FAQ/Strategy Guide/Walkthrough iPhone

Welcome to my FAQ.   My objective is to help you by supplying a lot of 
strategies based on my experience playing through the entire game, as
well as things I have picked up from watching various videos and reading
other sites.

To beat any specific level there are a lot of youtube videos out there with
walkthroughs.  Hence, I am not going to do a level-by-level walkthrough. It 
would be redundant and hard to really follow anyways being text-based.

So here is the Table of Contents:

I. PLANT OVERVIEW - If you skim this, at least read the ** marked sections
   which discuss specific strengths or weaknesses of a plant.

II. IAP DISCUSSION - IAPs are actually done pretty well in PvZ2.  I talk about
   how to get the most out of them.

III. COIN MANAGEMENT

IV. DEALING WITH MULTI-STAR LEVEL RESTRICTIONS

V. GENERAL HINTS 

VI. IMITATOR IDEAS


Hope this is helpful!

-- RandomSome1.  (aka  joe1512 as per tips Ive left on other sites)


I. PLANT OVERVIEW
-----------------


a) SUNFLOWER/TWINFLOWER - These are your resource generating plants. The main
thing to balance is how long do you crank out sunflowers, vs when to start
dropping real defenses.

One strategy is to use Mines/etc to delay the initial zombies while you build
 up your resources.  Money used on mines however is permanently lost and does
 not contribute to continuing resources.
Another strat is to drop a few sunflowers and use cheap but permanent plants to
 deal with early zombies. This gives slower resource generation but tends to
 give you a breather when your existing defense attacks the second zombie that
 later comes out on that row.

You also need to balance the space-efficiency of Twin-Sunflowers, vs their
much higher cooldown and lower cost-efficiency. This depends on how cramped
your battlefield is.  Many will drop 2 Sunflowers, then get 3 Twinflowers for
the remainder of that column.

** You DO NOT WANT to plant your sunflowers at the very back!  Sunflowers are 
cheaper than your shooters and its much better for the shooters to be protected.
This also helps vs zombies that can appear in your midranks. You do NOT want
them to land behind all your shooters and start munching on sunflowers with 
no way to stop them!  Plant them on the 3rd/4th Column;try it out.

FOOD: Sunflower produces an instant 125 sun.  Twins produce an instant 225 sun.

* A good strategy for hard levels is to buy two plant foods, use 1 on Sunflower
  then plant a twinflower and use the food on that.  This gives you a HUGE
  head start.  Keep planting twinflowers while setting up defenses.

* Using Plant Food on a twinflower is a good way to pass some of the levels that
require you to generate X amount of Sun, in a pinch.



b) PEASHOOTER - 100 Sun Basic but lousy plant. Other similarly priced plants 
deal similar damage but offer more utility.

FOOD: Big stream of bullets down the row that deals substantial damage.



c) WALL-NUT - 50 Sun. Stops most enemy zombies who must chew through it in order
 to proceed towards you.
I am a fan of wallnuts and use them often.  Keep in mind that they are using
 sun while not doing any actual damage. They are thus best used when you dont
 have a lot of space to work with, such that your shooters wont have time to
 kill zombies before they are within eating distance.

FOOD: Gives them a suit of armor, increasing their health considerably.
Extremely useful if you find a food and already have 4. Use it on the nut.

** You can manually Shovel a wounded wallnut and replace with a fresh one. 
You don't have to have the First-Aid unlocked to do this.



d) POTATO MINE - 25 Sun Blows up a zombie that steps on it. Very cheap, but a
 long 'arming' period.  Has to be used in advance.  
This is used in the "delaying strategy" where you set up your sunflowers
and blow up approaching zombies while building up Sun.  It can also be
an alternative to the WallNut in areas where you don't have much space before
zombies are within eating range.  Instead of 50 sun wallnut+shooter, this
kills a threat for very cheap.

FOOD: Instantly arms it AND generates several copies of it. A weak power.



e) CabbagePult - 100 Sun. Same price as Peashooter but much better.  Shoots
 OVER any obstacles.  Attacks slower but deals twice the damage per hit.

FOOD: Attacks EVERY onscreen enemy with a cabbage, dealing massive damage.

* Its special power COUNTERS enemies that can appear in unusual locations
such as Exploding Cannons, Swingers, Dust Devil guys, Prospector, etc.



f) Bloomerang - 175 sun.  Fires boomerangs that can hit up to 3 enemies,
 then return and hit them again.  For its cost, it actually has about
 2/3rds the firepower of a peashooter vs 1 foe.  However, it shines 
 against multiple enemies which multiplies its effective firepower.

FOOD: Shoots boomerangs in 4 directions.  Surprisingly weak, almost
always used as a bad version of the Peashooter power.  It can theoretically
be used against enemies that have gotten behind or beside it.

** Boomerangs are AMAZING against CANNONS and BARRELS.  Most plants struggle
vs barrels because they are so tough. But the boomerang takes out the zombie
that is PUSHING the barrel, making it a sitting duck.  The cannon's constant
zombie spam can tank modest attacks indefinitely.  But the boomerang will
always penetrate and do 2 pts of damage per attack no matter what.



g) GraveBuster - 0 Sun.  Eats graves in Ancient Egypt.  Really useful to
 reclaim space for building and prevent graves from blocking non-catapult
 type weapons from working.
The only down side is that it takes a Plant Slot. And moderate cooldown.



h) Iceberg Lettuce - 0 Sun.  Freezes zombies for 10 seconds.
This is one of the BEST plants in the game!  Seriously!  It works perfectly
to delay early game zombies while planting Sunflowers, allow weaker plants
to kill tougher enemies (coneheads,etc), and gives you a breather long
enough to build a defense.

FOOD: Freezes ALL zombies on the screen.  Very powerful and overlooked.

** This plant PERMANENTLY neutralizes the Egyptian Archeologist..the one
with the torch that 1-shots ANY of your plants, including wallnuts. One
freeze puts out his torch and turns him into a normal zombie effectively!



i) Bonk Choy - 150 Sun.  Rapidly attacks zombies within 2 squares range.
A really fun plant, but honestly not very useful.  The problem is that
 he is NO TOUGHER than any other plant!  His high firepower is enough to
 kill weak zombies but any armored zombie will be able to eat him before
 he can defeat them.   Unimpressive and disappointing.  I really wanted
 him to be a Wall-Nut/Melee type combo.  The hitting behind ability is
 pretty worthless too.
Basically you MUST use a wall-nut with this guy. This makes him very
 vulnerable to Archeologists and anyone that can bypass front ranks.
His only utility is that he can be put in the front where you wouldnt
 want your shooters due to lessened effectiveness.  Spikes eventually take
 over this role however.

FOOD: Rapid attack that does lots of damage, but the range stinks.



j) Kernel-Pult - 100 sun.  Like a cabbage-pult in that it shoots half the
 speed of a Peashooter, and fires over obstacles.  However, this plant
 is odd in that it will shoot a Kernel which only deals 1 damage
 ( not 2 like a same-priced cabbage).  However it occasionally shoots a butter
 projectile that does two damage and STUNS the enemy for 5 seconds.
Thus this plant effectively slows down enemy zombies on average.  It is
 a bit unreliable though.
I like this plant because it is cheap, kills early zombies just fine, yet
 maintains a good amount of Utility later on.

FOOD: Does a BUTTER attack at every enemy onscreen.  This only does 2 damage
unlike the 5+ damage of the Cabbage power, but stuns every enemy for a while.
Hence this power is superior to the Freeze one in my opinion.

** A butter attack will INSTANTLY KILL any flying enemy!  This includes the
zombies tied to a pelican in the pirate levels, as well as the horribly
annoying Parrots that the Captains launch.

** Therefore, use the Plant Food power when there are these kinds of foes
 on the screen.  In particular you must use this power vs the PARROT ONLY
 when it lands on your plant and is about to carry them off.  The Power
 cannot hit a Parrot in flight.



k) Repeater - 200 sun.  Double-strength pea shooter.  
This is a much stronger plant than the normal pea shooter, being twice as
 space-efficient, yet not costing any more than double.  It is still 
 inexpensive enough to be able to be used reasonably early in the game.
However, it is rare to be able to use this as your very first drop to take
 out early game zombies.  

FOOD: Rapid volley of peas doing massive damage, just like the Peashooter.
However, it finishes by firing one very large Pea that does high damage.


m) Snapdragon - 150 sun.  Flame attack that hits enemies two squares away
 as well as in the above and below column.
I don't really like this plant all that much.  A BonkChoy can be used
 early and actually kill normal zombies.  This plant cannot defeat even one
 normal zombie that approaches it, instead spreading its firepower over 3
 rows.
Its usage is similar to the bonk choy in that WallNuts are necessary for it
 to be effective.  You also must commit to having quite a few of them.
This means that it can be easily hosed by Archeologists, as well as foes that
can bypass early columns of defenses.

FOOD: Hits a 3x3 area in front of it for high damage.  Really weak power.

** You can DEFINITELY HOSE YOURSELF with this plant!!!  If you see an 
archaelogist and use the Freeze trick to extinguish its torch so that it does
not auto-kill your WallNut.  Guess what happens when you hit it with FIRE?!
You guessed it.  It relights the torch and it will autokill your wallnut and
your Snapdragon.  This plant also unfreezes any frozen foe, meaning even with
freeze it still cannot 1v1 even a basic zombie.  Yuck!


n) Spikeweed  100 sun.  Damages enemies that step on it.  Typically deals 
 around 5 peas worth of damage to a normal speed zombie.
This plant is a much better alternative to the Snapdragon/Choy. It CANNOT
 be killed by anything except a Barrel, so you can happily deploy it on
 the front lines when space starts running out, to get more firepower.

FOOD: Lousy power that does damage to foes in that column.  However, it 
 seems to only affect spaces that have no plants in them.

** This plant is a bit of a NOOB TRAP against barrels.  Many look at it and
think that it counters barrels right?  Um, not really.  Barrels counter IT!
100 sun to kill 1 barrel is a bad trade. A cherry bomb for 150 will kill a
lot more stuff by way of comparison.   I'd avoid using these vs barrel
levels.


o) Coconut Cannon 400 sun.  Manually fired. Shoots a projectile that kills
 all within a small area of effect.
I don't really like this plant.  It takes forever to get it in the field,
 has to be manually clicked, and is easily blocked by weaker zombies. It
 needs to be able to take out problem zombies really fast or take out big
 areas of them to be of use.

FOOD: Wakes cannon (if needed), fires 1 giant coconut that pushes enemies 
back and kills them.



p) Spring Bean 50 sun.  Bounces zombies back a space then goes to sleep.
This plant is used for Water levels, as it will insta-kill any zombie that
 is within 1 range of any water...even Barrels!
After usage, it goes to sleep for 20 seconds or so.  This means that it
 is meant for places where zombies only occasionally show up. You cannot
 really protect it during recharge either except through Iceberg, etc.

** Many of the 3 star pirate levels can be beated MUCH easier using this!
One bean will be able to take out pretty much an entire level worth of
rope-swinging pirates.  As long as you can deal with the Cannons and
Pelicans (if they exist on the level), these can work much much better 
than dropping a WallNut at the same location!

* You can always shovel and replant one if you need an emergency reload.

* Dont forget, these guys KILL BARRELS in 1 hit, includuing the 2 mini
 zombies within!




q) Cherry Bomb. 150 Sun.  Blows up, killing zombies in a medium area.
Very powerful plant but of extremely limited use.  150 sun is a LOT
 which will never again be able to help you.  Using early on will hugely
 gimp your defenses.
It also doesn't help you vs Cannons which is a bummer.
Its primary use is for emergencies vs enemies that have gotten past your
 lines.
It is satisfying to use lategame on huge groups, but youve got enough
 firepower already to deal with it anyways, surely.

FOOD:  n/a



r) Spike Rock - 250 Sun.  Upgraded spikeweed.  Double damage, kills 3
 wheeled vehicles.
Little used plant.  The spikeweed is already sufficient to extend your
 firepower to the front ranks when space is tight.  This one is less
 cost-effective and its better space-effectiveness isn't as useful in
 my opinion since you can place it anywhere.
Its best use is on levels with BARRELS.  It kills 2 of them for free,
 only dying on the 3rd barrel.  In most levels though, there aren't
 ever 3 barrels in the same lane, and if they are then youve gotten
 a ton of damage in already with this plant.
Another idea is to put it in front of a WallNut.  This does tons of
damage to most zombies, failing vs Pelicans and Archeologists.
Its an improved version of the Bonk/Snapdragon strategy.

FOOD: Sucks in all enemies on that Row toward itself and deals lots of
damage.  A bit weak and can actually HELP the zombies move in faster.
However, theoretically usable vs a zombie that has bypassed you somehow.



s) ThreePeater - 300 sun.   Triple shot peashooter, except shoots ONE
 pea in THREE DIFFERENT ROWS!
This plant is very space-effective, being 3 peashooters in 1 plant.
 It is very hard to use well though.
It cost a fortune making it difficult to drop early on. 
Its firepower per lane is 1/3rd of its cost!  Yuck.
It is not usable on the 1st or 5th row since you would waste 1/3rd of
 its firepower.
Using it on the 2nd and 4th row is the best use.  This does cause an
 odd distribution as the 3rd row will have DOUBLE firepower. You 
 usually want equal firepower per row.

FOOD: Fires projectiles everywhere hitting most enemies in front of it.
 Its kind of weak honestly.


** Using these on Rows 2/4 and Lighting on 1/5 will even out the power,
 such that Row 1/2/4/5 will have Pea and Zap, and row 3 has double pea.

** If you are gonna use this, drop your sunflowers on row 3, or 1/5,
 and definitely not on 2 and 4.



t) Split Pea  125 Sun.  Shoots 1 pea forward, 2 back.
While seemingly very cost effective, shooting backwards is usually not
 very desirable, except in edge cases.  It usually means you messed
 up.  Its very weak firepower forward and not cost or space effective.

FOOD:  A combination of Peashooters plant food ability firing forward
 PLUS the repeater ability firing backwards.





u) Chili Bean  50 sun.  Any zombie that eats this will die and make a 
 cloud of Slowing affecting nearby zombies.
Basically a much better version of the Potato Mine that instantly arms
 and has a lingering effect...though not much of one.
Best used for early game delaying while ramping up sunflowers, as well
 as dealing with zombies that have bypassed your defenses.

FOOD: Clones itself twice over and applies to random lanes.  Meh.


v) Lightning Reed 125 sun.  Zaps enemies with lightning.  Chains and
 hits other zombies within a small radius.  Furthermore it can hit
 zombies in the ABOVE and BELOW lanes too!
One of my favorites.  Introduced late as an anti-chicken plant, this
 is an awesome plant.  Cheap enough to drop early game, it has enough
 firepower to 1v1 early game zombies.
The fact that one in lane 2/4 can cover all 5 lanes is pretty sweet.
However its overall firepower vs 1 foe is about 2/3rds that of a 
 peashooter.  Still, in bulk, they deal tons of damage especially vs
 large groups of enemies.
Lots of these plus a Wallnut defense is very formidable.
Its only weakness is it isn't very Space-efficient and has trouble vs
extremely armored foes. Hence need for Spikeweed/Wallnut/Freeze

FOOD: Creates a Cloud that runs around zapping enemies.  Works much
like the Lightning Powerup, except you cannot control it.
One of the best powers out there.

** Hard counters chicken farmer zombies.  These don't show up much, 
but don't forget about them when getting those stars.

** AMAZING vs Barrels, since it hits the barrel and CHAINS to kill the
 much weaker zombie pushing the barrel. Making it a sitting duck.

** Sucks vs PARROTS who apparently can take a comical amount of
 lightning damage.  Feather insulation FTW?

** However, if you time it right you can trigger the cloud just as 
the parrot lands causing it to take massive cloud damage and die.



u) TallNut 125 sun.  Bigger version of WallNut.  Unlike in PvZ1, this
 does not seem to block any more than normal zombies.
Has twice normal health, but costs more.
Same uses as normal walnuts.

FOOD: Gains armor, as per normal wall nut.

** Remember you can take BOTH PLANTS and use them both when appropriate.
This halves the cooldown effectively.



v)  Pea Pod  125 sun per planting.  Peashooter stackable to 5!
Awesome plant, one of my favorites.
Cheap enough to use early to kill beginning zombies, and then 
 you can pile them up to have 5 peashooters worth of firepower all
 in ONE SLOT!  Amazing.  Slightly less cost-effective however
 to compensate.

FOOD: Fires volley of large peas. Kind of lousy really as the initial
 delay can cause issues with targeting and fast killing.

** DO NOT USE THESE on "only have X plants total" levels. EACH PLANTING
 counts as a plant!   Fail. :-(

** DO NOT USE THESE on "only use X amount of Sun" levels.  They just
 aren't cost effective enough to work well.

** ABSOLUTELY use these on the Wild West wagon levels!  Drop 1 ASAP in
 the 5-column wagon and crank it up ASAP to 5 peas.



w) Melon-pult  325 sun.  Like a big Cabbage, doing 4 pea damage per shot.
Also does AREA EFFECT damage in a 1 square radius.
Costs 325 and does double damage of the 100 sun Cabbage.  Not exactly
 a very good deal.  So expensive that you cannot use it until much later.
I prefer cheaper Area effect solutions such as Spikeweed, Lightning, 
 boomerang, etc.

FOOD: Fires 8 damage melons at EVERYTHING on the screen.  Pretty much
 the ultimate Plant food ability.



x) Winter Melon  500 sun.  Like melon-pult but with slowing effect.
Havent really used this one.  Just too expensive, unless you cheat like
 crazy with plant food and twin sunflowers.
Even then I can see better uses for the Sun.

FOOD: Everyone on screen eats an 8 damage frost-melon.  Stupidly 
 powerful.

** Tempting to get one of these for hard lategame levels where you can
 simply use its crazy good Plant Food power to dominate.



II. IAP DISCUSSION
------------------

If you want to support the developers through IAPs this is perfectly
 fine.  That said, there is a wide variety of things you can spend cash
 on.  You want to be smart about what you buy.  Here are the choices:

a) Coins - NO!  Don't buy coins.  In general gameplay you simply do not
 need coins.  You typically get around 400 coins per level that you play
 and it is pretty easy to grind for coins, plus keys at the same time.
Even in the hardest levels you only really need to spend 2k of coins to
 get a massive advantage.


b) Keys/Gates - NO!  Waste of money. By the time you get all stars on a
 levelyou will surely have gotten all the keys that you need.  Keys 
 simply  allow you to get certain upgrades slightly faster. Not worth it.


c) Plants - These are worthwhile purchases as they give you new 
 strategic options.   However, note that they will allow you unlock
 plants that you can ALREADY unlock later on by playing!  Hence, you
 want to ensure that you only ever buy the truly LOCKED plants that
 cannot be otherwise obtained.

   i) SnowPea - decent choice. good early on and great utility later.

   ii) torchwood - meh. I never liked it in PvZ1. very 1 dimensional.

   iii) Squash - no need. potato mine is plenty early. Then Chili. 
                 It is better than Chili Bean for sure, especially
                 for killing enemies behind you.

   iv) Jalapeno - This is pretty redundant with Cherry bomb.

   v) Imitator - YES!  Great choice. TONS of awesome uses for this.

   vi) Power Lily - No idea how it works. Wasn't in PVZ1 so I have
                    no opinion or advise.


d) Unlocking Worlds - Absolutely not! Why pay to skip content!?!?


e) Abilities.  These are decent choices.  You DO get these later on,
               but I believe they stack.  I think...

    i) More Sun - Good choice.  Useful early to streamline sunflower 
          planting, AND lategame to rush TwinFlower and PlantFeed.

    ii) Shovel boost - This just isn't much of a factor.

    iii) More slots for plants - Skip this.  Early game you may feel
         like you need the slots but by midgame I dont even use 
         several of my slots.


III. COIN MANAGEMENT
--------------------

There are several things you can do with Coins.  Buying powerups 
 that let you kill zombies with gestures, and buying Plant Food.

I would actually recommend to AVOID using the gestures altogehter
 except maybe as a last resort to win a hard level that you have
 invested in already.  
Like mines and bombs, they help you get by but are somewhat of a 
 trap.  They contribute NOTHING to your permanent defenses so once
 you get past the problem area, you will be in the same situation
 on the very next wave!  Except worse most likely.
The only legit usage would be on the awful "can only lose X plants"
 levels especially on the Pirate levels vs the Parrot zombies.
Those are extremely luck-based and taking out a Captain quickly is
 worthwhile, although there are better Plant Food Power ways.

It is better to use your coins UP FRONT to establish strong defense
 quickly, rather than using it to bail yourself out.  If you did
 it right, your defenses should be more than adequate to deal with
 most situations.

Strat 1: Drop a Sunflower, buy a plant food, feed to sunflower. 
This gives you a 125 Sun head start.  You would then use this Sun to

a) Drop a twinflower immediately, then sunflower/twinflower ramp up.
 You might even buy a SECOND plant food to use on the TwinFlower.

b) Be able to immediately drop WallNuts on key places to have them
 all ready early to avoid waiting on cooldowns later.

c) use a Imitated Sunflower to drop Sunflowers at double the normal
 rate.

d) Use an imitated Twinflower along with second plant food to 
 hugely increase production extremely quickly.

That said, you should rarely use coins.  NEVER use them just because
 you can.  Save em up for difficult levels.
NEVER use coins on the first go at a level!  I recommend not using
 coins to jumpstart until youve tried the level at least twice.
Using coins to jumpstart a failure strategy will simply waste coins,
 or worse yet you spend more and more coins to salvage the level 
 and waste 20k on one freaking level!

As I say in the general comments, use the PRESET DEFENSES levels
 or at least Conveyer belt levels to grind for coins and keys.
It is less stressful, much faster due to no sunflower management and
 there is no ramp up period which means zombies come out quickly.
The faster zombies come out, the more chances for earning coins!




IV. DEALING WITH MULTISTAR RESTRICTIONS
---------------------------------------

All the 3 star maps are similar in that they hand you restrictions.
Here is how to think about dealing with each one.

**a) Must produce X Sun

 Pretty easy.  You want to use the sunflower spam strategy and use 
 mines,etc to delay as much as possible,
 unless paired with the "can only lose X plants" restriction.

Always use TwinFlowers for your second row of plants.

Drop normal sunflowers towards lategame up front.  Think of them as
 really lousy WallNuts. :-)  Anything to increase Sun production.

It doesnt have to be SMART sun production, just any ole production.

Also you can drop PLANT FOOD on twinflowers for +225.

You can also do the Dirty Delay strategy.  If you are on the last
 wave and not quite there, simply delay.  Let the 1 zombie left
 STAY ALIVE!  Block him with a WallNut and SHOVEL YOUR SHOOTERS
 on that row!!
 Or block him with Ice.  If you cannot lose any more plants, use
 plant food to reinforce a wallnut.  
Meanwhile you plant sunflowers like crazy and take it out once 
 youve gotten your goal.


**b) Can only lose X Number of Plants.

 One of the hardest types to deal with, since it virtually removes
 your ability to use mines, bombs, lettuce, and limits WallNut
 use.

Your main enemy here is the awful Pirate Captain with GG Parrot
who says "BWAAK...YOU LOSE!".

Other big foes are the jumpers...anything that can get behind your
front lines.  Pirate rope swingers, Claim Jumpers, Dust devils.

Cannons are a big threat too, as they will explode eventually and
 spew mini-zombies all throughout your backline.  This almost 
 guarantees loss of several plants.

Archeologists are a big problem too since they insta-kill your
 plants.  You cannot even use Lettuce to extinguish them!

To deal, you must get at least 1 cheap plant and be ready to drop
 it after your 3rd sunflower. I recommend a Cabbage, Kernel, 
 Lightning, or Pea Pod ideally.   This lets you drop a plant to 
 kill each new zombie per row, while letting you still drop 
 sunflowers to ramp up.


**c) Cannot use any Sun for X Seconds.

 I thought this was the hardest restriction until I learned that 
 spending Sun ONLY RESETS THE TIMER, it doesn't fail the level!
I spent good coin on Gestures and dropping lettuce to delay at
 the very beginning, making it much harder than it needed to be.

Actually this restriction is trivial.  By the final wave you hardly 
 ever need to keep spending Sun anways. So build your defenses like
 normal.  Then once you are good, STOP USING SUN.  Easy!  You can
 still use Lettuce and collect sun and use Plantfood.

You can also do the Delay Cheese by shoveling your defenses to avoid
 killing the very last zombie and using an existing Wallnut and/or
 lettuce to delay it until you hit the counter. Then finish it off.

Just don't FORGET about this restriction like I sometimes do!!


**d) Don't Plant on Spore Colony.

This one is hard as it eats two columns of space!  It is particularly
 difficult on Pirate levels.

Your main threats are zombies that bypass defenses such as DustDevils
 etc.  Use a plant that can deal with those issues if they are in
 the level, such as a CabbagePult's Plantfood power.

Space-efficiency becomes a much bigger deal meaning you will usually
 want to go 2 rows of sunflower but use BIG plants like Pea Pod or
 Melon or the like, while using mines,bombs to delay.

If you are plant-loss restricted too, you will have to go with 1 row
 of sunflower (with twinflower), and drop an early game plant such
 as Corn or Lightning, then drop a really big plant next.


**e) Dont Trample the Flowers

This is a difficult restriction as it effectively makes the zombies
 only have to walk half the usual distance to "win".

Hence, protection tactics are called for.  Lettuce to delay, bombs to
 delay.  Use of Wall Nuts is encouraged and using Tall Nuts TOO in
 order to half the cooldown can be beneficial.

Use of SpikeWeed/Rock is a good way to frontload some defenses if 
 the enemy doesn't have too many bypass-zombies.  Put a Spike right in 
 front of your Walls.

Watch the state of your Walls!  Be ready to shovel and replace when you
 have time, OR use plant power to reinforce to prevent an untimely loss.

You have a good deal of space, so you will want to use cheaper plants
 with utility such as Corn or Lightning.  Repeaters are good too.
There is no need to save up for hugely expensive plants.
Corn especially has the nice Slowing effect making it a good candidate.

Be ready for an emergency.  A Corn Kernel Food power will freeze all 
 enemies on the screen, as will a Powered Lettuce.  A quick use can
 prevent a loss when things get hairy.

Some zombies are not a threat to your flowers.  Flying rope zombies do
 nothing, as do prospectors and Dust Devils.  They blow right past the
 flowers but don't fail the level.


**f) Only use X Sun.

This is a challenging restriction which means that you must conserve.

That means minimal use of Bombs which cost Sun but dont boost permanent
 defenses.

You need Cost-effective plants too such as Corn, Lightning, Repeater.
Pea Pods are out.

You generally only use 1 row of sunflowers; they use up your Sun limit!
 That means only lettuce used for delaying and you crank out cheaper
 plants ASAP.

WallNuts are LESS helpful here as they cost sun but have no firepower.
 Hence you can get overwhelmed easier.  You must prioritize offense.


**g) Kill X Zombies in Y seconds.

An easy restriction. All you really need to do is store up Plant Food
 for the final wave.  Then use it on your offensive plants all at once.

You do NOT need to pick certain plants with more "bursty damage" or
 anything.  I have never once failed this restriction, even when I have
 occasionally forgotten about it!


**h) Never have more than X Plants

This is a moderately challenging restriction.  Similar to the Spore
 Colony one, you have to focus on very Space-Efficient plants.

Go ahead and use lots of sunflowers though, the usual 2 rows if no
 "lose X plants" restriction.  Use Twinflowers when you can.
 The idea is to generate a lot of sun quickly while using delay tactics
 so you can drop the Repeaters, etc.

You really need to use TwinFlowers on this level, digging up sunflower
 and replacing them.

Over time you will start removing Sunflowers and replacing with 
 offensive plants.  By starting with lots of Sunflowers, you build up
 a reserve midgame that you can use to keep dropping offense.

Your biggest problem on this level is carelessness.  Be extremely
 careful with any 1-shot plants such as Lettuce, Bombs, etc!!!

DO NOT USE PEA PODS!!!   Each planting counts as a seperate plant,
 making for a quick loss.

You might also consider multi-shot plants for these levels:
 You can use Lightning, Threepeaters, SnapDragons on Rows 2 and 4 and
 it will cover ALL FIVE LANES, with double firepower in the middle one.
If you do, make sure to put Sunflowers in the midlane, then 1 and 5
 to make room for the 2/4 lane plants.



V. GENERAL STRATEGIES AND TIPS
------------------------------

1) On the map, always move forward as quickly as possible.  DO NOT grind
 old levels for cash or even keys or stars.
Leave Egypt ASAP for Pirate, and ASAP to Wild West once you have the
 minimum number of stars.
This is the FASTEST WAY to get new Plants and abilities. These will be
 very helpful once you DO go back to get keys and Stars.



2) Need to grind for coins or Keys?   Do the levels where you start with
 X amount of Sun and pre-build everything.  Once you find one that works
 these are generally much easier, faster, and less stressful than normal
 levels.  
 Enemies come out fast and furious so theres no wind-up period.  More
 killing means more cash/key chances.

 Conveyer belt levels might also be a good choice, depending on your 
 preference.


3) YETI levels.  I read from several places how you can BLOCK the yeti 
 by putting a wall nut behind him.  IT DIDNT WORK!!   I know those sites
 all plagarize each other but geez.
 Instead, pick at least 1 plant with a 1-column Pwnage plant food power.
 The repeater (2x shooter) is the easiest and generally best to use.
 one shot of Plant Food will pretty much take out the Yeti.
If you DO screw up and he is about to retreat, RESTART THE LEVEL.  Then
 note which lane he was in and reinforce it heavily!
If you restart AFTER he escapes... he won't respawn. Trust me. :-)


4) Don't overdo the 1 shot plants.  Its better to use your Sun to make
 permanent defenses, not overuse mines,bombs,etc.



5) Those Pirate Captains suck bad.  I loathe those Parrots that steal
 your plants.  Consider the following ways to deal with them:
a) Freeze,bomb them.  (not so good on the "cant lose but X plants" levels)
b) Use Plant Powers to kill them very fast.  This is difficult to do
 however as theres too much lagtime on most powers.
c) Use the CORN plant food power RIGHT as the parrot lands and the 
 butter will 1 shot it.  It MUST be stationary though or no Butter
 will be launched.
d) Lightning plants are theoretically good but they seem to do very 
 little damage vs parrots until you have a TON of them.
e) Plant food Power on Repeaters will take out a parrot after it lands
  on your plant if you are fast enough.


6)  If you ever have maxed plant food stored and you get another one,
use one immediately and get the new one to replace it.  Choices are:
 a) Blasting a bunch of zombies obviously if needed.
 b) Wall nut reinforcement.
 c) insta-sun from Sun/Twinflower.
 d) Clone any Potato/Chili mine.
 e) Lightning Plant, since the cloud sticks around for a while.


7) Dem Barrels.  I hate them as they are incredibly hard to kill. As
 I said on my plant-specific comments, you should take them out by:
a) Lightning plants to kill the PUSHER.
b) Boomerangs to kill the PUSHER.
c) Spring Bean by the water will 1-shot them!
d) SpikeROCK (250 sun version) will kill 3 of them. Dont use Weed
   because 100 sun is a lot to kill 1 barrel, but 250 to take out
   2 of them and do tons of damage in the meantime is well worth it.
   You rarely even see 3 barrels in 1 given lane.


8) Enemy cannons.  Use Boomerangs.  ONLY Boomerangs will CONSISTENTLY
 do enough damage to take them out before they explode and spew
 mini-zombies behind your lines!
 All other plants tend to get distracted and blocked by the constant
 mini-zombie spam and don't do enough damage to the actual cannon.


9) On the challenge levels (the never ending pyramid, etc), you really
 want to leave 1+ plant food leftover at the end of each level. THEY 
 CARRY OVER!!
This allows you to immediately use it on a sunflower/twinflower and get
 a big head start.
Such a head start helps ensure you don't need the Plant food for actual
 battle nearly as much since you will be so far ahead.


10) There IS no Dr Zomboss fight currently.  All the various strategy sites
 say he appears after beating wild West.  Yeah he APPEARS and taunts you,
 but you cannot yet fight him.
 There are actually several sites that discuss strategies on how to beat
 him, but they are clueless and plagarize each other.


11) Zombies attack in the same pattern for all levels.  If you lose, 
 try to consider what Bad Thing happened and be ready for that threat..
 in the specific lane where it happened.
Maybe that Pelican-rope-zombie caught you by surprise since it came so
 early and all you had was a spring bean.  Remember it and put a corn
 kernel in that exact lane.
Are all the barrels coming down a specific lane?  Keep that in mind and
 be ready for it.


12) You can collect Sun and stuff by SWIPING.  This works WAY BETTER than
 tapping on things!  Adjust to do swiping and it will improve your game.


13) The mummy memory levels are annoying.  However you can interrupt the
 turning animation of the cards!  When you click a card it turns over and
 reveals a symbol.  This makes you think you have to wait for it to be
 done but this is not so.  Clicking another card will immediately reveal
 the original (and second) cards.
One could theoretically just click like crazy with multiple fingers and
 randomly make some progress as well as reveal lots of cards quickly.




VI. Bonus Section.  Uses for Imitator
--------------------------------------

I broke down and bought this guy, since I loved him from PVZ1. He has many
 uses as he basically gives you another copy of any given plant, effectively
 halfing its cooldown.

a) Sunflower - Imitating a Sunflower can greatly increase your resource
 production rampup.  There are quite a few ways to do this.   Using a Plant
 food that you buy immediately is the most common.  This ensures you can get
 2 full rows of sunflower in record speed.
 The starting with more sun passives can be helpful in this regard. Just
 cloning a sunflower normally will not give much of a boost, without the
 passives or fast plant food.

b) Twinflower - If you have one or both initial Sun boosts you can drop a 
 twinflower, Plant food it, then drop the cloned twinflower and get a quick
 column of twinflowers.  The long Cooldown of Twinflower is one of its
 biggest restrictions.

c) Lettuce - A second set of lettuce can be very helpful, since it costs no
 sun and gives a good deal of utility.  This is my typical use for most 
 levels (except cant lose but X plant ones).

d) WallNut - Allows double the wallnut droppage.  Kind of outdated when you
 get TallNut, but its still useful due to much lower cost of wallnut.

e) Shooter - I have used imitator to clone my primary offensive plant
 (pea pod) on a level.  This ensured I could crank them out really fast once
 I had my Sun generating quickly.  Marginal use I guess but it did help out
 for "free".

f) Gravebuster - You probably dont need TWo of them for a level but it is
 a possibillity.

g) Potato Mine/Cherry/Chili - Personally I find Lettuce clone to be more 
 useful overall.  The bombs tend to only be useful really early (potato) or
 really late (cherry).



Good luck!!!