While some pundits, and the creators of South Park, view Kim Jong-il, the leader of North Korea to be a puppet-like bumbling fool, others view him as a clear and present danger to the United States and its allies.
Clearly, the guys at KAOS Studios are among the latter camp (or they just think it makes an interest premise) because they’re making Homefront, a first-person shooter for THQ in which Korea has taken over the United States.
Set in 2027, a few years after the Korean occupation began, the game casts you as a resistance fighter who has to travel from Colorado to San Francisco. Though, at least in the part of the game we saw, this isn’t as easy as just taking the train. Still recovering from some unknown injury — well, unknown to us; this level is early in the game, but it was all we saw — you have to jump into the fray when the Korean’s attack your settlement.
Though we weren’t allowed to play the game ourselves, we did sneak a peek at the Xbox controller while the rep from KAOS was playing, and saw that the controls seem to be along the same lines as ones in such similar FPS games as Call of Duty. This includes pulling the left trigger to look down the barrel of the gun, so to better hit your enemies without wasting bullets. Which — we’re guessing, we don’t know — is probably an issue when your government has been overthrown by a force who doesn’t appreciate dissent.
But maybe we’re wrong. This is, after all, a first-person shooter. Though don’t let the date fool you, this ain’t a sci-fi shooter. In fact, the aforementioned battle felt more like something out of Modern Warfare 2 than Halo 3.
In addition, while the weapons are futuristic, they’re all based on ones that the U.S. military currently has in the prototype stage. In fact, KAOS has hired Richard James “Mack” Machowicz, the former Navy SEAL turned host of the Discovery Channel show Future Weapons, to consult on the game’s hardware. One of the coolest, in the level we saw, was this robotic tank you’d sic on targets with a laser sight on your gun.
Machowicz isn’t the only Hollywood connection to this game, however. John Milius, the screenwriter of such movies as Dirty Harry, Apocalypse Now (with Francis Ford Coppola), and Clear and Present Danger, who also wrote and directed Conan the Barbarian and Red Dawn, is consulting on the game’s story, much the same way he did on 2005’s World War II first-person shooter Medal of Honor: European Assault.
Sadly, it’s going to be a while before we see the fruits of either man’s labor. Though the level we saw looked ready to play, and though the rep from KAOS said they already know that the game will feature “substantial multiplayer” — hardly a surprise given that these are the same guys who gave us last year’s Frontlines: Fuel of War — they also said the game won’t be out for a while; certainly not this year. Which may be good news to Kim Jong-il, but for fans of frantic shooters, this might call for an overthrowing.