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2011.08.31

Plants vs. Zombies

Pvz_2

カジュアルゲームの大手である米PopCap Gamesが2009年に発表した作品です。
ジャンルとしてはタワーディフェンス系の戦略ゲームとなっていますが、敵が一直線にしか進んで来ない都合上、それほど厳密な戦略性は必要ありません。
とは云うものの、ダウンロード販売されてから2年ほど経た現在でも売れ続けている長寿作品となっています。

実際タワーディフェンスゲームの火付け役とも云える2007年発表の「Desktop Tower Defense」などを既に遊んだ事のある方からすれば、かなり物足りない内容であると云えるでしょう。

しかし、これほどまでに「Plants vs. Zombies」が支持されている理由も存在すると考えます。
PopCap Gamesはこれまでに「Bejeweled (2001)」「Zuma (2003)」「Bejeweled 2 (2004)」「Peggle (2007)」と優れたカジュアルゲームを世に送り出して来ました。コアなゲーマーからすればアウト・オブ・眼中であったこれらの作品ですが、いずれも良く出来たゲームとして一般層を中心に支持されていたのです。
特にBejeweledシリーズは5億回のダウンロード本数を売り上げているモンスタータイトルとなっています。日本ではマッチ3と呼ばれる本システムのクローン「ズーキーパー」の方が有名ですね。

このように一般ゲーマーから絶大な支持を受けているPopCap Gamesの新作として発表された「Plants vs. Zombies」。それまでタワーディフェンスのタの字さえ知らなかったカジュアル層に戦略ゲームの楽しさを提供したと見るのが自然だと考えます。

戦略性が低いと書きましたが、本作では面スタート時にタワーユニットを自分で選択する仕様が取られています。登場する敵ゾンビーを確認しながら有効なデッキを組む訳です。
ここに戦略性の殆どが集約されていて、あとはプレイすればすぐに気付くであろうセオリーに則って、生産、配置を繰り返して行きます。

面白いのは生産する為にヒマワリが出す「サン」を回収しなければならない部分で、ここにクリックゲームの忙しないアクション要素が加わっています。

ラウンド終盤になると、敵ゾンビーのラッシュが始まるのですが、こちらのユニット配置も完了していて画面内が敵味方入り交じった混沌を提供します。
ここに至ってサンの回収と敵が落とすコインの回収が重なり、戦略ゲームと云うよりもアクション要素の強い作品に変化するのです。またカジュアルゲームの特徴である「見てるだけ」の要素もなくなっていません。

このように「Plants vs. Zombies」は色々な意味で多くのユーザーを楽しませる作品に仕上がっていると思います。本編以外でも多くのミニゲームが用意されていますし、戦略ゲームとしては2周目の方が楽しめます。
ダウンロード販売サイトの「STEAM」では常に$10以下で売られていますので、興味がおありの方にはお奨めしたいと思います。これから秋の夜長にゆっくりと楽しむには最適な作品ですよ。

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