Plants Vs. Zombies

May 8, 2009


I’ve just played out my 60 minutes of demo time in Popcap’s latest ‘casual’ gaming release Plants Vs. Zombies and like most other Popcap releases it is a joy to play and addictive as hell. I’ve been a fan of Popcap for a while, and though they don’t produce ‘proper’ games they take budget titles, simple ideas and make loads of money from it. And I’m pleased to say that like previous Popcap titles like Peggle or Bookworm Adventures, Plants vs. Zombies is funny as well as being entertaining to play.

It’s kind of like tower defence but you are keeping your garden safe from hordes of zombies who are constantly crying out for brains and the like. To protect your property you plant offensive flowers, drop cherry bombs, consume graves with…other graves (?) and lace the garden with mushrooms. Every weapon and power up is intelligently designed and pleasantly animated and powered by the sun (which both falls from the sky and is produced by sunflowers, acting like a power up). Most things have a use and it’s fairly balanced, but you’ll come to find your preferred weapons and like Bookworm Adventures you can only take a limited amount of weapons or ‘seed packets’ with you at the start of each level.

Every now and then things are broken up by a mini game, whether it’s zombie bowling, whack-a-zombie or a frantic defence using randomly generated weapons. Expect the usual polished cartoony graphics and Popcap quirkiness as well as apt but repetitive music.

I won’t go into the full details of the gameplay but I recommend that you go out and at least play the demo to find out what it’s all about. And don’t be put off if you’re not a fan of RTS (I’m not either) as it requires focused tactics and no fiddly micro-managing. In fact, just writing about it here is making me want to go and buy it so I can play it some more.

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