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Plants vs. Zombies™ 3
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Plants vs. Zombies returns in a simplified but fun new form

Plants vs. Zombies returns in a simplified but fun new form

9K View2024-01-25

SHOULD I PLAY PLANTS VS. ZOMBIES 3?

If you’re a fan of either of the previous mainline Plants vs. Zombies game, it’s worth giving this one a try. Plants vs. Zombies 3 isn’t revolutionary, and it’s certainly not the masterpiece that the original game was, but it provides great, bite-sized doses of strategic undead-slaying fun. Some fans might balk at the ways in which this entry simplifies some elements of the series, but I ended up enjoying it quite a bit more than the more money-hungry Plants vs. Zombies 2.

TIME PLAYED

I’ve spent around six hours playing Plants vs. Zombies 3 over the course of the last few days. I’ve made it about seventy levels into the game, which has taken me into day five of the story. I know there are over one hundred levels in the game already, so I have plenty more green-thumbed action ahead of me.
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WHAT’S AWESOME ABOUT PLANTS VS. ZOMBIES 3?

• Bite-sized mobile-friendly levels. Compared to the first two Plants vs. Zombies games, levels in this third entry move at a faster clip. Some players may be disappointed, since this can mean levels are either over too soon or ramp up in difficulty too quickly. For the most part, though, I found this to be a worthwhile trade-off for making the game work better in a mobile setting. This is the first time I’ve felt like I could pull out my phone and play a level or two whenever without worrying much about it lasting too long.
• Goofy characters and story. Crazy Dave is back and joined by his niece Patrice, but Plants vs. Zombies 3 pulls away from the time-traveling absurdity of the second game and explores a more familiar setting. The story here is all about Dave and Patrice working together to clean up their quiet suburban neighborhood and, as always, to protect the lawn from the shuffling feet of brain-eaters. Story sequences are short and sweet—as they should be—but they provided just enough of a break between levels and were well written enough that I got some enjoyment out of them.
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• Decorating your own zombie-free dream home. In a move seemingly borrowed from games like Gardenscapes, story progression in Plants vs. Zombies 3 is marked by being able to make small choices about how the house and its surrounding environments are decorated. Generally I was given three styles to choose from when decking out places such as the Neighborville pool, a lemonade stand, or a cute little shack. Again, this isn’t groundbreaking stuff, but it was a nice little carrot to keep me pushing through each new level and seeing how I could improve the area.
• A parade of new mechanics and twists. The key to the Plants vs. Zombies formula is that it’s simple but full of endless possibilities for how to keep mixing things up. Plants vs. Zombies 3 starts off a little slow with a lot of easier tutorial levels, but by the time I made it to levels in the thirties and forties I was enjoying some fresh changes to the basics. My personal favorite: rainy levels where puddles would form on the ground. Placing plants in those puddles made them attack or generate sunshine at double speed, which was a blast.
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• Less mobile money sinks than last time around. I know a lot of people love Plants vs. Zombies 2, but personally I was always a little put off by just how much it embraces some of the worst free-to-play monetization practices. Plants vs. Zombies 3 does away with a lot of that stuff. Perhaps the biggest example is the plants themselves; as of right now at least, plants are not locked behind paywalls of any sort, and there is no plant upgrade system that requires devoting tons of time or money to.

WHAT SUCKS ABOUT PLANTS VS. ZOMBIES 3?

• Fewer strategic options. One major change in Plants vs. Zombies 3 that I know some players will miss is the ability to choose your loadout of seeds when going into a level. It’s possible that there will be levels deeper into the game that allow for this, but if they exist, I haven’t seen them yet. Instead, you have a set selection of plants for each level. On the one hand, this forced me to get comfortable with every plant type; on the other, I definitely had moments of wishing I could swap in one of my old favorites for certain levels.
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• Randomness can be a killer on more difficult levels. Even more so than the previous games, Plants vs. Zombies 3 has some harsh RNG spikes. A couple of times during the first seventy levels, I hit points where I would get stuck dying on a stage multiple times in a row, but I could tell that this wasn’t a flaw in my strategy but just a matter of getting bad zombie spawns that I couldn’t quite handle. These instances were rare but they stuck out and made the game feel less tightly balanced.
• Life system. One free-to-play monetization method that Plants vs. Zombies 3 has not gotten rid of is its life system. I had five lives at any one time, and if I failed a level, one of them would be lost. As of right now, the game seems pretty generous with giving out timed “infinite life” buffs, so I actually don’t even know how long it takes to regenerate lives. But I know that this kind of system bugs me regardless and seems designed to push players to spend money the second their lives run out.

PLATFORM TESTED

Android via Galaxy S21 Ultra 5G phone.
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Comments
kent derik mendoza
kent derik mendoza
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8

very hard to play, cannot choose plants that you can plant on the field

2024-01-25

kent derik mendoza
kent derik mendoza
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the stage also very difficult to handle by giving fix plant by those hordes of zombies, also some plants all expensive to buy with sun's, and zombies have plot armor lol

2024-01-26

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asumamalia
asumamalia
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1

is hard to play, i will delete this if the dev cannot fix it

2024-01-26

Abnormal
Abnormal
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there's no way Plants vs Zombies 3 exists... I'm installing it

2024-05-27

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