Reviews: Homefront

Great new I.P

Homefront is a new I.P developed by Kaos Studios and published by THQ, detailing an invasion by North Korea. As far-fetched as that sounds, the development team managed to develop a cool, unlikely but plausible backstory showing North Korea's rise and America's fall. The main reason this troper bought the game was due to the story, and the story doesn't disappoint. This game actually shows the true colors of a brutal occupation. Even though hostile enemy invading the U.S has been shown before, like the Russians invading in Modern Warfare 2, but whereas Modern Warfare 2 only shows military vs. military, Homefront shows civilians getting beaten, families separated, parents gunned down in front of their children, and bodies being dumped into mass graves (There's even an instance where you have to hide in the mass grave to escape being shot). The story even goes into the race riots that would happen should such a war ever happen, and you even spend a fifth of the game fighting racist survivalists. The main problem with the story, however, is that it's VERY short. It clocks at around 5-7 hours, and if you rush through it, you can probably beat it in about 3-4 hours. The story seems to end rather abruptly, too, with a cliffhanger. It's too bad, because the story is very good. Luckily, Homefront sold decently well (Despite mixed reviews), and a sequel was already planned before the first game was even released, so the story might be concluded in Homefront 2.

Gameplay wise, it's pretty much standard shooter controls. You aim down your sights to fire your gun more accurately. You can sprint, jump, knife etc. The game does go out of its way to make it feel like you're a civilian fighter rather than a Bad Ass Super Soldier. First off, you're only given a few magazines of ammo maximum. Unlike in Call of Duty where you can carry up to 300 AK-47 bullets, you can only carry a maximum of 90 here. Recoil also seems to be higher in this game, and health is lower (though this is balanced by a faster regeneration). These small tweeks does help shake things up a bit to keep the gameplay from being the same cliched gameplay we're seeing in every military shooter these days.

Overall, Homefront is a fun game, with a great story, and fun gameplay. This troper highly recommends picking this up.

Don't buy this for the singleplayer

I was looking forward to this game quite a lot - the marketing got me hooked and the story seemed interesting, especially since they marketed it in such a way that it seemed like they were focusing on single-player rather than multiplayer, which too few shooters do these days. Upon renting the game, I was almost immediately disappointed. The story is almost shockingly over-the-top and cliched, veering into unintentional self-parody at times. The Koreans are so unrealistically, cartoonishly, and above all pointlessly evil it's almost comedic. The characters are bland, unlikable, and incredibly dumb. The dialogue is hackneyed and annoying. But that's just the story, I haven't started on the actual 'game' part of the game yet, and sadly things are no better there either. The singleplayer campaign is not a game so much as it is a slightly-interactive movie. Everything is scripted, and literally every single mission plays out exactly the same way every time, giving it a replay value of effectively zero. Invisible walls are absolutely everywhere, herding the player down a narrow, linear path from scripted event to scripted event, ensuring that the players only do exactly what the devs want them to be doing at that particular moment in the game and see exactly what the devs want them to see. You aren't even permitted to sprint unless you're in certain areas; the button will simply stop working until you get into these invisible 'sprint zones'. The guns feel and sound cheap and fake-y, with muted sounds and almost no recoil to speak of. Your NPC allies are incompetent, which ends up not really mattering because the enemy AI is absolutely horrible, and because your character regenerates health so quickly that there's really little point in taking cover or trying to avoid enemy fire. Fortunately, you won't have to deal with all of this crap for long, because the singleplayer campaign is amazingly short, four hours at absolute most.

In summary, don't believe the marketing. This game's singleplayer campaign was quite obviously tacked on as an afterthought, and the lack of any real effort in its development is almost tangible. If you're considering purchasing this game for the singleplayer experience, heed my advice - DON'T.

Overrated and cliche Co D clone.

Even though Homefront is a new I.P. it does nothing new or interesting gameplay wise and story wise is completely bland, and while the story does a good job of showing the Americans being capable of being equally monstrous it still does nothing interesting. All of this might have been avoided if the devs focused on single player, but they instead focused multiplayer, despite the fact that marketing focused on single player, which was stupid, since people that like multiplayer games will look for something else and especially because there are not enough single player focused FPS games out there, so that was likely a MASSIVE market they completely ignored. And frankly multiplayer isn't that good either.

The characters are all cliches, there's the black leader who dies, the angry one, the humane one, the token enemy minority and the protagonist. The game had a good intro and first level but then EVERYTHING falls flat. There's also the villain Colonel Jeong but he just disappears early on after he's done being "intimidating". Also, did I mention there's a doomed Hometown (the resistance hideout, not the actual town it's located in)?

Also, the ending's shit, do you liberate Colorado? Nope. Do you even liberate a single town? Nope. Do you kill the villain? Nope, he disappeared. So what DO you manage to do? You get some fuel tankers across a bridge, that's it. Oh, and the angry one sacrifices himself, so at least we don't ever have to see him again in a sequel.

All in all it's a boring, cliched game with boring, cliched characters and a boring cliched plot with all the emotion of a bucket with a face painted on it, and no amount of crying children can ever change that.