Plants vs


Deconstructor of Fun breaks down successful free-to-play games in search of what makes them fun - or not. All of the contributors lớn this site are both gamers & game makers.quý khách hàng vẫn xem: Plants vs

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Personally, I think that Plants vs. Zombies 2 (PvZ2) is a great game. The game has kept all the good from the first episode và spiced it up with new nội dung as well as features like map & gesture operated power-ups. The biggest change of the sequel though is that it went from paid lớn không tính tiền. And as you know, this blog is all about the game mechanic.

In hindsight, it seems that dropping the price tag was a smart choice as PvZ2 broke briefly into lớn toptrăng tròn crossing on iPhone và ipad tablet. This is a good result from an essentially paid game, but top20 isn"t probably something PopCap và EA was expecting. Given the promotion power, EA possesses, not breaking top10 grossing is an evidence that PvZ2 monetizes portly.

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In this post, I’ll present the 4 main reasons why PvZ2 is unlikely to lớn ever reach top10 grossing on iOS.

1. Unsuitable for Different Play Environments

People play di động games in the comfort of their trang chính, where they have sầu plenty of time and limited amount of sudden & unexpected distractions. But apart from home, games are also played while commuting, at work & in the solitary of the bathroom (source: Tech Crunch). Because of different play environment session length & the amount of concentration game demands can be seen as a crucial factor.

As a developer you have sầu two choices. Either design your game so that it suits different environments thus enabling players khổng lồ enjoy it throughout their days & fill up their không lấy phí moments with a few minutes of fun. Or you can ignore this fact of different play environments & just hope that players will launch you game when they get baông chồng trang chính or inlớn the bathroom – assuming of course that they won’t continue playing that other game they have been playing throughout the day.


Each cấp độ takes a lot of time and demands 100% concentration making PvZ2 unsuitable for quichồng game sessions in places with a lot of distractions.

PvZ2 is a good example of ignoring different play environments. First of all the session are always long. It takes around 4 minutes to give one level a go. That’s long comparing to lớn a minute it takes to lớn thua a life in Candy Crush Saga. Secondly playing PvZ2 demands absolute concentration, finger tốc độ and both of your thumbs. Look away & you lost a Sun. Keep looking away và you’ve sầu failed a màn chơi. It’s just not the kind of a game you want lớn play while commuting or when there’s a risk of distraction.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that in order lớn succeed, thiết bị di động game has khổng lồ be similarly playable in all environments. Many titles avoid this problem simply by creating different of play sessions. For example in Clash of Clans attacking requires a lot of concentration as a missed tap results easily in a defeat. But collecting resource building, training troops as well as chatting with the ccầu thang be done easily on the go.

2. Lack of Social Gameplay

Playing a game with real people, preferably someone players know, is essential for retention and monetization. Imagine Hay Day without the ability khổng lồ trade goods with other players? How about Candy Crush Saga without the progression maps showing how far your friends have sầu progressed và how they have sầu faired on each level.


Despite Facebook Connect & beautiful progression bản đồ, there are no social elements in PvZ2.

3. Fear of Disappointing Players

According lớn the freemium mantra, games have sầu lớn be easy khổng lồ get inkhổng lồ, constantly rewarding và leave sầu players with a feeling of achievement after each session. Games like FarmVille, Sims Social & Hay Day followed this mantra successfully. They made sure that people new to games enjoyed playing them. They made sure that it is essentially impossible for players to lớn ‘lose’. In short, these games aren’t about skills. Players’ success và progress simply correlate with time spent playing the game (or money spent lớn speed up the time).

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To some extent, the freemium mantra is very true, but it has to lớn fit the genre. Simulation games such fit the description but freemium puzzle & arcade games should be treated differently. As we all know, failing a cấp độ in Candy Crush Saga, Jelly Splash or Angry Birds just makes us try harder. And passing these levels gives that amazing feeling of accomplishment.

Sadly PvZ2 is ridiculously easy. It takes absolutely no effort khổng lồ pass levels, making the game unchallenging and boring. Most of the people I know quit playing PvZ2 because of the laông chồng of challenge. None of them have sầu quit playing Candy Crush Saga even after being stuck on a màn chơi for over a week at a time.

Laông chồng of difficulty can be seen not only in falling retention but also in diminishing IAP revenue. PvZ2 offers boosters for real currency, which enable players to lớn clear levels with some consumable super powers. But khổng lồ create the demvà for these boosters players need lớn have those moments where they’re just about to lớn clear a màn chơi và realize that they’ll chiến bại without the help of a booster. Lack of challenge results in low demvà for boosters, which causes stagnant revenue.

4. No Core Loop

In my mind what truly makes a freemium game is the core loop. Vi xử lý Core loop models single full session from the mechanics point of view. And as we’re talking about freemium games, restriction mechanics are essential part of any successful core loop.

Chip Core loop doesn’t have khổng lồ be complicated. For example Candy Crush Saga’s has only one restriction mechanic in form of Lives. Lives are consumed during every session creating a natural end khổng lồ the session when player runs out of them. At this point player can wait, request Lives from Facebook friends or use real money lớn refill Lives.


Candy Crush Saga"s core loop is very simple and very effective

Hay Day on the other hvà has much more complicated core loop. In Hay Day you start off by planting Crops, which initiates the first timer of the loop. After crops are ready player harvests them and uses them lớn produce other resources initiating additional timers depending how developed products player wants to lớn create. Also lớn be noted that after each production phase players have sầu an option khổng lồ sell the produced good via P2P.. marketplace or to an NPC character.

Hay Day"s core loop is typical for simulation titles.

From core loop perspective the goal in Hay Day is khổng lồ convert time into lớn in-game currency, though the price of time unit gets lower as the player spends more time refining the products. A super efficient player in would make more money by being constantly in the game and selling basic items instead of overly refined items that take a long time lớn manufacture. Though from player’s perspective sầu they feel great when they spkết thúc hours producing a Pumpkin Pie và selling it for 100 Coins when they could have saved time and just sold 10 badges of Wheat at the same time for 15 Coins each.

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Plants vs. Zombies 2 is Essentially a Free Paid Game

In the kết thúc of the day, PvZ2 is pretty much a paid game without the price tag. Sure, it offers IAPs, but free-to-play is so much more than that. Without restriction mechanics there are no core loops & without core loops creating demvà for IAPs is very hard. The demvà for IAPs is so much lower also because the laông chồng of social integration, which are essential in creating collaboration and competition between players.