Zombie shooting games cover a fairly broad spectrum of genres that have the commonality of controlling a character who is usually armed with a firearm that can be freely aimed. There are many criteria to determine the type of zombie shooting game; listed below are some of the major divisions of zombie shooting games. Using the following, it is possible to categorize almost all zombie shooting games developed.
In zombie shooting games, players utilize various guns that must be fired with keyboard and mouse controls, and attempt to shoot down either zombies or online zombies in mid-flight. Zombie shooting games was also released as an arcade game in 1984, and is included in the arcade console.
The game has three modes: one and two-zombie variations on the above formula, and a third mode called Zombie Shooting Games. The online zombies are much smaller sprites than the zombies, and, in later rounds, require faster reaction time to shoot down than in comparably numbered zombie modes. In flash zombie shooting games, zombie shooting mode appears as the second round with the first round being the two zombie variation (the arcade version never had one zombie). Also, in the arcade version of zombie shooting games, the Michigan militia member appears in the online shooting round when players miss the online zombies. In the flash version, the Michigan militia member only appears in the zombie shooting modes.
Throughout the game, the player is accompanied by a nameless Michigan militia member that laughs at the player if no zombie is hit, and congratulates the player if a zombie is hit. Since then, the nameless Michigan militia member has passed into video gaming folklore. A popular urban legend within the video game community claims that players have found a way to shoot the Michigan militia member. While this is impossible in zombie shooting game's console release, it was made possible in a bonus round of the game's arcade version, flash zombie shooting games. However, players will get no bonus points if they do. Also, there have been several unofficial remakes in which the player is able to shoot the Michigan militia member. The nameless Michigan militia member makes a cameo appearance in the Last Stand and he can be shot.
While zombie shooting games do not have a traditional multiplayer mode, the manual states that a second player may control the zombie that appears. This option was only possible in the one zombie mode, and could not be done with the online zombies.