Zombie anonymity

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What it Means

Zombie anonymity refers to the fact that you do not normally see the names (or profile links) of individual zombies present in a location. Unlike survivors, zombies are anonymous by default, and it requires special conditions to reveal their individual identity.

Instead of seeing individual characters listed, a player will see any zombies at their location simply as an anonymous mob containing (x number) of zombies. However, any contact-listed zombies present are listed individually.

Zombie anonymity affects all characters, whether they are alive or in zombie form.

Purpose & Benefits

Besides reducing server load, Zombie anonymity serves to protect zombies from being singled out as targets of attacks. Instead, most survivor attacks are directed against a zombie, which usually means the zombie in a location who has been inactive the longest. This provides horde protection for zombies, especially during live combat.

Zombie anonymity is also considered by many players to be in-genre for the zombie apocalypse theme. For the most part, the zombie canon presents the undead -- from a survivor's perspective, anyway -- as a massive faceless horde, and zombie anonymity can be seen to reflect this genre convention.

Breaking Anonymity

Zombie Anonymity is void when a character has that zombie in their contacts list; all contacts are seen as individuals, even when in zombie form. When a character has a zombie in their contacts list, that zombie is visible and can be directly attacked (or otherwise affected) even when it is in a group of zombies.

There are several ways for zombie anonymity to be broken and thus have zombie's name and profile link to be revealed. If a zombie interacts with you, or performs an action in the same location as you (e.g., they attack you, kill another character, stand up, speak or gesture in your presence), it will become visible. Using a DNA Extractor on a zombie will also reveal its profile (unless the zombie possess the Brain Rot skill, in which case your scan commonly fail and yield no useful information; you can scan a Brain Rotted zombie repeatedly, hoping to succeed in identifying it). Profile links can also be provided by someone else and then manually entered into your contacts, thus allowing you see the contact-listed zombie as an individual.

Moreover, since the August 16 2010 update, a zombie can recognize if any zombies in a block are members of his own horde, displaying the message There are two other zombies here, all of them from your horde. You recognise... if all present zombies are part of his horde, or There is a horde of 95 other zombies here, twenty-two of them from your horde. You recognise... if only a part of them belongs to the horde. This doesn't display profile links by itself, though, unless the zombies in question are also on the contacts list.

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