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09-28-2016

Homefront: The Revolution

If triple-A video games released in May were characterized as an otherwise pleasant airplane ride, Homefront: The Revolution would be the rude man taking your armrest and ripping egg salad sandwich farts. In a month dominated by quality (or at least competent) titles such as Doom, Uncharted 4, Battleborn, and Overwatch, Homefront: The Revolution struggled mightily to qualify as either quality or competent. At the time of writing, it's sitting at a 53 on Metacritic and OpenCritic says it's in the bottom 7.7 percent of games scored on the site. Numbers don't lie.

Although it's far from Homefront: The Revolution's only problem, technical performance is certainly one of its glaring problems. The PC version of the game has been said to have an astounding array of issues that even top-tier rigs have trouble compensating for. It's reported that the console versions spend a large chunk of the time running between 20 and 25 frames per second.

This has been unacceptable to almost everyone, including Dambuster Studios, the company that released Homefront: The Revolution in this state. On the game's forums, the community manager wrote "We're also aware that performance -- particularly frame rate -- is not currently where we want it to be, and we are working on additional patches to help address these issues and more."

To reiterate, despite knowing that Homefront: The Revolution's performance was subpar and unsatisfactory, Dambuster and Deep Silver still sold it. By many, many accounts, this is a broken game, yet it was released instead of delayed and fixed. And those closest to the project are willingly and publicly acknowledging that fact.

Homefront: The Revolution's troubled development history is well-documented (and recently-documented, in fact). It was probably inevitable that it'd turn out like this. Although, to posit another angle, consider that Deep Silver really doesn't publish many games. Deep Silver and its parent company Koch Media do a fair share of European distribution, but actual publishing can be far and few between.

Before Homefront: The Revolution, Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell was the most recent Deep Silver-published game. That released in January 2015. With that kind of gap, it's conceivable that a delay simply isn't an option that the higher-ups are willing to consider. "It's time some money rolled in" is a mindset that you could certainly imagine dominating a scenario like this.

Whatever the case, it's a no-win situation for everyone who matters. Consumers are fleeced out of their money if they buy a bad game, and the developer is dissatisfied with the product it put out. Nothing about this is okay.

Homefront: The Revolution is out now! [Homefront forums]

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