“If I had known the world was ending, I would’ve brought better books.” –Dale, The Walking Dead But seeing as Dale was killed in season 2, he really should have regretted not bringing better weapons. Maybe you’re like the skeptical masses and don’t take the possibility of a zombie apocalypse seriously, but with biological warfare becoming more of a threat and political tensions growing higher every day, you have to admit that maybe, just maybe, all of these tv producers and novel writers are onto something here. In any case, it wouldn’t hurt you to take precautions, right? Better safe than soulless, we always say. But there are so many different types of defenses, it’s hard to know what exactly are the best ones for this type of unprecedented situation. To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of the absolute must have firearms and protections that you need to survive the zombie apocalypse and protect your family and friends. These are assuming that these are slow moving corpses that can be killed by being shot in the head like in most portrayals…if the actual apocalypse does come, and they are vicious, speedy, un-killable beings, then you should probably just hide. And pray.
#1- Assault rifle
This is number one for good reason. If a horde of zombies are coming at you, the only way you’re getting out of that scenario alive is if you can quickly fire powerful rounds, and the only way to do that is with a fully automatic assault rifle. Those are not accessible to the average citizen right now, but during the zombie apocalypse, all of the laws regarding civilians possessing fully automatic weapons should go out the window. Find yourself an M16 (superior accuracy) or an AK-103 (great durability) and you’ll be able to face that horde with confidence. You should also probably possess a semi automatic rifle now, just in case.
#2- Good Optic WITH Back-Up Iron Sights
To kill the zombies from a distance, you need an accurate shot—you don’t want to waste your precious ammunition and end up among the undead because you didn’t have the foresight to get a good optic. And you want to make absolutely sure you have BUIS; your gun is probably going to endure some harsh fights and conditions, and who knows how long you will be fighting the zombies and when your battery will fail. You’re going to be doing more surviving than maintenance, so this is key. Read our blog post about which optics are best to get here.
While rifles are best for accuracy and range, during the zombie apocalypse it is completely crucial to be carrying something on you, at your side and ready for action, at all times, which is where a pistol proves worthy to be added to the list. It has to pack enough power to penetrate the skulls and get to their brains, have high reload speed, be light to carry, and incur low recoil. High capacity magazines would be preferable, and the handgun should also have a tactical rail on which to mount a flashlight (to see the zombies in dark warehouses or at night). Glocks (17, 34, 22) are probably your best bet when you consider all of these factors, but there are other options, including the Springfield Armory XD(M)s and the more expensive 1911s.
#4- Lots of Ammo
This one is self-explanatory; the definition of “apocalypse” means that things have gotten to a point where there are more zombies than people, and they are going to come for you. If you want to kill lots of zombies, you need a steady supply of ammo. But what kind? Well realistically, if you don’t stock up before it happens, you may not get to choose— 9mms will probably be the easiest to find—but if you do get a selection, choose hollow-point projectiles, which are high energy and include cavities in the tips that make them expand upon impact. They inflict larger wound areas and will penetrate only the zombie, so you don’t risk killing your other human allies who may be fighting in the thick of it alongside you. Also, aim for a bigger caliber; larger bullets= more serious damage+ a better chance of hitting the zombie.
Some encounters with zombies in this new era will likely be one-on-one, in which case you won’t want to alert its friends nearby when you blow its head off (zombies’ best known ability is hearing sounds). Right now, suppressors can be purchased as long as you have the right paperwork, so this is one of the items on this list you can go ahead and add to your weapons stockpile before the zombies take over. Obtaining a good silencer, such as Dead Air Silencers’ Ghost-M, the SureFire Ryder 9M, or the Yankee Hill Machine Nitro (which are all light and versatile) can mean the difference between escape and defeat.
You may find yourself in a terrifying situation where the zombies are too close to you to get a clear shot, in which case, you are in big trouble if you don’t have another form of self-defense. This is where a good knife or five comes in handy. Luckily for you, some smart people have already created a line of cutlery that is specifically built to withstand anything the zombies can dish out but still functions for other uses, so you can start familiarizing yourself with them now, and feel prepared for whenever the zombie apocalypse does happen. It includes everything from throwing knives (for when there are multiple zombies chasing you), machetes (for the bigger corpses), and pocket knives (for concealment). See them here.
#7- Samurai Sword/Katana
Michonne from The Walking Dead demonstrated that this unconventional weapon is a necessity if you want to stand apart in the new world order as a ruthless zombie killer. A katana (which is a type of samurai sword) is a curved, lightweight blade that has a long grip, and possesses great sharpness and strength as well as style. Useful for slaying and cutting up the zombies with a unique flair. Until the zombie apocalypse, it can hang in your house as a nice cultural decoration without arousing too much notice. Hopefully this list gives you a better idea of what you need to be prepared for the possible impending doom. What weapons do you think are most useful for fighting off zombies? Comment below!