Humans vs. Zombies AAR

So, I played my first game of Humans vs. Zombies last night. For those of you unfamiliar with the game, it’s basically tag with Nerf guns. One person starts out as a zombie, and every person they tag becomes a zombie. Game’s over when all the humans are dead… er, I mean undead. If you’re interested, you can check out the full rules here.

We played a modified version of the game: indoors on the first and second floor of a building with all the lights turned off, and with zombies re-spawning after 30 seconds (there were only 13 of us).

It was INSANE!

Games lasted for about a half-hour each. I stayed for two of them, and only left because it was after 1:00 AM and I had class today. It was the coolest thing I’ve ever done, and one of the scariest too. Running around in the dark with only a handful of flashlights, not sure where the zombies are, hearing random shrieks, moans, and screams as the humans are “eaten” is pretty freaky. Actually encountering the zombies wasn’t as scary as hearing other people get “killed.” Except for this one guy. He was the Original Zombie in both games I played. The guy’s a freaking ninja. We’d see him run down one hallway, chase after him, turn down the hall, only he’s not there. We slowly back away towards better cover and HOLY CRAP HE’S BEHIND US!!!

Predictably, I died twice. However, both times I was one of the last people to get eaten, so I’m proud of that, especially considering it was my first time ever playing HvZ. Both times, I got killed late enough in the game that by the time I’d reanimated and caught up with the action, the game was pretty much over.

First time I bought it, the squad I was moving with had just taken out a horde. We had to step over the stunned zombies to get to the staircase. Well, I was the last guy through, and as I was stepping over one of the zombies he became un-stunned. He grabbed my leg and pulled me down to the floor where he and the rest of the newly-reanimated horde swarmed me. It wasn’t pretty. Meanwhile, the rest of my squad freaked out, popped off a lot of panicked shots a the horde, and bolted down the steps.

Second time, there were only four of us left alive. I’d started out the game with 42 darts (18 rounds in a drum mag, 2x 6-round clips, and 12 loose darts on a bandoleer), and by now was down to one fill clip on my belt and another with 2 darts in it in my gun. We’re in the lobby, getting ready to make our last stand. A zombie comes out of the hallway towards us. I pop off the two darts in my blaster, try for a third, and realize I’m out. Lucky for me, I tagged the zed. I called “Loading,” stripped the mag out of my gun, and pulled the last one off my bandoleer. As I’m doing that, four zombies come charging out of the hallway right at me. I start running backwards and scream “CONTACT!” I’m trying desperately to get the clip in my gun, which proved surprisingly difficult (it seems that fine motor skills don’t work when facing charging undead). I realize that no one’s shooting. I turn around, and I’m alone in the lobby. The other three guys left me to die.

Yeah, that kinda sucked.

I did manage to get my blaster reloaded and emptied it at the horde. Only tagged one of them. The rest got me.

Lessons learned:

  1. Always move with a team. You go off alone, or get left alone, you’re dead.
  2. Don’t use hand signals in the dark. My partner during the first game tried to. I didn’t see him signal me to move to cover him, and he got jumped and “eaten” as a result.
  3. Always clear any shadowy areas before moving into/past them. Zombies hiding in the shadows got quite a few of us humans.
  4. Going along with the above: I need a flashlight for my gun. In the pitch-black, often times we couldn’t see five feet in front of our faces.
  5. I need more darts and clips for my gun. I burned through all 42 of my darts in the second half-hour game (and I lost about 6 of them over the course of the night). We’ve got a three day long game coming up, and there’s no way I have enough ammo right now to last that long.
  6. I need a sidearm. My gun takes a few seconds to reload (I have to pump the action back before I can eject the empty clip, and the action locks closed if the gun’s cocked), and loading clips from the loose darts on my bandoleer takes a long time. That almost got me and some other people eaten a few times during the game. If I’d had a secondary blaster to switch to, that wouldn’t have happened. Similarly, when I ran out of ammo at the end of the second game, I could’ve at least tagged one or two more zombies before I got killed.
  7. Getting a stock for my primary blaster would be a good idea. In its stock configuration, it’s like a pistol-gripped shotgun (with no stock), so it’s really hard to aim (especially in the dark). A stock would at least partly alleviate this problem.

Yeah, looks like I’ll be hitting Target again pretty soon… because you better believe I’m gonna play this game again!!!!

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