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Homefront (PC)

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£4.99 Best Offer by: simplygames.com See more offers
3 Reviews

Genre: Action & Shooter / PEGI Age Rating: 15+ / Published 2011-03-18 by THQ / Release date: 2011-03-18

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    3 Reviews
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      13.01.2012 00:25

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      Overall, a good game but with a few setbacks.

      Homefront is a typical PC game you can install in a lazy-filled day and play before you hit the bed. If you are expecting a lot more from a game like this, then i would probably pass this game. It should be noted that this game is pretty short, and that can make you a little frustrated.

      But just because it is short, does not mean that it is a bad game. I personally love playing shooting games, and i am used to the fact that i find campaigns very short. however, i always judge games based on the quality and not based on the fact on how long it is. To be honest, this game left a smile on my face multiple times.

      The one thing that truly held my interest through the game was both the plot and the characters. I really enjoyed the plot, and i loved the characters as they always grew on you.

      There are short breaks from the shooting action, and you do little missions that employ aircraft. these little things always add enjoyment to the game. Although the multiplayer aspect of the game did not quite grow on me, i'm sure some people found that aspect very fun.

      I would recommend Homefront to people if they want to pick up a quick game to play.

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      09.10.2011 10:38
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      Good game but not great - 7/10

      Homefront on the PC is a FPS (first person shooter) brought to us by KAOS and THQ with a player age rating of 15+. The game is based on a unified Korea who launched an all out attack on America in 2027. Is Homefront over the top? Maybe but Homefront is something totally different. There are no big set-pieces or large scale battles here. You'll be fighting your enemies in abandoned cul-de-sacs, seized warehouses, and compounds. Homefront doesn't shy away from over the top acts of violence, grisly scenes of human carnage, or other realities of war. All of this goes a long way towards making the world of Homefront feel real to a degree.

      Single player mode to me felt too short though which was a real shame but in the multiplayer option it opens the game right up for some fun online gameplay. While the actual modes of Homefront's multiplayer offering are limited, I still found myself lost in how much fun I was having with it. The two primary modes - Ground Control and Team Deathmatch - are based on old ideas but feel fun and fresh. This is largely due to the way these matches are scored, since gaining experience points as a team is more important than individual kill counts or other statistics. It's also due to the awesome maps that convey the crumbling, hopeless feel of an occupied war zone. There's an awful lot of customization in multiplayer, and plenty of accessories to mess around with. You can use all of your basic FPS weaponry in multiplayer as well as drive an assortment of vehicles, from Humvees and LAVs to Scout and Attack Helicopters. Everything you do has "Battle Points" (or BP) associated with it, which is used to level your character up, as well as to unlock new weapons and the like. BP can even be spent mid-battle to give your character a flak vest, an RPG, or a number of other items in your inventory.

      I would recommend Homefront to any multiplayer enthusiast but for hardcore die hard FPS gamers I would opt for other hard hitting game titles on the market. Could have been better and really stood out.

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      22.03.2011 18:10
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      A great multiplayer shooter, shame about the singleplayer bit.

      HOMEFRONT is a first-person shooter by developer KAOS Interactive and it is published by THQ. It is rated '15' for 'Strong violence and language'.

      Gameplay

      HOMEFRONT is split into two sections, the singleplayer and the multiplayer. I shall leave the best until last and start with the singleplayer.

      The singleplayer is HOMEFRONT is short and slightly uninteresting. However, it did have considerable potential. The game takes place in Korea-occupied America, after North and South Korea joined up to make a Korean Union. The game places you in the shoes of an American Guerrilla warrior and decides you're going to fight off all the Koreans. I've been told that the storyline is a lot like the film 'Red Dawn' which would be unsurprising as this film is written by the same person as wrote 'Red Dawn'.

      The game starts with a speech from a Korean general and a bus ride. This results in one of the most truly shocking parts in the game as Koreans shoot a child's parents as the (around five year old) child is forced to watch. After the shooting, he runs up to his dead parents screaming and crying. It can be seen as a very distressing scene, but there aren't too many more like it. The rest of the game tries too hard to create sadness, and it becomes overused and, in turn, falls flat on its face.

      The actual shooting in the singleplayer is nothing to be admired either. It takes on many similarities from the more recent Call of Duty games in that you are a very small squad and you're against what is practically an entire army, which makes you and your buddies some kind of super-soldier. Well, you're not a super-soldier. The games designated team-mates are though, as they advanced directly into enemy fire, they are invulnerable. The enemies and you, however, take only a few shots. Oddly, you'd expect such quick kills to make the combat more frenetic and fast-paced, but it doesn't really. You have to take cover a lot to avoid being killed and the enemies just hide in their positions taking pot-shots at you for a lot of the time. Of course, that's a smart tactic for AI, but it doesn't really help the game be that much fun, especially when they're shooting you and they're almost entirely concealed (even the barrel of their gun, confusingly).

      Later on in the campaign, it does pick up - but the campaign is only five hours long, so I wouldn't really recommend getting this game just for the singleplayer aspect.

      ---
      Multiplayer however is a different story. Even though everything in the multiplayer is effectively stolen from other, similar first-person shooter games: it still seems able to retain a reasonable amount of fun: the two notable 'inspirations' are Battlefield and Call of Duty.

      The game centres around XP Development, as you would expect from a multiplayer war-first person shooter. It's awfully generic, and yet it doesn't stop being fun. You don't unlock so many weapons so quickly that weaponry doesn't feel special, and you don't unlock so rarely that your efforts seem entirely futile. KAOS really got their pacing on the levelling system quite right.

      The multiplayer gameplay is alright for the most part, however, at the time of release (at the time of issue they've said they will be fixing this issue soon), snipers are incredibly overpowered, a single shot to the leg can kill a player and it can turn a fun experience into a downright irritating experience. Thankfully, they have said they are fixing this issue and hopefully it will make the multiplayer a lot more fun.

      Unlike Call of Duty and other inspirations, HOMEFRONT doesn't make use of killstreaks (getting many kills in a row without dying) to reward players, but rather a Battlepoints system. These 'Battle Points' will pile up over time, so you can use your perks that you selected before the game begun. This is a very good idea, because it means even players that are disadvantaged in hardware or skill still have their turn to have a little bit of fun with their kill-streaks.

      In HOMEFRONT, ammunition is far from scarce, and you'll never seem to run out of it in a single life unless you're firing it into a brick wall and attempting to make it all fall out. This is due to the fact that 'killing' another player takes only three or four bullets from a standard assault rifle or sub-machine gun. Unlike the singleplayer, this does make the combat fast and frenetic, and it's really good fun trying to face off against four enemies against just you, knowing that you'll probably loose anyway. But if you win this fight, it's a really satisfying experience. The three to four bullet killing was a very good decision by the developers, and it does make the game feel much more fun that it likely would have been without it.

      There are also spawnable vehicles, also bought with 'Battle Points', and you pick which vehicle you want just before you spawn, so there is one left for you, guaranteed, because you spawn in it.

      The game is very careful in making all the weapons feel different, but without overpowering specific weapons to infinity, a feat that many developers cannot perform properly. The hitboxes are accurate, and therefore shooting feels really precise and sharp and being on the wrong end of a gun feels dangerous.

      The multiplayer was by far, the best element of the game, as the singleplayer was decidedly weak.


      Graphics

      Homefront uses the Unreal 3 engine, and it is by far one of the most beautiful uses of the engine yet. Shadows dance on the battlefield, water ripples out from your feet as you trudge through it and lens flare appears on your screen when you are looking at the sun. All of touches sound tiny, but they are all very, very important to the games graphics, as it just makes it feel more cinematic and, in a way, more real (even though the feeling of reality is never really achieved because of the nature of the game).

      More notably, the game has very well designed textures, really nice motion blur effects and nice depth of field effects for the weapons, all of which (apart from of course the textures) can be turned off in the system settings menu.

      The games setting of American suburbia is well realised, and it looks really good and it makes you feel like you're actually in the area that the game takes place in (which you might be, if you live in America).

      The graphics are far better than the tired Unreal engine generally produces.


      Value for Money and Longevity

      The value for money on this game is fair, I guess. If you're buying this game just for the singleplayer, you will feel ripped off, but if you like to play multiplayer games similar to Battlefield or Call of Duty for quite a few hours, you'll probably get your money's worth. I bought the game, and received it on Friday, and have since played six hours (for the sake or reviewing, of course) and it has yet to feel samey, tired or boring.

      The game doesn't actually have that many game modes or that many maps, but I expect that more will be released via either a free patch or paid DLC (only time will tell), but the maps that the game comes with are really just good fun to play for quite a few hours, even though there is only Team Deathmatch and Ground Control (which strikes a fair bit of resemblance to Call of Duty's 'Domination' game mode)
      So, if you like multiplayer fun, than this is the game for you, and it won't leave you wanting your money back.
      Optimization


      System Requirements

      OS: Windows XP/Vista/7
      Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo @ 2.4 Ghz / AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600+
      Memory: 2 Gb
      Hard Drive: 10 Gb free
      Video Memory: 256 Mb
      Video Card: nVidia GeForce 7900 / ATI Radeon X1900
      Sound Card: DirectX Compatible
      DirectX: 9.0c
      Keyboard
      Mouse
      DVD ROM Drive
      My laptop (testing machine) specs

      OS: Windows 7
      Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo @ 2.2GHz
      Memory: 4GB
      Video Memory: 512mb
      Video Card: Nvidia G105M (it's not as good as the 7900 it requires)
      Sound Card: DirectX Compatible
      DirectX: 11
      Keyboard: check
      Mouse: check
      DVD-ROM: check (but you can buy it from STEAM and not need this, because it downloads from the internet).


      How did it run

      Since my computer doesn't actually meet the minimum requirements for Homefront, it ran quite well. The framerate, at times dipped into un-play-ability before their patch, but after that patch, the framerate rarely fell below 10 (which could be considered unplayable, but it rarely even goes down that low).

      An average FRAPS benchmark shows me that the lowest framerate the game ever went to after the patch and latest graphics drivers was 9 frames per second (ouch), the maximum frame-rate was 32 (nice) and the average gameplay framerate was 22 (fair enough). For a computer that didn't even meet the system requirements, that's quite a feat, especially as some games would just plain out refuse to run.

      However, statistics from my friend who has the following specs

      OS: Windows 7
      Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo @ 3.16GHz
      RAM: 4GB RAM
      Video Card: Nvidia Geforce 8600GT
      Video Memory: 256mb

      reports that the game run at an average of 50-60fps on Medium/High settings. Showing that this game can be run very well only a few scrapes above the minimum requirements, which is an outstanding optimization feat.
      ---

      In case anyone was wondering, it was my graphics card that was the bottleneck in this situation - the game maxed out the GPU to its maximum potential consistently, but the CPU usage was held back, barely scraping 50-60% usage at the best of times.


      Content Watch

      HOMEFRONT is rated '15' and it's a first person shooter. There are violent elements, and these are described below.

      Violence

      There are many firefights through the game, hitting an enemy causes a brief blood splurt. There is no remnants of bloods left on the wall or floor (usually) after they have been killed.

      There is a knife action, but it is brief and the actual kill often appears to have happened off screen.

      You cannot mutilate enemies at all.

      Shooting dead bodies does not cause post-mortem damage.

      In perhaps the strongest sequence in the game, a child's parents are shot, as the child is forced to watch. The child runs up to their bodies crying and screaming after they have been shot. The scene is quite sad, and an in-game character comments on how horrible it is. The scene is to make you realise how bad the Korean occupation has gotten. The scene, however, is very brief (it only lasts about eight seconds, which is not really enough time to let tension build. There is also a lot of carnage surrounding it, which takes some of the devastation and impact off the scene. You see the bodies briefly, but there is no bloody aftermath.
      There are scenes involving mass burials that some may find disturbing.

      Language

      Strong language throughout. Including 'f***' and 'sh*t'.


      Content Conclusion

      HOMEFRONT is rarely more impacting than similar games such as Call of Duty: Black Ops, and I think that a thirteen or fourteen year old would probably be fine playing the game, but of course, use your judgement and don't let your child play the game is they might be disturbed by the nature of the scenes or content.


      Game Conclusion

      HOMEFRONT has a really quite weak singleplayer component, but the multiplayer certainly makes up for it. It's very similar to Call of Duty, apart from the fact that it's actually well optimized for the computers that it said it will run on (and a little below as well) , and it is a blast to play. I highly recommend HOMEFRONT for anyone in need of a good bit of fast and frenetic multiplayer gaming. However, I advise those who relish in story to stay away.

      I give this game four out of five, for its brilliant multiplayer component and good optimization. Next time, they should improve on the singleplayer.

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