So I picked up Homefront recently despite the average reviews, mainly because I was intrigued by the setting I guess.
Now I have to say I’m glad I did, don’t get me wrong this game has it’s problems and I can certainly see why it received a mix reception, but if you can look past it’s flaws it’s worth a look.
I’ll start with the bad first, the friendly NPC’s are infuriating, time after time you’ll take up point in what you feel is a decent position, ready to drop back when the inevitable volley of incoming fire comes your way. You attempt to track back or sidestep into cover only to be stopped by your comrade who now occupies said position. Do they move to let you take cover? no, you just end up with your head well and truly above the parapet and nine times out of ten, dead.
The art feels a little dated now, it’s pretty enough in places and it almost has a Half Life 2 feel about it, but Half Life 2 is about 6 years old. And it’s short, very short, though that kinda suits me these days, whilst trying to juggle family commitments, music production and my day job.
Another gripe was the re-spawning enemies. In Homefront they are inconsistent throughout the game, sometimes they re-spawn, sometimes they don’t. It just seemed that when they did use them it wasn’t entirely necessary.
For me the single biggest issue is the reload times, they seem to take forever and it’s to the games detriment, if these were a fraction of a second faster, the pace and general feel of the game would be massively improved.
Issues aside I found that there was a fair bit to like about Homefront, the weapons felt good, they felt useful, powerful and made you feel like you could do some damage, despite the long reload time problem I already mentioned.
There were some really nice set pieces in the game, and some really cool battle set ups, even if they were a little cliched, church bell tower anyone? but in fairness even that was fun. Some of the in game cinematic set pieces were enjoyable too, the game attempts to pull at the heart strings and on occasion pulls it off, you see parents killed in the street and the orphaned child subsequently run up to his executed parents, screaming, this really helped reinforce the nature of the enemy and made you want to take revenge.
Having written this it definitely seems like there was more for me to dislike than to like, but I genuinely felt like I enjoyed the play-through, and I’d certainly recommend that FPS fans pick it up to kill a few hours.
I hope it does well enough to warrant a sequel, as I genuinely think that there is something here for the team to build on, and if they fix up the issues I’ve mentioned and bring the visuals up to date this could be competing with the best.