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Plants vs. Zombies (PC)

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11 Reviews

Genre: Puzzle / CD-ROM for Windows Vista / Windows 2000 / Windows XP / Release Date: 2009-10-03 / Published by Focus Multimedia Ltd

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    11 Reviews
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      22.05.2013 16:21
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      Brilliant game, give it a go

      Plants vs Zombies is a fun-loving game where you defeat on-coming hordes of various zombies by planting different plants in the adventure mode and unlocking bonus levels, zombies and plants as you go along.

      Sounds ridiculous, right? Yeah it does actually but seeing is believing in this game. The catchy music, your in-game friend Crazy Dave and drive to unlock everything helps make this game highly addictive and enjoyable.
      You start off with a basic tutorial, plant some Sunflowers to get Sun and use the Sun to plant Pea Shooters. Pea Shooters, pretty self explanitory, shoots peas at on coming zombies and once all zombies are dead you win the level. However, if the zombies get past your plants and into your house, level over and they eat your brains. As levels pass you unlock more attacking and defensive plants but also hardier zombies (that also seem to get more comical as you go along). You also unlock bonus levels and re-play the adventure through a second time to unlock the super secret zombie.

      There are a lot of levels in the adventure mode itself and you unlock about 20 mini-games plus puzzle levels and survival modes, giving this game a lot of play through time. The graphics are cartoony with plenty of bright colours (apart from those dreaded night and lightening levels) with catchy music, slightly comical sound effects and Crazy Dave to keep you company.

      The success of the game is mainly the game itself but it hasn't been harmed by the craze for everything zombie over the past couple of years or so. It also appeals to all age groups, nothing is dumbed down but nothing is too hard or intelligent, and is simply a fun game to play. You can't really ask for more than that.

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        17.08.2011 21:10
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        A casual game that I think most gamers would enjoy

        Plants vs Zombies can be a real time stealer if you are not careful. It is an addictive game, with a simple premise. There are zombies that are threatening your home, your main line of defence is an array of fun and funky plants. More plants become 'unlocked' as the game progresses, and it is this aspect of the game that makes it quite addictive.

        Moving through each level makes you will want to find out what is coming up next, which next plant, with which particular defensive strategy? Each plant has its own unique ability, such a peashooters that fire peas at the Zombies, Wall-nuts that hold the zombies back as they eat them, and squash that jumps on zombies as they move towards them.

        The zombies themselves also have unique abilities and weakness, and it is your job to match up the right set of zombies, that you see on the screen before the zombies invade your lawn, roof etc, with the plants that will protect your home.

        The almanac that describes the plants and zombies is really fun to read, with amusing one liners and some cute facts about the plants and zombies thoughts and feelings.

        The levels start off quite easy and get harder, but they are not too challenging that you want to give up on the game completely. As you progress through the game you will really build up a lot of plants, and this will add to the challenge of the game in terms of selecting the most useful plants.

        Plants vs Zombies is a very easy game to get into, it is addictive in a good way, and you will definitely return to this game for more.

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        25.06.2011 11:05
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        A funny and cute tower defence game that will test your reflexes and BRAINS!

        Plants vs Zombies - my what a peculiar concept for a video game. I wonder what kind of plants the chaps at PopCap Games were smoking when they came up with this idea. Remember kids, stay away from drugs or your intellect shall be reduced to the level of the brain dead zombies that feature in this game. Since its release back in 2009, Plants vs Zombies has proven to be a huge hit on various systems. I myself only recently joined the floral versus corpses party after picking up the title on sale. After giving it a go I can see why it has proven to be so popular with gamers across the globe.

        GAMEPLAY

        The zombie apocalypse is upon us, but fret not humble player for you have trained as a gardener, the best profession to survive such a crisis (in your face soldiers.) The aim of the game is to survive the wave of zombies that are hungrily eyeing your big juicy brain (my won't they feel silly when they crack open my skull and find nowt after the effects of alcohol killed off my brain cells.) Between you and the horde of animated undead is a lawn where you can grow seeds which will grow into plants that will protect you. I would rather take my chances with a shotgun and chainsaw, but after seeing a squash kick arse I have to admit that flowers can be effective in a fight.

        The lawn is made up of a number of rows broken down into patches where seeds can be planted via the simple to use mouse controls. Each level has a number of zombies heading towards your home, with the speed of a postal queue, which must be halted. When deploying plants be aware that you need enough sunlight to grow them. At periodic intervals orbs of sunlight rain down from the sky which you collect by clicking them with the mouse. Solar power is in effect the currency used to purchase plants during battle.

        What keeps Plants vs Zombies interesting is the range of plants on offer and the types of zombies you encounter as the game progresses. When the game begins you get your typical run of the mill zombies who don't move fast and are falling to pieces. As you fend them off they however become more resourceful in their attempts to invade your home. You'll start to encounter zombies that wear protective traffic cones on their noggin, zombies that pole vault over defences, deceased American footballers who charge at your plants, dancing zombies (Bruce Forsyth?) and even zombie dolphins (RIP Flipper.)

        Before every level you get a quick glance at the zombies that are approaching which is handy when selecting what seeds to use to counter them. Every plant has their own skill and it is up to you to take advantage of their abilities to erect (hehe) an impenetrable defence. Some of the plants at your disposal include Sunflowers who generate extra orbs of sunlight, peashooters than blast zombies from range with peas, hazelnuts that act as walls which zombies have to eat to get past and cherries which explode turning any undead in the vicinity to ash.

        PRESENTATION

        As you may have gathered from the game's title, Plants vs Zombies doesn't treat itself too seriously. Yes there are zombies, but this is not a Resident Evil style gory bloodbath. There are lots of humorous touches in the game which are complemented by the cartoony art style used. The bright colours and cute designs are all pleasing on the eye with my only complaint being that the title screen looks a little blocky in a few areas. That's not a big deal though as overall the game looks good and runs smoothly without taxing your computer in terms of hardware requirements.

        The sound effects and music are also first rate with the main theme song being the highlight. It's a catchy ditty sung by a sunflower featuring some laugh out loud lyrics. The background music isn't too shabby either although I hardly noticed it when playing as your concentration is taken up with all the action on screen. To be honest the music struggles to be heard against the sound effect of zombies chewing on your plants and their groans (I guess like children the departed do not like munching on their veggies.)

        GAME MODES

        The meat of the game is the adventure mode that runs for fifty levels. It starts with you fighting off zombies on your lawn, but you eventually move to the backyard that houses a pool and eventually your house's rooftop. These new areas ramp up the challenge as you cannot grow plants on water or roof tiles. To deal with aquatic zombies you first have to place floating lily pads for your plants to sit on whilst the roof stages demand that you place a flower pot where ever you intend to summon a plant.

        Over the course of the adventure you also have night time levels that deny you the aid of sunlight forcing you to depend on plants to generate solar orbs. Thankfully in these stages you gain access to inexpensive fungi than can be grown at little to no solar cost. The most frustrating hazard to contend with, in my opinion, would have to be the fog. It covers part of the screen concealing the incoming zombies. Thankfully you gain access to plants that can see through it and even blow it away for a short period of time.

        Aside from the main adventure you also get a host of mini-games to keep you occupied. From the arcade style ones on offer I liked the bowling one best. In it you have to use rolling nuts to knock down zombies. There are also several mini-games to tax your mind including one were you switch sides and have to think up ways of getting the zombies past plants. One other neat feature is the Zen garden where you can grow plants which generate cash (money really does grow on trees it seems.) Income can be spent on goodies on sale at Crazy Dave's store (which is actually your rambling neighbour's car boot.)

        OVERALL

        My only real complaint with Plants vs Zombies is that the adventure mode can be beaten in a couple of sittings. Although fifty levels sounds like a lot you can make a lot of progress as the game isn't very hard. I only died a couple of times on my first run although I guess that should be expected as the title is aimed at casual players. It's something I can overlook though due to the game's charm and inexpensive price. I'm giving it full marks as it ranks as the best tower defence game I have ever played. It's one of those rare titles that anyone can get into although I would assume fans of puzzlers or strategy games would get the most enjoyment out of it. Give it a go and I am sure you will find that Plants is as addictive as an opium poppy.

        Review also posted on Ciao.

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        • More +
          31.07.2010 15:02
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          Recommended

          I am by no means a Gamer, but every once in a while I develop an addiction to one game or another, back in days of yore it was Prima Materia, and later Snood. Casual games, as my son sneeringly comments. Anyway, I can't say that I was desperate to play Plants Vs Zombies, as the concept sounded a bit silly to me, but when I was finally enticed it turned out to be the most addictive yet.

          The Scene: You are defending your home against a seemingly never ending wave of ingenious zombies who are determined to make it across your lawn, into the house, and to eat your brains. Thankfully, you are aided by friendly and helpful plants in your garden. Each plant has a different usage - whether defence or attack, and your choice of which plants to use in the garden will determine whether or not you are successful in defending your brain.

          The game play builds up very slowly, with a very shallow learning curve, making this game suitable for anyone with little experience in gaming. The plants are introduced one by one, as are different types of zombies with different skills of their own. There are occasional visits from your neighbour, Crazy Dave, who will provide tips, or introduce mini games.

          Unlike most Zombie genre games and films, this is not in the least scary. It is cute and funny and although it has a 12 rating it would be hard to take the light hearted eating of brains seriously enough to want to ban a younger child from playing it.

          This game is widely available for around a fiver and has hours and hours of play, once you finish the main game there are lots of extras to unlock, and some of these are life-threateningly addictive!

          Update- I am still addicted to this game!

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          22.07.2010 14:41
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          There's a zombie on your lawn. We don't want zombies on the lawn.

          Brraaainnnns!!

          That was my little cousin's reaction after playing PopCap's Plants vs. Zombies. Think he has been zombiefied by the game... like me.

          Plants vs. Zombies is an extremely addictive tower defence game, with a well balanced "cutesy" factor... but not to the point where you feel like gagging.

          - Gameplay -

          The objective of the game is simple.
          1) There's zombies on your lawn, and wanting to eat your brain.
          2) You want to kill the zombies.
          3) How do you do that? .... Flower power! ... More like plant power.

          To protect the zombies from entering your home, you plant a varierty of plant to act as a line of defense such as pods and watermelon. Each round you get to choose and pick the plants you want to be part of your defense team, and get a sneak peek on the road, what type of nasty zombies you will be against.

          How to grow the plants that you want? Lots of sunshine. The more powerful plant requires more sunshine. Sunshine from the sky is not enough to grow all the plants that you want. So you will need to grow sunflowers to get them. But be wise about the planting, as the seeds take time to recharge and you only have that much space to grow your crops. You'll get it once you start playing the game. Once you get some money from the game, you can visit Crazy Dave and buy some interesting add-ons to your game.

          The game continues into night mode, on the roof mode, with swimming pool mode, foggy night mode etc, where you get to meet more zombies and use more plants in your games.

          And after finishing every mode... there is much more to do!! You can play the mini games to test your skills, tend to your Zen Garden, visit the Tree of Wisdom, which will gives you plenty of surprises to spice up your zombies. The mini games itself are very entertaining. If you think that's about it... there's still a never ending survival mode... (I am currently at >500 rounds), that is well... as interesting itself!

          - Verdict -

          The music is excellent (sings: "There's a zombie on your lawn"). The graphics are high quality. The plants are really cute and the zombies are funny.

          Ah... makes me want to continue my never ending survival mode.

          - Lyrics to the music -

          There's a zombie on your lawn
          There's a zombie on your lawn
          There's a zombie on your lawn
          We don't want zombies on the lawn

          I know your type: tall, dark, and dead
          You want to bite all the petals off of my head
          And then eat the brains of
          the one who planted me here

          I'm just a sunflower but see
          me power an entire infantry
          You like the taste of brains
          we don't like zombies

          I used to play football
          Road cones protect my head
          I have a screen-door shield
          We are the undead

          Maybe it's time to reevaluate
          I know you have a lot of food on your plate
          Brains are quite rich in cholesterol

          You're dead so it doesn't matter,
          Instead we'll use this solar power
          to make a lawn defense at any hour

          I like the tricycle
          There's butter on my head
          I'm gonna eat your brains

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            25.03.2010 21:22
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            Another Awesome Game From Popcap

            I may have mentioned before, but I hate the fact that Zombies have this reputation of being slow and really pathetic. Well now I'm glad they've got this reputation, as otherwise this would probably be a very dificult game, and I probably wouldn't like it so much.
            Anyway, I always find that with pc games, I get bored very easily (I have never made it past the 12th lever on the Diner Dash games) but with this one, I managed to get past the whole game, and am on my second play.

            The game is a simple tower defense game. Plant different weapons, that are actually some really cute looking plants, on a lawn, where zombies willl travel up to try to get to your house and 'eat your brains!'

            The good thing is, you don't just get a couple of the same kinds of plants the whole way through, you go throught the game collecting new plants, and are able to choose 7 (up to 10) in your 'arsenal' against the ever expanding and different kind of zombies.

            There are lots of different levels, night, day, pool, they even manage to get on the roof. There are also lots of little mini games, some are even based on other popular popcap games (Bejeweled and Insaniquarium), and some survival games. Which are fun, especially when you're getting annoyed with the actual game.

            Another thing is you can make money buy collecting plants and putting them in the 'zen garden.' There is also a tree of wisdom, where if you feed your tree so it grows high enough, you can type in things (e.g. mustache) to make weird things happen to the zombies (the Zombie grows a mustache).

            What else is good about this game is that it is continually challenging, when you've passed the whole thing, you can then start again, except this time 'Crazy Dave' picks 3 plants for you. And the mini games are all very difficult, although at times can be very dificult.

            Once again Popcap have released a very good game, something you can go back to again and again and not get bored.

            P.S the graphics and soundtrack are also brilliant, and the 'almanac' full of stuff about the zombies and plants is also funny as well.

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            31.01.2010 11:28
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            Awesome Videogame

            Garden of the Dead

            When it comes to video games, sometimes the simplest concepts are these best - and this is certainly the case with Pop-Cap Games' 2009 release 'Plants Vs Zombies'. The title fits into the broad genre of 'tower defence', and should provide the average gamer with many hours of solid entertainment. The player takes the role of a nameless garden-owner who is under attack from a wave of brain-hungry zombies which are intent on breaking into your home. The action is depicted from a three-quarter top down view which shows your lawn, and a small portion of the patio area which the zombies should be not be allowed to reach.


            How Do I Play?

            The idea is to strategically plant a selection of zombie-repelling plants in order to stop the oncoming hordes from reaching your front door. To simplify the concept, you have to prevent the zombies getting from the right hand side of the screen to the left hand side by employing some crafty horticulturalism. You may well be wondering 'how can flora stop the undead?', well, these aren't normal plants - in fact, these leafy wonders are capable of firing projectiles, squashing the opposition, and generally causing all manner of mayhem. Want a gun turret? - plant a pea which will become a pea shooter. Want a catapult? - plant a melon and watch as they are flung across the screen. Want an Explosive? Plant a chili... you get the general idea.

            Each level introduces a new plant into your arsenal, and a few stages into the game you'll be equipped with a wide range of plant-based weapons to choose from. Before you pop your plants into the ground however, you'll need to afford them, and this is done by collecting enough of the in-game currency which is sunlight. Sun is collected by clicking on the sun icons which fall at regular intervals from the sky - however, if you want to accumulate sun more quickly, you can plant sunflowers which will speed up the process.

            The general concept of the game may sound a little odd, but it is really, really addictive - plus, a lot of strategy will be required in order to progress to the later levels. Once you've set you garden of flowers it's really satisfying to see the army of zombies struggling against the weapons you've put down.

            Where the title really excels, is in its humour, and there are countless hilarious touches which make the gaming experience that little bit better. From the traffic cone hat wearing minions, to the pole vaulting and snorkelling zombies, there's something new around every corner which is sure to entertain.


            Later Levels

            After successfully repelling the zombies from your front garden in the first few stages, it's time to do some zombie-bustin' during the night - and it's here that things start to get really tough. The night brings with it a whole new set of challenges, and the zombies themselves become a little more formidable. There are many types of undead which you will encounter during the gaming experience, and these range from the bog standard, slow moving groaners, to the running zombies who are dressed in American Football gear. There are even zombies who drive trucks which makes defeating them a whole lot more difficult!

            After the nighttime levels, it's on to your back garden (which also has a pool to defend), and later on, you'll be fighting zombies on the rooftops. The roof levels are probably the most difficult of the lot, and require you to place plant-pots (at extra cost), before you can put your plants down.


            Visuals & Sound

            In terms of the graphics, Plants Vs Zombies is simple yet incredibly effective. Everything is bright and colourful, and all of the sprites have a carefully crafted and polished appearance. To be honest, a game of this nature doesn't have to be visually stunning, but Plants Vs Zombies is extremely well presented. Similarly, the sound effects are fitting - from the noise which the zombies make when they begin munching in your plants, to the splattering of melon-catapult on zombie head - it's aurally impressive and can't be faulted.

            During the levels there are a few musical backing tracks which play constantly. Whilst these are nicely crafted, they may start to grate after a while due to the sheer amount that they are played. Perhaps adding another track to the gaming experience may have kept things fresh, and prevented me from actually switching off the music as I did on a couple of occasions.

            As well as the main campaign mode, there are a plethora of other mini-games and puzzle modes, all of which add a massive replay value once the main game has been completed. There even a virtual 'Zen Garden' where you have to purchase and then water a range of seedlings - although this isn't a game mode which I am particularly impressed by. The game is only single player, and a two player battle mode may have been a nice touch - perhaps that could feature in a future sequel.


            Easy...? Difficult...?

            In terms of the difficulty levels, Plants Vs Zombies is without doubt quite a tricky title in the later stages. If I have one criticism however, it's the fact that it could have perhaps done with a couple of extra levels as I found myself completing the game a little too quickly. I would estimate the completion time of the main game at around five to six hours, which is actually little short for a game of this nature. That said, as I previously mentioned, the mini-games and other modes make the replay value quite high.


            Final Word

            All in all, Plants Vs Zombies is an incredibly addictive strategy game which ticks all the right boxes in terms of entertainment value. The simplistic yet effective graphics further enchance the gaming experience, and the end result is a title which is sure to please. It's good for a quick blast of gaming when you're a little bored, and it's perfectly suitable for a cheeky fifteen minutes here and there.

            Anyone who wants to give Plants Vs Zombies a try can download the game from the Pop-Cap website ( www.popcap.com ) for £14.99, and It's available for both PC and Mac. You can actually buy the PC version a little cheaper in CD-Rom form from Amazon, where it currently costs only £5.93 - beware though, you just might become addicted!

            Highly recommended.

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              21.10.2009 11:12
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              Best tower defence game around

              This is one of those tower defence style games except you must protect your house from the zombies that are coming to attack and eat you up. The game is ingenious as you get to play by earning Sun to buy plants, whichhave several different abilities and by doing so attack the onslaught of zombies coming at you.

              There are six rows of madness to play with and later on you can play on the rooftop, pool and another garden. The game gets incredibly hard at the end and has a lot of depth to it. This has to be one the most enjoyable and best tower defence styled games around. Also it is very amusing especially the zombies with their random shouts and the way people talk in game.

              There are different types of zombies some wth cones on their heads, some with buckets, some are running jocks etc. These all take differing amounts of shots etc to kill.

              The plants you use vary from peashooters, which have varying levels of strength, ie one shot, 2 shots, triple shots, chain gun peashooter. And you also get things like water lilles so you can place plants on water, and walnut bombs etc. The list goes on and on.

              The game also brings you random minigames like a bowling challenge and other crazy things which are funny to play and also get difficult.

              The control system in game is very simple and easy to use, basically you point and click you have a few cards in the top right corner which you choose before you start the battle so you can chose the units you'd like to use. Then when in game and you have enough sun to produce that unit you click on the card and where you wanna place it. Very easy.

              The graphics are cartoon like yet very vivid and detailed the zombies themselves are really well drawn and have funny characteristic and animated with funny walks. The game adds to the humour of the game through the graphuics and animations.

              Overall this is the best style of the defence tower games Ive seen and think its a must get for such a cheap price on the net.

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                26.08.2009 21:04
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                Brain-eatingly good.

                The internet has a way of making things so popular that you end up hating them. Zombies, for instance, are the sub-culture reference du jour. Things versus Other Things - no, I don't care whether a pirate could beat a ninja. And tower defence games, which are this season's match-three puzzler, ubiquitous and increasingly boring. So Popcap, in a typically contrary move, decide to make a tower defence game called Plants Vs Zombies. And it's brilliant. It even contains a bonus match-three puzzler. Curse them!

                So, the zombies are coming to your house with the sole intention of eating your brains, and all that stands between them and your tasty head-meat is a grass lawn and anything you can plant on it. Thankfully you have at your disposal a host of ferocious flowers and vicious vegetables, from Peashooters to Cherry Bombs. The battle is on.

                Zombies march across the lawn in six rows, lurching inexorably from the right of the screen to the left. Your lawn is helpfully checkered, and in any given square you can grow one of your pugnacious plants. Peashooters spit peas at the zombies, potato mines explode when stood on. Chompers are essentially Venus Zombietraps, and can swallow a zombie whole but take a while to digest it, leaving the plant vulnerable. So why not protect it behind a tough Wallnut or a zombie-flattening Squash?

                There are different types of zombies, too - some have figured out how to wear traffic cones or buckets on their heads for protection. Some use screen doors as riot shields. Pole-vaulting zombies can jump your first line of defence. And there are dancing zombies who moonwalk across the screen in familiar red-and-black suits, summoning back-up dancers as they go. Later on in the game some of them figure out how to use bungie ropes to attack you from above.

                The aim, then, is to place your flowers tactically to see off the various zombie types. To plant a flower you'll need to collect sunlight, which acts as a currency for buying plants, and is randomly generated onscreen. You can also plant Sunflowers which generate sunlight for you, and clicking around the screen to collect sunlight adds a frenetic twist to the tactical gameplay. And although Plants Vs Zombies is welcoming, the systems are well polished and do allow for a surprising amount of tactical depth.

                There's a lot to this game. Once you've defended your front lawn you'll have to take to the rear of the house, where your yard is dominated by a swimming pool, necessitating new tactics to overcome new varieties of zombies. Then it's up to the roof, where plants need to be placed in pots which themselves can be destroyed by zombies. Along the way there are numerous minigames, all based on the core gameplay but all with their own unique and genuinely imaginative twists. You might find yourself bowling Wallnuts at advancing zombies, or breaking open barrels to reveal either plants or the undead. There are even versions of other Popcap games like Bejewelled and Insaniquarium, just with added brain-eating and cabbages.

                The graphics are lovely. They're certainly not technically advanced, but they're colourful and wonderfully animated, packed full of humour and personality. The little touches are excellent, from the disgusted expression as a zombie chomps down on a garlic plant to the single tear in the eye of a stoic Tallnut as its munched by the undead. The sound too is excellent, with great music and vocal samples.

                Popcap have a special talent for taking ideas that shouldn't really work, sprinkling them with fun dust and polishing them until they gleam. That's what they've done here; they've taken a genre that was in danger of overfamiliarity and rejuvenated it, adding a healthy dash of humour along the way. With the host of unlockable bonus content and a core idea that's just plain fun, Plants Vs Zombies is yet another great addition to Popcap's excellent catalogue and a game well worth playing.

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                  12.06.2009 22:24
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                  Excellent value overall - worth a try even if you haven't liked Popcap's other efforts.

                  Plants vs Zombies is a cheerfully animated game by Popcap in which you attempt to protect your house from hordes of the restless dead. By gardening at them.

                  At first glance the bulk of the game is Adventure Mode: 50 levels of increasing difficulty across three different environments, including natural conditions such as night-time and fog.

                  When in this mode you use plants such as the sunflower to literally generate pieces of sun which you collect and use to buy other plants. You then deposit your new plants on the left of the screen; the zombies appear from the right and shamble toward your array of deadly greenery until dispatched.

                  The wide variety of plants available and the steady learning curve mean that Popcap has released yet another well-balanced, addictive game. The game isn't without its flaws, and experienced gamers may find Adventure Mode a little too easy, but it's generally both fun and strangely compelling - I found myself playing a little more at times simply because I knew I could finish the next level in a few minutes and be guaranteed a little reward in the form of a new plant or additional item.

                  Adventure Mode should take around seven or eight hours to complete. However, this is not the end - as you progress through Adventure Mode, several minigames are unlocked. Furthermore, after you finish Adventure Mode a large number of other puzzles and minigames are then made available, theoretically giving you hours of further play time.

                  The balance here seemed a little off to me, though - I was expecting from other reviews to receive a steady stream of unlockable content as I played, but instead unlocked very little until I had completed Adventure Mode - so if you don't think you'll be able to manage 50 levels of essentially the same three locations over and over, you may not get your money's worth.

                  (You can also play through Adventure Mode again, the game this time restricting the plants you can use for each level for an additional challenge. I can't see myself ever doing this, but it is a welcome option for somebody who just cannot get enough plant/zombie action.)

                  Earlier I said PvS 'theoretically' gives you hours of additional play - I say this because the majority of these games are not interesting enough to stand by themselves for very long, but they certainly add value when considered as part of the overall package (some of them are simplified clones of other Popcap games - Beghouled being a variant of Bejewelled, for instance).

                  I have to admit that I would not pay the full £15 price the official Popcap site charges for this game. However, if you happen to use Valve's Steam service, Plants vs Zombies is available for £6.99. This seems more than reasonable for more gameplay than you'll find in most big-budget titles these days.

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                  • More +
                    08.06.2009 14:49
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                    Great budget price for a game which will give hours of pleasure

                    Popcap are those remarkable folks who have brought us previous delights such as, Insaniquarium, Chuzzle, Dynomite and Bookworm Adventures. These budget price games usually sell for around £15, although you can play demos for free. These demos are usually the full version of the game, but are limited to 30 minutes play.

                    Plants Vs Zombies is a tower defence game of ridiculously addictive proportions. Zombies are trying to attack your house and eat your brains. You have to do some gardening and cultivate plants to stop them! There are five lanes of lawn, each consisting of several squares in which you can place plants. You place these plants strategically to stop the zombies from gaining entry. As the game progresses, you earn new plants, new locations and face new enemies.

                    You need sunlight to grow more plants, so get planting those sunflowers! Then, you need to attack zombies, so purchase the Pea Shooter. Suddenly, they are trying to swim across your swimming pool, so grow some lily pads and cover them in Chompers! At the start of each level, you will see the types of zombies which will attack you, so can prepare your arsenal accordingly, as you only have a select amount of slots to fill from a choice of about thirty plants. Do you want to purchase that sunflower upgrade to double your sunshine, or purchase that Gatling gun pea shooter and go all out offense?

                    As you kill off the undead, they will sometimes drop coins which you can click on early money. This money can be spent in your next door neighbour's shop. Crazy Dave will offer nuggets of wisdom whilst selling you upgrades and assorted items.

                    The graphics are up to Popcap's usual high standards. It is all presented in a comical style with plenty of humour in-between. The characters animate well, with amusing characteristics and personalities. The sound effects are satisfying, whether it be a zombie's demands for more brains, or a watermelon exploding on an enemy. The background music is fairly repetitive, but that seems to be the norm for this genre of game. The tunes are inoffensive enough, but you will find yourself listening to them in your head after an extended period of time, which is mind melting.

                    As you progress through the adventure mode, you unlock new game modes. These mini games can be fairly diverting, ranging from zombie bowling to zombie themed versions of old Popcap games. Whilst entertaining for five minutes, I can't see anyone playing them repeatedly. Survival mode is infuriating as hell, especially the hard versions. Getting to level eight of roof mode only to fight your defences obliterated by gargantuan zombies will have you crying yourself to sleep.

                    The main problem with this game is that it is insanely addictive. I find myself playing for an hour, then another, then another. I go to sleep picturing strategies and systems. It is insanely infuriating. For £15 there is a lot to uncover here. After completing adventure mode, you can replay it with all your new plants and power-ups, whilst finding yourself handicapped by Crazy Dave. You will want to complete all of the survival modes in order to purchase new gardens and grow the ultimate Zen garden.

                    Whilst I do spent a disproportionate amount of my time gaming, the problem with Plants vs Zombies is that it feels so pointless. I will spend hour s upon hours practising Street Fighter so that I can buffer into a 720, or grind out experience points by completing meaningless side quests in a Bioware game as I know it leads to something, online domination or plot advancement, respectively. I know that once I have finished this game by purchasing and unlocking everything, that I will never touch it again. I have this morbid obsession with it, almost resulting in self-loathing, because I know how pointless it is, but I still can't help but play it anyway.

                    Playing it is immense fun, do not get me wrong. Atomising hordes of zombies with your carefully co-ordinated attacks is fantastically satisfying, just that I feel a little dirty afterwards for having wasted so much time playing until 3am and spending the next day feeling awful, when I am supposed to be a responsible adult.

                    For the price, it is a bargain. I must have spent about ten hours on over the last week, and have unlocked about half of the game. If you enjoy this type of game, then buy it, but do not blame me if you can't get to sleep. Ever again.

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                  • Product Details

                    A mob of fun-loving zombies is about to invade your home, and your only defense is an arsenal of 49 zombie-zapping plants. Use peashooters, wall-nuts, cherry bombs and more to mulchify 26 types of zombies before they can reach your front door.