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Homefront: The Revolution performance boosted by up to 25 per cent

UPDATE: Dambuster Studios promises more frame-rate improvements in upcoming 2.0 patch.

UPDATE 20/7/16 4:40pm: Dambuster Studios is promising further performance enhancements for Homefront: The Revolution in an upcoming 2.0 patch, as this statement explains:

Since the launch of Homefront: The Revolution we have released multiple patches and updates, mainly focusing on critical issues and the 'save stall' issue on console, but we have also achieved some performance improvements as this recent analysis by Digital Foundry shows.

Nonetheless, we are continuing to work on performance, and this is the primary focus for our next major update, 2.0, which is currently scheduled for August. This will introduce further significant improvements to frame rate, as well as additional bug fixes and reduction of save stalls down to a minimum.

The whole team at Dambuster Studios appreciates everybody's patience and continued support for Homefront: The Revolution.

Original story: Homefront: The Revolution's recent patch 1.06 boosts frame-rates on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One by a margin of up to 25 per cent, or 5fps in terms of in-game frame-rate. It's good news for both systems and the update promises a suite of optimisations to achieve this - including tweaks to lighting, animations, and also fixing a high draw call glitch relating to its mini-map. The end result is a smoother game, but one that's still far from ideal in either case.

It's worth noting a newer patch has also landed on PS4 alone, labeled 1.07, that fixes a few bugs - but it's 1.06 that offers the key optimisations. Compared to the launch update 1.02, we're seeing a massive gain in opening gameplay, though it's worth noting some aspects are unchanged. PS4's native resolution stays set to 1080p, while also Xbox One uses its usual 900p framebuffer. Equally we see tearing to the top of PS4's output which isn't in evidence on Microsoft's machine.

Xbox One remains the better performer of the two, and from the first cut-scene shows a lead of 2-3fps for stress points. The margin has narrowed significantly since launch, in part due to both graph readings now more readily hitting their 30fps cap, meaning we can't see the extent of the divide as we once could. But where there's a gap, it's Microsoft's machine that shows a lead in identical scenes.

Homefront: The Revolution's latest patches tested on console. Update 1.06 brings about major frame-rate boosts on PS4 and Xbox One - and we also test the latest patch 1.07 as well.

However, despite the impressive optimisation push, it's clear the underlying CryEngine tech still buckles under the weight of Homefront's ambition on console. All told, while gameplay is smoother overall, there are still some noticeable frame-rate issues - it's still prone to running as low as 17fps in its opening cut-scene, while gameplay outdoors operates between 20-30fps. In these worst passages of play, we're looking at almost identical performance to how the title stood pre-patch. In short, there are still some profound bottlenecks the developer hasn't been able to address.

On the plus side, frame-pacing is improved on PS4, and generally caps properly at the target 30fps. This means fewer spikes to 16ms that could previously add extra stutter, while Xbox One still tops out at an unusual 32fps- an awkward number that continues to create a judder sensation to movement. Added to that, auto-saves are no longer as frequent or long as before; a nuisance with Homefront on release that caused the game to hang up for long stretches.

It's a more palatable experience overall, but if you're looking to buy Homefront the Revolution on console, this patch still doesn't address all of its frame-rate issues. Despite the significant improvements in some areas, it remains a compromised experience compared to PC, and even with its boosted performance, results on patch 1.06 don't bridge the gap to 30fps as often as it needs to in order to provide a smooth, hitch-free ride.

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About the Author
Thomas Morgan avatar

Thomas Morgan

Senior Staff Writer, Digital Foundry

32-bit era nostalgic and gadget enthusiast Tom has been writing for Eurogamer and Digital Foundry since 2011. His favourite games include Gitaroo Man, F-Zero GX and StarCraft 2.

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