2011… ACTIVATE! Homefront

2011… ACTIVATE! Homefront

2011… ACTIVATE! HomefrontGo away 2010. You were rubbish. It’s now all about 2011, and the games we can’t wait to play. That’s why throughout the first couple of weeks of January I’m going to be going through some of the games I’m most looking forward to in the coming year. On this fine morn we’re taking a look at Homefront.

Homefront If Homefront turns out to be a case of hype over substance, then developers Kaos Studios only have themselves to blame. Name dropping the Half-Life franchise, calling out other shooters for ‘massacre fatigue’ – for a game that essentially uses the framework of the military shooter as its gameplay foundation, Homefront talks a big game. But if it lives up to its promise, it could be one of the biggest blockbuster shooters of 2011.

What we love about Homefront is that, unlike the dirge that makes up most of the shooter market, it actually has a proper point of difference. Several in fact.

The first is the story, written by John Milius of Apocalypse Now and Red Dawn fame, which focuses on the (admittedly batshit insane) premise that North Korea has rapidly increased its reach and invaded the US. Yes, it’s silly, but said premise has allowed Kaos Studios to create a game universe that plays with our concepts of the familiar to dramatic effect. Homefront is a game that takes place in a bastardised, torn down, broken America – and the development team has used that premise to create an environment dripping in detail and alive with context.

From what we’ve seen so far, Kaos Studios has done a remarkable job of creating a believable setting in which every resource is pooled towards defeating an all powerful invader with everyday tools at hand. An early demo showed the American resistance creating electricity via an elaborate set of machines operated by a man using a Stairmaster. It’s clever stuff – and the kind of detail that makes Homefront’ unlikely premise feel real.

The setting also allows for a slightly different style of gameplay – one that depends on guerilla tactics and operations ran by a resistance team who are far from the mad, mega-bearded, military experts you’re used to embodying. These guys are rookies – regular citizens. It’s a refreshing change to be sure, but we’re yet to be fully convinced that said change will result in a game that feels fundamentally different from your Call of Dutys and your Medal of Honors.

At the end of the day, Homefront will sell – it’s backed by dollars and a team uber-confident in its clever doomsday scenario – but Homefront’s ability to match up to the early hype and bombast will no doubt be dependent on the game’s ability to transend its sub-genre and be as innovative and fresh as Kaos Studios hopes it will become.

Here’s hoping…


  • The market is saturated with FPS games, and there’s plenty more on the conveyor belt.

    That said, I am incredibly excited by Homefront.

    Yes, there are some generic looking features to the game, and the premise is another blockbuster-style balls out romp, but with very strong presentation in the fashion of Half-life first person storytelling, I’m really looking forward to this one.

    • Yeah I wonder what will become of the games industry when people realise they are just playing the same game over and over again with only very minor differences in slightly different levels.. they might as well all just be DLC…

      I haven’t even bought the latest Call of Duty or Medal of Honor cause after playing them for 2 minutes at mates places I was bored..

      • I just realised that seems a little harsh..

        I can’t believe I actually typed it but its how first person shooters make me feel these days.. and I used to be one of the first people slapping down money for each new Battlefield game/add on.. Maybe its that they all try to be so real, they just end up looking and feeling the same? OR its that they are less fun as there are so many getting all my mates to buy the same one on the same hardware these days is almost impossible.. i don’t know..

        Its all down to a games story these days for me.. I guess I’ll wait and see how good you all say the story line is in this one before giving it a look!

  • I only just checked out Homefront yesterday and I gotta admit, it looks pretty awesome.
    That said, Im more interested in Brink. Cannot wait for that game.

  • Hell yeah I want cheezy-poofs!

    Seriously looking forward to this game.

    Also, I don’t think bonmbast is a word.

  • The real clincher for this game will be the local server set up. If the dedicated servers here in Australia work as they should, this title will take off.

    No doubt

    No doubt in my mind

  • Of interest, yes.
    So little has been shown of the game though. All the gameplay footage revolves around the one level setting of suburbia-gone-to-shit. Curious to see what else is on offer in terms of terrain.

  • Yeah, i’ll definately bve following this one.

    I won’t get it until well after release though, so i know if it lives up to the hype or not..

  • The first trailer of this game that showed how korea rose to power influenced me to buy this game. best gameplay trailer i have ever seen. that was some powerful and well made sh*t!

  • Amused that with all the accusations Tomorrow When The War Began got about it being a Red Dawn rip-off, not a word is uttered about the copying from the TWTWB movie.
    (Asian invaders anyone?)

  • I love Red Dawn, and appreciate a ‘rip-off-game’ of it. Games based on movies are boring. Homefront has a unique storyline based on the premise of RD. As for it being bat shit insane, the movie had the US being invaded by Cubans. Now that’s just silly.

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