th update made it possible for the Tank to hit multiple Survivors at once. Previously, it was a viable defense when playing as the Survivors to group together in a small room or a corner. This was because the Tank could not hit more than one person at a time and would quickly be killed without doing much damage.
  • A few maps contain destructible objects that the Tank can punch, destroying them but sending debris flying in the direction that the Tank was punching. This debris inflicts damage on any Survivors that it hits roughly equivalent to the Tank's rock throw. These destructible objects include the pillars in The Subway and the boats and the pallets of bricks in The Docks.

Rock ThrowEdit

The Tank's ability to hurl chunks of concrete and punch cars towards Survivors was included when the game developers discovered that, because the Tank was so slow, it could be quite underpowered when faced at range. Survivors would use height and distance in large, open areas to easily take down what was supposed to be the strongest of the Infected.

  • Your Rock Throw is usually underestimated. With practice it can be devastating and deals a lot of damage to the group of Survivors at a short amount of time. As a rule of thumb, aim your reticule above, and perhaps ahead of the target while throwing. Remember that rocks fly in an arc.
    • Even in close range, the rock throw can be effective because you can follow it up with a quick melee attack. However, if many of the Survivors are focused on you, you may sustain a significant amount of damage during the relatively long process of throwing a rock.
    • If a Survivor is running away for distance, you can slow them down with a well-aimed hit, especially if you cause them to start limping, allowing you to outrun and finish them off.
    • If you have a competent team and are well suited with tossing rocks, you can simply hide behind low barriers or up high and throw rocks at the Survivors while your teammates cause havoc. This tactic is often advised if the Survivors are in an area where they can flank you easily or have powerful weapons such as auto shotguns or melee weapons, Boomer bile, or Molotovs.
    • Be aware that if you use the rock throw, you are unable to move for a considerable amount of time. More often than not, a crafty player will take advantage of this and throw a Molotov/Bile Jar at you. If the Survivors have melee weapons, one or two of them - especially if one is wielding a chainsaw - can come up behind you and drop your health rapidly if not outright kill you. Keep this in mind if you plan on using the rock throw ability frequently.
    • Although you cannot punch through walls, certain walls allow you to throw rocks through them if you're hugging them.
  • During scenarios when the Survivors are pinned down by a Horde or some other obstacle, you can simply stay far away and lob concrete at them from a safe distance. Not only does this make very difficult for Survivors to throw a Molotov at you, but if the entire team is using medium to close range weapons, you can almost rest assured that you will have plenty of health in case they start moving again. However, take note as fellow Special Infected can easily be killed with this ability.
  • If you plan on using the tank as simply an artillery piece as above to attack Survivors, find odd spots to stand on to prevent them from using Molotovs or Bile bombs on you, such as places up very high, or on top of a fence.
  • The direction that the rock is thrown is not determined when you start the attack; it's determined when the attack animation finishes and the rock starts flying. If your target starts to move as you start throwing, reorient your camera so that it's centered on where you want the rock to go. Since you can't move while throwing, Survivors will sometimes try to take advantage of that, and shoot or even melee you from behind in mid-throw. Turning around in the middle of the animation and throwing the rock at the Survivor behind you can save you from taking a lot of damage; even if you miss, you'll at least be looking in the direction of the Survivor who thought they were attacking you from behind.


  • It is possible to assist teammates who have already pinned someone, but not directly. The reason is that the Tank's attack will kill the Special Infected instantly, freeing the survivor they have pinned.
    • On the same note, if someone else on your team is playing as a Tank, work with them, but give them a wide area to fight, as they could easily kill you by mistake.
    • If a Survivor is pinned by a Hunter, try to protect your teammate as by running towards the other Survivors. You'll want to either punch them as they try to run past you to save their teammate, or have them back off so that they cannot save their teammate. It only takes a Hunter a few seconds to dish out serious damage.
    • If a nearby incapacitated Survivor is attempting to save their teammate from a Special Infected, you can use your body as a shield to give your teammate extra time to deal more damage. Although this can help, it works better when the incapacitated Survivor and trapped Survivor are the only two remaining, and it would probably be more productive for you to go after other healthy Survivors.
    • If a pair of your teammates have pinned a pair of Survivors, it may be a good idea to guard them from any Survivor attempting to play the "hero". This isn't often respected, but may be useful if a Survivor is attempting to press forward to save his/her teammates. When he/she turns the corner to find you there, this allows you to easily incapacitate them.
  • If you incapacitate a Survivor, immediately re-target another and prevent the Survivors from reviving their incapacitated companion.
  • After you incapacitate a Survivor, punching a large object over them will take away a large chunk of their health. This can help if you want to kill an incapacitated Survivor quickly.
  • If playing on a level where it's possible to punch Survivors off of the level, such as chapters 4 and 5 of No Mercy, do everything you can to knock them off; once they fall, there's no helping them. To do this, punch while aiming the reticule upwards and towards the ledge.
  • Separating the Survivor team with the Tank helps other Special Infected pin and kill the remaining Survivors, so they can't come to the group's aid, leaving you with one less Survivor to kill.
  • If your team has good communication in the above scenario, ask a teammate to pin a Survivor while you distance the others. They will not be able to use a pistol while they're down since they are being hurt, and their team needs to deal with you first.
  • If you get the indication that you are about to become a Tank, and are currently an un-spawned Special Infected, try to immediately spawn that Infected near the Survivors. This way your team will have an extra AI-controlled Special Infected to help during the attack.
    • Note that in some cases, if you spawn too far from Survivors, the Infected AI will be idle and not attack.
  • You can have a Spitter teammate run in and cause them to separate, allowing you to rush in while they are confused to deal heavy damage before they realize you're attacking them. By then, you may have incapacitated one or more of them.
  • During almost every campaign finale, the Tank is summoned at the disposal of the Special Infected team at least twice. It can be noted that in most of the finales in Versus, the completion of the second Tank confrontation is necessary in order to allow the rescue vehicles to arrive. As a result, the Infected team can gradually weaken and crush the Survivors by forcing/instructing the Infected player nominated as Tank to camp, making the finale's outcome one-sided and giving the Infected team the upper hand. Be careful, however, as a Tank that does not take the offensive runs the risk of losing control to another player or to the AI.
    • The second Tank kill requirement is more common in the Left 4 Dead 2 finales than the the original Left 4 Dead finales.

Tank Tips And Tricks GameplayEdit

As a Tank, most of the time you're going to have to rely on yourself to kill the Survivors. Though the other Special Infected might help, they are not going to be able to distract them for long. Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Try not to get in the range of mounted guns, as they eat away at a lot of health in a short amount of time. Either have a teammate eliminate the mounted gunner or find some way to get behind them and either force them off the gun to shoot at you, or punch them off. Doing such in the house during The Plantation is a great way to cause incapacitation or even death by punching them off the second story floor.
  • A Survivor often panics when they see a Tank. Be on the lookout for such a Survivor and chase them relentlessly, unless there is a Survivor you are more likely to kill, such as a wounded or bile-covered one.
  • A Charger/Boomer/Tank team makes for a good mix. Get the Charger to bring a Survivor as far from the group as possible, then while the Charger is pummeling his victim, have the Boomer throw up on them. The Tank can insure that the other Survivors do not interfere.
    • However, make sure to spread out beforehand, as the Boomer can explode and stumble the Charger and Tank, freeing the Charger's victim and allowing the remaining Survivors to attack the Tank.
    • Also, if the Charger misses and hits a wall by the Tank and Boomer, it will stumble them.
    • If you are more spread out before attacking, you cannot be stumbled by a mistake from your teammate(s).
  • You will sometimes see the outline of the AI Tank before you take control. If you can, get near the AI before you assume control so you will have a better idea of exactly where you are on the map and also so you don't lose control of the Tank while trying to get your bearings.
  • In the rare case of seeing a Survivor coming at you with a revved-up chainsaw, bat them away as soon as they are in range. A Survivor with a chainsaw will kill you very quickly if you aren't careful. By punching them away, not only does it create some distance, but they'll have to rev the chainsaw again, which can allow other Special Infected to protect you from them.
  • If a Hunter or Smoker has a Survivor pinned in a narrow hallway or the other Survivors are grouped up in one place while the pinned Survivor is being killed, stand between the group of Survivors and the pinned Survivor. It'll buy invaluable time for your buddy to kill the pinned Survivor if the bullets are hitting you instead of your teammate. Good locations to do this include The Park in the hedge "maze" or the alley leading under the highway to the trailer.
  • If at all possible, wait for the rest of the Infected team to spawn and then throw rocks at the Survivors at a place they have to go to. You may get lucky and hit some of them, which will reset your frustration meter and may also incapacitate Survivors.
  • While buying your team time to spawn, set up and ambush the Survivors. Only move from your spot if Survivors are throwing a Molotov, trying to get past you, or shooting fire or explosive bullets at you.

Here are some links for you to use to find more tips.

Left 4 Dead Tank Gameplay Tips and Tricks05:32

Left 4 Dead Tank Gameplay Tips and Tricks

Left 4 Dead - Tank on Fire Speed Comparison01:48

Left 4 Dead - Tank on Fire Speed Comparison


See Main Article: Achievements


Left 4 DeadEdit

L4d towering inferno TOWERING INFERNO (10G)
Light a Tank on fire with a Molotov

L4d achievement tank explosion stun TANK STUMBLE (20G)
Stun a Tank with an explosion in the Crash Course campaign.

L4d man vs tank MAN VS TANK (30G)
Single-handedly kill a Tank.

L4d tankbusters TANKBUSTERS (20G)
Kill a Tank without it dealing any damage to a Survivor.

Left 4 Dead 2Edit

Tank burger TANK BURGER (30G)
Kill a Tank with melee weapons.

Septic tank SEPTIC TANK (15G)
Use a bile bomb on a Tank.

Infected Edit

L4d all 4 dead ALL 4 DEAD (30G)
Kill all four Survivors in one life as a Tank.

L4d 20 car pile-up 20 CAR PILE-UP (20G)
As a Tank hit 20 Survivors with a car in the Crash Course campaign.

Sacrifizzle SACRIFIZZLE (50G)
As a Special Infected, incap someone who is trying to sacrifice themselves.


  • The Tank is voiced by Fred Tatasciore.
  • Music Cue: Tank
    • Left 4 Dead 2 Taaannnk!! - Hard Rain (Part 1)04:01

      Left 4 Dead 2 Taaannnk!! - Hard Rain (Part 1)

      Left 4 Dead 2's Taaannnk!! mutation where every special infected in a versus game spawn as Tanks!

      In the game's folder for the Tank's music (\sound\music\tank), there are two files: one named "Tank.wav" and one named "Taank.wav". Taank.wav sounds slightly different than Tank.wav, and is 27 seconds longer. It is played when the Tank appears during a finale.
  • The Tank had a letter written from his perspective in OXM 97. The letter is as follows:
Dear Humans. This is Tank. You probably know me from hit game Left 4 Dead. Well, Tank need to get something off chest. It make Tank sad that as soon as you see him, you start shooting at him. Tank not mindless killing machine. Sure, Tank enjoy smashing human skulls to paste. What 12-foot tall, 800 pound, horribly mutated creature wouldn't? But there is another side to Tank. Tank also enjoy stamp collecting, scrap booking, and updating blog under pen name "Love Muffin". Tank took origami class once at adult-learning annex, but fingers too big, so Tank smash teacher. Got B-minus.
So, when you see Tank on the streets of city, instead of shooting, try asking Tank how day is going. You may find that you and Tank have more in common than you think. Of course, Tank will still smash you, but you will die having made new friend. And that make Tank happy.
  • The handwriting appears similar to Team Fortress 2s Heavy as he writes in the same kind of way. Though, the Heavy writes in this way because his English is not very good.
  • The Tank, along with the Boomer, is one of the only Special Infected that take on physical changes in appearance upon death. In this case, the Tank's skin becomes dried out and scorched if it dies on fire, unlike the other Special Infected who maintain their original appearance upon death even when on fire.
  • In the censored version of Left 4 Dead 2, the Tank is the only Infected that has a fire effect when set alight (all other Infected can be set on fire, however the fire on them is not visible)
  • Floating Tank

    A dead Tank floating on the water

    When the Tank dies in water, it floats. Normally, thick muscles would have a low buoyancy. This also affects other Infected, including Specials, and not Survivors. If a Survivor dies in the water, their bodies sink all the way to the bottom. This is most likely developer oversight.
  • The Tank was voted number 51 in IGN's All-Time Greatest Video Game Villains[4].
  • The Tank is called "hulk" in the game files, most likely referencing The Incredible Hulk. Both the Tank and the Hulk are voiced by Fred Tatasciore.
  • Graffiti in The Sacrifice reads, "Lou F. turned into one of the big ones," referencing a Tank. This may be referring to Lou Ferrigno, the actor famous for portraying the Tank-like Incredible Hulk on TV.
  • In the trailer, it shows a Tank being hit with a Grenade Launcher by Ellis and is stumbled, though in-game it cannot be stumbled by anything except Propane/Oxygen Tanks or Pipe Bomb.
  • Oddly enough, on Campaign, if a Tank does not hit any of the Survivors, it dies. It is unknown how it is still living when there are no Survivors in sight, as in several examples shown throughout the series. For example, in the Left 4 Dead introduction, a Tank is alerted to the Survivors when a car alarm goes off. In Survival, Versus and Campaign finales, a Tank is alerted to the Survivors despite the fact that he has not seen them.
    • However, this may be due to having a similar attraction method similar to the Common Infected; in campaigns such as The Concert, he may be attracted due to the noisy sounds coming from the pyrotechnics and records the Survivors played to get the helicopter's attention, or such as in Town Escape, attracted by the activated Burger Tank sign. This does not explain all other finale cases since in those chapters the Survivors either communicated through a radio (which would be impossible for an Infected to hear from a far distance) or through other means.
  • Though extremely rare, it is possible for a Tank to notice Survivors between a fence, but if captions are on, it will say Tank Yells!, without attacking the Survivors. The only way to fix this is to attack him, which will start his attacking phase.
  • On Versus, when a Tank spawns, if you can see where it spawns, you will see a blue aura and a name called "Tank".
  • In  Left 4 Dead 2s Survival Mode, if a Survivor attacks the Tank and then attempts to get an incapacitated Survivor back up, the Tank will pound the incapacitated Survivor and send the other Survivor flying away. This does not happen in Campaign Mode, as doing this either results in the Tank either pounding the Survivor or punching you away.
  • Just like the Witch, there can only be two Tank corpses in the map. Over two corpses will result in the first ones being deleted off the map.
  • If another Survivor gets hit by the Tank's rock throw, the Survivor that was hit is supposedly knocked down. The other Survivors watching will just see an idle Survivor instead.
  • It is possible to get noclipped from a Tank's punch. A Tank must punch a nearby car, and when it hits a Survivor, there's a chance that the poor Survivor will get noclipped onto the car. The Survivor can still be helped back up, and when they get revived, they will move out of the car. Under certain circumstances, the Survivor may also take extra "Tank" damage from the car.
  • It is possible to noclip a Tank onto a window. It is quite rare to do so, and was only tested on Hard Rain's Milltown. A player would find a Tank outside the garage sale house, and even though the Tank would break the window, it would instead accidentally noclip onto the window and die of frustration.
  • The Tank, when idle and not attacked on Campaign mode, will continually do its "victory" pose if spawned without any Survivors attacking it.
    • Even if a Tank is hit from a Survivor's weapon and the Survivor is out of the Tank's line of sight, the Tank can still find the Survivor(s). This may be for gameplay reasons, to prevent players from safespotting Tanks on harder difficulties.
  • When the Tank dies on Campaign, it goes down slowly until it reaches the floor. However, on Versus, if the Tank dies it might flip.
  • When the Tank dies, you can hear a vocalization similar to "Nooooo" from the Tank. This shows that the Tank might still have some knowledge of English words from the other Infected.
  • When a Tank is killed, a Survivor will say something like "Killed it." However, it does not show the "[Survivor] killed Tank." The quote is said by the Survivor that delivered the killing blow to the Tank.
    • However, if you will stand near a dying Tank and someone else killed delivered the killing blow, that Survivor will get credit for a protection (game will show "[Survivor] protected [your name]"). This will happen even if you are very far from the Tank and get up close to it as it is falling over.
    • If a burning Tank dies, very rarely it will glitch and somehow appear as a Charger.[5]
  • The Tank along with the Witch is the only Special Infected that attacks if alerted by the player's presence, either by shooting or wandering into one.
  • The Tank is the only Special Infected that can knock a safe room door off its hinges, or break through it at all.
  • The Tank is the only Special Infected to have costumes. This includes both Suicide Blitz Tanks and The Sacrifice Tanks, which wear different pants.
  • During the finale cutscene when the Survivors board the rescue vehicle, the Tank returns to its "idle" position, even though the accompanying Commons chase after the player.
  • Rarely, In Dark Carnival, The Tank may spawn in front of the door that leads to the stadium during The Concert.


See image archive for more images...

See alsoEdit


  1. Infected:
  2. Tank's jaw
  3. Left 4 Dead 2 Tank model
  4. IGN's All-Yime Video Game Villans
  5. (Skip to 0:53 to see glich)
The Infected
Introduced in Left 4 Dead Introduced in Left 4 Dead 2
Boomer nav Hunter nav Smoker nav Tank nav Charger nav Jockey nav Spitter nav
The Boomer The Hunter The Smoker The Tank The Charger The Jockey The Spitter
Introduced in Left 4 Dead Introduced in Left 4 Dead 2 Cut Infected
Witch nav Common nav Uncommon Infected nav 70px-Screamer nav
The Witch Common Infected Uncommon Infected The Screamer

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