I’m now writing my ninth book on the ZA, but the truth is I often wonder if I, with all the research and thought I give to the Event, have any better chance of surviving 1st five minutes of the Zombie Apocalypse than the average Joe Public. I still don’t know the answer to this question and I guess I hope secretly that I never have to find out.
I saw an article back in the early nineties when computer games began to rise in popularity for young people. While older people were predicting doom and gloom – with eye problems and millions of new cases of RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury) some people noticed certain benefits. With the advent of more computer controlled aircraft, the similarities between flying military aircraft and computer games were narrowing. New applicants to the Airforce were becoming split into two camps, those who regularly played computer games and those that didn’t. The gamers frequently scored higher in hand-eye coordination and technology aptitude tests. Obviously this put them ahead of the others.
Move forward about 20 years and a new ‘computer game’, although it’s not actually a game, has surfaced. It’s called SurviVR. As you might expect from its name it is a virtual reality environment that simulates survival in the office. It’s not about getting one over on the boss, but an altogether frightening and unfortunately more frequent occurrence – the ‘postal’ worker.
The premise is that, if you are unprepared you will not be able to use instinctive survival skills to survive some marauding, suicidal and disgruntled office worker as he or she takes out your colleagues who have chosen to either freeze in the headlights or hide under the desk. The office is not a natural hunting environment, so what would you do under the circumstances? Most people haven’t a clue or simply do the obvious, all with fatal consequences.
SurviVR is designed to give you that instinct back, attempting to give you a safe environment in which to think about survivable options.
Why do we need this? Because most of us are so numbed and guided by process and the daily grind that we have suppressed our survival instincts more or less to zero. If we can’t defend ourselves against a lone gunman, how can we even recognise the signs that a zombie apocalypse is even happening? If a crowd of zombies ran at you, how long would it take you to 1. believe your eyes, and 2. take some form of affirmative action? Would this give you the precious seconds to formulate a plan for escape AND survival and execute it?
I am a pilot and the one thing we are taught from day one is to expect the unexpected, and in our case it’s usually in the form of your engine going silent without warning. As a result, we may look calm in the front seat enjoying the sun and the view, but trust me, in every pilot’s mind is one thought: in which field down there could I land safely. It’s a pilot’s forever thought.