Thursday 22 November 2012

Alternative Undead 2: Zombies

Zombies have undergone a renaissance in the past few years, shambling in to the consciousness of more people than ever thanks to the success of Left 4 Dead, The Walking Dead, Shaun of the Dead and Dead Dead of the Dead Dead Dead (one of these may be made up).

I'm a big fan of the zombie genre, but not of zombies in fantasy, they are an inherently modern/scifi monster as far as I'm concerned. Skeletons will always be my go to for mindless corpses (thanks to Ray).

So what to do to keep the general feel of zombies but move away from rotting brain eaters?

Sleeper Zombie

(Ok, the name is awful, bare with me)

Zombieism is the result of a powerful curse. It manifests as the victim goes to sleep, where they rise with an insatiable craving for flesh. They inevitably turn on those closest to them first as husbands turn on their wives and children on their parents, tearing them apart with an unnatural strength, their blank eyes not seeing and unable to feel pain.

When the victim wakes, surrounded by the remains of those they've killed and with full bellies, they return to their normal selves and slowly become aware of their actions during the night as if remembering a horrific nightmare.

Stat wise I would probably treat them the same as zombies. The idea is close enough that you could use hordes of them as a whole town is cursed. It also preserves that classic moment as someone has to kill a loved one who has turned, with the added horror that they will return to normal in a short amount of time.

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