I’ve been waiting eagerly for Homefront
the first person shooter developed by Kaos Studios and published by
THQ, to come out for several reasons. First, the storyline written by
John Milius (Apocalypse Now
Conan the Barbarian
The Wind and the Lion
tv series, and Red Dawn
is incredibly intriguing. It is the year 2027 and over the last 13
years, America declined in power while North Korea rose in strength and
forcibly annexed pretty much the entire Pacific Rim. The Greater Korean
Republic has attacked the United States and now occupies this
once-proud country. The gamer plays as a pivotal member of the
Resistance, who is fighting to expel the commie horde from the good
The second reason is that I remember the Cold War and grew up during
it. I was born in 1970 and remember vividly of the US facing the Soviet
Union during the 1980s while the threat of nuclear armageddon hovered
over everybody’s heads. Games or movies that ask the
“what if?” questions of what could happen if the
USA lost or if total war broke out have always fascinated me. Plus,
I’m a huge fan of first person shooters since I first played
the shareware version of Doom
The face of the enemy.
To that end, Homefront
depicts the foreign occupation of America and the player is cast in the
role of freedom fighter. Will Truth, Justice, and the American Way
prevail or will the commie hordes be victorious?
For clarification purposes, this game was reviewed on the Xbox 360.
is rated M for Mature and in intended for audiences 17 and older. The
game has Blood, Strong Language, and Violence.
On the whole, the gameplay for Homefront
is pretty average for a shooter. The layout of the controls is similar
to other games in the genre. You are armed with two weapons and have
the ability to carry some grenades and other special items. During your
missions, you can swap out weapons with the weapons dropped from killed
There are a total of seven chapters in Homefront
broken into a number of missions. The missions are rather linear in
nature and don’t allow for a great deal of flexibility. While
you do have companions with you, they are useless. Once you pop your
head up, you will become target number one from enemy soldiers. Like in
other shooters, there are times when you can control a vehicle, such as
a helicopter or armored unit.
While the gameplay is linear and unremarkable, I found that the
missions were varied and fun to play. The biggest flaw with the game is
that the single player campaign is incredibly short. Most hardcore
gamers can finish the campaign in five hours. This is way too short for
an AAA title and incredibly disappointing.
Your companions will provide
zero cover while you try to remote-control this vehicle.
On the plus side, the storyline of the game is incredibly compelling.
You will be hooked into the world setting from the very beginning. If
you’re an American, you will definitely feel the emotional
impact of fighting for the Resistance against the Korean invaders. You
will undergo missions that will take you through forced labor camps,
you’ll see Korean soldiers executing civilians and dumping
them into mass graves, and you’ll deal with unscrupulous
outlaws that will kill you just as quickly as they would kill the
Korean occupiers. The whole spectrum of human behavior will be
displayed for you from those who want to help you, American civilians
who just want to be left alone and have accepted the occupation, and
those who actively collaborate with the enemy.
On the whole, I give the gameplay a C+ rating. While the gameplay is
your standard shooter fare and brings nothing new to the table, the
storyline is incredible and helps elevate the game. I would give the
story an A+, but the linear nature of the missions and the incredibly
short single player campaign lower the score considerably.
The graphics for Homefront
are on the average of shooters that are a year or two old. The graphics
are well done depicting the destroyed suburbia and rural farmlands of
America, but they are not cutting edge. They do help draw you into the
world of an occupied America, but don’t expect anything
What do burning commies smell
like in the morning? They smell like...victory.
The sound in the game is extremely well done. The voice acting is very
good and doesn’t distract you from the setting. Combat is
fast and furious with the whine of bullets flying past you, the rumble
of a tank closing in on your position, the shouts and cries of the
enemy soldiers, and hearing the jet engines of a fighter coming towards
you is not a happy thing. On the whole, the sounds do immerse you into
the game experience.