October 31st is drawing near – and if the undead are, inconveniently, to rise, it’s a fair bet that it’ll be at Halloween (if nothing else for blending in purposes). You don’t have much time to prepare. And preparation, in the event of zombie attack, is key. Better read this fast. Here is 2020 Archery’s five-step-guide to surviving the imminent Zombie Apocalypse.
You’re going to need a source of food and water, weaponry, a place to hide, transportation, a bunch of kooky ‘how-did-I-end-up-with-this-bunch-of-feckin’-weirdos’ bunch of weirdos to surround yourself with (these are called ‘survivors’ and you want to be one of them) and, finally, weaponry.
So, how can you maximize your chances of survival?
First of all, you need to sober up and accept the situation. Then, you can start to consider:
1. Food and Water
Start stashing food and drink away now. Find a secure place – basements tend to be popular for Apocalypse hoards, but bear in mind they’ve only got one exit, and, if you’ve seen your movies, you’ll know that ain’t good. Still, needs must and all that. Don’t stock up on Druid Street Market fare unless you want hordes of hipster zombies kicking your door down in search of civilization’s last surviving vegetarian Scotch egg.
If you haven’t pre-prepared your stash of survival food, come Apocalypse Day you’ll probably want to head for the outskirts of cities (see point 3). The main supply depots for supermarkets are going to be a better bet in terms of minimizing encounters with the marauding undead than heading for Greenwich Waitrose. Mind you, negotiating Greenwich Waitrose on a Saturday morning is probably good preparation for dealing with zombies.
Tip: Don’t burn the straw bosses for a barbecue. They smoke like bastards.
Figure 1. Bonfire of the (knackered old) straw bosses.
In order not to get eaten while stocking up on supplies (it doesn’t count as ‘looting’ once it’s survival.*) you’re going to need a weapon. You can probably guess which way we swing with this one. Silent, deadly, unlimited ammo – no, we aren’t talking about Saturday afternoon post-pub flatulence. Archery, dammit. Get your archery lessons started now, kids. You won’t regret it when the undead rabble starts snapping at your wing-mirrors. But which type of bow?
Don’t bother looting our bow stores – we will have already hidden the stash as part of our 2020 Archery instructor zombie apocalypse privilege system**. If you really can’t find an archery shop to loot you’ll need to read our later blog post on ‘How to make a longbow in the event of a zombie apocalypse’. In essence this blog post will advise you to make it quickly – somewhere out of sight. Or the more cack-handed amongst you can, instead, have a go at this simpler emergency zombie-killer, fashioned from little more than a PCV pipe. Either way, we recommend starting archery now so you already have a bow that you’re familiar with. Remember Proper Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Practice. Or something.
Book a lesson here at http://www.2020archery.co.uk/lessons-courses
Depending on what type of undead horde you’re working with, it’s usually a good plan to get out of town. If it’s the “Hell is full – now they walk the Earth” kind of zombie, you’ll definitely want to avoid old civil war battle sites and, say, Indian burial grounds (not that the Home Counties are overflowing with these, but you know what we mean – probably stay away from Hadrian’s wall). There are probably still going to be less bodies out in the sticks.
If it’s your standard Hollywood, “Oh, blast. The damned infected monkey’s escaped from the lab,” type of outbreak – well, that’s going to infect the living, and you definitely want to be out of the city.
So, once you’ve shot your way out of London (you’ll need a nice clean headshot for each zombie – seriously, get some practice in) you’re going to need to grab the wheel of a truck in order to get outta town. Choose well – you want space for your beer – I mean, water – tanks, and enough room to seat your group of quirky cannon-fodder (sorry survivors). Allow some space for bows and arrows – a couple of take down recurves, maybe a compound, and a horsebow if you want to go trad.
4. Hiding Out
Find someplace safe to hide out the apocalypse – ideally, somewhere with a good vantage point from which to shoot, should you need to defend the old palace. And – naturally – find a place with a bit of space to practice your archery. The more practice you can get, the better your chances with the undead – this is also true for archery competitions, though that’s probably not top of your priority list right now. Take your archery books along – the evenings will be long. If, by some unlikely miracle, you can still get WiFi, you can get some more archery inspiration from online folks like Infinite Curve, Grizzly Jim, and our old mates Ageing Archer and Twitchy Archer.
Don’t let training slip – we’ve all experienced the drop in form after even a two-week holiday. The more you practice, the better you’ll get. Honestly. There’s a reason why regular archery practice used to be legally enforced. (See – How to improve my archery – earlier blog post).
Implement classic battle tactics – look for high ground with a good view. If there is an undead sortie, make sure you aim for the head. Nice clean headshots should stop them in their tracks. Arse shots will just annoy them.*** Moving targets are tricky – aim slightly lower than your natural inclination, stay calm and try and judge the pace at which they’re moving. It will, obviously, be helpful if the zombies’ heads can be picked out against a backdrop of red, blue, black and white concentric circles to help you focus. Try and judge it fairly quickly, though. And – as ever – make sure you have a good release. Think smooth draw, give yourself a bit of time to aim, and get that back tension going. A few lessons pre-apocalypse can do wonders here.
Figure 2. A zombie target. Very convenient.
Once you have a pile of undead don’t forget to collect your arrows. You might want to clean them at this point.
Hone your combat archery skills (yes, we really said COMBAT ARCHERY) at one of our Archery Tag sessions: http://www.2020archery.co.uk/archery-tag
5. Repopulating the planet
Hopefully, the worst hasn’t happened and you’ve managed to siphon enough gas along the way to find yourself a fabulous mountain hide-out. You’re managing to refill your fresh water supplies, you’ve got some seeds planted, and a bit of fresh meat and fish available for bow-hunting. You’re keeping your head down in the hills (and keeping up your target practice). All this is looking pretty good and, eventually, you’re going to start seeing fewer zombies. Now is the time to start repopulating planet Earth. Choose your quirky band of cannon-fodder wisely. That’s all we’re saying on this one.
Left it to the last minute? Join one of our intensive two-day weekend archery courses: http://www.2020archery.co.uk/lessons-courses-8/weekend-beginners-course
*Well ok maybe it does but there’s probably some prohibition in London against encouraging looting that we don’t want to fall foul of. Croydon. That’s all we’re saying.
** you’d be surprised by how many of our instructors took up archery in case of zombie apocalypse. Honestly.
*** and you do not want an annoyed zombie on your case.