Set in a near-future America of 2027 when a nuclear-armed Korea invades the United States, Homefront breaks from the typical first-person shooter formula to bring forth a robust campaign-focused experience with specific emphasis on a meticulously-crafted backstory. Will it be able to live up to the hype?
Developed by Kaos Studios, Homefront is a piece of speculative fiction written by the mind behind Red Dawn and Apocalypse Now. Set in the near-future, the title’s plot exists in a world where the international influence of the United States significantly declines while a united Korea builds a massive East Asian alliance set on taking over the West. Focusing on the collapse of the United States and subsequent occupation by the Greater Korean Republic, the suspenseful nature of Homefront is rooted in the domestic fear that would come as a result of a disorganized military, scarce supplies and lack of communication.
The core plot of Homefront is eerily reminiscent of Japan’s annexation of weak countries around it during World War II for both imperialistic pride and international prestige. Similarly, Korea, after uniting under the power of Kim Jon-Un, Kim Jong-Il’s son, takes over neighboring nations, taking advantage of resources and labor in areas that no longer enjoy the protection of the United States. To push the envelope, Korea launches an electromagnetic pulse explosion that takes out the entire electronic infrastructure of the U.S., sends paratroopers into the middle of the country, and irradiate the Mississippi River, separating the east and west ends of the nation.
Based around the terror that one can find in modern warfare, the game begins with the execution of the parents of a young child right in front of him, leaving the child alone and crying in the middle of the street. Within the first two minutes, you’ll find mass graves full of American bodies, hear talk of work camps, and engage in a firefight where mothers are covering their children. Historically, the United States has not been invaded since the War of 1812, yet you will find occupied America within the story with familiar stores erupting in flames and the distinct way of American life disrupted.
Points. The game will support up to 32 players in any given match with 16 players on each team. At launch, there will be seven maps, but there will be an Xbox-exclusive map pack that will be made available.
While that title’s gameplay isn’t exactly revolutionary, the characters and plot are what’s different, which is an important reason that this game is part of a distinct niche in the first-person genre. Homefront will be made available to Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC owners on March 15 with downloadable map packs set for the future.
What do you, fellow gamers, think? Are you going to enlist to defend the United States? Do you see this sort of game succeeding in this time of over-saturation? Sound off in the comments below.