Hero Plants were a game mechanic and variation of plants that were only seen in Plants vs. Zombies: Journey to the West. They acted the same as their normal counterparts (except Iron Man Nut) that could be moved by the player anywhere (except for dips in the earth at Outsmart the Fire Child and Battle of the Ox-Demon levels) at any time. Once the Hero Plant itself was upgraded to a specific level, they would also have different special abilities and a special skill that would activate automatically once charged, similar to the anger and Plant Food system in Plants vs. Zombies: All Stars. However, the player could only use one Hero Plant in each level, and the Hero Plant would appear on the 5*3 square of the player's lawn immediately once the level started. When the Hero Plant was eaten, it is absent for some time on the lawn, after which it appears in the same place as originally.
Each Hero Plant could be leveled up by earning experience when being used in levels. By each time it leveled up, the plant would gain skill points (displayed by leaves) that could be used to upgrade the abilities and skill of that plant, which increased the probability and effectiveness. Some skills and abilities could only be upgraded once the Hero Plant reached a certain level
Upgrading Hero Plants
To upgrade the Hero Plants, player must click on the silver statue of Monk Flower in main menu. А menu of heroes opens, in which player can see the level of the hero, his parameters and available improvements. When the Hero Plant is present on the lawn, it increases its experience, gradually earning a new level. When getting a new level, a wave emanates from the hero, killing all the zombies on the screen, and the player receives the skill points necessary to improve one of the skills.
Each hero has five skills. The first two require one skill point to open and first upgrade and two to further upgrades. The next two are two for opening and first updating and four for amplification. The fifth skill is superpower. It can be opened only at the tenth level and requires 4 points to open and 8 to improve. The maximum level of the hero is 20, and the maximum number of points is 80, which is exactly enough for a full leveling of all skills. The player can pay for in order to instantly get a level, and for 20 gems he can reset all skills, returning their full cost in skill points
List of Hero Plants
Iron Man Nut
Monkey King Peashooter
- All Hero Plants have a maximum level of 20.
- There are two heroes based off of Wall-nut; the Iron Man Nut, and the Nut Wujing.
- Iron Man Nut is the only Hero Plant that is not based on a character that appears in Journey to the West
- If a Hero Plant lands on top of a normal plant, the normal plant is disabled until the Hero Plant moves away.
- There are several unimplemented hero plants from the game's unused data:
- A Snow Pea hero based on the White Dragon Horse, Xuanzang's Mount on the trip to the west；
- A Tall-nut hero based on Li Jing,a deity known as Nezha's father;
- A Blover hero based on The Princess of Iron Fan,a demon encountered by the protagonists in the Flaming Mountain,as the Ox-Demon's wife and the Fire Child's mother;
- And a Cattail hero based on Avalokiteśvara/Kuanyin，a Bodhisattva who founded the protagonists in the first place and persuaded them to go to the west,as well as helping them several times during the trip.