Zedtown is the brainchild of two uni students, who looked at their Nerf blasters and saw an opportunity to create something unique in the Australian market. Catering to thousands of players each year, Zedtown creates an immersive alternate reality where humans take a turn at vanquishing zombies.
Unlike the ethos of the hugely popular Walking Dead series, the golden rule for Zedtown players is “don’t be a jerk” (even if you’ve been turned into a zombie).
Techly chatted to Zedtown’s Managing Director, Andrew Garrick, about the most challenging and rewarding aspects of steering an innovative Aussie experience business.
Explain what Zedtown is, and why it’s relevant for young Aussies.
We all crave adventure. Would I survive in the post-apocalypse world? Would I turn my back on my friends, or would I be a team player? Zedtown is the answer to those questions.
Zedtown is a 4-hour event where Colour Run meets Call of Duty. Hundreds of players, playing as Survivors vs Zombies, are armed with only their Nerf blasters. Everyone starts as a Survivor. Unique characters give you quests, a call-in radio station gives tips, and an app tracks players’ achievements. Each player works with their squad to make it to the final stand
BUT when you’re tagged by a Zombie, you become one and there’s only one thing you want: hunt the most braaaaains.
What’s been the most challenging & most rewarding aspect of running an innovative business in Australia?
Most Challenging: The sheer scale of what we’re attempting in a limited-audience market. Australia’s a really big country, but it’s got a relatively small population.
Most Rewarding: Seeing the pure joy on the faces of our players on game day, and the exhausted happiness in the eyes of our huge teams of actors, makeup gurus, crew and marshals. We’re also beginning a relationship with The Children’s Medial Research Institute, which adds a layer of worthiness to our nerdiness.
What’s the most exciting new technology you’d like to incorporate into your day-to-day?
We’ve just built a native iOS and Android App to help control the game, and massive pylons which are like respawn points which contain the smartest electronics which I genuinely don’t understand. The engineer who made them is the cleverest person I know, and our business will work because of his prowess.
What’s the best customer feedback you’ve received?
To be honest, we get hundreds of messages and posts every day from people who had a good time, but my favourite is a detailed genuine love of the gameplay from our recent Melbourne event:
“Thanks again Zedtown Melbourne was so much fun to those who asked my FB and remember me capturing the yellow flag …I was the guy who destroyed yellow base with my medic card depleted your fuel and sabotaged your machine after grabbing the flag you can thank me later in Sydney night game :P”
He gets us.