Director(s) Jeremy Vanhoozer
Engine Frostbite 3
Developer PopCap Games
Publisher Electronic Arts
Producer(s) Kyle Duncan
Initial release date 23 February 2016
Series Plants vs. Zombies
|Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer|
Platforms PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows
Genres Tower defense, Third-person shooter
Similar Plants vs Zombies games, Electronic Arts games, Shooter games
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Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2 is a third-person shooter video game developed by PopCap Games and published by Electronic Arts. It was released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. It is the sequel to Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare. The game released worldwide on February 25, 2016, exactly two years after the first game.
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Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2 is a third-person shooter, similar to Garden Warfare. Gameplay will largely remain the same as its predecessor, with the addition of 8 (6 immediately accessible and 2 which must be unlocked through a series of tough trials) new plant and zombie classes, a zombie version of Garden Ops, titled Graveyard Ops, and a new mode called Herbal Assault mode, a swapped version of Gardens and Graveyards where the Zombies must defend the bases and preventing the Plants from capturing it, which supports up to 24 players. Different classes have different abilities. Most characters and modes (Team Vanquish, Garden Ops, etc.) from the original Garden Warfare will be returning. A new "remix" music from the original Garden Warfare for the Zombies. New abilities for returning characters will also be introduced in Garden Warfare 2.
Unlike the first game, while in the original Garden Warfare can play solo only on Garden Ops, via private mode, in Garden Warfare 2 every mode in the game can be played solo. Split-screen multiplayer, private servers, twelve maps and forty different characters will be supported at launch. Free additional content will also be released regularly upon the game's release. An internet connection will still be required as in the first game.
A new mode called Backyard Battleground is also introduced. It serves as a hub world that is free for players to explore. In Backyard Battleground, players can access portals that are connected to missions, view unlocked characters' bobbleheads, collect collectibles scattered in the world, and join King of the Hill-style matches known as Flag of power matches against artificial intelligence at will. When playing Backyard Battleground, the game will send waves of enemy heroes, although the game will also send crates, containing either an AI ally or coins. There are also plant pots or places where the player can build either plant turrets or Zombie bots. A shooting gallery and moon-based missions are also featured.
Plant and zombie variants the player earned in the original game will automatically transfer to this game. The UI has been improved, with Crazy Dave and Dr. Zomboss shown talking in 3D model of themselves (rather than appearing as 2D designs from the original Plants vs. Zombies).
At the bases of both the Plants and the Zombies, there are several common features, including a Customization Room allowing the player to change and accessorize characters, a Quest Board with different objectives for Plants, Multiplayer, and Zombies, sticker Shops, a Multiplayer Portal, a Mailbox, and a special Garage, with quest missions for both sides.
The game also includes many exclusive rewards for players who have played the original Garden Warfare. The player can use their Mailbox in either side's base to import all of the unlocked characters and abilities that they have unlocked in Garden Warfare, depending on if they actually played the first game. They can also use their rank from GW1 to get loyalty rewards, which rank from sticker packs to an extremely exclusive character for those who reached the max rank 313, the Unicorn Chomper. Also, players who either pre-ordered or purchased the deluxe edition of Garden Warfare 2 will get lots of exclusive items, from emoji customizations to an exclusive Mass Effect-themed character, the Z7 Imp.
In the Trials Of Gnomus update a new character called Rux was added. This is a shop that is set up randomly in the sewers. He sells at least one legendary item everytime and often sells some ability (normally a 'bling' ability.
Most of the modes from Garden Warfare are returning to Garden Warfare 2 (the only mode not returning is Taco Bandits), while several new modes have been added, including a zombie version of Garden Ops, Graveyard Ops, and an alternative of Gardens and Graveyards, Herbal Assault, in which the plants attack and the zombies defend.
The game took place in the present day after the events of Garden Warfare, after a long war, the Plants have been defeated by the Zombies (including the well-advanced ones) after Dr. Edgar George Zomboss contacts his future self and obtains the more technologically advanced Z-Mech, which is piloted by Zombie Imps. The Zombies use it to turn the tide on the Plants and conquer Suburbia, which they rename Zomburbia. The Plants go to war against the Zombies to reclaim their home and fight for what is left of Suburbia. At the start of the game, the player grows in Zomburbia as a Sunflower and is warped out by Crazy Dave, landing in the Plants' side of the Backyard Battleground.
In July 2015, it was announced that a 3-part tie-in comic book series published by Dark Horse Comics is scheduled for release in October 2015. It is set before the events of Garden Warfare 2 and explains how the Zombies defeated the Plants and conquered Neighborville (Suburbia).
A new Plants vs. Zombies video game was revealed in Electronic Arts' annual earning reports. A sequel to Garden Warfare was teased on June 8, 2015. A trailer for Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2 was presented for the first time at E3 2015 as part of the presentation given by Microsoft and on August 22, 2015 during Xbox Live's webcast of the Miss Teen USA 2015 beauty pageant. A mashup with Mass Effect called Grass Effect was announced at Gamescom 2015. Players who pre-order the game would receive a Mass Effect-inspired mech-suit for the new class, The Imp. BioWare assisted PopCap with developing the Grass Effect mech-suit.
An open beta testing for the game was held from January 14, 2016 to January 18, 2016 for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. However, this was largely for multiplayer tuning, and many of the game modes and Backyard Battleground secrets were disabled. A trial version of the game was released by the end of April 2016. This version of the game allows players to play the game for up to ten hours.
They have released their first free content update called The Graveyard Variety Pack. It was released on March 8, 2016 and it contains some character balancing, a new map Aqua Center, and some Backyard Battleground changes and additions. Another pack, titled Trouble in Zombopolis, was released in June 2016. It adds a new map called Zombopolis, and several new characters. Trouble in Zombopolis: Part Two was released in June 2016, introducing new features such as community challenges, delivering challenges, platforming elements, and new spawn points. EA also partnered with Diamond Select Toys to release action figures featuring Garden Warfare 2 characters.
Kevin Dunsmore of Hardcore Gamer gave the game a 4 out of 5 saying, "PopCap Games paid close attention to the criticisms of the original game and ultimately crafted a worthy sequel." Jordan Devore from Destructoid rated the game a 9/10 saying, "The hub world is a far more realized slice of the wider Plants vs. Zombies universe, and it's so delightfully odd." IGN gave the game a score of 8.2/10, saying that the game "is all grown up into a premiere shooter".
The game's retail version was the second best-selling game in its week of release in the UK, debuting at No. 2 in the UK retail software sales chart, only behind Far Cry Primal.