The Scarlet & Black

The Independent Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Virus Spreads Across Campus

As you read this article you may want to watch your back—there are zombies about.

After secret experiments funded by SGA for the purposes of creating a synthetic SGA gavel with equal power to Thor’s hammer Mjolnir, Grinnell scientists accidentally generated a virus that causes the dead to be reanimated. Contrary to common sense, the best defense against the horde appears to be Nerf guns.

The virus was accidentally released Wednesday evening when three unidentified students put on infected headbands and were instantly killed and re-animated. The National Guard was notified, but will not be able to come and save Grinnell until Sunday because, “Finals are just around the corner and [they] have real things to do.”

HVZ organizer James Tiffany ‘15 callously explained the rules.

“Humans v. Zombies is basically a glorified game of tag,” Tiffany ’15 said. “But it has little things added to it. The zombies are the ones tagging and the humans are stunning them with darts or socks.”

HVZ was created in 2005 by students from Goucher College in Maryland. Since its inception, it has spread to over 1,000 different universities, high schools and cities across six continents. The rules that the Goucher College students outlined (which are available at are simple: everyone starts as a human except for one person who is the original zombie, if a zombie tags a human they turn into a zombie, zombies must “feed” (tag a human) every 48 hours and humans can “stun” zombies by shooting them with a Nerf gun or hitting them with a rolled up sock. The zombies win if they convert all humans, and the humans win if they survive long enough for all the zombies to “starve.”
However, Tiffany decided to make “house rules” for the Grinnell game.

“Both humans and zombies will have missions to complete,” Tiffany explained. “Humans will have missions like escorting [a human] from ARH to Rathje. An email will be sent through the website to all the humans in advance, but zombies won’t be notified until closer to the mission.”

The website Tiffany refers to is the HVZ resource site for Grinnell survivors ( which has a list of all of the participants and a live feed of the number of zombies and humans.

The Nerf guns used at Nerf at Noyce are being used to equip the 70 humans to fight off the zombies.

“This event is sort of affiliated with Nerf at Noyce,” Tiffany said. “[But] the stuff they have originally came from SGA.”

The battle that is raging on campus is taking place across campus except some academic buildings, the dining hall and dorm rooms and restrooms.

Spencer Libreto ’15 was one of the zombies’ earliest victims.

“I’m a second generation zombie” Libreto said on Thursday. “So far I’ve eaten three brains. I’ve learned that you’ve got to be on the prowl constantly or humans will figure out where you are. I was out until 1:30 a.m. last night, waiting for the libraries to close.”

HVZ will continue all weekend, with significant missions occurring today and on Saturday. The capstone of the event (assuming the humans are still alive) will be on Sunday morning, when the survivors will make their final escape from the zombies.

—additional reporting made up by Michael Schoelz

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
Donate to The Scarlet & Black
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Scarlet & Black Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *