EA is giving out free DLC without microtransactions?
I really enjoyed Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, which was a pleasant surprise amidst a sea of "me too" shooters. I enjoyed it so much in fact that I still play it, and I find myself spending more time with it lately than Titanfall. Garden Warfare has legs, especially with the first DLC pack that dropped this week and without the existence of microtransactions (knock on wood).
As the first add-on, Garden Variety updates the game with a brand new mode, a new map, more customization options, and best of all -- it's free.
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Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare: Garden Variety pack (PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One [tested])
Developer: PopCap Games
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Released: March 18, 2014 (Xbox 360, Xbox One) / TBA (PC)
The most obvious addition the Garden Variety DLC pack brings is the Gnome Bomb mode, reminiscent of many "bomb the base" gametypes from old-school FPS titles. At the start, each map is broken up into three "A, B, and C" points for each side, and a bomb is placed in the middle. Teams fight over the bomb and attempt to set it at each point, defending it as it ticks while the opposing side tries to defuse it.
It's as simple as it sounds, and it's pretty fun to play -- especially since there are only two competitive game modes in the retail version. There's always action going on since you can see where the bomb is at all times, so there's never a dull moment. With a few more additions like Gnome Bomb, Garden Warfare will only get better and better with time.
The new map is Chomp Town, which is similar aesthetically to Garden Center but with a completely different layout. It's probably the closest to a traditional Call of Duty map, with tons of rooftops to survey and pick people off from. Chomp Town doesn't feature the most original of designs, but it's a great level to add to the rotation, and can be played with Gnome Bomb as well as Team Vanquish.
The rest of the wardrobe additions are pretty nominal, but there are a lot of them -- which is good news for people who like to customize their character to the max. Instead of just granting you all 100 costumes though the game makes you earn them by way of 20,000 Coin packs, which are custom tailored to either Plants or Zombies. It's not much, but it's something to strive for and earn while you're having fun online.
I highly recommend picking up Garden Warfare, as both the Xbox One and the Xbox 360 versions are a ton of fun. As long as EA doesn't screw things up and add microtransactions to the mix, I'll be playing this one for quite a while.