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Complain about Plants VS Zombies being much too easy

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  • zaphod77
    replied
    the real issue with balls being so easy to lock on sorcerers lair is that it relights the ball saver.

    The multiball modes aren't that high scoring, it's the fact that you can keep relighting that ballsaver so easily. That's how I play forever on that table. i keep relighting that ballsaver over and over.have the mode start hole open, but no ballsaver? relight it by locking a ball in the gargoyle first. It not up? relight the ballsaver before flailing at the standups that relight it.

    Another way to handle the multiballs is to have it NOT relight the ballsaver when you lock a ball, but give you a skillshot instead.

    Now on a table like, say, Iron Man, you really need to relight those kickbacks. The standups blocking the mode start hole are NOT safe to shoot, and can cause right drains. Because i know to make the effort to relight the kickbacks, a lot of the so called difficulty of the table goes away, though it's still pretty low scoring. I actually wouls rank the original marvel tables, from easiest to hardest.

    Spiderman (probably second only to Plants vs. Zombies, even though kickbacks are not so easy to light)
    Blade
    Iron Man
    Wolverine

    On the other hand, El Dorado has the BALL SAVER on the inlanes, and thus you can play for AGES. On the ps2 version, you can lift the upper left flipper and plunge the ball under it full strength from the plunger every time, and do the same for every auto plunged ball (such as from the ballsaver). if you make a serious effort to do it, you can keep the ballsaver going for AGES.

    Tesla is harder, although it's ball saver is easily lit as well.

    PS: M.A.R.S would be astly improved by stronger slingshots, to fling the ball at those nearly unhittable side targets.

    Leave a comment:


  • OriginalEther
    replied
    Well, they reversed the trend with the Star Wars tables. I wouldn't label any of them as easy.

    As someone pointed on another thread some time ago, the difference between a real table and Zen is that in the arcade, they are trying to make money. It doesn't do the arcade any good to have people at a table for 30 minutes, let alone a couple hours. Obviously, that's not an issue on a console. The main thing Zen needs to do is convince someone to buy the tables.

    I think it depends on the nature of the table. A table that is prone to having balls go down the outlanes probably should have easier kickbacks to make up for it. As for extra balls and ball savers, same deal. For example, it is very clear in my opinion that Empire and Boba Fett are designed around the fact that you need to get those extra balls.

    Using the Sorcerer's Lair table, while I agree it is an easier one, I think the balance is decent. Kickbacks are somewhat easy, but you will lose them with the easy to start multiballs. And they are necessary since sometimes the ball will fall from the bumpers down the left outlane for a very cheap ballout; the kickback saves you from this.

    For the ball save, I think it's main purpose is to give you a reason to shoot the Whisper hole and/or attempt Elusion combos. otherwise, those shots are too dangerous and the reward is too low to risk.

    I don't find the Gargoyle multiball high scoring enough to really spam. Sorcerer's multiball is worthwhile, but it takes a lot more effort to start. Really, the main way to score high is just spam the missions, and really only try to complete the numerous safe ones (Behind the Walls, Escape the Cellar, etc. ).


    I do like the double drain protection idea. Sucks when you lose one that way. Annoying or unfair ball outs drive me nuts.

    Infinity Gauntlet is a harder table than World War Hulk. But I like Gauntlet better because most of the ball out are fair and there's nothing real annoying about it.
    World War Hulk, on the other hand, you can lose a ball by correctly hitting the mission gate using the left flipper. The Warbound orbit can lead outs also. Annoying.

    Leave a comment:


  • zaphod77
    replied
    Sign me up for pro mode.

    I actually like mars, but i agree that plants vs zombies is not suitable for hot seat play.

    Additionally, a lot of tables have very easy to relight kickbacks and ball savers.

    Games where it's way to easy to relight one or both.

    1) Sorcerer's lair (way too easy to relight both)
    2) Mars: very easy kickbacks.
    3) any game that relights the ballsaver from the in/outlanes. I forget all that do that, but quite a few of them do. I lbeieve paranormal, street fighter tribute, and el dorado to be examples.

    And some of them hand out extra balls like candy.

    1) Spiderman. Two available every ball until you hit the cap. The webslinger award is really easy to collect once you know how to. the kickbacks are actually hard because many of the feeds skip the inlanes, which is a smart decision.
    2) plants vs zombies.

    Most real pinball games do not let you relight the ballsavers adn kickbacks so easily. for example a side bank of targets is usually what relights the kickback, and you need a random award or a multiball start to relight a ball saver.

    Here's some ideas to make the game harder but less frustration while doing so.

    1) double drain proof the multiballs. have it so if you lose your last two balls of the multiball at the same time, it will return one of them to you (but cancel the restart/last minute jackpot collect)

    2) make multiballs harder to relight after getting to them the first time. Here's an example for sorcerer's lair. Locks are way too easy to relight, which also leads to many many ball savers.

    For gargolyle multiball, have it so after the first multiball, you need an additional shot to open the gargoyle. For Sorcerer multiball, require an additional shot to the ramp each time through. This stops people from relighting the ballsaver like candy. Citadel multiball probably can stay as is, but a similar fix could be applied to it.

    Another real pinball trick that makes games a lot more fun for casual players is to light multiball for free if you have yet to get it. For sorcerer's lair, i'd do this by having it so that if you haven't gotten any multiballs, the first gargoyle lock or sorcerer vanish will start multiball.

    Leave a comment:


  • lasvegaspinballhalloffame
    replied
    If a few easier tables get more people buying Zen products, I'm all for it. When you get the zombie challenges up to a high level they DO become hard though!!

    Leave a comment:


  • Vincent
    replied
    For sure the low-G multiball in Mars is fun a couple of times but then it becomes a real pain in the ass.

    Leave a comment:


  • clydebink
    replied
    Originally posted by shogun00 View Post
    Difficulty isn't an issue with me. I'm fine with playing easy tables and hard tables, because real pinball machines are the same way. Some tables are much easier than others.

    The problem I'm having with pinball in general is the same as on fighting games, which is the flow and balance. When the balance and flow are off, it makes the game less desirable to play. I can't put my finger on it, but the Plants vs Zombies table's balance and flow felt off. Perhaps, it was because it was way too easy to start up the Mailbox Multiball mode. It made it difficult to work on the missions and disrupted the flow, since I could randomly start it up without even realizing it.
    I agree entirely. I do like how the multiball can start during a mode, but it does start way to frequently and without my intent. That's actually my problem with Mars too, I get stuck in the pyramid multiball. What creates that multi-ball limbo? Maybe if multiball can be started too soon after the last, then all my drains are happening during a multi-ball and so my game never ends.
    Now that I think of it, it's the same problem I have with Space Shuttle.
    Last edited by clydebink; 11-13-2012, 09:25 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • BarbieBobomb
    replied
    Originally posted by surf1der View Post
    Whoa Barbie, you are lucky you put that smiley face at the end of that comment. You got awfully close to calling xbox players fanboys.
    OH JEEZ. We can't have that!

    Leave a comment:


  • surf1der
    replied
    Originally posted by BarbieBobomb View Post
    Oh man--if we waited a month to release on Xbox not only would we lose a lot of sales, we'd likely lose customers. We get enough people mad about exclusives/timed exclusives, and even though we are working toward making as many tables available on as many platforms as possible, people still get mad. I know you would be okay with waiting, but that can't be said for everyone.

    We did not reset leaderboards for PvZ... we'd have an angry mob on our hands
    Whoa Barbie, you are lucky you put that smiley face at the end of that comment. You got awfully close to calling xbox players fanboys. ;-)
    Last edited by surf1der; 11-13-2012, 08:54 PM. Reason: Forgot to put in my smiley face

    Leave a comment:


  • Vincent
    replied
    Originally posted by BarbieBobomb View Post
    My point was that we try to make tables of varying difficulty. That is all.
    This is of course an incredibly good idea to make game difficulty vary, but why make it depend on the tables ? Why not allow the player to choose, for each table, between 5 difficulty levels (with separated leaderboards, of course), with specific table settings for each one ? Wouldn't that be awesome ? That way, every kind of player could enjoy every table ! I am sure this is a feature that we will see in PFX3, or isn't it ?...

    Leave a comment:


  • Alipan
    replied
    I don't think anyone can really begrudge tables being designed for new players - in hindsight how could a PvZ table be anything other than casual?

    I guess the frustration amongst experienced players is that all single table releases seem to be going that way now.

    I still think there must be a way of making a table suitable and enjoyable for players of all levels though - or am I asking too much from something that only costs £1.

    Curious to see what we get from Civil War now.....

    Leave a comment:


  • BarbieBobomb
    replied
    Originally posted by Vincent View Post
    I am not sure if you understand. My dad is a very casual player and not particularly gifted with a joypad in his hands, and however he agrees with me that this table is horribly easy. So stop saying we are amazing players, some of us are just normal players giving their point of view, and this is just what you seem to refuse to hear.

    You talk about Iron Man, do you think it's intellectually honest to take this example here ? That table is known to be a very hard table with a very low ball longevity. Come on, please don't pretend there is no compromise between Iron Man and Plants. I, and other people after me, spent quite some time on a work attempting to classify the tables according to their difficulty level, trying to be as objective as possible, patiently counting the number of people reaching 100.000, as well as the number of 500.000s, and the number of billionaires, trying to isolate such criteria as easy/average/hard scoring and long/average/short ball longevity. The thread was called "Table difficulty levels based upon scoring statistics". Of course Iron Man was among the hardest tables, but Ms Splosion Man was among the very easy ones, and PvZ would fall into this category. Did you by any chance happen to read that thread ?

    Here is the link
    https://forum.zenstudios.com/showthr...ing-statistics
    My point was that we try to make tables of varying difficulty. That is all.

    Leave a comment:


  • shogun00
    replied
    Originally posted by clydebink View Post
    That said, I am really interested in opinions about what makes a table hard and enjoyable, compared to hard and sucky, compared to easy and enjoyable, compared to easy and sucky. I have personally experienced all 4 of these combinations.
    Difficulty isn't an issue with me. I'm fine with playing easy tables and hard tables, because real pinball machines are the same way. Some tables are much easier than others.

    The problem I'm having with pinball in general is the same as on fighting games, which is the flow and balance. When the balance and flow are off, it makes the game less desirable to play. I can't put my finger on it, but the Plants vs Zombies table's balance and flow felt off. Perhaps, it was because it was way too easy to start up the Mailbox Multiball mode. It made it difficult to work on the missions and disrupted the flow, since I could randomly start it up without even realizing it.
    Last edited by shogun00; 11-13-2012, 08:17 PM. Reason: I hope that came out right.

    Leave a comment:


  • Vincent
    replied
    Originally posted by BarbieBobomb View Post
    People freaked out after Iron Man, we learned our lesson there. I know that some of you are amazing pinball players, and that's great. But the majority of people who bought the game are not. They are casual players who saw a new table based on a casual game they played (which is also incredibly easy) so they picked it up. I know the producer at PopCap and the designer here at Zen are both very proud of it (despite a few bugs that came up after launch) and are both incredibly passionate about pinball.

    I am not sure if you understand. My dad is a very casual player and not particularly gifted with a joypad in his hands, and however he agrees with me that this table is horribly easy. So stop saying we are amazing players, some of us are just normal players giving their point of view, and this is just what you seem to refuse to hear.

    You talk about Iron Man, do you think it's intellectually honest to take this example here ? That table is known to be a very hard table with a very low ball longevity. Come on, please don't pretend there is no compromise between Iron Man and Plants. I, and other people after me, spent quite some time on a work attempting to classify the tables according to their difficulty level, trying to be as objective as possible, patiently counting the number of people reaching 100.000, as well as the number of 500.000s, and the number of billionaires, trying to isolate such criteria as easy/average/hard scoring and long/average/short ball longevity. The thread was called "Table difficulty levels based upon scoring statistics". Of course Iron Man was among the hardest tables, but Ms Splosion Man was among the very easy ones, and PvZ would fall into this category. Did you by any chance happen to read that thread ?

    Here is the link
    https://forum.zenstudios.com/showthr...ing-statistics
    Last edited by Vincent; 11-13-2012, 08:13 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • clydebink
    replied
    Plants versus Zombies is a super easy table.
    If that made me angry, then I wouldn't be bragging about it.

    That said, I am really interested in opinions about what makes a table hard and enjoyable, compared to hard and sucky, compared to easy and enjoyable, compared to easy and sucky. I have personally experienced all 4 of these combinations.
    I want to like playing Plants versus Zombies, but I get bored. Same happens to me with Mars, Space Shuttle, and Monster Bash. I think it might be the lack of a dangerous shot. I don't know. On all four of those tables, I have to decide when to stop playing. I'm not saying they shouldn't exist, I just play them much less frequently. Different strokes yo.

    Leave a comment:


  • BarbieBobomb
    replied
    Originally posted by Alipan View Post
    Good thread - feel like some of the mists surrounding the zen mindset are clearing. Seems like, as I suspected, they made a conscious decision to go casual. Not the game I fell in love with but there you go...bad luck for me.

    Nothing wrong with easy tables but unfortunately that tends to go hand in hand with long games and thats when people get bored.

    This thread needs the opinion of some new / beginner players and what they think of the PvZ table.
    When we had the table set up at PAX, we had a lot of people play it who weren't too familiar with Pinball FX2/Zen Pinball but they picked it up and seemed to really like it. Even elsewhere (Facebook/Twitter) it seems like the more experienced players don't care for it much but the newer, less experienced ones like it.

    Leave a comment:

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