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B.O.W. Model: "Zombie" (various types)
Base Organism: Human



A "zombie" is the direct result of a human being exposed to the t-virus, whether through direct infection or secondary exposure. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8


Discovered during the development stages of the t-virus in 1981 after the virus finally became stable enough to produce biological weapons for the staff at the Arklay Research Facility 9, zombies are a common sight during an outbreak of the t-virus due to the high population concentration of human beings in the contamination zones. Secondary infection leading to zombification is usually brought on by an infected water source or contact with virus-carrying rodents such as rats or mice, but there have also been records of the virus being carried by air depending on the strain of the t-virus in question. As well as this, creatures infected with the virus generally have the ability to infect others - a trait most exhibited in fact by zombies.

Whilst not directly an Umbrella Pharmaceutical B.O.W. in most cases, human experimentation has been vital in the development of viruses and many intentional zombies were created and disposed of to produce viable data. Due to the weapons development testing, these zombies are generally stronger than secondary infected specimens and are commonly dubbed "Naked Zombies", due to their distinct lack of clothing.

Raccoon City Incident

The first public outbreak of zombies occurred in the American mid-western town of Raccoon City. Following the mansion incident, the viral outbreak which occurred at the Arklay Research Facility continued to slowly leak into the city, with creatures being reported and rumours of a "cannibal disease" running rampant. Finally, on September 23, 1998, a large quantity of the t-virus was leaked in the city sewers following a failed attempt by Umbrella Special Forces to retrieve the G-virus, and the rodent population quickly began spreading the infection throughout the city. The next day, the outbreak hit a fever-pitch at a local football game in the city. Spectators from both in and outside of the city were present, and a single zombie eventually sparked a "riot" at the game. From there, the infection spread like wildfire. Thus, the first mass public outbreak and appearance of zombies occurred. Seizing the opportunity, Umbrella deployed its U.B.C.S. force to combat the infected, with its Monitors conducting a full investigation on them. The city was quarantined by the National Guard and on October 1, the infection was eradicated after the US government launched an experimental warhead into the city.

Harvardville Incident

The second public outbreak of the t-virus also occurred in a mid-western town. In a demonstration by WilPharma chief researcher Frederic Downing to General Miguel Grandé, an Atmos Airlines plane was contaminated with the virus. Meanwhile, Downing's "partner", Curtis Miller, infected Harvardville Airport with the virus, leading to a sudden outbreak at 3:00pm. The infection was quickly contained, but Miller threatened to infect other major US cities if his demands were not met. Following the deployment of the Marines and the National Guard, the infection was eradicated completely until the Air Dome Research Facility became another contamination zone. This site was also cleansed however due to the facility's internal anti-biohazard procedures.

Other isolated outbreaks occurred in other locations all over the world, such as Rockfort Island and the Umbrella Antarctic Base. The age of bioterrorism also opened the floodgates to countless other outbreaks throughout the globe, and others were caused accidentally such as the outbreak in India caused by the clinical testing conducted by WilPharma. Zombies are the most common by-product of a t-virus outbreak and as such, are dealt with carefully by state and local law enforcement and government agencies following the Raccoon City and Harvardville incidents. The B.S.A.A. maintains countermeasure instructions against zombies in paragraphs 13 to 17 of combat training file "t-15". 10


Once infected, humans will begin to mutate and several effects will take place. Firstly, the host's skin tissue begins to rot and blood congeals over the skin. Secondly, muscle fiber deteriorates and the virus destroys the subject's brain cells which contain memory completely, leaving zombies with no intelligence and shutting down all functions outside of the autonomic nervous system, leaving them with the complete paralysis of pain sensations. The virus causes a dramatic spike in metabolism, leaving it constantly activated. The result is a constant state of hunger and starvation, driving the zombie's only remaining instinct; to eat. Another result of this enhanced metabolism is immense strength and vitality, making zombies generally stronger than normal people despite the decay in muscle tissue. This metabolism is also the cause of the itching sensation reported by infectees prior to death. 

The most striking feature of a zombie is their insatiable hunger and ravenous behaviour, their primary method of attack is to feast upon the flesh of the living or dead. Human flesh is their primary food source, as it contains the high levels of energy necessary to sustain their tremendous metabolism. Highly acidic gastric acid is stored within the stomach in order to efficiently absorb consumed human flesh and can also be vomited to attack living humans.

They are virtually immortal, and can only be killed by being shot directly in the head. They are not deterred by inconsequential damage and will continue their search for food despite the loss of limbs or even the lower half of their body. Assuming they haven't degraded too much, some zombies can manage to quickly shuffle towards their prey faster than normal. Depending on the background of the zombie, such as the trainees on Rockfort Island, there are variations in the level of degradation of muscle tissue. They are highly resistant to fire, although dousing them completely in fuel or kerosene and setting them alight can kill them outright.

"Crawling zombies" is the term commonly associated with zombies whose muscle tissue has degenerated to the point where they cannot move by themselves, and have resorted to crawling along the ground to try and reach prey. They are similar to zombies that have had their legs or mid-sections blown off, so they are classified together. "Lying zombies" on the other hand are zombies that have no energy and are on the verge of death. These zombies in particular are the ones likely to enter the "Licker" transformation. "Playing dead zombies" are similar to lying zombies, but are actually not on the verge of death, merely waiting for prey to pass by before striking.

Zombies also maintain some visage of their former life due to their physical features, such as uniform, indicating their former occupations and even level of muscle degradation which can indicate their former level of fitness.


Crimson Head

If a zombie infected with a particular strain of the virus cultured from the "Crimson Head Prototype 1" is incapacitated through the likes of repeated gunfire, they will undergo the "V-ACT" process while in their incapacitated state and re-awaken as a "Crimson Head" some matter of time later. This mutation enhances them beyond their average abilities, making them far deadlier than normal. The only way to prevent this from occuring is by shooting them in the head, complete removal of the head or the complete incineration of the zombie.


Without an appropriate food source (human flesh), zombies will eventually resort to feasting on the flesh of other creatures and eventually, cannibalism. If this act does not sustain them or their food sources deplete, they will eventually die off, but there are a few whose cells will undergo an extreme mutation due to the t-virus. This mutation eventually leads to the birth of a new creature; the "Licker". It is believed that this mutation has some connection to the V-ACT process, but with an alternative outcome due to the strain of the virus used.


Researcher Zombie

These zombies are originally Umbrella researchers studying viruses who have since become infected with the viruses themselves. Primarily, they are present in almost every Umbrella facility which has become subject to contamination of the virus. In particular, these include the Arklay Research Facility and Umbrella Antarctic Base. 11 12

Forest Zombie

During the Mansion Incident, S.T.A.R.S. Alpha team member Forest Speyer was attacked and subsequently infected with the t-virus, becoming a zombie soon after.

Edward Zombie

After being attacked by monsters in Raccoon Forest on July 23 and ending up in the Ecliptic Express, Edward Dewey of the S.T.A.R.S. Bravo team succumbed to the effects of the t-virus and became a zombie, attacking Rebecca Chambers.

Naked Zombie

The term attributed to zombies used for t-virus research experiments, first documented in the Arklay Research Facility. They are easily distinguished by their naked appearance and distinct lack of deterioration in comparison to other zombies.

Town Zombie

The term applied to the citizens of Raccoon City during the t-virus outbreak. This type also includes many from outside of the city as well, as many residents from another town were present in the city for a football game at the time of the outbreak. 13

Police Zombie

The term used to describe officers of the Raccoon City Police Department who were infected with the t-virus during the Raccoon City incident. Their numbers are plentiful due to even off-duty officers being mobilized to quell the riots and chaos in the city. They are easily distinguishable by their summer uniforms. 14

Female Zombie

The term used for any female that has become a zombie.

Brad Zombie

After being attacked and killed by the Nemesis T- Type during the Raccoon city disaster, S.T.A.R.S. Alpha team member Brad Vickers turned into a zombie thanks to a highly active t-virus infection and wandered outside the RPD. 

Marvin Zombie

RPD officer Marvin Branagh suffered fatal injuries during a zombie attack on the precint a few days before meeting Leon S. Kennedy, after Leon finally reaches him for the second time, Marvin turns into a zombie in front of him.

Improved Zombie

Stronger zombies that are the products of weapons development testing in the underground research facility beneath Raccoon City. Similar to naked zombies but with higher levels of visible degradation. They are the base test subjects for the "Evolved Licker" B.O.W.

Prisoner Zombie

Prisoners on Rockfort Island's prison complex who were infected with the t-virus. They are distinguished from other zombies by their green prisoner uniforms and shaved heads. 15

Graveyard Zombie

Originally prisoners that were declared dead on Rockfort Island. Following the t-virus outbreak, rainwater helped the virus penetrate deep into the soil underground where they were buried, infecting the corpses and allowing them to mutate. 16

Doctor Zombie

Originally the anatomist who worked in the medical room of Rockfort Island prison. This particular specimen is faster and stronger than most other zombie types, for reasons unknown.

Wesker Subordinate Zombie

Members of the Hive/Host Capture Force that were infected with the air-transmitted t-virus on Rockfort Island. They are distinguished by their all-black combat uniform and often night-vision goggles. Some also have explosives strapped to their bodies.

Trainee Zombie

Originally trainees of Umbrella's Special Forces on Rockfort Island. Following the attack by H.C.F., they were infected with the air-transmitted t-virus or attacked by other infected creatures. They are generally stronger than normal zombies due to the lower level of muscle degradation thanks to their rigorous training. 17

Worker Zombie

Workers originally charged with sorting and storing cargo in the Umbrella Antarctic Base, infected after the planes from Rockfort Island crashed into the facility and leaked the t-virus. 18

Guard Zombie

Guards under the jurisdiction of the Ashford family that were infected with the t-virus on Rockfort Island. They provided security detail in the Ashford Palace and the prison complex. 19

Villager Zombie

These zombies were inhabitants of the waterside village, Mixcoatl. They were attacked and infected by the zombies and Piranha B.O.W. released by Javier. 20

Mercenary Zombie

Mercenaries originally hired by and working for Javier that were infected and turned into zombies. It's believed that in his madness, Javier intentionally infected them and created them on purpose. They were originally part of Javier's security force for his mansion. Some still carried explosives. 21

Javier Zombie

These zombies were originally people who stood against Javier that he captured and turned into zombies. He punished them and made examples of them by injecting them with the t-virus and having them serve as "guard dogs" for his mansion. Some were placed in an artificial state of suspended animation and administered a new t-virus variant capable of inducing the V-ACT process making them faster and more ferocious but lacking the claws present on a Crimson Head. They are generally kept on chains and shackles but when an enemy is in the vicinity, they are released. They were commonly utilized by Javier as weapons of terror. 22

Dam Worker Zombie

Workers who managed and maintained the Javier Dam that were infected after being washed away by the current after the water was released and subsequently attacked by Javier's zombies. 23


  1. 1. Zombie Notes
  2. 2. Biohazard 0 Kaitaishinsho ~ page 054
  3. 3. Biohazard Kaitaishinsho
  4. 4. Research On Biohazard 2 ~final edition~ ~ page 12 - 13
  5. 5. Biohazard 3 Last Escape Official Guidebook - Fulfilment Of Her Escape ~ page 138 & 148
  6. 6. Biohazard CODE: Veronica Kanzenban Kaitaishinsho ~ page 64, 66, 67
  7. 7. Biohazard Gun Survivor Official Guidebook ~ page 126
  8. 8. Resident Evil Archives ~ page 145 - 146
  9. 9. Wesker's Report II
  10. 10. BSAA t-Virus Description - "(for detailed countermeasures, refer to paragraphs 13 to 17 of combat training file "t-15")"
  11. 11. Resident Evil Archives ~ page 146
  12. 12. Researcher Zombie Notes
  13. 13. Town Zombie Notes
  14. 14. Police Zombie Notes
  15. 15. Prisoner Zombie Notes
  16. 16. Graveyard Zombie Notes
  17. 17. Trainee Zombie Notes
  18. 18. Worker Zombie Notes
  19. 19. Guard Zombie Notes
  20. 20. Villager Zombies Notes
  21. 21. Mercenary Zombie Notes
  22. 22. Javier Zombies Notes
  23. 23. Dam Worker Zombies Notes