Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > Roleplaying in General

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-06-2013, 07:59 PM   #1
Johan Larson
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Toronto, Canada
Default defending against zombies

I've been thinking about how a small community, such as the one seen in season 3 of The Walking Dead, should defend itself against the zombie threat. It's not a simple problem; in the film 28 Weeks Later, we see a well-equipped defense plan fail catastrophically.

To begin with, I think it is foolish to rely on any one mechanism. Any system can fail; we aren't omniscient. It is therefore important to have defense in depth -- multiple levels of (quite different) protection, so no one system has to work perfectly.

What I have in mind is four increasingly granular levels of defense.

At the top is a town guard, responsible for protecting the entire community. They are organized full-timers responsible for securing the perimeter. They set up barriers; they patrol the surrounding area; they stand guard. And they also make sure that anyone entering isn't likely to be infected.

The next level down is something like a very hard-core neighborhood watch; responsible for protecting smaller areas. They are responsible for containing the problem if it is already inside the town, and mounting an organized response. They might have alarm systems, barriers that can be moved into place to seal off the neighborhood, and specific plans for an armed response if the infected are already inside.

The third level of defense is at the household level. The goal here is to ensure that for most people, getting indoors and securing the entrances is realistically effective. That way, non-combatants can get out of the way, to safety. Most people would be highly motivated to do this, but many would benefit from at least some advice, and some might need actual assistance. (This would not be optional, since a poorly-protected household is a potential source of more walkers, and as such is a danger to others.)

Finally, at the most granular level, would be individual defense. It would be enormously useful if most people were not simply easy meat for the walkers, but could offer credible resistance at least one-on-one. To that end, make sure that all able-bodied adults have basic training in how to fight a walker, and encourage them to keep a weapon (a club or hatchet, say) handy.

Together, these four telescoping levels of protection would keep out the walkers if possible, and enable the community to resist tenaciously if they have already gotten in.
Johan Larson is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 04:10 AM   #2
RogerBW
 
RogerBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: near London, UK
Default Re: defending against zombies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johan Larson View Post
Together, these four telescoping levels of protection would keep out the walkers if possible, and enable the community to resist tenaciously if they have already gotten in.
It seems to me that one important crosslink is some sort of alert system. Every individual needs to be able to notify the community that there's a problem. If they're sound-homing zombies, perhaps flare launchers would be the best bet. Even the best zombie-fighter will get bit sometimes; communications help to ensure that an individual catastrophe doesn't become a global one.
RogerBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 08:04 AM   #3
aesir23
 
aesir23's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: China
Default Re: defending against zombies

Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerBW View Post
It seems to me that one important crosslink is some sort of alert system.
So many of the problems on Walking Dead would be solved if everyone in Rick's gang had a walkie-talkie. I now consider them to be essential zombie survival gear.
aesir23 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 08:51 AM   #4
Icelander
 
Icelander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Iceland*
Default Re: defending against zombies

Quote:
Originally Posted by aesir23 View Post
So many of the problems on Walking Dead would be solved if everyone in Rick's gang had a walkie-talkie. I now consider them to be essential zombie survival gear.
They are essential military, police and security devices in any setting which has them. Any plan that has no provisos for communication between seperated elements* is fundamentally amateurish.

*If large enough, also a central HQ with an overview of the situation derived from collating data from all elements.
__________________
Za uspiekh nashevo beznadiozhnovo diela!
Icelander is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 10:29 AM   #5
Anthony
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Berkeley, CA
Default Re: defending against zombies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johan Larson View Post
I've been thinking about how a small community, such as the one seen in season 3 of The Walking Dead, should defend itself against the zombie threat. It's not a simple problem; in the film 28 Weeks Later, we see a well-equipped defense plan fail catastrophically.
The key to surviving a zombie threat is to not have the universe and/or GM cheating to make sure you lose. Zombies win against prepared defenses because the plot requires them to do so, not because it makes any sense that they can do so.
Anthony is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 06:38 PM   #6
Johan Larson
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Toronto, Canada
Default Re: defending against zombies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony View Post
The key to surviving a zombie threat is to not have the universe and/or GM cheating to make sure you lose. Zombies win against prepared defenses because the plot requires them to do so, not because it makes any sense that they can do so.
Sure, until someone is bored, lazy, desperate, corrupt, or malicious. There are plenty of ways for the defense to be compromised. And some varieties of zombies -- particularly the ones that reanimate quickly or are really contagious -- are extremely dangerous if they manage to get through the perimeter. The really nasty part is that they don't even have to do so as zombies.
Johan Larson is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 06:46 PM   #7
Johan Larson
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Toronto, Canada
Default Re: defending against zombies

Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerBW View Post
It seems to me that one important crosslink is some sort of alert system. Every individual needs to be able to notify the community that there's a problem. If they're sound-homing zombies, perhaps flare launchers would be the best bet. Even the best zombie-fighter will get bit sometimes; communications help to ensure that an individual catastrophe doesn't become a global one.
That's a good point, but you also have to guard against false alarms. I think I would design things so an ordinary person can easily rouse their neighborhood, but not the entire community. Gongs or bells (or perhaps a localized alarm system) seem about right for the job. Coordinating with the town guard should probably be the neighborhood watch's job.
Johan Larson is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2013, 06:48 PM   #8
Anthony
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Berkeley, CA
Default Re: defending against zombies

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johan Larson View Post
Sure, until someone is bored, lazy, desperate, corrupt, or malicious. There are plenty of ways for the defense to be compromised.
Zombies capable of overcoming prepared defenses will obliterate isolated communities with essentially no hope of resistance.
Anthony is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2013, 09:11 AM   #9
lachimba
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Sydney
Default Re: defending against zombies

'World War Z' might help as itdeals with pretty much every issue raised in this thead.
lachimba is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2013, 11:48 AM   #10
Mark Skarr
Forum Pervert
(If you have to ask . . .)
 
Mark Skarr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Somewhere high up.
Default Re: defending against zombies

If the survivors don't have anti-survivors* within their group, any prepared location should hold out as long as their supplies do. Sure, there's always the possibility of being overwhelmed, but usually, it's a lack of cooperation.

The issue for Zombie Survival Media is that there is always some idiot who decides to actively work against the group. And they've always suppressed their own self-preservation instict, or, at the very least, deluded themselves into thinking something will protect them from the zombies.

Basically, the way to ensure you survive the zombie apocalypse is to make sure you're with people who can live together, and immedately execute (or exile) anyone who begins working against the group.


* people who work against the common survival.
Mark Skarr is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:44 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.