244 Comments
Edited by Sweetz

@ilikepopcans: Whatever positive argument you can make for the game is unfortunately rendered moot by the fact that it's obviously engineered in such a way that they would encourage you to pay $100+ on a game that should be no more than $20.

Posted by StraightGrizzly

@squirrelgod: I think the game you are talking about is the upcoming PvZ: Garden Warfare which is coming to consoles and PC. It is a polygonal third person tower defense game, the one they announced at E3

Edited by Pr1mus

Pay more so you can play less!

Really fantastic value.

I don't care so much that you can spend money but i do care about the obscene amount they are charging for something that should be at most a 20$ game.

Edited by Sesquipedaliant

As much as I love their Quick Looks, they do this for every FTP game, complain about everything that's "possible" to buy without doing any research first. It would take a few minutes before the video to look this stuff up before assuming the worst.

Edited by Castiel

I thought this was supposed to be like a polygonol action game?

This will probably already have been answered by this time but what the heck. What you are talking about is a different Plants vs. Zombies game called Garden Warfare.

Posted by OtterChaos

Not a fan of F2P games but I find it a bit jarring to listen to Brad rant about it after seeing him spend real money on keys in DOTA2. Sure you can state your opinion but the level of disgust he seems to have for the system in PvZ2 plays false in my ears after seeing the DOTA2 spending. While the DOTA2 stuff is cosmetic items and PvZ2 lets you advance the game quicker, nowhere did I see that you had to buy items in PvZ to get farther in the game, it will just take more time.

Posted by Mumrik

I thought this was supposed to be like a polygonol action game?

This isn't even the PC version. Also, more than one PvZ game in the pipeline.

Edited by claybrez

Show me 10 deals better than that one. Best deal.

Edited by Metric_Outlaw

@zevvion said:

@metric_outlaw said:

This game is totally fine. I've almost beaten it in a few hours and haven't spent a cent. It's still PvZ and its still fun. Don't assume because its free to play that it's horrible and unbeatable.

Maybe I'm 'too old' to get free to play, but I generally dislike the entire atmosphere surrounding those games. I love video games and gladly pay for them. But I feel the creator, perhaps on some level, should appreciate that I like his game and pay to play it. That's what I love about some of the indie devs. They actually seem excited that people are playing their game. Not just that they get money out of it.

With free to play, all I see is a constant stream of possible charges in my face. We're not talking small charges either. It's not pay 5 cents to progress to the next world. It's pay 5 bucks... bucks. Fuck. This entire game is worth 5 bucks. Maybe.

And yes, I know stuff like the 99 dollar (...) transactions are optional. But just the fact that it's there, that they are hoping I'll pay it, that they put it in my face trying to persuade me it's the 'best deal' is disgusting. I'm actually offended by this stuff. Then again, free to play has never, ever seemed like a good deal to me.

Brad was overreacting about that. You really don't need to pay $5. You're paying $5 to not play the game. You can go through the entire game and have an awesome time for free.

I totally understand how you feel about the atmosphere though. It does feel gross to that you can skip or cheat the entire if you have a big enough bank account.

You shouldn't be so dismissive of something as broad as all free to play games. If you enjoyed the first game then play this. Dismiss the game because of the gameplay, not because you don't like free to play.

Edited by SilverTorch1

@ilikepopcans: Woah, calm down man. Just because you don't mind F2P bullshit doesn't mean everyone has to be okay with it.

Posted by Agnosticwatermelon

I uninstalled after the second world. The game has the nerve to treat stars as currency (they disappear after you unlock the world) and then have the next gate be double the amount of stars. Imagine if in mario 64 the game took all your stars to get to the next set of levels and made you go back and grind twice as hard to get to the set after that.

Edited by kerikxi

Free to play can be done right. This isn't. A pay model should contribute meaningfully to the game. This is selling cheat codes.

Edited by sp0rkeh

@agnosticwatermelon said:

I uninstalled after the second world. The game has the nerve to treat stars as currency (they disappear after you unlock the world) and then have the next gate be double the amount of stars. Imagine if in mario 64 the game took all your stars to get to the next set of levels and made you go back and grind twice as hard to get to the set after that.

This is just a matter of how they choose to display it. They could have just as easily let you keep your 15 stars and instead set the second gate cost to 45 stars.

Posted by ilovebees

All the free to play stuff aside, this game just seems super boring and tedious.

Edited by Sweetz

@otterchaos said:

nowhere did I see that you had to buy items in PvZ to get farther in the game, it will just take more time.

Which is the case with most F2P games - that doesn't make it acceptable or mean it shouldn't be criticized. Would you agree that it's valid to criticize a typical AAA retail game for excessive repetition? Most F2P game's are structured in such way that you either suffer through excessive repetition to advance, or you pay; as such, they don't respect your time or enjoyment as a free player. That's ok as long as the value proposition on what you pay for makes sense and you're not asked or encouraged to pay more than the fair value for the game to make it entertaining. When the value proposition does not sense, the game should rightly be criticized.

Despite the complainers here, Brad did not just say "microtransactions, ewwww", he called into question whether the game was asking too much to get to avoid excessive, non-entertaining repetition. Yes that's a subjective judgement - as is any editorializing of any entertainment medium. Maybe you're fine playing levels twice or three times over, some people certainly are not. How much do those people have to pay to make the game fun? How much would they expect to pay up front for game offering the same overall level of content and entertainment value? If these numbers are very different, then there IS problem.

Personally I wouldn't expect to pay more than $20 for a game like PvZ2 - the fact that they even allow you to spend 5 times that on one just one single facet of the game is a red flag.

Now regarding comparisons to DOTA 2: DOTA 2 items have absolutely zero effect on how the game plays or how you play the game. A player's enjoyment of DOTA 2 may be enhanced by the cosmetic items, but it's not possible that person who doesn't enjoy playing DOTA would suddenly start enjoying it if they bought a hat. The items you can buy in that game do not change the game. You can not say the same about PvZ2 or other F2Ps. They are players who would tire of the repetition required when spending nothing, but would enjoy the game if it had an up front price and a more typical rate of progression for introducing new/different challenges and mechanics. Spending money on these games can and does make a difference between enjoying it and not enjoying it - and that's fine; again the question is do you have to spend too much.

Posted by Prestige

I agree Brad was being a bit too harsh... to theoretical physicist Dr. Michio Kaku.

Edited by ryanwhom

The risk of this model, where you can forego the time spent by paying more, is you're sort of admitting your game is kind of shitty, like "here pay us to play less of the game". I could save both time and money by just skipping it completely. And I loved the first one, but its amazing what a shitshow the market has become in the interim time. The idea that you have to complete the main world before getting the option to earn stars to unlock the next world, that's some Xbox 1 level of corporate engineering. They must think consumers are really stupid and I guess consumers are really stupid because a bunch of *free EA games are the highest grossing at the Android app store and I'm sure this'll make a dent too when it comes out.

Edited by Stimpack

I'd rather pay the $4.99 this game is worth and unlock everything.

Edited by Bummey

Keys and Stars do not carry over between levels, and you can only get one star each time you replay a level. You have to replay a level 3 times, in addition to the first time, to get all 3 stars.

Posted by SasquatchRuby

Realm of the Mad Gods had a f2p model that worked very well I thought. It can be done. This looks cynical.

Edited by fishmicmuffin

@brad I was as upset as you when they talked about replaying the levels, but the challenges they add for each of the 3 stars were actually pretty fun. Things like "don't spend more than 1250 sun" and "kill 5 zombies within 5 seconds as well as earn 2750 sun total" lead to different playstyles than I was normally used to. On the 1250 sun challenge you can build like 4 or 5 sunflowers before building towers, which I would never have even considered normally... but it worked out.

Edited by Dredlockz

@totaboy said:

And when will this Free To Play trend finally end?

I'm hoping it's already dying. At least from social network platforms, like facebook, they are all closing down. Zynga and Digital Chocolate have had major studio closure and lay-offs.

Right now there seems to be still a market for it in tablets and mobile, but im hoping that will die off eventually too, people fall for those skinner box tactics once or twice, but never again.

The true Free to Play business models like Dota2 (where everything is free and unlocked, and they just monetize on vanity items) will start prevailing.

At least I hope so :(

Posted by Haruko

I've played this the last two days, pretty fun. Some people are raging over F2P. It seems beatable without paying a dime. But I probably won't play it for more than 20 hours, wherever that leaves me.

Beatable does not mean complete.

Edited by christ0phe

Brad is way too dismissive of this game because of the micro-transactions. Who cares if you can pay to unlock the next level? It's your prerogative as a user. If you'd rather just unlock the next level by playing, do that instead. This game seems perfectly playable without any micro-transactions. I also find it frustrating that Brad constantly pontificates about DOTA, which is full of micro-transactions itself.

Posted by ManiacMaysin

BEST DEAL!

Posted by LordAndrew

If you pay to unlock the first gate, doesn't that put you at a disadvantage? You haven't collected the required fifteen stars, so you're going to have to pay to unlock the next gate too. Unless you go back and play all the levels that you already paid to skip.

That's not really be how it works, is it?

Edited by Ares42

30 minutes of bitching about f2p. It's good to see that not all of the GB guys are above some good old fashioned customer outrage =)

Edited by Antihippy

@christ0phe: Whose microtransactions are completely cosmetic, and everything that relates to playing the game is entirely free.

Edited by Ronald

I only have two problems with the QL. One, always be planting! I wanted to tap the screen to get a plant into position when a zombie would be halfway across the yard. Two, Brad not pressing the "Save and Quit" button and instead going to the next level and then backing out causing him to lose all of his progress.

On F2P, if there are people who want to pay for items in the game, let them. I won't, but I have spent about $20 on a Conpendium and pennants for Dota 2 because I wanted to throw something in for Valve and for the teams playing in TI 3. My brother put over $50 into Mass Effect 3 to get a playable race which I thought was crazy, but when he asked for his birthday I bought him a $50 X-Box Live point card last year he used on that and this year I bought him a $20 LoL card because he loves that game and doesn't mind paying for heroes. He's also spent money on World of Tanks but he's played so much of it to justify the cost vs buying Call of Duty for $60 and playing it for 10 hours.

Online
Posted by JustinAquarius

"it's the best deal... for them."

Posted by EndlessMike

@christ0phe: I think the very obvious problem was that the stars required to unlock the next level involved replaying a bunch of the old levels you've already completed. Meaning unless you want constant repetition you have to pay real money.

Posted by Mr_Misery

@milkman said:

Stop defending awful business practices. You're the reason this exists.

People with bad impulse control are the reason these games exist. Judging by the revenue some of these F2P companies make these business practices are brilliant.

Edited by ProfessorEss

@artof_war said:

I've played this the last two days, pretty fun. Some people are raging over F2P. It seems beatable without paying a dime. But I probably won't play it for more than 20 hours, wherever that leaves me.

So far nothing but fun here. And that's coming from someone expecting the worst. I'll get back to you all when I hit the potential 50-60 hour mark.

I'm still watching... but it sounds like this game may have been misrepresented.

Posted by HerbieBug
Posted by Viking_Funeral

I would have paid 10-20$ for a legit PVZ sequel.

Same here.

EA is really run by people who have no interest in playing games, isn't it? Like they say in a lot of industries, you have to eat the dog food.

Edited by xR3COx

This game came out like a month ago in Australia, great game but i really wished it wasnt a free to play game. half of the game is unbalanced to make you spend coins on plant food or special powers to get you out of a tight jam, and some plants are just straight up purchase in store only and cant unlock later. For some reason my ipad version is different and i needed to earn ALL 40 stars in each world before i could unlock the stargate to the next world where my iphone version only needed 15 stars...I had a some fun playing this game but im fairly disapointed in how this game turned out

Edited by mithhunter55

Not like its story based or anything, it will be out eventually. Looks to me like its not worth it anyways. I'll stick with bejeweled. :P

Still can't believe the sequel to Plants vs Zombies is a mobile game. The original was only for computers when it first came out. I guess times are a changing. Plus the whole EA thing. I must be getting old, I still prefer PC games over console games and console games over mobile games.

Posted by thejke

Yuck.

Posted by Kordesh

And this is why PopCap became dead to me when EA acquired them. This is some EA ass EA stuff going on in here. F2P can work, and EA continues to give sterling examples of the worst aspects of it.

Posted by eccentrix

@ilikepopcans: It didn't really explain much about extra challenges. Brad just doesn't appreciate being told "Now play it again to unlock the next part!"

Posted by Brad

If you pay to unlock the first gate, doesn't that put you at a disadvantage? You haven't collected the required fifteen stars, so you're going to have to pay to unlock the next gate too. Unless you go back and play all the levels that you already paid to skip.

That's not really be how it works, is it?

Word on the street is that stars and keys you collect in one world don't carry over to the next, so the way it works is actually even worse!

Staff
Edited by Chuck_

@prestige said:

I agree Brad was being a bit too harsh... to theoretical physicist Dr. Michio Kaku.

media whore!

Posted by Agnosticwatermelon

@brad said:

@lordandrew said:

If you pay to unlock the first gate, doesn't that put you at a disadvantage? You haven't collected the required fifteen stars, so you're going to have to pay to unlock the next gate too. Unless you go back and play all the levels that you already paid to skip.

That's not really be how it works, is it?

Word on the street is that stars and keys you collect in one world don't carry over to the next, so the way it works is actually even worse!

The stars that you didn't spend carry over but the next gate has double the required stars. So either grind twice the amount or pay them another $5 so you can get the opportunity to grind 4 times the amount of the first gate or pay yet another $5

Edited by ILikePopCans

Sad to see like half the commenter just dismissed this game flat out just because it is F2P, but I'm guessing you guys have not play too many F2P games (at least on Mobile) so the look at a F2P game, even a good one, is off putting since it is different. Very different.

The paying model of get the game free and the publisher hoping you will buy something while playing it is completely different than the model it was before F2P happen. So I can see how having the option to pay to go to the next section and the option to buy useless coins and the option to buy keys that you will get plenty of anyways may seem off putting. But even if you have the option it does not mean you need or should pay for anything.

What makes a good F2P model is how much you feel pressure, do to difficulty/time most of the time, to spend your bucks in the game. PvZ 2 is a GOOD F2P because you don't feel pressure to buy anything because the difficulty is never too hard (I find the game too easy mostly and when I do hit hard spots I would always find the strategy I need to beat it) and there is no time penalty in this game.

I also find unlocking the next section silly because the levels you need to beat "again" (I found little differences between levels anyways so I don't see why replaying them is so bad) have added challenges to them to spice them up so skipping it seems silly.

Yes there are plants you can only get for buying with realz moniez, but I feel like there is enough plants in the game for free already and don't feel the desire to buy them. I can see how people might not like it, especially with the high prices of 3 and 4 cheddars, and this really comes down to personally opinion whether you feel like their is enough plants in the free game.

Sorry for the long post, but the quick look really pissed me off. The fact is, this game has a GOOD F2P model and Brad not seeing that made me upset (see my earlier post to see the anger itself).

Posted by cthomer5000

@drekly said:

@mrlog:

@mrlog said:

@ilikepopcans said:

There goes brad not knowing what he is talking about. Yes it is free to play and you can buy coins and other stuff, BUT JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING IN THE GAME IS UNLOCKED WITHOUT PAYING FOR IT.

Brad is bitching about paying for coins and I never once thought about paying for them, and I think they are pointless. I got enough keys to unlock all the doors earlier on in the first section and that will probably be true in the next section and never felt like I needed to pay for them. Brad is bitching about having to grid the levels to get stars when you can pay to go forward, but if you like the game than playing through the levels (which add challenges to get the stars) is not a bad thing.

Brad should realize that this is a great free to play game in the mobile marker because it DOES NOT REQUIRE YOU TO PAY FOR ANYTHING AND JUST BECAUSE THEY OFFER YOU TO BUY SOMETHING IT DOES NOT MEAN YOU SHOULD OR HAVE TO.

Brad comes off as a ignorant person and should stop comparing mobile comes to consoles. Worst part is I'm really enjoying this game and I'm sad people might think this is bad.

I completely agree, Brad's so stuck on the anti-micro transaction train that it's frustrating to hear.

He literally HAS to have spent the most money on micro-transaction games of any staff member, right?*

You have no point.

*Well, unless you include Game Room.

Edited by ThreeRoneC

Played lots of the first one when I was on the train to work, I'll pick this up and play it too!

Edited by BaconGames

The only bummer about this quick look and the reaction general is that there are things about this game worth criticizing, and ways to present them that talk about the design of the game and how it would work outside of F2P. I feel like they're capable and have been able to do that in the past but here it feels a bit more like dismissal than anything.

I think the real point to make is that despite being a well designed F2P game, it still has those design elements so explicit and keyed into an alternative option of progression, that it's still not as satisfying as paying once and having the game. So yeah, one part wants me to defend this game for being a good example of F2P but the other parts still would prefer a regular pay once version on PC. I just don't see the need for categorical dismissals. I mean you have to know that the people who made this game knew it had to be F2P and did what they could to walk that tightrope and I think they did a great job here. But I think they know more than anyone, especially right now, that wanted PvZ2 not to step out into the world as a F2P game.

I wonder how much this problem could have been alleviated by having two versions, one F2P another full price. However any alternatives to this might have to implicate the entire design of the game which I find kinda fascinating to think about. Would a pay once version have made a F2P version more invasive? Is the world paywall simply a matter of presentation? Does the world map design need heavy revisions to make it work non-F2P? I would love to hear more about that.

Edited by Draxyle

Even if you can play all the way through without engaging in micro-transactions, the way they shove these crazy "deals" at you all the time is a huge pet peeve of mine in modern gaming. It makes the experience feel shallow when you're constantly introduced to real live currency inside the confines of a videogame.

I know they gotta make money, but when any individual thing in your game costs more than what would be a regular market value for the full game, you're being exploitative.