In Defense Of HvZ

zombie-signWhen the weapons are Nerf guns, pool noodles and socks, I say … Game On!

So, the hot game on college campuses right now is Humans vs. Zombies (HvZ) … a ramped up game of tag with a story line straight out of “Night Of The Living Dead.”

Childish?  Maybe.

Silly?  A bit.

A creative way of blowing off steam without the need of a keg or a booze luge?  Absolutely.

So what’s the controversy here, ’cause it’s 2009 and there has to be a controversy.  Well, guns are involved.  NERF guns … bright yellow, purple and orange dart guns that are about as menacing as a hamster armed with a mini super soaker.  Yes, they can be tricked out with duct tape and given pet names (I’d call my “Outlaw Pete” … anything to divert attention from that horrible new Springsteen song) … but as long as they remain in their ACME cartoon look, I don’t have a problem with it.

The socks?  As long as they’re clean, that’s all I ask!

The pool noodles?  Please.

What HvZ is, at its core, is what college should be all about.  Groups of kids getting pulled together by a project of their own making.  Once the campus pooh bahs grant permission, the green bandannas come out (the color of choice at UMass Dartmouth – on the head your a zombie, on the arm your a human) and the communal insanity begins.

You see, inside buildings and classrooms, the game’s off … a wise rule.  It’s only outside in the quads and the open spaces where the chase is on.  It’s pretty simple, if a zombie touches you … you’re a zombie.  BUT if you hit the zombie first with a Nerf dart, sock or pool noodle, you stun the zombie long enough to make your escape.  This can lead to intense strategy sessions on both sides … and epic confrontations.

In short, fun ensues.

Those opposed to HvZ point to campus shooting tragedies like the unspeakable horror at Virginia Tech University.  I understand the concern.  But I also see HvZ as part of the antidote to the anti-social rage behind these crimes.  The gunmen in these cases were almost always loners with no real connections to their fellow students.  HvZ throws everyone together in a fast paced contest of group-think, and individual tenacity.  The more players … the more chances of bumping into someone you might of never met before.

What could be more human than that?


2 Responses

  1. Once again you get the people who need to protect you from yourself interferring with people just trying to have fun. These ‘guns’ are so obviously toys, and socks and pool noodles??? give me a break please…. Fun and enjoyment, if you don’t want to particiapte or watch, don’t but don’t prevent others from their enjoyment when it’s not impactingyou personally.

  2. Whoever came up for this should be proud. What a great way to blow off steam and relax. I wish this was thought of when I was in college. I think this should be something everyone should start playing is great. My only problem with this is would I want to be a zombie (Can I say “Brains” while chasing the humans?) or a Nerf gun carrying Human.

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