PC ONLINE GAME - A Homefront Preview
Wednesday, February 23 2011 @ 10:30 PM GMT
Contributed by: VRANDAS
Homefront will be one of those shooters that's firmly in the Call of Duty mould.
by David Brown
The plot sees the North Koreans beginning to dominate the world. Regardless of how far fetched you might think this is, it does tap into the whole invasion narrative that's so popular in the US.
Evoking such televisual classics as Chuck Norris's Invasion USA and the hyper-nationalist Red Dawn. Self-described fascist John Milius, and the creator of Red Dawn, consulted on the story and you'll be able to see his influence right from the start when the ludicrously vicious Korean forces butcher a mother and father in front of their crying child.
However, an interesting potential twist is the way Homefront is reversing the traditional Vietnam roles of the US and their oriental foes. This time, you'll be making your way through US tunnels in the dark. Perhaps it's unintentional, and it would be interesting to see whether such a nationalist as Milius is willing to acknowledge the tactics used by the Vietnamese in the war, praising them by proxy by having the US renegades here adopt very similar ideas
Homefront Multiplayer Preview Video
Moving past the potentially (and perhaps deliberately) inflammatory portrayal of the fiendish Red menace, we'll most likely be seeing a fairly standard trek through thankfully less familiar environs. It's these more interesting settings, like a typical US suburb and the parking lot of a DIY store, that'll be the most appealing thing to shooter veterans, tired of the sandy deserts of the Middle East.
It evokes Half-Life 2 in some ways, with automated sentry turrets that instantly brink back memories of City 17. Indeed, developers Kaos have stated on the record that Valve's seminal game has been an inspiration. It's mostly because of the whole revolutionary forces versus shiny armour-wearing near-future soldiers thing, but also there are similarities in the way the game flows, with less of an emphasis on huge set-piece moments and more on attempting to add a more seamless flow between smaller objectives.
Kaos could still do with addressing a few things, realistically. For instance, it's not going to go down well if the current glitching issues, where if you were to collide with certain characters or bits of scenery, you'd magically be shot a couple of feet into the air. Kind of like there was an auto-vault system in place, where you'd automatically hurdle objects, but one that decides to launch you above your cover into a hail of bullets. It's something that there's still time for Kaos to address.
There's probably no opportunity to add the ability to lean, which is very noticeable by its absence, although thankfully there's an option you don't see very often lurking in the main menu – a slide to adjust the FOV (field of view).
There's not much else to say in hands-on terms. It feels just like you'd expect a modern shooter, with all sorts of gun fetishism and a solid combat engine. Of most interest is the setting as has been mentioned, and for all the qualms we have about fixable glitches and strict linearity, it's this that we'll carry away from the preview code. Whether they fix the issues we've raised, we can but hope.