Zombies invade BVU campus, humans try and stop them in continuous game of tag

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Madeleine McCormick | News Editor

This past weekend Buena Vista University (BVU), students, faculty, and staff geared up with nerf guns, balled up socks, and orange bandannas to battle against one another in a game known as Humans versus Zombies (HvZ). The game lasted two full days beginning early Saturday morning and completely ending late Sunday night.

HvZ began in 2009 and has been running once per semester every year since, according to HvZ Moderator Zach Schmidt.

The game is essentially a mass crowd game of tag that spans the entire campus. Every player begins as a human and while trying to complete missions assigned by the moderators, the players must avoid being tagged and turned into a zombie.

One player is designated as the Original Zombie (OZ) and remains covert for the first few hours of the game, tagging humans as they encounter them. Once the OZ is revealed, the players who were tagged must work to turn all humans into zombies before the weekend is over.

Schmidt took control of HvZ after his first year with the help of Myckeal Rake in fall 2013.

The moderators are in charge of budgeting, organizing, managing and supervising the game, while planning a pizza party and discussion forum at the end of the game, according to Schmidt.

“Residence Life, Campus Security, and Weekend Programming have generously donated throughout the years and are the only reason why we get to do this,” Schmidt said.

Students, faculty, and staff from all disciplines gather twice a year to play the game, something that Schmidt recognizes as a social networking tool where different groups of people can gather and get to know one another.

“The diversity is easily my favorite part of HvZ. Giving the chance for all the ‘cliques’ to get together is crazy awesome,” Schmidt said.

HvZ rounds up about 80 participants total, which compares well against other campus events like ACES or student organized events like SAB.

This was Schmidt and Rake’s last HvZ as moderators because they will graduate this spring. They have handed down the position for next semester to Hunter Anthony and Hunter Schmitt, who were trained as moderators during the fall game.

“It’s sad to give it up, and in fact Myke cried last day of it. It’s quite a huge thing for us because it’s really our “baby”. It’s crafted and hand made by us and if it fails people will let us know. It’s been quite the ride, but we encourage the players to support the Hunters in their Mod Term,” Schmidt said.

Schmidt and Rake will take the field next semester to play one last game of HvZ before graduation.

Photo Courtesy of Zachary Schmidt