A journal from one of our greatest OZ's, CMC's Tyler Lamon. Just putting it up here for archival purposes and so I don't have to slog through emails again for it.
Here's my writeup of my week as the OZ.
You fuckers better read it, because I'm putting a lot of work into it.
Day 1: Tuesday
I have 8:10 am class, meaning that I won't be out for the deadline immediately. Nervous as hell. I seriously don't want to fuck up being the OZ, because to do so will basically ruin the game for a bunch of people.
I spent last night prepping: finding out where large groups of humans and skilled individuals live. The Pomona OZ and I have already met and discussed tactics; no word from the Mudd OZ. He's on his own, I guess.
Turns out that there are massive human populations in Marks and Stark, and my entire floor in Auen is playing.
9:45 am: first kill. Two freshman humans talking outside the Hub. They're suspicious, but I assure them that I just want to know where the mission is, where the Keck center is, have we found any boxes, have you heard from the moder-LUNGE. One gets a sock off before I get him; whether he hit my leg or not is
9:45 am: first kill. Two freshman humans talking outside the Hub. They're suspicious, but I assure them that I just want to know where the mission is, where the Keck center is, have we found any boxes, have you heard from the moder-LUNGE. One gets a sock off before I get him; whether he hit my leg or not is questionable, but I let him go anyway. He's a freshman. He doesn't know who I am.
I discover that I can get a shitload of kills with this tactic: slowly approach a person and ask them repeatedly for innocuous game-related information. They're suspicious (they're always suspicious) but, when they answer, two out of three will let their gun waver. If the gun barrel moves away from you, lunge. If they keep vigilant, thank them and move on.
Killed folks in Stark and Marks by trolling through the dorm between classes. One or two kills per dorm is all you need, because they'll kill their roomies and neighbors very, very quickly. Killed William Dodds with a lucky grab: he was playing chess, and his gun was on the table. When I rushed him, he fell off his chair.
I'm made again around noon. The rough thing about being bold is that, sometimes, you miss a pretty high-profile kill. I've already got nine, but I want a lot more. People have started knowing who I am when I approach-I'm "the brown-haired OZ" (hahahaha). Luckily, I have class at Pomona at 1, so I change clothes and go make some more kills at lunchtime, morphing into the "black pants OZ".
The humans are really bad at this.
I'm conclusively found out around 4 pm, when e-mails go out with my name and picture. I hang out and have dinner; everyone in the dining hall knows I'm the OZ, human and zombie. I wait until dinner's over and then go hunting again. Turns out that people who don't actually KNOW me can't recognize me in the dark(especially with only a 3 year old myspace profile picture to go off of), and I get literally 8 kills from people who KNOW I AM THE OZ.
Several of them thank me for killing them, saying, "Well, at least YOU killed me."
Rough, rough shit. These guys need to get it together.
I get the phone numbers of everyone I kill and put together a mass text list, and encourage my newfound comrades to do the same with their kills. We get a Stark death squad together around 8 pm. Chris Pei (who I killed early in the morning) already has like 4 kills. Dude's a beast, and he rules the roost in Stark.
For future OZ reference:
-Seed the dorms: find out where population centers are and infect stragglers from 'em; Stark proved that even the most gung-ho dorm can fall very quickly, and getting a Day 1 death squad together is no joke.
-Be Bold: it worked for me (18 kills the FIRST DAY). There's no reason not to go for high-profile kills IF the person you're targeting DOES NOT KNOW YOU PERSONALLY. I was made 4 or 5 times before any emails went out, and it was because nobody knew exactly who I was. Plus rumors of the "black pants OZ" and "brown hair OZ" were just totally unhelpful for those dudes.
-Network, network, network: get cell numbers. Always. By yourself you ain't got much, but if you can summon 5 or 6 zombies with a text, you're gonna kick some serious ass in early game.
This day's fairly quiet. My more badass minions (Will Dodds, Chris Pei) form their own death squads and slaughter people coming out of dining halls, and the less motivated folk quietly spread their infections.
More eventful is the mission. Watching the boxes yields plenty of kills, especially the South Campus box. Adam (Pomona OZ) and I both seeded South Campus pretty hard. In particular, I killed Jonas Kwok, who promised me to kill every one of his sponsees. The only problem with South Campus is that I know nobody there, and so have trouble rustling up forces to go hunting.
Email about the night mission goes out 2 hours beforehand, but that means it goes out at 5, and the mission starts at 7. I get back from dinner at 6:15 to see that literally nobody has commented on it, and I make calls. Nobody knew about it before I called them, and nobody unconnected to my calls showed up to the night mission.
ERGO: sending out mission emails at dinnertime was a terrible, terrible plan. (love you guys! But it's true.
Anyway, I rustle up a crew to foil the human night mission and kill some NPCs. We get about 25 zombies, 10 of which are slow (overweight, out of shape, I love them but it's true). The humans split up and the horde takes chase, but the slow zombies can't chase too well, so they split up and apparently get slaughtered by Steve's squad (that creepy Gold Force outfit).
I head to Skybox or whatever it's called. The place with the lights where the stoners go, north of the coop. The humans are holding the archway. We put folks in the bushes on both sides. The NPC comes out and yells for everyone to run to the next location. Everyone promptly turns tail and runs.
This is a poor decision, because, as I mentioned above, all the slow zombies were weeded out of our group. We bellow as one and mob the retreating humans. Solomzi (such a boss; this was the night I first saw him in action) pops out of a bush and kills three humans before going down. The rest of us kill the dude with the crossword puzzle and his guardians; the other humans run away.
That was glorious.
The rest of the mission's difficult to win, but we accomplished our objective. We good.
I organize CMC and Pomona death squads and send them out. They kill the triumphant humans as they wander back to their rooms.
Future OZ reference:
-Survival of the fittest: know who your fast guys are and, basically, make them commanders, with contact info of zombie groups. It'll come in handy.
-Fear not death: get your zombies to rush rush rush and you'll get plenty of kills, especially before the humans have seen enough combat to avoid being rattled.
-War cries: they're awesome, they get your guys pumped, freak the other dudes out, and give you a great signal for a coordinated rush.
I'm busy during the day mission, but Josh (HMC OZ) takes care of it in, like, an hour.
Zombies try to use the email list to coordinate, but it's clumsy and ineffective. Text remains the only effective rallying tool.
Night mission goes out way too late (again) but this time zombies kinda know the drill, so we have a good group going.
We coordinate around Fawcett: turns out that zombies are really, really good at democracy. I apparently have some sort of implied OZ authority, and everyone is quiet while I lay out the plan and ask for suggestions; suggestions are orderly and constructive; there is literally no bickering. I hear that this is the opposite of what happened with the humans, and in the face of this I can only remind everyone that I am fucking boss.
We kill the humans guarding the base of the tower(rushing in two packs from opposite sides on a count of "1, 2, BRAAIIIIINS", but some of them aren't actually playing? Like, they just had guns and green t-shirts tied to their arms to simulate bandanas? (Moderator's Note: Prospective students) Anyway, they die. We get someone with a weird mask; whatev.
Black ops rape us because we have no idea what the fuck THEIR deal is and they keep respawning and it is just annoying as hell.
Plus, for some reason, in order to be Black Ops you have to be a douche to play with, because they keep bickering about rules and gloating when they win.
I kill three scrippsies and a pitzer student who tried to run away without looking behind them; another in a long list of bad ideas.
The zombies held the tower very poorly; turns out we're bad at sieges (not enough coordination) but, again, we split into death squads and kill. The death squads are so much more coordinated than the actual mission, and I think the zombies have a lot more fun doing them than the missions.
Future OZ reference:
-Dictatorship: the OZ has implied authority: use it, and just be in charge. The really anal annoying humans usually survive late into the week anyway, so they're not a problem, and the zombie population tends to be very chill. It really helps if the zombies have one guy telling them when and where to die in a hail of nerf bullets for the glory of the horde.
I'm being hunted (you asshole mods) (Moderator's note:
). No problem: I've finally organized a South Campus death squad, and they fuck shit up for me and around me without me having to get hurt.
The day mission is impossible (kill 1 person from every one of the 5 colleges? dude, there are no CMCers LEFT, there are 5 mudders hiding in their rooms, and the North Campus boys are all Gold Squad. Not happening), so we call it off early and go for fun rando kills.
BUT (and this is a big but) everyone's tired. it's friday, people have homework, people are sore from running all the fucking time, people don't wanna play today. So the night mission is an underpopulated disaster.
Which is allll gooooood, because the death squad thing still works (god bless freshmen).
People are dropping out though. Zombies are getting bored. I can't blame them; there are no more juicy targets, and, if you didn't get plugged into my text network, no way to get notified as to where hot spots are.
I'm out for Day 5. Solomzi takes charge, with my blessing, and I hear he wrecked shit.
This game was awesome, and a lot of fun. You guys put together a great campaign, and, all told, I think everyone had a blast. Concerns were answered immediately and effectively by the mods, and generally everything ran smoothly.
But you don't want my praises, you want my criticism. So here we go:
-Overall, I think there was a real focus on making the human experience enjoyable, and it showed!
I think there was NOT a real focus on making the ZOMBIE experience enjoyable, and, to be honest, that showed too. We need shit to do; active missions, better coordination, mod support, and (I cannot stress this enough) GETTING MISSION EMAILS in a timely fashion. If we don't hear about the mission, then we don't get all our zombies, and the humans don't get a big horde, and don't have as much fun.
-Black ops are gimped yadda yadda yadda. Basically, we need a counter to the cash shop to A) keep zombies hooked and B) level the playing field.
-HvZ hates fatties: unless you're a badass like Solomzi or Will Dodds, you don't get kills as a zombie, which makes people sad and bored and discouraged. The solution? Coordination. With central strategy and planning, slow zombies (like me; tee hee tee hee) can actually get kills and have fun and be a part of things.
-An "Overmind" character (ideally a moderator-style NPC) who can coordinate the zombies. Must be hand-picked, not randomly chosen. With the size of our games nowadays, there's no way zombies can coordinate themselves, and that means a lot of people get left out. It's a major factor in contributing to dropout rate.
-Zombie cash shop yadda yadda
-Here's my idea: give the zombies a mission for once. Just one! In mid game! A mission where the humans have to attack the overmind or something. Shift the dynamic, give the zombies something to defend for once. The OZ killing idea was promising: let's build on it. If the zombies have soft spots too, there'll be something for "zombie hunter" folk to do, and the zombies won't be as bored.
Anyway, I'd love to hear your thoughts. We should talk. And I'd like to mod, because there's no way I won't run the horde if I'm a zombie, and I don't want to take over the game and be a douche.