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    FAQ/Walkthrough by Saint

    Version: 1.1 | Updated: 10/15/12 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    Plants vs. Zombies DS FAQ 1.1 / 11 Oct 2012 Author: saintly@innocent.com

    This FAQ is copyright 2012, but 'Plants vs. Zombies', 'Popcap' and all other trademarkeable names & copyrights are probably trademarked by their holders.

    This FAQ is not officially endorsed or authorized by anyone.

    WANTED: Your strategies & comments

    If you're submitting strategies for beating mini-games and stages, please make sure they work on the DS. Most of the PC strategies are too fragile or require 10 seeds.

    What is Plants vs. Zombies?

    PvZ (for short) is classed as a 'Tower Defense' game. In general, these games have some sort of enemy that is trying to get from one place to another. You lose if too many of them get to the place they are heading towards. To stop them, you build 'Towers' that try to prevent them from reaching their goal. Towers might attack them, serve as a barrier, boost other towers, inflict some kind of detrimental effect on them or have other effects that keep the enemy from getting where they want to go.

    In Plants vs. Zombies, the Zombies are the enemy. They are trying to get from the right side of the screen (the street in front of your house) to the left (your house). If they get into your house, you lose and have to try again. There are different kinds of zombies with different abilities.

    Your towers are plants. Most are plays on the name of real plants, so cherries -> cherry bombs. Peas -> peashooters. You have plants to attack zombies, plants to stall the zombies, plants that make zombies less effective and other specialized types.

    For each level, you will be shown what types of zombies will be attacking you and can choose what plants you will use to mount a defense. You can't plant all the plants you want right away, you need to "buy" each plant with sun, a currency that starts at 0 each level and slowly builds up.

    How do I get a copy?

    This guide specifically deals with Plants vs. Zombies for the Nintendo DS. You can order it online from a lot of places, including amazon.com and gamestop. It is also widely available for PC, Mac, game consoles, phones (iPhone, android) and other mobile devices (iPad, iPod touch). Visit the stores for your individual device to get a copy.

    About this FAQ

    The latest version of this FAQ can be found at GameFAQs:


    If you found it somewhere else, make sure to get the latest version before sending me any questions or comments. Other sites are free to post it without asking me so long as:

    1. It's posted in it's entirety
    2. You don't charge people to see it

    New in this FAQ

    1.1 - Formatted FAQ, plant updates 1.0 - Walkthrough, differences, strategies, all modes covered

    DS Differences

    • Versus Mode available, supports DS Download Play (only 1 cart needed)
    • 4 New minigames added:
      • Heat wave
      • Bomb all together
      • Homerun Derby
      • Air raid
    • Minigames are unlocked by beating other minigames (they don't have to be bought from Crazy Dave)
    • Top Screen shows level progress and has animated zombies
    • New zombie: Trashcan Zombie appears in survival levels
      • Trashcan Zombie does not have an almanac entry. It's like a Screen Door Zombie, but moves slower. The trashcan takes more damage than the screen. It can be taken away by magnet shrooms or ignored by fumes.
    • Achievements are different (see achievements section)
    • Crazy Dave's seeds are not random in the 2nd+ adventure mode, they will be the same each time you play a particular level.
    • Crazy Dave sells unlimited marigolds per day
    • No co-op play or house upgrades (available only on PS3/Xbox)
    • No quick play (iPod/iPad/Android versions)
    • Some mini-games from other versions aren't available
      • Zombie Nimble Zombie Quick (all versions except DS/DSi-ware)
      • Buttered Popcorn (iPad version only)
      • Heavy Weapon (XBOX, PS3, PS Vita only)
      • Zombie Trap (DSi-ware only)
    • Screen is smaller and some UI elements are moved (shovel, level progress)
    • Less detailed sprites
      • Zen Garden plants do not glow when happy
      • Zombies do not collapse into ash when blown up
      • Eyes aren't visible on lily pads, pots
    • Graphics glitches: zombies may not load correctly at the start of a level.
      • Going back to the main menu fixes most glitches
    • Dancer Zombie looks like a disco dancer, not Michael Jackson (same as the GOTY PC edition)
    • Main menu is split into 2 screens
    • Minigame progress is not saved when you quit. If you exit a game you restart at the beginning next time you play it.
    • Max of 9 seed packets (10th slot for 80,000 coins is unavailable)
    • No codes to change zombie appearance (mustache, pinata, etc...)
    • Some zombies are harder: Football zombie seems to run faster and do more
    • damage, Jack-in-the-box seems to explode more often
    • Cob Cannons take longer to fire and land
    • Zen Garden plants don't give as much money (slower rate of coins)


    • What are the differences between the DS version and other versions of PvZ?

    See the DS Differences section

    • Can more than 1 person use the same cart and have separate games?

    Yes. You can have 2 separate saves with separate achievements, adventure mode progress, zen garden, etc.. Tap 'Change Save Block' to choose a different block, then go to Achievements, then Back. There seems to be a bug when changing blocks that doesn't always load the new block right away.

    • How do I delete my data and start over?

    From main menu, Change Save Block, click your block and choose Delete

    Adventure Mode Walkthrough

    You've just picked up this cart or started over with a new playthrough. The game will gradually introduce plants and features to you, usually giving you 1 new plant and 1 new type of zombie to learn per level.

    The main attraction of Plants vs. Zombies is figuring out your own strategies and ways to beat each level and threat. The walkthrough is just a guide to how I like to do things; you should feel free to experiment. Take whatever plants you want and see what goes well together!

    1-1: 1 row, new zombie: regular zombies, new plant: peashooter

    The game starts out with 1 row of grass. After a short while, zombies will come in from the right side and head toward the left. Follow the directions to collect sun. Every 100 sun, plant a peashooter as far left as possible. The zombies will slowly walk toward it while it shoots them down.

    On the far left of your lawn you'll see lawnmowers, 1 per row. These are your last line of defense. The first zombie that makes it all the way to the left will get run over by the lawn mower (it will take out any other zombies in the row). If any zombies get to the far left in the same row later, you'll lose the game (you can restart from the current level).

    Reward: New Plant - Sunflower

    Sunflowers can't attack, but they give you sun at random intervals. You'll need them since the amount of sun that falls isn't enough to build what you'll need.

    1-2: 3 rows

    More of your lawn is plantable now. You have 3 rows to defend. Plant sunflowers on the far left of your lawn in columns. You should reserve the 2 far-left columns for sunflower and plant peashooters starting from the 3rd or 4th column (I also like to have the 3rd column be sunflowers)

    You want to get 1 peashooter per row as soon as possible. Sunflowers can be planted in a zig-zag pattern. Start at the top left, then plant in the top 2nd column, then top 3rd column, then 2nd row 1st column.

    This way, 1 peashooter can protect 2-3 sunflowers.

    Reward: New Plant - Cherry Bomb

    This plant explodes immediately when placed, destroying all zombies in it's square and all touching squares.

    1-3: 3 rows, new zombie: conehead

    Zombies wearing safety cones can take three times as much damage. Plant at least 2 columns of sunflowers then as many peashooters as you can. It will take 2 peashooters to reliably kill a conehead before it gets to you. You'll notice that zombies shield other zombies behind them from peas. Use cherry bombs when desperate. If you have extra sun when the final wave comes in, drop a bomb in the middle of it to try to get the 'Demolitioner' achievement.

    Reward: Wall-nut

    This plant can't attack, but can take a lot of hits from zombies before it dies.

    1-4: 5 rows

    All 5 lawn rows are now available. Put together what you know about the plants to beat the zombies. Sunflowers should go in the left 2 or 3 columns, 2 columns of peashooters, then wallnuts to defend them.

    3 columns of sunflowers will give you quite a lot of sun at the end, so for overkill you can plant a 2nd column of wallnuts or start blowing up zombies with cherry bombs.

    Reward: Shovel

    The shovel will destroy one of your plants, leaving behind grass that can be immediately planted with something else.

    1-5: Wall-nut bowling

    This is your first mini-game. Instead of choosing seeds, you have a conveyor belt. Seeds will come in from the right and head left in the box. Drag a seed out to plant it. Once planted, it disappears from the conveyor. If you don't plant them right away, they will pile up on the left side of the conveyor. If the conveyor belt is full, no more plants will be able to come in.

    There's a red line drawn between the 3rd and 4th columns, and zombies will start appearing on the far right immediately. Nothing bad will happen if zombies cross the red line, but if they make it into your house you lose.

    The conveyor drops off wall-nuts and red wall-nuts. You can place either one in the first 3 columns (on your side of the red line). They will roll straight down their row until they hit a zombie. Red nuts will explode like a cherry bomb when they hit. Regular nuts hit the zombie once, then head diagonally up or down (it's random).

    Don't immediately use your nuts on the first zombies to appear. Let them get close to you first. You want to hit more than 1 zombie with each regular nut. Save your red nuts for emergencies.

    Reward: Potato Mine

    The potato mine takes about 15 seconds to arm, then explodes when a zombie steps on it.

    1-6: new zombie: pole-vaulter

    The potato mine seems like a weak cherry bomb, but it's much more than that. It can defend you quite well for the beginning of the level, giving you time to set up tons of sunflowers. Then you'll be able to build the rest of your defense quickly without worrying about sun.

    Here's how that works: Start out your normal sun-flower planting. Let's say you're going for 3 columns of sun. Start in the top-left corner and plant sunflowers every chance you get. When zombies start to appear, put a potatomine in the 4th column. It should have plenty of time to arm itself before the zombie gets to it. It seems like a waste to use a 1-shot plant in the beginning, but it's very cheap and doesn't hold up your sun production very long. Also, the faster you kill the zombies in the beginning, the more zombies show up. Letting them walk all the way across to the mine gives you more time.

    The pole-vaulter zombie starts out running quickly with a pole. It will leap over the first plant it sees, dropping the pole. Then it walks slowly and can't jump over anything else.

    A potato mine behind a wall-nut will catch it. You can also drop a cheap plant like a sunflower or mine in front of it as it runs. It will waste its pole and not be able to jump over your defending wall nut later.

    Reward: Snow Pea

    Snow peas cost more than peashooters, but they snare zombies that they hit. The zombie will move and attack at half speed.

    1-7: more pole-vaulters

    Pole vaulters will appear earlier and more frequently this level. Use the potato mines to build your defense. Snow peas are great, you want to have 1 per column. They can only freeze the first zombie in the row, BUT since it will run slower, other zombies will catch up and then also get frozen.

    A single snow pea can snare all the zombies in a row, though huge groups can overwhelm it. Since the zombies attack slower, this makes your wall-nuts last longer. There's no need for more than 1 snow pea per row.

    Keep dropping sunflowers in front of pole vaulters to make them waste their poles.

    Reward: Chomper

    Chompers eat the first zombie that gets within range (they can attack two squares ahead), then take about 45 seconds to reset.

    1-8: new zombie: bucket head, choose your plants

    With the addition of Chomper, you now have 7 seeds available. However, you are limited to using 6 per level. You will not be able to use one of your plants this level. I would leave behind either the chomper or cherry bomb.

    Also not to be overlooked: you can now choose the *order* of your plants. The Pea-shooter doesn't have to be on the far left, for example. This lets you place them closer to where they'll go. If you pick Sunflower first, you'll be able to drag them straight down to their columns. If you pick Wallnut last, that's closer to where you'll put them too.

    Pole-vaulters are gone from this level, but there's a new zombie: bucket head. Bucket zombies can take more than 6 times the damage of a regular zombie. Chompers can eat them in one gulp, but it is difficult to time this. Potato mines & cherry bombs will also kill them. If you use chompers, plant them behind a wall-nut and have a snow pea and 1-2 pea shooters behind them (dig up your 3rd column of sunflowers and replace it with pea shooters). The chomper will eat the first zombie that gets close to it and then spend a long time resetting.

    Reward: Repeater

    Repeaters fire 2 peas at once.

    1-9: buckets & poles

    I'd leave behind the regular pea shooter and cherry bombs. Both pole- vaulters and bucket head zombies will be on this level.

    Set up 3 columns of sunflowers, using potato mines as long as possible. 1 column of snow peas, followed by 1 column of repeaters will take out nearly anything. Chompers, Wallnuts and a second column of repeaters (dig up the 3rd column of sunflowers when you've planted everything else) should be enough overkill for this level.

    Reward: Note from the zombies

    1-10: Conveyor

    All your plants except sunflowers will come down the conveyor belt. All the zombies you've seen will appear on the right. Consider this like a normal level, except you don't have to worry about sun. Save your cherry bombs for emergencies.

    With a little luck, you can get the 'Demolitioner' achievement here by blowing up a cherry bomb in one of the waves.

    Reward: Puff shroom

    A free plant that can also be replanted quickly. Shoots up to 3 squares in front of it.

    Map 2: Night

    Sun no longer falls from the sky at night. You may think that it wasn't very much in the first place so it's not much of a difference, but you would probably be surprised at how much of a difference it makes. Expensive plants are pretty much ruled out on night levels.

    You'll also see gravestones on the ground. Nothing can be planted on a grave. During the Final Wave, zombies will pop out of graves in addition to the ones that appear on the right.

    2-1: Nighttime

    Sun power is a little harder to come by at night. Sun no longer falls from the sky. Fortunately you have Puff Shrooms. These plants are like mini pea- shooters. They are free to place, shoot zombies up to 3 columns ahead of them and reload quickly. They can defend you instead of potato mines. You also don't need cherry bombs and pea shooters.

    Plant a puff shroom every time they come up. Start putting them 4 columns from the right, then in the middle column. Once you have those, replace ones that get eaten and fill up the whole right side of the screen with them, even to the far right column. Let zombies waste their time eating their way through the free shrooms while being shot at.

    Also new; Zombies will occasionally drop coins. You can now collect money to buy helpful things from Crazy Dave. Dropped coins don't automatically add to your total; you need to click on them before they disappear.

    You will also get 50 coins at the end of the level for each lawn mower you had left.

    Additionally, one zombie this level will drop a present. This has the 'Vs. Mode' game in it. Once you get it you can play Plants vs Zombies against other people with a Nintendo DS/DSi.

    There is also a new zombie this level: Newspaper zombie. This zombie is walking slow, carrying a newspaper. The paper can take a few hits before it is destroyed, giving the zombie about 1 1/2 as much health as a regular zombie. When the paper is destroyed, he growls at you and charges twice as fast. The paper also protects him from being slowed by snow peas.

    Reward: Sun Shroom

    The Sun shroom gives 15 sun at first, then 25 sun after about 2 minutes and 15 seconds.

    2-2: Conehead, Buckethead zombies are back

    Same as before, but now you know what to expect. Don't bring sunflowers to night levels anymore, use the new Sun Shroom. They're cheaper to plant than sunflowers, though they don't give as much sun at first. If you try to stick with sunflowers you'll find that you won't be able to place very many before the zombies show up. I'm able to have about 3 times as many sun shrooms up as sunflowers when I try it. The first sunflower takes all your sun, and you have to wait for it to give sun twice before you can plant the next one.

    It takes over two minutes (2:15) before a sun shroom gives you as much sun as a sunflower, so you'll have to get used to using cheaper plants. You won't have the sun power to build your full snow pea + repeater defense except on long levels. I'd use mostly puff shrooms on this level and try to set up a column of snow peas.

    Reward: Fume Shroom

    A cheap mushroom that fires ahead 4 squares. It hits all zombies in those squares and bypasses shields.

    2-3: new zombie: screen door zombie

    Leave the repeater behind this time in favor of the new Fume Shroom. It's cheap so you'll actually be able to place it AND it has a feature that helps with the new zombie.

    A Screen Door zombie has as much health as a bucket head zombie. The screen also protects it from the slowing effect of snow peas. It's weakness is the new plant you just got: Fume Shroom. The fumes it shoots go right through the screen (and even hit zombies behind the screen door zombie). Fumes will kill the zombie as if it only had the health of a regular zombie. Fumes also go through the newspaper zombies defense.

    The Fume Shroom is cheaper than the peashooter at only 75 sun, so definitely bring it along.

    Reward: Grave Buster

    Grave Buster destroys a grave stone, letting you plant on it's square. Single-use plant.

    2-4: upgrade seed tray, screen doors & poles

    You hopefully have the 750 coins that Crazy Dave wants for upgrading the number of seeds you can bring. You DEFINITELY want this, especially since there's nothing else to spend coins on. In my DS game, he gave me the upgrade and didn't end up taking any coins. This might be a glitch, so your mileage may vary. If you didn't have enough coins here, then get it as soon as you do. You'll soon have a lot of different seeds and being able to bring a good variety is essential.

    Screen Door zombies are back, and so are pole-vault zombies. This time, they'll probably waste their pole on a puff shroom.

    Bring the Grave Buster along. After you've built a good defense of puff and fume shrooms, drop grave busters on the graves. They'll eat it and turn it into a coin. Grave Busters are still plants and can be eaten by zombies (wasting 75 sun), so don't put them down if a zombie is heading toward them.

    So for what I'd bring to this level: All 4 mushrooms, Wallnuts, Snow Peas, Chomper

    If you have the sun power at the end of the stage, don't pick up the reward just yet. Use Grave busters on any remaining graves and collect their coins before you move on. Hey... free coins!

    Reward: Almanac

    The Almanac has full descriptions of your plants and any zombies you have encountered.

    2-5: Whack-a-zombie

    Yes, it's sort of like whack-a-mole. Zombies will pop out of those graves and you tap them to kill them. Some zombies will drop sun that can be picked up. Use the sun to drop grave busters on the graves for extra coins. Don't spend it on any other plants.

    As before, if you have extra sun at the end of the level, use it to drop grave busters on graves for extra coins.

    Reward: Hypno Shroom

    A 1-shot mushroom that makes a zombie fight for you.

    2-6: new zombie: football zombie

    The new zombie is the toughest yet: Football Zombie. It's wearing a helmet and shoulder pads and can take 8 times as much damage as a regular zombie. In addition, it also runs twice as fast and attacks twice as fast as a regular zombie.

    Again, you have been given the solution to this problem: Hypno Shroom. The first zombie to touch it will be hypnotized and will run back toward the right side of the screen. If it encounters any other zombies, it will fight them. Your pea shooters/fumes ignore a hypnotized zombie to hit the ones past it.

    You can wait till you see a football zombie coming, then drop a hypno shroom when he'll be the first to touch it. Or you can plant hypnos in a column and have them be another layer of defense like wallnuts.

    Reward: Scaredy Shroom

    Cheap version of the peashooter, but it hides when a zombie gets within 1 square of it (including ones in the row above and below)

    2-7: Lots of graves, footballs and screens

    This is just more of the same things you've been dealing with. There are a lot of graves this time. I'd bring all your mushrooms (including the new scaredy shroom) and cherry bombs to deal with emergencies.

    The scaredy shroom will hide underground and stop firing if a zombie gets within one square of it. Make sure that there's a wallnut or some other plants in front of it to prevent that.

    I would start out with 3 columns of sun shrooms and replace the 3rd column with scaredy shrooms (with the 4th-6th columns having other mushrooms).

    Reward: Ice Shroom

    Freezes all zombies in place for 5 seconds, then slows them after that. Single-use mushroom.

    2-8: new zombie: dancer zombie

    The Ice Shroom is an interesting "panic buttom" alternative to your cherry bomb. When you place it, it explodes, freezing all zombies on the screen. They will be frozen in place for about 5 seconds, then snared after that (as if they were hit by a snow pea). The snare wears off a few seconds after that. The Ice Shroom works from anywhere on the screen.

    You have 5 seconds to let your existing defense kill the threat, or to hope that another plant you need reloads so you can place it, or to get more sun, etc.. New zombies that enter the screen during this time are not frozen.

    The new zombie this level is the Dancer zombie. It's a tall disco dancer with an afro that walks in and sometimes stops to dance. The threat here is that it keeps summoning 4 backup dancers; one each in the rows above and below the dancer, 1 in front and 1 behind it. If you kill a backup dancer but not the dancer itself, it can keep re-summoning the backup.

    Ice Shrooms will freeze the dancers in place to give you time to kill the protecting backup and the dancer. A hypno shroom will turn the dancer against the other zombies (any backup it summons will also fight for you). A cherry bomb will take it out and all the backup. Whatever technique works best for you.

    I would personally bring the wallnut to this level and just try to kill the zombies with lots of shooters.

    Reward: Doom Shroom

    Destroys all zombies within about 7 squares, leaves a crater that can't have anything planted on it.

    2-9: disco & screens

    The disco zombie is back, and so are screen door zombies. You could bring along the new Doom Shroom, but I wouldn't use it this level. It's perhaps the ultimate panic button. Every zombie within about 7 squares of it will be destroyed. The downside is that it destroys the square it was placed on, and nothing can be replanted there till it heals. It takes about 3 minutes to heal, so for most adventure mode levels that square is going to be unavailable for the rest of the level.

    Reward: Note from the zombies

    2-10: Conveyor: all mushrooms

    If you wanted to try out the Doom Shroom, here's your chance. It will occasionally show up on the conveyor and you can have fun nuking the zombies.

    Reward: Lily Pad

    The Lily Pad allows you to plant in a water square

    Map 3: Pool

    Ok! The Sun is out again! No more gravestones either. You're actually in a whole new setting; your backyard. There are more rows now: 6 in total. The middle two rows are your pool. Most of your plants can't be planted directly in the pool. The new plant you just got (Lily Pad) fixes that problem. Place a lily pad on a pool square, then put your regular plant on top of it. The lily pad still counts as a plant: zombies will have to eat both the regular plant and the lily pad to get past that square.

    Zombies can come at you in the water, so you must still protect these rows with some plants that can kill them. You still have lawnmowers as a last line of defense for your pool squares, BUT they will only be able to kill zombies right next to the left edge of the pool when they activate. Other zombies in the same pool row will still keep coming.

    During the final wave, zombies will rise out of your pool as if the 4 columns on the right were grave stones. You can't prevent this, but you can be prepared for it with wallnuts in the middle column of the pool.

    The potato mine can't go in the water, even on top of a lily pad. You can dig up a plant on a lily pad without destroying the pad- watch what is highlighted and make sure to target the plant specifically.

    The other downside of daytime is that all your mushrooms don't work anymore. They are greyed out on the menu, and if you bring them anyway they won't work. Ice/Doom shrooms won't explode, Fume shrooms won't shoot, hypnos won't hypnotize, none of it works. Load up your regular daytime defense team: sunflowers, snow peas, repeaters, wallnuts.

    Of all your nighttime plants, you could bring along the puff shroom to delay zombies. It won't shoot, but it will still stall the zombies while other stuff kills them. I would personally not bother. Plant sunflowers in 3 columns on land first while defending yourself with potato mines. Zombies don't tend to show up in the water right away, so you can put some wallnuts in there to stall them till you can put in the shooters. You probably don't need to plant sunflowers on lily pads in the pool.

    3-1: The Pool

    Although there are two pool levels, there are still 4 rows of land. I would keep my sunflowers on land and only put offense plants in the water. If you are using 3 columns of sunflowers, this should be more than enough.

    You'll need to put some shooters in the pool to cover those rows.

    I'd bring these: lily pad, sunflower, potato mine, snow pea, repeater, wallnut, bomb

    Reward: Squash

    Squash destroys the first zombie to get within about 1 square of itself and all other zombies in that square.

    3-2: minigames

    Squash can replace your potato mine if you like. It costs more, but it will kill the first zombie to get near it. It can squash something to its left (if you plant it to the right of a zombie), on it's square, or about 1.5 columns to the right (so you can plant it behind a wallnut and it will squash the first zombie to attack the wallnut). Unlike the potato mine, you can also place it on a lily pad to squash zombies in the water.

    Like the potato mine, the squash will sit there and wait for a zombie to get close. It is used up when it activates. If there happen to be several zombies in the same square they will all get squashed. The best way to make this happen is to let zombies pile up on a wallnut, then plant a squash next to the wallnut.

    One zombie will drop a present. When you pick it up, the mini-games menu will be unlocked.

    Reward: 3-peater

    This peashooter also fires peas in the rows above it and below it.

    Interlude: Mini games

    If you're close to 5000 coins (at this point, I was at 4700), I would go quit adventure mode and play the 3 mini-games. From the main menu, go to More, then Mini-Games. There are 3 mini-games available:

    Zombotany: Zombies come in wearing peashooter/wallnut heads. They can shoot back at your plants. Plant wallnuts before you put sunflowers in a row so the sunflowers will be protected from shots.

    Wall-nut Bowling: Basically the same as adventure stage 1-5

    Slots: A slot machine randomly gives you plants, try to collect 2000 sun.

    Beat each game once and you should have 5000 coins when you come back to adventure mode. Slots can sometimes give you 1000 coins, but I think that wall-nut bowling is more fun to replay.

    3-3: upgrade to 8 slots, new zombie: snorkel zombie

    If you got all 5000 coins then you should be able to upgrade to 8 slots here. Again, I got the glitch (?) where Crazy Dave didn't actually take my money. If you don't have 5000 coins yet, I'm assuming you'll have it in the next few levels. Upgrade when you can and I won't assume you have 8 slots yet.

    The 3-peater is a cool plant. It costs 325, which is 25 more sun than buying 3 peashooters, but it fires a pea down the rows above and below it. You can plant it on land directly above or below the pool and it will shoot at zombies in the pool row it covers.

    The new zombie is a tricky one: snorkel zombie. This one will stay under the water and surface only to attack your plants. Your peashooters (including the new 3-peater) won't be able to hit it when it's submerged. A good way to defend this is to plant a wallnut on top of a lily pad. The zombie will be forced to surface to attack the wallnut and your peashooters can hit it.

    Make sure to plant some wallnuts at the halfway point in your pool and cover them with a peashooter of some sort. Squash will still kill these zombies.

    Reward: Tangle Kelp

    Tangle Kelp is cheap and kills the first zombie to get within 1 square. It kills only 1 zombie, even if others were in that square.

    3-4: snorkel, newspaper, bucket, pole zombies

    You can use the potato mine + tangle kelp together to defend yourself until you have all your sunflowers planted. Tangle kelp is ready to kill right away, BUT it recharges very slowly and can only kill 1 zombie.

    It doesn't need a lily pad, and it can kill a snorkel zombie that hasn't surfaced.

    Reward: Crazy Dave's car keys!

    Crazy Dave can finally get into his car.

    Interlude: Crazy Dave's shop

    You found Crazy Dave's keys! It turns out he has a store in the trunk of his car and he'll sell you things for coins now. Let's have a look:

    Twiddydinkies for sale
    • 9 slots: 20,000 coins

    I'd recommend saving up your coins to buy this as soon as you can.

    • pool cleaner: 1,000 coins

    Upgrades the lawn mowers defending your pool. If a zombie makes it into past your pool defenses once, the pool cleaner will activate and take out all zombies in that row (like the lawnmowers do for grass). I'd save my money for the 9-slot upgrade, but this isn't too expensive. You could play some mini-games to make up the money.

    • rake: 200 coins

    I would buy this every time you can. It will kill the first zombie of every level for 3 levels. This saves you from having to plant a potato mine or squash when you are just starting up your sun production. It's cheap and it makes your levels easier.

    • upgrade plant: Gatling Pea, 5,000 coins

    This adds a plant to your seed collection that you can bring to all future levels/minigames.

    You have to first plant a repeater (200 sun) THEN plant this gatling pea on top of it (another 250 sun). This will double the shots of the repeater and make it fire 4 peas at a time. It sounds powerful, but it uses 2 slots in your tray and 450 sun each time to make it work.

    There are good strategies built around this plant, but I would not buy it during your first playthrough.

    • upgrade plant: Twin Sunflower, 5,000 coins

    Like the Gatling Pea, but this one upgrades a sunflower. The upgrade will cost 150 sun. The twin sunflower gives twice as much sun each time. This allows you to have more columns dedicated to offense plants, but I still wouldn't buy this during the first playthrough.

    You can return to Crazy Dave's shop from the Main Menu. Select More, then click the car keys (they say "shop" on them). Each level in adventure mode lets you visit the shop at the beginning. I usually check the shop to make sure I'll have the Rake. If you have it, it will say "sold out" on it. If you can buy it, then you should.

    3-5: Heat Wave

    This game is exclusive to the DS and uses the DS microphone. You have four peashooters, 2 wallnuts and 4 lily pads. You can move them to other squares with your stylus. I like to put all 4 peashooters in the same row as a zombie to kill it faster, then move to the next row, but you can try whatever you like.

    When the red bar fills up at the top, it will say 'Shout!'. You can yell something at the microphone, or you can just blow on it. Either works and your plants will be recharged. Some will turn yellow and fire very fast.

    If any plant gets eaten, one of the next zombies you kill will drop a seed packet to replace it.

    Reward: Jalapeno

    A single-use bomb that destroys all zombies in a row.

    3-6: new zombie: zomboni

    The new zombie is even nastier than the football zombie. The Zomboni is a zombie that comes in driving a Zamboni (the big machine that resurfaces the ice in ice-skating/ice-hockey rinks). It will slowly go from right to left, crushing all plants in its way. Even wallnuts will be instantly crushed. Worse, it leaves a trail of ice behind it that cannot be planted on. It has a little less health than a buckethead zombie.

    In case you don't hate Zomboni enough already, the Zombie Bobsled Team can use the ice trail created by the Zamboni to ride into a row. This will be four zombies riding a vehicle. They are regular zombies, but their bobsled can absorb a little damage before it gets to the end of the ice trail. Their bobsled will carry them to the end of the ice trail, then all 4 zombies will get out. While still in their bobsled, Chomper can eat all of them.

    The zamboni is also immune to snow peas/slowing effects.

    Let's talk defenses: Squash, Potato Mines, Chompers, Cherry Bombs and Jalapenos will kill it instantly. Additionally, the Jalapeno will also clear the ice trail left behind (it will go away on it's own in about 30 seconds) and prevent Zombie Bobsled Team from appearing. You can also blow up a zamboni with sheer damage, but it's almost as tough as a buckethead and can't be stalled by wallnuts.

    You'll hear a zomboni right before it enters the level; it makes a noise of an engine starting up.

    For this level, I'd bring these: Sunflower, Lilypad, Snow Pea, Repeater, Wallnut, Potato Mine, Tanglekelp and the new Jalapeno

    Save the Jalapenos and use it on the Zamboni. Since this is the level they are introduced, there won't be very many of them.

    Reward: Spikeweed

    Damages zombies that walk on it. Blows up Zambonis, but is destroyed in the process.

    3-7: zomboni & snorkels

    There will be more zombonis this time. Fortunately, spikeweed is even better at destroying them. It's fairly cheap and it can't be eaten by zombies. Plant it in the far right column so zombies have to walk over it. Two of them can kill a regular zombie that walks over them. Another good place to put them is right in front of wallnuts. Then zombies will get hurt repeatedly while attacking the nuts.

    Try to plant it in the 4 columns on the right. It will also destroy a zomboni immediately, but that also destroys the spikeweed (a fair trade, and spikeweed reloads quickly). Spikeweed does not normally take damage from zombies.

    Reward: Torchwood

    Peas that pass over it become fireballs. Fireballs cancel the snare from snow peas, but they do double damage to the zombie they hit, plus extra damage (equivalent to a single pea hit) to all zombies nearby.

    3-8: new zombie: dolphin rider

    Torchwood cancels out your snow peas, so you shouldn't use both. The snare effect from snow peas is valuable, but loses effectiveness when there are lots of zombies. Then the Torchwood really starts to shine. It doubles the damage from peas passing over it (so 1 repeater + torchwood is now like having 2 repeaters, and 2 repeaters + torchwood is like 4 repeaters). A flaming pea also hurts nearby zombies, so it cures the weakness of a pea shooter only being able to hurt 1 thing at a time.

    I didn't use them much in the first playthrough, but if you find yourself having trouble with too many zombies on a level you can consider this strategy. For now, I would stick with snow peas.

    Switch out your jalapeno for tanglekelp. The dolphin rider is a pole vaulter for the pool. It's VERY fast when it has its dolphin, faster than a football zombie. It jumps over the first water plant it comes to (tanglekelp will still kill it) and then becomes as slow as a regular zombie. Don't forget that the lily pad counts as a plant, if you put one in the way of a dolphin rider it will waste its dolphin on it.

    Dolphin riders make a noise before entering that sounds like a dolphin squeaking.

    You can put tanglekelp behind a wallnut in the water to catch these guys. Chompers are also good. If you don't want your chompers to be napping when dolphin riders show up, put them 2 squares behind the wallnut.

    Reward: Tallnut

    This wallnut can't be jumped over, and it also can take more damage.

    3-9: zomboni, poles & dolphins

    Chompers deal with all of these threats. I'd bring this setup: Sunflower, Lily, Spikeweed, Squash, Tallnut, Snow Pea, Repeater, Chomper

    Manage the zombonis with spikeweed in the far right column and squash if another zomboni comes in the same row while spikeweed is reloading. The Tallnuts won't let pole-vaulters and dolphins jump over them.

    Reward: Note from the zombies

    3-10: Conveyor: 3-peaters & torchwood

    This level is a great lesson in the uses of torchwood & 3-peaters. Those are your main offense plants, though you'll also get spikeweed and some instant-kill plants like squash & jalapeno. Tallnuts are also available.

    Make about 4 columns of 3-peaters, avoiding the very top and very bottom rows (where 1 of the shots will be wasted). Plant torchwood in the 5th column. I would start out with 4 columns of 3-peaters on land first, with my first torchwoods in the water (to ensure that water zombies die).

    Reward: Sea-shroom

    A free water plant that can fire 3 squares ahead.

    Map 4: Fog

    Good news: Fog. A thick cloud has moved in over the right side so you can't see anything in the 2 right columns. The 3rd and 4th columns from the right are cloudy and difficult to see.

    It's also night-time again, so it's back to your mushrooms.

    The fog will challenge your memory. Fill up the foggy part with puff shrooms and try to remember where they are. Scaredy shrooms or other attackers with long ranges can be placed outside the fog and will tell you when zombies enter that row. Listen to the sound effects to hear if there are buckethead zombies.

    You'll also notice that if you drag a plant over a foggy spot, it will stay lit up under your stylus if it CANNOT be planted there, and will disappear if there isn't already a plant there. You can use this trick to see which of your fog-covered plants are eaten. If you want to replace something (like putting spikeweed down instead of a puff shroom) you can still dig up stuff in the fog, even if you can't see it.

    4-1: Fog, new zombie: jack-in-the-box

    "Great!" you're thinking. A pool version of the puff shroom! Well, not quite. It is basically the same, but it has a very slow recharge time. You can't replace these quite as easily, though if you bring it along (and I still think you should) you should plant them every time they come up, even if it means planting them right up to the right edge.

    Your new zombie is a suicide bomber. It carries a jack-in-the-box music box and will randomly decide to explode somewhere in the 4-5 columns on the right. The explosion destroys all plants in nearby squares without hurting any zombies (like an evil version of the cherry bomb). The fog can also hide their entrance. Fortunately, they play a warning tune ("Pop goes the weasel") right before they enter.

    Puff shrooms on lily pads are almost as good as sea shrooms. You can dig up the puff shrooms when you want to replace them with something else.

    Reward: Plantern

    This plant clears the fog about 3 squares on either side of it, and 1 row above and below it.

    4-2: Jack & Football

    You can now dispel the fog if you want, but there's a few problems. First, the plantern must be planted in the middle of the fog to be effective. Second, you have to bring the plantern along (sacrificing a plant that can shoot or defend). Third, the plantern is just as fragile as your other plants, so it's likely to get eaten quickly.

    You could try to protect it with a wallnut, but usually I prefer to just leave planterns behind and suffer with the fog. Later on you'll be able to protect it, but it's tough to use right now.

    Reward: Cactus

    This plant is basically a pea-shooter, but it will also stretch to pop balloons on flying zombies.

    4-3: new zombie: balloon zombie

    You have been given another special-purpose plant. The Cactus is slightly more expensive than a regular pea shooter but does the same damage. It has one special trick: when a balloon zombie flies in on the same row as a cactus, it will stretch up to pop the balloon. This will drop the balloon zombie to the ground. If the balloon zombie falls in the water, it will just die.

    By coincidence, this level introduces a new zombie: the Balloon Zombie. This one will float in on a balloon. It can appear in any row and will float over all your other plants, including tallnut. It will drop down at the far left (right in front of your lawn mowers) and go into your house. Your lawn mower will stop it once.

    This is really bad, so bring along the new cactus plant and make sure to have 1 per row. You don't need more than 1. A cactus will immediately stretch to take out a balloon, so if you had more than 1 per row you'd have them all stop firing down the row to pop 1 balloon. In case you were wondering, cactus shots do not get the benefit of torchwood.

    Like most nasty zombies, there is a warning sound before balloon zombies appear. It sounds like a balloon being inflated.

    This is a short level to teach you how seriously to take balloon zombies.

    Also, if you don't take along any planterns or torchwood, you can get the achievement 'Nebulaphile' for not disturbing any fog. The fog isn't any worse on this level than on 4-1 and 4-2, so who knows why those won't give you any credit.

    Reward: Blover

    A 1-shot plant that instantly blows away fog for about 15 seconds. It also kills all balloon zombies in the air. Reloads quickly.

    4-4: balloons and dolphins

    More flags and the dolphins are back. I prefer using Blover to having a column of cactus. You drop it and it instantly kills all balloon zombies by blowing them off the screen. As a bonus, it also takes out all the fog for at least 15 seconds. All you need is 1 square anywhere on the map to put down the blover.

    Reward: Taco

    Crazy Dave loves Tacos

    Interlude: Crazy Dave's new shop items

    Crazy Dave takes that taco off your hands and has some new items in his shop. He's really trying to tempt you now:

    New Twiddydinkies
    • upgrade plant: Gloom Shroom, 7,500 coins

    Converts a fume shroom into a plant that hits all zombies in the 8 squares around it about 4 times a second. This plant is very important in some of the tougher minigames after beating adventure mode. However, you need a plant you don't have yet (garlic) to make those strategies work. Save your money for the 9-slot upgrade.

    • upgrade plant: Cattail, 10,000 coins

    I had about 10,000 coins when I got here and the cattail was tempting. It will turn a lily pad into a little machine gun of spiky death. It fires as fast as a repeater, with homing shots that go for the nearest zombie in any row. It also homes in on and pops balloons. As powerful as this sounds, you are almost done with water levels and this upgrade can wait till after adventure mode is complete.

    4-5: Vasebreaker

    Click the vases. They'll either have a plant inside that you can put on the field (except on top of an unbroken vase) or they'll have a zombie that walks toward the left. Green vases always have plants inside.

    If you don't plant a seed it will disappear. One trick works pretty well with squash: plant it on the left of the vases. Then open the vase on the far right of the squash. If it has a zombie, wait till the zombie has walked up to the middle of the next vase and open that. If it has another zombie in it, now they'll be stacked up and both will get killed by the squash.

    Reward: Split Pea

    This peashooter will also fire 2 shots backwards (toward the left).

    4-6: new zombie: miner

    Make sure to buy the rake at the beginning of this level. The new zombie is meant to attack your sun-producers. First, it tunnels underground toward the left. Then it pops out of the ground just in front of your lawn mower and heads right-- back toward where the zombies come in. So the good part is that it can't bypass your plants and go right for your house like a balloon zombie. The bad part is that most of your plants can't fire backwards so it can eat a whole row of your plants.

    On to the defenses: first, the lowly Potato Mine. It's not listed in the miner zombie's weaknesses, but it can't tunnel through a potato mine. It will just blow up when it gets to it, so this is the cheapest way to defend against the miner. Second, squash. Squash can go 1 square backwards, but this doesn't help when the miner is underground. If you are caught unprepared and the miner starts eating plants, the squash can get it. Third, the new plant you just got- Split Pea. It has a repeater stuck to the back of it, so it can fire at the miner after it surfaces. However, the miner will probably be able to eat at least 1 plant before it dies.

    The upgrade plant: cattail attacks the closest zombie, so it can deal with the miner too. A gloom shroom in the 2nd column can also usually kill a miner before it does anything. However, I strongly recommend not buying either of these just yet.

    I'd bring these: Sun shroom, puff, sea, lily, snow pea, split pea, potato mine, tangle kelp (if you have the cattail, it can do the job of/replace the split pea, potato mine & tangle kelp)

    A zombie this level will also drop a present: Puzzle mode. You can play Vasebreaker and a new game "I, Zombie" where you get to be the zombies. The first 3 levels of each game are available, after you beat adventure mode there will be another 6.

    The fog is worse on this level, with 3 columns completely hidden.

    Reward: Star fruit

    The star shoots 5 shots in 5 different directions, but not straight ahead.

    4-7: miner, jack

    It fires diagonally forward/up, forward/down, straight backward, and straight up and down. The DS version of the star seems to miss a lot. It looks like it aims for the zombie bodies, but has to hit their feet to connect. I never use them, but you are free to experiment.

    Fog is as bad as 4-6.

    The miner & jack-in-the-box zombies are back. I used these: Sun, puff, sea, lily, snow, tangle, repeater, squash

    You can leave the 1st column empty and drop squash in it when you want to kill a miner.

    Reward: Pumpkin

    Pumpkin goes on top of another plant to add a defensive shell.

    4-8: new zombie: pogo zombie

    Pumpkins are great. They add the toughness of a wallnut to any plant. A zombie has to eat the pumpkin before they can get to the plant inside it. This allows you to build a more compact defense. You can use them to protect planterns that are out in the fog.

    That's great, but for Pogo Zombies you need to bring along the Tallnut. Pogo Zombies hop down the row, bouncing over all your plants. They move quickly, just like pole-vault zombies. Tall-nuts stop them in their tracks and make them drop their pogo. Squashes will also take them out. They bounce right over potato mines though.

    Bring Tall-nuts and Squash to deal with the pogos. I'd also bring fume shrooms and spikes.

    Reward: Magnet shroom

    This plant takes metal objects away from the zombies. It takes about 5 seconds to recharge after it steals something. It can reach about 3 squares away.

    4-9: pogos & balloons

    The magnet can't attack anything, but it is a very effective plant to have on your team. It steals metallic objects away from zombies. Buckethead, football and screen door zombies are reduced to weakling regular zombies without their helmets and shields, pogo zombies lose their pogos and jack in the box zombies lose their ability to explode. Very nice. It does have a short recharge time after stealing something, during which it can't steal anything else. It steals the first metal thing that gets close to it.

    You usually want at least 3 magnets, if not a whole column of them. One slightly annoying thing is that it steals the pick from a miner zombie. This will stop the miner from tunnelling, but now it will pop up wherever it was when the magnet got it and start heading for your house. This can make it pop up in the middle of your protected columns.

    There's still 3 squares of solid fog. This level is tough, I'd bring this: sun, puff, sea, lily, magnet, pumpkin, squash, cactus

    I'd pass on the blover because I want more offense to kill pogos. You'll see I didn't bring Tallnuts, I'm relying on my magnets to disable the pogos and building 1 column of cactus to deal with balloons. The rest of the land space is puff shrooms. The magnets can go on the front line or just behind it with pumpkins protecting the front row.

    Reward: Note from the zombies

    4-10: Conveyor: lightning

    The whole screen is dark and only lit up for a second or two when the lightning strikes. You'll have to remember where all your plants are.

    You'll get Star, Split Pea, Magnet, Cactus, Sea Shroom, Blover, Lily and Pumpkin on the conveyor. Unfortunately, the Star is your main defense here.

    Reward: Cabbage-pult

    This plant lobs cabbages up in an arc instead of firing in a straight line.

    Map 5: Roof

    The roof is another new environment with its own challenges. First, half of the roof is slanted. The first five columns are all at different heights, and the last 4 columns (closest to the zombies) are flat. The main effect of this is that your pea-shooters will only work on the flat part and the two highest slanted columns. If you place them in the first three columns, their peas will just hit the roof. Cactus plants will not bother to stretch the little bit higher they need to hit zombies.

    The slant is also a little disorienting for new players. Make sure you put your squash and defense plants in the right row and not straight across from the zombie.

    You don't have lawn mowers on the roof. You can eventually buy roof cleaners (the equivalent) but for this level you don't have a last-line-of- defense.

    Lastly, just like the pool, you can't plant anything directly on the roof. You first have to put down a flower pot (you don't have that yet). Spikeweed can't be planted in flower pots either, but potato mines can. You can't plant the lily, tanglekelp or sea shroom in flowerpots.

    In all roof levels, zombies will be dropped onto the map during the final wave. They can be dropped anywhere on the flat part of the roof.

    5-1: The Roof, new zombie: bungee zombie

    There is a new zombie: Bungee Zombie. This one can't invade your house, but does something else annoying. They will drop a target onto one of your plants. A few seconds later they will drop in and grab it. A few seconds after that they'll launch away and steal your plant. You can kill them during the time they are down, but they have a lot of health. You basically need some instant-kill plant if you want to kill them. For the most part, I don't worry about them. Just replace the plants they steal.

    Bungees choose targets at random. If there's a plant in the pot, they will take only the plant. They will take a pumpkin only if there's no plant inside it. If there's nothing but a pot, they will take the pot.

    Your new plant from 4-10 is the Cabbage-pult. This plant costs the same as a peashooter and does the same amount of damage (technically it fires about half as fast, but does twice as much damage per hit). It can be placed in any column and still hit the zombies. It also shoots over the screens of screen door zombies and can hit the snorkel zombies underwater. It does not get any benefit from torchwood though.

    As good as it is for the roof, I would NOT bring the cabbage-pult for this level. You can get an achievement "Unsiege mentality" for beating a roof level without using catapults. For this level, snow peas and repeaters can easily beat all the zombies without needing a 3rd row of attackers. Potato mines work great in the beginning.

    You start with 5 columns of pots on this level. If a zombie destroys a pot then you have no way to replace it and must make do with a smaller space for planting.

    Reward: Pot

    The pot allows plants to be placed on the roof. The pot is also a plant and zombies must eat it to get past after eating the plant placed in it.

    Interlude: Crazy Dave has more stuff

    There's a few new items, but only the Roof Cleaner will help you during the remaining adventure levels.

    New Twiddydinkies
    • Roof Cleaner: 3,000 coins

    It sounds more expensive than it is. Since you don't have lawn mowers on the roof, you aren't getting $250 each level for having them all left.

    If you buy the roof cleaners now, they'll have paid you back $2000 by level 5-10 and eventually pay for themselves. Some of the hardest levels are coming up (5-9 and 5-10). If you don't buy them now, you'll be able to get the 9-slot upgrade a little earlier. I would suggest buying them now and playing mini-games to make up the difference.

    • upgrade plant: Spikerock, 7,500 coins

    This bad boy upgrades a spikeweed and does double damage to zombies passing over it. It can also take out 9 Zombonis before being destroyed.

    You're unable to plant spikeweed on the roof, so I'd definitely wait till after you beat adventure mode to buy it.

    • upgrade plant: Gold Magnet, 3,000 coins

    This changes a magnet-shroom so it stops disarming zombies and instead picks up coins for you. Useless for the rest of adventure mode.