Posted on May 6th, 2009 in Axel Night, Video Games by Axel Night

If you follow the site or podcast, you know that I am, in fact, dead.  It happens to the best of us.  Some dirty hobo bites you, but you write it off and wake up hungover with a strange itch and hankering for some bipedal fast food.  As a result, I haven’t had much in the way of free time, and when I do make it out to be social, I just end up eating their brains.  So, like any simple minded automaton without much free time, I found myself at Pop Cap Games.  There, I found Plants vs Zombies.

Normally, I consider Pop Cap Games more of a computer virus company than actual game makers.  Maybe I’m just not a fan of Bejeweled.  No, that’s not it.  I’m not a fan of paying $19.95 for Bejeweled.  Yeah, there we go.  They specialize in making colorful time wasters for upper-end bargain bin prices.  So, when Plants vs Zombies dropped yesterday, I wasn’t exactly leaping for my wallet.

Still, it came advised (the old ladies at work who love Bejeweled didn’t care for it), and thus I felt compelled to give it a try.  Okay, really, it was the music video that sealed the deal.

The concept is simple.  At its core, PvZ is a castle defense game.  (The genre has been gathering popularity lately, so that’s no surprise.)  Zombies are on your lawn, but we don’t want zombies on our lawn, so you grow plants to fight them off.  By collecting bursts of sunlight that fall onto the screen from the sky, you can create plant units along the left side of the screen to fend off the zombies lurching at you from the right.  You begin with a simple collection of plants to choose from.  Sunflowers form the backbone of your resource management.  They create more sunlight to put to use in making other plants, such as the Pee Shooter for zombie killing.  As you progress through the game, you’ll collect new plant types in your arsenal against increasing varieties of zombies, ranging from your pole vaulters to bungie jumpers to swimming pool infesting zombie dolphins.  I always knew Darwin on Sea Quest was up to no good, the brain eating bastard.

Is it worth the $19.95 gouge tag?  There’s enough variety in the main game to keep things fresh, even after the quirky humor grows stale.  And it is fun.  You know, that oddball concept we used to apply to games before blurred, brown, overly-reflective textures gushing blood were encouraged sights in gaming.  But, to keep the play refreshing, a variety of puzzle and mini modes round off the equation, including "I, Zombie" mode, which lets you take the side of the invading undead.

If you’re not sure, a 30-minute demo (boo, timed demos!) is offered.  It gives a good taste of what there is to have, and you might just find yourself addicted.  If you do, I suggest walking your finger down to Steam, and picking up their copy for $9.99 instead.  I might consider paying $20 for a Nintendo DS version, if we ever see it, but until then, $9.99 seems fair for a PC game of this type.

 

What are people saying about "Plants vs Zombies (PC)"?

Sasha Kenzan
Re: Plants vs Zombies (PC)

Fuck, that music video is catchy.
Sasha Kenzan
Re: Plants vs Zombies (PC)

As a brief aside, I always download these Popcap games and get sucked in.  I blame Peggle.

DON'T YOU LOOK AT ME LIKE THAT.  PEGGLE WAS AWESOME.
Ethos
Re: Plants vs Zombies (PC)

I feel you on bejeweled my wife is hopelessly addicted. It's a decent game i think i'll buy it Smiley

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