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G&A Exclusive: An Inside Look at Hornady Zombie Max Ammo

by Ben OBrien   |  October 14th, 2011 164

Welcome to the first ever post of G&A’s Zombie Nation. We’re dedicated to ridding the world of future pus-filled wanderers and preventing the bloody apocalypse that is undoubtedly on the horizon.

So, when the zombie horde is forming and you’re helpless against their blood lust, don’t say we didn’t warn you. This is G&A’s clearinghouse for tips, tactics and gear for zombie defense. We’ll be exploring the history of the walking dead and their underpinnings in today’s popular culture, highlighting guns and gear designed to aid our fight and putting our bug-out bags together….just in case.

First up is a Zombie Nation exclusive look at Hornady Zombie Max ammo (Z-Max). The marketing department at Hornady has put together quite a show in the early announcements of their newest brainchild. Here’s the official line on the ammo:

Be PREPARED – supply yourself for the Zombie Apocalypse with Zombie Max ammunition from Hornady Loaded with PROVEN Z-Max™ bullets… yes, PROVEN Z-Max™ bullets.

This stuff is live ammo, it’s no toy or Halloween gimmick.  Here’s the caliber rundown:

  • 9MM Luger 115 gr. (25-count box)
  • 40 S&W 165 gr. (20-count box)
  • 45 Auto 185 gr.(20-count box)
  • .223 Rem. 55 gr.(20-count box)
  • 7.62×39 123 gr. (20-count box)
  • .308 Win 168 gr. (20-count box)
  • 12 Gauge 00 Buck Shot (10-count box)

As the buzz spreads across the Web about Z-Max, I caught up with the man behind the shooting industry’s first ammo designed to dispatch the undead, President of Hornady Manufacturing Steve Hornady, to get an inside look at what’s sure to be the new craze.

Ben O’Brien: Who do you expect will be the core buyer for Zombie Max?

Steve Hornady: Well, anyone and everyone who’s worried they won’t be adequately prepared when it happens in their neighborhood.

BO: How did this awesome idea come about?

SH: I’ve seen several of the documentaries and read the history books (e.g Dawn of the Dead, World War Z etc.), which is when I learned of this threat and realized we weren’t really prepared. I felt we had a civic duty to our customers, our nation, nay simply the living, to offer the most effective ammunition we could develop.

BO: Any suggestions for zombie hunters out there as to how the ammo is most effectively used to kill the walking dead?

SH: Well, head shots or brain stem are the only effective shots on Zed so we focused on rapid fire quick recovery rounds. There was considerable debate about the shotgun round since, in my opinion, accurate shot placement is important. If Zed is close enough to reliably hit the brain with a shotgun then your situation may be dire indeed, and shotgun ammo is heavy, so you simply cannot carry as much as you will need. However, ultimately, I was convinced that for many shooters this may be their only rapid response firearm, at least initially.

BO: Describe the “testing” process for Z-MAX and how it came to be dubbed “proven.”

SH: Well, first we used our historical expertise in designing bullets after analyzing just what would be the objective. Field testing has proven we were right. After all you can’t find any walking dead now can you?

BO: What are the effective zombie-killing ranges for the handgun offerings? How about the .223 and .308?

SH: For the handgun rounds as well as the rifle rounds we wanted a fairly lightweight, high velocity round. After all, speed kills and in the case of Zombies, you can’t always assume there will always be enough decayed flesh or bone to reliably expand a heavier or slower bullet. That said, I personally recommend taking the shot at the maximum distance you can reliably place the shot where it is known to be effective. Rifles definitely offer a significant advantage here, and I strongly advocate noise suppressors as it is well known Zed is attracted to noise, and if it starts to moan it will only attract more. Be prepared, be very prepared. Have a lot of ammo and have an exit plan. As you can see from some of the documentary films, many living were, mmm, converted because they weren’t ready and couldn’t get out before the horde became insurmountable.

BO: Will there be any future enhancements of the line, say Werewolf, alien or vampire skews?

SH: C’mon Ben, everyone knows those are fictional characters.

So, will you be heading out to your local retailer to pick up a box? What’s your caliber of choice?

  • Tim

    I want this ammo!

  • Frank


  • Shootin' Ugli

    Those looked like Hollywood rounds to me. 'seen 'em on Mythbusters.

    • watson

      no dip sherlock



  • Ken Smith

    There are no testing comments on Guns and Ammo! Come on! This place is only for the Darwins of the world! Survival of the Fittest!

  • Eric R. Poole

    Good work Hornady. Way to get in front of the Zombie Apocalypse! You guys need to have those who make your sighting-in targets to make some Zombie targets to go with this ammo!

    • Eric Clough has great selection of targets

  • LC

    .22 LR is my round of choice with Zed. Surprising that it’s not included in their line up…

    • Shane

      well duh they dont want to waste there time on lil girl guns! lol step ya game up

      • Zed Hunter

        Dude I'm with LC, there is no such thing as knock down power when talking about a Zed. A .22LR will be just as effective as a .45 as long as it is a headshot. Now with that being said the .22LR is best because of it's light weight, low cost, low recoil, higher capacity, and it is relatively quiter than other pistol rounds. Add a suppressor and laser to your piece and you got yourself a zombie ninja assasin weapon. Trust me I know all about Zeds and tactics. I study this stuff like it is my degree.

        • Jason

          I hope there is some sarcasm there.

          • rexpointe

            I imagine there is about the same amount of sarcasm in Zed Hunter's comment as there is in Hornady's claims about field testing and the rest of it. However, his comment that a .22 LR is as effective as a .45 is absolutely correct, within the realm of Zombieland.

            But seriously, as a gimmick this is fine for folks who are comfortable with paying $1 per round of Hornady Zed ammo. Me, I'm willing to bet my current cheap ammo is just as effective as Hornady's Zombie rounds and I'm willing to prove it as soon as Hornady finds anymore Zombies to submit for testing. :o) Until then, I'll let the rest of you pay ridiculous prices for common ammunition.

    • Jeremy

      Actually I'm thinking the .22WMR myself. Hornady definitely needs some Zombiemax in that caliber. It's got just enough power to get the job done out to 100yds or so, and it's small & light enough so that you can carry A HELL OF A LOT of it!!!! What do you think? A couple Kel-tec PMR-30's & a RMR-30 to go with them?

    • Drago

      Yeah he even mentions how shotgun ammo is too heavy to carry enough. I will take my Amphibian Ruger with trijicon and get moving :)

  • Jim

    Some ad. departments do get carried away. Great attention getter but what is really for

    • kinganuthin

      for removing brains from skulls.. duh

    • borly

      What are you doing here?

  • Dale Bailey

    Eric R. Poole the targets you mentioned are already available,check out S.G.

    • Eric R. Poole

      Sweet. Thanks for the intel Dale!


  • Brian J.

    Great job by Hornady Marketing!
    Now if my local stores would stock this stuff instead of saying "I haven't heard of or seen this product yet"…
    I'd be a happy man.
    remember, It's only successful marketing if you can get it into the consumers hands!

    • noname

      if you're around a gander mountain we carry it. call the store ahead of time because i know my store only carries 9mm, .380 and 12 ga right now(:

  • Nikk

    zombies? pretty sure politicians will bring the apocolypse..if only we had some rounds that work on them…

    • thorkyl

      We do, its called penicillin filled hollow points.
      They will cure any disease that they have

  • Mr. Bill

    Most rounds will work on the politicians, their weiners anyway, a hard ab punch will do most of them in. Save the ammo for the real dangerous needs . Want some entertainment??, grab a politician and hold them in front of you , they'll squeal like a PIG and what FUN that will be!!

  • mike51392

    mr. bill, yeah buddy ! i hear ya – anyways hornady what the F ! what about us six gun lovers – no luv for .357mag

  • Bob

    Can Hornady get FN to load some 5.7 X 28 stuff for Zombies?

    • Jed D Row

      I wish they would make a bunch more guns in 5.7. maybe a lil Ruger 10-5.7 or a wheel pistol. maybe a Kel Tec. Something to increase the demand for this insanely good round.

  • Izzy

    Brilliant move, like the Kabar ZK knives this is a great way to acquire new fans. Ill be picking up some of these babies!

  • Deja

    I wish they had this ammo in revolver rounds such as 357 magnum, 44 magnum, 38 special and of course 500 mag!

  • Atticaz

    Aren’t these just the same as V-Max rounds. Just green instead of red?

  • really?

    Very unprofessional of them to create and advertise the ammo as such.
    Live rounds are not to be treated as toys.

    I carry hornady critical defense in my carry pistol. I will switch to something else and will not buy hornady products anymore.
    Bad move from hornady hope they realize products like these can only lower their product niche.

    • Cody Young

      seriously? You'll stop purchasing Hornaday products because they're cashing in on a current marketing trend? Regardless of what ammo it is, it's good to know that a large corporation still has a sense of humor.

      Hey jackass, I don't know if you got the memo, but shooting is FUN. It's the being shot AT that sucks. Thankfully Zed doesn't shoot back.

    • Ken Smith

      Really? You must be some old dude with no sense of having fun! Hornady is one of the best ammo makers in the business.

    • Adrian

      Well have fun buying inferior rounds hornady makes some world classs ammo. Really thinking bout buying a box of each caliber i own just in case.

    • kinganuthin

      you really shouldnt take yourself so seriously. No one else does.

    • Patrick


    • Scott

      I will also NEVER buy a product from hornady again. This seems really immature and unprofessional to me. My disgust for this company began when they started selling steel ammo at prices higher than lead/brass ammo.

      • Ken A

        That steel ammo is loaded with "match grade" bullets at a much lower price than brass cases with match grade bullets. Fine for people who do not reload and still want quality ammo.

    • Hornady shooter

      All their ads say liav ammo not a toy YOU are the unprofessional I carry hornady in my hand guns as well as shoot it in my rifles they make top notch ammo go buy the inferior stuff and I hope none of it blows up in your face.. I have shot several thousands of hornady ammo through my guns NEVER had a failure… Hey hornady you going to make it in 44 mag???? I HOPE SO

    • phoenix708

      Give me a break. It is just marketing. You are being way too critical of their advertising. Kids can't buy ammo. You have to be 18. If you are over 18 and take this seriously then you have a gene defect. Enough said.

    • Hornady guy

      Your a nut job… Hornady rules u won't be missed

    • RedNeckChris


      Get a grip man. Hornady in no way encourages anyone to treat their zombie line of ammo any differently than the rest of their ammo.
      And unless they're in the chamber of a functioning firearm, live rounds really aren't much more dangerous than a lot of toys.

      So relax dude, and think about giving Hornady another chance.

    • Brian

      I don't know about changing my other ammo or refusing to buy more Hornady ammo, but this is a bad idea with plenty of room for BS from the media or prosecutors around the country. Plinking with this would be fine, but I would never keep this as actual self-defense ammo. Imagine explaining the use of "zombie ammo" to a jury. Let us not forget the BS from the black talon scare. They changed the name and lost the magical black coating and the BS went away. Never underestimate the stupidity of the media or a D-bag with an agenda. This sort of thing plays right into their brain-dead (zombie?) hands. Good shooting. – B

    • John

      I'm a fan of Hornady as well, but I agree that this "zombie" nonsense devalues their brand. Firearms are for fun and for self defense, but they are not toys. When a company markets "zombie" ammunition, it's hard to take their other products seriously.

    • david r.

      you wanna bottle and a fresh diaper change there buddy?

    • Ken A

      Lighten up buddy. I ordered some just to have some variety of colors in my bullet tips. Zombies may be movie creations now, but with the genetically mutated foods that we are now being fed, Zombies may be in our future.

    • STLstudent

      Sounds like one of the crabby, ill-humored old men that populate every gun club.

  • DanJ

    I'm saddened to see Hornady stooping to such levels. Such brazen marketing strategies are a sad testament to what our society has become today: self-loathing bigoted racists bent on extermination of our worldly resources.

    Zombies were people too, and should be afforded all the opportunities that other inhumans are. Just because they don't have a Political Action Committee, a pool of big-money donors, or a coherent voice of their own doesn't mean we cannot live peacefully with these poor, misunderstood creatures.

    While I'm happy Hornady is giving exposure to the Zombie Nation, I do wish it were done in a more constructive manner. After all, when the Zompocalypse comes, you can be rest assured they'll take their vengeance. I, for one, will welcome our new fetid overlords!

    • kinganuthin

      thumbs up! .. read it people..

    • Zombie Logic

      finally, somoene with sense of humor!

    • Hornady guy

      Haha nice!!

    • Douchebag dan

      Hey guy, these are zombies your talking about! Dead, mindless, rotting Zombies. Are you that much of an idiot or are you just ignorant. I hope they come and get you first so we can all watch you suffer.

  • Mark

    to really?
    Did you read the ads!!! Every ad I have seen plus the email I got about it from Hornady says in plain english that these are not toys, they are live ammo and should be treated as such!!! I too carry Hornady Critical Defense in my handguns and will continue to do so!!!
    Yea Hornady!!! Awesome idea and funny as Hell too!!! Will be ordering me some of these real soon!!!

    • rexpointe

      I certainly am willing to go along with the Z-Max joke and I agree this is a great marketing ploy on Hornady's part, but when you point out that every ad clearly states "this is live ammo and should be treated as such" I would point out that's not all the ads say.

      They also say:
      "But please note, Hornady Zombie Max ammunition is not a toy. It is intended only to be used on zombies, also known as the living dead, undead, etc. No human being, plant, animal, vegetable or mineral should ever be shot with Zombie Max ammunition."

      When you combine an actual, serious warning followed by several lines of fantasy nonsense, it could be argued that you are blurring or reducing the impact of the factual part of the statement. Now, I don't have an serious objection to this "being all in fun", but if one were to take Hornady's admonition that Zombie Max ammo is ONLY to be used on Zombies, then it would suggest you shouldn't even test fire the ammo at paper targets, since paper is derived from "plants" (i.e. trees).

      • kinganuthin

        if someone is that stupid to be confused actually owns a firearm, the Zombie ammo they might buy is the least of the problems.

        • rexpointe

          In a society where the law requires warning labels to tell people ammo is dangerous and drive thru coffee is "hot" you're going to rag on me about stupid. Pal, the people of this society are so far past stupid it isn't even funny. Need proof, look at the brainless lying morons that are elected to steal our money and rob us of our freedom.

          But Hornady marketers haven't underestimated the stupidity of their customers by charging $1.25 per round for simple .223 Rem 55 gr FMJ ammo with a green painted tip. But if the novelty of Zombie ammo is enough to float your boat… then enjoy the joke.

      • BDozer

        I agree, you read between the lines and its a great safety message! It is simply just a marketing tool, but a great one! I mean, look how many people in this blog who are going to buy this type of ammo because the word "zombie" is written on the box lol not saying at all its a bad round, but you get the idea. Money in the bank for Hornady! Good laugh, glad others think so to :), id buy some just for the fun it. After all… ammo's ammo!

        • Holly-Brandon Duck

          Yeah! and the same round "z max's" are the same price. It is a great varmit round!!! I just like the novelty and the green tip is cool to me. I will continue to assasinate yote's with this round, just until the zombies do come!!!LOL!! I think its pretty neat and I am going to buy for 223, 40, and 45. Hornady is one of my top preferences for rounds and I'm starting on my stock right now!!!!

  • thorkyl

    I want some, just to have as a collectors item

  • Antonio

    Dude, that's an awesome video.

    I have Hornady 125 grain 357 magnum ammo (XTP, I think) that exit the barrel at like 1500 fps. That's as prepared as I need to be!

  • rexpointe

    I'm surprised nobody has commented on the cost of this ammo. A $1.23 per round of .223 Rem is pretty steep. As far as I can tell there are no specifics on the bullets' design to justify such a premium cost. In fact, in spite of their claim that Zombie Max is "proven" how do we know it's any better than cheap XM193 rounds.

    Hopefully when the product becomes available in stores or online it will be more reasonably priced vs the MSRP listed on Hornady's website.



    • rexpointe

      Are you saying you are going to defy Hornady's admonition about not using this ammo on anything but Zombies? Or is your neighborhood overpopulated with the walking dead?

      If you do shoot the ammo, don't discard the boxes. Who knows, there may be a market for re-loaded Zombie ammo as well.

      But seriously, if this ammo really appeals to you… then great. Buy it, sell it, shoot it and have a good time! Just remember… head shots only. ;o)

    • Doubltap

      Actually this seems to be plain old Critical defense ammo in a brass /vs/ nickel case, with a green /vs/ red plastic insert. If you look at the external ballistics, they are essentially the same.

  • Jon Pruitt

    What I want to know is why is there no 7.62x54R ammo.

    • Rykko

      REALLY!!! THAT is all you want to know? Talk about an outdadted caliber. Sure, I own a Nagant. Its like 6 feet long and requires stripper clips. It's LOUD AS HE** , & has a nice kick……plus its bolt action.

      Not a weapon for "on the move" zombie defense.

      And how can anyone say that "a .22 is just as effective as a .45 on a zombie?". Do you people understand ballistics? Have YOU ever shot two Zombies and two ALIVE people in the head, each with a .22 & a.45? I doubt it. You guys are morons & will be right next to the guy who counts on a Kel-Tec for a life saving situation. All of you will be the first to be turned into Zed yourselves!

    • Leadslinger_67

      May seem outadted biy it pack a good wallop, i was wondring that myself, I love the one i have…….

    • Michael Waite

      He said that bigger heavier rounds could not be guaranteed to expand in decayed flesh, as it would have more "give". But seriously, if that's your "go to" gun in any situation, my prayers with you brother, you're going to need them. Yes I own one.

    • lewjew

      dont need it in a 54r. Nagant will work just fine with the fmj surplus
      long range, damn accurate, forced trigger discipline, whats not to like?
      also comes in dragurnov flavor

  • VA is for Shooters.

    I think it's great, I already have an order in for a box of 9mm, 12ga, and 223( Comes out in Nov). There are warnings all over it saying its not a toy and that it's live ammuntion so everyone can calm down on that front. Only thing that would worry me is that some one using this as a personal protection round would likely get burned at the stake since in the warnings it says not to be used on human beings, plants, etc. Lawyers would have a field day with that. That being the only downside, I still hope to wake up to a Zombie Apocalypse every morning, just hope it waits till I get my Z-max ammo!

    Keep Shooting. Be Safe.

  • Timothy M. Lewis

    This goes far beyond a joke or having fun. Hornady hasn't created a fictional product and ad campaign, this is an actual product line. Also, Guns & Ammo is publishing articles along the same subject treating the existence of zombies as reality. What is worse, though, is the lack of disappointment in these comments. Responsible gun owners and the Second Ammendment itself come under enough attack as it is. Now, a top ammunition manufacturer and shooting magazine are trying to cash in on on the cultural popularity of zombies, but at what expense? Why stop there? Why not a line of silver bullets for werewolves? Garlic pepper spray to protect women from vampire rapists? Incendiary rounds to stop mummies? Way to undermine the cause and make us all look like a bunch of delusional morons.

    Yes, shooting is fun, but our right to bear arms is no joking matter.

    • Merlin

      You know why Angels fly? Because they take themselves lightly!. Give it a rest. If you don't understand tounge-in-cheek humor, don't say anything at all. It's a MARKETING strategy. Christ, I get tired of some of you.

    • Mongo1

      Jeees, get a grip will yah. I want some of this stuff, just like I bought a bunch of John Wayne ammo. All of the shooters I know don't sit and fret about the Constitution, Agenda 21, etc. They have a sense of humor and enjoy inovation in the shooting industry.

    • Fred G Sanford

      you BIG DUMMY!!!!!!

    • bryan

      Silly Timothy, everyone knows werewolves and vampires only want to date our teen girls. They're not really a threat, unless you are the father to a teenage girl. Then I would recommend Hornaday's personal defense branded ammo.

    • Michael Waite

      And say what you will about the zombie sub culture that has cropped up, but you're not looking at it from a practical point of view. While we all know zombies don't exist (can't, really) if you read even one novel or see one movie, the lesson you need to take away from this is "Be Prepared". That goes double for gun rights, because in all the novels, what's the common theme? They all have guns. Use your head.

  • Glock36

    I am the business manager at a local Doctor's Office. Our office currently has a Zombie Apocalypse Response Plan. We have helicopters standing by to airlift our loved ones, or favorite Indian food Restaurant, and our favorite Sno-Cone Stand to a safe compound.

    We thought we were ready. We were wrong.

    Now, we must have millions of rounds of this ammo in various calibers.

    You must increase production at once. Also, I'm a fan of the much maligned 10mm. Will there be a 10mm 200 grain round available in the near future. It better be the NEAR future since this could happen at any second

    • Zombie Logic

      10mm fan here also!! seems its so hard to find people who love this caliber. I would LOVE for more 10mm variety, and would also like to see this ammo in 5.56mmx45mm.
      NO, 223 is NOT the same!

  • Hersfelder

    I just hope no half-wit shoots somebody with some of this ammo and uses the "I thought it was a Zombie" defense in court. If so, then, watch the lawyers come out of the woodwork to sue Hornady….sad days these…….

    • Zombie Logic

      Read my reply to PAM

    • Michael Waite

      Yeah, cause having a laugh in these miserable times when good Americans let things like the Patriot Act I AND II pass without so much as a whimper, THAT'S what makes these days sad….

  • WerkinHard

    Sense of humor/joke aspect of this product was a very, very distant second to the number one slot: Will this make us money? As with any new product a whole team of people researched the idea, cost analysis, risk analysis, budgets, break even points etc. Then some yahoo got up in front of the senior leadership of Hornady and presented their findings: We believe with a 80% probability this will sell! People will part with their cash to buy this product! And some CEO type said, "OK!" He may have even found it amusing. But the humor was a after thought before the profit results. Their legal department probably took a good long look at this before it got the final OK.
    I think it is mildly amusing.
    So they are looking to cash in on the Zombie craze? Ok, good for them. Will I buy it, probably not. Cannot justify that cost for a gimmick in this economy.

  • Duff

    Wow that is completely lame. I agree with the author of Perhaps Hornady should read whats on their homepage.

  • Bobaloushagnasty

    A well placed FMJ to the head in all but a few centerfire calibers is sufficient to stop Zed dead in his tracks. .223 or 7.62 ammo is readily available, cheap enough to stockpile, reliable, lightweight and available in many platforms.

  • Jim I

    WHY ????

  • PAM

    I am in total agreement with MR Lewis……."Responsible gun owners and the Second Ammendment itself come under enough attack as it is. Now, a top ammunition manufacturer and shooting magazine are trying to cash in on on the cultural popularity of zombies, but at what expense?" We (all gun owners) need to create a positive view on firearm ownership and use, this ZOMBIE crap will only inflate the negative attitudes of the nongunners against all of us. Second thought would be if one where to use a ZOMBIE load in a selfdefence shooting, I can see the local media and DA painting the shoter as a sicko!

    • Zombie Logic 1 of 2

      My 1st reaction to the name of this ammo was "wow COOL!!". Then came my reasoning thinking…. From Logical/Legal view: I asked myself what complications and/or legal trouble would I be placing myself into if I WERE to actually use my gun for defense while loaded with THIS ammo.

    • Zombie Logic 2 of 2

      The scary thought is: The maufacturer clearly states NOT to use it on humans/people, and even animals. So what legal glue woould the ACLU lay on me if I were to actually kill someone in a "good" "legal" shooting, such as self defence or the defence of another? Do you remember the "evil" Black Talons? The ACLU had a field-day accusing the LAPD that they were being racist to use BLACK bullets to shoot at BLACK people. The mfg. stopped the BLACK TALON and replaced it with a fancier version of the SXT.
      I LOVE all things zombie, I own several books on that subject and even have an email relating to this subject, So please don't get me wrong, I DO HAVE A SENSE OF HUMOR!!! And in addition to this, I agree with Pat, that using ammunition that states to NOT be used on humans or people, would cause some if not GREAT, concern for the CCW daily carrier or home defense person.

      • Zombie Logic

        its spelled DEFENSE, you MORON!!
        only 1 "O" in WOULD!

    • Michael Waite

      Cause us gun lovers having .50 cal Barrett sniper rifles capable of defeating light armor (read: Not military grade) in no way causes people to worry….

      1. Would you care to explain to me how they are going to know it's Zombie Max ammo you used? If it's a clean shoot, it's not likely they'll pull the bullet, but even if they did, any characteristics (i.e. the green tip) would likely have destroyed itself, so that leaves you the shooter to explain…what? That you have .223 ammo (or whatever caliber) in your magazine, x number of shots were fired, y number of shots hit and z (see what I did there) number of shots missed. Most people don't even know what this stuff is, and even if they did, they know it's re purposed Defense ammo. Not a big deal.
      2. Why do you even have it loaded in your weapon to begin with? What, you were at the range and dun plumb forgot to pick up another box of frangible rounds and that is what you had? Even if that were the case, and it's a legitimate shoot, what exactly would you have to worry about? It's a legitimate shoot, either they killed you or you killed them. At worst you're 5 mins on the local news.
      3. There is no positive view on firearm ownership, really. Guns are tools, but they have the distinction of being the only tool designed expressly to kill someone or something. Shovels weren't designed for that, neither were chainsaws, although either could be used to kill someone. However, my Model 37 .357 Mag S&W cannot hammer a nail (well, not conventionally), turn a screw or loosen a bolt. But it mostly certainly can kill, and in fact, that's what it was designed to do.

      Before you get your panties in a wad, I own several hand guns and a couple of long guns. I was in the military and a war vet (but not a serious one, Op Shield/Storm), and I am most CERTAINLY a believer in the 2nd Amendment. But I am also a realist and pragmatic. I didn't go buy 1000's of rounds and as many guns as I could when Obama was elected, because I knew nothing was going to happen…and I was right.

      So just sit back, relax, have a tasty beverage and a chuckle, cause this is just one amusing moment.

    • Lil Ed

      Bull crackers… The anti-2nd Amendment, anti-freedom crowd does not care. They are against us. Having (or not having) Zombie ammo will not make one bit of difference. We spend too much energy worrying about those who hate us and will eventually move to confiscate our firearms. Prepare for the conflict. It's coming.

  • Jeff

    C’mon Ben, everyone knows those are fictional characters…..LOL!!! And zombies arent??? Do people really believe this hollywood crap?! I swear our movies get people running scared of everything in this country! And if there really ever were so called zombies walking around your typicall hunting round would do just fine. Come on folks, steve hornady like all other manufactures want your money! Creating zombie ammunition is the perfect marketing idea to take your money! And as long as there are thousands of people living thier lives in fear of this zombie nonsence, steve hornady becomes richer! By the way, i am an avid gun collector and daily shooter just so folks who read this wont think these words are coming from your typical liberal.

    • Alienhumanoid

      Hey dude, you're awesome.

  • DockScience

    I can only imagine the trouble this joke will cause when the first home invasion defense trial (in a blue state) where the homeowner uses these rounds on some thug threatening his/her family.

    Personally, I think they should be called "butterfly kisses" in blue states. Much less threatening for the jury of Obama voters.

    • Alienhumanoid

      Hey dude, you're awesome too. Lol.

  • Dr. Jim

    Anyone who objects to this ammo needs to see a proctologist to have their head removed from their rectum.

  • experienced 11yr.old

    hell, the only caliber they really need is a 7.62×39. there is more sks's and ak 47's than anything else. its a meat grinding round and it will make a hole the size of a quarter in a zombies head. If their is one pistol round they need it is the 357 mag. Enough power, accuracy, and speed to take a zombie down.

  • ryan c

    its a marketing ploy and a damn good one to i applaud hornady for doing it to there cool to have as a collectors item and yea they can charge what ever they want for them if you like the cheap stuff that blows up in your face or jams you have bigger things to worry about like getting knifed when your gun craps out plus these are good self defense rounds and there responsible with there marketing and warning labels why be angry i got some in 40 and they work great i sure wouldnt change a thing

  • USP40c

    What makes them great self defense rounds? I haven't been able to find any ballistics data on these bullets, not even on Hornady's web site.

    • Ron

      The 12ga 2 3/4" rounds 8 pellets leave the muzzle at 1600'fps and drops to 1274 fps at 40 yds

  • Zombie Logicv

    Here is another zombie ammunition idea: PLace green LED (Light Emmiting Diod) inside the hollow point , that way you can SEE where you hit at night, follow the light if the zombie keeps walking.

  • Zombie Logic

    I mis-spelled MY OWN username!! LOL
    Note to self: Get a life instead of reading blogs at 2 A.M.!!

  • Zombie Logic

    I am so smart!
    I am so smart!

    I mean…S, M,A,R,T.

  • Alien

    What the hell are all you badasses talking about? Its just ammo with a name. Big deal. If you don't like it then don't buy it. Obviously it is to make money. What business don't want to make money? Oh, wait, the kind that are bankrupt. I cannot believe some of you people are so stupid to take it so serious. There is nothing that anyone can sue them for because its a just aa bullet. The judiciary system don't give a damn if it was for "zombies " or deer. You just killed someone and the damn thing is not going to have a sign on it after it's fired. Wow, some people need to calm down and enjoy life and not be such an ass. I personally spent over $300 on this ammo. Three boxes of different calibers that I own. I plan to shoot one carry one and store the other for fun to show and tell. I am fully aware zombies aren't real right now and don't need some jackass to tell me that. Plus I have plenty of stock piled ammo that will work for zombies. I don't care to spend the money. I went to college and got a high paying job, so I'll take 15 boxes bitch.

  • Scrounger

    Zombie Max and Critical Defense ammo are one and the same… for the color of the plastic flex tip. As soon as the gun control freaks start hammering Hornady, they'll pull the ammo and make it rare…… Winchester did with Black Talon some years back. Yes, it's a gimmick. So what?

  • point man

    A land of freedom and of choice. If this floats your boat buy it if not pass it over. No one is forcing anything on you so go plink with your cheap stuff and let us big boys enjoy. Step up or step out.

  • Mark W.

    Personally I'll stick with a tried and true 150 grain Spire Point sitting on top of 48 grains of IMR 4895. inside a 30-06 case chambered in a M1 Garand.

    And if I want something lighter to pack around. I'll go with a 90 grain Hornady HP sitting on top of some IMR 4227 in a .30M1 case. I can easy pack around 20+ loaded 15rd mags for the Carbine.

  • Doughboy

    Just for everyone's info. I bought the last visible available box of this Hornady Z Max stuff at the big Phoenix gun show today. (12/4) 25 RDS for $16. It was the ONLY new 9mm in 115grain HP. No Factory New +P- HP ammo could be found for that 9mm bullet weight??? Plenty of 124 & 147 grain available. The bright green box caught my eye. To me, it looks like a standard Hornady XTP pistol bullet with the HP cavity filled with a lime green ballistic plastic. I'll put the zombie loads through a Beretta 92F for a spin test at the range.

  • Paul

    GAY. Totally GAY. The imagination of people who have bought "cool guns" but have not bought any ammo. Probably won't buy any ammo, and would throw down even a loaded gun and piss themselves while running away from a fight of any sort.

  • craig

    trying to find some of this for my business partners birthday gift where the heck can you buy it?

    • Paul

      GRAFS and Sons

    • Johnny Kong

      Bass Pro Shops has just started carrying it… just call to make sure it is stock first as it goes fast. I paid $17.49 /box for 9mm at their SoCal store Rancho Cucamonga. 909.922.5500 It was about $2 or $3 cheaper than their Hornady Critical Defense. As far as cartridge comparison goes these are the SAME thing as Critical Defense but with plain brass (no nickel casing) and green FTX (instead of red). So load up with thrifty confidence!!! ;o)

    • mkawbrown
  • DeputyC

    I hesitate to comment on this one… First off let me say that this stuff is the coolest thing I've seen in a month of Sundays and I will get lots of it in many calibers. It will make great gifts for all of my shoooting buddies. Now that I've made my stance clear I have to say that Hornady is taking a risk. Many of their customers will find this stuff juvenile. They are a reputable company that is know for superior product, and this may look like a departure from their serious pursuit of perfection. I will not boycott Hornady, as some claim to have done. I know the difference between having a little fun and falling downhill and believe Hornady is having all kinds of fun with this.

  • spun_zombie

    Walked into my local gun shop today to buy a few boxes plunker rounds. Saw the ZOMBIE max rounds and walked out $178 lighter , stocking stuffer shopping done. The young bucks will laugh the old farts will appreciate a quality round. Win win. For my self i now own a package of Birchwood/casy Darkotic zombie targets and a box of 12gauge ZOMBIE MAX rounds . Did i pay for a gimmick, hell yeh , am i still laughing about it you bet your decaying ass.

  • Charles

    * Just For Fun *………….

    7 Scientific Reasons a Zombie Outbreak Would Fail
    #7. They Have Too Many Natural Predators
    #6. They Can't Take the Heat
    #5. They Can't Handle the Cold
    #4. Biting is a Terrible Way to Spread a Disease
    #3. They Can't Heal from Day to Day Damage
    #2. The Landscape is Full of Zombie-Proof Barriers
    #1. Weapons and the People Who Use Them

    Read the article

    I realize that this is no "magic" bullet yet I plan on buying 1 box just as a collectors item.

    • Charles

      After posting, I was in the mood to watch the movie DOOM.

  • 1911ext45

    There WILL be a zombie apocalypse, the question is when. The current administration is going to make that happen (Can you say unsustainable?). Think Katrina, only on a national scale. When the free money stops, you will understand what zombies they are reffering to. Buy Hornady, Remington, Winchester and any thing else you can find that will go bang. Just get ready for Gods sake, cause it's a-comin.

  • LaserBeak78

    Deleted by administrator for bringing out a valid debate. Good job!

  • LaserBeak78

    Wow! This is how dumb we humans have become? I'm a nurse and basic anatomy will prove that zombies are not possible. Good luck to the 1st person who uses this ammo, Z-max, in a self-defense situation. The court will eat you up. If you seriously beleive in zombies then your insane and have NO business with a gun. It's people and marketing like this that bring harm and damage to our 2nd ammendment rights. Thanks a lot!

    • LaserBeak78

      By the way, the ACLU always finds some loop-hole in the system to try and take away our 2nd ammendment right even though the box of the Z-max ammo is labled not be used on a human/person. Better think about that before loading this ammo in your gun for self-defense. I'm all about good humor and LOVE watching fiction movies about zombies, but this kind of marketing is nothing to be joking about. This really hurts our fight to keep our 2nd ammendment.

      • B money

        Now you are trying to limit our 1 ammendment and if you use this stuff in Florida for self defense no one will care. Self defense is self defense even if you use a chain saw. Oh, and you don't have to be a nurse to know Zombies are science fiction. I just hope they work on Big Foot and Chubacabbras.

      • rmiller

        it will be good for civil war II when we are shooting the DHS agents who do have this stuff to kill us with.

      • Matt Scheaffer

        Oh STFU, we had a string of mass shootings and couldn’t even get tougher back ground checks for insane people. No one is taking your guns, quit believing the hype of the manufacturers trying to scare you into purchasing more. Idiots. You know how much money I made selling AR-15s to idiots who thought Obama was going to take them in both 2008 and 1012?

    • livinfree

      The politicians and lawyers have done what they set out to do, they have you so afraid that you have forgot what it is like to live in a free society.

      • LaserBeak78

        Your so far off. So sad

    • Poop


  • LaserBeak78

    ….and B-Money, do you know what Red Herring statements are? Cause you used two of them in your last comment. If you can not pick them out for me in your next comment, I will be glad too.

  • livinfree

    Congratulations to Hornady Ammo. I am a middle school principal and I am tired of having to be politically correct everyday in everything I do and say. This stuff is fun, and life is about having fun. As an American company the goal is to make money as well. We are a country built on free enterprise. I am going to buy a few boxes and renew my subscription to Guns and Ammo early. I hope Hornady makes a Zombillion dollars on this stuff. Keep up the quality work on your products………and have fun too.

  • mkawbrown
  • mkawbrown

    Check out these "Zombie Proof Ammo Cans"

  • idontknow.

    What or who is zed???

  • mkawbrown
  • doony

    Why do people hate robb zombie so much.. are his movies THAT bad?

  • Jerry Boy

    i just bought a box at my local gun store today, stuffs a little pricey at a dollar a round but its for home defense with some fun behind it not for range shooting. havent shot it yet but i will post after i do

    • Felix

      Man you should squeez a few rounds I love them, I have used .45 acp, .380 acp, and 9mm all are awsome they keep the velocity and tried them on a ballistic dummy great penetration and damage and I just love the accurecy from long distance. Yeah they are pricey but you know in my opinion as a shoot they are a much have but of course not for target practice but its good to try them because as you know every type of ammunition tends to shoot diffrent in gun and just the loads in general.

  • kyle

    hey i need some zombie ass kicking ammo for my .30-06 i wanna go up stairs lock the door up with some 2x4s n snipe them from my roof

  • Jimmy

    Haters every where. Don't hate! This is awesome., I own some and yes its in my carry gun.. Ammo is ammo.

  • Thad

    Id order a bunch and use ot for the zombie deer as well. shame it dont come for a D Eagle. (HINT HNT Hornady)

  • Pat

    I dont know… I reload so I just bought a box of 500 count , 55 grain .224 bullets for about $65 at midway. I read it was just a V Max with a green tip. And possibly swaged using a new and cheaper technique. Thats a heck of a discount over the V max line. I dont personally fault any company with trying to make money, ( Especially In this Economy). personally I think that if an individual is deranged enough to believe in zombies.. The last thing you need to worry about is what the color the tip of their ammo is. If this stuff punches paper like V max you can rest assured ill be buying more. We live in a changing world with a changing culture, if companies dont cater somwhat to the newer generation of shooters. Well then they go under, its that simple. For the most part i believe this is just a fad. In 10 years we wont even remember Z-Max bullets.

  • Felix

    I do agree with you. I Bought some for every caliber they have just for the hell of it. They are V-Max shoot the same. They are more of a selling/novalty deal. I did fire each kind and gave the empty boxes to my frind so he could use in his move. I have one box of each in my safe, I am loaded up with V-maxs in my hand-guns.

  • Astalker

    I get it cheap then its red tip brother. Thats all I care. Who cares what sale pitch they came up with.

  • Ryan

    got myself a box of 223, mainly just to have for the novelty factor, plan of attack come zombie apocalypse time is a constant conversation of my friends and I, but I actually think they are decent rounds. I use hornady for personal defense rounds in my other firearms, and these appear to basically be the same JHP round, only with a green tip instead.

  • Ashley8072

    I got a box of these today. :) Also was my first Hornady purchase. I needed to fill my Survival Box with hollow pts. After spending about 20 min w the sales clerk and checking through countless boxes, I realized that the ZombieMax are exactly like the Critical Defense, but dif tip colors. Why'd I get a box of each? The Zombie box got my attention. The dif between regular HPs and either of my purchases? That piece of rubber stuck in the end. :) The price for ZombieMax was the same as Critical Defense. My reason for buying…cuz Zombies wear clothes too. hehe

  • your mom.

    Gay wads.

  • ncasucci

    glad someone's thinking

  • Guest009

    Why are there no .357 magnum or 38 special zombie rounds? Oh well, I'll have to be content with the 7.62×39 rounds and use my SKS against the zombies.

  • Mason

    It's the same as the Critical Defense. But, I got it 3 dollars cheaper. Fired a few at a freinds ranch. Shoots great! good stuff! Need to get some .223 and shotgun. Glad someone in this industry has a sense of humor!

  • Jamie Hendricks

    I ordered mine through MidwayUSA – the box was messed up and they wouldn't replace the box for me – at least a few people buy this for collector / converation value. If you plan on buying it for that reason I don't recommend ordering from MidwayUSA

  • oathkeeper

    I for one am tired of having to be silent to people who want to take away my rights, don't want to offend those people now do we. Good for you Hornady! It's our right not a privlage they give us.

    • Lil Ed

      Well said, oathkeeper. I have spent decades worried about what "they", those who are against firearms, will think and say. To heck with them. I'm tired of trying to persuade. I am tired of all the talk. Perhaps the days to talk are near over.

  • Charlie

    They also make 30-30 rds. I bought them a couple of months back

  • Jimmie

    Anyone had any problems with them jamming? Brand new Sig Sauer 1911 ultra two tone never fired. Tried to chamber a round and it jammed.


      Maybe it was the gun?

    • Richard

      I carry these in my Citadel 1911 and have never had a jam

  • Brian Konopa

    So, if a citizen uses hollow-point ammunition in self-defense, but still is forced to defend against premeditated acts just for having that round loaded; then does it stand to reason that if they had Zombie defense ammunition loaded they could argue that shooting a human in self-defense was not their first intention?

  • Chuckles

    Aside from slugs, the Zombie Max eight-pellet .00 Buck is my favorite round to put through my tactical 12 gauge. I think the cupped wad helps it keep a tighter pattern, which is a plus with the buckshot. This is actually my go-to load for hunting whitetail in dense brush now. Thanks Hornady!

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