Plants Vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville has landed on 4 PlayStation, Xbox One and PC almost a year and a half ago, finding the favorable opinions of critics and players. This latest incarnation of the hugely successful Tower Defense saga born way back in 2009, finally arrives today also on Nintendo Switch. A wait that served Electronic Arts not to bring on the hybrid console of Nintendo a simple port, as happened for many other titles, but to work better on a game that has many fans, so as to give the best possible experience; and, as we shall see, the goal was hit in full.
This latest incarnation of the saga, in fact, was polished before its new conversion, arriving in the hands of the owners of the Nintendo console in its final version. Since its release, the title has benefited from numerous updates, and the Complete Edition that you can play on Switch fortunately it includes all the original content plus all subsequent additions, including those of the DLC initially provided for a fee. On Nintendo Switch you will have the final point of arrival for this chapter, since it does not seem that new updates will arrive. Having made the necessary premises, let's find out together how this conversion went, and above all who will win the battle for Neighborville.
Plants Vs Zombies: a brain-licking offer
Plants Vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville comes to Nintendo Switch bringing with it a mass of content that is difficult to find elsewhere. The title offers first and foremost two modes, a single player, with a campaign that can be played as both plants and zombies, and a multiplayer, the real gist of the title. We can count on well twelve maps with hidden elements, twenty characters fully customizable playable games, to which they will be added three new unreleased heroes (Wildflower, Wizard and TV Head), which can be "unlocked" for 500.000 coins each. All, then, it can be played both online and offline, setting the option at the beginning of the game, but being able to switch from one mode to another in a very immediate and easy way. In case we will play offline, the game's artificial intelligence will take control of our opponents: Unfortunately, in some cases, it will actually be the intelligence of a brainless zombie.
Before even intervening on the gameplay side, in fact, EA intervened on the Nintendo Switch offer. First, they were readjusted in-game content of this Plants Vs Zombies. The Seasons system has undergone some changes to adapt to Nintendo's portable console, redistributing past content making it available for purchase at some emporiums that we can find scattered along the main map. From this point of view, it was also changed the system of currencies and how to spend them, so as to make it easier to purchase both the cosmetic elements that we can use during the clashes, and the numerous skills useful to complete the game.
The other side of the coin of this delicious offer is the difficulty in managing the huge amount of content. During the first hours of the game, especially for newbies, the disorientation will be total, and it will be necessary to spend a lot of time in the menus to understand where to start and how to manage all the possibilities that the title has to offer. In addition to the main campaign, in fact, we will soon be able to benefit from the contents of the various Seasons, and it will therefore be initially difficult to understand where to start. There was an attempt by EA to put things in order, but it is still a bit difficult to take the first steps.
The battle for Neighborville is (re) decided in portability
Plants Vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville basically remains the title we've come to know. Abandoned the tower defense gameplay of the first chapters of the saga, and embraced the 3D open maps of the chapters of the two Garden Warfare, we find ourselves in front of one third person shooter in semi open maps, where we will have to decide whether to take the side of the plants or the zombies to give them a good reason. Compared to previous experiences on other platforms of the title, the Nintendo Switch version defends itself very well and indeed, precisely because of the incredible offer we talked about, it might be the best version to play, but not only for these reasons.
The first detail that immediately leaps to the eyes, regarding this conversion on the Nintendo Switch, is the use of the Frostbite Engine. Plants Vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville is the first EA title to exploit it. Implementing this graphics engine took the developers several months of work, but the final result is very good. Compared to many other titles arriving on Switch with a minimum wage port, the work done on the graphic and technical sector is truly excellent, comparing with the other versions and showing the side a some drop in frame rate only in the most excited moments of the game.
The guys of PopCap Games and EA then worked hard to implement the other Switch features as well. First of all, you will be able to use the touch screen: it might seem like a trivial thing, but given the many possibilities offered to the game, using the touch screen of the Switch will be essential for extricate yourself from the intricate and numerous menus. Not only that, we will also have the opportunity to customize motion control: you can then use the motion sensors of the Joy-Con or the Pro Controller to aim at enemies, modifying various parameters dedicated to sensitivity.
Is the Switch incarnation of Plants Vs Zombies the best on the market?
Plants Vs Zombies: Battle for Neighborville is a well-structured and extremely entertaining title. The offer that comes with it on Switch, then, adds hours and hours of content thanks to the addition of the various DLCs released in the last year, which if added to a good dose of replayability due to the different feasible strategies, and the possibility to play it online with our friends (via subscription to the Nintendo Switch Online service), makes The Battle for Neighborville one of the most complete titles you can add to your library, on and off the Switch.
Technically speaking, the title holds up to comparison with its versions for other consoles, net of some minor graphic flaws and some drop in frame rate. Despite these subtleties and some initial confusion, Plants Vs Zombies: The Battle of Neighborville wins its debut on Switch, a unique, rich and fun experience which we definitely recommend to everyone.