Hey survivalist, how prepared are you to survive the zombie apocalypse?
A lot of thought goes into safe-houses, survival gear, weapons, food & drink, weapons, other survivors protocols, hidden weapon caches, transport and weapons. How much thought though has been invested in physical training? Fierce Edge is here to explore the most effective martial arts and physical training methods required survive the zombie apocalypse. If you want a comprehensive guide to surviving the Zompocalypse, we really do recommend Max Brooks' legendary Zombie Survival Guide.
Obviously a ranged weapon would be the most preferred method to dispatch a zombie, however ranged weapons which are able to deliver deadly force are rare in Europe. There are plenty of improvised weapons with lethal capability found everywhere, but we need a plan for the moment you’re disarmed and now face to face with a ghoul that wants to bite your face off!
The Z Factor.
Before we begin fighting the undead in glorious unarmed combat, let’s first consider the various forms the previously alive might take:
Supernatural. Supernatural zombies are reanimated corpses; whether from a pathogen or magic (including necromancy and voodoo,) what is commonly accepted is that supernatural zombies:
- Feel no pain.
- Although they are commonly portrayed as eating human flesh and brains, they require no actual substenance and the reason they eat humans is not known.
- They are invulnerable to all injury aside from the brain. The only way to stop a supernatural zombie is by destroying the brain.
Supernatural zombies manifest with two main abilities, walking or running. Traditionally zombies are slow with almost no dexterity. Walkers are weak on their own but their true strength is in their horde. Once you attract the horde, you better have insane endurance to place as much distance between you and them as possible or know somewhere with solid concrete walls. And make sure it has an escape route, it's no point barricading yourself into a concrete coffin! Some zombies have been known to run and these are the most terrifying forms. Adding speed to their durability, these terrifying zombies very quickly overrun even the most well prepared survivors.
Infected. Infected forms are understood to be still alive, they have a heartbeat, they breathe but they’re infected with a virus which drives them towards homicidal behaviour. They don’t display any evidence of feeling pain and will push through any injury that doesn’t kill them. Fortunately for survivors, infected zombies are not known to eat or drink so they will eventually succumb to hunger and thirst. However, due to their ability to ignore physical discomfort, they possess almost extra-human speed, endurance and strength right up until the moment they die. What has been documented is that any injury that would kill a human will also kill the infected.
Synthetic. A synthetic zombie can manifest attributes from either the supernatural or infected forms and what makes them synthetic is their origin. These zombies are synthetic in that they are man-made and are accidentally or purposefully created by some sort of chemical or radiation. The vectors may include spillages, rain, gas clouds amongst others. The contaminant might cause mutations leading to zombification.
Behaviours. All zombies are attracted to noise and movement. Walkers generally attack by tangling up their victims and pulling them in or down to the ground in order to be bitten. They will carry on biting their meal until they are killed, distracted or their meal reanimates as a fresh corpse.
Infected forms are especially dangerous as they will attack with the ferocity of a beserker with no thought for defence. With animal savagery they will bite, attack with all of their limbs and have a special attack in the form of projectile vomit often aimed at the face. Their vomit is a vector for whatever pathogen is infecting them and allows for quick transmission to another host. The pathogen enters a human body through any breaks in the skin and natural openings such as the eyes, nose and mouth. It is not known how often they can vomit in any given period of time. Once a human is infected, it’s only a matter of minutes before they too become an infected form.
The X Factor.
Let’s not forget the fact that we might not be the only survivors in this world. Zombie trope sets out that the most dangerous threats come not from zombies but from other humans. Unlike zombies, humans will covet your possessions, back-stab, lie, and employ ranged combat. People in your team may succumb to fear and let you down at critical moments, betray you or they may be headstrong and become reckless exposing you to unnecessary danger.
Although no-where near as durable as a zombie, a human aggressor might be wearing armour and will feint their attacks and be active in defending against your efforts. For these reasons, knowing how to defend your-self effectively against the living is a skill that cannot be emphasised enough. If all things are equal, then only the most skilled martial artist will survive.
Next Friday, we're investigate how Muay Thai might prepare it's Nak Muays to take on the zombie scourge!