Illustrations by Robin Miao Wang
Shanghai has experienced immense growth in the last decade and today provides much of the fuel that powers China’s economic train. However, being one of the largest and most densely populated cities on earth makes it highly susceptible to a zombie outbreak. Should that day arrive, these tips and tricks will keep you from winding up dead, or dead-ish!
In such a densely populated environment, isolated cases of infection will reach triple digits within the first few weeks. Information will likely be limited, therefore it is important to frequent independent news outlets, such as blogs, for the most honest and up to date outbreak information. An increase in violence ,in a relatively non-violent city like Shanghai, should be a good hint that infection is spreading.
If you’re smart enough to figure out what is happening early on, then your best bet is to get out of the city. Putting as much distance between you and ground-zero is important, not only to avoid infection, but also to disassociate yourself from the inevitable humanitarian crisis that will follow.
While Shanghai isn’t the ideal location to be in the case of an outbreak, it is a good spot to defend against such a disaster. The city’s skyscrapers will allow much of the population to put enough distance between themselves, and the ensuing chaos at ground-level, to make survival possible. The city’s financial center, Pudong, provides the greatest opportunity for locating a formidable shelter, but one first has to get there.
Use of trains is ill-advised, and while cars may seem like a great option initially, a city-wide traffic jam will likely result in an all you can eat buffet for the undead. The best option is the use of small vehicles, such as motorcycles and bicycles, or to move by foot.
The city’s elevated roads should be avoided when possible. Finding oneself trapped on a raised road or bridge, in the path of the walking dead, leaves little options for escape. Shanghai’s abundance of ground level highways, roads, and alleyways offer the best chance for safer traveling. Because fast travel is a necessity, it’s important to carry as little as possible. Never go outside without a means of self defense (see Arming Against the Undead) as hand to hand combat with the enemy is ill-advised.
The most dangerous part of a journey will be crossing the Huangpu River. While the bridges and tunnels are dangerous, they will be the best option for most of the population (it should be noted that tunnels may be sealed in later months to isolate infected areas). The most important thing when seeking out a shelter is to keep moving, and while a ferry may be a safer option, the time spent waiting for one makes it a dangerous choice.
The Shanghai World Financial Center
The tallest building in the city, its defensive capabilities go without saying. The restaurants below and proximity to other food sources also make it a good choice. However, such an obvious location is vulnerable to overcrowding and supply shortage.
A natural fortress, easily barricaded and defended. Easy access to food storage both inside and around the stadium make it an ideal location. However overcrowding is a problem that should not be overlooked.
The Oriental Pearl Tower
Necessary elevator use make the top floors nearly impermeable by the undead. On the same note, this may make movement of supplies difficult. Also, should the elevators fail or electricity be turned off individuals may find themselves trapped.
Like any natural disaster it’s important to gather the necessities in order to survive. One should take into account that rescue or escape opportunities may not come for months, if at all, so it’s best to gather as much food and water as possible.
To avoid a heap of spoiled, useless food two weeks in, one should seek out supplies that last. Instant ramen noodles are the best choice, and provide nearly all nutrients necessary to ensure survival. Their availability in convenience stores throughout the city makes them a key resource.
Arming Against the Undead
Only significant damage to the brain will result in destruction of the zombie-foe. Although firearms ultimately provide the best defense against the undead, their scarcity in Shanghai makes seeking them out an unnecessary risk. Any type of close range combat is ill advised as any wound sustained provides potential for infection. The weaponry section is thus divided into three categories:
Any type of hard object that permits a safe distance between you and the undead is ideal. Items such as shovels, golf clubs, hammers, rolling pins and reinforced fishing poles, as well as any combination of the aforementioned, all make ideal weapons.
The high concentration of construction sights within Shanghai make materials such as scrap metal readily available. By fixing pieces of metal onto the front of a motorbike or car in a triangular shape, one can create a kind of plow. Although unlikely to destroy enemies, it will keep you out of harms way.
Close range combat
Due to the high risk of infection, this combat is ill advised and should only be used as a last resort. Any type of small sharp object is recommended i.e. knives, keys, chopsticks. These weapons should be forcefully inserted into the eyes of the undead, maximizing the chances of neurological damage.
Quarantine and Cleansing
The aftermath of a zombie outbreak will damage both a county’s economy and reputation. Given China’s position as a prominent world power, it is likely that its government will attempt to keep the true scale of any such outbreak under wraps.
Shanghai would most likely be quarantined with any non-infected residents deemed as collateral damage. Travel to and from China, particularly the areas in close proximity to Shanghai, would be completely under government regulation so escaping from inside the quarantined zone.
Several past outbreaks have resulted in “viral cleansing”, or a complete elimination of the virus through destruction of all host parties. While its unlikely this would occur within the city center, its possible that the outer district of Shanghai may be subject to this.