Home just isn’t the same.
There was a time when the idea behind a US invasion sounded both exciting and interesting as a premise for a video game. In a real world scenario it’s rather frightening, but in hypothetical situations, it can make for some interesting fiction. Movies have done it, and a few games as well. Nothing has truly captured that gritty feeling in the gaming world, though the original Homefront came really close. It was a rather short campaign that left things on a cliffhanger, and there has been nothing since. Well forget all that, as Homefront Revolution is only similar in name and spirt, as this is a retelling of Homefront and open world first person shooter that aims to take those previous ideas on a grander scale. Does it succeed though?
Get to cover.
One thing I had to remind myself going into this title for review is the fact that this has been through development hell. Losing devs, publishers, and possible hope, there was a point and time where it seemed as if this game was never going to release. In the state it’s currently in, I’m sure some players would have preferred it that way. I do have to give credit to the team that ultimately spent a lot of time for a game of this scale and size, going through the troubles they did to get this out. Though ultimately the end product still suffers.
Platforms: XB1, PS4, PC
Price I’d Pay: $19.99
Multiplayer: co-op missions
How long to beat: 15+ Hours
There are glimpses of hope in the entire game littered throughout. Moments of tension and equal beauty. A world that is destroyed but still vaguely familiar. The core element of an invading force and the destruction in their wake and chaos is fully on display, and one of the defining moments of Homefront Revolution. The premise aside, it will take players a lot of overlooking an abundance of issues to see the good that Homefront offers.
While there is a great upgrade for the weapons system, the weapons themselves feel off and don’t really feel satisfying to fire. The visuals are great at moments, but other times look extremely poor in quality along with framerate issues that are all over the place. The game saves often so as to not force players to have to redo much e upon death, but each of those saves comes at the price of a 3 second lag.
These elements, along with the random issues I’ve seen through my playtime (which include holding a cellphone like a gun, floating debris and getting stuck in wall after liberating a zone) permeate the entire experience. One minute I was in the zone, recruiting soldiers to help fight the good fight, totally involved in what I was doing, then I suddenly found myself taken out of that experience with the framerate chugging and enemies swarming me, that I couldn’t quite get a shot on. Another moment when I was riding my motorbike through the city the game just couldn’t keep up; I was running into enemies that had no reaction and the screen slowed down to a crawl.
Homefront Revolution has an interesting open world set up, with a nice weapon upgrade system, interesting world to explore at times, and a core idea that totally sells itself. Yet we still don’t have a game that has knocked this out of the park, and that’s a shame. With more refinement to all these framerate issues, chugging, and random glitches on the console versions, this would be an above average, fun experience for players. A patch or two could hopefully correct these issues to bring up Homefront to a more suitable level of enjoyment, as it stands though, I am struggling to see the better elements simply because they are fogged up by everything else more often then not.
Two steps forward, one step back. I want to like Homefront Revolution more than I do. It’s got a good heart and some solid ideas buried behind the mess, and most players won’t be willing to put up with it. Those that do will find some solid moments of gameplay strewn throughout, but if it’s worth their time is ultimately up to them.
My favorite moment: Taking over a camp successfully feels extremely satisfying with your AI teammates… when it all comes together properly.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.