Yesterday marked the premiere of the highly anticipated follow-up to the mobile hit, Plants vs. Zombies. Developed by EA subsidiary Popcap Games, Plants vs. Zombies 2 brings back the wackiness of the original, while enhancing the scope and focus of the mobile title, having the player embark on an epic adventure that spans beyond the backyard, the pool, and the roof to worlds unexplored.
We attended the Plants vs. Zombies 2 premiere event at Midtown Comics in NYC, slaughtering mummy zombies by the fistful like there was no afterlife for them.
In celebration of the launch of Plants vs. Zombies 2, here's five quick facts about the hit mobile title, which we enjoyed playing during the premiere.
1. There's A Variety of New Plants
The first Plants vs. Zombies had a garden variety of plants, but the much-anticipated sequel takes the seed by introducing a whole garden full of new plant types. New plants range from Bonk Choy, a plant that literally punches zombies to their demise, to Bloomerangs, which whip boomerang pedals across the screen, cutting zombies down like they won't ever rise again. These innovations serve to round out the already extensive cast of plants, making a prize winning garden to overcome the challenges of new and more challenging zombie types.
2. Crazy Dave Is Back
The premise of Plants vs. Zombies 2 is wacky, but certainty simple enough, and is entirely carried out by everyone's favorite mentally unstable neighbor, Crazy Dave. Ever the crazy person, Crazy Dave decides he wants to go back in time and eat his favorite taco yet again, so he builds a time machine that accidentally sends the plants back in time to various historical and thematic periods. Rather than cram the game with a solid amount of expository dialogue, Crazy Dave then hangs back and watches the action unfold -- interjecting a cheeky line of dialogue or two when necessary with precise comedic timing.
3. The World Map Is Pretty Extensive
Speaking of various periods of history, Crazy Dave's antics force the player into the worlds of ancient Egypt, the Wild West and the Pirate Cove, both of which have extensive levels and unique challenges to uphold. For example, the far land of Egypt is full of tombstones that needs to be smashed, lest they block your plant attacks. The Pirate Cove and Wild West also offer obstacles that hinder the player's objective of destroying all zombies, by both introducing new zombie types, such as the Pirate Cannonball zombie that constantly bombards your back row of plants with undead midgets, to Piano Zombies, which allow nearby zombies to dance their way to adjacent rows, undermining any well-planned out plant defense.
4. The Animation Is Significantly Crisper
One of the most glaring improvements in Plants vs. Zombies 2 is the quality of the animation, which has undergone a significant upgrade. Going in a more stylized direction, the passion of the Popcap team can be seen in every frame of animation, as its crisp, polished tone breathes new life into the franchise. Instead of unendingly leaving their mouthes open, plants now spit peas in a more realistic and funny manner, and the animation of other plants follows suit. It's clear that the team put a significant amount of time into the visuals, and the improvement really pushes the 2D boundaries of what we've seen on mobile devices thus far.
5. Power-Ups Make An Upgraded Return
While power ups existed in the original Plant vs. Zombies in a limited capacity, they make a much more prominent return in Plants vs. Zombies 2. Available in the game store, power ups allow the player to take out hordes of zombies in one fell swoop, and range from plant food, which is collected during play and can make plants unleash a super attack, to store-bought power-ups with in game currency, which allow you to take out an entire single line of zombies with electricity or a literal hand of death.