PopCap Games' Plants vs. Zombies might've started as a quirky tower defense game, but over time it's become a legitimate multimedia empire. Not only has the original title been ported to every platform under the sun, but it spawned a microtransaction-laden sequel and multiplayer-oriented shooter, as well as a successful line of plushies, t-shirts, children's books, toys, and board games.
And now, if user "killarki" has anything to say about it, Plants vs. Zombies might also become a line of LEGOs, courtesy of the LEGO Ideas website. The proposed set includes figures for six different plants (Sunflower, Peashooter, Chomper, Wall-Nut, Potato Mine, and Snow Pea), four zombie mini-figs, and a backyard playset that evokes the game's tile-based battlefield.
Don't get too excited, though; there are a number of obstacles to overcome before Plants vs. Zombies LEGOs become reality. First, killarki's pitch has to make it through the LEGO Ideas voting process. On the LEGO Ideas website, anyone can propose potential LEGO sets. The community votes on projects that they like. Any proposal that gets over 10,000 votes will be considered for production; gathering the requisite number of votes doesn't guarantee that a set will be made, just that LEGO corporate will give it a closer look.
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In the past, LEGO Ideas has led to playsets based on gamer-friendly properties like Back to the Future, Ghostbusters and Minecraft. At the time of writing, Plants vs. Zombies has 828 votes, with 357 days left to go. 10,000 votes might sound like a lot, but it's not an insurmountable goal. However, that's not the only problem.
Even if the Plants vs. Zombies project somehow makes it to the approval stage, lawyers will likely shut the whole thing down. See, LEGO's main competitor, K'Nex, already owns the Plants vs. Zombies license. If LEGO really wants to make a Plants vs. Zombies set, they'll likely need to part with a large sum of cash. Realistically? This proposal was doomed before it ever got started.
LEGO has a funny relationship with the gaming industry. With the help of TT Games, LEGO's turned licenses like Star Wars, Batman, and The Lord of the Rings into a series of generally well-received video games. However, the Danish-based toymaker rarely goes in the other direction; with the exception of an upcoming Minecraft set, LEGO doesn't seem too interested in recreating popular games in plastic brick form.
It's easy to imagine gamers snatching up sets based on Assassin's Creed or Mass Effect -- or, for the more retro-minded, games like Super Mario Bros. or Mega Man. While there are probably some licensing blockades here, too, to an outside observer it looks like LEGO's simply leaving money on the table.
Source: LEGO Ideas