Hey, you runners out there (or would-be or should-be runners — you know who you are) — if you’re looking for motivation or a way to spice up the routine, perhaps what you need is a big helping of zombie apocalypse.
Seriously, what better incentive to strap up the New Balances and pick up your kilometre pace than a pack of re-animated inhumans bearing down on your with gangrenous claws and fetid breath?
Saving your hide while piling up the distance is just one facet of a smartphone game app that has attracted a horde of attention on Kickstarter. Zombies, Run! already has received more than three times the pledge total sought on the startup fundraising site.
The developer, Six to Start, is based in London and has done game design or development work for the BBC, Disney and Muse. The lead writer for Zombies, Run! is Naomi Alderman, an author with a Doctor Who novel under her belt.
In Zombies, Run! the participant assumes the role of Runner 5, a survivalist in a world gone wonky. During a run, the game delivers orders and voice messages that offer clues about items the runner will collect for the various bases of the world’s remaining humans. When the gamer’s run is done, he allocates the items and pores over unlocked puzzles, websites and documents.
And, of course, the game also logs the runner’s distance, time, pace and calories burned. The missions last 20 to 30 minutes, and 30 unique missions are planned for the first release.
A fascinating thing about this Kickstarter project is its wild level of success, with more than $43,000 pledged to a $12,500 goal. Six to Start says in its bid that extra funds will be used to create mission packs of longer and shorter durations; multiplayer support; integration with the RunKeeper fitness app; and celebrity voice talent (Nathan Fillion and Felicia Day are name-dropped).
Naturally, you’re asking: Will this app cost an arm and a leg? Of course not. But it will require some brraaaaains.
Image by Moggs Oceanlane