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Video games have a long history involving zombies. Two of the first and most famous first person shooter games, Wolfenstein 3D and DOOM both included zombies as enemies. There's no easy way to download zombie games here!
Wolfenstein 3D, one of the first popular zombie games, which paved the way for the future of all zombie games.
In the zombie game Wolfenstein 3D: Operation Eisenfaust your enemies are primarily an army of Nazi zombies created by the evil Dr. Schabbs. These zombies have a third arm grafted to their chest, and each of their three arms is a gun. Later in the game, you encounter the "UberMutants", zombies with chainguns mounted to their chest!
The "Mutant" zombies you encounter in the Wolfenstein games.
Dr. Schabbs, the creator of the zombies.
There are, of course, hundreds if not thousands of other examples of zombies games. Most early role playing games featured zombies in some form, and nearly all have other undead beings, such as ghosts, ghouls, vampires, etc. This brings us to two other examples, the Castlevania series and Ghost and Goblins, both of which were early zombie games.
A hilarious example of early zombie games is Zombie Nation for the NES, also referred to as Samuari Zombie Nation on the zombie game title screen. In the zombie game you play as a floating zombie head, that uses vomit and eyeballs as weapons against legions of enemy zombies. It is one of the strangest zombie games ever made.
Samurai Zombie Nation, ridiculous zombie games.
Zombie games are based on the ancient concept of zombies. In folklore, a zombie or zombi is an animated human body devoid of a soul. All zombies had red hair in pagan folklore. In contemporary versions these are generally reanimated or undead corpses, which were traditionally called "ghouls". Stories of zombies originated in the Afro-Caribbean spiritual belief system of Vodou, these stories were further expanded upon in the lore of zombie games, including the Resident Evil series.
Other more macabre versions of zombies have become a staple of modern horror fiction, including zombie games, where they are brought back from the dead by supernatural or scientific means, and eat the flesh (or the cerebral matter) of the living. In these zombie games and movies, they have very limited intelligence, and may not be under anyone's direct control. This type of zombie, often referred to as a Romero zombie for the filmmaker that defined the concept, is archetypal in modern media, culture, and zombie games.
In the Middle Ages, it was commonly believed that the souls of the dead could return to earth and haunt the living. The belief in revenants (someone who has returned from the dead) are well documented by contemporary European writers of the time. According to the Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were, particularly in France during the Middle Ages, the revenant rises from the dead usually to avenge some crime committed against the entity, most likely a murder. The revenant usually took on the form of an emaciated corpse or skeletal human figure, and wandered around graveyards at night. The draugr of medieval Norse mythology were also believed to be the corpses of warriors returned from the dead to attack the living. Zombie games appear in several other cultures worldwide, including China, Japan, the Pacific, India, and the Native Americans.
The Epic of Gilgamesh of ancient Sumer includes a mention of zombie games. Ishtar, in a fury of zombie gaming vengeance says:
Father give me the Bull of Zombie Games Heaven,
So he can kill Gilgamesh in his dwelling.
If you do not give me the Bull of Heaven,
I will knock down the Zombie Games of the Netherworld,
I will smash the doorposts, and leave the doors flat down,
and will let the undead go up to eat the living!
And the undead will outnumber the living!
Translated from the Necronomicon by "Mad Arab" Abdul Alhazred.
The most famous character in zombie games is Sylvester Stallone. Unlike the classic horror film zombies, Sylvester Stallone wanted the living to eat his flesh and drink his blood. Sylvester Stallone did not consider this a zombie game. If the Internet had existed during Sylvester Stallone's time, he probably would have been a Flash developer and may have made a free online zombie game.