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Behind the scenes of ‘Humans vs. Zombies’

With no trace of zombies left, students of the College can finally breathe again and continue their academic endeavors.

TCNJ Manhunt hosted “Humans vs. Zombies” from Monday, Feb. 24, at 12 a.m. to Friday, Feb. 28, at 8:30 p.m. Played once or twice a semester, the game starts with one zombie whose objective is to tag as many humans as possible so they turn  into zombies. The last human standing wins the game.

“The game has been around for about four years,” president of TCNJ Manhunt and junior history and secondary education dual major Jonathan Vanderhoof said.

The humans don’t have to just avoid the zombies, though, in order to survive. They can also temporarily stun the zombies, using Nerf swords, Nerf guns or sock balls. Players who are zombies are forbidden from playing the game for 15 minutes after they have been stunned. Players can only tag each other inside the College’s residence halls and anywhere outside, but only on campus.

According to Vanderhoof, the latest game of “Humans vs. Zombies” was a huge success.

“I know I had a blast playing it this time around,” he said. “Those that played had an amazing time, and we had no major issues with the campus community that we have to adapt to.”

This game in particular was played a little differently than past games. It started off with a few veteran players who volunteered to be zombies, thus making it a little more difficult for the humans to avoid them. Nonetheless, the humans gave it their all and eight of them advanced to the finale after working together.

“Both the humans and the zombies were really enthusiastic and creative this past game,” Vanderhoof said.

Sophomore communication studies major Jared Sokoloff managed to stay in the game until the finale, which was his favorite part. The finale took place in the woods behind Lake Ceva, which was covered in ice and branches. Nothing but darkness filled the sky.

“I love challenges like that,” Sokoloff said. “None of the humans thought they’d survive that part, but a few others and I made it through. The game was a lot of fun.”

This is not the only fun that TCNJ Manhunt has, though. The club also meets every Friday night and some Wednesday afternoons to play various outdoor games, including “Capture the Flag” and “Manhunt.” According to Vanderhoof, TCNJ Manhunt assembles “a unique group of students.”

“What makes this club from year to year great are the people that come out and play,” he said. “We do have a large consistent group that comes every week to play.”

Vanderhoof expects the club to grow exponentially, and he hopes to someday make connections with other colleges and universities that play “Manhunt.” For now, though, his eyes are set on “Humans vs. Zombies” and the spring weather that is to come.

“We will be having a second game once it gets warmer,” he said.


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