Well the fated day has arrived - after nearly a century spent working on building the "Mothership" it is time for the Kushan to embark on their journey from the desolate sands of Kharak and travel through the vastness of space to reach Hiigara, the Homeworld. That's actually a pretty good analogy now that I think about it, since Homeworld has gone through a similar journey to end up as it is today, when the Homeworld Remastered Collection launches on Steam.
Homeworld Remastered Collection Launches today
In a previous article we talked a bit about how the original games had aged quite a bit and how they were, for the most part quite bothersome to get running on modern hardware. We didn't really touch on the whole story and gameplay aspects, but with the game releasing (re-releasing?) in just under an hour with a stunning Launch trailer albeit with a strange musical selection, let's talk a bit about the story shall we.
'The Mothership is Standing By'
The thing I drew an analogy to the game's development in the first paragraph, was in fact the pretense of the Homeworld 1 Story/Plot. And without spoiling it to much for anyone that hasn't played it before such as myself, since I actually never have played the first campaign from start to finish, here's a "Prologue" as it were.
For thousands of years, the Kushan survived on the arid planet Kharak, corralled into the temperate geographical poles by a vast hot desert. Scarcity of arable land and natural resources had colored Kushan history with near constant warfare between the many clans. One day, however, everything changed: A satellite detected a huge spaceship under the sands of the Great Desert. It carried advanced spaceflight technologies. More importantly, a stone with a galactic map bearing two coordinates was found: One, located at the outer rim of the galaxy, was Kharak. The other, located near the center, bore a name so ancient it was common across all their languages and dialects: Hiigara, "Home".
The discovery united the clans of Kharak. They worked for nearly a century on building the "Mothership", a vast ship that would bear 600,000 of them to their destination. Technologies that never existed before were developed. Central to the Mothership was Karan S'jet, the scientist who integrated the Mothership's control system into her own nervous system. She became the core of the Mothership and was known as Fleet Command.
Homeworld 1 Remastered Story Trailer
The second game takes place roughly 100 years or so after the first one and revolves around the 'Hiigaran's' whom in the previous game were the 'Kushan' race, back before they managed to travel all the way to their Homeworld Hiigara and reclaim their lost heritage.
The story continues that, while it wasn't known at the time, the Hyperspace Core found in the Khar-Toba that was used to power the Mothership was incredibly rare and one of only three in the galaxy. The Cores, of which the Kushan had the second, were left behind by a so-called Progenitor race, which eventually allowed hyperspace travel. The First Core was possessed by the Bentusi: a powerful and enigmatic race of traders who assisted the Exiles during the first game. The third was lost until approximately one hundred years after the Exiles reclaimed Hiigara, found by a Vaygr Warlord named Makaan. With his massive Flagship empowered by the third core, Makaan began a campaign of conquest, seizing control of the remnants of the Taiidan Empire and surrounding star systems, and—as of the beginning of Homeworld 2—began attempts to capture Hiigara. The story states that religious beings of the galaxy consider the discovery of the Third Core to announce the End Times, during which Sajuuk, thought to be an immensely powerful being, will return. Makaan believes himself to be the Sajuuk-Khar, a messianic figure that will unite the Three Cores and herald the return of Sajuuk.
The game begins with the commissioning of a new Mothership, the Pride of Hiigara, similar in shape and design to the original Mothership and commanded by Karan S'jet, as in the original game. The ship is attacked by the Vaygr during the final stages of construction but escapes. The Bentusi inform the Hiigarans that they must find Balcora Gate, left behind by the Progenitors, behind which is something essential for stopping either the Vaygr threat, the End Times, or both.
Homeworld 2 Remastered Story Trailer
8 Player Multiplayer and Kushan VS Hiigaran
Now then, one of the biggest new gameplay additions is all the new shiny Multiplayer stuff that they have managed to add in. There are a ton of new features that you can mix and match as you like in the 'Homeworld Remastered' game mode. Such as Bounties, where you get Resource Units (RU) every time you kill an enemy ship/wing. Relics which spawn in to act as an incentive for sort of a King of the Hill battle, since if you hold a Relic it will generate RU at an increased rate and amount the longer the Relic has been in the match.
There's an option to have random challenges appear which reward you with RU if you complete them before your opponent, challenges such as "Harvest X amount of RU before your opponent" etc. And you of course have most of the old default options such as Fleet Capacity, Starting Resources and such, as well as having only the classical settings (none of the new bounties and such) for Homeworld 1&2 as separate game modes aptly named 'Deatmatch'.
Some other stuff that was mentioned in the previous article is that we will get 8 player Multiplayer again, as it was in Homeworld 1, and the fact that you will be able to play as Kushan VS Hiigaran, which is going to feel rather odd since they are the protagonists and essentially the same Race/faction but with a couple of differences in play style and ships between both games.
I'll leave you with this video showcasing the cinematcis in 4K and hopefully I'll see you in Space in just under an hour when the game is released on Steam. (or if you are reading this in the future, right now)