Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare review round-up: a fresh take on the shooter genre

All the verdicts in one place

In our Plants Vs. Zombies Garden Warfare review, we said the game "will enrapture younger players with its characters and style, but other games manage to do this while catering for those interested in the actual game underneath the affable exterior".

"With its skewed balance, lack of feedback and samey maps there's little to keep you playing once the kids have gone to bed," said our reviewer.

Other critics have also provided their two cents on the quirky new shooter. We've gathered up all the review scores and some short excerpts below.

  • GamesRadar: 3.5/5 - Garden Warfare is a fun, polished shooter, and what it lacks in gameplay depth it more than makes up for with fun cosmetic gear you'll actually want to unlock.
  • Polygon: 8.5/10 - "Different" doesn't always mean good. Unexpected combinations of action and subject matter don't always work out. But here, they're elevating factors in often tired genres. Garden Warfare could have been an underwhelming exercise in missing the point, of mismatched agendas. Instead, it takes the best parts of PVZ to make an experimental shooter that feels freed from tired conventions or compromise.
  • Digital Spy: 3/5 - Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare is not an exceptional shooter by any means - and in the case of its progression, can be quite frustrating - but seeing its classes brought to life in a shooter so effectively, with its trademark humour intact, will win you over for at least a short while.
  • GameSpot: 7/10 - While the unlockables fit right in with the whimsical spirit of the Plants vs. Zombies franchise, you're left feeling like Garden Warfare needed a little something more to make it a meal rather than a side salad. Still, it's that rare shooter whose world and characters might put a smile on your face, making it a refreshing entry in a genre that usually takes itself really seriously.
  • The Sixth Axis: 8/10 - It's one of the unlikeliest genre shifts that I've seen in a long while, but Garden Warfare really does do a great job of taking the Plants vs. Zombies franchise, with that peculiar sense of humour and the catchy music intact, and wrapping it round a multiplayer action shooter which borrows and twists ideas from the rest of the industry into something distinctly PvZ.
  • EGM: 8.0 - Even though there's a bit of a bare-bones quality, content-wise, to Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, it's definitely one of the good spin-offs. No matter what genre they tackle, the developers at PopCap really care about this franchise, and they clearly put forth a great effort. From the deep class system to the solid controls to the tiny details like zombie-movie references in the graffiti scattered around the levels (my personal favorite was "You've got red on you" from Shaun of the Dead), there sure is a lot here to love.
  • God Is A Geek: 8/10 - Garden Warfare is different enough to compliment those long sessions of other online shooters, and acts as a great palette cleanser in a genre dominated by greys and browns that often takes itself far too seriously. The inclusion of local multiplayer is also a huge plus and, depending on how often you play with family and friends, can add much to the value. Against all odds, somehow the team at PopCap have managed to craft a fun shooter that remains true to the series. More commendably, they've created a shooter that takes you by surprise and makes you laugh.
  • Destructoid: 8/10 - With a few more tweaks, Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare would be a must-buy for pretty much any shooter fan out there. But even with its blemishes, I was incredibly surprised by the amount of depth the game has to offer on top of all of its charm. Hopefully EA will ease off the microtransactions in the future and even more content will pile in, because with the right moves and support, Garden Warfare will be something special for quite some time.