Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak lifts off on January 20

Instead of sailing through the stars, giant spaceships will soon be landmarks of a vast desert world in in Homeworld: Deserts of Kharak. Previously known as Homeworld: Shipbreakers (and before that, Hardware: Shipbreakers), this prequel for the Homeworld series is being developed by Blackbird Interactive, and it'll be published by Gearbox Software. Gearbox released this trailer along with its announcement, and it's so beautiful:

This game's January 20 launch date is approaching at warp speed. There's more good news beyond the short wait, too. Deserts of Kharak's free-to-play model is no more. Instead, the title will be a full retail release.

Blackbird Interactive is the brainchild of a number of ex-Relic employees that worked on the original Homeworld games. Back in October at Unite 2015, Blackbird gave a presentation on the procedural cinematography tool it's building for the game, plus details of how they're using the Unity engine to power it. That presentation exemplifies the care and attention to detail the studio is giving the first truly new entry to the franchise in over 12 years for me.

As another entry in one of my favorite franchises, I have high hopes for Deserts of Kharak. Homeworld was possibly the game that crystallized my PC hardware enthusiasm back in 2000, when I got the demo running on a Riva TNT2-powered computer at my high school.  After I saw it running smoothly at 1024×768, the upgrade bug took up permanent residence in my brain. Let's hope Kharak lives up to the high bar set by Homeworld Remastered.

Colton Westrate

I post Shortbread, I host BBQs, I tell stories, and I strive to keep folks happy.

Comments closed
    • Puiucs
    • 4 years ago

    All we are missing now is a good Dune game.

    • UnfriendlyFire
    • 4 years ago

    A remake of of Homeworld Cataclysm would also be great. There’s one mission where you have to protect a refugee convoy after their escorts were “infected” and converted into a biological version of the borg.

    Every time a ship is infected, you can hear the crew’s screams over the radio…

    [url<]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I5YgLvju_2A&feature=youtu.be&t=13m10s[/url<]

      • Krogoth
      • 4 years ago

      It is going have to done from scratch, since the source code for HW: Cataclysm got lost. 🙁

        • UnfriendlyFire
        • 4 years ago

        It’s worth more than doing another CoD refresh.

    • Krogoth
    • 4 years ago

    This is a prequel to Homeworld 1.

    Shipbreakers was originally a spiritual prequel because Blackbird didn’t have have the rights at the time. This changed when Gearbox bought Homeworld IP and gave permission to Blackbird to make a proper prequel which is why the project name and backstory changed. 😉

    • Chrispy_
    • 4 years ago

    Anything that [i<][url=http://s3.amazonaws.com/cdn.roosterteeth.com/uploads/images/ae6611ec-79d8-4794-8d93-7ac9a3a2e7f5/md/Jenkies1255000dc527dc5d.jpg<]even vaguely resembles[/url<][/i<] must be investigated.

    • TwoEars
    • 4 years ago

    Wasn’t homeworld a 3d space game? And now it’s a 2d desert game? Talk about change in scale.

      • Krogoth
      • 4 years ago

      It is a prequel where Kiith(clans) on Kharak are in a “Gold Rush” trying to grab all of the lost technology. The rush was spark from the discovery of the Khar-Toba (one of the prison ships). 😉

      • Voldenuit
      • 4 years ago

      I’d love to see a tactical combat game set in space where all maneuvers have to be done with orbital mechanics. All paths are conic sections, plane changes use lots of delta vee, and engagement times and periods are predicated on the orbital periods.

      Naturally, it’d have to be simplified and sped up for gameplay reasons, but would be an interesting challenge to design, code for, and play.

      That said, I don’t turn my nose up at a good 2d strategy game, either. If it’s good enough for Khan, it’s good enough for me :).

    • hendric
    • 4 years ago

    <throws wallet at screen>
    TAKE MY MONEY AND GIVE ME GOODIES!

    • mkk
    • 4 years ago

    Unity engine and ground units doesn’t quitw whet my appetite, but anything purportedly related to Homeworld must be eyed.

    • cygnus1
    • 4 years ago

    I haven’t heard anything about the free copies for the people that they canceled orders on about 2 years ago for the prospector’s guide. Any updates on that?

      • BBI-MichaelK
      • 4 years ago

      Hey there!

      Backers for the original Hardware: Shipbreakers were refunded, and should be recieving a copy of Deserts of Kharak for free! Hope that clears up any confusion.

        • cygnus1
        • 4 years ago

        Right on! Thanks for the reply. Looking forward to that. Is it going to be through a game service like steam or GoG?

    • Neutronbeam
    • 4 years ago

    Large, crashed starships in a desert that need exploring and that set the backdrop for a more expansive story? Hmm…seems oddly familiar at this specific point in time– yet somehow I can’t quite place the reference.

    Ah well, nevermind! Looking forward to The Force Awakens in IMAX 3D the day after Christmas!

    • Voldenuit
    • 4 years ago

    This reminds me of [url=http://store.steampowered.com/app/318230/<]Convoy[/url<], in a good way.

    • sweatshopking
    • 4 years ago

    OK SO WHOS THIS COLTAN GUY

      • drfish
      • 4 years ago

      ME!

        • Neutronbeam
        • 4 years ago

        I thought something about the writing seemed fishing…congrats on the gig doctor!

        • sweatshopking
        • 4 years ago

        Good. The more people I have working on the inside the better. Don’t forget your report due this weekend.

          • Milo Burke
          • 4 years ago

          Has anyone ever seen SSK and Damage in the same place at the same time??

            • drfish
            • 4 years ago

            I see where you’re going here… Interesting.

            • Milo Burke
            • 4 years ago

            Maybe the capslock and Microsoft obsession is just a misleading facade. Because otherwise we’d all have figured it out by now?

        • SomeOtherGeek
        • 4 years ago

        What an awesome team we have at TR! Welcome aboard.

    • gbcrush
    • 4 years ago

    I have high hopes too!

    …Though I must say I’m a little disappointed with the story-line choice they made (to be fair, this is all a matter of my expectations, not anything they really did). When I first heard that Hardware: Shipbreakers was going to go into the Homeworld universe, I had kind of hoped that it would be set After Homeworld 1 or Homeworld 2.

    I wanted to get to a new planet, new characters (if there were any characters), and the idea that scavengers might be picking apart the crashed wreckages from subsequent fleets that were sent out…or perhaps even the wreckages from the main fleet, ships that were lost in battle or abandoned, or left behind, etc. Hell, I even had in mind “what if you’re part of a space-faring grouping hoping from planet to planet, digging up the remnants of those fleet scattered across several worlds!”

    Ahh well, doesn’t mean this game won’t be good, right? And one can always hope for a sequel. 🙂

      • drfish
      • 4 years ago

      I’m totally on board with a prequel, plenty of mystery buried in the sands.

        • gbcrush
        • 4 years ago

        Indeed. I remember getting a promo/trailer on CD/Soundtrack/liner notes sample for Homeworld before HW1 launched…and wow. Yes. Lots of backstory material to explore.

        I guess maybe my (minor) issues come from a) feeling that prequels are a little over done recently and that b) tying everything into the blood of the character from the first movie/book/film is way, way over-done.

        I mean it’s totally awesome that we get we get a Rachel S’Jet. Hell, I even think the name Rachel is great… and I think she looks great in that helmet/gear (thankfully not overly sexed up as far as I can tell). Fantastic. …but. But did it have to be a S’Jet? Couldn’t some other family have a shot at glory/being part of the major canon, etc?

          • Krogoth
          • 4 years ago

          Kiith S’Jet were known for their “philosophers and scientists”. IIRC, they were the ones who actually discovered the Guidestone during Khar-Toba Excavation and its significance. 😉

        • w76
        • 4 years ago

        I like the break from space, too. Most series don’t do that, they iterate on the exact same gameplay with just different stories, like Half Life or Starcraft (I think there might’ve been a Starcraft FPS, not sure). This gives them a chance to keep it fresh. Clever! Possibly.

        • Krogoth
        • 4 years ago

        Also I’m sure that discovery of the Khar-Toba and unification of the Kiith wasn’t a seamless and bloodless process. 😉

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This