THQ Declares its Plans for Homefront 2 After Closing Kaos Studios
Written Monday, June 13, 2011 By Richard WalkerView author's profile
Having shipped 2.6 million copies of Homefront, THQ has still decided to close down developer Kaos Studios, which means that the franchise will now rest in the hands of the newly founded THQ Montreal, where ex-Ubisoft dev Patrice Désilets moved to earlier this year.
Talking to Eurogamer at E3, VP of core games for THQ, Danny Bilson revealed "interesting" new plans for the Homefront sequel, with valuable lessons learnt from the first game being implemented for the follow-up: "Everything we learned from [the original] you'll see executed in other games going forward, and including that franchise going forward. We'll have some really interesting announcements in the future about the future of that brand."
Apparently, Homefront 2 will address the criticisms and shortcomings of the first game then, and when asked whether he was satisfied with Homefront, Bilson replied, "No. But I loved the game. It was a tremendous learning experience for us. We learned a lot about managing dedicated servers. We got very ambitious with dedicated servers."
Bilson added: "I put a lot of myself into that effort on that game. I learned a lot. I still think it's creatively a fantastic game, a great place to go. The environmental storytelling is excellent. The marketing was wonderful. That brand resonated with a lot of people emotionally.
"We sold through a million units in a week. That's huge on a brand new IP."
Furthermore, Bilson is angling for uniformly excellent reviews across the board with Homefront 2, rather than the mixed reception the first game received: "I would like to get to a place where we don't get mixed reviews, we get all great reviews, as certain games get. We had 40 reviews over 80. 40. And some that were just down in the bottom. I don't want to have games that are so controversial on quality. I want to have consistency across everybody's experience with them," he said. "We need to look at our games in terms of not just what we love about them, but what could somebody not like about them, and work on every little corner of them and shore them up to get to greatness.
"We're growing. We're learning. We're applying learnings. That game taught us tons. It also taught us some really good things. It was an example of the new way we market core in THQ. That was the first large campaign executed under my leadership with great marketers unchained. We succeeded really well."
Finally, Bilson also wants THQ Montreal to focus on improving the online experience after Homefront fell victim to some server-based issues during its first weeks of release.
"We also learned a lot about the service side of an online game needing dedicated servers. And learned a tremendous amount, which is all rolled out now in the demo. I hear it's going beautifully, with great connectivity. Everything's smooth," Bilson noted. "The issues we had on Homefront we'll never have again. And yet, I absolutely love that brand and want to continue to make it great."
No further details have yet been revealed on Homefront 2 beyond the above, but rest assured that it's definitely coming.