Quick, we need some Aussies up in this joint. Are there major changes from the original? Is it fun? What's new?
thats okay. australians need some video games related good news once in a while
It looks like they consider us expendable, that's not really good news.
I don't think "expendable" means what you think it means.
They're giving you the game early because your country is small and far away from everywhere else. Just because you're ideal test subjects doesn't mean that they want to lose your business.
Ok,you guys wanted an Aussie perspective on this game.I'll give you one.Be prepared for frustration,LOTS of frustration.
The difficulty curve of the game has been ramped WAY up,so that gaining new plants,advancing to the next levels is MUCH harder without a lot of grind,or saying "F*** it and paying to unlock them.
In the first game,the game mechanics were deceptively easy to learn,and the difficulty curve felt natural and gradual until you suddenly realised the game had just gotten delightfully much harder.The inital reward of a new plant per level as been replaced by a system of coins,stars and keys.Levels and plants are unlocked by the latter two,and the coins are used to purchase new power-ups that allow you the abilities to flick,pinch or electrocute zombies away.This would be fun if the coin rewards weren't so skimpy you're tempted to top them up with real world cash.Some levels simply aren't winnable without power-ups,and if you're out of in-game coin or real moola,tough luck.
Winning the level by simply killing all the zombies before they invade your house is now not enough.Progressing to the next level is only possible by winning stars (or finding keys,which are sparingly placed and easy to miss).To win these stars,you must not just beat the level,but beat it EXACTLY the proscribed way the level tells you to.For example,on one level,you must not spend sun for 90 seconds,collect 3000 sun AND not use the lawn mowers.If you fail ANY of these provisos,no progression for you.MOST levels require you NOT to use ANY of your lawn-mowers to win the stars.So the thrill of narrowly beating the game has been replaced with the resentment that even though you beat the zombies,you didn't beat the zombies in exactly the way required,so no advancement or plants for you.As I said,the only way to beat many of these levels is with the power-ups,so you either repeat levels to get paltry coins to purchase them,or spend real money on them.There are about 90 levels,and God,does it feel like it.Can somebody tell Popcap that Grind and content are NOT the same thing?
I owned the first game on 3 platforms I loved it so much,and never had to play ANY level more than about 3 times.On this game,I've played some levels 6 or more times and turned it off in frustration.
Don't get me wrong,there's a great game hidden underneath the pay wall.with Crazy Dave taking Penny the time machine car back in time to find his fave taco,the new kind of period zombies are fun.Pirate Zombies,Pharoah zombies, and Cowboys are all cool opponents.(the zombie chickens and parrots are real SOBs though,and unlike the bunge zombies,there are no plants like the umbrella plants designed specifically to deal with them.)The handful of new plants are pretty fun,such as they are,my faves being snapdragon(incinerates zombies) and chili bean(zombies eat and fart themselves to death).However, ALL the mushrooms,garlic and cattail are gone.Some of the redesigns are not improvements.Tall nut looks square and cumbersome,while the grave-digger plant is now a weird wrap- around thing.Definitely you notice a drop in the quality of the artwork.
Also gone are the zen garden,mini games and night levels.Some of the mini games live on in the main game,but again difficulty and repetition is the name of the game.In the Egyptian level,there is a 'match' game(where you turn the shields of the zombies over,and try to match their symbols with the shield symbols of other zombies)that feel like so much filler.
It takes SO long to get all the plants(and some you HAVE to buy) you consistently feel like you're only playing half the game.In PVZ1,the difficulty is matched with the amount and variety of plants you have.In the new game,the difficulty is close to the final levels from the get-go.
There is a super game in there somewhere.But so much of it is locked behind grind or a paywall,I just kept thinking,"Gee I wish I were playing the first game." The freemium model has killed a lot of the joy of the game.Don't get me wrong,I'm all for diffculty and a little bit of grind for achievements,but the main campaign should not start to bore you with repetition and frustation.
My recommendation:lower the demands of the star system and make planets and levels unlockable by merely beating the level.The proscribed ways you are required to use to beat each level kills innovative gameplay.
I think I'm just going to wait until somebody works out how to hack the new plants into the old game.That to me will be a lot more fun than this grindfest.