Meet the Fans: Tom

Working on Zombies, Run! we’re lucky to have a very dedicated, creative and overall lovely fanbase. We try to celebrate that whenever we can, so we’ve been talking to some of our fans and would now like to introduce another of our fan interviews!

Today, we’re talking to Tom about creativity, and their favourite characters!

A photograph of part of Tom’s running route.

What got you into Zombies, Run! In the first place?

I think initially I saw a post about it on Tumblr, maybe around 2013. I was never one for physical exercise when I was younger, but thought that maybe this app could help kick things into motion. Now I can’t spend a single day without getting out and moving, even if it’s just a 30 minute walk. I came for the promise of zombie chases and stayed for the very lovable characters and the plots surrounding them. In fact, I don’t use the zombie chase feature that much nowadays. 

Was there a point during your initial run of ZR which hooked you? A point where you went ‘yes! This is for me’?

I actually started listening to Radio Mode first because I didn’t know where to “properly” start. I think I listened up to the point where it’s official that Jack and Eugene are together and I think that’s what really hooked me. I remember thinking “wow, there’s queer representation in this game!”, I didn’t know at first and it made me really happy. After that, I ran a couple of regular story missions and everything just kind of fell even more into place as I met more characters and the plot developed. 

Some of Tom’s artwork, featuring Jack, Eugene, Zoe, and Phil!

Who is your favourite character, and why?

Picking favourites is always hard but I think my top three would be Eugene, Simon and Janine. I love Janine for her resourcefulness and her ability to make hard decisions, we’re quite the opposite in many ways but I adore her. In Simon I can see a few bits of myself and his story is one of the most compelling to me. Eugene is one of the characters that made me fall hard for Zombies, Run! as a whole. I mean, who doesn’t have a crush on that guy?

What was your best ZR experience?

I think the early days of my Zombies, Run! journey has some of the best moments. I used to walk around the fields at my parents’ place. It’d be at night, in the summer, and I’d mainly use the app to keep me company or make me take routes I hadn’t before. It has a very nostalgic feeling to it. The app really helped me get out of the house, even during hard days.

In short, I found Zombies, Run! at a very low point in my life. It helped take my mind off of difficult thoughts that’d occur when I was outside. It sounds cheesy but Zombies, Run! will probably always have a very special place in my heart. It’s helped me through a lot.

Tom’s brilliant tattoo of Abel’s radio tower!

You draw a lot of cool artwork. Do you have a favourite ZR subject to make artwork of?

Thank you! Even though I tend to draw Simon or Jack and Eugene most of the time I usually just draw what I feel inspired to. Music is usually my go-to for inspiration so if a song that plays reminds me of a certain character then that’s probably who I’m going to draw. Overall I love drawing characters together, showing life in Abel and relationships without focusing on the zombies but rather people living together as a community. 

Artwork of sleeping arrangements in Abel Township

What’s your favourite music to run to? (Spotify playlist would be great!)

I have a lot of different playlists for running, all in terrible disarray. I tend to go for music that makes me want to move. Sometimes pace matters but sometimes the most important thing is to feel energized. There’s a lot of CHVRCHES in all my playlists. I put together a short playlist with some songs from my other playlists for you guys. 

Do you have any fanfic/fanart recommendations?

There are a lot of amazing creators in our community. I always feel a deep connection to the scenery in wubbelwubbwubb’s art. I don’t know how they do it but somehow they always manage to convey that deep nostalgic feeling I associate with Zombies, Run!. 

Yariem-alkahen does some really funny art of some of homeboundrunnerfive’s text posts which I really enjoy. It’s nice how an app about the end of the world can be turned into humour and memes. The world needs more of that, especially during hard times. 

Thank you Tom for speaking with me! You can find Tom on Tumblr and on Instagram!