Run, Hide or Fight?

The way to survive a zombie apocalypse is to prepare for it in advance.

You basically have three options:
Run, Hide or Fight.

The following guidelines should help you choose which one suits you.

Know Your Zombie

The Zombie Apocalypse has arrived, civilization has fallen and you must prepare to face a zombie invasion. But how exactly do you prepare for the end of the world? What kind of zombies will you even be facing? Are they running or walking? Have they risen from the grave? Or are they the product of a viral leak from a secret government research experiment? In order to maximise your chance of survival you first have to know what you are up against.

There are currently a multitude of imaginative theories about what might cause a zombie outbreak and the different types of flesh-hungry creatures which would arise out of the wreckage. For example:

In George A Romero’s Night of the Living Dead, zombies are believed to be “The result of radioactive contamination from a space probe that exploded in the Earth’s atmosphere
The zombies, or rather, Walkers in AMC’s The Walking Dead TV series, move in a very similar way to the Romero zombies but they are believed to be the result of “a virus that everyone already has, alive or dead” which can be triggered after death.
The feature film World War Z witnessed a breed of zombie, or rather, zeke that are produced as the result of a virus of unknown origin that mutates humans into zombies in 12 seconds. Not only are these zombies mutated at speed, they also move at speed and function in a completely different way to the Romero zombie.

As you can see from this small sample, we are faced with a variety of different zombies, zekes, walkers or whatever you want to call them. These include brain-hungry hordes, the living undead, viral rampaging mobs, biting creatures, radio-active zombies, and even “those created through divine intervention“! (zombie.wikia.com article on Romero Zombies)

Which kind of zombies are invading?

If you start the apocalypse with a defence strategy for surviving each kind of zombie, you will significantly maximise your chances of emerging from the apocalypse with a steady heartbeat and no increased compulsion to bite people!

To help make some sense out of this living dead dilemma, here is our guide to the many different faces that could appear during a zombie apocalypse.

To simplify things and improve your chances of survival we have categorized zombies into three main groups:


In each zombie category we will show:

  1. How to identify your zombie
  2. How to eliminate your zombie
  3. The best survival strategy for surviving the apocalypse

Haitian Zombies

The original zombies from Haitian folklore were assumed to be dead, but were actually living victims enslaved by a bokor and controlled with drugs. The victim would remain as a zombie until either death or his master chose to release him.


Identify Haitian Zombies

Haitian Zombies have a distinctive appearance. Their flesh is greyish and the skin is pulled tightly over the bones giving a gaunt look. A Haitian zombie moves slowly, haphazardly with seemingly little co-ordination skills.

An Haitian Zombie can hear and obey commands but has neither the inclination nor the presence of mind to think for themselves. Capable of heightened human strength and incapable of pain or weariness, the Haitian zombie excels at repetitive labor.

If you see a ‘mindless automaton’ with pale skin and poor co-ordination bumbling past you, it could be a zombie.

White Zombie is the movie credited with being the first to feature zombies. It was made in 1932 starring screen legend Bela Lugosi. Click the link to watch the full length feature here on Zombie Pit.

What Threat is an Haitian Zombie?

A Haitian Zombie is controlled by his master. His prime directive is to carry out his master’s bidding. As a result, the Haitian zombie poses little threat to others unless his master so chooses. On Haiti, the fear associated with zombies is less about the threat a zombie poses and more fear of being transformed into a zombie.

For lots more information about Haitian zombies check out Are Zombies Real?

How to Eliminate an Haitian zombie

Haitian zombies are not dead. They are slow moving, and only harmful if you have upset their master or you get in their way. Fortunately, it is fairly easy to deal with this type of zombie. In his book entitled Salt, Mark Kurlansky, explains that feeding salt to a zombie will cure them of zombification.

Alternatively, you could just isolate the zombie until the drugs wear off. Some black coffee and a lie in and they’ll be ready for work on Monday.

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Given our three options, your best survival technique here would be to hide. If the Bokor can’t find you, he can’t zombify you.


The concept of a iving dead, re-animated corpse leapt from the imagination of George A Romero and clawed its way onto our screens in 1968 in the first of his “dead” movies entitled Night of the Living Dead. You can watch the whole movie, in color HERE

More ‘Dead’ movies followed including: Dawn of the Dead, Day of the Dead, Land of the Dead, Diary of the Dead and Survival of the Dead.

“Romero adopted the Haitian zombie and combined it with notions of cannibalism, as well as the viral communicability characterised by the vampire and werewolf myths and so created the modern zombie”
~ Simon Pegg (Shaun of the Dead)

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Identify Hollywood Zombie

Mention the world ‘zombie’ to most people and they picture the ‘Hollywood Zombies’ created by George A Romero in his ‘DEAD’ movies.

A Hollywood Zombie is the re-animated corpse of a human who has been bitten by an existing zombie. Their skin is white, sometimes green, their eyes are lifeless and they usually have signs of the fatal wound that killed them. You might see other bite marks, torn flesh and they will be in various states of decomposition. Hollywood zombies are not pretty.

Much like the Haitian Zombie, Hollywood Zombies seem unable to recognise family or friends and are incapable of verbal communication.

In addition, Hollywood Zombies exhibit ferral cannibalistic tendencies which drive them to feed on the flesh of humans. Their prime directive is to find humans and eat them.

If you see a blank eyed, decomposing, blood-stained human staggering towards you with arms outstretched and their teeth bared, it’s a Hollywood Zombie.

What Threat is a Hollywood Zombie?

The most imminent threat posed by a Hollywood Zombie is their unrelenting drive to bite and consume humans. It is through their zombie bite that Hollywood Zombies turn other humans into zombies, in much the same way that the mythical werewolves and vampires would pass on their ‘characteristics’.

They bite

Hence, if a zombie bites you, you will shortly die and then imminently become a zombie. Unless, that is, they eat your brains; no coming back if you don’t have a brain.

The Bright Side

Hollywood zombies are not alive, have no circulatory system and therefore are incapable of moving quickly. They cannot climb, cannot run and certainly don’t have the energy to boogie with the king of pop.

Furthermore, Hollywood zombies are, first and foremost, dead. As such, they are constantly decomposing. Eventually they will degenerate to such an extent they cannot move. We witness this in The Walking Dead where the walkers deteriorate with each passing series.

How to Eliminate Hollywood Zombies

The only way to eliminate a Hollywood Zombie is to destroy the brain or remove the head. An isolated zombie would be a poor match for anyone strong enough to wield a bat, a shovel, a golf club or in posession of a gun.

Click Image to view Shaun and Ed eliminating zombies.

Don’t say the ‘Z’ word

For more Shaun and Ed, visit Shaun of the Dead the Movie or check out our Shaun of the Dead Section.

How to Hide from Hollywood Zombies

It is imperative that Hollywood Zombies are not given the opportunity to bite and infect more victims. During a zombie apocalypse, self isolation is a practical measure to take in order to stop the spread of zombies and keep the healthy safe. Here are some great ideas how you can avoid becoming a zombie by hiding.

Stay Home

During a Zombie Apocalypse, your own house is the most comfortable place to take refuge. That is, with a little preparation. Zombies cannot climb and their ‘breaking and entering’ skills are limited. Board up the windows, barricade the door and get yourself somewhere high up.

Zombie can’t climb

If you have an attic, now is the time to kit it out with emergency supplies. Once safely ensconced in your hideout, listen daily to the radio for the all clear. You may have to last several days or more so some form of entertainment would be good; but not zombie movies.

Stay in someone else’s home

If the Zombie Apocalypse catches you unawares and you can’t get back home, then the nearest clean and dry shelter may have to do. In the Zombieland Movie, our intrepid bunch of survivors took refuge in an abandoned Beverley Hills Mansion. It was an idea that had been working well for Bill Murray, until Columbus discovered it.

Choose Wisely

When selecting a suitable abandoned building, choose wisely. A hospital is sure to have zombies. Schools have too many windows. And whatever you do, don’t go to a shopping mall. It won’t end well.

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The Colder the Better

Zombies have no pulse and no circulatory system. Hence, as the temperature drops their ability to move decreases. As a result, your best bet is to head north to colder climes.

Taken to its logical conclusion, zombies would hardly be able to move in freezing temperatures; though, there may be exceptions.

Click Image to view Dead Snow Clip

This is an awesome movie. Check out Dead Snow for more.

Build a Bunker

Of course, the ultimate survival refuge has to be your own Zombie Apocalypse Bunker. Whether you want to have one professionally installed or purchase one already built, you would be amazed at the range and quality of the survival bunkers that are available. For a cool $3M you could spend the zombie apocalypse in something quite comfortable.

Click Image to view inside a Luxury Doomsday Bunker


The best way to survive an outbreak of Hollywood Zombies is to hide but be ready to fight if you are attacked. Barricade yourself in somewhere safe and wait for the military to annouce the all clear. Find somewhere you cannot be seen, cannot be heard and pack it full of supplies.

Make sure you have a stash of weapons just in case you have to defend yourself. Guns are great but need reloading and an endless supply of ammunition. On the other hand, a cricket bat, baseball bat or a golf club are easy to find, light to carry, require no projectiles and are extremely effective against Hollywood Zombies. Your first zombie kill can be traumatic. A cup of hot sweet tea or a Cornetto works wonders.

Viral Zombies

Movies such as World War Z and The Girl With All the Gifts have taken the traditional concept of the Hollywood Zombie and rebranded it to provide a new, smarter, faster monster for us to fear: the viral infected zombie.

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Identifying Viral Zombies

Viral Zombies exhibit many of the tendencies of Hollywood Zombies such as cannibalistic urges and a constant desire to bite humans.

As most viral zombies have been ‘turned’ through being bitten, they will exhibit evidence of this attack such as bite marks and torn flesh.

In contrast to the Hollywood Zombie, the viral zombie is fast on their feet. Their behaviour is frenzied, aggresive and ferral. Viral zombies seem unable to communicate verbally however they are able to co-operate with other zombies to achieve their common goal.

If you see a bleeding, ferral, crazed human hurtling towards you with their teeth bared and growling, that’s a viral zombie.

What Threat is a Viral Zombie?

Viral Zombies pose an immediate threat to humans because of their unrelenting urge to bite humans. This threat is compounded by their ability to move quickly.

Bite and Move On

The viral zombies in the movies World War Z and The Girl with all the Gifts, bite their victims and then move quickly on to the next victim. They are not driven by the personal need to feed on flesh but to slavishly do the bidding of the virus by infecting as many victims as possible, as quickly as possible.

Fast Transformation

In both movies, the humans become infected and turn into zombies very quickly. In World War Z the viral zombies have it down to 12 seconds. With no time elapse, this makes them a huge threat to humans, particularly as their outward appearance seems human until they attack.

They run

Viral zombies can run. As they tend to have a real sense of urgency and they travel in packs, this takes on the form of a rampaging mob.

They climb

The instinct to feed is very strong with the viral zombie and if they need to get over a 50ft wall they will. Even if that means hurtling themselves from the top and landing face first on the ground below, they will do it.

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Rapid Spread

As a result, a zombie horde will increase exponentially, scattering in all directions to find new victims, much like an explosion. For the human, it is difficult to assess if they are running away from danger or towards it.

Look Human

In the short term after being bitten, these viral zombies have a circulatory system, a thought process, they produce energy and can move like a human. Their strength is in numbers, speed and the element of surprise.

The bright side

If Viral Zombies cannot detect human prey nearby, they slow down or stand still. Ultimately, if denied food, they will deteriorate and expire.

How to Eliminate Viral Zombies

Viral Zombies are no stronger than humans and can be killed by conventional weapons. Wounding Viral Zombies will slow them down, a fatal blow will terminate them. In the short term, viral zombies maintain their human characteristics and bodily functions, such as breathing. Therefore, at this point, they would be susceptible to poisoning by gas or oxygen deprivation.

How to hide from viral zombies

Viral Zombies are relentless in their quest to hunt and feed and they move with speed. On a one to one basis you might stand a chance but against a pack of fast moving viral zombies, heavy artillery from a safe distance is the best solution.

Here are some ideas how you can avoid becoming infected by a viral zombie.

Military Base

The safest place in an apocalypse of viral infected zombies is behind someone with a bigger weapon than the one you have. Turn your best mode of transport into an armor plated fortress and get thee to a military base, fast!

‘Arm toe truck’ from Dawn of the Dead (2004)

Home Sweet Bunker

When you are up against a swarm of fast-moving viral zombies, barricading yourself at home and hoping they won’t find you is not the best option. An underground bunker would work, preferebly somewehere remote and well disguised. Staying in a city is not a good idea.

Keep on the move

In World War Z, Gerry Lane (Brad Pitt) says “movement is survival”. The best way to keep on the move is on a seafaring vessel. The bigger the better. Arm it to the teeth, stash it with supplies and learn to fish!

Island Gettaway

Your best chance for surival is isolation on your own deserted island. Even though viral zombies are smarter than your average undead, they are unlikely to be organised enough to charter a plane or a boat and come looking for you. There are lots of islands up for sale right now for less money than you would think. This is often because they are haunted or semi-submerged half the year, so choose wisely.



In terms of our three options, the best way to survive an outbreak of fast-moving viral zombies is a combination of all three. Run and hide in the nearest stronghold that you can find. A military base, a remote island, up a mountain, out to sea, find somewhere where you can put up a defence and see them coming.

Prepare long range defence tactics incase they find you and you need to stand and fight. The weapons of choice would be missiles and projectiles or any rapid fire hand weapons that you can shoot accurately from a distance. Think bazooka rather than baseball bat.

You could also prepare some defence traps in advance at a distance from where you are holed up. Landminds, trip-wires, any kind of boobtrap that slows them down and gives you warning is ideal. If you entrap these zombies for long enough, they would expire through lack of nourishment. Dare we suggest constructing a large, deep, camouflaged zombie pit?


The only way to survive a zombie apocalypse is to prepare in advance. Assuredly, no-one wants to contemplate the prospect of a zombie apocalypse, but secretly many would relish the challenge!

So if you’ve always wondered how you’d fare during the End of Days, why not sign yourself up for a Zombie Boot Camp Experience Day?

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Find out more about Zombie Bootcamp Experience

At the very least, these action packed excursions will impart some practical combat skills which will offer you a head start against the inevitable – Zombies!!!

Written by ZombiePit

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