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iPhone  header logo

Plants War

For: iPhone   Also on: Android, iPad

A Bit Plants

Product: Plants War | Developer: Gamevil | Publisher: Gamevil | Format: iPhone | Genre: Strategy | Players: 1 | Version: Europe | App version: 1.0.0
 
Plants War iPhone, thumbnail 1
The best freemium games work because they're well-balanced. They offer enough content to drag you in, and then entice you to flash the cash to extend and enrich your experience. In other words, they work because they're solid games to begin with.

If a game's a dull mess, then it doesn't matter how many in-game currencies or highly sought-after items you throw into the mix, because people are never going to want to buy them.

That's the trap Plants War falls into. It's a pricing model first, and an uninspired rehash of currently popular gameplay styles second.

Mulch

The game puts you in control of some rather upset plants. The human race has been wiped out, and the animals have reclaimed the earth. These new beasts are encroaching on plant territory, so it's time to show them who's boss, chlorophyll style.

You face off against these dastardly creatures across a battlefield. Your base sits at one end, the animals' at the other. Using a combination of your hero character and a handful of units, you need to bash through the enemy's defences and destroy its tower.

Before each level you can choose which units to take with you. Different units have different skills, and are weaker or stronger against some opponents. Your choice is limited to begin with, but as you earn or buy more coins your army size increases. Units spawn automatically, so you can concentrate on your plucky little hero.

Compost bin

As you battle through each encounter, your hero levels-up. This allows you to spend skill points in certain areas. You can learn and power-up special moves, increase your strength, or give yourself more hit points and magic move-powering mana.

These augmentations only last for one encounter, so you're back to square one the next time you have to fight. There are plenty of battles to work your way through, but all of them follow the same resolute tower-smashing template.

Without spending any extra cash, the game is a dirge. You move and attack by tapping on the screen, but quite often you can leave your plants to their own devices, letting them hack out a boring battle of attrition in the centre of the map.

Deep rooted problems

Splashing the cash does little to alleviate the malaise. No matter how powerful you are, or how many minions you're able to spawn, the game ends up a sludgy tap-fest, with little or no cerebral exertion to speak of.

While the game has lifted elements from plenty of successful strategy games, it fails to mesh them together into an enjoyable whole, then throws in a payment system that seems designed to punish rather than entice.

There's nothing wrong with freemium games when they're done well, but Plants War isn't. At its core, it's a deeply uninteresting slog, pieced together from a muddle of influences that never quite gel.

There are much better RTS tower attack games on the App Store, and any one of them deserves your time more than this.
 
Plants War
Reviewer photo
Harry Slater | 27 March 2012
Even if you leave to one side its overtly aggressive freemium pricing scheme, Plants War is still an unpleasant and bland slog
 
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