Humans vs. Zombies: Diary of an almost survivor


Imagine two mobs of people, one clad in orange headbands and toting Nerf guns, the other in green headbands savagely rushing toward the orange group. The object of the game is simple; humans in orange must fight back the zombie apocalypse, while zombies in green must feed to survive.

At first I didn’t know what to think of this seemingly childish endeavor, merely just shrugging it off. This year, however, I decided to give it a try and see what all the hype was about. Although I missed the registration deadline, I fought to get in and have my fun and was fortunately successful. The mission to keep humanity alive began.

Things started off simple at first, with the only task being to try and stay together and "stun" zombies with Nerf guns while staying alive.

Throughout the week though, there were various optional missions to take part in for a fictitious Senator Buford T. Jessup that included such things as a scavenger hunt to find "supplies," protecting key information holders and destroying a zombie factory with a rocket launcher. Humans were required to "get rations" twice during the week by signing sheets in the Campus Center and were also given some help in the form of "The Merchant," who provided weapons and ammo while donning a suspicious trench coat à la Resident Evil 4.

The thing players had to be most careful about was the dreadful walk to classes if going at it alone. While inside buildings were safe (because zombies can’t open doors of course), any time spent outside was fair ground. It was during my walk to Snygg that I got turned. After making it through the warzone of the academic quad, I carefully made my way up the hill to Snygg, Nerf gun in hand. Suddenly, three zombies appeared from nowhere and the battle was on. Luckily I took out two with my gun and one with an improvised "grenade," a ball of paper wrapped in tape, and thought I had won. Needless to say, I felt two hands on my back and a quick "HA! Got you!" and it was over. After making it four days, it finally happened. I was a zombie.

The rest of the game was slightly less stressful because now I just had to tag humans with nothing to lose. The worst that could happen was getting shot and being stunned for 15 minutes. The game went on and I worked with my new zombie teammates to stop the humans, who were in the lead. Reporting to Dr. Zombotnik, the final mission was to prevent humans from "getting to the choppa," or off campus. Help came in the form of special zombie powers such as a one-hand touch and a zombie that took two shots to die.

Overall, while I didn’t experience both sides equally, I still had a taste of both and I must say loved the experience that much more. I would highly recommend anyone who seems interested to give it a shot at least once before they graduate. I can’t wait till next time and hopefully I’ll make it to the end.

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