These unfortunates are neither Undead nor Ghosts, but people victimized by drugs and torture. Voodoo societies sometimes do not rely on magical powers (the concentration of Gifted in Haiti is greater than normal, but it still is not huge). Many practitioners, especially those who follow the Red Path, also have an extensive body of knowledge dealing with drugs and potions.
The most powerful zombie drug, made with the secretions of an exotic puffer fish and other ingredients, paralyzes a victim to the degree that even trained doctors pronounce him dead. If the poison overcomes its target, the victim collapses, and his metabolism slows to the point that a heartbeat can only be spotted on a Perception and Medicine Task with a massive penalty. The victim is totally self-aware and conscious, and quite capable of feeling pain. As long as neither an autopsy or embalming is performed, the victim is alive and well when buried. Dark Voodoo cults often kidnap the victim or steal the body before either procedure is carried out, and perform the burial themselves. The ordeal is devastating. Although the poison slows down the target’s metabolism, the interment deprives him of oxygen long enough to inflict damage. If the victim is a Voodoo believer, he often becomes convinced that he is now undead, and bound to his “creator.”
Living Zombies have no special powers. Their Intelligence and Willpower are permanently reduced by 2 levels, unless regained magically through the Greater Healing Invocation or other potent Gifted powers. If the Voodoo cultists who “created” the victim have high levels of Intimidation or Smooth Talking, they are usually able to control the victim. These near-mindless wretches do almost anything their “masters” demand of them, although some particularly vile tasks may be resisted with a Simple Willpower Test.