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Columbus, the protagonist from Zombieland said that the main reason for his survival is that he followed a set of rules that he drew up himself to survive the zombie apocalypse. 32 rules were originally made and although not all of them are known, the rest of them are listed below.
- Update: Official Rules (and their appropriate numbers) Here
To escape a pursuing zombie you will need to out-run it, and this means being in good shape.
2. Double Tap
When in doubt, don't get stingy with your bullets.
Most zombies won't die from just one hit unless it's a shot to the head, and it will instead get up in very little time - and will then bite you. The most effective way to prevent this is to take a second shot/hit to their head which will stop them from attacking again, and surely one more shot can't do too much harm! For this to work, you will need at least two shots in your gun at all times so you can double tap without having to worry about reloading in time (you usually won't get that time). Luckily, the second shot should be easier as the first shot should take the zombie to the floor and temporarily prevent the zombie from moving
3. Beware of Bathrooms
You are at your most vulnerable while sitting on the toilet, so always take extra care.
Zombies seem to sneak up on people who are at their most vulnerable, although it probably just seems like this as zombies just attack with no special circumstances. However, this does not change the fact that toilets are places you want to be careful around - if you are caught with your trousers down then there's not much you can do about running away, so you better have brought a gun with you. The best way to stay safe is to check each bathroom before you enter, in every cubicle and every section as it isn't rare to find one just waiting there. Also remember that just because it's not socially acceptable to climb under cubical doors, it doesn't mean the zombies won't do it.
4. Buckle Up
You won't be driving along easy roads anymore: with numerous things to avoid you need to be ready for a crash!
The reason for seatbelts is fairly obvious as it pretty much carries over from the reason we are advised to wear them normally - being thrown at the windscreen doesn't usually end well. In Zombieland, however, you're much more likely to be flying through the windscreen as you try avoding escaping vehicles, dodging through abandoned cars or slamming on your brakes (or just driving faster) as a zombie steps in front of your car. For this reason, it's usually a good idea to stick on a seatbelt so you don't make the embarrassing mistake of dying from a cause other than zombie. However, some people argue that wearing a seatbelt is an inconvenience as it slows you down valuable seconds while trying to get out of the car which is being fast approached by zombies. It's also argued that crashing is a fairly ridiculous thing to worry about when the majority of people are trying to eat you. These doubts aside, it is usually safest to wear belts.
5. Travel Light
While trying to get away from a mass of zombies, the last thing you want is to be heaving luggage around.
Zombies can surprise you at any moment by coming from behind objects or running toward you when you aren't expecting it, and you'll need to make a fast get away. As well as cardio to out-run the zombie you'll also need to be light on your feet, and that means reducing the weight of the objects you are carrying with you. So instead of a big heavy suitcase that may be able to carry all of your personal possessions and luxuries, you'd be safer with a smaller amount of luggage such as a backpack or anything that is easy to carry and won't slow you down. Under some circumstances it might be best to carry nothing but weaponry, but if you are seeking shelter and there is a lower chance of being attacked by zombies then it's always best to bring a bag with medical supplies, spare magazines and perhaps maybe a lightweight luxury. It is implied that unless baggage is absolutely vital to short term survival, it should always be considered expendible, able to be dropped at a moments notice to flee to safety.
6. Don't Be A Hero
Possibly the most important rule of all. Don't risk your own life just to make yourself look good.
When taking risks in Zombieland, the risk is pretty much always that you might get eaten alive by zombies. This isn't a risk you want to be taking so rather than trying to go for the "bad boy look", simply take a step back and keep yourself safe. Unfortunately you won't make yourself look too impressive if a zombie is currently biting into your arm. However, remember that there are certain circumstances where perhaps this rule should be ignored, so that maybe you save someone who makes staying alive worth it, or making sure that you will still have a partner to back you up later - as they might be responsible for saving your life later. Always follow this rule... except when you shouldn't.
7. Limber Up
Before going into a zombie-infested area, you will need to prepare for the impending running by limbering up.
When approaching an area which will definitely or is likely to have zombies, it is always best to limber up using a few moves so that you are in peak physical condition when moving in. This means that if a zombie or numerous zombies do appear and begin to chase you, then you are able to out-run them without worries about pulling muscles or injuring yourself while running - something that could mean life or death. Of course, if you are suddenly ambushed by zombies while unprepared then limbering up will obviously be a rather unwise move, as getting away from or killing the zombies is your main priority.
8. When In Doubt, Always Know Your Way Out
Zombies can surprise you at any time, whether it be while you are sleeping, driving, relaxing, eating, playing, peeing, kissing, or on the toilet. For this reason, you should always know the fastest and best way out of the room/building you are in, just in case you are victim to a surprise attack. Make a mental note of any other doors you can take which have the quickest route away from your current location. It may also be best to prop the door open so you do not have to spend precious time trying to unlock/open the door. But don't just know this exit way, also know how you can get to it - there's no use knowing about an emergency exit if you have no idea how to get to it. This rule is all about knowing your surroundings and preparing yourself for the worst.
9. The Buddy System
You can't always look in front of you and behind you at the same time
Even though the common zombie is slow they can still surround you and trap you in a corner, so with the help of a buddy you have a better chance of clearing and keeping an area safe. There is also another great reason to follow this rule which would be in case you get an injury the assistance of another person can be perfect for this situation. If you don't want to be with people, It's easier using a handgun to your head.
10. Check The Back Seat
Before getting into the car and driving off, check the back seat for any hiding zombies.
The temptation is to get into the safe haven of a car and drive off feeling like you are invisible to all zombies within your mobile steel cage. However, despite the car being relatively safe from outside zombies, you need to be prepared for any zombies that might leap up from behind you and start to attack. The last thing you need while driving is to have a zombie crawling up behind you trying to bite you, because even if the zombie doesn't bite you - it may manage to stop you from keeping the car going and then next thing you know, you'll have crashed the car or stopped it for all the other zombies to get to. There is also the possibility that the zombie reanimated in his seatbelt. If this is the case then kill it quickly without getting to close. Of course if you're in a rush to jump in the car then you may not have time to check the back, but make sure you're expecting something and as soon as you get the chance, look in the back.
11. Enjoy The Little Things
As well as surviving all the zombies, you'll also need to maintain a happy and sane state of mind by keeping positive.
With the constant stress of staying alive with little time to put down your gun and rest, it's important that whenever you do get the time, you spend it on entertaining yourself. Of course, in Zombieland it's not easy to entertain yourself in any extravagant way such as playing on games, playing sports or watching TV. So instead it's best to enjoy the little things that come your way whether that be having fun with another survivor, enjoying a luxury you come across, lying back and forgetting about all the problems in the world or even just destroying a whole bunch of little things. Without enjoying the little things, it's all too easy for you to lose sanity and peace of mind from the constant stress and pains of staying alive.
Don't Scare Survivors
Bill Murry tried to scare Colombus and ended up getting shot in the chest, so in that case, never scare another survivor (especially if they have a gun) and especially don't dress up as a zombie without informing ALL others you know about.