This is Professor Algernon (AKA Scot Violette), time traveler, neo-Victorian, and discoverer of all things that do not exist. As if that weren’t enough in and of itself, I am also the proud father in-law to one Dustin VanCour, a true nerd after my own heart.
I have been a gamer since before the word “gamer” existed, from my first Pong game (new off the shelf), to my PS3, not to mention all the nights spent in dark, candlelit rooms, rolling dice and slaying dragons as a chaotic good paladin. I have loved my gamer life and the great gamer friends I have made along the way. Now, as an aging gamer approaching 50 (*GULP*), I have found it harder to pull myself off the couch and leave Azeroth for this world. As I age I find it more and more difficult to lose the extra pounds that come with time… time and Hot Pockets. But, on a recent visit, my nerd-in-law mentioned an app for my new android phone, one that was right up my alley. This incredible program, Zombies, Run!, has actually gotten me out of the house and exercising again.
See, I am a connoisseur of the Zombie genre; I have a Zombie assistant in my magic show and also have watched nearly every Zombie movie ever made – you can check out the related blog on Facebook (search for Zombie Rated). I have also read a multitude of books on the subject; one might say the walking dead are a passion of mine. Speaking of walking, (cool segue, huh?) this app has gotten me walking for my health. What with being older, two combat destroyed knees and a few heart attacks under my belt, running might be a ways away, but walking is working well for me.
Zombies, Run! is an interactive sports game that combines role playing with a workout, making both more enjoyable. As you go out for your walk – or run, for you younger nerds – you start the app, put your headphones on and, just that quickly, you are living the apocalypse. Your helicopter crash in a Zombie occupied area starts your run for survival. As you travel down your path, you collect items and follow missions to help you live in this undead-ridden world. The farther you walk, the more stuff you can collect and the better off your encampment, Able Station, becomes. The app tracks your time and distance you walk/run, utilizing your phone’s GPS or a movement chronometer (bet you didn’t know your phone had that). It also syncs with the website so that you can print out your results and disseminate the collected items to your camp to level it up. The app will also play your favorite play lists on your phone, in between the info updates and the growling zombies on your tail.
I love this app and use it nearly every day. I don’t play the music because it distracts me from the missions of the game. I often get weird looks from people around as I walk by, sometimes speeding up to avoid a zombie bite, or ducking as the tower shoots a few zombies behind me. But that’s ok with me, I’m used to odd looks; I often wear my Steampunk gear around just to scare the “normals”, as I call them. A little of the old D&D imagination, some good running shoes and boom, your Runner #5 from Able Station, trying to restore some normalcy to a post-apocalyptic, Zombie-infested world. Not only is it fun, but it keeps you wanting to get out there for some much needed exercise. As an added bonus, you will be just that much more prepared for December 21st this year (the real beginning of the Zombie Apocalypse, maybe, possibly, hopefully… hehehe).
Best up luck, chaps!
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is Dustin, sorry, posting this a bit late. I know 12/21/12 has already passed. My bad!!!