Jeremy enjoys gaming when not helping manage the college he graduated from.
What Is Battle Mode in Plants vs. Zombies 2?
As an ongoing mobile game, Plants vs. Zombies 2: It's About Time receives continuous updates, one of its biggest being a player-vs-player mode called Battles (or "Battlez", as the game states).
But rather than compete directly, challengers play a level to see who can kill more zombies faster and thus collect more points, with winners gradually acquiring coins, gems, mints, and other prizes. But as you advance, your competition scales with you—how can you keep up with the pros?
How to Become a Battlez Mode Expert
Here are ten tips to master Battlez mode in Plants vs. Zombies 2!
- Take Advantage of Practice Runs
- Pay Attention to Opposing Plants
- Plant Levels Count; Upgrades Don't
- Use Potato Mine and Sun-Shroom
- Utilize Buffed Plants
- Adapt to the Battle's Length
- Strike Early for Big Points
- Know When to Fold 'Em
- Use Plant Food Powers
- Push Zombies to the Front of the Lane
1. Take Advantage of Practice Runs
Each time a new battle level opens, you have an optional quest to practice that level three times. If you complete all three trials, not only do you get extra mints (a resource used to unlock plants), you'll have advanced knowledge of the level's mechanics.
Try experimenting with different strategies during your practice runs to see what works and what doesn't. And don't worry if you're still unsure even after your trials, as you can always glean more ideas from . . .
2. Pay Attention to Opposing Plants
Once you've completed a level, it shows your score compared to your opponent's. You also learn what plants they used; if you lost, look at their ensemble for clues as to what strategies might work best.
The level of their plants might be slightly different than yours, but the game does a good job of keeping things fair, automatically pitting you against stronger players the more you win, and vice versa.
3. Plant Levels Count; Upgrades Don't
PvZ2's battle mode factors in your plants' levels, making it worth your while to collect seed packets and develop them. Often the store has daily packets available for coins (the easiest resource to collect), so login consistently to reap the market's harvest.
Conversely, any passive upgrades (extra starting sun, refunds when you shovel a plant, etc.) aren't utilized in battle mode. This helps balance the game for free-to-play users, as some permanent upgrades can only be bought with real money. However, it also means that you're limited to just six plants—choose wisely. Each level requires an individual strategy, but you'll often want to include . . .
4. Use Potato Mine and Sun-Shroom
Battles typically give an initial amount of Sun (money) you can spend on whatever plants you wish; Potato Mine is one of your best options. He's cheap, powerful, and can be planted ahead of time, meaning that unlike most insta-kills, you can set him up before the level begins. Just make sure you wait a few seconds for his detonator to arm before you actually start.
Some levels prevent you from including sun-producers in your lineup, but for those that don't, try bringing Sun-shroom. His low cost barely detracts from your initial resources, and he eventually grows in size, producing big clumps of 75 Sun.
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5. Utilize Buffed Plants
You'll want to choose plants based on their level and by which undead enemies you'll face, but also pay attention to so-called "buffz and bruisez", alterations made to each level that boost or reduce the damage certain types of plants deal.
For instance, some levels vamp close-range warriors like Bonk Choy, while others empower heat-focused troops like Fire Peashooter. Be sure to use these modifications to your advantage.
6. Adapt to the Battle's Length
Like normal levels, different battle maps last for different lengths of time, another factor to consider when choosing plants. For instance, in shorter missions, you might only get one or two uses of sluggishly-recharged plants like Cherry Bomb, so consider using faster warriors.
And longer levels work well with gradually-strengthened units like Pea Pod, granting more time to build him up.
7. Strike Early for Big Points
Mastering battle mode isn't just about defeating zombies, but defeating them quickly, meaning you score more points the closer they die to their spawn point.
While defensive units like Wall-nut certainly have their place, they tend to take up your front line slots; often it's better to devote to offense with close-range attackers like Spikeweed or one-offs like Potato Mine and Lava Guava. Explode-o-nut is as useful as ever, although his premium status means you'll have to shell out actual money to obtain him.
8. Know When to Fold 'Em
The cool thing about Battlez mode is you don't have to worry about zombies invading your house, as you have unlimited lawn mowers. They don't score, but you only "lose" by earning less points than your opponent—you never fail if a lane gets overrun.
Sometimes it's best to ignore lanes that are getting swarmed, devoting your remaining resources to surviving fields. After all, killing the zombies close to your house isn't worth many points; better to excel in two or three lanes than barely scrape by in all five.
9. Use Plant Food Powers
In these levels, you're on a timer, and you don't get any special bonus for leftover plant food powers you save, so don't be conservative with your temporary boosts. Many maps have zombies continuously drop more, so as you kill undead with one super-attack, you'll likely gain an upgrade for another.
Again, focus less on defense and more on offense. Powers that deal large damage over a big area are best; for instance, Laser Bean deals massive damage to a full lane. You can also use plant food to immediately ready a Potato Mine placed after the level began, simultaneously creating two freebies in the process.
10. Push Zombies to the Front of the Lane
Remember, zombies score more closer to their entrance point. Thus, it's often best to avoid traditional defenders that block in favor of anything that pushes or pulls, letting you relocate zombies for maximum points before killing them. Units like Hurrikale, Chard Guard, and Spikeweed (with his plant food effect) all do the trick.
Final Tips for Battlez Mode
All the strategy in the world might not matter once you face maxed-level plants, so be sure to diligently login and acquire seed packets to maintain a competitive ranking. Additionally, the more matches you win in a row, the better your prizes. But above all, have fun—no one wins every match.
Despite debuting several years back, PvZ2 still receives support as of this writing, and it could potentially expand Battlez mode (beyond the current weekly missions) in future updates. But for now, as we eagerly await future tower defense levels, share your experiences with Battlez mode and I'll see you at our next gaming countdown!
© 2019 Jeremy Gill