This video game review takes a long hard look at Homefront, an invasion-based shooter that is near and dear to our hearts.
When the film Red Dawn came out in 1984, it scared many of its viewers by giving them a glimpse of what an invasion on American soil would look like. Homefront does the same, but it does so via video game consoles. John Milius, the man who wrote Red Dawn's screenplay, is also responsible for Homefront's chilling storyline. While the storyline is great, Homefront does suffer from some flaws in its single player offering. Still, the game does have enough juice to make it an attractive title for fans of first-person shooters.
Homefront's setting is what makes it so unique. The year is 2027, and the location is the United States. North Korea has united with South Korea to become the Greater Korean Republic. The unified nation is backed heavily by nuclear arms, which has given it the power to occupy the United States. Although it may sound radical, the setting is plausible, and it gives Homefront a very eerie feeling.
Single player mode centers around you and your teammates fighting the Korean occupation in suburbia. You are part of the homeland force known as the Resistance, and you must do everything you can to survive. You are obviously outgunned by your Korean enemies, but you do have opportunities to obtain some of their weapons throughout the game to level the playing field. The fact that you are basically a motley group of freedom fighters in the campaign does add a strategic element, since you will have to conserve your ammunition and other supplies in order to be successful. The beginning of the campaign mode does a nice job of giving you a backstory of the years leading up to the occupation, and it sets the scene for the combat that is soon to follow for you and your comrades.
The main characters are decent, but you never really feel a connection to any of them throughout the campaign. Don't get me wrong, the dialogue offered by the characters is not bad by any means. Some could consider it to be rather overdone, however. Connor is the central character of the Resistance, and is similar to a hardened veteran. Boone is the oldest of the group and a former police officer. He is seen as the father figure who keeps everyone together. Hopper is a Korean American who is an expert at rigging explosives and fixing vehicles. Last, but not least, is Rianna, the humanitarian. As the campaign progresses, you will get some help from your allies, but don't expect them to act as your bulletproof vest. As is the case with many shooters, you will have to carry the load and will be counted on to save the day.
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