A Zombie Apocalypse Could Actually Happen

by Joe on Oct. 30th, 2007

Zombies - not so impossible?: Image courtesy lebovox via Flickr.
Zombies - not so impossible?: Image courtesy lebovox via Flickr.
Okay, I'll grant that the scientific research conducted by Cracked magazine may not be the most top notch stuff, they do have links to some pretty cool articles that have actual science in them in this totally awesome article about how zombies could actually happen. I love zombies and zombie stories. And Halloween. This article is perfect joy for me. Though readers beware, they do use some off color language occasionally.

UPDATE MARCH 2011: Popular Science answers the question: Could Scientists Really Create a Zombie Apocalypse Virus?

Zombie Update
Ahoy, Buzzketeers, ahoy and aloha. JGordon here.

It’s a zombie heavy time of year. We’re well into the season of Halloweeny, zombie-themed events are happening left and right (apparently zombies are also into getting drunk?), and dozens of zombie apocalypse scenarios are shambling through your heads like so many reanimated corpses. And that’s all great, but I’m updating this post to tell you two things. Briefly:

1) You’re wrong. Y’all are dead.
2) This is a science blog, so lets do our best to rein it in a little. In a sciencey way, you know?

Ok, to my first point—come on, folks, really? A gun shop? Go to a gun shop? That’s the plan? Let’s think about this. What’s more dangerous, a staggering, slack-jawed zombie, or a desperate scared person, who will do anything to get/keep a firearm? Probably the crazy person with the gun. Clearly you aren’t the only person to think, “gun store,” so… you want to head to the place where there will be lots of freaked-out people and relatively few guns? Hmm. You’ll have to tell me about it later, because I think I’ll skip that.

Or a zombie-plow? It’s a delightful thought, but, I dunno… I’ve never actually had to drive plow through a crowd of un-feeling undead, but I wonder how long you could go before that plan fell through. Not to get too morbid, but that stuff is going to get stuck under your car, and some point you’re going to have to deal with it. Plows are for snow, not for hundreds of bony, 160-pound zombies.

Let’s separate ourselves from the future lunchmeat by being a little original. Which brings me to my second point: science, dudes, science!

We’re walking on thin ice already, what with this being a science blog, and zombies not being very sciencey. But perhaps we can use critical thought and scientific reasoning to effectively plan for the coming zombie apocalypse. Think outside the box here, because everyone inside the box is going to get eaten. (And I consider guns to be very much inside the box.)

We can still post zombie plans here, but only if they show a little more creativity and careful reasoning. Here are some things to think about:

Are you really going to pull off that headshot when the pressure is on? Have you ever considered how hard it might be to destroy the brain of a zombie with your old Louisville Slugger? Maybe you’re not the fighting type. (I’m not.) Or maybe you can fight zombies until the cows come home, but what about everyone else in your group? So how are you going to keep yourself alive? Invest some thought into zombie evasion. What techniques could you use to avoid inviting the attention of the hungry dead? Might there be a way to avoid their detection all together? Do zombies find you through sight? Or smell? Do they hear you? How would you disguise yourself, and how would you test out your methods without getting eaten?

Unfortunately, humanity doesn’t have a lot of real-world experience with zombie attack. But maybe we could find a useful analogy in nature. How do other organisms cope with the constant threat of being eaten? What survival techniques have kept them alive? How could we mimic them, or adapt them to the zombie threat?

And what about the endgame? Do you simply run from empty gun store to empty gun store until your luck or your food runs out? If you fortify an area, making it zombie proof (and how would you do that, exactly?), what could you do to ensure that you had food, water, and power for years to come? Or do you want to save the world? How are you going to figure out what’s causing the zombie infection? How are you going to cure it? If most of the world is infect… can it be cured? Or must it be quarantined?

There’s a lot of things to consider here, and “my dad has a gun” isn’t one of them.

So, people, lets use our brains before the zombies do. (As it were.) How are science and scientific knowledge going to get you through the zompocalypse?
Only science will save us from the zombie apocalypse! And only science will save your comment from being deleted. Let's see some zombie science!

**Update: Huge new zombie developments! Zombie problem solved forever?! See this comment for references!**

Your rating: None Average: 4.1 (112 votes)

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I think about The Zombie Apocalypse a lot.

Here's kind of a fun mental game you can play (it works at home, work, church, etc, where ever you can just zone out): consider your surroundings, and plot out your best course of action should Zombie Apocalypse suddenly occur (there will be no warning for the real zombie apocalypse). Are there lots of people around? Do they look like zombies-in-waiting, or fun survivor sidekick material? Which rooms or areas would offer the best protection (remember, zombies aren't fast, but there are a lot of them, and you can get trapped). Are there materials around for improvised anti-zombie weapons? The scenario can get as detailed as you want.

Now, when playing Zombie Apocalypse, you have to accept that you're sort of thinking like a crazy person. Just go with it though - it's all part of the game.

posted on Tue, 10/30/2007 - 7:26pm
Joe's picture
Joe says:

I play this game all the time. I'm so glad I'm not the only one!

posted on Wed, 10/31/2007 - 7:35am
Gene's picture
Gene says:

You mean something like this?

posted on Sat, 11/10/2007 - 7:44am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

2012... Now there is a thought. That in my opinion, is when the Zombie Apocalypse will begin. Are we prepared? Will we survive? I suspect that we are all in for a very difficult time. I am preparing myself for this unlikely, yet factual event which is about to hit us all in four years time.

posted on Thu, 06/19/2008 - 2:23pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I think you're wrong about 2012. End of the big Mayan calendar cycle, blah blah blah. I think a really good zombie apocalypse has to be our fault (28 Days Later), or a total mystery (Dawn of the Dead).

Prophesy doesn't do it for me. Unless someone who is all fired up about 2012 accidentally unleashes a zombie plague on the world through some New Agey ritual--that'd be pretty cool.

You're right about it being a trying time for us all, however.
Here's a link Liza sent my way this week--it's a brief, but pretty comprehensive zombie survival instructional video. I hope you all find it useful.

posted on Thu, 06/19/2008 - 2:50pm
albert's picture
albert says:

I play that game all the time, I'm a security Forces member in the USAF and I'm armed up all the time at work and I have 12 hours of post time to zone out and think of everything I would do should they start to attack. I worked an Iraqi Prison on my last deployment that made for some cool scenarios.

posted on Sun, 07/13/2008 - 3:06pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I don't think that you have a stable mind albert and when the zombies do come I bet you'll just shoot us. No offense I'm just really scared of your hobby XP
ps I hope you didn't kill any prisoners by suddenly freaking out in your scenarios, actually I hope you don't answer that at all.

posted on Mon, 12/13/2010 - 2:03pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

dude me and my friends talk about this everyday. we are so ready for the real thing. we discuss courses of action, protection, like steel gauntlets, traps, like flaming piano wire across doors, weapons, like molotov cokctails and katanas, safehouses, mobile destruction, like an armored transit bus and we consider every possiblitiy. when it happens i'll remember your name jgordon and hope to see you on the other side!

posted on Thu, 04/30/2009 - 8:10am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

zombies arnt real guys sorry to ruin your sick dream

posted on Wed, 01/13/2010 - 8:47am
b-rizzle's picture
b-rizzle says:

look at you, denying it.we know for damn sure who's gonna get eaten the first day of the apocalypse.i would love it if a zombie apocalypse happened.i would finally get to test out my surviving skills.2012, its gonna happen.

posted on Mon, 11/08/2010 - 5:56pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I bet there is going to be a zombie apocalypse someday. Don't make fun of our dreams. I hope there's going to be a zombie apocalypse someday. That would be pretty fun, but I'd definitely be really scared. I've never played that game, but, I do believe there is going to be a zombie apocalypse someday. Maybe not in our time, but maybe in the future. I hope that the zombie apocalypse will still be talked about in the future. If not, then, well, everyone's probably screwed.

posted on Sun, 01/16/2011 - 12:32pm
Snowshi's picture
Snowshi says:

Ah, I love playing that game! It comes in handy doesn't it? ;)

posted on Tue, 12/21/2010 - 1:46am
Gene's picture
Gene says:

Meanwhile, archaeologists in Egypt have pinpointed the site of the first recorded zombie attack, though the date remains a matter of debate.

posted on Fri, 11/09/2007 - 12:35pm
curious's picture
curious says:

is this serious?! seems like a far off stretch to me. i think a sacraficial story to explain the headless burials would be a little more believable. i would like to see those virus-testing on the brain tissues found...because i think i'm starting to feel zombiatic!

posted on Wed, 12/02/2009 - 9:18pm
Josh Allen's picture
Josh Allen says:

What to say... I have a feeling it's soon. Maybe not 2012, but sometime in our lifetime... Wonder if the internet will still be up? Probably not since the power will be lost over time. No one would be at the plant. Anyways, if I ever meet up with anyone, good hunting.

posted on Tue, 01/06/2009 - 7:59am
Kgette's picture
Kgette says:

I believe in a zombie apocalypse but however I feel it will not happen for a while I hope i will have enough time to get land and put up a wall and gate and have a garden also solar and wind power. I personaly don't believe in 2012 but I have looked up the topic, I more believe in JGordon's theory that we will cause it.

posted on Mon, 02/09/2009 - 11:26am
Jakey Mossy's picture
Jakey Mossy says:

U.K is pretty much going down tha pan because we have no weapons and because we all think we are hard we will trying attacking them with are fists and die ;) although i won't be around im joinin Royal Air Force and ill be 19 if this happens, great eh!!

posted on Sun, 02/22/2009 - 9:38am
rabzero01's picture
rabzero01 says:

Maybe zombies may not happen, but when rabies get mutated it could cause something similar to 28 days and 28 week later movies.

posted on Wed, 05/06/2009 - 4:42pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

Probably not. But it's fun to think about.

posted on Wed, 05/06/2009 - 4:59pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Actually, it just may be possible that a sort of "zombie apocalypse" could occur due to an outbreak of rabies.
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/05/090504-rabies-evolution....
This is an old link, but it's interesting. If rabies can do this, what else can it do? Nature's full of surprises.

posted on Thu, 07/15/2010 - 5:25am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

zombies are an awesome thought, but if the zombie apocalypse actualy happened, id be scared outta my mind. but i cant wait because i know its going to happen, i have survival strategies all planned out, and id love to be able to say "i survived the zombie infection!"

posted on Mon, 06/22/2009 - 2:46pm
Anonymous RC's picture
Anonymous RC says:

There is going to be a zombie outbreak and yeah it would be pritty scary and i wont just go out and take them on .... it wont matter to me anyway cos ill have loads of guns when i join the army in 2011 so ill be safe in the army base/HQ and yeah i cant wait but would it actualy happen who knows....

posted on Thu, 08/27/2009 - 8:00am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Huh. Well, you might have an edge on the rest of us, but the armed forces are no guarantee of safety. I mean, look at 28 Days Later. Or Day of the Dead.

When the Z.A. happens, it'll be our clever little brains that save us, not our guns alone. (I hope—I don't have any guns.)

posted on Thu, 08/27/2009 - 9:33am
Joe's picture
Joe says:

Our brains will save us or be zombie chow. Oh, and how zombies work link.

posted on Sun, 08/30/2009 - 9:51pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

you rely on the guns and ammo that you have not your brains cuz that willl get you killed rule#1 double tap shoot once and then double tap them in the head with your gun would best work with 270 win or 300 ultra mag or just a good 200 grain bullet

posted on Sun, 06/27/2010 - 9:20pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Ok thats a legite plan but consider this, an outbreak happens hundreds of terrified (and most likly infected people) run to the closest army base for protection, of course the millitary takes these people in to try and help and before you know it the whole base is crawling with undead. this is just one of many places to Avoid during the outbreak some others are hospitals police stations gunstores, and any store for that matter, these are the places people are going to run to first, the best thing to do during an outbreak is to stay inside and secure your windows/doors and wait until the intial panic is over before even attempting to venture outside

posted on Tue, 08/31/2010 - 8:12am
b-rizzle's picture
b-rizzle says:

yeah that's probably right but police stations, possibly, if people can get to the guns and ammunition, will already be raided.that's just a guess.and gun stores will be raided already.99% sure.wal-mart would be a good place.

posted on Mon, 11/08/2010 - 6:06pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I have been preparing for it for long, with the swine flu vaccin being rushed recently and all the talk going on about 2012, i think, i mean, i know, it will happen, there planning to release the vaccin in 2012, to force us to take it, i wont, im pretty sure its what it is, and as said previously, our guns are just a little part of the solution, i got my glock 19 by my side here, i hope it will save my butt, iv been planning everything, just felt like saying, dont think joining the army will save you, who are the first to fight them? the army, good luck, and have fun..

Until them, i gotta keep getting ready, good theory, if that all happens, i hope it wont be those 28 days/weeks later "zombies" but the slow ones from "dawn of the dead" and such movies. hope i see some of you guys on the right side of the mess.

posted on Fri, 09/11/2009 - 5:38am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

ehh i think the zombies would run, retaining some primal instincts since their brain is the only thing keeping them going. though zombie behavior can only be speculated, i think they would continue moving until their tissue and muscles began deteriorating. they could also starve eventually. there's a bright side to the zombie apocaypse, we just have to be NOT DOOPID

posted on Mon, 01/04/2010 - 1:00am
perkins's picture
perkins says:

I thought I was weird because i play this game all the time when i am bored! there is a possibility that a zombie raid could happen.

wouldnt that be some shit if there was really a T-Virus!!!!

posted on Fri, 09/18/2009 - 11:09am
perkins's picture
perkins says:

I live in an average size town and i always think about zombies when i drive around lol! i look at everything and find some good places for hiddinng and sniping and stuff like that!!! hahha

posted on Fri, 09/18/2009 - 11:11am
T.S.R's picture
T.S.R says:

Heh, I hope there is a Z.A. personally, not only am I prepared mentally...but I've got my stash of weapons ready lol. If it ever does happen, remember...Don't go out at night, don't go to the bathroom in the woods, don't go swimming...most importantly...Don't touch the dang body after you've "killed" it. It may not be dead, but if it is...guess what's sneaking up behind you... :)

Anyway, if it does happen... I hope to see ya'll on the good side of things!

posted on Mon, 09/28/2009 - 5:56pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Hero, it does seem you all want to be a hero so bad. FIght for the world. Dream as you will but fantesys will not help any of you. What are the probebiletys of a zombie knocking at your door asking for some sugar. I am not saying that I know what is going to happen but I can ashure you that "zombies" probebly wont come back to life and kill the world.

Keep dreaming and hoping, but none of you will be heroes.

posted on Thu, 12/10/2009 - 6:09pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Actually, I think traveling at night would be much more safe.
That way, EVERYONE is you're group is alert, and you only need a few people to be awake and alert while everyone else sleeps in the safety of daylight.

posted on Tue, 08/17/2010 - 7:03pm
BCill's picture
BCill says:

i like the way you think about sniping zombies

posted on Thu, 12/03/2009 - 12:16pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I've just now invented another game! It's called "Scorn people who go prepared into the zombie apocalypse."

It goes like this:

Pff. Nice chainsaw and guns. Way to board up your doors and windows. Yeah, I thought about doing that, but then I just gave my gun to some baby, and then boarded him up in a house, because only babies need that stuff. I'll be facing the zombies in a parking lot, and I hope I'm wearing shoes when it happens, because there's going to be a lot of punching and kicking. That's all a true apocalypsonaut needs.

Obviously you don't play this new game to win. You play for points.

posted on Mon, 09/28/2009 - 6:18pm
Jhole's picture
Jhole says:

I always think about this i also really wish the zombie apocalypse would happen i think i would have fun i know that sounds sick but i would

posted on Thu, 10/01/2009 - 9:10pm
BigD's picture
BigD says:

I kinda hope this would happen. My family owns a farm with alot of guns and food so ill be set hopefully we can meet one day!

posted on Sun, 10/04/2009 - 12:41am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

my biggest fear is every body turning against echother with gangs like in George A. Romaroes Diary of the Dead or all of the millitary going currupt and religous cults doing sacrifices. basicaly the world going to hell.
if not im going to have a ball, i will learn to hot wire a semi truck and treat it like a snow plow i mean i will go
zombie land on their butts. PS zombie land best movie ever!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted on Wed, 10/07/2009 - 10:37am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

All I'd do is go to the local airport steal a nice Gulfstrem and head for Midway Island and then I'd live there

posted on Wed, 10/14/2009 - 7:10pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I'm afraid that that's not what would happen. You might try to get to the airport, but, sadly, one of the many, many people at the airport who know something about flying planes would have long since taken the few planes there.

That's probably for the best, though, because, assuming the runways were clear enough and whatever land based systems that help pilots navigate weren't too messed up, once the plane touched down to refuel, it would be all over. And even if you made it to the island, you'd have to cross your fingers that there weren't any zombies already there, or that any would ever arrive, because... imagine being stuck on a small island with a rapidly multiplying population of predators and limited prey (you).

No, please do imagine it, because that's the only sciencey thing I can make out of this. And these comments now require science content.

Let's see some science! You're barely trying, and it means you're going to get eaten.

posted on Thu, 10/15/2009 - 11:45am
Tater's picture
Tater says:

I Live in an all steel building with no windows! I've had my thoughts I'm going to cut a hole in the top of the building (it's 27 foot tall) and just pick em' off. I already working on the plans for an armored vehicle to go out and get food. Should start buying canned food and storing it away, enough to last me and some people a couple years. I'll just try my best not to get eaten. If the internet is still up when it starts ill give you my address and we'll take these things out as a group!

posted on Tue, 10/27/2009 - 10:19pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Aaaah!!!

No!!!

Please, people, science science science! Your responses must contain something sciencey! Or I will be forced to point out all the places you've gone wrong, and why you will die horrible, violent deaths because of your thoughtlessness. Arrrggh!

Tater is dead.

Tater, do you live in a silo or something? I'm assuming you've got plumbing and running water, and that's going to be pretty important when the zompocalypse comes, 'cause you're going to get thirsty, and things are going to get stinky if you don't have water.

Your comment about the internet brought something to mind—electricity. I'm going to say no, the internet won't last long after zombies. I don't know how much maintenance all the servers the the internet exists on require, or how long it'll be before accidents destroy the data-carrying infrastructure the internet requires, but let's assume the best for those, and that that will all be okay for a while (even though it won't). What the internet definitely does need is electricity. How long will that last? Not super long, Tater, not super long.

The book The World Without Us covers some of this (that is, how long stuff will last without people to take care of it) but I'm afraid I don't have a copy handy. Fortunately, the Straight Dope also covered this question (specifically relating to zombies, even!)

They point out that coal plants (which supply more than half of the country's electricity) will go down in about a day, without a constant supply of fuel. And even if the coal were somehow able to still be mined, processed and transported to the power plants, there are a whole bunch of things that can go wrong. Hopefully the power plant is zombie proof, and none of those people want to go home and protect their families!

Nuclear plants, supplying about 20% of our power, don't need fuel so often (they can last maybe a year and a half between refueling). And while they're more stable than coal plants, they still need constant maintenance and monitoring. So they might last a few days to a week.

Hydro plants could last a few weeks unattended if they're lucky. But we only get about 7% of our power from them. Hopefully you, the people you want to email, and the facilities the internet requires are all on that 7%, huh?

Natural gas might last 1-3 days.

And think about how power can go out even without the help of hordes of the undead.

Straight Dope suggests that in the event of a more gradual zombie outbreak, survivors might be able to keep some plants going for a few months. But even then it would probably only result in small, isolated "islands" of power.

So no internet for you.

And back to the water situation—that's gone too. All that canned food will do you no good without something to drink. If you get your water from a well beneath your property, better rig up a hand crank. And if you get city water, you're going to want to fill up the tub before the pumps that fill up water towers to provide pressure go, because everyone else is going to want that water too. And I'm not just talking about drinking water. We've gotten pretty used to flushing stuff away. So are you going to fill up your house? (Good thing about those high ceilings!) Or dump it over the roof? Neither is very hygienic, and wouldn't dying of diarrhea during a zombie apocalypse just be a kick in the teeth? Or will you dig a latrine on the edge of your property? Better make the outhouse out of steel too.

And your armored car? It'll need fuel. If the zombie outbreak is fast enough that people don't get a chance to empty gas stations before they're empty, and if accidents don't make the remaining gas totally unaccessible, you're going to have to figure out a way to get the gas quickly (without the help of electric pumps, remember), before the zombies sniff you out.

Think this out as a group now, not later. And really think it out. Use your noggins. Use your science.

posted on Tue, 10/27/2009 - 11:47pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Going more off the "sciency" note, human intervention would not be the only solution for the proposed zombie outbreak. They are, or were once, human. They have human organs, tissue, muscle, bone, blood, etc. Any ailment concerning them could very well effect a zombie.
Secondly, anyone who paid half attention in chemistry knows that dead matter WILL decay. If we did think through our strategies wisely, and were somehow able to hold out long enough, they would eventually decay. And assuming they would hunger for human flesh would lead to starvation again assuming we properly worked through it.

posted on Mon, 01/04/2010 - 1:14am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

But, contradicting what you said, there is always a chance that the Zeds (Short for Zombies, I'm from the Zombie Survival & Defense Wiki), will be totally alive. They could be plain ol' angry humans; who have to eat, sleep, and breath.
And although a 'sleeping Zed' wont be as much fun as a 'real Zed', it is a lot more realistic scenario. There is no living organism on this Earth that does not need some kind of rest, and nor is there any kind of organism that does not need some kind of food.

Not to burst your bubble or anything though. I'm also a 'Zombologist'

For anyone posting anything new, please use proper grammar and punctuation. And paragraphing.

If anyone else from ZSDW is here, my user name is

~ ZombieSurvival101

Cheers!

posted on Wed, 04/14/2010 - 6:12pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

"And paragraphing" is not a complete sentence, so I'm afraid the grammar requirement has already gone out the window. It's Thunderdome now, folks. You know the rules; there are none.

posted on Thu, 04/15/2010 - 12:37pm
devon's picture
devon says:

listen, i have it all planed out. my grandparents live in the rocky mountains. say the zombies started happening, my dad would bring me and my friend Scott up to my grandparents house. in there garage they have many tools and melle weapons. there is a ladder leading up to a very stable attic. we would go in the attick and take out all of the supplies for model trains (my grandpa loves making model trains) and bring in food. there is a plug in and i realise that power wont last long but for when it does i would use the old microwave in the attic. i would bring in more supplies like all of my grandpas guns. we would still take the guns with no ammo because we could always ram zombies and make a barricade. my weapons strategy is use melle weapons first and guns later. i sugjest you dont use guns. i believe because of the swine flue cure zombies will start in 2012.

posted on Thu, 12/30/2010 - 8:06pm
Diego's picture
Diego says:

Ok Mr. Gordon, calm down a little. First of all solar Pierre would not be an issue. You don't need natural gas. Water heaters are now electric along with space heaters and certain POS electric vehicles. And im no scientist however im sure there would be some primitive yet efficient way to gather water from some natural means. Condensators that absorb humidity from the air for example. To go along with that a water purification system powered by electricity (solar). Im sure some of us will figure something out just like people did before there was even electricity. Heck if you take a coffee can (metal) and place a sheet of plastic over it water will condence and gather in the bottom of that can. Why not scale it up a notch. Lemme know what you think. Wether you think im full of @#$& or if you think I might possibly have somethin. I still love my guns and will never get rid of them, but if surviving this means not having to use them........by all means.

posted on Wed, 01/26/2011 - 10:28am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I will not calm down! Not until all of you realize that zombies aren't real, and if they were real, you would all be dead. (Don't take it personally—I'd be dead too. That's just how pandemics work.)

I'm going to go ahead and say that solar Pierre would be an issue. Assuming there are any intact, functioning solar Pierre panels after the collapse of civilization as we know it, would you know how to assemble them and get them working? Will the place you find yourself have enough insolation to supply adequate Pierre to your water heater, electric vehicle, condensators (not a word), and purifiers, given the size of solar array you're able to salvage, maintain, and defend?

posted on Wed, 01/26/2011 - 10:53am
adam41609's picture
adam41609 says:

my plan is to go to a local gunshop. i made a list of the guns im getting if this scenario ever happens in my life time.: a single action revolver,a 357,ak 47,m9,hunting rifle,and a mac11.

posted on Sun, 11/01/2009 - 4:04pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Hmm. I think we've covered the gunshop plan already. I'm afraid that thousands of people got to the shop before you, and if you're lucky, they've already left.

But let's say you made it to a gunshop early, and nobody is violently trying to obtain or protect the guns, and you somehow filled your list. Let's see what you've got.

A loaded AK weighs about 10 pounds.

Depending on the model, your revolver will weigh about 3 pounds.

The magnum will add another 3 pounds, give or take.

The m9 is 2.6 pounds.

"Hunting rifle" is sort of a generic term. But let's say that your average zombie can be considered "medium to large game," so you'll probably want something like like a 30-06, and that'll be about 10 more pounds.

Your mac-11 machine pistol will be 3.5 pounds.

So what's all that add up to? You've got 32.1 pounds of guns, with no accessories or ammo. And you're going to want ammo, I suppose, unless you just wanted some fancy clubs. You could probably carry 32 pounds without much trouble, but hopefully you've got a team to carry your ammo, water and food. You also might want to consider those long guns—with a rifle and an AK-47 on your back, crawling through tight spaces might be an issue, and they make a couple more nice handholds for grabby zombie hands. Animals that spend most of their time running and hiding from predators don't have a lot of extra weight, usually, and their bodies are often sleek and bendy. Think about a rat, adam41609. After the zombie apocalypse you'll probably be living like a rat (if you're living at all) so make ratty plans.

Or maybe you want to live boldly, and take the planet back from the zombie scourge? Is the best way to do that—i.e. the systematic elimination of millions of undead monsters—striking out on your own with a wheelbarrow full of weapons?

No, I'm sorry, but you'll need to think this out more. But please write back when you have some sciencey plans!

posted on Sun, 11/01/2009 - 7:19pm
Dan-Uk's picture
Dan-Uk says:

okay the uk'll will be pretty much toast! But! we British are good thinkers! my house is well cited and easy to block up! without guns i'd say car batteries would have to do. a few well placed sulphuric acid mines wouldnt go amiss. as for water. i live by the sea, all i need is a crude distilling kit, easy. plenty of shops near by. got a car that runs on chip fat! plenty of fish and chip shop near by! could convert a generator for power but its a bit loud! thats it! like i said Britain is screwd!!

posted on Tue, 11/03/2009 - 11:03pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

OK!!

This isn't exactly what I was looking for, but it's a start! You're thinking about a few beyond guns. Way to go.

Although... what the heck is a sulfuric acid mine? Don't tell me that such a thing exists outside of video games...

posted on Tue, 11/03/2009 - 11:26pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

well you're saying use science. so i can only assume that not everyone has a degree in physics, chem or biology. so bodge-jobs'll have to do! so a car battery rigged to blow would be the afore mentioned "mine".
it all depends on location. and as we all know battle plans tend to fly out the window in the heat of things!
one question! what kind of zombie are we talkin about?
if its the sprinting sceaming jumping ones i'd have say we're all doomed! Yay!

posted on Wed, 11/04/2009 - 12:53pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Hey, don't get me wrong, I'm no scientist myself. But hopefully we're all capable of some critical thinking, and, y'know, there's this internet thing to help us sound like scientists.

That battery thing sounds crazy to me. But I like the creativity. How does one make a battery explode? No need to get into a step-by-step, please, but what's going on in a battery that could make it explode? Chemically, what happens when strong acid comes in contact with flesh? And how quickly does the reaction occur? Would it be enough to stop a zombie?

I'm going to say that we're just talking about the classic, shambling Romero zombies. But if anyone's well-thought-out scenario involves running zombies, that's cool with me. After all there are prey species out there who are able to survive even when their predators are faster than they are. And we're so much smarter than zombies!

posted on Wed, 11/04/2009 - 1:51pm
jmabercrombie's picture

Ok I'm going with a cross between 28 days and quarantine. So a virus like rabies that super excites the part of the brain associated with anger while slowing down the upper conciseness. They will move just like us able to run jump and have the reasoning skills of a smart 2 year old. And just for you nonbeleavers this isn't that far fetched. Just look at the viruses our government has made in the past.
If you board yourself up in a normal house your a dumbass. How long do you think the walls will hold. The siding on the house is probably held on with pvc strips. Its gone in a few minutes. The partical board may last a day or two depending on if the contracter was cutting corners or not. Then what's left. Oh yeah the dry wall. Thirty seconds tops.
A concrete building with small windows or a building with a concrete wall and a very sturdy gate is what I'm looking for. A small security company like blackwater or something similar will work.
As far as guns. Your damn skiPpy I'm going to have some. There may be times you have to leave your concrete walls and look for food and water. There may not be as many zombies cause they will more than likely follow the food that runs. So when every one runs foraging will be a little safer.
Since they are still living beings and not the undead hollywood version without food or water they should start to slow down in about two weeks. Since they r hopped up on hormones and what not I gave them a little longer than a regular human.
I guess that's how I would survive. Not very sciency. But I'm not a scientist. They started this crap. Lol.

posted on Tue, 11/02/2010 - 3:20pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

And just for you nonbeleavers this isn't that far fetched. Just look at the viruses our government has made in the past.

Yes, let's. Which viruses are those?

posted on Tue, 11/02/2010 - 4:00pm
doffus of zombies's picture
doffus of zombies says:

i dont think the weed be smarter than zombies becuase in the movie *İ am legand*or how you spell it the zombies made a plan to capture will smith. and zombies run fast in that movie too and its impossıble to find a cure becuase smtih couldent find one in 700 DAYS

posted on Sat, 11/07/2009 - 3:05pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Well... a few thing.

A pack of wolves could probably make a plan to trap something too (or at least corner it), but I still think people are smarter than wolves.

Also, those weren't zombies. Zombies don't get burned by sunlight, and zombies are essentially mindless, so the things in I Am Legend... weren't zombies.

And as to the "impossible to cure" thing—Think about how long it takes teams of researchers to find cures or treatments for real diseases. It can take years and years, even with excellent facilities and lots of resources. So just because the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air couldn't find a cure for a disease working by himself in basement surrounded by monsters in the space of 700 days, I'm not sure we can discount the possibility that a similar fictional infection could be cured under different circumstances.

posted on Sat, 11/07/2009 - 4:35pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

He did find the cure. Pay attention.

posted on Tue, 08/17/2010 - 7:16pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

those are vampires in I Am Legend. Just putting that out there.

posted on Mon, 11/09/2009 - 11:56pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

No. They weren't. "Vampires" feed off blood.
They just came to a primal nature and ate most things.
The work of the Alice Krippen virus just made the infected extremely sensitive to UV rays. (Sun, blacklights, ect.)

posted on Tue, 08/17/2010 - 7:15pm
elfin's picture
elfin says:

this whole subject frightens me so.
I don't believe it will ever happen, sorry. Think of all of the diseases that would have been about in times before now, surely one of them would've mutilated and caused a "zombie" apocolypse.
Secondly, we are yet to find a way of resurrecting someone, and i thoroughly doubt something like that would just happen.
Next, hasn't it occured to anyone that "zombies" are just fictional horror characters like Freddy, or even the giant spiders from 8-legged freaks?

However, say i am wrong. Say that in 2012 when the "Long Calender" reaches it's end, and there is a zombie apocolypse. Nobody has a hope. Yes, sure, you might live for a few months. But there are billions of people in the world, and i would bet that 3/4 of those are wanting to munch on your brains.
So i would personally kill myself, than have to even consider shooting anyone else, especially people i know.
There is a science behind this theory, but it's a very far fetched and fictional science, that if ever does come to exist, will be in many years to come.

posted on Mon, 11/23/2009 - 2:26pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

3 words... mutated toxoplasmosa gondii

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toxoplasma_gondii

from what i know, it takes over the brains of rats and it makes them commit suicide by running at cats, the cat then eats it and the parisite reproduces in the cats stomach/intestine,

its probs gonna be this or either nanobots (cellular re-genesis is already being researched) or it could be a mutant rabis virus =/

ill be safe, im close to a shopping centre with a gun shop near it =D

posted on Thu, 11/26/2009 - 4:57pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Ooh! Except for the old "gun shop" problem, I like where you're going here! Toxo... good! I posted on Science Buzz last year about some new research that seemed to show that humans affected with Toxo showed very slight behavioral changes.

I've never been one for the mutated rabies thing, though. I mean there are lots of conditions that cause nerve or brain damage, but you don't hear people theorizing about how tertiary stage syphilis will be the root of a zombie apocalypse (although syphilitic zombies would be terrifying.) There are other behavior-altering pathogens out there, though, and those are a little more palatable to me, as far as a Z.A. goes. Maybe there's a post there...

posted on Wed, 12/02/2009 - 12:48pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I like JGordons take on how we have too think smart people. Whether slow or fast..... zombies WILL NOT BE SMARTER THAN US. The human brain is the most powerful tool on earth. Lets act like it.

posted on Mon, 10/11/2010 - 11:58am
DanUK's picture
DanUK says:

if i have 300meters of copper wire and my front garden is 3m × 10m. what level of volts/amps will i need to fry a zombie?
anyone seen 'doghouse'? funny british zom/com/horror! if a bit naff, the idea behind it is good!

posted on Wed, 12/02/2009 - 4:46am
BCill's picture
BCill says:

okay one thing that i noticed in your article is the no guns thing, yeh sorry but that is one of the most effective but you do have a point CRAZY IDIOTS WITH GUNS not cool!!!! but if you have resources use them like a armory for the gov near your house that allways works, and theres always one crazy old guy that has a collection, but as i was getting to you left one this out about groups, THERES ALWAYS AN IDIOT THAT WANTS TO LEAVE, so what do you do, well i would kill him because hes as mindless and will do anything just like the zombies would, and if he gets out they allll get in, me and my friends are already preparing for the this, were buying our guns and amo and hell were all in the army and get the big guns(50 calibure barrett m107) thats my baby(:, so i think we should start the zombie killers of the world socioty email me back if youd like to talk, cause when this stuff starts well need all the HUMANS we can get!!:)

posted on Thu, 12/03/2009 - 12:17pm
BCill's picture
BCill says:

i just read a thing on a parasite in rats that take over there movement and the only way they can reproduce is in cats so they force the rat to get eaten, now there saying that all it needs to do is evolve and it can do the same to us, and there for we have our zombies, there not dead but there mindless creatures so well see what happends

posted on Thu, 12/03/2009 - 2:04pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

There we go. I like this more than the gun stuff.

Yeah, I think you're referring to Toxoplasmosa gondii —there are a couple posts on it a few comments up.

But, if we're imagining a mutated Toxo, and not some other behavior-altering infection, it wouldn't quite work for zombiism, right? Because in the traditional imagining of a zombie apocalypse, the scenario doesn't involve the infected passively lining up (like the rats) to be eaten by the uninfected (the cats). Norms eating zombies? Crazy! The effect of the Toxo would have to work the other way around.

But if the aim of an infection is simply to spread itself, it wouldn't make a lot of sense for something like Toxo to mutate so that it caused extreme aggression. What's the use in infecting something that's immediately going to be killed anyway? It would make more sense if the zombie disease made the infected want to give back rubs and big, sloppy kisses. Unless dead bodies were an important part of the pathogen's life cycle...

posted on Thu, 12/03/2009 - 4:00pm
BCill's picture
BCill says:

well if you think about it since its a parasite it needs to be delivered through the blood so a bite or a scratch would infect, and another thing is the only way to fully kill a zombie is shooting it in the head and where is this thing located, its all accully kinda cool that this could really happen, you see its all really in the head, a canable is a mental condition, severe rage and anger problems, all in the mind, and when something like that gets a hold of it, were screwed and well theres one other thing we dont know what the goverment is working on, so these zombies or reserection of the dead might be closer that we think, i mean hitler was exparimenting with it, so i guess well find out soon!! and jgordon do you have a myspace or something???

posted on Thu, 12/03/2009 - 5:22pm
matty1122's picture
matty1122 says:

but if the virus/bacteria or whatever can regenerate dead cells then the host could be dead or alive, it wouldnt really matter, plus if its been dead first it wont have any conscious memories or anything ( by that i mean no resistance ) =/

posted on Sat, 12/05/2009 - 2:23pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Hmm. Not sure about that—a virus couldn't bring a dead cell back to life because viruses totally depend on cells being alive for them to do what they do. Viruses work by taking over living cells and reprogramming them to make more viruses.

Like... say a cell is a robot programed to make toasters, or something. But when it gets "infected" by a virus, it quits making toasters and focuses on reproducing the virus code, so that the virus can take over more robots. (Ok, this is getting a little stretched, but...) If that robot is smashed with a sledgehammer first, there's nothing for the virus to take over. The robot can't even be programmed to repair itself (regenerate, if you will), because, being smashed, it's un-programmable. If you introduced a virus to a dead body, the virus would just kind of be like, "What the heck am I supposed to do with this?!"

You'd need a mechanism way beyond our understanding of biology. I'm going to call that mechanism "magic," and I'm afraid magic isn't allowed in this game. The premise is shaky enough to begin with, so we have to stick to quasi-rational, quasi-scientific stuff. Unless you can back up the idea that a truly dead cell can, well, do anything, with some science, we have to find a better explanation.

posted on Sat, 12/05/2009 - 11:18pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Check it out! I made a zombie apocalypse word cloud with this post and its comments, using the Wordle site.
Zombie word cloud!
Zombie word cloud!Courtesy Wordle

posted on Sat, 12/05/2009 - 11:47pm
marshal's picture
marshal says:

if thier were a zombie apocalypse my plan would be to go to the area of least population like northern canada or a remote island because people are what make zombies. i would do it by going to a small airport near were i live and stealing an airplane then go to an international airport and steal a bigger one and then go to my destination also i would bring alot of guns with, fortunately i have some so i would not need to raid a gun store or walmart which i agree would be stupid thing to do. i know i could fly the small plane but a jumbo jet would be untested, i think i could do it but i could also just crash off the runway. reguardless i would try it any way. the key is early detection so the second i heard of real life zombies, i would begin to impliment my plan

posted on Tue, 12/08/2009 - 1:01pm
Vaan's picture
Vaan says:

I'm skinny and can run a lot before getting tired at all, i was in my athletics team back in high school, my pans rage from getting something silent like a bike to just going on foot. Traveling in group is a must if you plan to stay alive, you can't carry everything yourself without making a hella lot of noise (canned food, etc)
Think of it as if you're going on a long camping trip, but aside from that, you need to run constantly, at any given time, so try to keep yourself light and ready to go, all the time! Melee weapons are a must, firearms are too loud and will only attract more zombies, unless you get yourself a silencer, wich would be a HUGE advantage!

posted on Fri, 01/01/2010 - 5:36pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

tbh with you silencers dont silence the gun shot as much as u think, its alot louder than the films n games, i wud wont more to come the more i could kill in my area the better,my idea which ive talked about with loads of ppl was tht we'd meet up at a building with gates big fences etc like a school and then use the tables and chairs to make barricades then find out wer the nearest shops r for when we run low on supplys (we wud have already brung sum to the school or w.e we was going to and if its a school they shud have some things ther too.

posted on Wed, 10/27/2010 - 8:21pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

My goal is to take over a Walgreens with one of the steel gates that go across the main entrance. After barricading myself in, i will set up the inflatable pools that they have in storage for the summer up on the roof to collect water. unfortunately, i don't know of any walgreens with solar panels, so i'll probably have to go without electricity. i understand that i will eventually start running out of supplies, so i will set up signs telling survivors on the outside that i wish to barter. then i will barter medicine or batteries from the drive-thru window at the pharmacy for things like bunsen burners, oil, possibly weapons, seasonings to preserve things that are starting to rot, dirt and seeds so i may start growing my own food on the roof, and perhaps barbed wire and dogs on the roof to keep people from breaking in. i would also try to acquire chickens, but i probably won't have any luck. lol, i could always take up falconry, too.
i'm not sure if i would be able to sustain more than one person in my party.

posted on Sat, 01/02/2010 - 6:24pm
Left2observe's picture
Left2observe says:

Okay, first of all, your plan is already a fail. What are the chances that you'll find a Walgreens unattended? or without other humans at least. But assuming your plan did succeed. Why would people take up your offer of 'bartering' when they can easily break in, kill your dogs (which by the way would probably attract Zombies to you anyway) and then take what they needed? There are many mistakes in your idea that could very well wind up killing you. I know for sure that if I was in a Z.A and i saw your sign, you or I would soon be dead.

posted on Mon, 01/17/2011 - 1:42pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

it is very fun to play this game, but there are so many factors that decide survival before you even get a chance to act.

first it all depends on how early or late you are made aware of the upcoming zombie attack. its most likely that if you are one of the last to know most of the things needed for basic survival such as food, water, heat, and weapons would most likely be very scarce, increasing time needed to locate these items, therefore leaving you out into the open

second exactly where you are when it happens. for example living in a big city with a higher population than a rural area, sorry but all you city slickers are dead....

my final point would be what resources you already have at your disposal, if you have no weapons but food and water how will you defend yourself, if you have weapons but no food or water, how would you get it? and if you are lucky enough to have weapons food and water, just how long do you think you could hold of the population of your city, or even state??

i dont mean to insult anyone at all, i play this game quite often, but before i do play, to make it more interesting i put myself in different situations as listed above, for example, i am the first to know of the attack, i have no weapons but plenty of food and water, and i live in a busy southern city such as Miami.

try to spice up the game a little by setting some pretty interesting pre-game scenarios....

posted on Tue, 01/12/2010 - 5:53am
Isaac Slaughter's picture
Isaac Slaughter says:

There are some pretty interestin plans and scenarios posted here. Me and a group of friends have been thinking about and planning for the Z.A. for quite some time. the best thing someone could do is be ready. Have everything that you need before it happens. DON'T GO LOOTING THE MINUTE THE OUT-BREAK HAPPENS. that would be retarded and would only end up getting you killed faster.
Think about it, the second the Z.A. happens thousands of people are going to bumrush the local shops and stores trying to get supplies. They are all dead the second they get out. So take your time, and dont get killed in the begining.
If you are smart and prepared hopefully we will all see eachother on the other end of hell on earth.

Oh and dont forget to figure out a way to keep yourself occupied. BOREDOM KILLs. Litterally. try playing cards or that oh so fun game from dawn of the dead. what was that called again....... Oh yeah Holly-Wood Squares. Shoot or kill any zomd that resembles a movie star.

To summ it all up:
-be prepared
-be patient
-stay occupied
- oh yeah, DON'T BE THE HERO.

Hope i helped out a little.

P.S. sorry if it wasn't very sciency.

posted on Thu, 01/14/2010 - 10:45am
the hero's picture
the hero says:

Scientists have made a zombie-apocolyse scenario and well... even if they were brain dead walking corpses we would have very slim chances of survival.

and if they were quick and smart...

there is nothing that can describe how horrible humanity ends

posted on Thu, 01/21/2010 - 3:55pm
Pece87's picture
Pece87 says:

Ok so here is what I think. 2012 is a big maybe/what if kinda thing. If it happens Ima party like no other, and tell everybody that they were wrong, and laugh. But if it doesnt than well hey were still alive. If he Zombie stuff happens well how will you know that there is a zombie outbreak?? Do you think the government would tell everybody in the world, that hey everybody this is your government and there are real zombies gonna kill us. No, I dont think so. And a cure, hahahaha!! Thats just funny. We cant even cure cancer and etc and you wanna talk bout a cure for zombies. Hahahahaha!! If they do have a cure are they really gonna tell people?? No, I dont think so. Considering the government told the U.S basicly if the bird flu hits us, we cant do anything. So your all pretty much f#*ked. If they have a cure, they wont tell people they would sell it to make money, Or all the people who are important will be at safe and the rest to fend for themselves. Just think about how much cure they would have vs how much the virus is spreading and how many people are left and can survive. Some how the news will spread if zombies happend. Just look how everything is now days. Well anyways. I just think everybody would have a better chance thinking outside the box. If this is a zombie apocalypse, what makes you sure that the government would help its people. I also agree with the science view on it. A room full of guns with jumpy people. Umm ya, no. At the wrong place at the wrong time might just cost you more than what you thought. Haha. Ohh and 28 days later, it wasnt zombies it was rage. Common people if your gonna make movie ref, atleast get it right.

posted on Sat, 01/23/2010 - 2:47am
jmabercrombie's picture

I know I'm a few years late on this converstion but this is the way I would do it.
First off zombies would be man made. A virus like a non lethel rabies that affects a persons anger center of the brain while lowering the inteligence. Basicaly a full grown angry adult with the inteligence of a two year old. Can't really feel pain although pain and inteligence don't have anything in common when your in the zone or really angry pain isn't something you think of so this would make them harder to stop. And since they are still a person they could run as long as they feed regularly and don't have any broken bones.
If you board yourself up in a house your foolish. How long do you think it will last. The siding will last all of 30 seconds the partical board might last about 20 minutes with someone pounding on it. Then what's left the dry wall. That won't even last as long as the siding.
You need a brick or cement building. Something with few entry points. We have a few small security firms around here where I am so it souldnt be hard to find. Food ammo and water to last atleast 5 days.
The zombies are going to follow the food source. So while other jerks are running for their life trying to get to other citys I'm just going to go on total lockdown. After about 4 or 5 days I will check my surroundings. I will have firearms. Ride might even be around.
I know where cruse ships are docked not far from where I am. Fully stocked with food and fuel. So I would comender one. I know they would still be there because it takes a good bit of knowledge just to start the engins. I would lock it down so I know nothing can get on and do a full sweep of the ship to insure I'm alone. Then I would take it to the middle of the chesapeke bay after I put up a sign telling people its safe.
Now to get on board you have to prove your not infected and must have food or weapons. So to get on board you have to come up a rope ladder and me. Any sign of infection earns you a bullet in the brain. I might kill a few uninfected sick people but sacrifice is a nessesity. A group of 500 people should be able to last a few months this way.

posted on Wed, 11/03/2010 - 8:16am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I had to edit your post a little—no swearing, jmabercrombie.

Also, how about no more discussion of killing people, eh? I'm going to start deleting references to stuff like putting bullets in the brains of sick people.

Why? Because they're offensive and inappropriate, and therefore are prohibited by Science Buzz's community guidelines.

And, in any case, it's so far off topic it shouldn't be here. If you have stuff to work out, just go write some fanfic, or take a run around the block.

posted on Wed, 11/03/2010 - 9:52am
anticipate's picture
anticipate says:

I don't think about zombies that much, but I'm designing a zombie board game, which has been a lot of fun thus far, but has meant a more than usual amount of zombie thinking-of.

Anyhow, I take issue with the notion of a rabies-like disease causing a zombie epidemic or pandemic. The problem is that angry, stupid people, which these hypothetical zombies basically are, are just as happy to fight one another -- there's nothing to make them target uninfected people. That kind of feature in a disease is certainly conceivable, but it would evolve over time or be purpose built.

That said, I acknowledge that you specified a man-made disease.

I think that supplies, in the relative short term, would be less problematic than people suppose. True, there's a finite supply, but the rate at which a zombie epidemic would have to spread to be uncontainable would very rapidly decrease the demand for most supplies. I.e. many people would die very quickly, and zombies, traditionally, don't hunt canned food. Nor do they siphon gasoline out of the thousands of vehicles stuck on highways and major roads. Many of those in possession of firearms would likely die before being able to spend all of their ammunition, due in great part to the challenge of reloading.

I expect that aside from zombies, the greatest threat to a would-be survivor would be water, as JGordon has posited previously. My girlfriend only drinks bottled water, and I have a pretty good idea of how fast she, tiny thing though she is, can go through it. Our local supermarket might last her, ALONE, a couple of weeks. Plumbing would not take long to cease functioning (unless you happen to live in Rome, or another location with water sources that are 100% gravity fed -- actually, if you're going to be in a large city, Rome's probably not a bad place to go, just as long as you don't try drinking from the Tiber), and that water you save up in your bath tub won't last you long. Never mind bathing, which is probably more important to health and wellness (read: survival) than most people realize.

Avoidance as much as possible, and good information, are key to your survival. How and why zombies hunt, feed and die are necessary to formulating a viable long-term survival plan.

posted on Thu, 12/30/2010 - 7:55am
nicktropilis's picture
nicktropilis says:

i think about zombies alot and what i would do is since i live in a small town i would get the weopons food and water that i needed for a year or 2 for a couple of people then while half of us slept the others coould keep watch and we would take turns making a barricade but i would make sure to have an exit escape thats easily accesible incase they brake it down untill they do ill wait till theyll rot

posted on Sat, 01/23/2010 - 4:27pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

hey, you cants say zombies arnt real.
its like saying there arnt other people out of our galaxy. there may be so.

here in the far furutre you will wake up and there they will be, not saying its gonna happen, but cant say it wont.

zombies are so unpredictable, anything can make it happen.

posted on Sat, 01/23/2010 - 8:16pm
the hero's picture
the hero says:

if any of you have played left 4 dead or any other zombie game(s) (i have) you will think 3 things:

1: there are quote"safe rooms(or zones)" unquote to contain survivors(or infected) and protect humanity.
That being said, you are DOOMED to think that exists and even if it does, do you think it will work, and for how long?
2: there are sane people out there(there will be) but statistics show 1/30 survivors will be sane, mix that with zombies(btw thats about 1/70 when infection hits full bloom) and only 1/100 people are non hostile, but they are jumpy, and on occasion, armed. so scratch that unless you begin with allies(which odds are WILL NOT happen) you're flying solo.
3:people will willingly go out of their way to help you(ex: campaign finales in left 4 dead) get out of trouble. unless they have supplies to spare(ex. gas, food, water), they are insane and pretending to help you just to get fresh meat(aka. YOU), or they are the bravest people alive, you will not find help.

anyway, just wanted to foil your idiotic and doomed plans before they happen

posted on Sun, 01/24/2010 - 8:43pm
vapordiva's picture
vapordiva says:

In Africa, they put ppl in a trance like zombie state by ingesting a drug. but it only lasts for a while. Suppose to be a mind opening experience like the Amer. Indians have with peyote ceremonies.

posted on Tue, 01/26/2010 - 11:45am
justopia's picture
justopia says:

i doubt this would happen... because if it wasnt for all these zombie movies people wouldnt think about a zombie apocolyse... but it is really fun to think about

posted on Wed, 01/27/2010 - 6:14pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Lets think about this. Deeply of course. You want heavy clothing to prevent bites, weapons of course. But what kind of weapons? Guns, maybe. Melee weapons are more convenient. Maybe some sort of acid? Land mines? Maybe they are scared of fire? You have to find the problem, then adapt to it. IMO, carry bags of tea around with you. Antioxidants, vitamins, and once again think outside of the box. Keep moving. And get ready...something like this will happen one day; 2012 or not.

posted on Sun, 02/07/2010 - 9:32am
the hero's picture
the hero says:

Yay! Someone that listens to repeated comments by Jgordin and other people. But seriously, think like that and you just might make it through it(if it happens).

While Anonymous was talking, I noticed he said we should adapt to survive our zombie enemies. He is the kind of guy that would survive just because he planned 2 weeks in advance, etc... But how would we adapt? Would we find their weakness, how would we use it against them if we did? What would you do to make sure they don't find your weakness? How would you hide and live during the outbreak? Their are millions of possibilities, but just try to find one, okay?

posted on Mon, 02/08/2010 - 8:14am
thunderFrEeK's picture

zombies cant survive in the cold right? like on youtube people say they are going to the south pole to live intil things get better. but without doing all of that mumbo-jumbo why cant they just stay over winter? cause its been under freezing and below 32 degrees. is it possible? could they live through this cold icey weather? or is it not cold enough. but anyways whats more possible? toxic going into graves or a chemical spray that revives tissue in people? please tell me about both of thee things i was just talking about. but only isf your a genuis and you know alot about the living dead. peace out and peace around the world for gerations :).

posted on Wed, 02/10/2010 - 12:39pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I am, in fact, a genius, so I think I'm qualified to answer your question. (Technically I'm just a genius when it comes to mouthing off to relatives, but still a genius nonetheless.)

Unfortunately, we have very few zombies to run temperature/performance tests on, and so a definitive answer is really beyond our reach. But I would consider the following.

Zombies, not being alive, probably aren't affected by hypothermia, and so any temperatures down to freezing aren't going to protect you.

So, then, what is the freezing point of zombie? I'm guessing your average zombie is at least a little dehydrated, and therefore would be a little saltier than a living person. So let's say that their freezing point is at least a couple degrees below zero (Centigrade). But might there be something else in a zombie that would keep it from freezing? Heat from movement and friction, bacterial activity, an unknown infectious agent or chemical? Difficult to say, difficult to say...

Even so, the average winter temperatures in Antarctica range from -40 to -94 F, and it's difficult to imagine anything that's not producing a large amount of heat, or that was specifically designed to deal with such low temperatures, doing all that well down there. But you know what else has a hard time surviving in Antarctica? Humans.

There's a year-round population of scientists and the like on Antarctica, but they're kept warm and full through large and frequent shipments of supplies. How is that going to work after a zombie apocalypse? (Assuming one could even get to Antarctica after a worldwide catastrophic event.) You can tell those people that they have lost the game.

I'd imagine that if zombies are freezable, you wouldn't have to go so far as Antarctica to take advantage of the weakness. The environment I see out the window would probably do the trick. Again, though, any cold place is going to be more difficult for your modern person to live in without working infrastructure. And who's to say that a zombie wouldn't be up and about again in the spring? If there were something that could bring the dead to life again, what would a few months in the icebox matter?

posted on Wed, 02/10/2010 - 2:53pm
mdr's picture
mdr says:

This is incredible. If you're a genius, JGordon, then I'm the winner of a Ford Foundation Fellowship in Physical Anthropology.

posted on Wed, 02/10/2010 - 9:45pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I'm... not sure what you're trying to say here.

posted on Thu, 02/11/2010 - 1:14pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Well jgordon what would you do if a zombie apocolypse?I personnaly would get as much food and water and hed into th loft and no-one can get in just me and my family.Every no and then i wud go and check out the windows and if it was clear i would take the car to the shops and fill the car hed back to the loft and weight it out until it all dies down an the authorities kill all of them like in shaun of the dead at the end when they all kill them with miniguns.

posted on Thu, 02/25/2010 - 4:47pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Me? I'd probably just die right away.

Weird, right? But, if I'm being honest with myself, I'm not an action hero like most of the people here. I'm mostly just a normal dude, and the vast, grim statistics associated with pandemic disease are composed of normal dudes. Sad.

posted on Thu, 02/25/2010 - 5:15pm
RSnyder's picture
RSnyder says:

What would you do if the the shops had already been pilfered and did not have any food or water? What if the car didn't have a lot of gas in it? And please, can we do a little spell check before posting. Not trying to be mean here because I can't spell that great either but you come off a little childish when you misspell everyday words. If you're foreign and English is not your first language then I apologize.

posted on Fri, 04/23/2010 - 5:09am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Well I personally believe "Quarantine/L4D" type outbreaks occur frequently but are covered up. In China they began a mass slaughter of over 50,000 dogs that May have Rabies but had no proof of it... a little extreme eh? They also quarantined an entire town of 10,000 north west of Beijing announcing it had an outbreak of a hIghly contageous "Phumonic Plague" (could be a coverup) Everybody should watch quarantine, if there is a zombie apocalypse I believe it would be those types of zombies. If you were at the high levels of government you would probably want to cover it up how could you even tell people that "oh yeah zombies exist" it would cause mass panic so ofcourse they have to isolate, silence witnesses and coverup mild outbreaks. but in places like China they happen to do it more blatantly becuase they are quite a closed society.... anyway if a virus like that ever emerged Id hope I had somekind of natural immunity... even then Id probably die. But my family have a small yacht our only chance would be to take the yacht and sail out to one of New Zealand's outlying islands.... By the way New Zealand is geographically isolated so id probably hear of a infection/outbreak way before it reached NZ and that would give me time to prepare. Plus governments with biological weapons programs work on weponizing bugs like Rabies etc so i think an outbreak would occur in a target country of the nation launching the biological attack or an incident in which the nation creating the biological weapon accidently releases it or even releases it on purpose to cull the human population and get them to accept brutal and harsh measures its the most effective way of controlling people, in the interest of health so those Bilderberg group members/Elite class of the world who have thier top secret underground bunkers can be safe and rule over a traumatized population with RFID chips in thier hands...... and yes I think about this stuff alot :P

posted on Mon, 03/01/2010 - 1:52am
CinC FoxHound's picture
CinC FoxHound says:

This is the first time I've ever heard of somebody ELSE linking the impending "infected" outbreak to the Bilderbergers. Should you survive the initial outbreak, keep your eyes and ears open for me (FoxHound). Should we both survive long enough to run into each other, I feel we will be an unstoppable duo =D
I daresay you don't just keep your contingency plan confined to your imagination and the Interweb, but actually have a hand-written Contingency Plan and are a practicing Survivalist, if not a member of the military. Keep your eyes and ears open for the FoxHound.

posted on Mon, 12/27/2010 - 4:45pm
Joseph's picture
Joseph says:

I will cover two different angles, infection and reanimation.
In reanimation/parasite scenario, the human body would have no body heat. People living in subartic and artic regions would likely be safe, due to the human body consisting of ~70% water, a zombie would become slow and eventually, frozen in place. Furthermore it would have a low need of oxygen, so a shallow-water island would not be safe. However remote islands would likely be unaffiliated due to the immense pressures of ocean bottoms. Decay would eventually set in and numbers of zombies would decline within 6 months.
In an viral infection scenario, there would likely be a vaccine, however if it were a RNA virus it would have to be remade every year for each new mutation. Furthermore, subartic and artic locations are far apart and have small populations normally. Islands would be safe so long as the water surrounding them are deep and wide enough for a person not swimming or holding their breath to drown. They would be dependent on eating, and therefore would eventually succumb to starvation once their primary food supply ceases. (thats us humans)
These would normally be the best places to go, so long as you are not dependent on technology. Your best bet in a zombie apocalypse is to shed your want of electricity, at least until it has died off.
As far as weapons and armor goes, your best bet is to be light. Polycarbonate plating (the stuff sport shinguards and forearm guards are made of) would be good, but if none is available thick clothing such as multiple layers of coats would be acceptable. A real zombie would not have a stronger bite than a normal person would, so something that could stop your teeth will stop a zombie's teeth.
wear face protection. If a zombie's blood were to enter your eyes, nose, or mouth, you would likely become afflicted.
Canned food and bottled water are a must.
Infection scenario could transmit to animals too, so watch out for strangely acting animals. In fact, a mutated rabies virus would be the most likely "naturally" occurring zombie virus.
Guns create noise. Crossbows and melee weapons would be better choices in most situations, or at least used a silenced weapon (or in the case of a weapon unable to take a silencer, use a flash suppressor) otherwise the muzzle flash and bang of the gun will reveal your location and lead a whole lot of tangos to your position.
Chainsaws... not so great. Run on a power source, electricity or gasoline, both of which would quickly become a rarity. Iron pipe, machetes, axes, large pieces of wood, hammers, etc. are all better options. Furthermore a chainsaw creates a LOT of noise, which would lead zombies to your location.
Avoid roadways, if possible, travel in open fields or woods, both of which would be advantageous, as likely zombies would be unable to climb tall trees and in grasslands you would be able to both see them and avoid them.
I know this was a bit lengthy but these are a few points you should consider.

posted on Sat, 03/20/2010 - 9:00pm
tony's picture
tony says:

honestly. ive wasted a total of 2 months of hours finding out how to make weapons out of every day stuff. i'd like to think im ready, but in the end im much to violent of person to survive one of this things

posted on Mon, 03/22/2010 - 9:35pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

If a zombie apocalypse were to happen I would develop the habit of keeping a close weapon like a machete or baseball bat at all times, and just wait in your house for confirmation and info on zombies. After about 3 days, I would pack as many canned food and water bottles as much as a school backpack can hold,with a canned food to water ratio of 1.5:2, wear a jacket that is fairly thick but not thick enough to limit your movement. Obviously most people will start panicking and the military or police department will set in around places. Since the gun store and groceries are the most obvious for people to start collecting supplies, I would probably not go there. I would probably follow the military and collect a fallen soldier's supplies. I would take his rifle, bullets and grenade and nothing else. His bulletproof vest would slow me down because I don't have the intensive training soldiers have. I would keep stalking the military and collecting supplies from places close where they are. After about 2 weeks I would stop following them and go off on my own. Riots probably died down and I would barricade myself in a small grocery store or those food stores near gas stations.

posted on Fri, 03/26/2010 - 2:41pm
Chrissg's picture
Chrissg says:

I live in a town of <900 ppl. I bet i wont be the first place hit and ill have maybe a week or two of preparing.

I have in indoor pool, which would be a greenhouse for food and anything we're gonna grow (lol)

My brother and I chop wood for our fire pit all the time, we each own an ax and i bet we would be comfortable fighting with them.

Id fill up all the gas tanks we have, get the ladders, axes, gas tanks, shovels, radio, whatevers inside the house. Barricade the garage, defend the greenhouse and make multiple fire pits through out my yard that we could step over but the stumbly zombies would not.

Make a hydroxide generator with some aluminum, copper, terminals and a thermos, get some magnets and a bike and make a turbine for small power.

We would defend until A.) we had a heading to leave to B.) we had enough survivors joining to make a zombie fortress.

hell yeah,

posted on Tue, 04/20/2010 - 4:34pm
RSnyder's picture
RSnyder says:

I have given this subject much thought and I find myself wondering what I would do during the Zombie Apocalypse and how it would come to pass.

First off, if we want to be honest with ourselves, a true Zombie Apocalypse would not be legions of the undead slowly milling around looking for their next tasty treat. It will be a biological outbreak that effects the human brain in such a way that makes them go crazy and attack everything. It would probably be more like the pathogen from the movies 28 Days Later (the Rage virus) or from The Crazies.

I like the idea that Toxoplasma Gondii could be the root cause because Toxoplasma Gondii has been linked to schizophrenia in humans. There are, however, many pathogens that cause abnormal behavior in humans or can effect the brain. I have also read certain articles about prions, which, among other things, cause Mad-Cow disease.

So coming to the conclusion that the “zombies” will in fact be infected humans that are alive and not dead, one could equally conclude that these infected humans could die from anything like an infection from a cut to a gun shot in any vital organ not just the brain. Keeping that in mind you also can conclude that you are no longer actually dealing with a Zombie Apocalypse but are dealing with a biological apocalypse.

My biggest concern then becomes not in dealing with the hoards of undead but the societal breakdown that drives the uninfected to extremes. I use as my example the aftermath of Katrina on New Orleans. People were dying in their homes, unable to escape an apocalypse of their city and what you were witnessing on the 7 o' clock news was the breakdown of society. People start to panic and will turn to looting and chaos. One of my favorite lines is “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals...” (Tommy Lee Jones ~ Men In Black).

So my first stop is not to any public place. I luckily have many guns and ammunition, and JGordon is right, you don't not want to run to a gun shop or mall or grocery store because you will not have to worry about just the infected crazies (AKA zombies) attacking you, you'll have to worry about the uninfected in their panic state.

My best advice would be to prepare your home with food and water. Go buy a gun (it is the American way after all) and learn how to use it. Be ready to defend yourself if necessary and be sure to reinforce your home defenses (board up your windows and doors, etc). Then wait out the initial panic in your home. After a few days, move yourself to less populated place.

But, let's be honest with ourselves. More likely than not you're going to get infected before you could do any of this, especially if you live in a large city. So good luck and God speed to all!

posted on Fri, 04/23/2010 - 4:56am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

This has been a really productive discussion. I think we've all finally learned that the best way to deal with a pandemic disease is with guns. The W.H.O should have crowdsourced their response to swine flu.

posted on Fri, 04/23/2010 - 9:57am
RSnyder's picture
RSnyder says:

JGordon, I'm not saying go around and shoot everything and everyone but you need to be ready to defend yourself. I know you were asking for a scientific way to do so but it's not really realistic. The average Joe is no scientist. I say have a gun ready to defend yourself if necessary and wait to see how the authorities handle the situation and take it from there. The actual science that we should be looking at is the science of sociology. The under laying question has so many variables that there can't really be a clear-cut answer.

posted on Sat, 04/24/2010 - 2:07am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Well, it's sort of academic, because we're talking about a fictional scenario. (Or, in another sense, it's totally the opposite of academic, because we're talking about zombies.) But, the more I think about it, the more I tend to disagree with the guns-'n-canned food solution.

You're right—the "average Joe" shouldn't be expected to make any scientific breakthroughs with no training or preparation. But we should credit the average person with the potential to think rationally, and even, yeah, scientifically.

You're on to something with the sociology thing, though. Think about it this way: systemic problems aren't solved by one dude looking out for himself. One person removing himself from the power grid wouldn't solve an energy crisis—the root of the problem (large scale production and transportation of energy) would have to be addressed for it being solved. Even lots of people just looking out for themselves won't solve such a huge problem. Think about the plagues of medieval Europe. Everybody was probably looking out for themselves, right? They defended themselves the best ways they could, average Joes that they were. But they didn't understand the threat (even though lots of people probably thought they did), and millions of people died. God forbid guns being added to the mix, you know?

What analogs or examples do we have to help us discuss such a hypothetical problem? Well, there are real pandemics and diseases, and those aren't solved by dudes on their own. They're solved by massive, coordinated efforts, based on a solid understanding of the problem. Smallpox killed millions and millions and millions of people, even when people understood that you should avoid infected individuals to avoid catching the disease yourself. The virus wasn't eradicated from the planet, however, until a vaccine (a scientific endeavor) was distributed worldwide, and millions of people were vaccinated (a social/government endeavor).

Or, I don't know, I guess we might as well look at the original texts that serve as the basis for this game: the "'Of the Dead" series. Tons of guns, and people looking out for themselves in those movies, right? How do they all end? Hmm?

"Having a gun ready to defend yourself" isn't a solution to a problem, it's preparing oneself for anarchy. It's making yourself an animal, and hoping your teeth are big enough to keep you alive—to keep you alive, and nothing else. But people are better than that. We solve problems. We think things through, and we help each other, and we imagine the future. We're all average Joes, and we can still do that. We just need the right tools. The right tools aren't guns, they're science and ingenuity, and all that.

Sorry to be a killjoy. I know I started this line of discussion, but whatever. This is a science website. Save the guns for Left 4 Dead. A plan that involves a backpack full of weapons means everybody dies (except for maybe four people, but only if you're a really good player.) We can do better than that.

posted on Sat, 04/24/2010 - 5:49pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

FIrst off, I am currently constructing my own zombie plan, its just a rough sketch but Im heading up to alaska, I mean eventually the zombies would adapt and become smarter, but hopefully I'd have figured something out to prevent myself from becoming a mindless zombie :)

posted on Mon, 04/26/2010 - 2:06pm
the hero's picture
the hero says:

Again, going to Alaska may not be a good choice, you would have to adapt too, which would take years, if you're lucky enough to even live that long. How wThould you get there? Do you have a private jet? Do you live in Canada? Do you have the ability to avoid zombies during the middle of the day, and the blessing to be able to sleep at night with no chance of an attack?

There are thousands of ways for that plan to fail, no offense but back to the drawing board for you.

posted on Tue, 05/11/2010 - 10:01am
sweeney &lt;3's picture
sweeney <3 says:

I don't think Z.A. will be anything like video games and movies. If anything zombie land would be the most realistic. But I agree that guns are not the best. Also in the beginning everyone will want to go out and fight these "zombies". So it would be best to stay hidden for awhile and live on what you have. Once most of the world is less shooty and more hungry then you can make a move. Trust me, it won't take long. I'm planning on doing this then I'll hit the road. As for guns, blah. Sure, I might get one but I would rely on my melee weapons. Just for the reason that their everywhere. Also my metal bat is in great condition. I'm not completely prepared but I'm ready.
ARE YOU?

posted on Wed, 05/12/2010 - 4:15pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

guys this is not meant to be an insult its just tips

a zombie invasion can happen i do belive one could happen thats why i'am getting ready. for some people typing comments say they could survive maybe they are kids who weight 300 while they should weight
150lb or they are overweight. maybe they cant walk or run i'am making my own training if you want to join me follow this tips:

1. lose weight excersising dont take pills or try to drink something they dont work (forget about video games dont actuelly forget about them but dont be attached to them. (i havent played my tv,wii,ps3,psp over a month :)(i lost 16pound in 3 weeks woo :D)
2. learn how to jump a fence,run, climb houses or you could learn free running (if your going to learn free running be curful doing this).
3. learn how to use guns how to reload shoot them acruasy or handle them. (ps dont use weopens you know you cant use for example maybe your not strong enought to shoot a rocket launcher)
4.learn hand to hand combat then learn how to use with a knife.
5. read books about piloting boats,airplanes small or big maybe both, and helicopters.

And if you get hurt and it hurts a lot just thing (how do i expect to survive a zombie invasion if this little thing hurts) what ever you do or get hurt its nothing compare d to the zombie invasion the zombie invasion is not fun you might say it is but trust me its not it will be horro dream dont trust anybody 100% they just might trick you and leave you.

HOPE YOUR READING THIS IN TIME (I MEAN THE ZOMBIE INVASION STILL HAS NOT HAPPENED)
IF ITS TO LATE GET IN SHAPE TRUST ME I RUN A LOT FOR ABOUT 15MIN NON STOPPING WHAT ARE THE CHANCES OF ME OR A FAT GUY SURVIVING A ZOMBIE INVASION ME RIGHT

WELL THE POINT IS BE PREPARED SORRY FOR LONG MESSAGE AND BAD SPELLING DONT BE LEFT BEHIND TINK BEFORE YOU ACT THINK FOR THE CONSUQUENCES. HOPE THIS WILL HELP YOU

posted on Mon, 05/17/2010 - 12:22pm
Samurai James's picture
Samurai James says:

OK....wow....first let me just say that we are discussing something that will NEVER happen....because Zombies aren't real. They don't exist, and they never will. However, that being said, ill play along.

I would like to point out that survival of such a scenario as a "Z.A." is about as likely as winning the lottery. Meaning....if millions of other people couldn't make it...neither will any of us. However, for the sake of argument, let's just say you do survive....i mean someone has to survive right? The chances of any "global devastation event" taking out a population of over 6 billion is very slim. Humans would survive...although not alot of them. So let's say you survive, what next? I assume you would want to continue surviving....although i'm sure many would end up commiting suicide after realizing they do not have adequate knowledge to survive on our VERY harsh and unforgiving planet without the many comforts and ammenities we have today. So you ask....how Samurai James?... How can i survive the "Zombie Apocolypse"?

I'll tell you....

First, there is no need debating what kind of "Zombie" you will be facing. Fast moving? Slow moving? Can it survive in the cold? Will it starve to death? These questions are irrelevant. Everything in the universe must follow the rules of nature. Can the dead come back to life? Absolutely not....so if you want to make a "real strategy" to prepare yourself...make your plans according to a realistic situation. If you do find yourself facing a "zombie threat"...whatever u are facing won't be dead. Let me explain. Walking, movement, biting, scratching, consuming human flesh.....all these things require one other thing......energy. Dead or alive....without energy your body does not move. Shooting a "zombie" in the head kills it right? But, without energy the brain will not function....no matter what is infecting it. Anyway....my point is that if a zombie exists in the physical world....then it must abide by the physical laws of nature. It will REQUIRE food, rest, and above all energy. This is not a "what if" statement....it is a solid FACT.

Ok...now that we understand that a Zombie Human will have the same physical limitations and a Normal Human, we can actually discuss a plan. Afterall...you cannot protect yourself from a predator that you do not understand.

So...next....what happens when the "Zombie Apocolypse" occurs. Well...let me make another thing perfectly clear. Humans are not as weak as the movies make us out to be. We, as a species, have dominated every other predator on the planet. We are at the very tip top of the food chain. We have mastered the elements, and learned to harness the power of the atom. With that being said....you have to realize that although movies show the zombie apocolypse as being a "horde" of zombies against a "few" human survivors....but you have to realize that the zombies would have to start as the minority...not the majority. The odds of an unarmed, diseased population, without any means of transportation, or organized communication, over-throwing the human race....or even putting up a decent fight for that matter....is almost a billion to one. Odds are if a zombie apocolypse occured....no matter how infectious, and aggressive the zombies are....they would be completely devastated in a matter of days....if not hours. Most of us would never even know it occured....we would hear about it like we hear about some skirmish happening in afganistan. SO....what is my theory? Why plan against an attack that has virtually no chance of becoming a real threat? No horde of zombies could undermine Human control of this planet......ever...ever...never.

So...in closing....we have learned that anything that exists in the physical universe....must obey the physical laws of nature. Zombies must eat, sleep, poop, and protect themselves from the weather with clothes and shelter just like every other living thing on this plant.

Also we learned that nothing can be brought back from the dead. It just isn't possible....so whatever we are being attacked by....it won't be dead.

Next, without access to the worlds resources, which we control....and aren't likely to share with zombies...they would die off anyway.

And finally....a starving, sick, unarmed population of zombies has no chance at defeating a population of 6 billion made up of the most dominant species on the planet.....i think they would have better luck eating rats, or bugs...something that cant kick they're ass. So i say to you....forget zombies...they aren't a real threat. Stick with planning against aliens....it's more realistic....and at least aliens would put up a fight. :)

posted on Thu, 06/03/2010 - 7:03pm
Shane D's picture
Shane D says:

OK reading your blog, lets entertain the theory that nano bot technology existed in an alien world and it killed off the alien race and now is going planet to planet invading all living creatures, controling their bodies making them function till they die, then when they die, to transport from one body to another, since food will be gone with the body being dead that they use for energy which in turn control the bodies to function even after death since the robots will be the energy controling the body, they force the host to attack an uninfected host to transport through bite or other act to transfer their bodies (robot bodies or viruses if you will) into their new host... That being said, do you agree that it is possible that an undead body could still function with the energy of a virus like nanobot? Im just saying, even you said aliens are more realistic, but what if the alien were robot and actually CAUSED the zombie apocalypse this talks of do you not agree that this is more logical form of zombie?

posted on Sat, 10/16/2010 - 9:01pm
CinC FoxHound's picture
CinC FoxHound says:

I want to point out to you, first, the validity of what you are saying. You are very correct in recognizing the power of the human race: we are the special that evolved - physically, mentally, emotionally, socially, technologically, and spiritually. We think... about our actions, each other, our emotions, our very world. Some of us are even old and wise enough to think about our thoughts, before our thoughts are even entirely coherent. You are very right, from the "We are humans" perspective we would most likely quell an "Infected" outbreak.
However, consider the expanse of human history: everything we ever thought we knew, we eventually realized was WRONG. We had each other figured out, we had the world figured out, we had the universe figured out. We had spirituality, then spirituality turned into philosophy, which turned into advanced arithmetic, which turned into physics, which turned into molecular, atomic, meta- and partical- and optical-physics... Do YOU see where I am getting with this?
WE ARE HUMANS. For better and for worse. If you want to get crude and insulting, human beings are a very young, crude, and immature race, compared to the aliens you speak of. If we survive the next hundred thousand and million years, we will be a species unrecognizable to what we are today. There is no such thing as fact.
There are only seven Physical Laws of the Universe that we know if. And, according to what we currently "know" and what we currently experience here on planet Earth, that's it, there is no more. I refuse to believe that this ever-expanding universe is absolutely limited to what we experience on Earth. From a philosophical point of view, we humans only know and experience what we choose to experience. Our perception is limited. Ever hear that we only use a fraction of our brain power? Imagine us using all of it, how the future would change, how we could rewrite our textbooks and change the course of our history and knowledge. Consider the Large Haldron Collider and what it could show us. What if we gave proof of a fifth dimension (with time being the fourth) and we could experience once we truly discovered it? What if we discovered more about Dark Matter or the so-called God Particle?
Currently, we know of Seven Physical Laws of the Universe, we know of time moving in one direction (into what we perceive as the future), we know that the key ingredients to life here where we exist are water, carbon, and energy. Our knowledge and experience are limited to our perception. What if our little, 3-dimensional, one-way time, bubble was introduced to something new? A new kind of energy.
You are a human. You don't know any more or any less and anybody else on this planet, no matter how book smart or philosophical you or another might consider themselves. The human race will be in for a rude awakening when people like you, who think that we truly have all the answers, have all the power.
Consider your energy and how little of it you truly know. Energy surrounds us, engulfs us, gives us life, gives us death. It is all-knowing, all-being, forever-existing, and never-ending. It grows and diminishes at the same time. It strengthens and weakens at all times. The energy you use to prove your point is the exact same energy that can destroy your philosophies and prove you wrong.

posted on Mon, 12/27/2010 - 5:19pm
matt's picture
matt says:

ok i know im late to the party but i was thinking about the toxo thing. say an infected cat was eaten by a dog. the parasite wouldnt nessirily*(forgive spelling please) die. so say if that dog was eaten in a country that eats dogs would the parasite affect the human mind?

posted on Fri, 06/18/2010 - 8:14pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Ok, it seems like people are overlooking the most obvious solution: why not talk to the zombies?

They were people once, so maybe if we just peacefully discussed what it is they want, we could come to an arrangement.

When you think about it, they're probably just as scared of us as we are of them. And the more we invest in guns and traps, the more frightened—and dangerous—they'll be.

posted on Thu, 07/15/2010 - 11:16am
Pr 0d 1 g y's picture
Pr 0d 1 g y says:

Are u dingaling kidding me! U consider guns inside the box!!! What the ding is wrong with you... If ther ever is a zombie outbreak I'm carrying a ringdingdingalingding gun with me! Idk bout u but I'm not gonna stop and think about how to avoid a zombie that's running full speed at me ... It's gonna get dropped... Here some real advice...

1. Have guns at ur house so u dnt have to go to a gun store (I agree with the gun store thing)

2. Groups, only if u are prepared to put a member down if anything happens

3. GUNS, ammo, more ammo, u run out find more or good luck

4. Try and find a secluded area or empty house that's close to a town or store but still far enough away, and be sure to barricade doors and have a safe room for sleeping

posted on Mon, 07/19/2010 - 12:00am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Hi there, Prodigy. Glad to have your comment on Science Buzz in this very important discussion. Sadly, curse words are not allowed here, so I changed some of the cussing to the pleasant sounds of a bell. Sorry! :(

A few questions/points in regards to your advice:

1) Guns at the house. Absolutely. But will any gun do? I have a pastry and frosting gun that I feel I'm not using often enough. Along with a previous comment of mine, maybe we'd be surprised at what would happen if we just made something nice for the zombies, instead of shooting at them like crazy people.

2) What do you mean by "put a member down"? We have to display a united front the the zombies, and insulting members of our own groups won't help that.

3) Guns! I had forgotten about that one, but, now that I think of it, it came up before in point 1, didn't it? Thanks!

4) This is good advice. I've read that, for optimal sleeping, you really should have as dark and secluded a room as possible. Even the illuminated numbers on your alarm clock can keep you awake, so just cover it up! And no fighting zombies until after 8 am.

posted on Mon, 07/19/2010 - 10:05am
Need to Survive's picture
Need to Survive says:

ok JGordon we're not talking about snakes here you can't talk to the zombies because when they actually are zombies they hove no rational thought they only know how to survive otherwise known as the "need to feed"

And Prodigy, you CAN'T have guns because they're loud and they'll attract more Zombies.

But think of a different scenario, a virus is spreading, but not to living beings, to the dead corpses around the world causing them to come back to life .( I know this is sounding fictional but hey, we're in a new decade, anything can happen) Well, if we know that will happen, why dont we just dig up and cremate everyone. sure it'll take a long time but it's all worth it when there are no zombies. (Remember I'm just thinking of a certain scenario)

posted on Mon, 07/19/2010 - 10:20am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

While I'm well-aware that we aren't discussing snakes on this forum, I hold to my notion that we can talk most zombies out of their desire to attack (just like with snakes!).

Cold, emotionless eyes, cool, dry skin, inability to verbalize desires... am I talking about snakes or zombies?! See, for years we refused to talk to snakes, until science proved that that was a perfectly reasonable wildlife management technique. We shouldn't just start all over with zombies.

Those zombies that can't be convinced otherwise, should be relocated to a hunting-free preserve, where they can live out their lives in safety and comfort. We can even stock the park with My Buddy dolls, just in case the zombies are feeling a little bitey.

posted on Mon, 07/19/2010 - 10:54am
mossbrg590's picture
mossbrg590 says:

First off great article. Now onto the good stuff. Like everyone on here talking about "Z-DAY" is so much fun. I do however like this whole "science" thought. First off I am a Gunsmith. I am also a hunter/fisherman, backpacker, camper. I have almost all my life. I love the outdoors. Which brings me to my question to everyone, does anyone ever think about not how it will happen but WHEN. I dont mean 2012 either, I mean time of day? I have a third shift worker for 15 years. I come into work at 11pm. What if Z Day happens at 3 AM? Also, being an outdoorsman, what about weather? We here in the North have extremely cold winters. What temp does meat freeze in a freezer? For those of us that manage through the 3ft of snow for 5 months and below freezong temps of the North, just last until winter. VERY doubtful a Zed can shamble through a 3-4 foot snow drift.

posted on Tue, 07/20/2010 - 4:21am
A Simple Housewife's picture
A Simple Housewife says:

Forgive my outlandish ideas, but i would like to take a stab at this. I am thinking of a location backed by the ocean; with proper filters for sea water and hopefully average fishing skills this would make for an ideal setup. The area surrounding the house could have a moat filled with a Non-Newtonian fluid. (corn starch & water) These are materials you can find anywhere and from what i understand about the science behind it, the more force used the harder it becomes to move. If these are the slow and not so intelligent zombies they would surely get trapped by this liquid while i would be able to run across it quickly to get across. Oh i forgot to mention that this pseudo quicksand would contain lye (corrosive enough to break down human tissue). I'm not sure how effective this could be, but hell it's a zombie apocalypse at least i will get a laugh out of my attempt if it doesn't work.

posted on Mon, 07/26/2010 - 6:04am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

You had me at "non-Newtonian fluid."

Love it! You didn't even talk about guns! And I like imagining zombies dissolving as they attempt to slog through gooey oobleck. (Although, I suppose jogging across that without getting stuck would take some confidence and practice.)

I think desalinating ocean water is generally a pretty energy-intensive process, but maybe there are viable, small-scale methods. There's this, but it seems a little high-tech. I wonder if there are simple solar-thermal distillation set-ups that would produce enough fresh water for a few people?

Also, according to Land of the Dead, and Max Brook's novel, World War Z, zombies don't really have problems with walking underwater, so you might want to take that into consideration. (I wonder how buoyant the living dead are?)

Anyway, you win.

posted on Mon, 07/26/2010 - 9:59am
anticipate's picture
anticipate says:

The other problem is that your zombie moat would fill up pretty quickly, despite the lye. Perhaps even a slow trickle of zombies, disintegrating one by one in your moat would eventually dilute the mixture enough to render it ineffective.

That said, you also had me at non-Newtonian liquid.

posted on Thu, 12/30/2010 - 2:11pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Now I Agree.
!st you Need Weapons
2nd Food-Recources
3rd A Place TO Be Safe(I Suggest to be on Top Like a 2nd Floor) Cause ME nd My Friends Plan this all the time i live in a Aprtment theirs 1ne aprtment blow us And Theirs Only One Door That Leads Up to My Apt. and it has some pretty steep stairs + the door is pretty Heavy Theirs only one problem theirs a window at the bottom behind the door its pretty long but isnt to wide. Now If YOu had a House/Apt. like that Just Barracade The Bottom of the Stairs it isnt that hard. Oh and THeirs a Padio in the back you can Snipe Zombies so Anything Like That Is Good Nd Safe. DO Not Forget. Never Open THe Door For Someone UNLESS YOu Absolutely Kno That They are Alone And NO Zombies Are ARound Even If ITs Your Own Family Members Thats the mistake you go nd Save the person you love the most by doing that you kill'ed your self. Now if you Have Anything Better Than THat plese get to me on that

posted on Wed, 07/28/2010 - 12:48pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I'm not sure I understand... if you want to talk to the zombies and work out a peaceful resolution, why would you put difficult stairways and heavy doors between you and them?

Here's a better plan: hole up in a basement! Then, when there are zombies in the area, you can funnel them through an egress window, or a cellar door, or something. Then it would be you and a bunch of zombies in a basement, and you could finally discuss your problems like reasonable people.

posted on Wed, 07/28/2010 - 2:48pm
Smart Alec's picture
Smart Alec says:

Just like to make the point that there a simply millions of living animals on this planet that do no need rest. Jelly fish?. Bacteria?. Viruses? Even fish?.

Personally i would get on my Yacht. Could easily store enough food for a year. But some Water purification tablets. And solar powered ovens, All already on the boat. All i would have to bring is some fishing rods to get me food for the rest of the time..

Although if i had one way of wiping out the zombies i would use some sort of Agar gel mix to speed up there rotting. And maybe Tame rabies. Which would render them dumbfounded.

posted on Tue, 08/31/2010 - 1:44pm
Shane D's picture
Shane D says:

To be totally honest, Cracked had a good point with the nanobot theory... if we are to become zombies I would say this is a highly probable possibility, and this is why, and where, cracked did not consider... This is where it gets science oriented as well. This is possible but not in the way cracked stated. We on earth are not likely to create the zombifying nanobots... HOWEVER if there is life on another planet, what is to say that they had not already made that mistake leaving billions of nanobots searching for a new host to feed on, if they can only feed on living bodies as long as they are alive, then what is to say they dont keep us alive and control our actions making us mindless and only act on self preservation (*not the killing zombies of movies) now if there were life on other planets, its likely this could have happened by now and these bots already exist somewhere in the universe moving around from planet to planet feeding on life on each planet until it expires completely and then moving on to the next. In this case, there would be no escape, nothing anyone could do... you would have to know it was going to happen BEFORE it happened and locked yourself in a bomb shelter with NO vents and air tanks life support for YEARS to live the rest of your life in, as for saving the world... it would be done, man wouldnt be the only thing these bots would feed on, they would feed on ALL life... the only hope would be POSSIBLY a world wide sudden EMP shock that MIGHT kill the nanobots, but that kind of power and technology will never be seen and even if it were, it would send us right back into the dark ages for a LONG TIME afterwards.

posted on Sat, 10/16/2010 - 8:45pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Like alot of people on here i feel alot better knowing that i'm not the only sicko that enjoys the thought of a Z.A. :P.

posted on Mon, 10/25/2010 - 6:07am
Jazz616's picture
Jazz616 says:

Listen, I've read through most of the comments and the only rational mind seems to be JGordon, not with all the science crap, but with considering every single way a plan can be exploited and you can end up getting munched. He's the type of person I would like to have by my side when the apocalypse hits.

Though here is what I would do if an apocalypse hits and even before it. I will be stating my POV and probably mix up my ideas, so try to keep up if it's not too confusing.

Firstly, you have to access how many zombies there could be out there and at the rate that people are turning, so let's assume you live in a small little town with about 2000 people maximum; and wherever you turn you see zombies and no people, then it's safe to assume half the town or all of the town is already shambling around looking for something to chew on.

Most small towns have their own little 'power supply' and all that fancy stuff that will be VERY coveted if a zombie invasion starts.

Firstly, general water or tap water won't be too safe to drink after the first week of the invasion as corpses will probably be littering the water supply and even with cleaning centers it won't help much as the maintenance will be non-existent; as they would be dead or shambling.

Bottled water can last 2 weeks after being opened before bacteria and algae grow in it, though it can last forever if it's still closed; won't taste too great after a few years though.

Bottled water is EASY to come by as it is a general item sold in ANY store and it's not too expensive, unless your idea of bottled water is flavored and sparkling.

IF this small little town is hundreds of miles away from another town it's perfect. Especially if you have a group of un-bitten humans to go with you.

2000 zombies aren't that many to kill, especially if you have the ammunition(I'll get to that shortly).

Most small isolated towns are surrounded by a forest, which can work to your advantage if you and the survivors want to construct a palisade.

Since the bodies would be disgusting to have in the town and probably a health hazard that no one would want to deal with they would need to be disposed off.

Building a pyre to dispose of the bodies won't be a bad idea, but if there is a funeral home nearby with cremation equipment it could be more convenient and attract less attention to yourself or those with you.

Fuel will probably be difficult to come by as it will all have been used up by panicky people, though there are substitutes that work, but is known to damage your car, one of these is vegetable oil.

Though with the amount of 'empty' cars just lying around for you to take control of you'll probably have enough substitute cars to waste and vegetable oil isn't exactly rare and not many people would've thought to use it if they ran out of fuel; so the supply will be abundant; though if it is rare there are other substitutes out there.

I don't out rule the idea of guns at all as they will be an imperative tool to survive, especially if you need to quickly dispose of a horde of zombies or maybe just one.

If a gun shop is empty or inaccessible there are plenty of other places you can find guns, 1 out of 20 people (estimated guess) own a gun, so you can go and look around in their homes, there are airbases, army bases, police stations, shady gun dealers and of course, dead bodies as I believe some people would've taken on the zombies with a gun and probably died in the confrontation without shooting the last round.

If you're lucky you'll find an idiot who decided to carry twenty guns and once with a wheelbarrow of ammunition to tackle the zombies and ended up dying.

There is an interesting thought that has risen with me; it is whether zombies will only attack humans or animals and each other as well?

Unless a zombie emits a specific pheromone that separates it from us, (and I'm not talking about the smell of decay) they should see us at the same species.

IF they see us at the same species isn't it only natural they would have aggression towards each other as well? And what if it's not Hollywood zombies, but humans that are deranged and cannibals? Would they not consume each other as well?

Anyway, I'm probably using up all my space here if there is even a limit so I will cut it short for now. If this thread is still active I will continue to post my ideas and how I feel if anyone agrees with me.

posted on Thu, 10/28/2010 - 10:33am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Guys! I've been reading up on zombies, and I've learned some really useful new stuff!!

I guess only a tiny percentage of zombies are actually aggressive, like one in a few thousand. The aggressive gene actually causes their metabolisms to go into overdrive, and their own bodies get used up over the course of just a couple days. And usually aggressive zombies are so isolated from prey by the far-outnumbering non-aggressive zombies that they're basically harmless.

And most zombies, the non-aggressive ones, can't even pass on the zombie virus. They're like male mosquitoes—they just sort of wander around eating flowers. Seriously! Flowers!

I guess there's really nothing to worry about. This is the real deal! It comes from Jaime Sommers' "From Djumbee to Zombie: The Evolution and Anatomy of The Nightmare of Civilization," and Dr. Steve McGarrett's seminal text "Surviving the Dawn: Undead Systems Theory."

Some folks (like A. Morton Micelli in his essay, "The Revenant Ruse") even think that the "predatory zombie" concept was invented and leaked into popular culture by the big pharma/NRA public relations contractor, Riggs, Murtaugh and Getz, in a ploy to get the public to purchase more vitamins and guns.

Wow. Just wow.

posted on Thu, 10/28/2010 - 11:45am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I've already seen one response to this comment, but I'm afraid I couldn't publish it. It just hit a little too... well, it impugned the names of these hard-working researchers.

(You know who you are, Anonymous. We'll have none of that. As if, whatever else their experiences, their work counted for nothing. Shame! ... Plus, you missed one.)

posted on Thu, 10/28/2010 - 4:35pm
Jazz616's picture
Jazz616 says:

I don't know about the harmless theory of zombies... no one can say they know for sure what zombies will be like.

I'm not packing away my guns until I know for sure, though if it is like that... you say the 'harmless' one will not be able to transmit the virus...

Though if the harmful ones can, what happens if they bite this 'harmless' ones. Won't this turn into an epidemic anyway?

As we've seen from ALL the zombie movies: It only takes one.

posted on Thu, 10/28/2010 - 12:25pm
Jazz616's picture
Jazz616 says:

There are a thousand theories about the 'creation' of zombies out there and only a few are plausible as we all probably know. They won't just suddenly crawl out of the ground or rise from their ashes, though, unsurprisingly, some people believe this.

I think the creation of zombies will be through the mutation of various viruses infecting a single or a handful of individuals at some point in the future.

Though I do believe the mutation of rabies will play a crucial role in the 'creation of zombies' if I may put it that way, as the disease can be transmitted through a bite it's a perfect candidate.

No one can say whether they will be aggressive or not, but what we know from rabies is that they do make the 'host' unnaturally aggressive and an encounter with a rabies infected host will most probably result in a fight.

It is also known that rabies can make the host lose the capability to feel pain on certain parts of the body, not always, but sometimes.

Now imagine that this rabies virus mutates, making the host completely immune to pain and aggressive as hell. We all know that rabies causes an unnatural fear of water, thus the possibility of them taking a sip of water or a dip in the water is highly unlikely.

What is another source of water? Sure, you can get water in the roots of plants or you can get it in the blood of humans, the plasma I believe is mostly water and most of the human body consists out of water as most of the body consists out of blood, which contains the water.

Sure, this is not enough to make the host/human/zombie go and eat people, despite the aggressiveness the rabies will provide.

So let's combine this virus with toxoplasmosis, for those of you who don't know what this is, it's a parasitic disease that makes rats 'attracted' to cats, as this parasite can only breed within the bowels of a cat.

Now imagine these rabies infected hosts are 'attracted' to us with an insane aggressive streak in them, wouldn't they attack? Taste the blood? Perhaps even feel quenched of their thirst? Even if they just take a bite and the person they bite turn into an infected unit it will soon turn into an epidemic and the population will turn as we know it.

We all also know a rabies infected host doesn't live very long so the virus won't last forever, but we'll probably sit with 80% of our population and I doubt we'll ever recover from something like that.

Feedback is welcome, even if it's negative.

posted on Thu, 10/28/2010 - 12:48pm
Chaz's picture
Chaz says:

I feel a little late on this, but I recently read a book called 'Feed' by Mira Grant.

'The year was 2014. We had cured cancer. We had beat the common cold. But in doing so we created something new, something terrible that no one could stop. The infection spread, virus blocks taking over bodies and minds with one, unstoppable command: FEED.'

I can't remember it too well, but I know that (somehow) the internet stays up, and people start re-inforcing their homes and taking blood testing kits with them everywhere. Armed guards stand at gates to almost every city, and you can't get in without a blood test.

Every city gets a danger rating, 1 being illegal to enter and 9 being the safest to exist.

This probably didn't help anything, as it's just a book.
But if you read it, it's very well thought out.

posted on Fri, 11/05/2010 - 3:00pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

The only way to get water would be from underground, because obviously water plants would go down and despite a river sounding like a good idea, there would be blood around and if any infected got into it, you would drink the virus. Also this causes a massive food problem because canned food is available, but you have to keep moving around to find different places to get food, and wells don't come around very often.
I would recommend pull trailers to carry supplies because you would need mobility for food. Also if you have guns to hand, great, but dont go for guns. Thats what everyone would do and all the infected would be in that area. I would recommend forgotton about things, like DIY tools and emergency axes.
Also travel in groups, but small and people you enjoy the company of. The last thing you want is people driving you mad and causing lack of rest and sleep. The ability to socialise is extremely important to all humans.
Maybe you've played the game "last stand 2". Its a good concept but dont bother going to maybe 'a last boat promising safety'. The excitement would most likely attract a horde, which would also give you a perfect opportunity to raid shops, and if absolutely necessary, guns or weapons, only if you felt you absolutely needed them.
To be honest i would head to labs, they're isolated and maybe some scientists have managed to survive. A cure or vaccine would be the only thing that would end the nightmare, or at least make it better.
Also one member of the group should have a solar panel wired to a radio, to search for messages. Any messages you pick up, listen to, and evaluate.
The guidelines i would recommend are:
If its a large group of people, stay with your group unless you need supplies desperately.
Think about:
-How do they get food and drink? (read above to find out how it should be done)
-Energy? Do they use the internet? Would they take a 'last boat out'?
And finally- What is their long term plan??? How long do they intend to survive for the way their going now?

There is so much to think about that we take for granted, but surviving is a major problem. Become simple. How did the cavemen survive? I've put a lot of thought into that and its almost the perfect template on how to survive as basically as possible.

Also, think of night shifts, or barricades. Can't stay open at night. Think about where the zombies would be - hospitals, military bases, large flat blocks and housing estates. Go for the city outskirts, they're perfect.

ZOMBIELAND- brilliant film. Perfect zombie survival guide. Only flaw that I could see was cars - i imagine fuel would be scarce. Double tap could save your life. Toilets - be guarded, no matter how stupid it sounds, also be prepared to get up and run. Cardio, I imagine zombies would actually be slow, lurching and limping. But i may be wrong, be prepared.

Remember to wash. Keeps morale from slipping and helps against infections.

Finally, more weapons. Think normal. If someone broke into your house, how would you protect yourself. Heavy blunt objects, causing massive trauma to the brain, spades, could sever heads with enough strength, pitchforks could rip out hearts. Guns, I repeat from earlier, DO NOT TAKE RISKS FOR FIREARMS UNLESS ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY. If you have one, great. Save your ammo, don't use it for fun, or to help against small raids. And, one last note, dont take point, but dont leave other people to do it. Rule 17 : Don't be a hero. That applies to everyone.Take point together. All fight. dont think 'i'll just let the others get this one'. HELP OUT.

posted on Mon, 11/29/2010 - 4:31pm
The hero's picture
The hero says:

Apparently a while back on Cuba, this guy poisoned people and made them look dead even though they were only near death. After the funeral, he revived them, but when they were revived he slowly made them mad. After they were pretty much mindless, he made him into his personal servants. This is the only recorded form of an actual zombie, so in a way, Jgorden was right.

posted on Tue, 12/07/2010 - 4:39pm
joeytothemaxbaby's picture
joeytothemaxbaby says:

When the zombies do come you have to be in a open place or at least if you're inside a building you have to have at least three or four escape roots, also these zombies are with other zombies all the time and don't attack eachother well its most likely because of the smell so just kill a few of those suckers tie them to you're car and go. for the whole car breaking down because of the there being to many zombies get a big ass snow plow and drive. Never stay in one place and only get in a group of two or three and you'll live chances are it willl only last a few weeks anyways, cause they don't stop rotting and they bloat and animals will eat them. Also keep and blunt object for when you run out of ammo.

posted on Sun, 12/12/2010 - 5:06pm
rockywp's picture
rockywp says:

A zombie apocalypse!! I hope that it wont be like in Resident Evil.

posted on Tue, 12/14/2010 - 12:54am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Oh, see, I hope it will be like in Resident Evil. That'd mean there would be boxes of ammunition sitting in every desk drawer and closet, and mysterious, health-restoring herbs perched conspicuously in the corners of rooms. I survived Resident Evil. But Zombie Apocalypse? I don't know why everyone is getting their hopes up...

posted on Tue, 12/14/2010 - 11:40am
Jazz616's picture
Jazz616 says:

I definitely don't want a zombie apocalypse to happen, I hate zombies from the bottom of my heart. Irrationally, they're the only thing I fear. And no, it's not because they want to eat me. It's because I can't stand the idea of something that can't think or fear; it drives me crazy.

I agree with JGordon, it would be awful if it happened, there is no reason to be excited about something like that.

Everyone you know, love or hate will die. You will be alone if you survive and might even be faced with the decision of killing a loved one if they get infected.

I would put a bullet through my own head if everyone I love died, the only reason I would try to fight would be for them, to protect them. If they died, there would be no reason to try.

Perhaps you don't understand, I'll elaborate.

I'm unable to produce offspring, thus I won't be able to help repopulate the world.

I'm not a scientist, I'm a writer, thus I won't be able to help medically or scientifically to eradicate the virus.

The only survival skills I have is when I went camping every year, thus it is minimal.

I don't like people so I won't be able to form a group or lead one.

The only people I like is my mother, my sister and my only friend. For them I would kill every zombie I find with my bare hands or put myself in the crossfire to save them. But without them? I am nothing. I would have no purpose in live.

Though I would try and kill as many zombies as I could, leaving the last bullet for myself.

There is no other way for myself, thus I wish this apocalypse doesn't happen, it would deprive me of the people I require to live and force me into submission.

It would kill me.

posted on Thu, 12/23/2010 - 10:53am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Jazz, I agree with you, but this is really depressing.

Listen, if there's ever a zombie outbreak, you, your mother, sister, and friend can meet up with me, and we'll all just play tennis or something. (We'll do a rotating doubles thing.) That way, when we get eaten, at least we'll have had a nice afternoon first.

And I know what you're thinking: "I don't play tennis, I'm a writer." Me too, Jazz, me too. Unless your family members are all pros, we'll all be starting at the same point, and we can just have some fun hitting the ball back and forth.

posted on Tue, 12/28/2010 - 12:38pm
Nick&lt;3Emily's picture
Nick<3Emily says:

Honestly, I would get a Diesel powered engine that can sit in a vehicle for quite a while, I would grab an ar .22 cal and board up my windows and sit at the front door all day waiting for some sorry mutated citizen to come in, but seriously, the only way to live is to wait it out, make a treehouse near a lake, ration food and limit your group to around 8 people, because even if they're undead eventualey they will decompose not even your sissy little T-Virus can last longer than 10 years max. Clothing wise, leather, I mean if you think about it leather is hard to "bite" through. Weaponry, Just have 1 person have shotgun, 1 have an AR, 1 have a submachine gun, 1 carry a Thumper or heavy weaponry, just in case they have Left 4 Dead Tanks or Huge hoards of zombies, and everyone would need a katana, and a pistol ,40 cal, myself I would carry an MP5k and a .357 magnum and would keep far away from the city, and a cyanide pill on me incase I get trapped in one of the movie scenes where when they get surrounded and they put a gun to their head and it goes "click". And if I was traveling I would go North where it's more sort of isolated.

P.S I'm only 12 so sorry if it's not too sciencey

posted on Mon, 12/27/2010 - 3:56am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Sitting in a tree house from ages 12 to 22 is going to be rough, Nick (or Emily?). I mean, you probably wouldn't be the first person to do it, but you're going to miss out on a lot of stuff. Prom, for one.

I hesitate to bring it up, but you might have to wait longer than 10 years. As you say, the T-virus is a little bit sissy. This is probably because it is from a video game. Given the right conditions, some real viruses can remain infectious for decades after the death of their host. So I wouldn't rush out of that tree house.

posted on Tue, 12/28/2010 - 12:33pm
pete123's picture
pete123 says:

I have been thinking the same thing.... Ever since i have been thinking of it i get really creepy dreams and im only 13

posted on Sun, 01/02/2011 - 8:19pm
ZmbSlyr's picture
ZmbSlyr says:

I absolutely love this topic! So nice to know I'm not the only one who actually plans what to do in a situation like this. It would be nice to see more people using spell check if they don't know how to spell words like "that"... it's really annoying to read some of that stuff, but that's just my opinion though. Anyways, I have found the most informative information so far to be "The Zombie Survival Guide". It basically sums up everything that has been posted here, and gives more useful tips if anyone is interested in checking it out. Also, another good idea is to check out any other survival guides (there are some that the military use that are pretty good) on different types of disasters such as nuclear/biological war and things like that, there are lots of good tips in there also.

posted on Wed, 12/29/2010 - 3:58am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

When the zombies come, spelling and spellers will be first against the wall. What good will all that book-learning do you when you're trying to teach your guts how to digest corncobs and dirt, eh?

As the resident expert (self-appointed, sure, but just try and contradict me and see what happens to your comment...), I recommend that you prepare for the ZA by rolling naked into gravel pits, dunking your head into cold, unclean fish tanks, and trying to grow a beard by shouting at your own face.

If you do have any books, I suggest that you wrap them nicely and set them aside. You might be able to offer them to the zombies as gifts, to buy yourself a few extra minutes of life.

posted on Wed, 12/29/2010 - 5:33pm
CinC FoxHound's picture

I had this brilliant idea the other day concerning extra protection for your fortified house, building, shipyard, whatever: Pikes. No, not the fish. But, battle pikes. Think: high fantasy, savage, medieval battles, or Uruk-hai.
Should one have the luxury of having a stockpile of extra wood, be it picket fencing, 2x4's, etc., or perhaps metal or plastic piping, such as PVC, I think it'd be a useful idea to sharped them and stick them in the ground at 45- to, say, 60-degree angles, facing away from your base, at the few ground entrances (because you should only have a few ground entrances, if any at all). If they are solid, sharped them like spears, but if they're hollow just cut them at an angle. A 2x4 would be excellent if you have many of them but if your 2x4 supply is limited, split them in half. Depending on the length, I suggest burying them at least 1/3 the length of the pike into the ground, so they don't just fall over when touched, or during rain or wind.
Pikes wouldn't be entirely zombie-proof but a large number of zombies, especially fast zombies, risk running straight into these pikes and sending them through their stomachs and other major organs. If you're lucky, depending on the strength of the pikes, you could potentially have some zombies spearing themselves in their heads or throats, or even damaging their spinal cords, rendering them immobile. This could save ammunition, provide for entertainment, and the actual making and setting up of the pikes, provide work to do: Keep you on your toes, always thinking. We can do the whole Enlightenment-tools-technology-innovation-scientific-discovery-progression thing all over again!
Now, this could of course turn against you. If we are up against relatively intelligent zombies, like the 28DL Rage-infected zombies that see obstacles and know instinctively how to climb them, you might as well not bother. A couple dozen pike-mangled zombies might make for a convenient zombie staircase for the others. Or you might have no knowledge of carpentry, metalworking, or preparing embattlements, and waste your time, hurt yourself while setting up the pikes, or simply set them up, feel confident, and watch the pikes crumble away with all your hopes of survival.

posted on Thu, 12/30/2010 - 10:01pm
Joao's picture
Joao says:

Are you guys serious?..
Think about what your saying, it makes no sense.There will be no zombie apocalypse, WAKE UP.

posted on Mon, 01/10/2011 - 7:25pm
The Hero's picture
The Hero says:

Joao,
We have this topic to talk about the POSSIBILITY of a zombie apocolypse.

Everyone else that has talked about guns, treehouses, giant armored cars, etc.,
We have this topic to talk about the science of things, not how you have a treehouse and an armored car that runs on enough gas to make this entire planet run out in an hour an a half. Talk about science, not weapons.

posted on Tue, 01/11/2011 - 3:20pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

On one hand, Joao is 100% correct: there will never be a zombie apocalypse. (I mean, never say never and all that, but I'm going to finish plans for my unicorn ranch before I give too much thought to zombies.)

On the other hand, Hero, I wish I could reach out across the Internet and pin a gold star to your forehead. It's the Staying On Task Star, and you deserve it. Well done.

posted on Tue, 01/11/2011 - 3:48pm
Left2observe's picture
Left2observe says:

I see the point of waiting out the Z.A has been brought up already (decay). I would have to say its one of the safer plans but the thing is, How long do will we have to wait? Being dead changes the whole idea from the living. Being alive and being dead, its more likely that the dead wont notice their own hunger, they'll probably just decay slowly. Decaying happens over a long period, where as if something were to starve to death its a much quicker process. That being said, unless you have an unlimited supply of food, water, etc, etc. Also take into account that there are many people out there who would kill without hesitation just to survive. What are the chances that they dont kill you for your supplies? I would say it would be unlikely for human survival. Soon after the humans have gone unicorns will suddenly reapear and live peacefully with carebears that can kill zombies with their minds.

I cant wait for this Z.A xD

posted on Mon, 01/17/2011 - 1:54pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

It saddens me to know how late I am to this discussion. Can I at least offer the idea of a skyscraper, with all ground level entrances barricaded, with you at the top, with a buttload of shotgun shells, pump action/semiautomatic shotguns, (the spread, of course, could take out large numbers of zombies at once from that height), and the rooms in said skyscraper, whether it be an office building or apartment complex filled with canned food, dry ramen, water, gasoline, and propane?

posted on Tue, 01/18/2011 - 1:08am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

It saddens me to say it, but that isn't a very good plan. And I'll tell you why.

Shotguns actually get less effective as distance increases. And lest y'all think I'm getting into a best gun debate (and I think I've made it clear here that no guns are best), there's sciencey stuff involved.

Shotgun shells, as you know, are packed with little lead balls called buckshot. With bullets, all the force of the exploding gunpowder is put on that one projectile, but with shotgun shells the force is divided up between the pellets. If your target is close, that can cause lots of damage!

But the further away your target is, the less damage will be caused in any one spot, because the pellets are constantly spreading away from each other. See, at 40 yards, the pellets of a shotgun blast will be spread across a circle about 50 inches wide. I wouldn't be happy if I were hit by that, but I think I'd be fine. In fact, Vice President Dick Cheney shot a 78-year-old man with a shotgun from about 30-40 yards, and that 78-year-old man came out of the incident pretty much fine.

But let's look at your scenario. Even if you were atop the shortest skyscraper in the world (about 262 feet, say), things aren't looking good for you and your guns. Let's assume the spread of the pellets is regular (I don't know that it is, but whatevs). Now we can use some trigonometry here:

We know that over a distance of 40 meters (120 feet) the spread of pellets is about 50 inches. For simplicity's sake, let's make that a little tighter (that's good for you!) and say it's 48 inches. Half of that will give us the radius of the spread. If we take one little section of the spread, we have a right triangle where the adjacent side is 120 feet, and the opposite side is 2 feet. With the tangent function (Tan A = opposite/adjacent) we can figure out the angle that the pellets are spreading as they leave the gun. Using this little trig calculator, we find that 2/120 = Tan .9548. Cool! That's the angle we want!

Now let's lengthen the adjacent side (the distance you're shooting) to the height of your little skyscraper. Tan .9548 = X/262 ... calculate ... and we get a spread radius of 4.37 feet, or a full diameter of 104.7 inches! The same number of pellets are spread over all that distance! And that's to say nothing of the force they've lost to wind resistance over that distance! (And I don't know of to calculate that, so we'll leave it be.)

And so, I say to you, it's not a great plan.

Also, while you're down, life at the top of an unpowered, unmaintained skyscraper would be awfully cold, windy, unsafe, and a long way from a reliable source of fresh water.

posted on Tue, 01/18/2011 - 11:51am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

PS—there's a simpler way to do that (120/262 = 48/X), but I wanted to see if I still knew how trigonometry works. The answer: sort of.

posted on Tue, 01/18/2011 - 2:42pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I think everyone is missing the point. They can make us happy when we are sad and calm when we are angry. They have pretty much mastered mind control and they have a pretty good mapping of our dna. They know how to turn genes on and of when they want. Look at people on crazy meds. Don't they look like zombies in the way they act. Its as easy as putting something in a vaccine like the widely pushed flu shot or just put it in the water supply. There are already pharmaceuticals in the water supply that cant be removed by normal filtering just from people randomly flushing old meds. If they want to take away the will of the masses that's how they will do it.

posted on Wed, 01/19/2011 - 12:24pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Who are "they"? "Theys" and speculative statements about the capabilities of medical technology don't qualify as scientific discussion.

Also, let's not conflate folks suffering from clinical disorders with flesh-eating walking dead, eh? I mean, if we're worried about systematic dehumanization...

posted on Wed, 01/19/2011 - 3:07pm
bad ass zombie slayer 's picture

if zombies became real i hoe these 3 things wont happen. 1. zombies cant run. 2. they cant use weapons. and 3. i dont want them infecting animals because i dont want mice to creep inside my hideout or a dog chasing me for miles or my last place to hide is on a roof then a 100 birds come after me. you see u half to think of what these zombies can do like a soldier gets bit and he/she turns into a zombie and starts using weapons and there military training or a scientist turns into one hacks through security doors and gets to you. and melee objects are ok but not that good and they could break and you waste all of your energy then you cant fight back or run away.

posted on Sun, 01/30/2011 - 4:40pm
The Hero's picture
The Hero says:

Jgorden... That was the best comeback I have ever heard in this forum of all time.

Anyway... A good plan (as mentioned a while back) Is to make a find a house near a reliable source of freshwater (Almost touching it if nessisary)/saltwater with a purifier so zombies can't get through that way, and make a Non-Newtonian fluid moat-type thing that is also quicksand-type. This guy has the right idea, this guy would survive the 1 in 1 quadrillion chance of a zombie apocoypse happening.

posted on Tue, 01/18/2011 - 12:47pm
pwn&#039;d Zombie's picture
pwn'd Zombie says:

This discussion has already been turned to print, read The Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks, A great book and it's quite apparent the Mr. Brooks has given this very topic A great deal of thought. Just my two cents.
Although I must agree with JGorden that firearms are not a solution to A likely hopeless scenario, Firearms however would, in reality, be a necessity as you should avoid close quarter battle with zombies. Let's face it, During the Z.A., no matter where you retreat to zombies are likely going to await you at your destination.
Again, if anyone in this forum hasn't done so, I recommend reading The Zombie Survival Guide. It specifically recommends avoiding Police Stations, Government buildings, large Shopping centers, etc...

posted on Thu, 01/20/2011 - 2:34am
stromzky's picture
stromzky says:

The first thing we need to realize about zombies is the fact that they are nothing, but unarmed, lesser intelligent humans. their way of killing you is by biting you, which is not that hard to defend yourself against. A good way to prepare yourself for an outbreak is to simply look through your closet and figure out what kind clothes you own which is the hardest to bite through.

Secondly, stay out of sight and stay quiet, the zombies have no reason for randomly breaking into houses.

now i could go on ranting about zombies like everyone else is on this site, but instead i´m just gonna leave ya´ll a link to this fanfiction which is basically a more detailed version of my zombie plan, if anyone find any flaws in this plan, you´ll be the first :) so give it a shot.

http://www.zombie-nation.net/forums/showthread.php?t=14867

posted on Thu, 01/20/2011 - 7:03am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

I would say that the item I own that's hardest to bite through is... my mouth guard? I'm not sure how that will help me survive the zombies.

Your fan-fic is, like, a million pages long, so I'd recommend that people just read this one instead. It's called "Stormy Night."

Thunder growls, and the stuttering, irregular lightning that rips across the sky illuminates strange, twisted shapes through the window.

But inside, JGordon and Chris Storm are warm and happy, and their only challenge for the evening is to bake the best cake their school has ever seen. After all, tomorrow is the judging day for the bake-off, and Chris and JGordon have some pretty big promises to live up to.

"I can't believe you promised the principal that our cake would be the best cake he'd ever eaten!" Chris moaned.

"It will!" promised JGordon again.

"But why did you have to promise that, if it wasn't, we'd wear dresses to school for the rest of the week?"

"Trust me, Stormy, trust me." JGordon reached for the flour.

"No!" Shouted Chris, and snatched the flour bag away from JGordon's hand. "I'll make the cake. I don't trust you to do it right, and I'm not wearing a dress to school!"

"But it needs more flour!" Insisted JGordon, grabbing hold of the bottom of the bag.

"It needs more eggs!" shouted Chris, tugging back on the bag.

"Give it to me!"

"No, you give it to me!"

POOF!!!

"Oh, no!" They said together. Their tug-of-war had torn open the paper bag, completely covering the kitchen—and both of them—in cake flour.

"Oh, no," said JGordon again. "Mr. Romero!"

Mr. Romero the cat had also been unlucky enough to be standing in the kitchen when the flour exploded. His gray tabby coat was now bright white.

"Meow," said Mr. Romero.

"Ha ha," said Chris.

"Ha ha ha," said JGordon, and soon they were both rolling on the floury kitchen floor, weeping with laughter.

*ding-dong!*

It was the door bell!

"Oh, no!" Said Chris. "Jones and Hannah are here already!"

"What are we gonna do?" cried JGordon.

End of chapter one.

Pretty good, eh? And I'm not too humble to say that I think it's one of the more informative (and fun!) posts on here.

posted on Thu, 01/20/2011 - 11:09am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

dont you wonder why that in zombie movies it starts when the world is doomed and everyone are dead? it could not happen. there is no way that humans could be wiped out by some mindless fools, that has no logic thinking, no tactics, no weapons. how many humas is it in this world? many billions, and there is a reason for that. we are the perfect murderer. plains, chopper, guns, boats, bombs, massive machine guns, satelites, gps heat seeking missiles, millions of military. there is no way in this world they could destroy us. jeez.

posted on Sun, 01/23/2011 - 4:46pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Guns not effective? LOL Now i will admit that using a gun store as a place to make a stand would be a bad idea, making a stop by one for additional ammo and aditional weapons however, is a very good idea, for ammo, but only if possible.
honestly,for my #1 choice, I'd hole up in a walmart. They have guns and ammo. food, dirt for planting, seeds, fruit bearing plants possibly in garden section. generators and even gas. Not to mention pretty much anything else u can imagine.
It has everything people would need until we can make a contigency plan. And with the ability to actually produce some food, combined with the huge stockpile on non-perishables you could hole up there quite a while.

As far as only crazy people having guns. The best counteraction to that is for sane people to have guns, and NUMBERS, Yes, there will be a lot of crazies (just like there is now) But not every person who has a gun is "crazy". Nor are crazy people very good at teamwork. Not the bad crazies anyhow :p

Many non crazy gun owners ( and the good crazy ones) would welcome the tacticle advantage that having more people to watch more areas. You would need a minimum of 3 people. (8hr shifts 2 on 1 off , 8hrs each)
Machine gun? yah right, unless you have a semi full of ammo to start. Not to mention ammo would be difficult to find and maintain. It goes fast. Not to mention after 1 burst your accuracy goes out the window.
Your bestfriend will be a shotgun, 00 buck, 12 guage tactical or 10 if u can handle the kick. You can practically reload as your shooting. For me a 10 would not work, I'm 115lbs so the 12 guage with non-magnum rounds would work. Anything more than that for me would make my shoulder useless in about 5 shots lol. Its pretty hard to miss with a shotgun even when your scared. Thats why I like them. Even if you dont get a headshot for the zombie kill, you will at least have lots of knockback/stopping power. And ammo for shotguns is plentiful (especially here in Texas :p)
Other than shotgun, the only other really useful weapon would be a long range rifle/scope, for curing bordom on those long days and nights of zombie population control.
And if you just HAVE to have an automatic, Id reccomend an AA-12 automatic shotgun, but good luck getting one without a class III dealers license or military contact lol - Michelle

posted on Wed, 02/02/2011 - 1:47am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Walmart has everything people need, Michelle, except for love. You'll find that out soon enough, in your cold, lonely, post-apocalypse

posted on Wed, 02/02/2011 - 10:47am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Here is a scientific, mathematical proof of how far a zombie outbreak would realisticly spread,
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8206280.stm
This is a great article I found that is written about the results of a mathematical equation used to determine how hard it would be to get rid of zombies, alot harder than people would think, this clearly shows that even an outbreak of slow moving zombies would be a serious danger unless quickly met with extreme military force, over a sustained period of time. This article basicly says that a zombie apocalypse is possible if the right disease comes around.

posted on Wed, 02/02/2011 - 11:10pm
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Thanks for the link. I actually wrote a Buzz post on that study a couple years ago. here's the link.

I'm not sure I'd call it mathematical proof, or evidence for the possibility of an outbreak, so much as a model exploring the outcomes of an outbreak of a disease with the (fictional) symptoms of zombitis.

Pretty interesting, though, and a good example of how math and modeling can be used to help deal with a pandemic disease. And a zombie scenario is so much more fun as an illustration than boring ol' influenza.

posted on Thu, 02/03/2011 - 10:36am