The new Chinese-themed Plants vs Zombies Great Wall Edition has arrived, bringing new scenes and levels to PopCap’s popular gaming title. The new version is available now for Android - but only in Chinese. Bad news for local gamers is that the game is not really free - the app contains the conventional PvZ game with the Great Wall levels as paid extras. So you can’t even see the stages on the ancient wall without coughing up at least 2 RMB (US$0.32) to buy some virtual items.
As we reported last week, the new version is a tie-up between PopCap and local social media/gaming giant Tencent (HKG:0700.HK - News). As such, it’s a part of Tencent’s QQ Games platform, and so Tencent is guilty - er, I mean, responsible - for the rampant monetization in the game that keeps you off the ramparts until you’ve paid up. Worse still, when I tested it out I saw the graphics are pretty lousy and fuzzy - and my phone has only a middling 800x480 resolution. And it’s really buggy, throwing up error messages when loading. Plus it paralyzed my phone’s ability to take screenshots - and so I’ve sourced images from CNmo instead. It sounds like a bit of a disaster - and it is. The more user-friendly and accessible approach taken by Rovio with Angry Birds would’ve gotten the Plants vs Zombies Great Wall Edition a lot more traction. As it currently stands, there’s not so much excitement for the game online. On the bright side, the game has no ads.
Here are a few screengrabs:
We heard PopCap CEO, David Roberts, talk at a Q&A in Beijing last week, where he explained that another special Chinese edition of the popular zombie-bashing game will come later this year, based on the Three Kingdoms legends.
Grab Plants vs Zombies Great Wall Edition as an APK file from the QQ Games download page.
[Screenshots source: CNmo - article in Chinese]