These days, play-to-earn crypto games are all the rage. Thanks to the rise of NFTs and cryptocurrency, avid gamers can now earn rewards with actual monetary value for the time they spend behind the screen.
One popular play-to-earn crypto game is Plant vs Undead (PVU). This tower defense game lets you compete with other players and farm your own garden of NFTs.
But how do you actually play Plant vs Undead? And, more importantly, is the game’s native token PVU a good investment to add to your portfolio?
What Is Plant vs Undead?
Plant vs Undead is a player-versus-player tower defense game that operates on the Binance Smart Chain. In PVU, players collect in-game assets and also own these assets as NFTs.
As for the gameplay itself, Plant vs Undead is basically a clone of the popular video game Plants vs. Zombies from Electronics Arts that was released in 2009.
Plant vs Undead is similar to other play-to-earn crypto games like Axie Infinity. The game lets players earn NFTs of in-game assets. And, the platform’s native token PVU is also exchangeable for USD on various decentralized exchanges (DEXs).
How Do You Play Plant vs Undead?
There are two different game modes in Plant vs Undead:
- PVP Mode: Players place different plants within a garden plot to defend their Mother Tree against hordes of zombies. Plants have different abilities, like damaging certain undead monsters more or slowing monsters down. As you destroy monsters, you have the chance to earn PVU tokens.
- Farm Mode: With farm mode, players create a garden of various plants in a non player-versus-player environment. Plants gradually generate Light Energy (LE), another token in Plant vs Undead. You exchange LE tokens for PVU tokens to buy more plants or to sell your tokens on a decentralized exchange for actual cash.
So in short, you use PVU tokens to buy more plants to help defend your garden in the PVP mode or plants for farm mode that help you generate Light Energy yield.
The more Light Energy you earn, the more PVU tokens you can get, expediting the process of growing a better garden. Over time, you can also sell off your PVU tokens on a variety of DEXs for regular fiat or other popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Solana.
That’s how to play Plant vs Undead in a nutshell. But if you want to try out this play-to-earn crypto game yourself, there’s a few steps involved.
1. Install & Connect MetaMask Wallet
You need a MetaMask wallet to play Plant vs Undead. MetaMask is a free software cryptocurrency wallet that works with the Ethereum blockchain.
You download MetaMask as a browser extension. Creating a wallet is free, and you just need to backup a private seed phrase MetaMask generates in case you ever lose access to your account.
Once you download MetaMask, Plant vs Undead asks you to connect your wallet to its player-versus-player game mode and its farming mode.
These are two separate platforms, which is a bit confusing. But all you have to do is click “sign in with MetaMask” on each gamemode to gain access to Plant vs Undead.
2. Purchase 5 PVU Tokens
The next step in playing Plant vs Undead is to purchase 5 starting PVU tokens. This is because you need some starting resources to buy tools and seeds to plant your garden. Without your initial 5 PVU, you can’t plant anything to begin generating LE, so you’re completely stuck.
This step isn’t very intuitive, but it’s necessary. Currently, decentralized exchange PancakeSwap is the most popular way to buy PVU.
With PancakeSwap, you can swap a variety of cryptocurrencies for PVU. For example, you can swap some of your Bitcoin or USDT for PVU to obtain your first 5 tokens.
Currently, PVU costs approximately $0.057 per token, so this is a very small starting investment to play Plant vs Undead.
Note that you also need a small amount of Binance Coin to begin playing Plant vs Undead. This is because PVU tokens are BEP20 tokens on the Binance Smart Chain. Therefore, transactions require paying BNB network fees, so you need some BNB in your wallet to cover this small cost.
3. Convert PVU to LE
Once you have your PVU, you need to exchange it for Light Energy so you can purchase starting tools and seeds for your farm.
Plant vs Undead has a built-in swapping system, so you can always turn your PVU tokens into LE tokens or vice versa. The swap rate changes depending on the value of PVU, but 5 PVU tokens is enough to get your farm started.
4. Create Your Farm
Now that you have some Light Energy, it’s time to set up your farm!
The first step is to claim your free plot of land. Once you launch the Plant vs Undead Farm game, you can claim a free plot of land in your Inventory tab.
Every Plant vs Undead player gets free land to start out with. However, you need to purchase tools to begin farming:
- Small Pot: You need pots to plant your first sunflower plants, which is what beginner players should use to generate Light Energy.
- Water: All plants need water to survive on your farm, and you need to water plants every day.
- Sunflower Sapling: This temporary plant yields 250 LE tokens over 72 hours. You need to water sunflowers twice in order for them to grow.
It’s worth noting that Plant vs Undead can be quite buggy, and the game is still in development.
For example, as a new player, I can’t purchase sunflower saplings at the moment or even find them in the shop. Overall, getting started is quite confusing, and there’s no obvious indicator that you even need to buy PVU on a DEX and then swap it for LE.
That said, once you have some LE, the process of starting a humble farm that generates extra Light Energy is pretty straightforward.
5. Harvest Light Energy
After 72 hours, the LE from your first sunflower plants is ready for harvesting. Clicking on a “harvest” icon obtains your LE. Your sunflower plants die afterwards, but with your new LE, you can begin expanding your farm and investing into new tools and seeds to yield even more Light Energy.
For example, players can purchase a greenhouse, which makes their plants impervious to winter and cold spells which are part of Plant vs Undead’s weather cycle.
You can also purchase a variety of plants that generate more LE, or use scarecrows to protect your individual plants from pesky crows that can sabotage your farm.
Overall, this aspect of the Plant vs Undead game is a fun farming simulator-type game where you gradually earn more LE tokens for improving your farm.
6. Explore The Marketplace
You use Light Energy to buy tools for your farm that help you earn more LE. But you need PVU tokens to shop on Plant vs Undead’s NFT marketplace.
The marketplace is also where the real fun begins. This is where you purchase plants from other players that you can use in the multiplayer version of the game to defeat undead hordes.
Plants have different levels of rarity and abilities, and class types include:
Plants are also quite unique in true tower-defense game fashion. Some plants drop bombs on undead enemies, while others are ranged plants that lower the armor and health of incoming undead.
Plants cost different amounts of PVU depending on rarity and market supply and demand. But like other play-to-earn crypto games, you’re buying and selling NFTs of in-game assets on this marketplace.
So, if you earn extremely rare plants that are worth a lot of PVU, you can always sell those plants later on for PVU and then swap your PVU for other crypto.
7. Play Against Other Players
Right now, the player-versus-player mode for Plant vs Undead isn’t available. The mode is coming in the future, but for now, the only way to play this game is to start and expand your farm.
Can You Make Money Playing Plan vs Undead?
The most exciting aspect of play-to-earn crypto games is that you’re earning NFTs that are actually worth something.
So, this begs the question: can you make money by playing Plant vs Undead?
Technically, you can if you obtain PVU and swap it for other cryptocurrencies or USDT on a DEX like PancakeSwap. However, you need a lot of PVU to generate significant income.
Right now, PVU token is worth approximately $0.057 USD. This means you need about 1,000 PVU tokens to earn over $50 of another crypto or stablecoin like USDT. Earning this amount of PVU tokens likely takes weeks or even months, especially as a brand new player who has to grow their farm from scratch.
That said, play-to-earn crypto games are extremely popular in countries where the U.S. dollar is extremely valuable and local currencies are inflated.
For example, play-to-earn crypto games are growing in popularity in the Philippines according to Binance, and NFT games are actually helping people increase their monthly income.
Is PVU Token A Good Investment?
At peak price in August 2021, PVU was worth almost $25 according to CoinMarketCap. But PVU hasn’t been above $1 since October 2021 and has essentially bottomed-out at around $0.05 per token.
A lot of this rapid price drop has to do with the hype falling off for the game.
As play-to-earn games like Axie Infinity had their tokens boom in price during late 2021, tokens like PVU were able to ride the wave as well and appreciate. Other games like Decentraland and The Sandbox also saw their respective tokens spike in price around this time.
We often see the same types of price increases for altcoins when Bitcoin and Ethereum have bull runs. Overall, this type of volatility is what makes investing in metaverse tokens and play-to-earn crypto tokens so risky but also potentially lucrative.
However, investing in PVU token is definitely on the riskier side out of all the play-to-earn crypto games.
More established games like Axie Infinity and Decentraland have also had large price dips in recent months. However, these games haven’t dropped in price nearly as much as Plant vs Undead’s PVU token.
Plant vs Undead also has numerous development issues currently. The delay of the PVP game mode and numerous changes to the earning and marketplace system have been drawbacks for the game. Not to mention, the beginner user experience is confusing, especially since Plant vs Undead splits its farming and PVP games across two portals.
In short, you can take a gamble on PVU tokens and invest in this game if you think more players will flock to the game in the future. But for now, it’s an extremely risky investment that’s just based on speculation.
The Bottom Line
The world of play-to-earn crypto games is extremely exciting for gamers and crypto investors alike. And even though games like Plant vs Undead have had a rocky roadmap, the more opportunities people have in this space to earn crypto rewards, the better.
That said, tokens like PVU are extremely risky investments. And there are still other exciting opportunities in crypto you can use to generate passive income.
For example, crypto savings accounts like BlockFi and Celsius let you generate yield with your crypto. And, you can always experiment with things like crypto staking to put your crypto to work to earn rewards.
In short, play games like Plant vs Undead if you want a fun and simple way to earn NFTs and explore the world of play-to-earn crypto games. But don’t be afraid to explore other games and income opportunities in the space since there are so many exciting projects out there.
Tom Blake is a personal finance writer with a passion for making money online, cryptocurrency and NFTs, investing, and the gig economy.