Set in a post-invasion Philadelphia, Homefront: The Revolution puts you in the shoes of resistance member Ethan Brady, tasked with fighting the controlling North Korean army that has taken the country over. Homefront is a classic open-world experience, with many places to explore, things to collect and enemies to shoot at. However unlike other open-world games, there are a multitude of issues keeping the game from reaching it’s potential, with accessibility options being one of the main obstacles.
Homefront: The Revolution is a first-person shooter, and as such exhibits the typical gameplay experience you would expect from the genre. Control options are limited to a limited number of stick and button layouts, many of which are familiar, such as lefty or legacy controls. There is an option to enable aim assist, but it is not nearly strong enough to rely on. Shooting just doesn’t feel crisp, which is in part due to frame rate dips when in combat. Timing and precision are required to play, and some menus (like the weapon modification screen) require multiple button presses/holds simultaneously. Homefront’s gameplay and accessibility feels completely stale and generic.
The one area where Homefront does a good job in is in regards to subtitles. Speaker names and full subtitles are included, and even includes random conversation you’ll pick up when walking by some NPCs (however some interactions don’t always work). There are standard volume sliders for music, sound effects and dialogue, which help to highlight voices during extended firefights. Having stealth elements to gameplay, sound is pretty essential in some instances, and not having it could lead to a bump in difficulty.
While subtitles are included, font is small and sometimes very hard to see. The main menu, for instance, has some red font that is both small and blends into the background. Font while in game is, in some places, small and hard to read as well. The player will occasionally get text messages on his in-game smart-phone, which the player reads by…well, picking up their smart phone. This leaves font smaller than usual with no way to zoom in, on top of the glow of the screen making words blurry at times. The main menu while in game thankfully has large, bright font, making navigating the settings easy.
Fortunately, there seems to be no glaring colorblind issues. Icons in the world and mini-map are mostly black and white, and locations are usually drab and void of color. This creates somewhat of a problem with lighting, as even max brightness leaves the environment dark. This is a conscious design choice no doubt, but it does have a hit on accessibility.
* - Nails the aesthetic of a war-torn Philadelphia
* - Plenty of things to do and collect
* - Bugs and technical issues weigh the experience down
* - Accessibility features are few and far between
* - Story fails to realize the potential of the premise