In Grifball, solid tanking is a must for any winning team. Although some teams have found success with a negative K/D spread, getting lots of kills is still the most sure-fire way of scoring the ball.
Our Grifball FAQ defines tanks as:
Tanks – A tanks job is really quite simple: plow through everything in their way and create a path for the runner. Most tanks prefer to use their hammer the majority of the time, however there are some tanks that rely on the sword. They would be referred to as Sword Tanks. Tanks are also responsible for keeping the opposing team’s defenders busy, causing them to lose track of the ball.
Here are some choice tanking tips from some of Grifball’s top players:
Have patience – It may take you longer to push up the court but i believe you will have a better chance of staying alive. This is always a good thing.
At the start of the game, make note of your “reload and range”. If you appear to have a longer range, then your ping is larger relative to the game, so your hits will register later. I don’t know any correlation between reload speed and connection, other than host will appear to have faster reload by virtue of having zero ping.
If you have large range or a noticeable delay between your swing and your contact, it is best to swing when the opponent is running toward you- the slight delay will give them a greater chance to end up within your range when the game processes the swing. On the other hand, you won’t get very many kills when you run at people, because they will usually be backing up, and the delay gives them more time to get out of your range.
This is inverted if you appear to have shorter range. In this case, you should approach your opponents more often, because of the lesser delay between your swing and the game’s processing of it. In this case, an opponent that is backing off is more likely to be caught in your range because the game processes your swing quickly, but you have to time your swings at charging opponents more exactly.
Remember that bonking is your friend. You can swing and then bonk faster than you can swing twice. So, if you find yourself in a situation where you’ve been outmaneuvered and are about to die having just swung, throw out a bonk- you might get a mutual instead of dying outright.
Lastly, do mind your reload. It’s kind of finicky and sometimes appears to cut in and out at random, but the swing speed in Halo 4 makes defending a little easier, especially if you are the last man alive on your team. If you want to deter an incoming push, start swinging more often while backing up. If someone charges you at the wrong time, you’ll kill them. If they keep their distance, your teammates can respawn. Be mindful of your teammates’ positions if you decide to deter with reload- the worst thing can happen is a super-clutch triple betrayal.
Everyone has there own style of play, and it’s up to you to figure out just how you wish to tank. Are you the patient type? The aggressive type? A mixture? Any one of these styles have there strengths and weaknesses, which is why you must take the time to practice and learn these weaknesses. Make those weaknesses strengths and disadvantages to your advantage.
Personally, I’m the passive-aggressive type. Patience isn’t a strong suit of mine, but I’ve come to learn to be more so. For the aggressive type, your pushes will depend on a direction you want to push. On the sides, up middle court wherever. You’ll want to mix your aggression (sprinting) with dancing. Slight stutter steps in between your sprints, and using the sprint to close the gap are how you want to go about it.
Tanking isn’t just about getting kills. Sometimes tanking can be as much as knowing how to stay alive as it is to get kills. If you’re having problems managing to kill an opponent you don’t need to run at them hoping to get them eventually. Sometimes it can be more valuable to just dance with your opponent and stop them from killing you. Hold your ground; don’t let them advance. You could take an opponent out of play or hold them up for teammate support and if the tank gets impatient they could try and force the dance off, allowing you to take the advantage.
Tanking isn’t just about being able to beat someone, it’s about being able to kill someone. Try and see if you can take your opponents from the sides of behind, if your team is dancing with an opponent you have a chance to assist and help with the kill. Grifball is a team sport and tanking can be too. Use your teammates distractions for easy kills and try to do the same yourself.
Try and find out how you’re connecting and tailor your style accordingly.
As a tank, your priority should be your runner. You must defend your runner, guard him, and make a lane for them to score.
If you don’t have the best runners, you must keep the lanes opened to make it easier for those runners to score.
Stay with your runners, stay ahead of them the whole time. If you lose a tank, make sure another tank fills the empty space until the lost tank spawns.
Play custom games with other Grifballers.
Practice, practice, practice. Get into as many customs as you can, as for advice and help from some of the top players, and more often than not they will help.
Next time, we’ll look into the top running tips. After all, all the killing sprees in the world won’t help if you can’t get the ball onto the plant.
If you have more Grifball tips, be sure to share them in this thread.