The virus will soon spread across Troy’s campus, as well as dozens of other college campuses around the country.
It is not Ebola, but the first campaign of Humans Vs. Zombies for this semester.
All students are invited to participate in the dash to remain a human as Halloween nears.
“It’s a game of survival,” said head of the leadership team Andrew Goble, a senior music education major from Jay, Florida.
Beginning with an “original zombie,” all other participants wear bandannas around their arms, indicating their status as humans. Once a player is tagged, which is defined as any physical contact with the zombie, the bandanna is moved to his or her forehead to show their new status.
It is up to the zombies to tag the remaining humans.
“Literally anyone on campus can play,” Goble said. “Start playing of your own accord. All you need is a bandanna.”
The game is played on all of campus grounds, and the buildings are safe zones, so as not to interfere with classes. Likewise, the game cannot be played off campus.
“The beauty of the game is that you can play hardcore if you want to, but it can be played by someone who has no time,” Goble said.
Goble notes that the game has no membership costs or meetings to attend. There is no email list or other responsibilities. With no real time or money commitments, it can be played as a way to liven up the walk to class.
For those wishing to take the game more seriously, there are ways to become more involved.
Humans who want to remain human can carry sock grenades with them, which are just as simple as they sound: balled-up socks.
When a zombie approaches, it can be hit with the grenade and “stunned” for five minutes, unable to strike any victim during that time frame.
“We do discourage headshots,” cautioned Goble, stating that it does not count if the grenade strikes a zombie in the head.
“Missions” are also done occasionally at night on the quad.
“Late at night, we have missions and we allow Nerf guns and things like that,” Goble said.
In previous years, Nerf guns have been allowed during the entire week that the campaign lasted, but the group has decided to tone the action down for this semester.
“It got too involved,” Goble said.
“This last semester was the first time we didn’t have the police called on us for a misunderstanding,” he said, explaining that people frequently confuse screaming women and people being chased with more nefarious offenses.
When asked about any specific mishaps in the course of the game, a memory immediately surfaced and Goble laughed as he told the story.
The rules of the game clearly state that the buildings are safe zones, but there were no specifications on cars. An eager zombie leaped onto a car and tagged one of the remaining humans through the sunroof of her car.
“He jumped on top of a moving car,” Goble said. “We had a field day with the ruling on that one.”
Despite the run-ins with police and extreme stunts being performed, there have been no
injuries during the course of the game at Troy.
For those interested in joining this year, Goble states that all you need is a bandanna and preferably some socks that can be spared in the making of grenades.
The first campaign begins the morning of Monday, Oct. 20, and runs through the afternoon of Friday, Oct. 24, allowing a full school week of gameplay.
There is the possibility of another campaign taking place closer to finals.
Interested students can also like the “Troy University Humans vs. Zombies” Facebook page to see updates about the group.