Zombie Rework


As it stands, Zombies have the following benefits:

  • Tough: 25%(!!!) brute modifier, which means when you shoot/melee it, it takes 25% of the damage. Coupled with minor fire resistance and self-revive after 1 minute, makes them really hard to take care of.

  • Strength: 40 brute damage per swing, with super-slow, and most importantly, infection. A single swing will take a marine out either from the slowness leading to additional hits, or the infection slowly converting them to another zombie

  • Numerous: Infection spreads fast, coupled with above points, defending against them is usually a fool’s errand, and doesnt work out well.

Overall I want zombies to be the following: Faster than currently are, but weaker in strength and less durable. As such. I currently did the following;

  1. Slowdown reduced, double speed they are currently
  2. Significant increase in damage taken from brute
  3. Superslow removed completly, All entities hit will simply be slowed
  4. Damage nerf to claws (30 dmg instead of 40)

Overall I am open for adjustments before I open PR for review. I think many agree that zombies need a rework, and I currently wish for them to be a faster horde, but one that is still almost a death sentence even with one stratch, not due to the damage, but due to the infection.


I think one of the current biggest issues with zombies is moreso uncertainty than straight combat statistics.

Players have been defending against Xenomorphs - speedy, melee-orientated threats - for years. We know what kills Xenos, and how they make more of them.

As such, I think taking some notes from our alien friends would be a good call:

Dedicated Infections:
Marines can be hugged on the frontline, and recovered and treated without too much hastle, as there are a few ways to slow larva grown and frontline hugs are usually up to chance: A lucky hugger, a well-placed egg, or a ballsy Carrier. All of these threats can be shot at or burned, however.

If a hive wants a safe, speedy burst: they need to take-down a marines and get them back to the hive, which speeds the bursting process up.

Similarly, I’m not sure if catching a grazing slash against your elbow being a death sentence is necessarily rewarding and feels rather cheap.

As such, I feel that slashes should have a low infection chance, and that their greatest utility should be slowing people and adding-on wounds. However, zombies should have a bite ability that is a wind-up, and guaranteed to do heavy damage and apply an advanced stage of infection. This would mean, ideally, that combat becomes less a matter of lucky scratches from across cadelines, and moreso represent common portrayals of zombies dragging someone down into a horde, feasting on them, and the victim raising up soon after. Additionally, it would help to swell the zombie ranks for gaining confirmed kills, whereas a few walking around to slash bodies to rise in a few minutes is less engaging and thematic.
Bonus points if the bite ability heals the zombie doing it.

Rotting Constitution:
A complaint I often see about zombies at present is that once they get started, it is difficult to stop them on account of how hard it is to ensure they are put-down properly and consistently.

Due to this, I believe they should all have reduced limb health, but none of the pain or bleeding that would cripple a mortal character. The intention here is that zombies could be delimbed under heavy fire, potentially leading to crawlers with no legs or glorified meat shields with no arms, but may still be able to infect downed marines through a bite. Also, of course: more dependable decapitations.

Overall, I believe that both of these changes would

  1. Reduce aggravation resulting from one lucky scratch ending your round.
  2. Aid how fast zombies can raise corpses (or very unlucky marines)
  3. Give marines a way to apply attrition and confirm kills consistently, and promote zombie swarming.

My biggest issue with zombies is that I will get hit once and then there is no point in playing because I am dead already. Most of the time this won’t be to my own fault because since every time this has happened it was because the 50 marines surrounding me didn’t shoot the ugly, deformed, bulbous headed thing going straight towards me when all I have is a flamethrower and 5 marines in the way.

Legitimately with how infections work i feel like it would be meta as a zombie to simply just slash a marine once and see what happens because if you are infected, you are boned.

I really like the biting idea because it rewards zombie players for making good decisions or capitalizing on mistakes that a marine may make. Simply getting hit once and it being a death sentence when in usual CM people walk around with 5 different fractures just fine isn’t really fun. When the perfect organism is less dangerous than humans with rabies.


I feel that part of what makes a good zombie or infection story is very often missing from rounds of CM… Buildup and tension. There is not really a slow buildup of tension in many of the zombie rounds and I think it hurts what would be a great change of pace from the average round. In fact from the getgo I would say the tension is kind of ruined when everyone knows it will be a zombie round in the first place instead of a gradual realization as the round goes on.

Not helping is just how fast zombies can be, how easy it is to get infected and also just how durable zombies are. A lot of what Arty and Blackhill have said is a good way to fix that part of the issue but I feel if you really want to make a zombie round more memorable it needs to have tension, you need things to be nice and slow at first and then once things go off the rails it feels more earned. Marines dropping and then five minutes later getting bitten and dying doesn’t have the same impact as say a single marine getting bit by a stray dog or feral looking human and then causing a panic after he gets sent topside and turns.

With a slower pace you can make more marines more cautious and panicky which can build up all the real narratives you want in a zombie setting a test of peoples character. How are some people going to react? The best stories with Zombies are never about the zombies themselves but the experiences and trials the human survivors go through dealing with them and that’s what I think is the real thing needed for a Zombie event to be memorable.


(sorry this got so long.)
Just as a comment, the idea with limp damage being lower is amazing, because having crwalers would be dope as heck. Last zombie round i playd i already saw some zombies just lay down, pretending to be dead between walking zombies. Attacking a marine that walked by the other, now freshly killed zombies.
And the biting is a great idea. And i imdiatly thougth of a zombie game that shows how it would be done very good. Project zomboid. You have like a 20% chance to be infected by a slash but if you hear that CRUNCH from a bit, its a 100% chance. But until there is an option to do that windup bite or something similar, slashes should stay 100%. It just adds to the feel you know?

Why should the virus be incredibly easy to catch?
Zombies are not scary because “uhhh, scary cropses” no. They are scary because how easy they spread. It doesnt matter how well you prepare, how good you watch out. One slip up, from you or from anyone, means your life is done. The fear, of the realisation of how close you actually are to death. Zombies are scary, because they remind us of how easy it is to die. We have t make sure we dont die every day, just its a lot harder to mess that one up. But zombies just elevate it. Onces you got the virus you know your time is counted. It wont be fast, you still have more then enough time to say goodbye to your friends and family. Slowly dying, knowing it will only get worse. A slow and painfull death. Often depicted with highfever, and general sickness sypmtobs like vomiting. All to a point we the dehydration and malnuriment from the symptons is more likley to kill you before the virus does so. All making the bullet, chamberd in the gun on your hips, looking more and more like the happy ending.

I know its often depicted diffrent but this is in my opinion the best way this is depictied in media. The incredibel fear this virus can provoke. I mean the corona virus showed pretty good when a deadly virus is scary. Because its so easy to catch it. Making you scared to even leave your house. And that fear is what zombies bring. What makes them great.

But to go to the orginal thing of the OP: Great, its just fast zombies, wich is solid. Both fast weak and slow tanky zombies are equally a thing in meadia. No reason to not have any over the other.

Then again we could combine it with the rotting idea. Being that zombies have 3 states. Fresh, composing, and rotten.

  1. Fresh: Fast zombies, but realtivly weak because they still rely ont there muscels and bones to function a lot to run and stuff. They dont have that full zombie strength and imortality yet.

  2. Composing: are just a middel stage. Feel like it would need it.

  3. Rotten: The virus is in full effect. The flesh rotten to a point where it drips of the walking corpse. Only a few veins holding the arms still attached. making it easy for the arms and egs to be shot of or just cut of. Leaving crawlers that can only bite.

Yeah sorry for this wall, but zombies in general is just close to my heart. I wanted to romantasies a bit.

May i suggest an alternate version of this? given the zombies are clearly meant to be humans infected with black goo i suggest using a similar life cycle to this

I do think that one slash leading to almost guaranteed infection is just outright dumb. Considering the fact that a lot of marines wear armor, and some even fully protected by it, such as the pyro. How are the zombies able to suddenly grow such large claws that can spread infection THROUGH ARMOR. Armor should definitely lessen infection chance and this could also punish people who use meta loadouts with no armor

You’re also correct about one slash causing extreme slowness. If you do SOMEHOW manage to survive getting mauled, you will be infected and your round is basically over. Slashes should definitely be nerfed and then addition of a windup bite would be much better.

Personal aside, I can’t stand getting slashed over cades and the round now being “joever”. I’ve come to the conclusion that standing anywhere near the front on a zombies round is guaranteed suicide and I’ll just let others take the hits.


If Marines can get 1 tap near garunteed infected and all the zombie has to do is suicide rush them fully knowing they can get up its not fun for either side, especially considering the marine is likely going to behead them and essentially force them to AFK the rest of the game, put them in a cade box or cheese them with shocked doors.

Making the infection chance not dependent on RNG would be great, adopting a zombie infection system like one on TG where you can use toxin meds or get a zombie tumour amputated would I think solve this, since you can still kill a marine and get them to rise up, but you wont be getting slashed once and waiting 10 minutes for infection to take over and get beheaded.

We could also just limit the event to shipside which would speed the round up and make sure dchat isnt waiting ages

I would imagine seeing the literal corpse, decaying flesh, horrible smell and lifeless eyes from a loved one or comrade standing up of its own accord and coming after you is just as horrific as the infection element if not more so.

I believe their is a very low chance that you don’t get infected from a slash, as I’ve been slashed once but never turned. I also agree with the surgery, perhaps in the earlier stages you could prevent it, but the later stages, it’s too late.

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I have definitely gotten mauled to death without getting infected before, but it’s definitely a rare case because that’s the only time it’s happened to me and I’ve played a fair few zombie rounds.

If zombies were weak but incredibly fast but had a way to really screw someone up and infect them while not worrying about getting beheaded and boned then that would be way more balanced.

The only way to have fun with zombies is going in a mentality that you will lose which is fine but when there isn’t even a chance that you will win unless the admins decide so and you lose jot because you made a mistake but you lost because a zombie slashed you once in the hand and then you start puking?

Zombies just need to be made to horde people down and snowball because they can wear you down but not because if they hit you once you are basically dead already.

Zombies being able to infect with just 1 slash means the meta for infection rounds is to play without any armor at all, because no amount of armor will protect you.

Infection should probably be tied to some kind of grab/bite, maybe slashing only infects if the marine player actually dies or permanently dies, rather than 1 slash = you’re gone.

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That gives me some ideas.

  1. Similar to Call_me_Arty bite mechanic. Maybe instead of actual 1 slash infection, they should get an ability akin to a lurker or vamp lurker similar to crippling strike named “infectious bite” that will infect marines only when they are downed. So now there is option for zombies to slash a marine to crit or to try to disarm/push a marine down. Maybe even add an “upgrade” system around the amount of infectious biting a zombie has and reward them with enhanced abilities.

  2. It is super awkward when you killed a zombie, you either have marines shoot the head a gajillion times or slash. Maybe make the revive system have a 50/50 chance for a zombie to get up or stay dead. Maybe have some sorta pylon mechanic that marines have to clear out to stop zombies from spawning. Encourage the marines to push out and clear those out instead of FOB camping.

  3. Have preset multiple ERT spawn waves on the ground spawning survivors, half of them are infected with their goal of trying to escape and board the Almayer. The marines would obviously want to prevent this and contain the infection. Now the marines have a choice of trying to quarantine the survivors to weed out the infected or to just shoot them on sight to not risk it. Boom, now you have HVH gameplay in a zombies mode that would satisfy those players.

true, but that just shows that the horror of it isnt “mass of hard to kill enemys” its so much deeper. Its great.