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Video Game / Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare

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Spinning off of the Plants vs. Zombies series, Garden Warfare steps away from its Tower Defense roots to step into the realm of Third Person Hero Shooters. Players can take either side in a variety of modes, including:

  • Garden Ops: A Co-op mode where up to four Plants establish a garden, then defend it from wave after wave of zombies.
    • Garden Warfare 2 adds Graveyard Ops, a co-op mode where you play as the zombies defending yourself from the plants.
  • Team Vanquish: A deathmatch where Plants and Zombies vie to be the first team to rack up 50 kills.
  • Gardens & Graveyards: The Zombie team race against the clock to capture various strongholds while the Plants do everything in their power to fend them off.
    • Garden Warfare 2 adds Herbal Assult, which turns the tables on the zombies with the plants going on the offensive. Collectively, these modes are known as Turf Takeover.
  • Gnome Bomb: Try to grab the gnome and use it to blow up three gardens/tombstones.
  • Suburbination: Teams try to capture three points on a map to score points.

First released on the Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles on February 25, 2014, it was ported to Windows on June 30 of the same year, and the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4, on August 19.

Plants Vs Zombies Garden Warfare 2 was released on February 23rd, 2016. In this game, Suburbia has been taken over by the zombies and renamed "Zomburbia", and the plants are trying to take it back. In addition to adding 3 new classes for each side, the game also features a single-player campaign, a Hub Level full of side-quests and minigames, and a "Graveyard Ops" mode for Zombies.


In the summer of 2019, it was revealed that a reimagining of sorts of the franchise would be released sometime that year. It was officially announced as Plants vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville.

Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare contains examples of:

  • Absurdly High Level Cap: The second game's maximum rank is 5,455, one rank up for every level gained. It gets tedious since you need to be playing every class and variant in the game.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Accessories are just Cosmetic Awards to give your Plants and Zombies more distinctive looks. However, each variant class not only looks different, but offers different perks, such as their basic attacks dealing elemental damage, faster reload times, or dealing more damage per shot.
  • An Ice Person: Several Variants revolve around ice, such as the Arctic Trooper or Ice Pea.
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  • Art Shift: Compare the original to Garden Warfare. Yeah.
  • Auto-Revive: The Self-Revive and Team Revive consumable items allow for this in Garden Ops mode.
  • Baleful Polymorph:
    • Rose's Goatify, which turns zombies into Goats, replacing their abilities with useless and lengthy taunts. Their only means of defense is a weak and slow ram attack. Although it's temporary, and doesn't work on Z-Mechs or Hover-Goats.
    • The Giant Hypno-Flower has a stronger version that turns all zombies into Stinky Goats which it uses once it takes enough damage. Unlike Rose's, this one can affect Z-Mechs and even Hover-Goats, and it also won't wear off normally- the goatified zombies need to eat Poly Leaves in order to cure it.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: On the two moon maps, there is a lack of life sustaining device for the Plants and Zombies while out and exposed in space. Justified, since the zombies, being undead, do not need oxygen, and Plants as there is plenty carbon dioxide on the moon and solar energy from the sun.
  • Big Bad:
    • As usual, Dr. Zomboss is the main antagonist. Unless you're playing on the Zombie Side, which then it's Crazy Dave.
    • Though There's also the Gnomes....
  • Big Boo's Haunt: The Zomboss Estate mansion contains a pumpkin patch, a cemetery, and the Slenderman.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: The Yeti Zombie boss. The Suburbination pack adds the money-carrying Treasure Yeti.
  • Bookends: Every round of Garden Ops starts with Crazy Dave dropping off the Plant PCs somewhere. If they survive all ten rounds, he comes back to pick them up.
  • Border Patrol: In Garden Warfare, going out of bounds turns the screen gray, along with a message that appears saying OUT OF BOUNDS, while under it is a countdown displaying how many seconds are left until you are killed automatically, if you are killed, or you stop going out of bounds, the screen turns back to normal. Shortly after, you spawn back to where you normally spawned if you were killed.
  • Call-Back: The marine biologist is armed with... a tiny dolphin. And it is (also a zombie).
  • Chain Lightning: Electrical variants have attacks that possess this effect.
  • Charged Attack: Several variants, such as the Future Cactus and the Plasma Pea, can charge their primary weapons for more damage.
  • Color-Coded Armies: The Plants are represented as green and the Zombies are represented as purple.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: Bosses are immune to Chomper's One-Hit Kill eating move, mainly because they are too big to be eaten.
  • Cool Airship: Dr. Zomboss has one as an Evil Counterpart to Crazy Dave's flying trailer. Boss Mode lets a player take control of one or the other.
  • Cosmetically Different Sides: Zig-Zagged; while each class has an obvious counterpart, their abilities differ or are switched around. For instance, while both are healers, Scientists in GW1 lack an equivalent to the Sunflower's Heal Beam and must rely on setting Heal Stations or Mega Heal Bombs. Played straight by the Mooks- the Weeds and variants are basically equivalent to the mook zombies and their variants.
    • Garden Warfare 2 continues to zig-zag this trope. While some classes have been changed to act as more of a counterpart to a class on the other side counterpart (scientists, for example, now have their own heal beam), most of the new classes are unlike anything the other team has.
      • Roses and Imps both have a powerful crowd-control ability with a wide area-of-effect that renders opponents helpless. But while Roses are surprisingly un-Squishy Wizards, Imps are Glass Cannons with the lowest health pool in the game.
      • Citrons and Superbrains are both tanky and have lasers, but while citrons are more focused on ranged attacks, superbrains are more focused on melee attacks.
      • Kernel Corns were added to fill the "Dude with a Minigun" niche that the zombies covered with and All-Stars. But while both have a poweful rapid-fire minigun attack, All-Stars can place shields and tackle their opponents, Kernel Corns have missiles and artillery support.
      • At first, Captain Dreadbeard appears similar to the cactus, being a long-ranged fighter who can summon a drone. But while Cacti have little to no close-range abilities (instead gaining the ability to place walls and explosive mines), Dreadbeard has a powerful shotgun and a powerful "barrel blast" that deals huge damage within a small area around him, at the expense of lacking any defensive abilities.
  • Damage-Sponge Boss: All of the bosses fit this trope.
  • Dark Is Not Evil:
    • The Shadow Flower variant. Originally, a more evil-looking Sunflower variant was designed, but the developers felt it didn't fit the Sunflower.
    • GW2 Adds the Vampire Sunflower, a Perky Goth that drains the life force from her enemies.
  • Deflector Shields: Citron can produce one that protects him from incoming frontal attacks. Super Bean has a full-body one that must be taken down in order to damage it.
  • Death from Above: Crazy Dave and Dr. Zomboss can drop airstrikes onto the battlefield in Boss Mode. Also a good strategy for Plants or Zombies; Peashooters and Foot Soldiers have abilities making it easier for them to get to higher ground, while Cacti and Engineers can launch flying drones.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist:
    • Usually, being vanquished is just a minor setback. Even if your allies can't revive you, you just respawn back near your base or the last checkpoint. Means you might be in for a bit of a walk, but that's about it.
    • Doesn't apply as much in Garden Ops. If your teammates fail to revive you in time, you have to sit out the rest of the wave, hoping they can finish off the horde without you.
  • Drop Ship: Crazy Dave's flying trailer doubles as one.
  • Dummied Out: The Gravedigger was a planned class who got replaced by the Scientist. Concept art still exists for him. Vehicles and certain abilities were also completely removed.
  • Eaten Alive: The Chomper's Signature Move. Any zombie that falls to this is naturally Unrevivable.note 
  • The Engineer: One zombie class is aptly called the Engineer Zombie.
  • Escort Mission: The final part of the Cactus Canyon map involves the zombies being made to push an explosive-strapped golfball into the hole, similar to the Payload mode from Team Fortress 2.
  • Everything's Better with Rainbows: According to its Flavor Text, the only difference between the standard and Rainbow Heal Beams is that the latter is way more colorful. Pretty~!
  • Evil Only Has to Win Once: Gardens & Graveyards Inverts this: if the plants can defend a single checkpoint past the time limit, then the round automatically ends with their victory. Played Straight in Herbal Assault, where the plants are on the offensive, and running out of time on any objective means the zombies win.
  • Exact Time to Failure: Seen in Gnome Bomb, particularly when the Gnome has been set and armed. Unlike Gardens & Graveyards, there's no Overtime: even if you're in the middle of disarming the bomb when it hits zero, you're instantly blown up.
  • Final Boss: In the solo missions, Captain Smasher for the Plants and the Hypno-Flower Queen for the zombies
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: A feature of several character subclasses, where their basic attacks gain an elemental edge.
  • Fisher King: Gardens have their own personal sunbeam, with a bouncy scarecrow singing a jaunty tune. If the Zombies take over, black clouds form over the newly erected tombstone.
  • Flunky Boss: The Disco Zombie can summon four Backup Dancer Zombies to aid it in battle.
  • Foul Flower:
    • The Zombie missions in Garden Warfare 2 contain three flower bosses: the Sunflower Queen, who looks quite sinister with her pointy petals and glowing eyes, Marigold, which appears as a more minor enemy in other levels, but appears as a boss once to prevent the player from obtaining an important scroll, and the Final Boss, the Royal Hypno-Flower, which looks decidedly less threatening despite its size, but is nonetheless more dangerous than the other two.
    • There is also the Dark Flower that the Sunflower can use, which attacks zombies and in the Stickerbook it is referred as "an evil little flower."
  • Fragile Speedster:
    • Sunflowers have the swiftest base running speed, but the lowest HP.
    • The Imp has the lowest HP of all playable characters (75 HP), but is very fast and hard to hit thanks to his small size.
  • Friendly Fireproof: Plants can't hurt other Plants and Zombies can't hurt Zombies.
  • Game-Over Man: After getting killed the player that got you take up your screen with a tombstone showing their gamer tag, the weapon they used, how much health they have, and the number of times you killed them and they killed you. Don't be surprised if they taunt.
  • Hub Level: Backyard Battleground in GW2
  • Hybrid Monster: The Royal Hypno Sunflower
  • Gangplank Galleon: Port Scallywag, a pirate village located somewhere in Suburbia.
  • Gatling Good: One of the Peashooter's abilities is the Pea Gatling, and later the Retro Gatling.
  • The Goomba: The typical Browncoat Zombie is the weakest zombie of them all, but you'll receive large numbers of them in Sticker Packs. The basic Weed is the plant counterpart to them.
  • Grim Up North: A level featured in Gardens & Graveyards in GW 2. In this particular case, the zombies are trying to make the snowy north into this sort of place, by freeing the Yeti King from his icy prison and start an ice age.
  • Mooks: While the zombies have their various Browncoat types, the plants in the sequel have them in the form of weeds, which all have a counterpart to their zombie equivalents.
  • Outside-Genre Foe: In GW2's "infinite mode", you don't fight against plants or zombies. You're fighting against gnomes.
  • Oxymoronic Being: The Vampire Sunflower in GW2. Lampshaded in her description.
  • Man-Eating Plant: The Chomper, obviously.
  • Mighty Glacier:
    • The Chomper and All-Star classes, as well as the Metal Petal. The Armor Chomper takes this Up to Eleven.
    • GW2 adds Citrons and Superbrains, though Citrons can transform to move from one place to another quickly.
  • The Minion Master:
    • Plant players can summon plants to act as stationary sentries, whereas Zombie players can summon AI-controlled zombies.
    • GW2 adds robotic turrets that zombies can build, and A.I. controlled "weeds" that plants can summon.
  • Mythology Gag: Crazy Dave calls himself "The Fog Man" in Garden Ops sometimes, which is what Dave claims he was called in his earlier years in the first Plants Vs. Zombies.
  • Nerf: This happened to Rose in the Graveyard Pack update, which toned down the previously high damage output of her Homing Projectiles to make her more of a Support Party Member.
  • Never Say "Die": In this game, when you get killed, you didn't die. Instead, you got vanquished.
  • Playing with Fire: Several Variants revolve around fire, such as the Fire Flower and the Fire Chomper.
  • The Power of the Sun: Sunflowers can plant themselves and fire Sun Beams at the Zombie hordes.
  • Rocket Jump: Foot Soldiers and their variants can use this to launch themselves to higher ground or evade groundbound enemies.
  • Revenge: The game keeps track of how many times a given player vanquishes your characters during a session. You get bonuses for taking them out, or for avenging a fallen comrade.
  • Shield-Bearing Mook:
    • Several Zombie Summons utilize screen doors, newspapers, treasure maps, outhouses, and even coffins as shields and armor.
    • On the flip-side for the plants in GW2, some of the weeds wield large leaves or planks of wood, and others have apparently grown into large vases that act as full-body armor.
  • Shielded Core Boss: The Super Bean has a forcefield that must be taken down to damage it, and it can regenerate said forcefield after some time, which is not helped by its tendency to Teleport Spam and Flash Step.
  • Shock and Awe: Several Variants revolve around electricity, such as the Electrician or Power Chomper.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Skewed Priorities: One of the reasons Crazy Dave may give for not immediately picking up the Plants in Garden Ops is that he's eating a block of cheese. (BECAUSE HE'S CRAAAAAAAZY!)
  • Sudden Death: In Gardens & Graveyards, Overtime kicks in if there's any zombies currently in the garden they're trying to capture when time runs out. This lasts until either the point is captured or all the zombies in the radius are killed, whichever comes first.
  • Sunny Sunflower Disposition: The Sunflowers are Perpetual Smilers doing their best to support their allies.
  • Timed Mission:
    • Gardens & Graveyards revolves around this; the Zombies vie to overwhelm each of the Plants' strongholds before time runs out.
    • Crazy Dave will sometimes give the Plants special objectives in Garden Ops. These Sidequests are entirely optional, and involve completing some task before time runs out.
    • If you survive all ten waves in Garden Ops, you're given a couple minutes to get to the Landing Zone, then have to stay alive long enough for Crazy Dave to land.
    • Gnome Bomb has a fifteen-minute timer. Once you get the Gnome, you've got a short amount of time to get to a target before it blows up on you; when it's set, it must be defended or defused within thirty seconds.
  • The Turret Master:
    • The Engineer Zombie can summon Zombot Turrets during Gardens & Graveyards to protect teleporters.
    • Rose serves in this capacity in GW2 during Herbal Assault, summoning magnifying grass that shoot approaching zombies.
  • Total Party Wipe:
    • Captain Smasher, when damaged enough, will cause a timed curse to appear and affect the plant team. If the timer hits zero before the curse-bearing mooks are taken down, all the plants are wiped regardless of health.
    • In the event boss hunt "Tale of the Spooky Squash," if the zombie team fails the candy bucket phase (the zombie holding the candy bucket is KO'd, time runs out, or a zombie not holding the bucket eats the candy), the team will get wiped by a curse.
  • The Unfought: Dr. Zomboss is never actually fought in-game. This is curious because his giant robot appears at the very end of the E3 Reveal demo of the first game. He may have been Dummied Out.
  • That One Player: With the game's Absurdly High Level Cap you'll find the occasional high-rank in any lobby that racks so many kills that they become a target. God forbid they be on the opposite team.
  • Villain Song: Despite only having one lyric, the Disco Zombie's theme "Boogie Your Brains Right Over Here" may count. Several musical tracks also have the zombies singing in the series' standard gibberish speak.
  • Virtual Paper Doll: Plants and Zombies can be heavily customized this way, with cool and quirky headgear, eyewear and more unusual options, like the Plants' Organics allowing them to replace their 'hands' with a variety of other plantlife.
  • The Wild West: The Jewel Junction map.
  • Youthful Freckles: Seen on the Sunflowers.
  • You Will Not Evade Me:
    • GW1 only has Goop, Chomper's skill, with a mere 5 second cool down which completely sticks a zombie in place.
    • GW2 has many more of these skills, including the Z7 Mech's Biotic Pull (With surprising range), Super Brainz's Turbo Twister which make it impossible for any plant to escape him, and Citron's EMPeach is often used this way.


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