244 Comments
Edited by Cybexx

To be fair to Plants vs Zombies 2 the F2P aspects of this game are reasonable assuming you don't frivolously spend money on coins, which you don't need.

So as a value proposition you are getting the first 3rd of the game for free. The 2nd and 3rd areas are $5 each. Plants vs Zombies on PC was $20 and Plants vs Zombies HD for iPad was $10 when it launched about a year later (It initially just launched with the campaign and later added the additional modes in updates). So if you don't want to do the challenges you are essentially paying the same amount of money you would have to buy the iPad version of the PvZ when it launched (I think the iPhone version was $7). You can also download it on both platforms with cloud syncing (The number of times I've replayed through the first 2/3rds of PvZ on multiple platforms is ridiculous).

All the upgrades and every plant except for one can be unlocked through those alternate paths on the map that you need keys for and the drop rate on keys is okay.

Brad miss-read the message when he finished the last Egypt level it said:

  • Access to the Pyramid of Doom!
  • 24 more stars attainable in Ancient Egypt!
  • Star Gate available for the Pirate Seas!

There are no stars available in the Pyramid of Doom, it is just an additional mode. You do need to replay previous levels to unlock some of those stars but the challenges are kind of cool (stop the zombies from advancing past of certain line, only use certain plants, ect...). It seems to me if you want a longer more challenging game you can decide to play more PvZ2 or you can pay the amount the original game was asking and only play new levels.

On an interesting aside, this game launched in China 2 weeks ago and that version is apparently way harder, locks a lot of plants and upgrades behind pay-only walls and the pay walls are more expensive. It seems like China got the nightmare micro-transaction version of the game and we got the version with reasonable consumer choice.

I am super interested to see what happens when they launch this game on PC.

Edited by HerbieBug

Watch the ending and get the highest possible score on the leaderboards without having to actually play the game: $1000 <--- Bestest Dealio!

Edited by taemun
@herbiebug said:

Watch the ending and get the highest possible score on the leaderboards without having to actually play the game: $1000 <--- Bestest Dealio!

I'm happy to project that a theoretical $1000 coin pack would have 6,000,000 coins in it, based on the increments up to that point. Maybe they can bundle something with it (as you've suggested), but I wouldn't bet on it.

Posted by HerbieBug
Posted by amishmonster

Oh man, I'm glad Brad shares my opinion of Michio Kaku.

Posted by porousshield

I played the game up to where Brad ended up and I had nearly the same reaction he did. $4.99 is a lot to pay to go on to the next level especially when the game offers very little above and beyond the first game. I tried going back and getting the stars but I just don't want to play the levels over. If the price were $2.99 I'd go for it but this just seems like the same game but behind paywalls and more grinding.

Edited by NoelVeiga

@fargofallout said:

Granted, the stars are obtained through challenges, so it's sort of different from the first time I played through the levels, but they're still the same levels.

But... it's Plants vs Zombies. "Levels" only means which types of zombies you get, really. The first game only had one environment and I don't remember any complaints that you "couldn't progress" there.

It's like people think they're owed the next visual skin for the game just because it's there. The first chapter has roughly as much content as the story mode in the first game, which there was just a tutorial for the endless mode and the mini games, both of which are also available for free here.

I replayed the first PvZ multiple times and that didn't feel like "grinding", it was just playing the game. Since it's so driven by its mechanics, it doesn't feel as repetitive as replaying a story-driven game.

@ozzie said:

I think I wasn't really offended till the end where you could spend $100 to get coins....

That microtransaction tier has been in every single F2P game I've played on iOS this year. If it's microtransaction-based, 60-100$ is the consensus on where to cap the coin packs.

@suits said:

Should be pretty obvious. In SM64 you approach a certain world differently for each star, tackling different areas and monsters in them. In PvZ2 you are just redoing the exact same waves.

Nope, waves are the same, but objectives are different. It really IS pretty similar to Mario 64. Only, you know, Mario was like 70 bucks up front.

But mostly it's interesting to me that it's like PvZ 1, where you paid up front. Really, that game had you replay game modes as well, and the Zen Garden was at least as grindy as this. Nobody complained. This is knee-jerky hatred for F2P and nothing else.

@zemial said:

It's a quick look not a review, calm down.

So why are they passing judgement on these things without understanding what they are? They get the plant unlocks wrong and they get the level unlocks wrong. In the space of the QL Brad finds himself taking back his opinions on both the keys and the plants, and the one element that he keeps complaining about he has misunderstood. I don't mind them not fully understanding a game before QL-ing it, but if Brad decides to make the whole thing about how the monetization scheme sucks even before he starts the QL he should at least check that the monetization actually sucks.

As it is, this felt like being exposed to half an hour of forum nerd rage. I can get that elsewhere.

Online
Edited by falpatrick

@hatking: Except that Dota 2 doesn't put any actual content behind a pay wall. It's just cosmetic stuff.

@hatking said:

@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.

Yeah, Brad totally fucking dismisses any games with micro-transactions before giving them a chance. It's really annoying because I feel like if he gave games like that a chance he might really enjoy one. Maybe even so much that he starts a daily feature where he plays one obsessively for the past few months.

Except that Dota 2 doesn't put any actual content behind a pay wall. It's just cosmetic stuff.

YOU are the ignorant one if you don't see the difference.

Edited by atomic_dumpling
Otherwise the whole thing feels a bit disingenuous, especially on a site that, you know, gates content behind a pay wall.

Excellent point, actually.

Edited by afterland

@suits said:

@afterland said:

I fail to see how this game's star mechanic is any different than Super Mario 64.

The microtransaction outrage is really overblown.

Should be pretty obvious. In SM64 you approach a certain world differently for each star, tackling different areas and monsters in them. In PvZ2 you are just redoing the exact same waves.

It's been pointed out but no, it's same level, different objectives. No different than collect 7 red coins, collect 100 coins, beat the boss, etc. which a player must do to get the pieces he or she needs to progress. The whole issue seems to be people are outraged that a game offers shortcuts for cash, even though it is completely optional. It's especially bizarre coming from the GB crew since they revere arcade machines which were literally the first wave of microtransactions.

I'm just kind of baffled by people who would rather pay one lump sum rather than play at all. The game is free.

Posted by Sykdom

You certainly don't have to grind for stars, nor do you have to struggle to get keys either in my experience.

Edited by TinyGrasshopper

They really should have gone into one of those levels to show how getting the stars actually works. To get a star, it's not just replaying the levels like in angry birds. You have to replay each level with progressively harder level modifiers to get each star which is good and bad.

That's pretty cool that its not exactly the same thing but to get three stars you have to replay a level 3 TIMES. The modifiers are fun the first time, but that 3rd star is usually hard enough to not be worth my time.

Posted by NekuSakuraba

I'd prefer if this was just a PC game that cost like $10 and had no micro-transactions, just like the first game.

Well, if one good thing did come out of this quick look, it's that I'm playing the original PvZ again!

Posted by MeatSim

This game doesn't seem like the best deal despite all the stuff that's labeled best deal.

Posted by Rafaelfc

I wish every free to play game failed HARD and in app purchases were banned as the vile, money grubbing strategy it is.

Simply disgusting. This and superfluous dlc (skins, clothes, guns, etc) are the most infuriating thing going on in gaming at the moment, by far.

Edited by kkotd

People seem so split on this game and for all the wrong reasons. Some people are freaking out on the Micro-transactions immediately, others on the having to replay the game. If you were good at the first game, you won't have a single problem. If you're having trouble, the coins give you a bit of a boost when you need it and you can farm those.

Posted by DoctorWelch

I'd rather pay $15, $20, even $25 and have a complete game without all the bullshit rather than play this piece or garbage.

Posted by NorthernBoreus

It's crazy to me that Brad can complete every single Iron Challenge in Kingdom Rush but scoffs at the idea of completing challenges for stars in Plants vs Zombies. He admits to enjoying the gameplay, so I really don't understand why he thinks it is a bad thing to be asked to play more of it.

And Vinny talking about how he wishes he could spend money in order to spend less time playing? If he wanted to not play the game, that is free.

I used to enter in cheat codes that would allow me to skip levels in all kinds of games, but I never got mad because I had to look the codes up and the game didn't just automatically send me to the final boss. Being upset that the game charges money to skip to the end seems crazy to me, because why would anyone want to skip to the end in the first place? I wouldn't pay an extra $5 in the original Plants vs Zombies to skip half the gameplay, so why would I do it here? The microtransactions aren't locking away all the content behind a paywall, they're just exploiting people that have more money than sense, and would rather "beat" a game than actually play it.

Edited by FLYmeatwad

I don't get the bundles comment that they are "these random Gamestop bundles where you get some stuff but you don't get to choose what's what" that Brad makes. Does Gamestop have bundles like that? I know they have XB1 and PS4 'bundles' that are the same price as a console and game, but you know what game you get. This seems more like an EA Sports character pack or a Disney Infinity Power Disc bundle than any bundle Gamestop produces.

Edited by Budwyzer

Brad, the stars aren't hard to get and they change the levels.

No they don't. All they do is force you to play the level over again for no reason other than to get a star, and all it changes is adding a combination of a maximum 2 of a possible 5 objectives, that stay the same 5 possible objectives throughout the whole game.

Completely grindy and I had to actually force myself to sit down and finish this game. NOT the case with the first PvZ.

Posted by Ulong

I'd buy plants vs zombies 2 and play the shit out of it. I have zero interest in a f2p gamae with obnoxious cash shop options and shit. I just want to pay for the game and have it.

Posted by Colourful_Hippie

Now I'm extremely worried about Peggle 2....

Posted by TheGorilla

This game seems gross.

Posted by RenegadeSaint

This game is free and and fun to play. Why is everyone up in arms? Does this threaten the way you play games? Does change scare you? Are you unable to stop yourself from making impulse purchases?

I find the overblown reactions of Brad and many of the commentors here quite ridiculous.

Posted by personz

so as far as I can tell the game locks you out of certain plants without a pay wall. At least for now anyways as the "future" stage isn't even in the game yet. Sad thing is for less than the cost of a single plant in this game you can buy plants vs zombies 1 which has much more content and in my opinion is actually a much better game than this.

Posted by beatnik11

I understand that F2P games need to make money somehow, but this game just seems scummy. It doesnt matter that you have to play the levels at a slightly harder level, the whole idea that you are not done even though you cleared the level is disrespectful of your time. It doesnt help that this looks like a $5 game at most and yet most of the micro transactions are almost that much or more.

Edited by Strabo

The game is about the fairest F2P game I've seen yet. It requires you to play the game to progress. Big deal, that's why I fired up the game in the first place. It's not grind-y, it's not unfair, it allows you to play the full game without paying a dime and without getting annoyed about having to do "another x levels to get to the next part". You get easily more coins than you need to fire off some specials here and there the keys drop very frequently and the stars are rather easy to get. Calling this game scummy boggles my mind. I mean, I paid 10 bucks for PvZ for PC back in the day and I got far, far less than I got here for zero bucks.

Only thing I would complain about is that you don't get all plants without paying money, some of them being plants that were included in PvZ. But the plants you can buy are generally not really needed and you usually have far more plants to choose from than you really use, with always unlocking more.

Edited by technomalogical

I fail to see how this game's star mechanic is any different than Super Mario 64.

The microtransaction outrage is really overblown.

This. I hadn't made the connection before you said it, but this is exactly how the mechanic works.

Edited by Phawks

I love how everyone is jumping on the "lol Brad haets F2P" bandwagon when both Vinny and Drew agree with him. Vinny is probably even more hurt about the paywall.

Edited by Abendlaender

God damn, the music is putting me to sleep

Edit: I'm AMAZED how many people try to defend this. It's not that they lock stuff behind a paywall (which I guess they don't accoring to the fine folks here) but that they try to annoy you to a point where you just spend money on it. Saying "Oh, you COULD play the same levels over and over again to unlock the next fucking level of this game but....I may have some quicker option for you" IS NOT GOOD GAMEDESIGN. I shouldn't have to play missions that I've already beaten again to advance.

"Oh but it's free" well, fuck that I'd rather have a non-grinding, non-boring game for which I pay money than a game that seems to be designed around the idea of being as annoying and slow as possible to keep you from making progress.

Posted by Zevvion

@afterland said:

I fail to see how this game's star mechanic is any different than Super Mario 64.

The microtransaction outrage is really overblown.

This. I hadn't made the connection before you said it, but this is exactly how the mechanic works.

Super Mario 64 didn't have microtransactions. You're missing the point.

Super Mario 64 was about collecting stars in a level. If you missed the star, you did something terribly wrong. Levels pretty much ended with you collecting the star. That's entirely different from being unable to obtain any stars by progressing normally through the game and only afterwards getting the message you need them. Furthermore, what's disgusting is the progression blocker that's implemented with the intent of persuading you to pay to proceed.

Super Mario 64 only stopped you from accessing levels beyond the number of stars you had. It did not hide the stars behind challenges - if you progressed you got the stars - and it did not try to make you pay to proceed. I'm not sure how you guys came to the Super Mario 64 comparison, because that's not even close to being the same thing.

Edited by CharAznable

@zevvion said:

@technomalogical said:

@afterland said:

I fail to see how this game's star mechanic is any different than Super Mario 64.

The microtransaction outrage is really overblown.

This. I hadn't made the connection before you said it, but this is exactly how the mechanic works.

Super Mario 64 didn't have microtransactions. You're missing the point.

Super Mario 64 was about collecting stars in a level. If you missed the star, you did something terribly wrong. Levels pretty much ended with you collecting the star. That's entirely different from being unable to obtain any stars by progressing normally through the game and only afterwards getting the message you need them. Furthermore, what's disgusting is the progression blocker that's implemented with the intent of persuading you to pay to proceed.

Super Mario 64 only stopped you from accessing levels beyond the number of stars you had. It did not hide the stars behind challenges - if you progressed you got the stars - and it did not try to make you pay to proceed. I'm not sure how you guys came to the Super Mario 64 comparison, because that's not even close to being the same thing.

Have you actually played the game, dude? PvZ2 does not make you pay to proceed. At all. That is an option if you feel like it, but the other option is to play through the levels again with new constraints and challenges to earn stars that will unlock the next level.

I'm in the third world now, with around 10-15 hours spent in the game so far, having spent absolutely nothing on the game. You're getting all worked up over nothing.

Online
Edited by afterland

@zevvion said:

@technomalogical said:

@afterland said:

I fail to see how this game's star mechanic is any different than Super Mario 64.

The microtransaction outrage is really overblown.

This. I hadn't made the connection before you said it, but this is exactly how the mechanic works.

Super Mario 64 didn't have microtransactions. You're missing the point.

Super Mario 64 was about collecting stars in a level. If you missed the star, you did something terribly wrong. Levels pretty much ended with you collecting the star. That's entirely different from being unable to obtain any stars by progressing normally through the game and only afterwards getting the message you need them. Furthermore, what's disgusting is the progression blocker that's implemented with the intent of persuading you to pay to proceed.

Super Mario 64 only stopped you from accessing levels beyond the number of stars you had. It did not hide the stars behind challenges - if you progressed you got the stars - and it did not try to make you pay to proceed. I'm not sure how you guys came to the Super Mario 64 comparison, because that's not even close to being the same thing.

Except none of the things you're disgusted by are actually present in the game. I went with Mario because Brad mentioned Super Mario World, but really it could be any Nintendo game, basically.

Posted by clush

God damn, the music is putting me to sleep

Edit: I'm AMAZED how many people try to defend this.

My guess is that those people have actually played the game, and the rest is jumping on the EA hate train.

My experience is that there's hardly anything that's actually paywalled. What you're paying for are mostly shortcuts and it is very much possible to unlock all the levels and almost all the plants without any serious grind.

The prices they're asking are a bit outrageous, though. However, since you really don't have to buy anything to enjoy 95% of the game, this isn't actually a problem.

Posted by Abendlaender
@clush said:


The prices they're asking are a bit outrageous, though. However, since you really don't have to buy anything to enjoy 95% of the game, this isn't actually a problem.

It is a problem if you have to replay 75% of the game to finish it...

Posted by clush

@clush said:


The prices they're asking are a bit outrageous, though. However, since you really don't have to buy anything to enjoy 95% of the game, this isn't actually a problem.

It is a problem if you have to replay 75% of the game to finish it...

Which is not the case. You don't replay anything. Every normal level provides three challenge levels (which are really nothing like the original level gameplay wise) and each of those give a star.

It's not like you have to get a certain score in a level to get 3 stars and that they willfully kept those from you the first time round.

I guess you could still call it grinding, but really it doesn't take too long to get the required number of stars. On top of that, in my opinion the challenge levels are the most interesting part of the game by a long shot.

Posted by clush

http://www.edge-online.com/review/plants-vs-zombies-2-its-about-time-review/

http://www.edge-online.com/features/inside-plants-vs-zombies-2-the-popcap-sequel-with-a-point-to-prove/

Edited by NoelVeiga
@clush said:

http://www.edge-online.com/review/plants-vs-zombies-2-its-about-time-review/

http://www.edge-online.com/features/inside-plants-vs-zombies-2-the-popcap-sequel-with-a-point-to-prove/

Yeah. In fact, right now, PvZ2 has a higher score on Metacritic than Saints Row IV.

I'm not joking, this is true:

http://www.metacritic.com/game/pc/saints-row-iv

http://www.metacritic.com/game/ios/plants-vs-zombies-2-its-about-time

Metacritic may not be the be-all-end-all of deciding if a game is good, but... yeah, that means something.

@phawks said:

I love how everyone is jumping on the "lol Brad haets F2P" bandwagon when both Vinny and Drew agree with him. Vinny is probably even more hurt about the paywall.

Vinny is only hurt because Brad assumes the game makes you replay the same levels, which isn't true. Brad never checks the stars to see what they are, so he never finds out that they're not really "the same levels", they're challenge levels with different objectives.

Vinny is only outraged because Brad tells him you have to buy keys (and then has to admit they drop often) and you have to buy plants (which then he realizes you don't) and that you have to pay to progress or replay the same levels (which isn't true and they never check).

Online
Posted by ipaqi

If Dave went to the past and ate the taco, it would simply create an alternate timeline where Dave never got to eat that taco and never took up time travel.

There's always a man. There's always a van. There's always a taco.

Edited by Molenator85

It seems like the comment section has pretty thoroughly corrected or countered a lot of what what said in the Quick Look, but my main concern with the criticism of PvZ 2 thus far are complaints of grinding. There are about as many plants in PvZ 1 that required grinding, as plants (5) in this game that are locked behind key doors and available for purchase directly. Grinding out the 20K for Cob Cannon was tedious even in a properly set up Survival mode, and the best way to get the cash was to use the Zen Garden, which was barely a game. I was able to access all of the for-purchase plants purely through keys gained in playing the star levels which put interesting spins on the mechanics of the game, instead of forcing you to engage in much more tedious grinding.

@ipaqi Dave is a Christ surrogate, think about it.

Posted by mlarrabee

Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time, and Time is Money, so Really, It's About Money.

Posted by PhilipDuck

Ahh this games alright, the money pop ups are expected when you get the game for free.. It's a good little game for before bed or when your out bored somewhere. F2P isn't all that bad.. It's free if you want to keep it free..

Edited by Elazul
@ipaqi said:

If Dave went to the past and ate the taco, it would simply create an alternate timeline where Dave never got to eat that taco and never took up time travel.

There's always a man. There's always a van. There's always a taco.

Dave is a Christ surrogate, think about it.

I read these comments before I watched the Quick Look and thought you were both talking about Snider. I was a LOT happier back then.