The following are the official rules of play for DigiPen Humans vs. Zombies Season 3.
Basic Game Rules
Humans vs. Zombies is an honor-based game, and many situations will arise during play when players will need to use their best judgement to ensure the smooth continuation of the game. Thus, the first and most important rule of DigiPen Humans vs. Zombies is simply, "Don't be a dick."
The Good Samaritan Rule
While we do not expect or hope that any players will be injured during the course of the game, we kindly request that if a player is hurt, any nearby players (Human or Zombie) assist the injured player immediately. For the duration of this assistance, any game-related activities are to be disregarded (stuns and tags do not count).
The Good Samaritan Rule is an essential rule for the continued safety of all players; abusing or exploiting this rule in any way will not be tolerated.
Playing as a Human
When playing as a Human, players are only permitted to carry Nerf-type foam dart blasters or balled up socks as weapons. When a Zombie (designated by a clearly visible headband or bandana necklace) attempts to tag a Human, the Human can 'stun' the Zombie by hitting it with a sock or foam dart. A stunned Zombie cannot tag any Humans until it has respawned.
- You will receive a unique ID the night before the start of the game. Write this ID on an index card and keep the card with you until you are either tagged by a Zombie, or the game has ended. Do not share this ID with anyone unless tagged by a Zombie.
- Keep blasters concealed while inside DigiPen until near a building exit.
- Do not shout, yell, or run while inside DigiPen.
- If you are tagged by a Zombie, you must surrender your unique ID card, and remove your armband. After a one hour Turning Phase, you are considered a Zombie.
- Any Human that is tagged by a Zombie and does not have his or her unique ID card may be removed from the game.
- If a Zombie tags your Nerf Blaster, it is not considered a tag.
- You are not able to be tagged in designated Safe Zones.
- Both feet must be inside a Safe Zone or Safe Area for a Human to be considered safe.
- When using socks as a weapon, they must be thrown using your own hand. If you are found using socks in any other form, you may be removed from the game.
- The use of any sort of shield used to protect you from being tagged is illegal.
- Battery-powered blasters may not be used until the Electric Weapons reward has been earned.
- Nerf 'Clip System' clips that hold more than 6 darts may not be used until the Extended Magazines reward has been earned.
- Nerf 'Vulcan Belts' may not be used until the Extended Magazines reward has been earned.
- Melee weapons of any kind are not allowed.
- Only approved foam dart blasters may be used.
If a Human is tagged by a Zombie, he or she enters a one-hour "Turning Phase" during which he or she may not interact with the game in any way. Once one hour has elapsed, the Human is considered a Zombie and will remain so for the rest of the week. The player may place his or her headband on once he or she is at least 20 feet away from any and all visible Humans (The "20-Foot Rule").
Playing as a Zombie
When playing as a Zombie, players must try to tag Human players without being stunned. This is a difficult task, and often requires cleverness, teamwork, and ambushes to accomplish. After tagging a Human, a Zombie collects that Human's unique ID card, and reports the kill on the official Zombie Turn-In page. If a Human hits you with a sock or foam dart at any time, you are considered 'stunned' and may not try to tag any Humans until 5 minutes has elapsed.
- You cannot tag Humans while they are in a Safe Zone.
- Do not intentionally inflict physical harm on Humans while tagging them.
- In order to officially tag a Human, you must physically touch them with an open palm, not their Nerf Blaster.
- You may not wear your headband while stunned.
- You may not act as though you are a Human in any way, including wearing your bandana as an armband, or carrying a Nerf Blaster.
- Both feet must be outside a Safe Zone or Safe Area for a tag to be considered legal.
- The use of any sort of shield to block foam darts or socks, including other zombies, is prohibited.
Human Bandana Rules
Humans are required to wear a clearly visible armband whenever outside of a safe zone. The armband must be worn and visible before exiting the safe zone.
When a Human has been tagged by a Zombie, the Human must remove his or her armband completely. The armband may not be worn again (even as a headband) until the Human has completed his or her Turning Phase. Once the Turning Phase has elapsed, and the tagged Human is at least 20 feet away from the nearest Human he or she may put his or her headband on and rejoin the game as a Zombie.
Zombie Bandana Rules
Zombies are required to wear a clearly visible headband or bandana necklace whenever outside of a safe zone. The bandana must be worn and visible before exiting the safe zone. Do not wear headbands that are either the same color as your hair, or that will be obscured by a hat, hood, or hair. If you are not able to clearly show a headband, you may wear the bandana around your neck as a necklace.
When a Zombie has been stunned by a sock or dart, the Zombie must remove the headband completely for the duration of their respawn period. Once the respawn period has elapsed, and the Zombie is at least 20 feet away from the nearest Human, he or she may put his or her headband back on and rejoin the game.
Certain locations and areas are designated "Safe Zones". Safe Zones are neutral locations where Humans and Zombies can mingle and take a break from the game. Humans cannot be tagged while inside of a Safe Zone, however both feet must be within the Safe Zone for this rule to apply. If a Zombie is hit wtih a dart or sock while standing in a Safe Zone, he or she is stunned for the normal stun duration. Both players must have both feet outside of the Safe Zone in order for a tag to be legal.
List of Safe Zones
- Inside of the DigiPen building.
- Any private property outside of the DigiPen complex. This includes but is not limited to private parking lots, apartment complexes, restaurants, and shopping centers.
- Vehicles, such as cars, buses, and bicycles.
List of Play Zones
- The DigiPen parking lot and building complex.
- Public venues, such as parks or playgrounds.
- Streets, sidewalks, and bike paths. Please be safe when playing near traffic.
There are also 10-foot area marked around all exits from the DigiPen building. These areas are considered Safe Zones, and serve to prevent extra congestion at doorways. All rules that apply to Safe Zones apply to the area marked around the doorways.
Many players use some sort of vehicle to get to school; these are considered Safe Zones until the players have exited their vehicles safely. Anyone exiting a vehicle cannot be tagged for at least five seconds after they have done so. Vehicles of any kind, including but not limited to the vehicles listed as Safe Zones, may not be used to aid any player during missions.
- Humans may not, under any circumstances, attempt to stun a Zombie from a moving vehicle.
- Zombies may not, under any circumstances, attempt to tag a Human from a moving vehicle.
- This rule is in effect from 12:00am Monday until the game is over.
- Anyone caught breaking this rule is subject to removal from the game.
In the instance that a Human and a Zombie are both convinced that they tagged the other one first, they must bring the dispute to a Moderator if they cannot resolve the dispute themselves. The Moderator will determine whether or not a duel is required.
The "20-Foot Rule"
Zombies that are stunned will often try to follow a Human for the duration of the stun. While this is permitted, Zombies may not respawn until they are at least 20 feet away from any and all visible Humans. This is also required of Humans who have completed their turning phase; in order for them to finish becoming Zombies, they must be at least 20 feet away from all visible Humans.
- Main article: Blaster Modification
Humans occasionally choose to modify their blasters externally (custom painting) and/or internally (increasing range, accuracy, etc). However, after several DigiPen Administrative complaints during Season 2, the painting of blasters has been significantly limited, and many painted blasters were banned. Any weapons with custom painting and/or other modifications must follow the guidelines listed below in order to be permitted for in-game use.
- Modded blasters must be approved by the Game Director prior to the beginning of the game.
- Painted blasters must be approved by the Game Director prior to the beginning of the game.
- Modified darts are not allowed under any circumstances.
- Socks cannot contain any objects other than another (1) Sock.