Game Reviews

Plants vs Zombies DSiWare

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| Plants vs Zombies
Plants vs Zombies DSiWare
| Plants vs Zombies

Redefining gaming genres is all in a day's work for PopCap, with Bejeweled blowing the match-three market wide open, and Peggle showing us how Pachinko is really done.

Not content with leaving it there, the developer then went on to reinvent tower defence with Plants vs. Zombies - once again striking gold.

However, what was originally a breath of fresh air now gives off a slightly stale whiff, as version after version is regurgitated.

A total of eight platforms have seen an edition of Plants vs Zombies, and now a ninth is joining in the flora and fauna fun - the DSi version is a carbon copy of the DS version, minus a couple of modes.

Spreading the seeds

And yet, we still enjoyed it thoroughly. Plants vs Zombies pits you against hordes of the undead, with an army of foliage to hold them back.

Each plant you place in the garden acts as a means to stop the walking dead from entering your house on the left of the screen and eating your brains.

Some plants can cause damage to the zombies, while others buff up your resources or enhance the power of adjacent plants.

As you progress through the Adventure mode, more plants become available - as do different types of zombies - and you'll need to constantly change your tactics to match and suppress the incoming threat.

The action is incredibly addictive, and brimming with personality. Plants dance on the spot and lay into the zombies when possible, and the corpses continously moan 'braaaains' in the most bizarre manners.

Spot of pruning

Essentially, Plants vs Zombies DSi is the exact same game available at retail for the DS, minus a couple of modes so as to meet Nintendo's download restrictions.

The two-player VS mode is gone, as is Survival mode. However, the four minigames from the DS version are here, and an exclusive DSi minigame called Zombie Trap.

While these are a welcome distraction, the game definitely doesn't feel as meaty as past Plants vs Zombies releases.

Of course, everything else is exactly the same as the DS version, from the slightly low-res visuals and occasional framerate slowdown to the pointless top screen usage.

Always down the garden

Compared to the rest of the DSi library, however, it's amazing how much content is packed into this release.

The Adventure mode will take a fair few hours to complete, and in total you'll most likely play for a good five hours before becoming bored.

And considering that the DS release was full price at retail, and the DSi version is just 800 points, it's easy to forgive the missing modes.

Plants vs Zombies is as hilarious and enjoyable as ever. If you've never played it before, this is well worth picking up.

Plants vs Zombies DSiWare

Plants vs Zombies DSi prunes away some of the game modes, but still provides one of the best DSi experiences you can find
Mike Rose
Mike Rose
An expert in the indie games scene, Mike comes to Pocket Gamer as our handheld gaming correspondent. He is the author of 250 Indie Games You Must Play.