Opinion: Differing Discussions: Game of zombies divides a campus


Photo by Kelby Lorenz Moderator of last semester’s HVZ, Morgan Albertson, leads the humans in battle against the undead

Lontreal Farmer | Reporter
From Print [October 6, 2015] | Legacy

Photo by Kelby Lorenz An undead Brigita Martin stalks the battlefield
Photo by Kelby Lorenz
An undead Brigita Martin stalks the battlefield

“Humans vs. Zombies” is a campus-wide game of tag that takes place for five days every semester. Many view this game as nothing more than a nuisance and weird hobby of over-grown children. This couldn’t be further from the truth—well maybe not that overgrown child part, but that’s beside the point.

HVZ can be an outlet for many on campus who may not socialize well. It forces introverts and the socially awkward to coordinate and interact with other people in a fun, non-controlling environment. It is also a great way for new students to meet people and bond over something they enjoy. The university attempts to accomplish this with dorm wars, but it only goes on for one day and only lasts a couple of hours. HVZ accomplishes what dorm wars fails to do every year.

HVZ is structured in a way that makes team work the best way to win. It is also fun for those who love intense physical activities. Although it is possible to play the game without ever running, those who do prefer the physical aspect can use running as an important tool. Some people train specifically for HVZ. Some aim to increase their endurance while others hope to become faster. This game can provide a reason to exercise for some who might not otherwise be interested in it.

The best part about this game, however, is the community. From the moderators to the players everyone is friendly and understanding. When everyone is running around with foam swords and pool noodles in their hands no one is harshly judging anybody else.

The last great thing about this game I want to address is the fact that it breaks a certain stereotype. There are athletes who play as well as people who don’t know the difference between a touchdown and a strike. I have seen athletes get run down by the latter. I have seen what people would call stereotypical jocks seriously discuss Pokémon battles. HVZ players are a family. Even graduates or students who have transferred to a different school return to play with their friends. This game is the reason some people still attend this school. Whether you love or hate Humans vs. Zombies it is a very important part of life on this campus and won’t be going anywhere.
Tyler Tousley | Opinions Editor
From Print [October 6, 2015] | Legacy

“Humans vs Zombies” is the campus-wide game of tag that we all have to put up with for five days each semester. It consists of oddly dressed people who run around campus all week being as distracting and obnoxious as they possibly can.

Now don’t get me wrong, I do understand the appeal. You get to dress up in a costume and attack people with harmless objects. You get to meet new people whose interests are just as odd as your own. It seems like a nice community of people and I do have many friends who participate.I, however, would like to talk about it from the view of someone outside of the game.

I don’t participate nor do I plan to participate in the future.When I think of HVZ I really just think of large groups of people being obnoxiously loud during both day and night. I have to think about what I can and can’t wear for a week to avoid getting shot with a Nerf gun. Every semester when

Illustration by Rachel Schuldt
Illustration by Rachel Schuldt

the game is gearing up, at least one person involved tries to pressure me into playing, and I can never seem to find the time. Between working, school and work and learn, I generally can’t seem to free up an entire week to do it. When I express this I am usually met with a response of “Oh, well I took off work for the week to play.” That’s super great that some people feel they can do that, but seeing as I am barely getting by already—as many of us are, participants in the game or not—I cannot take off work to run around like a man-child for a week.

I see the sense of community the game creates and all the other positive things it can bring to the table. I am not trying to bring an end to the game. I am not trying to disregard those who play the game. I am just trying to show another view point that is all too often shut down before it can even be explained. HVZ is fun for those involved, but couldn’t be more obnoxious to many of those who aren’t.

Photo by Kelby Lorenz Moderator of last semester's HVZ,  Morgan Albertson, leads the humans in battle against the undead
Photo by Kelby Lorenz
Moderator of last semester’s HVZ, Morgan Albertson, leads the humans in battle against the undead