The art of making a casual game that become a smash hit with those gamers who despise the ‘casual games market’ is a tough one to crack. PopCap are a company who seem to have mastered the art of the highly-polished casual game. Their latest iteration of PC / Mac title Plants vs. Zombies is no exception, it brings addictive, fun gameplay to the iPhone format. We reviewed Plants vs. Zombies for PC back in May last year. Our reviewer – Kristin – thoroughly enjoyed the title. We’re back again to see if the iPhone version is as good.
At its core Plants vs. Zombies is a tower defense game, in essence you must stop waves of – adorable – zombies making it across your lawn and up to your house. You fight the shambling hordes by planting an arsenal of plants in their path, plants that spit, explode, stop the zombies in their tracks and various other awesomeness. New plants are opened as you progress through the game and sunshine gives you the power to purchase them. It’s all very simple, but addictive as hell.
As well as new plants appearing each time you finish a level, so too do new types of zombies. Newer zombies will bring with them more difficulty, be it taking more damage to kill them or less shambling, more Sue Sylvester styled running. Plants vs. Zombies iPhone incarnation loses little in its transition as far as the main game is concerned, it retains a whopping 50 levels, though the mini-games have been removed in favor of Adventure and Quick Play modes. Given the price of this title ($3.99 AUD, $2.99 USD at time of writing) you get plenty of zombie bang for your buck.
The iPhone / iTouch user-interface feels like it was made to host Plants vs. Zombies, tapping seeds with your finger and placing them on the lawn is superb and for the most part precise. In many ways playing the game on the iPhone is better than using a mouse to click your way through. High praise to PopCap for doing such a wonderful job in the porting of this game.
So are there any negatives to this title? Well, if it can be termed a negative, it’s so addictive you’ll probably finish it fairly fast, that said, the price point is more than fair in this regard. In later levels there appeared slight stuttering when the screen was extremely busy, but this did nothing to mar what is a fun gaming experience.
If you have an iPhone or iPod Touch and you missed out on Plants vs. Zombies when it released last year on PC, get it.
Review by Angela
U-Haul Review Status:
Plants versus Zombies has made a fantastic transition to the iPhone format. Protecting your house from the zombie horde feels as natural as can be with the touch screen format. It’s addictive, creative and cheap at the present price. Hire that U-Haul and move this shambling sucker in!
Plants vs. Zombies gets the Lara Perkins L Word Rating. Like Lara Plants vs. Zombies is cute, colorful and underneath it pretty sexy! It has all the ingredients of an addictive, fun title. Get a little Lara in your life.