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Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare guide

plants vs zombies garden warfare guide header
PopCap Games delivered a shooter to be proud of in its first crack at the genre. Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare might not be perfect, but it’s a colorful and adorably violent third-person take on the sort of complex class-based play that one would normally associate with DICE’s Battlefield series. One of the coolest aspects of the game is the asymmetrical layout of classes between the Plant and Zombie factions. Every single one of the eight classes carries a different loadout and requires a different approach. Strategy is mixed up even more once you add the game’s three different match types to the mix.

We take a look at all of this here in our Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare guide. Click through each tile to find tips and strategies for surviving in the never-ending struggle between plants and their un-mortal natural enemy, zombies.

Plants faction

PvZGW-guide-Plant

Learn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Plants faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Zombies faction

PvZGW guide-ZombieLearn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Zombies faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Boss Mode

PvZGW-guide-BossMode

A quick word on the strategic play in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare‘s Boss Mode. Inspired by Battlefield’s Commander mode.

Team Vanquish

PvZGW-guide-TeamVanquish

Team Vanquish is the Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare take on Team Deathmatch. Here are some tips for surviving.

Gardens & Graveyards

PvZGW-guide-GardensGraveyardsIn Gardens & Graveyards, Zombies fight to capture the Plants’ gardens, opening more of the map as they go. Inspired by Battlefield’s Rush mode.

Garden Ops

PvZGW-guide-GardenOps

Garden Ops is a wave-based cooperative survival mode for four players. Plants protect their garden against an onslaught of Zombies.

PvZGW guide-Plants faction

Plants faction: Classes & Loadouts

First, some general notes on classes in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare. All characters – Plants and Zombies alike – level up using a challenge-based system. Completing a challenge earns you a star; get enough stars, and that particular class will level up. You can view your open challenges at any time by hitting the start button during a match. They vary, but you’ll generally be tasked with using one of your skills a certain number of times or “vanquishing” (no one is “killed” in Garden Warfare) a certain number of a specific type of enemy.

Every class has three different abilities, mapped to the LB, RB, and Y buttons. You start with only one of those skills unlocked and then get the next two with your first two experience levels. Note that leveling up isn’t quite enough to get the ability; you’ll have to respawn after leveling up in order to use your new toy. Most abilities are limited in how often they can be used by a cooldown bar. When the ability icon is greyed out, it’s still recharging. Certain abilities, such as the Cactus’ Tallnut or the Scientist’s Sticky Explody Ball, can be used multiple times before they need a cooldown; a number inside the icon box lets you know how many uses you have left.

The primary weapons for all classes in Garden Warfare have infinite ammo, so fire freely. Also, while each class has different health totals, there’s a single rule that carries across all of them when it comes to healing. All injured Plants and Zombies automatically recover up to half their total health when injured; it takes a proper healer (Sunflower or Scientist) to get you the rest of the way there.

PvZGW-guide-peashooterPeashooter: The Peashooter is the standard infantry class for the Plants faction. It’s a fast-moving little peapod with a short stature that makes it easily overlooked by advancing zombies. The Peashooter’s primary attack is its pea-shooting nose, which fires large, slow-moving, high-damage projectiles, roughly one per second. The Hyper ability briefly boosts your speed and jump height, which is doubly useful for sneaking behind an advancing enemy force and scrambling back to safety. The high jump is especially handy for leaping over obstacles that effectively cut off your pursuers from firing.

The Peashooter’s Chili Bean Bomb is basically a grenade, though note that there’s no throwing arc in Garden Warfare. Using the ability simply sends the Chili Bean bouncing out in front of you in a straight line; it explodes 2-3 seconds after you drop it with enough force to take even a full-health enemy near the center of its blast radius. The Peashooter’s lineup of abilities is rounded out by the Pea Gatling, which locks your character in place and converts its primary weapon to a rapid-fire chaingun type of attack. You can stay that way until the Gatling’s ammo runs dry, as seen in a meter at the bottom of the screen.

The Peashooter is effective when working with a group, but it’s also perfectly capable of acting alone. The Hyper ability allows it to skirt behind enemy lines and get to out-of-reach locations, the perfect setup for Chili Bean Bomb and/or Pea Gatling ambushes. Having splash damage on your primary weapon makes this a good option for beginners too, since you’re able to dish out damage without being a crack shot.

PvZGW-guide-chomperChomper: The Plants’ Chomper is the only dedicated melee attacker in Garden Warfare. Your primary attack is a literal chomp of its Venus Flytrap-like jaws. If you manage to maneuver behind an enemy, you’ll see a circular red icon appear on their back. Hit the attack button when that pops up to perform an unblockable sneak attack that devours the enemy whole. Take note however that you’re completely defenseless to other forms of attack while devouring someone, which means you can easily be gunned down before your meal is finished. What’s more, the Chomper can’t use any abilities while its mouth is full, and it always take a few seconds to swallow an enemy you’ve eaten.

The Chomper’s abilities are all built around sneaky play. Burrow allows you to sneak around underground for a brief period of time. The red sneak attack icon mentioned above also appears beneath an enemy’s feet when you get close enough; use that for quick and easy kills. The Goop attack is the Chomper’s only projectile weapon, though it’s more of a support tool than a proper attack. Land a successful hit on an enemy and you’ll briefly slow it down and lock out its ability usage; this is a great way to set up a sneak attack kill. Lastly, the Chomper’s Spikeweed attack briefly immobilizes any enemy that steps on it, again making for easy pickings.

In Garden Warfare‘s objective-based games, you’ll generally want to keep the Chomper close to home, as it makes a great base defender when the enemy’s goal is to capture or destroy your home turf. For Team Vanquish matches, or for players that prefer more of an offensive role, stick to the front lines and use your Burrow sparingly. It’s very easy to get one kill with that ability, but it’s hard to survive after that if you pop up in the middle of a group of Zombies. Choose your targets carefully and work with your team. A Chomper that’s busy easy makes a very tempting target; if you time it right, you can use your Burrow to take out one Zombies and distract a bunch of others while your teammates mow them down.

PvZGW-guide-sunflowerSunflower: The healer class of the Plant faction is the Sunflower. This happy little fella is equipped with an SMG-like primary weapon. Rapid-fire shots, but most effective at close ranges. There’s nothing complicated about it, but an effective Sunflower relies less on its main weapon than it does on its healing abilities and its potent secondary attack. The Sunflower also revives downed friendlies twice as fast as any of the other Plant classes.

You’ve got two options for healing friendly Plants as the Sunflower. Your heal beam tethers you to one target by a string of bright, yellow sunlight. Tapping the ability’s button cycles through all nearby targets, allowing you to quickly choose which Plant you want to heal. You also get a Heal Flower, which is a miniature, potted version of yourself. During its brief lifespan it spews out healing stars that anyone can collect; this is the only way to heal yourself. The Sunbeam is your only offensive ability as the Sunflower; much like the Peashooter’s Pea Gatling, using it immobilizes you until you deactivate the ability or run out of ammo (at which point there’s a cooldown).

The Sunflower works best supporting the frontlines or serving as rearguard protection against flanking attacks. Its SMG primary is meant for close-range action, but the Sunflower isn’t quite as mobile as other classes in the game. Better to have it back up the Peashooters and Chompers on the front lines with carefully deployed Heal Flowers and Heal Beams. Just don’t shy away from using the Sunbeam. It has incredible range and does big damage if you can sustain your attack on a single enemy for a few seconds. Healing should be your top priority as the Sunflower, but be ready for any opportunity to take down an advancing horde with your Sunbeam.

PvZGW-guide-cactusCactus: The Cactus is the sniper class of the Plant faction, equipped with a long-zooming, semi-automatic fire primary weapon that deals big damage and fires as quickly as you can pull the trigger. Headshots mean something in Garden Warfare, so always aim high in the hopes of scoring criticals.

The most useful Cactus ability is its Garlic Drone, a deployable unit that takes to the skies (LB/RB adjust elevation) and rains fire on enemies below using its auto-fire cannon or its limited-use airstrike. The airstrike is greyed out at first, but it becomes available if your drone stays aloft for long enough. It’s got a cooldown once you use it, and you’ll typically have enough time in the life of an average drone – whether or not you’re shot down, a meter at the bottom of the screen dictates how much juice you’ve got left – to fire two airstrikes. The Cactus also has the ability to Potato Mines (proximity explosives) and Tallnuts (a wall that can be used as cover).

The ideal strategy for Cactus players is to maintain distance from the enemy. Its primary weapon zooms in from a greater distance than any other class, and it’s easy to pick off advancing Zombies from the rear of the pack as your teammates on the front lines keep them busy. Make judicious use of your Potato Mines, especially if you’re operating alone with no one to protect you. It’s easy to be flanked when you’re busy focusing on long-distance fire. Use your drone whenever the enemy makes a push. Your aerial support will slow them down, hopefully long enough for either teammates to clean them up or your airstrike to become available.

Plants faction

PvZGW-guide-Plant

Learn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Plants faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Zombies faction

PvZGW guide-ZombieLearn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Zombies faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Boss Mode

PvZGW-guide-BossMode

A quick word on the strategic play in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare‘s Boss Mode. Inspired by Battlefield’s Commander mode.

Team Vanquish

PvZGW-guide-TeamVanquish

Team Vanquish is the Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare take on Team Deathmatch. Here are some tips for surviving.

Gardens & Graveyards

PvZGW-guide-GardensGraveyardsIn Gardens & Graveyards, Zombies fight to capture the Plants’ gardens, opening more of the map as they go. Inspired by Battlefield’s Rush mode.

Garden Ops

PvZGW-guide-GardenOps

Garden Ops is a wave-based cooperative survival mode for four players. Plants protect their garden against an onslaught of Zombies.

PvZGW guide-Zombie faction

Zombies faction: Classes & Loadouts

First, some general notes on classes in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare. All characters – Plants and Zombies alike – level up using a challenge-based system. Completing a challenge earns you a star; get enough stars, and that particular class will level up. You can view your open challenges at any time by hitting the start button during a match. They vary, but you’ll generally be tasked with using one of your skills a certain number of times or “vanquishing” (no one is “killed” in Garden Warfare) a certain number of a specific type of enemy.

Every class has three different abilities, mapped to the LB, RB, and Y buttons. You start with only one of those skills unlocked and then get the next two with your first two experience levels. Note that leveling up isn’t quite enough to get the ability; you’ll have to respawn after leveling up in order to use your new toy. Most abilities are limited in how often they can be used by a cooldown bar. When the ability icon is greyed out, it’s still recharging. Certain abilities, such as the Cactus’ Tallnut or the Scientist’s Sticky Explody Ball, can be used multiple times before they need a cooldown; a number inside the icon box lets you know how many uses you have left.

The primary weapons for all classes in Garden Warfare have infinite ammo, so fire freely. Also, while each class has different health totals, there’s a single rule that carries across all of them when it comes to healing. All injured Plants and Zombies automatically recover up to half their total health when injured; it takes a proper healer (Sunflower or Scientist) to get you the rest of the way there.

PvZGW guide-FootSoldierFoot Soldier: The Foot Soldier is the basic infantry unit of the Zombies faction. Its primary weapon is a fast-firing, low-damage assault rifle with a healthy clip size. It’s physically larger and more cumbersome to control than the agile Peashooter, but that is balanced by its ability to spray-and-pray across the front lines. It’s also got a Rocket Jump as one of its abilities, allowing you to reach sniper roosts that are inaccessible to all other classes in the game.

The Foot Soldier is built for offense. Its Rocket Jump is useful for positioning, but the class’s other two abilities are about putting some hurt on the enemy. The ZPG – Zombie-Propelled Grenade – is the Plants Vs. Zombies take on a rocket launcher. Take care though; there’s a 2-3 second animation that plays out before you can fire the slow-moving rocket, which then travels in a straight line until it makes contact with something solid. Great for stationary enemies, like Gatling and Sunbeam-using Peashooters and Sunflowers. The Foot Soldier’s Zombie Stink Grenade is a smoke grenade that does low, persistent damage to any enemy standing inside the cloud.

Foot Soldiers operate best as part of a larger group. It’s almost always going to lose in a 1v1 showdown against a Peashooter, barring terrible marksmanship or a lucky ZPG shot. If you can get up onto a handy roof and lay down fire from there, great. Just don’t stay in one elevated position for too long, lest you become easy pickings for Cactus snipers. Keep moving and group up with friendlies before you push toward the enemy ranks.

PvZGW-guide-engineerEngineer: The Engineer is a powerful damage-dealer within the Zombie faction. Its primary weapon is the Concrete Launcher, which is essentially an explode-on-impact grenade launcher. Note that you can pair Concrete Launcher fire with the Engineer’s Jackhammer ability, which sees him get up on top of the roadwork tool and use it like it’s a hydraulics-powered pogo stick. Doing so ups your movement rate, though take note that everyone will hear you coming. Not exactly great for stealth.

The Zombot Drone is the Engineer’s most potent ability. It’s the Zombie faction’s aerial support unit, which you can deploy for a limited time (there’s a meter at the bottom of the screen) and use to rain down fire from your machine gun-like cannon or with airstrikes. You’ll need to stay aloft for a little bit before you can use an airstrike, and you can usually fit two airstrikes into the uninterrupted lifespan of one Zombot Drone. The Engineer’s other ability is a Sonic Grenade that temporarily stuns any enemies caught in its blast.

The Engineer is perhaps the most flexible of all the classes in Garden Warfare. The Jackhammer and Concrete Launcher make a deadly combination in front line support roles, especially when it comes to countering Chompers. You can only stay up on that jackhammer for 20 seconds, but a well-timed stun grenade makes it easy to mop up any remaining forces or give yourself the breathing room to pull back. Don’t forget to use your Zombot Drone though; it can really help to shift momentum in your team’s favor if you deploy it when the opposing team is facing a heavy push.

PvZGW-guide-scientistScientist: The Scientist is the healer class of the Zombie faction. Its primary weapon is a “Goo Blaster” shotgun with a slow rate of fire but a devastating damage output at close ranges. It’s best to pair this with your Warp skill, which can be used twice before requiring a cooldown. Use Warp when you’re medium distance from a target to jump in close enough for your shotgun to finish them off in one or two blasts, then use Warp again to get yourself to safety. The Scientist also revives downed friendlies twice as fast as any other Zombie classes.

The Scientist’s only healing option is its Zombie Heal Station deployable. It spurts out purple goo in all directions when dropped, healing any friendlies that wander into its area of effect. The Scientist also has a Sticky Explody Ball, which is, for all intents and purposes, a proximity mine. You’ve got two that you can throw out to start with, but you can have up to four deployed on the map at any given time if you wait through two additional cooldowns.

Scientists are a great help on or near the front lines, since they can support Foot Soldiers, Engineers, and All-Stars with their healing stations while also dealing a fair amount of damage to rushing enemies. You’re not really a master in any one category as the Scientist, but you’re also the Zombie faction’s only healer, and thus, an essential cog on the battlefield. Prioritize keeping you team safe, but be mindful of opportunities to use Warp in an offensive role, to get the drop on the enemy front lines.

PvZGW guide-AllStarAll-Star: The Zombies faction is all about rushing in to attack, and the All-Star should be at the forefront of any attacking force. It’s the tank of this bunch, with the highest health total of any class in the game and an automatic fire Football Cannon with a bottomless ammo clip; be mindful of it overheating, however. The Football Cannon is most effective when fired in short bursts, which keeps the accuracy up and the heat levels down.

As the beefy, healthful tank of the Zombies faction, the All-Star is the only class equipped with a melee attack: the Sprint Tackle. It’s a charge attack that does heavy damage when it connects, knocking back any Plants that manage to survive. The Imp Punt works like a grenade that you kick; much like the Foot Soldier’s ZPG, there’s a brief period of charge-up time before the kicked imp sails off toward its target. The All-Star’s ability set is rounded out by a deployable Dummy Shield (two available to start with; four can live on the map at any one time) that blocks enemy movement and incoming fire.

The All-Star should be the vanguard of any Zombie assault. It’s ability to soak up damage and rush forward quickly using the Sprint Tackle makes it positively deadly on the front lines, especially when Foot Soldiers and Engineers are on hand to provide support. In a faction that’s already built around heavy offensive play and in-your-face action, the All-Star still stands out as the cornerstone of any assault.

Plants faction

PvZGW-guide-Plant

Learn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Plants faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Zombies faction

PvZGW guide-ZombieLearn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Zombies faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Boss Mode

PvZGW-guide-BossMode

A quick word on the strategic play in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare‘s Boss Mode. Inspired by Battlefield’s Commander mode.

Team Vanquish

PvZGW-guide-TeamVanquish

Team Vanquish is the Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare take on Team Deathmatch. Here are some tips for surviving.

Gardens & Graveyards

PvZGW-guide-GardensGraveyardsIn Gardens & Graveyards, Zombies fight to capture the Plants’ gardens, opening more of the map as they go. Inspired by Battlefield’s Rush mode.

Garden Ops

PvZGW-guide-GardenOps

Garden Ops is a wave-based cooperative survival mode for four players. Plants protect their garden against an onslaught of Zombies.

PvZGW-guide-bossmode

The first thing to know about Boss Mode is that it’s exclusive to the Xbox One version of Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare. It’s basically a slightly dumbed down version of Battlefield’s Commander Mode, which gives you a top-down view of the warzone and an assortment of tools you can use to support your team. The Plant faction’s “Boss” is Crazy Dave’s flying RV and the Zombie faction’s “Boss” is Dr. Zomboss’s ZomBlimp, but the two are functionally the same.

To get to Boss Mode, you first need to select it from the character spawn screen; it should appear as a fifth option, below the faction’s soldier classes. If it’s not there, that means somebody is already in the match’s sole Boss slot for your team. Keep an eye out with each new spawn though; it’s very easy to back out of Boss Mode and return to on-the-ground action, so you may get your shot even if the RV/ZomBlimp is occupied when you first look.

The central component of boss mode involves collecting resources – sun icons for the Plants, brains for the Zombies – as they float past your view. Collecting them is as simple as moving the cursor over them or tapping them on the touchscreen, if you’re using SmartGlass. You can also interact with Boss Mode using Kinect, with your hand controlling the cursor. Each of your four Boss Mode abilities costs a certain amount of resources, though their use is also limited by a cooldown timer.

Your four abilities are pretty self-explanatory: Spotting (75 suns/brains) reveals the location of enemies on the map for all of your teammates; Heal (100 suns/brains) drops a healing station (potted sunflower/zombie healing station) that’s a little more powerful than each team’s healers can offer; Airstrike (250 suns/brains) lays down an area-demolishing airstrike that’s good for racking up quick kills; and Resurrect (250 suns/brains) brings all downed players back to life in the area that you mark, much like you would with an airstrike.

That’s about the extent of Boss Mode. Players on the ground can shoot you out of the sky when you’re in the boss’s seat, but it takes quite awhile since the RV/ZomBlimp spawn with 2,000 health.

Plants faction

PvZGW-guide-Plant

Learn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Plants faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Zombies faction

PvZGW guide-ZombieLearn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Zombies faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Boss Mode

PvZGW-guide-BossMode

A quick word on the strategic play in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare‘s Boss Mode. Inspired by Battlefield’s Commander mode.

Team Vanquish

PvZGW-guide-TeamVanquish

Team Vanquish is the Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare take on Team Deathmatch. Here are some tips for surviving.

Gardens & Graveyards

PvZGW-guide-GardensGraveyardsIn Gardens & Graveyards, Zombies fight to capture the Plants’ gardens, opening more of the map as they go. Inspired by Battlefield’s Rush mode.

Garden Ops

PvZGW-guide-GardenOps

Garden Ops is a wave-based cooperative survival mode for four players. Plants protect their garden against an onslaught of Zombies.

PvZGW-guide-teamvanquish

Think of Team Vanquish – known in most circles as Team Deathmatch – as your “getting started” mode for Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare. It’s great for getting a feel for the game or the occasional quick play session, but you quickly outgrow it. You’ll want to use it primarily as a quick way to unlock the level 2/3 skills for each class, since the narrowed, no-objective focus and smaller maps make it easier to complete those first, relatively simple challenges.

For total newcomers to competitive multiplayer gaming, here’s how it works: two teams of 12 Zombies and Plants apiece face off against one another, with the first team to reach 50 Vanquishes (Garden Warfare‘s word for “kills”) being named the winner. There’s no time limit; only the kills matter. This is a mode where everyone should be reviving downed friendlies. Healers can do it faster than anyone else on their teams, but in a mode where every kill counts toward a win, bringing comrades back to life makes a big difference. When you’re the one who’s down, don’t immediately respawn; wait and see if someone will bring you back. And if you’re the one doing the reviving, know that you can still fire your primary weapon while you doing that… so be sure to do so!

This is as uncomplicated as things get. There are two Team Vanquish variants in Garden Warfare. One is found in the Welcome Mat playlist, which is meant for beginners. The worse you play, the more health you have each time you spawn in. Isn’t that nice? There’s also a Classic Team Vanquish option, which eliminates all class-specific customizations and upgrades.

Plants faction

PvZGW-guide-Plant

Learn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Plants faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Zombies faction

PvZGW guide-ZombieLearn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Zombies faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Boss Mode

PvZGW-guide-BossMode

A quick word on the strategic play in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare‘s Boss Mode. Inspired by Battlefield’s Commander mode.

Team Vanquish

PvZGW-guide-TeamVanquish

Team Vanquish is the Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare take on Team Deathmatch. Here are some tips for surviving.

Gardens & Graveyards

PvZGW-guide-GardensGraveyardsIn Gardens & Graveyards, Zombies fight to capture the Plants’ gardens, opening more of the map as they go. Inspired by Battlefield’s Rush mode.

Garden Ops

PvZGW-guide-GardenOps

Garden Ops is a wave-based cooperative survival mode for four players. Plants protect their garden against an onslaught of Zombies.

PvZGW-guide-gardensgraveyards

Gardens & Graveyards is a slightly tweaked take on Battlefield’s Rush mode. Plants are always defending and Zombies are always attacking. For Zombies, the goal is to stand inside the colored circle denoting the Plant’s garden. Stay there long enough and a meter at the top of the screen fills with purple, signaling that you’ve captured the garden. Each captured garden opens up more of the map, leading to the next one. Capture all the gardens and you’ll have to complete a final objective, which could involve ferrying a certain number of zombies into the Plants’ mansion or setting four bombs to take out their Tactical Cuke. The goal of the Plant faction is to keep each garden safe; if five minutes go by without a garden being captured (seven minutes for the first one), and the counter hits zero with no zombies in the capture zone, the Plants win.

That’s the basic layout, though each faction has a number of advantages it can bring to bear. For the Zombies, it’s all about activating the teleporter for each garden. Once a garden is captured, that location becomes the new spawn point leading to the next garden. There’s always a non-functional teleportation machine roughly midway to the objective. Only the Engineer can see it (via on screen icon) and only the Engineer can fix it. Once that’s done, a glowing purple door appears near the Zombie spawn; step into it and you’re whisked off to a much closer location to stage a garden assault from.

The Zombies can also call in AI-controlled reinforcements from gold-glowing mounds of dirt. You’ll need to unlock these summons by purchasing sticker packs; the 1,000 coin Reinforcements Pack is the way to go if you want to bulk up your stock of summons. There’s an assortment of zombies you can call on, and a menu pops up when you interact with the dirt mound to let you know what you’ve got access to. Plants can also summon in assistance at gold-glowing flowerpots, though it’s best to save these precious summons for the Garden Ops mode if you can. Zombies don’t need to save summons since Gardens & Graveyards is the only mode Zombies can be summoned in; just make sure you use them during a heavy push and not while your team is regrouping.

Both teams will want to stick to the general strategy of adhering to class-specific roles. Don’t revive if you’re not a healer, don’t rush the front lines – or the capture point – if you’re built for long-distance fire. Play to your class’s strengths. Sure, sometimes you’ll see an undefended garden or a downed teammate with no enemies nearby, and in those situations by all means do what you can to help your team. But put your priority on sticking to your class role.

Much like Team Vanquish, there are Welcome Mat and Classic variants of Gardens & Graveyards. The former gives you more health with each spawn depending on how poorly you’re playing and the latter eliminates all class customization options.

Plants faction

PvZGW-guide-Plant

Learn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Plants faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Zombies faction

PvZGW guide-ZombieLearn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Zombies faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Boss Mode

PvZGW-guide-BossMode

A quick word on the strategic play in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare‘s Boss Mode. Inspired by Battlefield’s Commander mode.

Team Vanquish

PvZGW-guide-TeamVanquish

Team Vanquish is the Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare take on Team Deathmatch. Here are some tips for surviving.

Gardens & Graveyards

PvZGW-guide-GardensGraveyardsIn Gardens & Graveyards, Zombies fight to capture the Plants’ gardens, opening more of the map as they go. Inspired by Battlefield’s Rush mode.

Garden Ops

PvZGW-guide-GardenOps

Garden Ops is a wave-based cooperative survival mode for four players. Plants protect their garden against an onslaught of Zombies.

PvZGW-guide-gardenops

Garden Ops is the PvZ take on Gears of War’s beloved Horde Mode. Four Plants, 10 waves of Zombies, brutally spiking difficulty as you hit the higher rounds. Moreso than in any other mode, a headset is strongly recommended. You need to communicate to effectively fend off the Zombie waves, particularly during the two boss rounds. The first thing a team needs to agree on is where to defend. Each map has three different locations you can plant a garden in. The waves don’t start until you plant that garden, so take your time to survey the map and choose the most defensible location.

The basic objective is to keep Zombie forces from destroying your home garden. They’ll rush in from various points on the map – you’ll always know where thanks to handy on screen zombie head icons denoting their spawn location – and try to attack the garden. Most of them will be melee-only attackers, especially early on, but you’ll eventually start to see all of the standard classes from competitive multiplayer joining in as well, along with the odd boss during certain rounds. You’ll almost always want to prioritize the ranged attackers, since they can chip away at your garden once they’ve got line of sight. The only real exception to this are the slow-moving walkers housed in coffins and port-a-potties; they regular, old melee attackers, but they absorb a lot of punishment.

Plants should rely heavily on any summons they’ve unlocked from sticker packs (the 1,000 coin Reinforcements Pack is the best way to bulk up your resources between matches). You can summon plants at any gold-glowing flowerpot. Each summon attacks (or defends, in the case of the heal flower) in a different way. Experiment with what you get to optimize your defenses. Put long-range flower turrets in positions that give them good line of sight across the map. Keep support units, especially Zombie-slowing ice plants and fire-breathing plants, close to your garden. Zombies will also home in on the garden, and these close range summons can clear out clusters with minimal assistance if you pick the right ones for the right flowerpots.

Twice per match, you’ll face off against a Boss Wave. Before the wave starts, a slot machine-like apparatus appears on the screen and spins automatically. Wherever it lands, that’s what you’re going to face. Certain bosses, like the Yeti or the Disco Zombie, will zero in on your garden like any other attacker. Watch out for Tombstone bosses though; these a zombie spawn points that you’ll need to go out into the map and destroy before the wave can end. You’ll also sometimes be able to score coin bonuses from the slots. Each of the three fields in the slot machine equals one boss (or bonus, in the case of a coin reward). If three of the same thing line up, you face a “Super” version of that boss wave.

You’ll also occasionally be gifted with bonus objectives in a given wave. These are usually straightforward objectives, like take out specially marked zombie “Chieftans” or finish the wave in a certain amount of time. Completing these objectives earns you bonus PvZ coins. Take note, however, that these rewards aren’t usually huge. Don’t risk everything for a paltry reward if it’s going to be too difficult. Downed teammates can be revived for a short period, or they can use a self-revive if they’ve gotten it from a sticker pack, though only three can be used per match overall. If you don’t manage to revive a downed teammate, they don’t return until the next round.

The setup for Garden Ops is simple enough, but survival becomes a real challenge in the later rounds. You’ve got to keep the garden safe for 10 full waves, but there’s also an eleventh wave. The garden no longer matters at this point, and your team is tasked instead with making it to an escape zone before the 1:45 clock counts down to zero.

Generally speaking, you’re going to want to have one of each class in play for a round of Garden Ops. It’s possible to complete the mode without the abilities of all four, but it’s considerably tougher. Each class is useful for different situations. A Sunflower is always good to have on hand for healing purposes, a Peashooter can use Hyper to reach otherwise inaccessible sniper roosts, a Cactus can use Tallnuts and mines to block access to the garden (and let’s not forget that drone), and a Chomper’s Spikeweed traps immediately eliminate heavily protected coffin/port-a-potty zombies.

Plants faction

PvZGW-guide-Plant

Learn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Plants faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Zombies faction

PvZGW guide-ZombieLearn all about the different soldier classes and play strategies for the Zombies faction in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare.

Boss Mode

PvZGW-guide-BossMode

A quick word on the strategic play in Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare‘s Boss Mode. Inspired by Battlefield’s Commander mode.

Team Vanquish

PvZGW-guide-TeamVanquish

Team Vanquish is the Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare take on Team Deathmatch. Here are some tips for surviving.

Gardens & Graveyards

PvZGW-guide-GardensGraveyardsIn Gardens & Graveyards, Zombies fight to capture the Plants’ gardens, opening more of the map as they go. Inspired by Battlefield’s Rush mode.

Garden Ops

PvZGW-guide-GardenOps

Garden Ops is a wave-based cooperative survival mode for four players. Plants protect their garden against an onslaught of Zombies.

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