iPad Game Review: Plants vs. Zombies HD Reviewed by Shaun Price
If you like destroying zombies with Peashooters and Cherry Bombs trying to defend your house, PopCap has just the right game for you. Plants vs. Zombies is a unique kind of tower defense game that is addicting once you start playing.
Plants vs. Zombies HD has 50 levels of Adventure and Quick Play modes, plus the Survival mode from the original game. It is broken down into stages ?1-1, 1-2?2-1? and so on. You start off with a few starter weapons. A Sunflower and a Peashooter. You use the sun that spawns through out the level in a combination with the Sunflowers that make suns. You use the suns to plant different weapons some require more sun than others. As you progress through the beginning levels you get a few more: a Cherry bomb, Walnut, etc. You win more plants as you complete levels.
When you complete level four of stage one you meet Crazy Dave your neighbor. Once you win more than six plants before you start the level you have to choose the plants you would like to use for that level. So strategy comes into play when deciding what plants to choose for that particular level. Each level has its own obstacles to overcome so choosing your plants that work best with each other can either mean total zombie annihilation or zombie invasion. After you complete stage one you unlock Crazy Dave?s Shop. Where you can buy upgrades to plants that you win at the end of levels. These plants (weapons) are stronger than the previous plants. However, the stronger plants require more sun to plant.
There is no real scoring either locally or globally. Though there are several achievements in the game that you could work towards in getting. You can get ?Home Lawn Security? Achievement by completing the Adventure mode. You could also get ?Alive and Planting? by Surviving 40 waves of pure zombie ferocity. Another one you could get is ?Explodonator? by taking out 10 Full-Sized zombies with a single cherry bomb. There is a total of 17 achievements in the game.
There is one new addition to PvZ exclusively for the iPad; a mini game called ?Buttered Popcorn?. In this mode, you need to touch zombies to place butter on their heads before attacking with corncob cannons. Place your plants along the various paths in your yard, roof, or wherever to prevent the zombies from getting all the way to the end of field where they try to get into your house. I can say that this game was meant for the iPad long before it was created. The fact of being able to touch the game to interact with it makes this game all the more fun and extremely hard to put down.
With the large screen of the iPad it makes the game a lot easier to play than on the iPhone, especially when you have large hordes of zombies attacking you. The user interface for selecting the defenses is at the top like in the desktop version, whereas, on the iPhone it was off the to left of the screen. The game allows up to 11 touch points at the same time. Just imagine the hilarity that could come from that.
The game looks absolutely stunning on the iPad. The colors are very detailed and rich. Everything is very polished and very well put together. The game would immediately catch your eye if you were to pass by someone playing the game.
The touch screen is very accurate and a lot faster than with a mouse or on a small screen like the iPhone. Plants vs. Zombies uses the full resolution of the iPad, which makes it easy to look at.
The background music is the same throughout the entire game. However that is not to say that is bad. The music, though the same, sounds crisp and clear. The sound FX sounds very realistic, well as realistic as Zombies and Peashooters can be. Unfortunately, you cannot play your own iPod music.
This is the Third reiteration of Plants vs. Zombies, but it is the best one. If you can use a finger and a bit of strategy you will find this game fun for all ages. The zombie and plants twist is unique and creative game design. It does have a good replay value once you beat the adventure. However, if you want a quick fix, survival will do that for you. It is a great buy, definitely worth the money for the game.
Ratings (scale of 1 to 5):
Graphics: - 5 - Uses full resolution of the iPad makes it very eye catching. Sound: - 4 - Repetitious music background music however the sound FX is very realistic.
Controls: - 5 - No real set controls, mainly use your finger. Plus you can touch it up 11 times simultaneously. Gameplay: - 4 - Gameplay is amazingly easy to get into and stay addicted to. The serious hardcore tower defense players might not find a lot of replay value.
Playing Hints and Tips:
-Chompers and Wall-nuts work exceedingly well together. -You want two columns of sunflowers. -Snorkel Zombies... are best dealt with, with Wall-nuts on Lilypads.