Tag Archive for zombie

Project Zomboid

Project Zomboid

They're coming to get you, Barbara.

Really like zombie survival games but tired of so many of them being shooters?

Project Zomboid might be right up your alley.  An isometric RPG set in the zombie apocalypse.  Build defenses, search for food, fight zombies.  Decidedly hardcore (they maintain that you WILL die eventually, there is no “winning” or happily ever after), this game of shambling undead is one I’ll be keeping an eye on, which shouldn’t be too hard considering they’ve got the game blog plus three developer blogs and a forum.

With any luck the game will support some form of multiplayer, which might end up making it the game I’ve always wanted to play.

This has the potential to be awesome.

I Love Sarah Jane

It amazes me sometimes that things can exist that I am not aware of.  Especially when they are things that if I had known of them I would have loved.  So now that I know about it, I’m a little annoyed that I’ve missed out on three years of loving it.  But what can you do?

Well, you can watch this…

A Week of Tweets on 2011-04-24

  • Insanity, day 5: feeling the burn… #
  • What wicked week waits before us, stalking us through the tall grass, the pounce inevitable, so let us not turn our backs. #
  • Insanity, day 6: I only had to take twice as many breaks as the guys in the video. #
  • Snicker-snack! #
  • "That doesn't work on all browsers. It's Microsoft specific code." "Can't you make them all obey Microsoft?" #
  • Luke Perry's Goodnight for Justice is unsurprising yet pleasant. DVD reviewed for @Shakefire http://bit.ly/fZvOmO #
  • Insanity, day 8: I forgot day 7 because it was a rest day. Today was easier than day 1. #
  • If you run or work for a charity, send email whenever you can. Spending money to send mailers to ask me for money makes no sense. #
  • Oh boy! This looks nifty! http://www.projectzomboid.com/blog/ #
  • Insanity, day 9: Pure Cardio makes my heart want to explode out of my chest. #
  • Yael Naim's She Was A Boy was a delight to listen to from the first track to the last. @Shakefire http://bit.ly/h5uB9u #
  • Insanity, day 10: Am I supposed to sweat this much? #
  • Insanity, day 11: Stretching it out… oh yeah… #
  • Anyone seen rising from the dead today should be considered a possible threat and not the foundation of a religion. #zombies #

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It Has To Happen Fast

As much as I love the zombie apocalypse genre, it has one glaring major flaw: in a world where horror movies, and specifically zombie movies, exist a zombie apocalypse isn’t likely to happen.  If you were to ask ten random people on the street how to kill a zombie, nine and a half of them will probably know how – aim for the head, destroy the brain, etc.  This, in fact, is one of the things I tend to hate most about various zombie stories.  The movie Scream was fantastic because it subverted the genre of horror films by allowing its character to know about horror films when the norm is for people to wander around in the dark by themselves even after discovering that other people have been killed while wandering around in the dark by themselves.

Unwillingness to Kill

The primary crutch that most zombie stories rely on is the reluctance of people to kill other people, especially friends and family members.  I’m fairly certain most of my friends and family are aware that if they become infected, I might keep them around as long as they are useful but once they turn I’m going to put a spike through their brain.  And while I know there are people out there who would be all protective of their recently dead loved ones, I think the education provided by the cautionary tales of zombie films would be enough to make that rare.

Of course, the real obstacle is a well prepared military.  If the world were to suddenly have pockets of zombies crop up, squads of the National Guard (assuming they aren’t in the Middle East) would be dispatched to deal with the situation.  At the very least they would round-up and contain the undead while researchers worked on possible solutions.  In fact, the real threat here is political, as people in Washington jockey for position concerning the rights of Undead Americans and slow down the response and effectiveness of those trained to deal with situations of a violent nature.

Spread of Infection

Depending on the source, another hill for a zombie apocalypse to shamble over is the nature of the infection.  Traditionally, after the initial turning of corpses or people into flesh-eating monsters, the zombification spreads through bite.  In most stories, the initial cause is a localized accident, either a chemical spill or natural event.  From there and moving to a pass-through-bite scenario, suddenly it seems kind of silly that an apocalypse is even possible.  An event of that sort should take a couple of hours to clean up, maybe a day.

Other stories are more ambitious and use either a specific global event (pass through the tail of a comet) or just go with a generic “the dead started getting up everywhere, all at once, and we don’t know why” nebulous unknown source.  This, at least, has potential.  If you get dozens, hundreds or even thousands of locations with zombies simultaneously, you begin to plausibly stress the available response resources.  You also gain the ability to have pockets of infection go unnoticed and get out of control.

How Would I Do It*

I’ve thought about it a lot.  Obviously, I mean, the title of my blog is “Aim for the Head” and the logo is a zombie.  And as the title of this post says, it has to happen fast.  In my version, the infection that causes the zombies happens in stages.  The first is a virus, the most contagious ever seen.  It’s airborne, it’s in the water, passed by contact and blood.  It is literally everywhere, and it kills 10% of those infected.  Literally a decimation of the world population.  However, those who don’t die appear to be immune to further infection.  That fact, combined with the contagion level of the virus, leads to the decision to stop trying to stop it and instead simply to allow everyone to get infected, killing one out of ten people but leaving the remaining nine immune.

Years later, when people are finally beginning to forget the horror of the Decimation Virus, people start dropping dead.  It’s just like before, people panic that the Decimation is back, everything goes nuts, and in the confusion, people don’t notice right away that the people who died aren’t staying dead.  Within hours, approximately one tenth of the world’s population is one of the walking dead, and that percentage is rising.

The point is, it has to be everywhere, all at once, with relatively high-speed in order to outstrip the ability to respond, so that bolting the front door and staying inside is the smartest decision that too many people will not make.  It has to happen fast.

* If you decide to steal this idea, let me know, perhaps we can collaborate, or maybe we can settle on you just giving me some credit.

Aaah! Zombies!!

In my quest to fill time on the odd occasion the wife has to work on the weekend, I browse Netflix in search of movies that I know she has no interest in watching.  This past weekend I stumbled on Aaah! Zombies!!  Take a look…

As you can see in the trailer, the movie takes a unique approach to the genre.  When the film is in color the main characters appear alive and everyone around them is infected by something that makes them act funny and move rapidly.  When the film goes black & white we see things as they really are with the characters being zombies that are moving slowly while everyone else moves at a normal pace.

Overall the movie isn’t great, but it was good enough.  I enjoyed the hour and a half I spent watching it.  It’s available on Netflix Instant, so if you have the time and the inclination, check it out.

What I Read

I don’t maintain a blogroll here, or even links of any kind to other sites unless they are within posts.  However, in a fit of narcissism I decided that I would post a list of links to all the sites that are contained within my Google Reader.  So without further ado, presented here in alphabetical order, and in one giant ugly paragraph, is what I read:

.: Cedarstreet :., < witty title >, A Next-Gen-MMORPG, A Softer World, A Tree Falling in the Forest, Anyway Games, Applied Game Design, Basic Instructions, bbPress Blog, Bio Break, Brass Goggles, Brea Grant, Broken Toys, Clients From Hell, Coding Horror, Corvus & the IGDA, Crabapple Cove, Critical Distance, crowdSPRING Blog, Daily Dragon Online, daspetey, David Wellington, DESIGNER NOTES, Digital Diary Detailing Datamancer’s Deeds, Digital Gaming@Dragon*Con, Dinosaur Comics, DOGHOUSE, Don’t Fear the Mutant, Dragon*Con MMO, Dragon*ConTV, DragonCon, DreamHost Status, Eating Bees, Elder Game, Epic Slant, Ethos Incarnate, Experience Curve, Felicia Day, Fidgit, Fullbright, Fun in Games, Fun in Real Life, Game Design Concepts, Game Design Reviews, GARY WHITTA, Geek Girl in Training, Grim News, Grumpy Gamer, Hark, A Vagrant!, Heartless_ Gamer, I HAS PC, ihobo, indexed, International Game Developers Association Board, into survival., James Van Der Memes, Karnatos, Kieron Gillen’s Workblog, Kill Ten Rats, Killed in a Smiling Accident., Kung Fu Monkey, LevelCapped, Lost Garden, Man Bytes Blog, Middle and Up, MMOData.net, Mobhunter.com, Moo Tang Clan, Mumble, My Name Is Michael, National Novel Writing Month – Breaking News, Nerdist, Nerfbat, Netflix – New choices to watch instantly, Netflix Community Blog, Not Always Right | Funny & Stupid Customer Quotes, not much’a nothin’, On Beyond Zebra, One Of A Crowd, Online Games Are a Niche Market, Only a Game, Over00, PARA ABNORMAL – the comic, paulietoons, paulneuhaus.com, Penny Arcade, Picture’s Up, Play Like a Girl, Popnarcotic, PostSecret, Psychochild’s Blog, PvPonline, Quarter to Three, Radioactive State, Rands In Repose, Raph’s Website, Real Life Comics, Running With My Eyes Closed, Scott Hartsman – Off the Record, screen play, Script Frenzy – The Beat, Sexy Videogameland, Shakefire.com blogs, ShrinkGeek, ShutterDreams, Smed’s Blog, Stylish Corpse, Surviving The World, Symptom of a Greater Cure, T=Machine, Tami Baribeau, Teaching Game Design, Terra Nova, Texas State Word, That’s a Terrible Idea, The Ancient Gaming Noob, The Banstick, The Brainy Gamer, The Celtx Blog, The Common Sense Gamer, The GameDev Project, The Grouchy Gamer, The HoneyComb Engine, The Internet Crashed, The Mod Squad. Blog., The Oakstout, The Oatmeal – Comics, Quizzes, & Stories, The Office of Letters and Light, The Official DreamHost Blog!, The Psychology of Video Games, The Word of Notch, This Side… Down, Tish Tosh Tesh, Tobold’s MMORPG Blog, Twitter Blog, Undead Labs – News, Van Hemlock, We Fly Spitfires – MMORPG Blog, Welcome to Spinksville!, West Karana, WIL WHEATON dot NET: in exile, Wolfshead Online, WordPress Development Blog, Words from Ward, WorldIV, xkcd.com, You Got Red On You, You Might As Well Be Unemployed, zen habits, Zen of Design, Zombie Reporting Center

Make of this what you will.

Dead Island

I first mentioned Dead Island back in October of 2007 because it was mentioned in Games For Windows magazine.  GFW has been gone for some time, and many people though Dead Island was too.  And then there came this…

While I’m pretty sure that the game play won’t be anything like that, the trailer is incredible.  Amazing even.  I eagerly await more news of this game.  And I know I’m late to the party posting this about a week after it appeared, but my posting schedule demands that zombies are on Wednesdays.

If the version above is confusing for you, here is one that plays everything out in chronological order:

Zombie Love Song

Do zombies celebrate Valentine’s Day? I don’t think so, but that doesn’t make this song any less catchy.

Zed-box 360

Last week, Undead Labs announced their partnership with Microsoft and plans to release their upcoming Zombie MMO title exclusive to the Xbox 360.  As an owner of a 360 who does not own a PS3, this news excites me greatly.

They followed that up with a Q&A of their own and a rundown of links to other sites covering the news.

It is safe to say that there is no other MMO, or even game, that I am looking forward to more than this.  I just hope it doesn’t disappoint.

I also hope that Capcom is watching, because a Dead Rising 3 with even more multiplayer capabilities would be kinda awesome.

Anyway, here is a gaggle of concept art lovingly swiped from the Undead Labs site.  Hopefully they won’t mind.