"Zombie Nemesis" Negative Trait or Scenario!

Pth mentioned that I should move this idea over onto a more appropriate forum, and I’ve talked about this previously in the Draw Your Cataclysms thread, so I’ve got some concept art and a basic idea of how this would work!

The basic idea for this is that this would be either a negative trait that you could pick for your character in any scenario, or it’d be an “Any Class” scenario.

Whatever way of it, it works like this: Along with your standard fare of zombies, you’d have one Zombie Nemesis. You could give this zombie a custom name and phrases by modding the files to make it fit with your character’s story, or you could go with a standard zombie who just seems to want you dead - in the case of the image above I’d name my zombie nemesis Coulter, and he’d occasionally utter phrases relating to the failure of the Skybreaker Project, blaming Chaz for the Cataclysm.

The Zombie Nemesis is a fearsome type - possibly a Brute, possibly just a standard zombie that’s a bit tougher and faster and generally more dangerous, the idea is that they’re a terrifying presence to your character, and you’ll get a hit to your morale if they’re nearby. They can be killed just like any other zombie, and pulping them will give you a little morale boost (“Took out some frustration on [Nemesis]” perhaps), but even pulping them won’t stop them from getting up - if possible, they’d flee some time after recovering from being killed/pulped, and skulk somewhere nearby for their next ambush, or otherwise approach the player again after a few days.

If the player attempts to butcher or enslave their nemesis, much like in a horror movie the nemesis will leap up from their position and attack the player before fleeing, resulting in a potentially nasty wound and a decent hit to morale (“Was jumped by [Nemesis]”, possibly!).

I’m not 100% sure how this might work out, but I sorta like the idea of having it be an option for players who want to have a little bit of a slasher movie style bent to their zombie apocalypse survival.

It adds some fun story value that I think some folks might really appreciate playing with. Extra challenge too, potentially. Would this nemesis have the same chance to evolve like other zombies do with seasons passing? That would get scary.

Ooooh, I do like that idea. An evolving zombie who is for some reason determined to track your character down. Freaky stuff. \o/

I can’t really see a single specific ‘Zombie Nemesis’ type character working out in a way that it isn’t just a recurring total pushover of an enemy (just beating em to death everyother day) or doesn’t feel like a total cheese to the player (ridiculous amount of regeneration, instant revival, unbutcherable). Maybe if it was a decidedly more Netherish or Blob-like entity? Then it could just kind of melt away after being defeated to then appear at a later date.

I’d definitely support a drawback/screnario enemy who get’s progressively more dangerous as you kill them though, especially if they adapt to be more resistant to your weapons of choice. Burn em to death with a flamethrower? It’s more resistant to fire next time. Run em down with your death mobile? Reinforced skeleton to deal with blunt force trauma. High powered rifle? Suddenly immune to small arms fire. And so on.


It’s faster, stronger and tougher then you.

It takes everything you have, but you defeat it.

But it will heal itself. And it will learn. It cannot be killed by the same weapon or technique twice. It will study you. Learn everything it can.

You will destory it time and time again, but it just won’t die.

It will find where you sleep. It will stalk you. It will learn how to counter your traps, break into your home, kill your friends.

It’s only a matter of time.[/i]

Now I’ve gone and psyched myself up to write a story about my disparate survivors meeting up and being hunted by a monstrous Thing-like nemesis.

I’m not fully into the evolving part, but the blobs that is the basis for the zombies is supposed to be a hivemind right?
Then maybe the zombie nemesis is a hub for communication, it already communicates with you so so I’d say it could be plausible.
As long as it is near what any zombie sees is relayed to all zombies in the vicinity, maybe some sort of buff too, then it doesn’t even have to be hostile to be scary and I’d think it’d be a lot more unsettling if it was more pacifist.
It’s just following you around taking your endless blows until one day you might fail.


Wouldn’t it just get weaker and weaker by beign rezzed so many times?
Maybe evolving it every time it rezzes givin it random specs?

These all sound like really cool ideas! My original idea was that the Zombie Nemesis was basically a zombified version of someone who had some personal connection to the survivor (much like how you can sometimes encounter your mother during hallucinations, and get a huge morale hit if you ‘kill’ her), except in this case the personal connection is that they’re someone the survivor hated before the apocalypse - in Chaz’s case, his old abusive project supervisor - so the mere sight of them sorta drains morale.

I need to draw a comic of what happens when you attempt to butcher a nemesis, but yes.

I like all these ideas though, keep them coming, I’ll be more able to read them once I’m up proper, haha

I like the idea of a nemesis Z who would evolve resistances to whatever damage type contributed the most to his last death. that way, the same method of killing wont work as well the second time, and might be fairly impossible by the 4th or 5th time. that way you cant just save your best gun for when the Nemesis pops up and then blast him away.

this might also help to encourage nomadic lifestyles if you eventually get to the point where it’s DAMN difficult to kill him and your base would otherwise be compromised

I’d expect nothing but an euphoric sense of satisfaction >.> worst comes to worse one could always burn the corpse

Great concept btw. do hope it wouldn’t end up being exceptionally masochistic.

Wasn’t the idea that he’ll follow you around? That would mean that, even in a nomadic lifestyle, you’d see the Nemesis every once in a while…or even creepier, you just see…messages…or something similar like this… ‘You have a bad feeling about this place.’ - minutes later, you find a bloody note or so, just with your name on it, crudely written in blood or something :stuck_out_tongue: After all, the Zombie Nemesis has to remember you at least a bit, if he has special phrases he can mutter. This could make for a really creepy atmosphere, youre sitting in your vehicle, and you hear…something…outside, you’re also still pondering about the note you found earlier, but you cant move, for example because the batteries of your vehicle have to recharge, or you’re out of gas and have to get to the next city to get more…

While it’s kinda a funny idea, it’s not exactly something I’d push for in the normal zombie Cata lore, honestly (though mod territory is, as always, fair game).

I don’t actually know if game lore would allow for a zombie to recall any of its host’s memories. That would be the biggest reason for this to be mod, and not in main. I still like it though.

Actually yeah, that’s a good point. I’d be fine with this being a mod rather than main.

Now I’m going a little off-topic here, but I wonder how difficult it’d be to either change or add custom characters that show up in hallucinations (Again, thinking back to how the character can hallucinate their mother showing up during a bad trip on shrooms - or a hallucinatory fit with schizophrenia). I wouldn’t mind modding the game a little myself to replace dream-Mom with dream-Coulter, for instance.

Actually, you know what? I’ve got another idea that could work for this (Again sorry for the derail - though I did start the topic, so!)

“Haunted” - Again, this should be easily modifiable by the player to personalise their story experience, but the general idea is that at low morale (Or if your morale is neutral but you’re not doing anything to distract yourself), you’ll occasionally encounter auditory or visual hallucinations - not as severe as tripping on drugs or having a schizophrenic episode, but all relating to one specific character (That you’d be able to specify through modding the files).

This would work for a number of different character scenarios - Chaz for instance might be Haunted by visions and memories of Coulter, a man convicted of murder may have lasting remorse over their last victim, a bereaved spouse may be haunted by thoughts of their significant other. The overall idea’s the same - their trauma, guilt or grief gives way to occasional bad memories that hit their morale pretty hard if not managed properly.

I dunno, I just like coming up with fun ideas regarding playing in-character (Plus I’m a sucker for tragic backstories sometimes)

-> hit nemesis with a truck hard enough to kill it

-> run over the corpse until it’s just a red smear on the road

Enh, suggesting another idea for a new trait inside a thread where you had an idea for a new trait seems on-topic enough for my satisfaction!

So, Haunted would be a transient morale penalty with some extra spooky? Seems like the biggest difference would be that unlike ‘bad temper’ (or whichever one opposes ‘optimist’), staving off the penalty would involve keeping one’s self occupied with tasks, rather than just chugging candies and drugs to feel happier. I find myself looking to gameplay value for something intended as a roleplay extension. I am going about this the hard way lol.

Yeah, it’s a little bit difficult to figure out how such a trait would work in terms of gameplay effects, though the way you described Haunted sounds about right - I figured it wouldn’t directly affect morale on its own (Like Bad Temper does - that’s the opposite of Optimist, yeah), but rather during quiet moments (For instance travelling between locations, or getting through a cold, maybe even reading a boring book) might result in spooky stuff happening.

Do we have a system for nightmares happening in the game yet? The Haunted trait might work nicely for such a thing - a character with the trait would have recurring nightmares - not every night, but there’d certainly be nightmares with the common theme in mind, which would wake them up in the middle of the night with another morale penalty.

At this point I’m still sorta figuring out the in-character implications of stuff, and using my own experience with trauma, anxiety and sleepless nights as a bit of a basis, ahaha.

Couldn’t this just be an artifact effect? Summons a nether nemesis (Nethesis?) To stalk you for as long as you carry the object, melts away but returns every so often. (Prefers to show up when you’re vulnerable–sleep attacks, mid-reload, crafting, low health etc.)

Or if we go the trait route how about you get feeling of dread or paranoia as a sort of ‘Nemesis Clock’ Staying in one position too long means it catches up with you and you have to fight it. This horror ‘frightens you to death’, landing too many attacks in a certain time span (Think a custom MA style like the snake venom) where only the final hit is the killer. No real damage until that last hit (But make the monster impossible to dodge and very slow.) The end result? No way to be certain if the creature is real or a paranoid delusion/Player must always keep moving.

I actually really like the idea of a Nether “guardian” as an artifact effect, sort of a modified nether “attention” version, plus its something that shows up in stories all the time (“Return the slab! Return the slab!”). And the fact that it’s a Nether creature means that we could have somewhat viable reasons for it appearing/disappearing (and possibly coming back after you kill it).

The “hunter nemesis monster” idea kinda works, but I think we’d need better distance tracking and monster movement about the map to really implement it well. Once again it would probably be more of a giant Nether creature that you managed to piss off somehow than a zombie one though. (And if it was large enough you could have an excuse for why your deathmobile crashes into it and just makes it angrier, as well as giving a very nice feeling if you ever do manage to kill it).

I like the idea that it’s some sort of nether creature. Perhaps being a creature of Lovecraftian-ish origin or stature, the mere presence of it could be a morale penalty.

And maybe an artifact effect that curses you with a specialized kind of hallucination. Strange creatures around you, not attacking you but simply just watching you. And chattering in their alien lingo that’ll bother you to no end.

Interesting how you thought this might work better as a mod, Chaz, and yet the most recent posts seem to be adapting it for a canonical role. HMMM. You may be onto something here >:B