Attack of the Sunday School Zombies Tech Support!

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Zombie Game Tips:

1. Yes, Pastor Bob is supposed to be floating off the floor in the sanctuary!
2. Fling donuts at the doors to open them. If it doesn't open, you may need to step back and try again.
3. At the end of the game when you're told to go clean the chocolate off of you, you must go into the men's bathroom.
4. Read all our game tips in our Study Guide & Worksheet
(3mb pdf)

Zombies Tech Support:

If suggestions on this page don't work, please email me with DETAILS of the problem and your computer. neil@sundaysoftware.com

If you encounter a problem, please check your system specs and minimums to make sure your hardware is up to snuff. You can do this by clicking START, then RUN, and typing "DXDIAG" to open Windows' DirectX Diagnostics. Click the 'save as text' option and email me that information, or, click the DISPLAY tab and write down the videochip brand/model, videodriver date, and amount of videoram and send it to me. I'll need complete details.

Make sure your video chip is good enough. Some Windows Me and early XP -era computers may have inferior video/3d capabilities. See my notes above about DXDIAG to learn more about your system. You can also learn more about videochips/ram at www.sundaysoftware.com/videocard.htm

Make sure your video chip's DRIVER is the latest version from the manufacturer. They update video drivers to solve problems. If your computer is more than 6 months old, odds are they have improved the driver. Run the DX Diagnostics program described above and read the date of your videodriver. Then....Go to the computer manufacturer's website and look up your computer in their drivers/download area. This is true EVEN FOR NEW COMPUTERS. It's not uncommon to receive a brand new computer which the manufacturer has ALREADY released a video driver update. Happened to me twice!


Reported Problems and their solutions:

After installation, the game engine ("acknex") crashes or stops working at the opening...

Try these things first:

1. RIGHT click the Desktop icon for Zombies and select "Run as Administrator".

2. Reinstall Zombies to a folder location of c:\zombies instead of the default c:\programs(86x) location (which seems to have some funky permission issues related to that folder).

In Vista or some versions of Windows 7, you may also have to use the Windows Compatibility tweak.  So....After you have installed Zombies to that Desktop folder, right click the Desktop Icon for Zombies that was installed  and select "properties" then "compatibility" and set it to "Run as in XP" to get Vista to chill-out. (you may also have to do this for the Start-Zombies.bat file in that folder). This step was not needed on our two Windows 8 test machines. Go figure.

If that doesn't help, then try the following more detailed solution --after deleting your old Zombies installation and deleting its Desktop icon.
1. Restart the Installation from the CD, but this time during installation/setup program, CHANGE the install directory to c:\zombies. You will see an option on the installer to 'change' the folder to this new one.
Why?  If you install it to the default location, Windows 7 assigns it to c:\program files(86)\zombies and the game will not run from that folder.
2. After installation to c:\zombies is complete, go into the c:\zombies folder and RIGHT click the file "START-ZOMBIES.bat" and select "EDIT". This will open the start file in Notepad text editor.
 
On the last line of that open file, delete the word "-diag". (In other words, the last line of the file should read "sanctuary.exe -d hardware"). 
 
3. SAVE the file and double click the START-ZOMBIES.bat file and enjoy your game!

If you have XP and have plenty of RAM and Videoram then consider this: The game opens with a video clip. It uses the Windows Media Player format (wmv). Crashing could be a sign of not enough video ram on your system. Or it could be that your version of Windows Media Player is way out of date.  Make sure you have a recent version of Media Player loaded on your computer. It's free from www.microsoft.com/windows/mediaplayer

One way to test and see if this really is the wmv videoclip crashing is to try and run the wmv clip APART FROM the game itself. To do this: "Explore" the Zombies files where they have installed on your harddrive (the default location is c:\zombies or c:\program files\zombies).   Locate a file with the extension ".wmv" and double click it. It should run. If not, upgrade your version as Windows Media Player as described above.


When opening the game, it won't open and it gives you an error message...

"3d compatible device not found" ...or some similar message. It means that your computer doesn't have a compatible or modern-enough videocard and you need to install one.

Other things you can do to workaround start up problems:

In XP, right click the Zombies desktop icon, then select "properties" then "compatibility" and set it to "Run as in Windows 98" ...this will tell XP to take things easy.

Pastor Bob is floating 6 feet above the pews in the Sanctuary:

He's supposed to! You can aim the donut flinger UP by either using pageup/pagedown or with your mouse. He will come down once Super Kenz has talked to him.

Sound Volume too low:

Press the ESC key and pull up the Zombies menu to adjust sound properties.  Note: Laptop sound is notoriously soft. We recommend playing Zombies with amplified computer speakers.

At end of game, I can't get all the zombies to go to sanctuary:

The game told you to go into the men's bathroom. Be sure you do!  This triggers a final setup for the last scene in the sanctuary.

I keep running out of donuts:

There are boxes all over the place. Go into one of the classrooms and load up. You might also check your game options menu to adjust level of difficult.


Do you have a partitioned harddrive and have problems with Zombies?

I recently installed Zombies on a brand new Vista Home Premium laptop and followed the instructions in the README file on the CD, and it still didn't run. Tried everything. Now... my laptop hard drive just happens to be partitioned into a "C" drive and a "D" drive. The C is for the operating system and main files, and the D drive part of the hard drive is labelled as "Data". I don't like that, but that's the way it came.  Not all hard drives come with "partitions" and generally speaking, I think partitions are annoying. And please note that most "D" drives are the label given to the DVD/CD drive. Not so on my laptop.  Realizing that Vista applies different security protocols to different parts of the system, I copied the entire Zombies folder from my Desktop (where I had installed it -per the readme file instructions) to the "D" partition on my laptop's hard drive. And guess what, Zombies started up fine from the D partition of the drive.  I didn't even need to "run as administrator" or set the compatibility option to "run as xp".  Who knows why. But Zombies worked from my "D" partition and not from the C side of my hard drive.   

I also uninstalled the Norton 360 security suite which came with the laptop. It was sticking it's tendrils into everything, and I don't trust that it's not blocking some functions from running, such that a game might want to call. I prefer to run AVG antivirus/malware program --the free edition, and let Windows Defender take care of other security needs.

Bottom line: get used to trying various tweaks with Vista.

Email me at neil@sundaysoftware.com

 

The Story Behind the Zombies CD
 
I've been teaching Sunday School and youth groups for nearly three decades. And in nearly every class or group, I've found it important to ANSWER "WHY" kids should want to come to church and Sunday School.  ...Because let's face it: worship and lessons aren't exactly fun things to do in the minds of our kids.
 
Our kids (and some adults) have a lot of complaints. They say "it's boring" or "I don't need to come in order to be a Christian." (see the list of zombie complaints above)  The typical answer of "because it's important" or "because I said so" isn't good enough. The answer needs to be grounded in scripture and delivered with creative insight. The answer also needs to come with suggestions kids can implement to make their experience come alive. Zombies CD does this.

I hope this game will begin to answer their complaints and give you plenty of opportunity to discuss "answers" to their important questions.

See my Zombies Study Guide for a list of all the verses and narrations used in the game. It will help you carry on the discussion after the game is over.

Why "Zombies" ?  
First... they're fun and make the game exciting.
Second... they are a metaphor for the way people sometimes mindlessly and boringly GO THROUGH THE MOTIONS at church and Sunday School. They also give Super Kenz the Bible Kid something to FLING AT. Kids love to shoot stuff in video games. In our Zombies CD, our hero flings donuts to get the Zombies to pay attention, and in doing so, your kids pay more attention too.
<>< Neil MacQueen, Sunday Software
 

Pictures from the Game...
  


The church looks nice, but some of the people there have been taken over by some bad attitudes and wrong-headed thinking.

Stopping Zombies from being Zombies takes a lot of donuts. Fortunately, the "Super Kenz Donut Flinger" is up to the task.



Super Kenz' is a kid of the 21st Century. When she needs some Bible verses to share with the Zombies, she whips out her "iTell-TheTruth" Bible computer, Model 7x70.

See all iTell verses in our study guide:
The Study Guide & Worksheet (3mb pdf)