Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak – Review
Follow Genre: Strategy
Developer: Blackbird Interactive
Publisher: Gearbox Software
Platforms: PC
Tested on: PC

Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak – Review

Site Score
8.0
Good: nice graphics and sound, fun gameplay, solid mechanics
Bad: dead multiplayer, not a lot of maps, limited campaign
User Score
0
(0 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)

Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak is a ground-based RTS which prequels the classic Homeworld games. You’ll assemble your army and lead them to an object that is believed to save your precious planet. Combine heavy duty units, big environments, tactical combat and strategy and fulfill your destiny!

homeworld

Story

Homeworld takes place on Kharak, your planet. Kharak is slowly dying as the desert keeps spreading at an alarming rate, soon wiping out life as there will be no more water, but there is hope. Deep within the Great Banded Desert, an object called the “Jaraci Object” has been detected and it is believed it will bring salvation to the planet. You and your team now start an expedition to retrieve the object, but this won’t be easy as the planet is being conflicted by war and other parties who want to get to the object…  You’ll be taking your expedition carrier into the front lines, and there’s a long road ahead of you.

The story is pretty good overall, it isn’t mind blowing with loads of story value, but the addition of really nice cutscenes and dialogue keeps you intrigued and interested. Before every mission you also get a personal log of one of the crew members, which is very interesting and adds a lot to the immersion.

DesertsOfKharak64 2016-02-11 20-01-40-93

Graphics

Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak actually has quite good graphics. The game itself looks realistic and dust clouds in the desert also look nicely detailed. Even when zoomed in all the way, you can see that everything has quite good detail to it, which is always a nice thing to see. The cutscenes before every mission look less realistic but look more like a rough digital drawing, which isn’t great but it actually has some charm to it so it’s not a bad thing at all.

Audio

When talking about music and sound effects, Homeworld does a great job yet again in this field. All dialogues are narrated very well and the sound effects sound very nice themselves overall. The music also fits very well with the atmosphere of the game and isn’t distracting or overwhelming at all, but it’s not music that will blow you away however.

Gameplay

Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak is a true RTS and has all of the elements you’d expect an RTS to have. The controls themselves are quite basic as well: left click to select units, right click to move, corresponding keybinds for quick actions for your units etc. Everything that a good RTS should have is present and works fairly well, the camera can be a bit quirky at times but this can easily be fixed by resetting it to the default position.

DesertsOfKharak64 2016-02-11 20-05-13-35

The main mode in the game is the campaign, this will take you through a series of 13 missions, each introducing new gameplay elements and being more challenging than the previous. What’s very nice is that your units will actually carry over from mission to mission, saving the groups you assign them to, their ranks and their upgrades. You can also start with some predefined units that the game gives you if you don’t have a lot of units left from the previous mission. Each mission always has a couple of objectives for you to complete as you make your way to the Jaraci Object.

Of course the game also gives you a nice little tutorial at the start of the game to get you acquainted with all of the mechanics in the game. As you’re on an expedition, your main “building”, the Kapisi, is actually a huge carrier ship that drives, giving you more flexibility. From the Kapisi you can research new units and upgrades, build units and even launch bombers that can take out your opponents. As expected, certain units counter other ones so you’ll have to have a good balance between support vehicles, light vehicles, medium vehicles, heavy vehicles and more. Your success will depend on it!

DesertsOfKharak64 2016-02-14 16-55-47-14

Some other mechanics can also be used to your advantage like high ground. In order to find the high ground, you can use the attack move which displays height lines and you can also use the tactical view. The tactical view is basically a giant map which allows you to have a very nice overview of the fog of war, detected enemies and your units. It’s very useful when devising strategies when trying to kill your opponent.

Homeworld also features two other game modes: skirmish and multiplayer. They pretty much speak for themselves but let’s talk about them real quick anyway. In the skirmish you can test your skill against AI opponents which sadly aren’t that good anyway. In the multiplayer you can play ranked and unranked games, but very little people seem to be playing and it’s hard to actually find a game without sitting in queue for a very long time. There’s also not that many maps available to play. In total there are seven maps, only one of them can house up to six players, even though there is a 3v3 matchmaking in multiplayer.

Conclusion

Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak is a very decent RTS and experienced RTS players shouldn’t have any trouble figuring out what to do. The mechanics themselves are quite simple but have interesting aspects such as high and low ground which come very much in to play in every battle. The only bad points are that the game is quite “dead” multiplayer wise and there aren’t a whole lot of maps to choose from.

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

No Comments

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.