Editor's Note: This is based on Blackmore 4(04), an historical event that took place during August, 2010. For more information, read here for the original version or continue below for the correct version.
Blackmore 4(04) was a failed, grass-roots initiative to develop a renewable, free-ranging, human herd in Ridleybank, and to show the rest of Malton that small-scale, sustainable local harvesting could overcome the city’s rapidly-dwindling human food supply. The ill-fated project took place from August 19, 2010 to August 31, 2010, almost four years to the day after the first, failed attempt to bring affordable, fresh-food to downtown’s starving zombie population.
Initial seeding of the Ridleybank area began on August 19th, with the introduction of several breeds of human into carefully selected release points around Ridleybank. Researchers initially hoped that a sustainable, robust human herd would finally be able to graze in the desolate downtown wasteland. The project ultimately failed thirteen days later on August 31, when zombies from the Ridleybank Resistance Front, The Feral Undead, and the Minions of the Apocalypse gave up on all that hippy, tree-hugging, renewable crap, and killed every man, woman and child in the Greater Ridleybank metropolitan area.
The rest of this story is continued here.
Behind the Killing Floor: the Big Bash III
It happens every Spring in Malton. The snow finally starts melting. The days start getting longer. Birds can be heard chirping. And thousands of zombies began to wander the city, looking to slaughter every man, woman and child foolish enough to remain in our lovely zombie city.
Yes, it must be Big Bash season, and the love of harman genocide is still in the air. This past week, the Malton Herald and Sun were lucky enough to sit down with Bash organizers Bisfan, Aichon, Amber and Skoll and find out exactly what goes on behind the scenes of everyone's favorite event.
MHS:This is third time a Bash has been organized in Malton. What has made this Bash different from years past?
Aichon: I was here! Since I only joined the game about a year ago, I missed out on a lot of the big events of Malton's history.
Being asked to help out with Big Bash 3 was a real treat for me, since I knew this was a chance for me to be involved in something
big that others would be reading about for years to come.
Besides me being around (which isn't actually that important), I think one big difference with this Bash was that we had zombie
interference working for us. Older Bashers will remember Giddings Mall and the frustrating month-long siege of it in Big Bash II,
but thanks to the introduction of interference, we were able to keep Big Bash 3 almost entirely feral while making steady progress,
which was a first.
Bisfan: Aside from the "3" at the end of the Bash? ;)
More seriously, a lot of effort went into making this Bash capture the spirit of both previous Bashes. It has attempted to bring together players, in the spirit of fun, and encouraged them to embrace a play-style akin to a zombie wrecking ball. This Bash hasn't been about "being different", it's been about encouraging fun. Malton is suffused with drama, and the intent here has been to try and put drama aside, and just do what zombies do best; eat stuff and mess places up.
Amber: I've only seen the last two bashes but I've noticed a couple differences. There was more of a sense of community. There was a wider variety of old and new zombies from other hordes wanting to get involved on some level. And there were more brains during BBII. I might be showing my age, but I find myself longing for epic sieges such as the Battle for Pitneybank, just so I can point to it and tell babahz "You see? This is why we're still shambling." Bizzles will probably recoil at it's mention, but that moment - The birth of the beachhead - there hasn't been anything like it since and there probably won't be for a while. And don't get me wrong. I remember throwing all my energy at barricades and barely taking them down to very heavy. Or getting headshot two or three times daily when bigger zombies opened the doors for me. And getting combat revived before I could finish a meal and popping inside to listen to the frantic screams, barked orders and pleas for help on the radio. Or getting zerg rushed - clawed down and set up a headshot while Bub swayed in the corner of Byrne Auto Repair. I remember it all quite vividly. But all of that is what made the pink, fleshy center of the mall and the Morrish Building so much more sweet.
Skoll: While this is my first time participating in a Big Bash, I would have to say what made things different from the previous two were fundamental changes in tactics such as cade blocking and the new bellow which draws zombies from a 21x21 radius. Clears buildings quick. I can also say that whole suburbs fell within a day or two during this bash, which is something that didn't happen with the previous two.
MHS: Now I know its hard for some of your brainrotted zombies to remember, but what has been your favorite memory so far with the Big Bash III?
Aichon:Probably when the buzz about BB3 was first building was a high point for me. For me, as word started to leak that the Bash was coming, it was a lot of fun to see people getting really excited at just the prospect of another Bash. And when we finally posted a countdown to the big announcement on the wiki page, it seemed to me like the wiki and IRC just exploded with activity. Seeing that the wiki page had been visited something like 3000+ times in the week that we just had the countdown posted was pretty amazing to me. That's probably when it first sunk in for me that I was part of something big.
As for during the event, it's hard to pick just one. Arriving in Pitneybank and trashing the entire place, including the fort and the mall, in about a day and without any real organization was a major demonstration of what the Big Bash could do. And, before that, when we were first starting out and were moving so fast through the city that we were getting complaints from people trying to join up that we had moved 8-10 suburbs in the time it took them to get to where we had been just a few days earlier...that's always a nice affirmation. We also sprayed a lot of graffiti around the city in the month or so before the event started, and it was always great when we'd break into a building and see one of our messages such as "Big Bash 3 Entry Point" or "Spread the undead - Join BB3!" inside.
Bisfan: The thing I appreciate most about this Bash has been the number of zambahz who have stepped up to contribute to it. Whether it be working in a strike team, acting as ambassadors to the myriad established zambah gangz in town, administratively behind the scenes, scouting...so many of the zambahz involved have been keen to help that it has made it a pleasure to be involved.
For a specific moment...I would have to say it was a rare zambah visit to Miltown, and breaching the Fliney Necrotech Building there. There was nothing epic about it, it was just a routine break-in, like you'd see on any other day in Malton, but in another life I have worked very hard to keep Miltown safe, and Fliney NT in particular so it was a rare and personal pleasure to be there on the side this time :D
Amber:Probably when when an ex-escapist told me that the bash had changed his perspective significantly. It reminded me a lot of how BBII changed my views.
Skoll:My favorite memory? Theres so many, the entire event was so much fun, but I'll try to pick just one... I'd have to say my favorite memories are the collective breaching and beachheading of malls that H.A.R.M. accomplished as the Bash's only organized strike team. Except for Treweeke and Caiger, we were the ones that led the charge on every mall in Malton when the Bash came knocking.
For the rest of the interview, go straight to jail, do not collect $200, and read here.
Lack of Brain-rot: Is he really into you, or ... is he just testing the zombie waters? What the saavy, single zombie needs to know about today's zombie dating scene
It's Saturday Night...and you check your watch. It is almost seven o'clock. He will be here in less than ten minutes. You hurry to finish dressing, trying on several outfits before finally deciding on a torn, blood-matted gray dress that matches your eyes perfectly. A quick dash of dried blood to your lips and then a subtle trace of a pencil liner to accentuate that long scar running down your left cheek. You turn around in the mirror and smile, noticing the decayed flesh hanging from your right leg. Normally, you would not care about your appearance. But tonight was different.
Tonight, you are meeting him.
You grab your overcoat and head out into the dark night, pausing briefly to savor the stench of decay surrounding the ruined core of downtown Malton. You hear a loud growl echoing into the night, and your heart begins to beat just that much faster. It was him. And he had a reservation at the city's hottest new restaurant: Club Penfold. Where you first met.
As you crawl through the broken barricades, you think back to that first night. You, a fresh corpse, rummaging through the remains of the ransacked statehouse, and him, an infected firefighter, coughing up blood in the corner. You remember him trying to crawl away from you as you shamble toward him. You always did like when they played hard to get. As your teeth began to tear through his carotid, you remember him screaming in pain and horror, and you feel a warm glow inside you.
Yes, you reflect, he always did know exactly what to say to melt a girl's heart. This one was definitely a keeper.
You smile as the memory leaves your rotten mind, and you begin to look inside the club for your flame. You catch a scent of a dying policeman in the corner, mixed in with the smell of fear and blood as the harmanz slowly realize that they are not alone. A new scent appears and your heart begins to beat faster. He was there.
But something is different. Something is wrong. He is different. He is wrong.
A dark figure approaches you, two flashes appear in the darkness, and as your broken body crumbles to the floor, you think to yourself, “How could I be so stupid? How could I not see this coming?” He finishes you off with a quick headshot, dumps your body in the street, and walks out the door, leaving you to pick up the pieces of your broken heart and skull.
Let's face it. We have been there before, thinking that we have found the zombie of our dreams, only to discover that our new love is nothing more than a harman in disguise. So how do you know your new man or woman is committed to being a life-long zombie? Here are some hints that your new flame may not exactly be the one for you:
- They introduce themselves as Zomkiller23, ZedDead5, SlayDeathToonB, or PenultimateZomboApocalypse.
- Their idea of a fun night is to stand around a park, bleating “Mrh?” while swaying back and forth.
- While you are certainly open to spicing things up in the bedroom, you do wonder if bringing twenty loaded shotguns, a portable generator and thirty fire-axes to bed is really necessary.
- Lately you seem to be running out of conversation topics, and his story about being a “lost soul, drifting endlessly in a sea of melancholy and despair toward a chasm of hopelessness and sorrow, who now must avenge the death of his parents by killing every zombie in Malton” is no longer the funny anecdote it used to be.
- He avoids your subtle questions about commitment, why he does not have brainrot and why he has been spending most of his time hanging out at the Thompson Walk Revive Point.
- You have started to wonder if you really want to spend the rest of your unlife with a man whose long-term plan is to cleanse the zombie menace from the suburbs of Stanley Village and Roftwood using the holy, purging fire of long-range howitzers and fuel-air bombs.
Remember, only diamonds and brainrot are forever. Otherwise, last month's unrotted fling might suddenly become tomorrow's light morning snack.
Wanda...Baby...our little girl is gone...
My loving wife. It is like a horrible nightmare. Every day and every night I still see our daughter’s face. You do remember, don’t you my dear? It seems like just yesterday that we were watching our little Becky play on the swingset. I still remember glancing over at you, watching you smile and laugh as Becky climbed down the swingset to pick up her favorite stuffed polar bear. Our sweet, little girl. It would break your heart to see her last Tuesday. Screaming and crying as I dragged her toward the front door of Blackmore to trade her for a single generator. A single generator. No parent should ever have to receive so little in trade.
I never thought this day would come. I still remember the day you told me you were pregnant. I remember your face as we talked about Becky’s future, our future. We walked through her life together. Her first birthday. Her first words. Her first day at school. Her first kiss. The crates of DNA extractors and crowbars we would get after shipping her off to New Arkham on her tenth birthday. But those dreams are gone now, my love. Instead, I am left here with nothing to remember her, except this generator. One lousy generator that will be probably be destroyed within the hour. These truly are dark times we live in.
No father should have to go through what I just went through, Wanda. The pain. The complete humiliation of settling for less than ten shotguns and two generators for their eleven-year old. I still remember the other 303er’s laughing at me when I returned to Blackmore, receiving so little for someone, who, at one time, held so much promise.
I should have done more when we were raising her. I should have seen this coming. Why did I not see the warning signs? If I was a better father, I would have crated her and left her in Wyke Hills until the market got better. God knows my father would have done the same for me. But now she is gone, Wanda, destined to spend the rest of her life in shackles in a Ridleybank Harmanz Processing camp. It was her time to go I guess. She knew it, I knew it, and the zombies knew it. I just wished we got have gotten more for her.
Wanda, you shouldn't have to suffer for my mistakes. I know we haven’t talked much since I left your mother to die at Nichols. I am sorry baby, I really am. You and I both know that traveling with less than 40 FAKs is tantamount to suicide. We couldn’t spare even one. I really am I sorry. I was hoping to get a flak jacket for that old hag.
But you have to forgive me and we need to move on. I need you Wanda. I need you to help me get through the pain and the suffering. Please, come back to me baby. If not for me, then do it in loving memory of our daughter. And, Wanda, when you come, be sure to bring our son Jake, and his friends Ernie and Jackie. I am still hoping to get that tenth fire axe.
Meet a Ridley: Bobby the Hatchet
As a part of new feature in the MH&S, we will be interrupting the murder sprees of everyday RRF members to interview them, so that you, the good people of Malton, can learn a bit more about the people slaughtering you in your sleep. This past week, we had the pleasure of sitting down with Bobby the Hatchet, dedicated Ridley and Gore Corps devivification expert.
MHS: So how did you come to join the Ridleybank Resistance Front? Did you know members in the RRF before? Or did you just get really drunk one night, and five states and two weddings later, you had somehow managed in your drunken stupor to sign up on Barhah.com?
BH: As a fairly new player, after witnessing the raw power of a somewhat coordinated strike involving the Ridleybank Resistance Front and ferals, I laid dead in the street thinking to myself, “I want that.” I decided to join almost instantly. I was amazed to find such a coordinated effort tucked away beneath the clawing and growling of the streets. Serving Ridleybank seemed to be an obligatory part of the Urban Dead experience, and I’ve never looked back. I started out as a bahbah eating with Team America and my axe-murdering ways ultimately led me to the Gore Corps. The heavy drinking and vulgar displays of bad judgment actually came after I was locked in.
MHS: Some of our readers have learned the hard way that combat reviving a Gore Corps member is one of the quickest ways to meet some of the more interesting members of the gun family. Have you meet any interesting harmanz who have revived you...and then thanked them with the loving gesture of a shotgun double tap?
BH: All the time. I generally try to target all who revive or heal me, in keeping with tradition. Combat Revives on Death Cultists are especially pleasant, because it allows us to demonstrate our true nature, almost immediately. Nothing makes me giggle like being Combat Revived during a live attack and then returning under a hail of gunfire to put an axe in their guts. When we dishonour the needle, we dishonour life, and it shows survivors that their own ignorance can be just as dangerous to them as our claws.
MHS:What do you enjoy the most about Urban Dead? I mean, besides slaughtering harmanz?
BH: The meta-gaming community, especially within Barhah, has been great. I find that this bizarre little game-that-should-not-be attracts all sorts of people from various walks of life, united towards a common goal, with plenty of hilarity in between. When one gets involved in the human element here, it totally enhances the game. It’s really the only way to play. Also, the low-impact time constraint prevents me from being ridiculed as a nerd by my peers.
MHS: What do you enjoy the most about being in the RRF and in the Gore Corps? What is your role in the Gore Corps?
BH: I enjoy being in the Ridleybank Resistance Front because it is a significant part of Malton’s history. Ridleybank is the heart of the city, and its roots run pretty deep. It’s a massive group full of veteran players and it brings in a constant influx of new faces. The group takes responsibility for legit play and there’s seldom any groundbreaking drama, which is great considering how widespread everyone is. As a member of the Gore Corps, I get to experience Death Culting at its finest, prowling the ruins as our brothers and sisters close in around us. There is nothing greater than logging on and finding myself on the street, eaten and Death-Rattled at by a fellow Ridley. We must know our place and respect the horde, and it is an honor that we have been able to serve as long as we have. Regarding my role in the Gore Corps, I must remain vague, as we are a bit secretive with our sadism. I will admit that I am nothing more than a mild-mannered henchman taken under their tattered wing.
MHS: Now, some heretics-- we will call them “Mrh cows” – claim that being a survivor takes more than knowing a simple set of skills. Surviving--they say--takes hard work, a dedication to watching a barricade level drop slowly from EHB to VHB, and a commitment to acting selflessly, and not hoarding all thirty of your FAK kits. So...when you are revived...is it really as painful as I have been told to see the world as a survivor sees it?
BH: Survival sheerly for the sake of survival, takes almost no work at all. It is a futile endeavour that we have all instinctively faced at one time or another. Any “Mrh Cow” can hole himself away in an early grave of boards and light. The true labor comes with learning how to break free of those confines and truly live, walking the earth unafraid. When I am revived, it does indeed pain me to see survivors locked inside, quarrelling over sticks and stones. These days are a cause for celebration, yet they fail to embrace it, sharing their misery with the rest of us. Fortunately, when I am saddened I tend to cry double-ought tears of lead, so my revival is really more painful for them than it is for me.
MHS: What has been your most memorable moment in UD so far?
BH: I believe the most memorable moment so far was being involved in Excursion IV. I was just coming back from hiatus, linked up with the Gore Corps, and it was the first time in Urban Dead that I was able to really witness the full power of the Ridleybank Resistance Front on such a massive scale. Our strike teams were always dangerously close and when Death Culting I often found myself barely making it out of buildings alive as we scorched a path of death and destruction across Malton.
MHS: Some say that the harman is the most dangerous game, skillful at evading a pursuit, and lethal when cornered. What do you think? Any memorable battles / encounters with the most dangerous game / easiest meal?
BH: I believe the most dangerous game is the harman that we seldom see; those who stray from the beaten path, nomads lurking in ruin, rebuilding the framework of humanity. These select few have evolved with the times, they will be the last of the dying breed, and when it comes time to confront them in the final battle, perhaps centuries from now, there is no telling what they will be capable of.
MHS: Now for something more serious...is it true what they say about Lord Moloch?
BH: Yes. He is a fine leader and a gentleman and after serving in two groups under the man I would certainly be severely uncomfortable allowing my children near him.
MHS: For my final question, let's pretend that you are the last living member of the Gore Corps in a world taken over by zombies. You come across a small child, and she starts smiling at you. So...shotgun, pistol, knife or claw?
BH: I would do the honorable thing, axe down the cades, jump to my death and feeding drag her into the street. Victory would be shared; the last drop of survivor blood belongs to the horde.
MHS: Well, we would like to thank Bobby for taking the time to answer some of our questions, and we'll leave our dears readers in Malton with this loving thought: It's 10PM, the kids are tucked in, and the power just went out...are you sure your door is locked?