Friday, December 23, 2011

Friday Five!

I love humor.  And I also love rants.  So every Friday I'm going to bring you a list of the Top Five things I think about a given subject.  Why Five on Friday?  Because I also love alliteration.

We're going to kick this off with "The Top Five Types of People You'll Meet During the Zombie Apocolypse."  (I also love zombies...No not like that!)

So you’ve survived the apocalypse, good for you.  Enjoy the nice quiet, wait a second, why is that corpse getting up?  It seems to be lurching towards you moaning incoherently.  That’s right folks; welcome to ZombieTown U.S.A, population you.  And you’re lunch.  Tasty, tasty, squishy lunch for the dozens or hundreds (How big is your town by the way?)

So how are you going to survive?  The best way, possibly the only way is to find other survivors.  But this isn’t going to be easy.  For starters you’ll have to brave the ravenous hordes and look for them, and then you have to hope they’re interested in teaming up with you.

I hope you have some useful skills, because you’re going to need them just to last long enough to find another, still living, human being.  Here are the five types of apocalypse survivors you are likely to find, and how to survive them.

Really this list works with any apocalypse scenario, zombies are just more fun.

1:  The Soloist

No not like Han, although he might count for this too.  But like you this guy is on his own.  He may be lucky, but more likely he’s skilled.  Expect to find someone with an entire arsenal strapped to his back and don’t panic when he fires a warning shot at you.  He didn’t survive this long by being stupid and that’s exactly what you need.

Think of this guy, but with about a dozen more guns.

How to recruit:  The Soloist’s primary concern is himself, so make him an offer.  Do you have supplies he needs?  Having an extra pair of eyes doesn’t hurt either.  Show him you’re worth having along and can pull your own wait.  But the minute you start to slow him down don’t be surprised when he takes off.  And god forbid you get bit.

2:  The Crazed

Oh crap there’s another zombie charging at you, get your gun and…hang on a second.  This guy isn’t covered in blood and brains, and he isn’t decaying.  He’s actually able to speak too, granted he isn’t making much sense but at least he’s speaking real words.

This poor soul (yes more than you, stop whining) has completely lost his mind.  Something happened to him to drive him over the edge, perhaps he saw a loved one die horribly or maybe it was just the stress of trying to survive that did the trick.  Whatever the case he is a lost cause.

How to recruit:  It goes without saying but don’t.  In fact, try to get rid of him immediately as his ranting will only draw attention that you do not want.  It’s entirely possible his carelessness has already led to his being bitten, in which case he is now a time bomb waiting to die and then eat your face while you sleep.

3:  The Family

These people were (un)lucky enough to survive together and the entire family has been wandering trying to make due.  You’ll likely find them in or near areas that were broadcast to be ‘safe houses’ before the radios went down, as they weren’t able to make it inside before the doors closed but now don’t know where to go.  They could be any combination of parents, children, grandparents, other relatives, maybe junior brought along his girlfriend or little Suzy insists on carrying around Mr. Kitty.

And that’s kind of the problem, baggage.  While they will have supplies and resources those will likely be dwindling at this point.  Even worse, small children and pets will, sad to say, only serve as zombie bait and will need an adult to monitor them, thus taking a weapon away from the front lines.  And while it will be a miracle if the grandparents have made it this far, that luck will not be holding out much longer.  Children can at least run away but I don’t think Grandma’s trick hip will help her escape the masses.

"Why Grandma, what an easy to catch brain you have."

How to recruit:  Actually they’ll likely be trying to recruit you.  Even if Dad (or whoever is in charge) hesitates, one look at the fact that you’ve survived “Are those zombie hand trophies you’re wearing around your neck?” will have them begging to bring you into the fold.  At that point it’s up to you, will you join up and stay with them or only tag along until they’re no longer any use to you?  Congratulations, now you’re the Han Soloist.

4:  The Nomads

This is actually not a bad group to come across.  It will be comprised of a wide variety of people, think of multiple families and soloists that have formed a cohesive group.  They are wandering only because they have yet to find a place where they feel safe, but are often picking up stragglers as they go.

Of course this all depends on their experiences.  There will be plenty of survivors turned bandit and who knows how many members this group has lost to accidents, weather, zombies, other humans and then more zombies.  They will be jaded (they’d have to be to last this long), they will be tired and they will be cautious.  But don’t be deterred, this can actually work to your advantage.

How to recruit:  Like the family they will be recruiting you more than you recruiting them.  But unlike the family they don’t need you as much.  Depending on the size of the group chances are fair to good that they have people who can do what you do, and possibly even do it better.  But you may still have things to offer.  Are they heading the way you just came?  Great, you can act as a guide.  Do they need ammo, fuel or supplies?  Well it just so happens you found a store a few miles away, let’s go raid it!  Find a way to fit in and you should be fine.

5:  The Settlers

This is a group of nomads that has, miraculously, actually found a safe place and have stopped wandering.  Or more likely their convoy ran out of gas and they set up shop here because they had too, that would explain the mass zombie grave off to the side there.

Their location could be anywhere.  Did they move into a small town or gated community?  An old farm house?  They won’t likely be in a city since those of us whose brains haven’t been eaten are avoiding the cities, but nearly any other location is fair game.  The focus of this group is continued survival but also sustainable growth, as such, so long as you have a pulse they’ll more often than not be willing to let you in.

How to recruit:  The good news though is that now not only will your survival skills be useful, there’s a chance your pre-apocalypse skills will come into service as well.  What did you do before the world ended?  Could you cook?  Great, man the mess tent.  Were you a teacher or did you work with the public?  Fantastic, go keep the kids out of trouble.  Don’t want to do that?  No problem.  Grab a gun on guard duty and help grow crops the rest of the time.  Welcome to civilization version 2.0.  Let’s try not to end the world this time.

Images taken from Google image search

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