It’s important to realize a few things ahead of playing the game. The first is that there is no way that you are going to repel the entire Korean army in just one game, this is just one story in a much larger campaign/brand so don’t expect a lot of closure at the end of the game.
The second is to realize Kaos isn’t out to break any new ground in terms of game play. Their main focus is how the story is presented. I say this because the gameplay is about average for a modern First Person Shooter with a few cool small things tacked on. This is a nice way of saying most of the action is kind of generic. There are a few new things sprinkled through the game, like the ability to control the remote controlled Goliath, but the majority of the combat is the standard stop and pop combat we’ve been playing for years. If you’re looking for invention over convention, then you’re going to be disappointed in Homefront.
Where Kaos is trying to innovate though is through the presentation of the game and the cinematic qualities of the game, which is done through the world they created and the writing that supports it.
The world that Kaos has crafted is an incredibly believable vision of an America that has been conquered and destroyed. In this world, suburban America has gone from being a place to hide from the city to a place to hide from the occupying forces. Lumber yards and mega stores are now supply depots for enemies and nothing has been left unscathed by the invaders. It’s not entirely perfect, but it’s one of the better realized game worlds in recent memory. It doesn’t help that they managed to work a few familiar brand names into the game, which is either good immersion, product placement, or both.
It’s also worth noting that the game features some of the best explosions in a game in recent memory. When big things go boom it’s a treat to both the eyes and the ears. I know that’s important for some people so I’ll just put that out there.
The writing is solid as Hollywood screenwriter John Milius is the man behind the keyboard for Homefront. Mr. Milius was the key writer behind Red Dawn, Conan, and a wide variety of other movies
and he brings a high level of craftsmanship to the game.
With the exception of a few odd lines of dialog that involves some of the products that are tied to product placements in the game (“Get the shotgun from behind the counter of the White Castle”) the writing and dialogue is fairly solid. The game does rely on some old Hollywood cliches of making the bad guys “too bad” without providing any kind of context or reasoning behind their actions, and the characters are a little cliche at times, but it does work for the most part.
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