The Minigun is a mounted weapon in Left 4 Dead. It is designed for defending intense standoff areas. The Miniguns were presumably left behind by the military, but were abandoned when the Army left or was killed. It has a small wind-up time, but once it starts firing, it becomes one of the best support weapons in the game. The gun is very powerful but can lose its accuracy at longer ranges. It is bolted to the floor so it cannot be moved, only swiveled in a 170° arc in front of the gun. It has infinite ammo but can overheat; this is shown as the Minigun's barrel quickly glows red, as well as the emission of smoke. This smoke also impairs your vision, causing you to have a harder time shooting accurately. However, this is not an imminent signal of the Minigun jamming, as it takes 20 seconds of continuous firing before overheating. In Left 4 Dead 2, the Minigun is replaced by the Heavy Machine Gun (but its sounds are in the game's files, as it is and was meant to be re-used should the original campaigns be ported in the future). Additionally, the Minigun appears in the Left 4 Dead 2 ports of No Mercy (which was simultaneously released with The Sacrifice), Crash Course, Death Toll and Dead Air (Blood Harvest is the only original campaign that does not feature the Minigun). Prior to this, with the exception of No Mercy, the Heavy Machine Gun served as a temporary placeholder for the Minigun in the aforementioned campaigns due to them being in their beta stages.
Pointing toward the failed barricade in Riverside in The Town of the Death Toll campaign. (In Left 4 Dead 2, the Minigun is removed to force players to run to the safe room rather than trying to outlast non-stop hordes)
The upstairs porch of the boathouse in the Boathouse Finale of the Death Toll campaign.
You can greatly improve your accuracy by holding out a First aid kit, grenade, or pain pills and then aiming as the crosshair will be the same crosshair as the crosshair from the item you're holding. Line up the vertical line with an Infected and fire away. In L4D2 ports of these campaigns, a melee weapon also works.
Always have someone covering your back, because without being able to rotate the weapon 360°, you are vulnerable from behind while using it.
Aim for the Hordes or Special Infected. Don't bother shooting at the one or two Infected stragglers if, for example, there is a Hunter in clear sight. Your gun can take out enemies the fastest in close quarters. Use it to trim their numbers or take out the big guys. Let your non-Minigun-wielding friends take down the stragglers.
When shooting into masses of Infected, keep an eye on where your fellow Survivors are by looking for their colored outlines. There's nothing worse than getting gunned down by your own ally. (Unless easy mode - Where friendly fire doesn't damage anyone)
When fighting a Tank, aim for the concrete that he throws at either you or the other Survivors, as it can be destroyed before it lands.
The Tank, when controlled by the AI, will go for the Survivor who is manning the Minigun/Heavy Machine Gun. This can be used to the Survivors' advantage if other Survivors are in danger from the Tank at close range, and the Tank needs to be pulled away.
Even when no Infected are present, you should constantly tap the fire button (Because unlike Team Fortress, you can't spin the barrel without firing). This will keep the barrel spinning, and eliminate the long wind-up time when a Horde suddenly comes at you.
The Minigun also acts as bait for Tanks in co-op mode, allowing someone to distract the Tank with the Minigun, while the teammates pour lead into him.
Try not to overheat the gun. This is especially problematic if there are tons of Infected charging and the gun can't fire. The smoke produced can also obscure your vision and make it harder to see both incoming Infected and your own teammates.
The Minigun does not have vehicular properties, meaning that Special Infected can still use their abilities on someone using a Minigun.
While most people avoid using the Minigun, there's no replacement for it in finales. If a Tank is within range, hop on and open fire; this will most likely take a large portion out of its health if it doesn't kill it outright. Also, note that shooting the Tank continuously with the Minigun will reduce its speed.
The rate of fire displayed by the in-game model, 25 rounds per second, (real miniguns have rates of fire in the range of 50 rounds per second) would be considered tame in the realm of modern Gatling-type weapons. Many can be adjusted to fire up to 100 rounds per second, especially those mounted on aircraft. Even though the rate of fire in-game may seem excessive, it is not all that wearing on the weapon, as each barrel would fire roughly 7 rounds per second, less than some of the handheld weapons in-game.
The fact that these guns are in the various areas hint at how desperate the Military must have been; any regular machine gun would've been able to do the job with less maintenance, not need a power supply, and be easier to source. Likely, the Military set these up to deal with mutations among the Infected like the Tank.
Using the Minigun is one of the best ways to kill a Witch. If the Survivors are in an area that has a Minigun and encounter a Witch, it is possible to use the gun to kill her instantly. She will not be startled, and it counts as cr0wning her.
In reality, Miniguns are specifically designed not to overheat, as the multiple barrels disperse heat equally and allow for vastly extended periods of firing compared to single barreled firearms with even half the rates of fire. Valve most likely added in the overheating feature so the Minigun wouldn't be overpowered. Despite this, simply operating this weapon in short bursts will also allow for indefinite firing.
The Minigun can dismember Common Infected, but only the models in Left 4 Dead 2 as those have been improved to use much less memory than in the first game, with more textures including wound parts that are also available for melee weapons; this is also due to the enhanced wound system which the original Common Infected lack (such as the hospital patient re-used in the Left 4 Dead 2 port of No Mercy during the Rooftop Finale).
The Minigun appears in the Left 4 Dead 2 port of No Mercy, Crash Course, Death Toll and Dead Air. It works exactly as it did in in Left 4 Dead. Similarly, it does not appear in Blood Harvest like in Left 4 Dead.
The Minigun's entity is named prop_minigun_l4d1 in Left 4 Dead 2 instead of prop_minigun. This is because the Heavy Machine Gun uses this name on release of Left 4 Dead 2.
Turning your flashlight on or off while you're using the minigun will cause the flashlight to flicker repeatedly until you dismount (L4D1 only).
Like with the Heavy Machine Gun, one may be randomly knocked off of the Minigun in the middle of fire and have some problems getting back on, this is likely because you try to back off the Minigun and USE it at the same time, this may also happen when doing the other way around (using the Minigun then "getting off" it).
If there is an oxygen tank, gas can, or propane tank under where you would be standing on the Minigun, you will be above the normal height you would be at, and can aim farther down, but less upward. This counts only for non-picked up pickups (e.g. those on Crash Course 1 minigun near Howitzer).
Previously there was an exploit where players could repeatedly shove the Minigun from behind, jump on it and be launched forwards a great distance (this allowing them to bypass one Crescendo Event in particular or die from falling). This was patched later on.
When the player is getting charged by a Charger while using the Minigun, the player will still be in aiming animation, rather begin knocked to the ground, even when charged off the building. However, should the player dismount the Minigun after the player is getting charged and the Charger is killed, the animation of standing up will play.
↑ 1.01.11.2The default rate of fire is 1500 rpm as evidenced by the default value of z_minigun_rate_of_fire. Another convar, z_minigun_damage_rate, determines the damage rate of the gun in health per minute, with a default value of 48 000. Dividing the damage rate by the rate of fire gives the damage per bullet.