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Humans vs. Zombies is a club at Western Washington University.

The WWU Humans vs Zombies Club puts on various events every quarter at Western.  Activities include two quarterly, 8-day-long games, weekend mini-games, one-night building clears, and Zombie Prom. The Club is run by the HvZ staff, who act as Moderators during gameplay. While WWU HvZ does not hold regular club-wide meetings (only the staff meet regularly), if one judges the clubs size by the number of people who play in the week-long game sessions, WWU HvZ is the largest club on campus.


History:

Pre-Founding: The very first instance of any HvZ-type of game was played by members of the WWU track team. It was unofficial, and there were no safe zones, time limits, boundaries, blasters, or any way of stunning zombies. The rules were simply: If you get tagged by a zombie, you become a zombie.

Fall 2009: WWU HvZ was origonally founded by Matt Weiser who started by playing among friends in Nash Hall. The game gradually grew bigger and bigger. Weiser selected people to help him run the games but ultimately had full say on all matters. Weiser graduated Spring 2010, passing leadership to Trevor Ulrich.

Fall 2010: The fall game of 2010 was cancelled midway through due to multiple rule violations and campus disturbance. The game had a much higher player population than previous games (450+) and the limited number of moderators were unable to have enough pressence to enforce game rules.

Post-Fall 2010: Following Fall 2010, Jon Geller assumed leadership of the club and worked with Campus authorities and the remaining moderators to overhaul the games rules to allow for the club to continue their events. The overhaul also extended to the club's leadership structure and multiple officer positions were created to attend to different aspects of the game. Over 20 new moderators were also recruited and trained so as to attend to the rule enforcement issue that arose in the Fall 2010 game. The Spring 2011 game proceeded with all success. Subsequent games have also been successful, garnering larger and larger amounts of participants, Fall 2011 holds the record for most players at 610 players. Spring 2012 was cancelled on the sixth day due to sensativity of a suicide in Nash Hall. At first news, moderators suspended all gameplay for the day, and later decided to cancel the game out of respect.

During the time as an official, Associated Students Club, WWU HvZ has received three awards from the AS.

  • 2009-2010: Club of the Year - Special Interest
  • 2011-2012: Overall Club of the Year
  • 2012-2013: Member of the Year - Nick Bintorio (for his work on the official website).


Events:

Game sessions: The main events held by the club held during Fall and Spring quarters. The games are free-to-play, last 8 days (Wednesday to Wednesday), and gameplay is only permitted outdoors between 7a.m. and 7 p.m. All participants must attend a registration meeting for each game session where rules are explained and sign up occurs. Players are given official Humans and Zombie cards, and orange bands to show they have registered. Veteran players and moderators are not exempt. In addition to normal game play, there are also four organized missions that can shift the status quo of the game, depending if zombie or human objectives are completed.

Building Clear: The vision of Jon Geller, in Winter 2012 the club held their first building clear in the Viking Union. The event consists of teams of players going through a set course in the VU trying not to be tagged by zombies. Staff decorate the course to theme the event and set a haunted house-esque ambiance. Special rules for the event exist both to increase difficulty and ensume no property damage.

Weekend Mini-Games: Usually held during Winter quarter, a smaller set of missions are during a weekend. These events usually consist of a series of missions (like in the normal game) but usually the focus is on simply having fun and not an intense experience. Occasionally, two human teams are formed and must compete against each other while zombies attack them as normal, this is known as HvHvZ. There is a "soft registration" during the morning to remind players of rules of gameplay and to divvy up teams. Mini-Games usually don't use the website's tagging feature.

Zombie prom: A non-competative event. This event is HvZ's dance social and often is themed after common tropes surrounding zombies. Costume contests are also held.


Website

Conceived and originally built by Jon Geller, the website is a core part of the Fall and Spring games. This custom-built website tracks the Human/Zombie status of all registered players through Player Numbers. When a zombie tags a human, they are given the human's player card which has the human's number. When this number is logged into the website, the human becomes a zombie.

The website also hosts the rules of the WWU game, a list of legal Nerf blasters (that have been permitted by WWU administration and University Police), list of moderators, contact info, mission announcements and briefs, nicknames, teams, and achievements. The achievements are a mix of zombie- and human-centric objectives, ranging in difficulty. A few can only be achieved during specific times of the game:

  • Lucky - Survive through Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.
  • Hug-Away Your Humanity - Starting on Monday (the 6th day), you can hug a zombie in front of moderators to be turned, and receive the award.
  • Shut-In! - Survive until the final day (Wednesday).
  • Diplomatic Resignation - Offer up your humanity during the final mission by a handshake (in front of mods).
  • Travelocity - Carry a garden gnome across campus during specific times, but only after zombies have claimed 50 percent of the population.


HvZ Staff

Function: The HvZ staff meet regularly to plan club events and see to other club functions. Durring game events the staff also act as moderators/referees of the gameplay. In gameplay moderators are easily identified by lime green armbands on their left arm. If the moderator also has first aid/CPR training they also wear a blue armband. 

Training: Typically once a quarter the staff opens for applications for new members from the HvZ community. Applicants who wish to join staff are first interviewed and after passing the interview are then trained in their duties as a staff member. The training program called Trial by Fire was started by Jon Geller following Fall 2010 and is a formal training system consisting of both lecture/presentation and a practical assessment.

Officers:WWU HvZ has 16 officer positions to accomadate the workload of the club. The holder of each position is in charge of at least making sure many tasks get done. Positions are as follows

  • Meetings Facilatator: Leads staff meetings and oversees club operationd, acts as de-facto president
  • Scheduler
  • Treasurer
  • Records Keeper
  • Staff recruiter
  • Rules Authority
  • Field operations coordinator
  • Day to Day operations coordinator
  • Missions lead
  • Co- Missions Coordinator (2)
  • Minigame coordinator
  • Non-game events coordinator
  • Publicity coordinator
  • Public relations liason
  • Adminisratative liason
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