Tag Archive for zombie

Left 4 Dead 2

The big news out of E3 for zombie afficianados so far is Left 4 Dead 2.  Hopefully this doesn’t mean that Valve is abandoning the original and keep releasing content for it.  Anyway, the new game has four new people and the setting is New Orleans.  I can’t wait to fight the living dead while running through the graveyards of this town…

Here is the trailer.

Oh, and its releasing in November.


I’ve always been interested in low-budget film making.  When I wear my writer’s hat, many of the ideas I scrawl on paper are ones that could probably be done admirably for a couple dozen thousand dollars or more… but with the help of Facebook and other volunteer avenues, one man has made a zombie film, Colin, for the low low low budget of just $70.  Yes, that’s seventy dollars.

Apparently it is wowing people at Cannes, so I really want to see it at some point… in the meantime, take a look at these clips:

The movie looks rough, and “shakey camera”™ doesn’t have many fans, but I’ll be keeping my eye on it.

Zombie Apocalypse

Coming soon to the Xbox 360 (and PS3), Konami has made a zombie killin’ game called Zombie Apocalypse.  Here are a couple of game play videos.

Should be a fun little time waster…

Dead Rising 2

Dead Rising is still one of my favorite Xbox360 games.  So, clearly, I’m excited about the sequel.

Vegas, baby…

Earth Day and Zombies

The zombie apocalypse is not a plague… it is a recycling program.

Recycling the Living

Recycling the Living

Happy Earth Day everyone!

Scenes from the Apocalypse

My process for writing is often that I think of a setting, a situation, and then I think about how it is going to end, then I start writing scenes, chunks of text that might be interesting from wherever I decide to start along the way to the end I have envisioned.  Many of these scenes don’t make the final cut, either because they don’t end up working in the overall story, or because the characters I needed for them to work ended up being somewhere else, or not surviving long enough to be in the scene.  For years I’ve been crafting scenes for an apocalyptic zombie story, some are better than others, some are really bad.  What follows is one scene that was dropped from the story because the two characters involved got split up before this could happen.  A version of this still exists, but it is completely different now, with different characters and a modified setting, although much of the dialogue remained the same.

Anyway… enjoy…

“Do you believe in God?”

Robert rolled his eyes.  For the first six days Martin had barely spoken at all, but now at just over a month since the world went to Hell he was getting more prone to long winded often philosophical diatribes.  Robert did not have an answer to the question, nor did he need one.  He only needed to wait for Martin to take up the conversation all on his own.

With the spoon of franks and beans held just inches from his mouth, Robert sat motionless waiting for Martin to continue.  He looked over the boy wearing jeans and flannel shirt whose hands lightly gripped the rifle.  Martin never turned to look at Robert, he had kept his eyes focused out the window.  They both smelled like rotted flesh.

Tired of waiting, Robert started eating the room temperature food again straight out of the can, occasionally pausing to wipe his mouth with his hand and then wipe his hand on his pants.  Every time he wiped his face he was reminded that he really wanted to shave.  And a shower, but they could not afford to be clean for the time being.

“I’m pretty sure I used to,” Martin said at last.  “No, I’m certain of it.  Went to church every Sunday with Mom growing up.”  His eyes darted this way and that, tracking each and every movement outside.  “I believed in God, and God believed in us.  Maybe that’s what this is, maybe God stopped believing in us.”

Martin shifted slightly in his crouch.  Gently he lowered the rifle to the ground and picked up the crossbow.  He pulled the crossbow up to his chest, made sure the bolt was sitting proper and started sighting something out the window.

Robert craned his neck to peer over Martin’s shoulder.  There was a man in overalls shuffling down the street.  The overalls looked frayed at the edges, and their denim blue was lost in a dark stain that covered nearly the whole of it.  His left foot never left the ground, dragging the gravel when it was its turn to move.  Both men caught their breaths and the sound of the shuffling man’s feet swallowed the world.  One crunching step followed by the scraping drag of the other, then the crunching step again.

The crossbow made a quiet twang and the bolt sailed with a whisper until it drove home with a thunk through the temple and into the brain.  The man in overalls slumped the ground in a heap next to three other corpses in the street, each with a crossbow bolt protruding from the head.

Martin drew back the string and nocked another bolt in the crossbow.  He placed it back on the floor, picked up his rifle again and settled back into his resting crouch position.  His eyes never left the view outside the window.

Robert rolled backwards and leaned against the wall.  “Getting slow out there.  Might be time to burn them and move on?”

“Maybe.”  Martin turned his deep blue eyes on Robert.  They were his mother’s eyes, clear and pure.  “Maybe this is God believing that we can overcome anything.  A test of faith.”

And with that Robert knew they were here another night, Martin was not listening again.  But they were out of beans, which meant they needed to go foraging for canned goods before dark.

Pride and Prejudice … and Zombies

I have never had a desire to read any of Jane Austen’s work.  Luckily in school there were always other options.  I have suffered through a couple of her books’ film adaptations, however, and based on that it only strengthened my desire to continue avoiding them.

Seth Grahame-Smith, author of such works as How to Survive a Horror Movie, The Big Book of Porn, and other humorous endeavors, has taken the original text of Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and filled in the “gaps” of the book with a battle for the survival of humanity against the hordes of the walking dead in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

I really couldn’t think of any way I would ever consider reading Austen’s classic book, but now I just might.  It hits Amazon on April 8th, but some book stores have already started stocking it on their shelves.

[amazon-product image=”510XXFxXXGL._SL160_.jpg” type=”image”]1594743347[/amazon-product]


It seems that a new movie about zombies is being filmed in and around Atlanta called Zombieland.  Woody Harrelson, Mila Kunis, Emma Stone, Abigail Breslin (who adopted a puppy in Roswell)… if only I were still unemployed and could go hang around their sets in an effort to get in as an extra.

Well, at the very least its another film to look forward to, and I’ll get the added bonus of being able to say “Hey, I know where that is!”

Good News for Zombie Game Addicts

By way of the ZRC, I have learned that you no longer have to complete Call of Duty: World at War to unlock the Nazi zombie mode for online play.  You still need to unlock it for solo play, but at least now I have a reason to bump the game up on my want list since I don’t have to wait to wade through zombies as long as I want to bring some friends with me.

Fast versus Slow

One thing I have found in a few places in comments about the new game Left 4 Dead is disappointment that the zombies are fast zombies instead of slow zombies.  Sure, Dead Rising had slow zombies and it worked fairly well, but then again it was also an entirely single player game with a storyline that lasts for many many hours of game playing time.  Each of Left 4 Dead’s scenarios can be completed in about an hour (more or less depending on your difficulty setting and the people you have chose to play with).  I’m not sure I’d want to play Left 4 Dead in a story that lasted for twenty hours of play.  I mean, the story as it is is “four people wound up hiding together and have decided to make a run toward [insert possible rescue destination here]”, and it works for the time it takes to play it.  Dragging out a single run to rescue for twenty hours would likely be horrendously repetitive and tiring… just like Dead Rising is if you choose to just hang around for the helicopter, killing zeds and run none of the missions and stories (heck, even with the missions, sometimes Dead Rising is kinda dull… but I still love the game).

But could a Left 4 Dead style game work with slow zombies?

I think it could, however, it would require a number of mechanics changes.  For one, little piles of ammo, guns and grenades would be out.  As would the unlimited ammo pistols.  We wouldn’t have to remove guns, but we would absolutely need to slim down the supply of them.  We’d also need to add in melee weapons, real ones, not just pushing zombies back with your gun, but bats and shovels and other things.  Each melee item would have a power rating and a weight, swinging one would cause you to get tired.  The more you swing, the slower you swing, unless you rest up.  These things combined would allow for the encounters with slow zombies to be more tense.  If you have unlimited ammo, you can just shoot them all and walk your way to the end (if you have never seen the remake of Night of the Living Dead, one of the major changes from the original is Barbara actually putting to use the idea of “they are just so slow, you could walk right past them” and she leaves the house on her own with a pistol and walks to safety while everyone else dies inside the house), while the “tired bar” makes you sometimes choose to use your limited ammo over your melee weapon in order to survive.  The game would also need more “monster closets”, because as is Left 4 Dead avoids the monster closet by having hordes of zeds randomly show up climbing over fences and whatnot.  In order to maintain a level of creep and dread with slow zombies, you’d have to play up the idea that meeting them in large numbers is dangerous by occasionally forcing the players to deal with large numbers of them… open a door and wham, twenty five zombies are in that room you need to walk through.  Oh, and all zombies must be killed by removing the head or destroying the brain, shooting one in the leg just makes him limp when he walks, shooting both just makes him drag himself along the ground.  Did I not mention you’d need to watch out for zombies pulling themselves around at ankle level?  In fact, the game might be more focused on avoiding the zombies instead of Left 4 Dead’s plow through attitude.

While fighting slow zombies might still be made fun, I’m not sure that playing one could be.  You’d stumble around, you’d be slower than the players, and your only method of attack would be to get close enough to grab at them and bit them.  And if the players shot off your legs, you’d essentially be spending the entire rest of the map dragging after them with little hope of catching up.  However, without the obstacle of the special infected running around and keeping the game entirely co-op, you could have infection.  A player who gets bit is infected.  They will die, and they will become a zombie, how fast that happens depends on how badly they get hurt.  The game would have no health bar and include no healing, so that even the infected himself couldn’t warn his teammates.  So the other players in co-op would need to decide… shoot the infect guy now or wait until he turns?  Sure, killing him now makes you safer since you don’t have to worry about him turning, but killing him now also means that you are going to be short one gun or club as you move forward.  You start the game with four and it tunes for four, so if you have to off one of your own, you are down to three playing a map tuned for four.  Or two on map for four… or all by yourself.  To ease the sting of that, I’d probably keep Left 4 Dead’s survivor closets where you can recover a fallen friend, and from map to map within a scenario all players would get put back in.

Slow zombies in a first person shooter could definitely work, but it wouldn’t be the same game at all.