Reader Review: Homefront

Reader Review: Homefront

Despite middling reviews, Homefront has still managed to shift an impressive amount of units. Aron Quigley was one of those folks that took the plunge on the game, and now he’s here with an impressive reader review.

Thanks to Madman – the best written Reader Review receives a selection of the latest DVDs and Blu-rays from their selection.

Take it away Aron

‘What if?’ is a question often raised in games these days. What if we were living in a post-apocalyptic wasteland? What if man were living amongst alien races in outer space? The question Homefront raises is ‘What if the USA was crippled and overrun by a more dominant force?’ Set in the year 2027, when America has been invaded and controlled by a united North and South Korea, you are an American citizen drawn into the battle to re-claim your homeland. The question we ask though, is ‘what if Homefront was good enough to rival other FPSes?’

Loved Story and Setting: Homefront’s drawcard is its story, penned by the author responsible for Red Dawn and Apocalypse Now. You play a helicopter pilot hijacked from captivity and teaming up with American resistance fighters. You aren’t a super soldier or aided with military equipment and backup, you’re just a man with a gun, trying to fight back against invading terror.

You really feel like you’re a small group in the middle of a larger war. While you get more involved towards the game’s explosive climax, the most part of the game is spent trying to sabotage and survive. There’s action, emotion, twists and turns, and generally the story works well if not for the abrupt ending. Collecting informative newspapers provides interesting backstory and fleshes out the world that’s going on around you.

Multiplayer… Concept and Potential: A mix between Call of Duty and Battlefield, Homefront offers large-scale battles filled with perks, upgradeable weapons and vehicle combat. This is the game’s strongest point, offering tons of customisation and great ‘capture and hold’ and deathmatch options. You earn Battle Points as you kill and capture, allowing you to purchase upgrades on the fly like Flak Jackets and RPGs; though saving your points can net you helicopters and tanks to wreak havoc with. It’s really well done, if only it weren’t for…

Hated Multiplayer…. Technical Issues: At time of writing the multiplayer is still crippled with bugs. Sure, we have dedicated servers in Australia, but finding a game with anything but a red connection is nigh on impossible. Lag is through the roof, and there are times when you can kill an enemy only to have them run another ten feet before dying. At one point I was killed and enjoyed watching another player run around for three minutes before eventually respawning. It’s something that is being fixed, but the problems are unfortunately turning many people away.

Unpolished/Short: Yes, the campaign is short. 5 hours short. But the real letdown is the general lack of polish. It looks three years old, with murky textures and a general lack of sheen over the whole game. Maybe we’ve been too blessed with all the Mass Effects, Uncharteds and Call of Duties, but Homefront’s visuals leave a lot to be desired.

Homefront is tough to recommend. The story and multiplayer definitely should be experienced, but it’s technical problems are a turnoff. When the severs are running as intended and we get the full multiplayer experience, it’s one to check out.


  • Top Revirew mate, I didn’t know Homefront was an FPS till I read this – for some reason I imagined it as an RTS, C&C styles.

    5 hours is really too little, and if the multiplayer is as bad as you say, I think I’ll be saving my money from this one.

  • Lag with multiplayer? really? Yeah I got red bars a lot, but never did I actually notice any lag on any of the dedicated servers.

  • I finally got it from OzGameShop on Monday… I’m playing on xbox, and I’m really liking it.

    As Aron said, this game is visually unappealing… it’s not as pretty as Bulletstorm or MW2 (I thought it looked a lot like Black Ops to be honest), it’s probably the worst I’ve seen the unreal engine look.
    It sells the resistance feel by limiting the ammo in guns (during single player). It makes it difficult to stick to a rifle you like because ammo is almost eternaly low.
    Perhaps, because I’m not an American, the story didn’t grab me as much as it could have (and I’d love to play Homefront: Australia)
    Movement speed is a bit naf, it’s like treading through molasis.

    Multiplayer is almost everything I want.
    Big numbers on small maps, Slightly slower than CoD… but faster than Battlefield.
    However, with draw distances that long… some changes need to be made. Bullets need ‘drop’ and travel time.

    I’m loving it, but it is truely a flawed beast.

    • I should say, a few patches and 2 to 3 hours of DLC campaign expansion and we’d be on a bloody good game.

      I think THQ addressed the red bars thing in a comment on the patches they’re working on… from what I recall, the bars are showing red in error; they should be green.

      I didn’t notice any great lag, but I thought enemies stayed on the mini-map a little too long after dying.

      • “I should say, a few patches and 2 to 3 hours of DLC campaign expansion and we’d be on a bloody good game.”

        This is the part that frustrated me the most. The ending scene, if not the entire game is nothing more then a big arrow pointing to a distant object that will cost me ANOTHER $70, and jaded as I am, I cant help but think that they’re going to stretch this over a trilogy.

        • Don’t be jaded… it is happening.
          Danny Bilson has said that they plan to make it into a franchise.

  • A friend dropped this by unannounced this morning. Installed, updated, hated…

    Terrible game from visually to design and gameplay. Pathetic.

    The only decent thing here is the story and even that has major holes…

    Anyway, nuff said.

  • I beat the single-player in about 3-4 hours (on normal, or whatever it’s called). I appreciated what they tried to do with the story, but it was mostly just shock-factor coupled with sub-par graphics and meh gameplay.

    Another (possible) failing with single-player is the difficulty curve, it’s just too up and down – but maybe this fits in with the resistance setting.

    I wish I could have tried multi-player but server browser would not work and when it did, failed to connect to servers.

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