The Great Escape

By Mike Rosenberg

I don't recall how it happened. But a great...hunger...took over me. Nothing could satisfy my craving, and it started to hurt. Burn. Seethe...I was twisted, tormented, and in agony...

...only flesh could satisfy my hunger, and sooth my pain. And with Comic-Con coming to San Diego, Petco Park was sure to be a buffet.

Con crud or zombie virus? You be the judge.

The Walking Dead Escape took place during the San Diego Comic-Con a few weeks ago. The event gave people a chance to run through an obstacle course set up at Petco Park as a survivor. They would go over obstacles and dodge the infected Walkers, and if they got to the end of the course, they won. If they got tagged by an infected Walker, they lost, as a victim of the zombie virus.

I was one of the lucky individuals who instead got to get the Walker treatment. Instead of running the obstacle course, I was instead stationed at one of the obstacles, tasked with tagging people as a Walker. I wore a glove that could be identified via infrared if I touched any survivor running by with my hand. Survivors would go through multiple contamination stations, and if the black-light showed that they were tagged, they lose.

But before that, I had to get the Walker treatment. This meant a quick make-up job from the fine folks who do the make-up for The Walking Dead series. The face was made bloody and pale, the hair wet and grimy, the nails blackened and decayed, and the body littered with blood droplets. Even people's teeth got the zombie treatment, as a Walker's chompers were probably the most horrifying looking thing that was done for all the Walkers in this event.

Walkers. Scary teeth are scary. Image courtesy of The Walking Dead Escape Facebook page.

The teeth, by the way, were fun. When I dropped in at the Cryptozoic Comic-Con Store for a surprise visit, it resulted in a chain reaction with some of the staff working at the event. I'd laugh, and they'd get freaked out by my teeth, their reactions would make me laugh more, they're freak out more, and so on. Good times!

My partner in Walker crime and I at our station near the end of the obstacle course started a competition in the first hour, as we saw how many victims we claimed while they crossed the bridge that we were guarding. He finished ahead, but by the end of our shifts, we had both lost count on how many survivors did not make it through our obstacle alive.

That being said, some people were just too quick on their feet, and managed to get through the course unscratched. Those people were few in number. The zombie virus doesn't discriminate, although it certainly favors the slow over the fast...

Overall, the event was a lot of fun. I was happy to be apart of it on Friday. I'd like to give a big thanks to the people who made this possible, as it was one of the most entertaining things to talk about from Comic-Con.

Rosenfloggen's picture Mike Rosenberg

Mike Rosenberg has been a long-time trading card game fan and an active freelancer in the hobby game industry since 2004. He wrote, editted, and managed web content for Cryptozoic Entertainment from March 2012 until October 2013.