April 17. 6:32 p.m. I walked into the seemingly ordinary meeting room in Clark Student Center. We all simply sat there, the atmosphere not unlike the calm before a deadly storm. As far as I could tell, it was a seemingly ordinary crowd of students. It was a short-lived peace.
Some faces I’d seen before, some I hadn’t. I picked up my name card, bandana and pair of socks. The latter would become my lifeline – the only light in the darkness that would soon surround me. The puppet masters of the event, or the “University Programing Board” as they called themselves, explained the rules that would guide the methodic withering of civility across campus. It sounded like a game.
But this was war.
April 17. 7:34 p.m. The order was sent. Those faces I’d seen in the meeting would now be turning against one another. Friend against friend. Classmate against classmate. One by one, the Humans vs. Zombies event would wreak post-apocalyptic mayhem across campus.
Cole Alsup, mechanical engineering sophomore, was the second human to fall victim to the zombie horde.
“It’s more competitive than you think it might be. It’s not just for athletes. It’s for all the students who might wanna get out and play. Honestly, it’s just a bunch of fun,” he said. “Ultimately, I’d like to be the zombie who turns the most humans, but we’re all busy, and everyone gets that. We’ll see how it goes. It’s very important for colleges to have these things for students before big exams. I really think we should have more.”
However, Alsup still has his eyes set on claiming victory for the zombies.
“To the remaining humans in the game, beware of the original zombie,” Alsup said. “The guy is a beast.”
Taylor Dinkins, management and marketing sophomore, has stepped in as one of the moderators of this year’s game.
“I recorded videos of the game last year. I’m a little stressed about moderating it, but I’m more glad than anything else. I’ve been planning this since February,” she said. “For the second day, it’s actually pretty funny,” Dinkins said. “It’s going pretty well. As long as people continue to follow the rules and act appropriately, everything will go great.”
As an experienced competitor, Dinkins said she has her own thoughts on survival tips to both parties.
“To the humans in the game: stay stocked up on socks, and do the little side missions. They will help you later in the game. Now, as for the zombies, I’m just a little biased as I like the humans a little more, but I’d tell the zombies to utilize parking lots because they don’t count as streets, and find the good hiding spots.”
As for whether or not UPB plans to plague future generations with these war games, Dinkins said she’s hopeful that the tradition will live on.
“This is our third year doing it, and if it’s successful, we’ll probably do it again. Everyone really seems to enjoy it.”
The game is set to end Friday, April 21, at an undisclosed time.
— Midwestern State (@MidwesternState) April 17, 2017