Skip

Humans v. Zombies Post-Virginia Tech.
April 12, 2008 10:47 AM   Subscribe

Commando Performance: (Toy) Guns on Campus Post-Virginia Tech - A fun game of tag for campus geeks? Or a celebration of immaturity and glorification of war and violence? Playing Humans v. Zombies after the Virginia Tech Massacre. posted by longdaysjourney (31 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite

 
I'm voting for "fun game of tag"...
posted by HuronBob at 10:56 AM on April 12, 2008


Because playing Tag with nerf guns is such a small step away from killing others with real guns, right?
posted by patr1ck at 11:03 AM on April 12, 2008


It's not editorializing when you put it in the form of a two way question. Or is it? Lukewarm controversy on Metafilter.

Myself, I cauterized out the portion of my BrAInz which has the political opinion, because it was the right thing to do. Pry my soldering iron out of my zombified claws.
posted by nervousfritz at 11:09 AM on April 12, 2008


It's not editorializing when you put it in the form of a two way question. Or is it?

Not when it's a one-line summary of the article. :) (Did you read it?)
posted by longdaysjourney at 11:12 AM on April 12, 2008


On the plus side, those who called for / enacted bannings of this thing have given us an easy indicator that they fail at life. Would that it were always so easy to know.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 11:15 AM on April 12, 2008 [1 favorite]


Did he read the article or did he not? Nervousfritz posts from the hip.
posted by nervousfritz at 11:16 AM on April 12, 2008 [1 favorite]


As a former moderator of HvZ, I think the people who have a problem with it are, basically, dumb. Nerf guns look nothing like real guns; the idea that somebody would see someone with a bright yellow Longshot or a red Magstrike and open fire is ridiculous. The idea that somehow this instills a militaristic mindset is equally absurd; one might as well suggest that football is teaching children to solve problems through violence, or that baseball encourages hitting things with big sticks. I imagine the same people forbidding their children to play Super Mario Brothers for fear that they'll get the impression that they can resolve their differences with people by jumping on their heads.

On the campus I founded a game at, HvZ has been a tremendously positive force; it's created an environment in which people who would have never otherwise met have become close friends. It's created extended social networks that broaden players' view of those outside their own subculutural and social circles. In a handful of cases that I've heard about, it's even served as a place where people have met their significant others. I've come to believe in it as a thing which brings people together and is, in the bargain, a hell of a lot of fun.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:21 AM on April 12, 2008 [6 favorites]


NervousFritz: "It's not editorializing when you put it in the form of a two way question. Or is it?"

I once tried UrbanDead and determined it sucked raw eggs through a straw. Do you wanna decide for yourself?
posted by ZachsMind at 11:34 AM on April 12, 2008


Probably the worst that could be said of Humans v. Zombies is that, in the light of the Virginia Tech shootings and other similar incidents, it is insensitive to go around campus shooting at people with toy guns. But the game must be a great way for nerds to get together and find sexual partners.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:40 AM on April 12, 2008 [1 favorite]


in the light of the Virginia Tech shootings and other similar incidents, it is insensitive to go around campus shooting at people with toy guns.

I don't buy it for a second. You could just as easily argue that it's insensitive for Microsoft Flight Simulator to be able to let people crash into buildings in light of 9/11.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:54 AM on April 12, 2008


In a handful of cases that I've heard about, it's even served as a place where people have met their significant others.

Speaking as someone who met their S.O. on a photo sharing site, I do hope this trend continues, or future generations are REALLY going to think we are all sad fucks. Mind you "I met my wife through a zombies game using toys designed for 6 year olds while a student" trumps the hell out of my version in that regard. Can you imagine hearing that as a "how did you two meet" as a kid?
posted by Brockles at 11:54 AM on April 12, 2008


I don't buy it for a second. You could just as easily argue that it's insensitive for Microsoft Flight Simulator to be able to let people crash into buildings in light of 9/11.

Precisely. People make extreme extrapolations from this kind of thing all tehe time. If you call harmless fun 'subversive' often enough, it will become stigmatised and start to take on that role. It's running around being silly. It has nothing to do with a mentally disturbed person killing themselves in a horrific manner.
posted by Brockles at 11:56 AM on April 12, 2008


Forget the controversy, that game sounds like it's fun as hell.
posted by flatluigi at 11:57 AM on April 12, 2008 [1 favorite]


Well, jeez, the cadet corps here runs all over the place with fake M-16s and no one seems to care. We even had a paintball tactics battle on campus. What trouble could some nerf guns cause?
posted by internet!Hannah at 12:08 PM on April 12, 2008


I remember playing this back in high school in the early 80's.
It even has amanual.
(Steve Jackson's "Killer")
Complete with weapons classes from safe (banana), medium (nerf, water, dart guns), to dangerous (BB guns).
Cool scenarios are spelled out, too. Circle of death, 20's gangster mob boss turf wars, fox and hounds, etc.

Cool game, but generally looked down on by authority types.
posted by Balisong at 12:26 PM on April 12, 2008


Cho Seung-Hui will not be forgotten. Sigh.
posted by wendell at 12:31 PM on April 12, 2008


I've come to believe in it as a thing which brings people together and is, in the bargain, a hell of a lot of fun.

And even more fun if you used real guns. Nothing bonds a team like a killing spree.
posted by three blind mice at 12:36 PM on April 12, 2008


Or paintball.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:43 PM on April 12, 2008


This bit from the article is fantastic:

"A few hours later, the zombies attacked in Tuttle House, a dorm, but the humans commandeered the stairwells, knocking the zombies back every time they attempted to advance. After the 90-minute siege ended, Temkin and the other humans ordered Chinese food and asked the delivery guy to pass it through the window."

I wonder what the delivery guy was thinking ...

Anyway, I liked the article. I hope games like this don't get shut down. Most the professors' comments in the article were based on the logic that playing war = being warriors. I doubt anyone who plays the game will end up joining the military. The only point I thought made sense was what if an outsider came on campus at the wrong time?
posted by Happydaz at 12:46 PM on April 12, 2008


How is this any different from playing Assassin with water guns? That doesn't seem to cause many problems, though part of the charm of Assassin is its covert and paranoia-inducing nature - everybody is potentially out to get you, but there's no way to know for sure...
posted by OverlappingElvis at 1:12 PM on April 12, 2008


As one who has played with water guns, nerf guns, and airsoft guns, and one who has wanted to play Assassin but hasn't been able to...

I really, really, really love this idea and wish it was in some way possible at my large university.

However, it'd never happen. There's no way the campus police would even think about allowing something like that. So sad.

Kudos to those brave kids. I wish I could join them.
posted by DMan at 2:10 PM on April 12, 2008


Take back the nerf.
posted by fleacircus at 2:23 PM on April 12, 2008 [1 favorite]


If it involves zombies, I'm for it.
posted by brundlefly at 2:27 PM on April 12, 2008


Of course the solution is to give all the other students real guns and tell them to shoot anyone they see acting insensitively.
posted by [NOT HERMITOSIS-IST] at 3:31 PM on April 12, 2008 [1 favorite]


Uh, we have Nerf guns in Canada too - I don't see any correlation to that and school massecre's - if more people blew off steam like this, they'd actually be socializing with other people - something which reduces the "go-psycho" instinct...
posted by jkaczor at 3:52 PM on April 12, 2008


You know what, I'm going to go along with this. Yes, it's insensitive. We should get rid of Humans v. Zombies and while we're at it, ROTC.

People, it's worth the sacrifice.
posted by allen.spaulding at 4:51 PM on April 12, 2008


There's no way the campus police would even think about allowing something like that.

The way we managed it was to not even give them the option. I went straight to the University's President at the beginning of the semester and said "We're doing this, and we'd like to work with the school as much as possible to prevent any problems." A few compromises and deals with the administration later, and all that was left was to go down to the university PD and explain what was happening.

University PD's aren't policy setters; treating them as such is just as bad an idea as it would be to have municipal PD's make laws.
posted by Pope Guilty at 5:45 PM on April 12, 2008


Being insensitive is against the law now?
posted by tkchrist at 6:30 PM on April 12, 2008


The way we managed it was to not even give them the option...

I'm impressed. How large was the university? And was it public or private? I'm at a public Texas university with about 20-30,000 people, including a fair amount of vehicle traffic throughout most of the campus. Something tells me this would never happen. I take it you have experiences to the contrary?

While we're at it, does anyone have a link to a website about this stuff?
posted by DMan at 6:48 PM on April 12, 2008


Public university in Indiana with 17K students.

The best HvZ website right now is HvZ Source.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:59 PM on April 12, 2008


I'm not against goofy toy guns that shoot soft projectiles. However, I am very much against guns that look like goofy toys. I know it may be irrelevant to this specific article, but I don't want a bank to be held up or an officer to be shot because some criminal had a tiny pink gun which didn't tip anyone off.
posted by mccarty.tim at 9:53 AM on April 13, 2008


« Older head hacks   |   Give Your Kid A Tattoo For Their Own Good Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post