Plants vs. Zombies (DS)

Game review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
Plants vs. Zombies (DS) Game Poster Image
Keep the undead at bay the organic way in this fun title.

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 6+
Based on 5 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

The game teaches you to plan ahead instead of acting impulsively.

Positive Role Models & Representations

You're the hero under attack in this comedic title, but rather than using traditional violent weapons, you fight the undead via organic means.

Ease of Play

The game is very straightforward and the controls are quite easy to grasp. Quick tutorials pop up explaining new weapons and gameplay methods when they're introduced.

Violence

You'll constantly fend off waves of attacking zombies with a variety of comedic plants (and other organic weapons). There's no blood, but when zombies are felled, their heads fall off. In the included mini-games, there is also a side-scrolling shooter game that uses guns.

Sex
Language
Consumerism

This is a game based on the popular PC game.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Plants vs. Zombies (DS) is the latest installment in this cartoon-like tower defense strategy game. Developer PopCap has previously released versions for the PC, iPhone and iPod Touch, Xbox Live, and more, and the heart of the game is exactly the same. What's different here are four new mini-games -- including "Air Raid," which is a side-scrolling shooter-like game, and "Heat Wave," which has players swap plants around with the stylus and encourage them with the DS's microphone. The violence in the game is too much for young children, but it's tempered greatly with humor and there's no blood shown on screen. There's no online gameplay, but players can compete in two-player versus mode with nearby DS owners, with one side playing as the plants and the other controlling the zombies.

User Reviews

Parent of a 7 and 10 year old Written byimnslp May 7, 2012

BEST GAME EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Totally worth the money. after playing it on the DS I was begging to get it for the iPhone
Adult Written byPrizeWinner89 February 14, 2011

Great and got it free!

I got this for FREE at www.prizerebel.com/index.php?r=3084809 I use it to get all my stuff now in my spare time. So glad I didn't have to pay full price t... Continue reading
Kid, 12 years old November 3, 2011

ON!

I looooooooooove it! its my FAVORITE game! if you're in a car ride and your kids just drive you craaaaazy get them this game! u wont hear a peep out of the... Continue reading
Kid, 8 years old April 14, 2016

Fun game for everyone

A fun game. I played it when i was younger. This game is for all ages. And can learn kids how to make their own strategies

What's it about?

The undead are trying to invade your house and eat your brains. Rather than pulling out firearms, you'll defend yourself with a variety of goofy plants and other organics like pea shooters, giant walnuts, and cherry "bombs". It's a game that seems born of '50s B-movies, but never loses its sense of humor. Zombies, for instance, wear things like pots and traffic cones on their head as protection. The gameplay mechanics in the campaign are the same as the PC version of the game.

In addition, this DS version of the title offers a series of mini-games, including four that are exclusive to this platform. These include a home run derby title, which blends zombies and baseball, and a side-scrolling shooter game.

Is it any good?

There's a reason Plants vs. Zombies is such a popular tower-defense game. It's goofy, genuinely funny, and the gameplay is rock solid. Whether you play for minutes or hours, you'll walk away happy. What the Nintendo DS version adds is a collection of new achievements (such as blow up 10 zombies with a single cherry bomb and beat a night level without picking up any sun) and four exclusive mini-games. They're all enjoyable diversions, but ultimately, it's the main game that's the most fun. The DS does, however, add a terrifically entertaining two-player versus mode for players in the same room.

The DS version suffers on two levels, though. Because there's so much going on onscreen with Plants vs. Zombies, the DS screen size is often overcrowded, which can make it hard to see everything happening at once. Also, with the iPhone version costing just $3.99, the $20 price tag on the DS version seems excessive. That said, the game is just as addictive now as it was when it was first released for the PC in 2009.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Which of the plants is your favorite and why? Would you rather play as the plants or the zombies?

  • Why do you think zombie games are so popular these days?

Game details

  • Platforms: Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi
  • Price: $19.95
  • Available online? Not available online
  • Developer: PopCap Games
  • Release date: January 18, 2011
  • Genre: Strategy
  • ESRB rating: E10+ for Animated Blood, Cartoon Violence

For kids who love thinking games

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate