The Homeworld wiki last edited by drawfire on 03/13/13 02:37PM View full history

Overview

Published by Sierra Entertainment and developed by Relic Entertainment, Homeworld is a space-themed real-time strategy game released on September 28, 1999 for the PC. Billed as one of the first truly three-dimensional real-time strategy games, Homeworld takes place within environments that allow movement in all directions. Its single-player campaign follows a group of people known as the Hiigarans, who, having just recently uncovered the means to construct spacefaring vessels, set out upon a journey to rediscover their long-lost homeworld, Hiigara. Homeworld was extremely well-recieved by critics at the time of its release, not only garnering high marks in reviews, but also receiving numerous additional accolades, including multiple "Game of the Year" awards. To date, the positive response to Homeworld has lead to two additional titles in the franchise: 2000's Homeworld: Cataclysm, a stand-alone expansion pack created by Barking Dog Studios, and 2003's Homeworld 2, a direct sequel to the original game created by Relic itself.

Plot

Homeworld's campaign begins high above the desert world of Kharak, an isolated and inhospitable planet on the far side of the galaxy. Prior to the events of the game, upon having discovered an artifact known as the Guidestone, an ancient relic indicating that the population of Kharak was in fact native to another world, Hiigara, the previously splintered Kharakian clans united to construct the Mothership, a massive vessel capable of carrying them across space to their old home. Sixty years after this discovery, construction of the Mothership is completed, and shortly after it leaves Kharak on its first test run, a fleet of unknown origin emerges from space, laying waste to Kharak and claiming that the Kharakians have violated a millenium-old treaty forbidding them from developing or using hyperdrive technology. The crew of the Mothership returns to find that they, along with the 600,000 people loaded into cryo trays for the journey to Hiigara, are now the last of their people. With nothing left for them in the Kharak system, they embark upon a mission of revenge against the Taiidan fleet that attacked and decimated Kharak.

The Taiidani attack and destroy the defenders of Kharak while their Mothership is away.

Deciding that they are not yet ready to confront the Taiidan at their present strength, the Hiigarans jump to a nearby star system in order to gather resources and organize an assault. They are soon contacted by the Bentusi, another spacefaring race that sympathizes with the Hiigaran's cause. After trading vital capital ship technology with the outcasts, the Bentusi also promise to bring their cause before the Galactic Council, a body of great authority. Fending off an attack by Turanic Raiders, a pirate organization loyal to the Taiidan, the Hiigarans finally catch up with the fleet responsible for the destruction of Kharak. After a long and desperate battle, they destroy the fleet, and resolve to push forward towards their homeworld, Hiigara. The Mothership makes another jump, this time to the outskirts of a vast nebula.

Within the nebula the Hiigarans encounter a group called the Kadeshi, a culture whose religion commands the protection of the nebula from all outsiders. The Kadeshi are enraged to find the Hiigarans harvesting the nebula's vast crystalline structures for resources, prompting them to attack. The Hiigarans are able to survive the assault by the Kadeshi, who command hundreds of swarmers and a massive needle-shaped mothership, but their attempts to flee only draw them deeper within the nebula. Ultimately, the Hiigarans are forced to fight and destroy the Kadeshi, only to realize in the final battle that their origins are identical. The Kadeshi's most sacred relic was an ancient vessel identical to the ship originally discovered beneath the sands of Kharak. Ten thousand years prior, the Kadeshi and the Hiigarans had been kin.

On the far side of the nebula, the Hiigarans discover a strange vessel. Far in the depths of space, removed from all nearby worlds, lies a large ship of strange design, orbited by vessels of different races. Upon closer inspection, the Hiigarans discover that the vessel emits a control field which subverts any large vessel nearby, bringing it under its own control. By attacking the ship with snub fighters, the Hiigarans manage to deactivate the field, in the process gaining control over all of the vessels that had orbited the ship.

The Hiigarans find a number of allies during their arduous journey, including the Bentusi.

Emboldened by the unexpected expansion of their fleet, the Hiigarans set upon a Taiidani research station orbiting a supernova, destroying it quickly before hyperspacing away. The Taiidan react to this by attacking the Bentusi, whom they had discovered to be aiding the Hiigaran rebellion from the start. The Hiigarans come upon a severely damaged Bentusi ship fighting a desperate battle against a Taiidani fleet. After the fleet is destroyed, the Bentusi reveal to the Hiigarans their origins: masters of their own galactic empire, they had benignly ruled the galaxy until they were attacked and overthrown. Only a collective outcry for mercy saved the people of Hiigara from extinction. Instead, they were forced into small colony ships and banished to the outer wastes of the galaxy. Kharak, their home for the past 10,000 years, was the last refuge of their people. Millennia passed, and although the Exiles soon forgot their lofty origins, the galaxy spun on, awaiting some miracle that would remove the new, tyrannical empire from power. Jumping again closer to the galactic core, the Hiigarans continue to battle the Taiidani Empire. Along the way, they discover a new ally, an insurrectionist movement within the Empire headed by Captain Elson of the Kapella. Elson and the Hiigarans journey to the Karos Graveyard, a vast region of space filled with wrecks and ancient relics. There, Elson contacts the Rebellion via an interstellar communications relay, and coordinates the push for the galactic center.

The Hiigarans make a final assault upon the Hiigaran system. Punching through a fleet of hyperspace inhibitors, they at last come to the ultimate destination of their journey. In orbit around their lost homeworld, the Hiigarans launch an assault upon the Emperor's personal fleet, which furiously besets them on three sides. The battle seems hopeless, as in the chaos of the final jump, Karen S'jet - the mind, heart and spiritual leader of the Hiigaran's Mothership - is somehow directly attacked by the Emperor and forced into unconsciousness. Yet in the final moments Captain Elson arrives with a fleet large enough to turn the tide. The Hiigarans rally, push back, and assault the Emperor's own Mothership. Karen S'jet regains consciousness in time to witness the final destruction of the the Emperor, and with him the end of the Taiidani Empire. The Hiigarans land upon their homeworld and reclaim the reigns of power. All vestiges of the old Empire are destroyed, and the Hiigarans gaze in wonder upon their new world, a green and verdant paradise in stark contrast to the wastes of Kharak. They awaken the colonists protected deep within the Mothership, and all disembark for the surface.

Gameplay

The Homeworld UI is decidedly unobtrusive.

Homeworld takes place within the weightlessness of space, and one of its signature features is the fact that units are not restricted to movement within a plane, but rather have the ability to move, attack, and perform other functions in three-dimensional space. Homeworld places a significant emphasis on the proper use of unit formations and tactics in order to win combat engagements, as it is seldom that maps will contain any intrinsic environmental elements that will affect the outcome of a battle. Unlike many of its predecessors in the RTS genre, there is no real base building in Homeworld, though the player's Mothership can be thought of as their base of operations. It is a durable vessel that is slow to move, and it represents the primary means of producing units, thus losing it spells defeat in most scenarios. Through the Mothership the player is able to construct offensive units, resource-gathering harvester ships, and science vessels that research new technologies to enable the construction of more advanced spacecraft.

The game's user interface can be controlled through a combination of mouse inputs and keyboard hotkeys, and Homeworld is notable for having no permanent on-screen HUD elements. The player can bring up a toolbar at any time by simply scrolling to the bottom of the screen with the mouse, which allows easy access to the Build, Research, Sensors, and Launch Managers, along with other information pertinent to the player and their current objectives. Units are selected either by clicking an individual unit or drag-selecting an entire group. Once selected, units can be given orders either by hotkeys or by right-clicking one of the selected units in order to bring up a context menu. Since there is no fixed terrain in Homeworld, the camera uses units as its focal point. The player may maneuver the camera around the current focal point by holding down the right mouse button while moving the mouse and may zoom in and out with the mouse wheel. Changing the camera's focus is accomplished by pressing either the F key or the middle mouse button, which switches the camera's focus to the currently selected unit or units.

The Sensors Manager allows quick threat assessment and movement orders over great distances.

The single-player portion of Homeworld consists of sixteen missions depicting the Hiigarans' hard-fought return to their homeworld of Hiigara. While the overarching gameplay of Homeworld can be boiled down to the perennial RTS imperative of amassing resources and technology in order to build a large enough offensive force to conquer one's enemies, the demands of individual missions may vary greatly. One mission, for instance, may require the player to prevent an important ally from being defeated, while another may challenge them to survive an asteroid bombardment. The campaign also makes a concerted effort to contextualize the player's actions within the overall narrative both with frequent use of inter-mission cutscenes and heavy use of voice-over during the missions themselves. Once all primary objectives for a mission have been completed, the player can remain within the current mission until they decide to end it by hitting the Hyperspace Jump button. It may be advantageous in some instances to postpone advancement, as the player can continue to collect resources and build units during this time.

In addition to its single-player, Homeworld shipped with a full eight-player multiplayer component complemented by a skirmish mode which pits a human player against up to seven A.I. opponents. It was initially playable through WON.net, Sierra's online gaming service, though after WON was taken offline in November of 2008, multiplayer support for Homeworld shifted to third-party gaming services such as GameRanger and Hamachi. Various options are available for multiplayer matches, such as whether or not bots are present and how resources are distributed. Different modes of play are available as well, such as Bounty Hunter mode, which awards players resources for destroying opposing ships.

Ships

Homeworld allows the player to select either the Kushan or the Taiidan during single-player or multiplayer games. For the most part, the difference between the two groups is entirely cosmetic in nature, and though the Kushan are seen as the canonical player faction during the game's campaign, choosing the Taiidan does not affect the game's story in any way. Both player factions possess twenty-eight ships in total, with twenty-six of those units being functionally identical between the two sides. The remaining two ships on either side represent their only real distinguishing factor in terms of gameplay, as both the Kushan and the Taiidan possess a single unique fighter and frigate class ship.

Fighter Class

Kushan AppearanceTaiidan AppearanceStatistics & Description
Kushan Scout
Taiidan Scout

Scout

  • Mass: 8 tons
  • Cost: 35 RUs
  • Build Time: 12 seconds
  • Firepower: 12
  • Armor: 110
  • Coverage: 12%
  • Maneuverability: Very High
  • Max. Velocity: 1,000 m/s
  • Special Function: Speed Burst
  • Required Tech: None
The cheapest and most expendable of the Fighter class units, the Scout, not surprisingly, is ideal for exploratory purposes thanks to its considerable speed and maneuverability, advantages that are only heightened while using its Speed Burst ability. The downside comes in its meager survivability, which prevents it from faring well in prolonged fights. Furthermore, its special ability causes it to consume fuel more rapidly.
Kushan Interceptor
Taiidan Interceptor

Interceptor

  • Mass: 10 tons
  • Cost: 55 RUs
  • Build Time: 18 seconds
  • Firepower: 26
  • Armor: 160
  • Coverage: 12%
  • Maneuverability: Very High
  • Max. Velocity: 875 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Fighter Drive, Heavy Fighter Chassis
An upgrade to the Scout that manages to greatly increase firepower while only slightly diminishing its speed, the Interceptor is a workhorse Fighter class unit that can comfortable go toe-to-toe with most other Fighter and Corvette class ships. In large enough numbers, Interceptors can also pose a credible threat to even larger ship types, especially those that have trouble targeting smaller, more agile vessels.
Kushan Defender
Taiidan Defender

Defender

  • Mass: 10 tons
  • Cost: 65 RUs
  • Build Time: 9 seconds
  • Firepower: 5
  • Armor: 325
  • Coverage: 11% / 20%
  • Maneuverability: High
  • Max. Velocity: 385 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Fighter Drive, Heavy Fighter Chassis, Fire Control
With pitiable firepower and poor speed for its class, the Defender is not an aggressive attack ship like most vessels within the Fighter category. Rather, the Defender is meant to be used, as its name implies, in defensive situations where it can properly take advantage of its primary strength: its surprisingly durable armor. It is mostly effective against other craft of its size, as larger vessels typically have little to fear form them.
Kushan Attack Bomber
Taiidan Attack Bomber

Attack Bomber

  • Mass: 10 tons
  • Cost: 85 RUs
  • Build Time: 20 seconds
  • Firepower: 42
  • Armor: 110
  • Coverage: 12%
  • Maneuverability: Very High
  • Max. Velocity: 750 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Fighter Drive, Heavy Fighter Chassis, Plasma Bomb Launcher
Enabled by research into Plasma Bomb technology, the Attack Bomber is a Fighter craft intended specifically for use against larger vessels. In fact, it is usually inadvisable to use Attack Bombers against ships within its own weight class, as Strike ships stand a much better chance of being able to evade its Plasma Bombs than larger, more ponderous units do.
Kushan Cloaked Fighter
  • (Kushan Only)

Cloaked Fighter

  • Mass: 10 tons
  • Cost: 85 RUs
  • Build Time: 45 seconds
  • Firepower: 39
  • Armor: 150
  • Coverage: 12%
  • Maneuverability: High
  • Max. Velocity: 775 m/s
  • Special Function: Cloaking
  • Required Tech: Fighter Drive, Heavy Fighter Chassis, Cloaked Fighter
Available only to the Kushan, Cloaked Fighters are powerful Fighter craft in possession of individual cloaking sails that their pilots can activate at will. While cloaked, they cannot be detected by normal units, though they are unable to attack until they de-cloak. With skill, they can be used to set up devastating ambushes, though they can be detected by specialized units such as Proximity Sensors.
  • (Taiidan Only)
Taiidan Defense Fighter

Defense Fighter

  • Mass: 10 tons
  • Cost: 85 RUs
  • Build Time: 20 seconds
  • Firepower: 192
  • Armor: 300
  • Coverage: 69
  • Maneuverability: Very High
  • Max. Velocity: 875 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Fighter Drive, Heavy Fighter Chassis, Defense Fighter
Developed by the Taiidan, Defense Fighters have the unique ability to shoot down incoming enemy fire in order to protect allied units. They have no offensive options of their own, however, so they must be accompanied by other ships if they hope to survive for long. They also have limitations in terms of what types of ordinance they can nullify, making them primarily useful against smaller ships.

Corvette Class

Kushan AppearanceTaiidan AppearanceStatistics & Description
Kushan Light Corvette
Taiidan Light Corvette

Light Corvette

  • Mass: 150 tons
  • Cost: 135 RUs
  • Build Time: 22 seconds
  • Firepower: 9
  • Armor: 900
  • Coverage: 16% / 33%
  • Maneuverability: Medium
  • Max. Velocity: 575 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Corvette Drive, Corvette Chassis
The most basic attack vessel in the Corvette class, the Light Corvette is extremely durable when compared to Fighter class ships, but somewhat lightly armored for a Corvette. It is fairly cheap to produce for its class, and relatively quick as well, though it leaves something to be desired in the firepower category, with other later Corvettes greatly surpassing it in terms of damage potential.
Kushan Heavy Corvette
Taiidan Heavy Corvette

Heavy Corvette

  • Mass: 150 tons
  • Cost: 240 RUs
  • Build Time: 25 seconds
  • Firepower: 23 / 22
  • Armor: 1,700
  • Coverage: 33%
  • Maneuverability: Medium
  • Max. Velocity: 520 m/s
  • Special Function: Charged Burst Attack
  • Required Tech: Corvette Drive, Corvette Chassis, Heavy Corvette Upgrade
With roughly twice the firepower and durability of the Light Corvette, the Heavy Corvette is clearly superior to its predecessor. Furthermore, it is only modestly slower than its forebear, and gains the additional ability to unleash a Charged Burst Attack that is particularly effective against armored targets. In significant numbers, Heavy Corvettes can even prove viable against some of the larger ships in the game.
Kushan Repair Corvette
Taiidan Repair Corvette

Repair Corvette

  • Mass: 150 tons
  • Cost: 150 RUs
  • Build Time: 20 seconds
  • Firepower: 5
  • Armor: 1,200
  • Coverage: None / 1%
  • Maneuverability: Low
  • Max. Velocity: 500 m/s
  • Special Function: Repair & Refuel
  • Required Tech: None
Though it comes with a token amount of offensive capability, the Repair Corvette's true purpose is to repair and refuel other ships. Unlike the Support Frigate, however, the Repair Corvette can only service one vessel at a time, making it a somewhat inefficient way to restore large groups of units to optimal capacity. It has no prerequisites, though, so it can act as an alternative to the Support Frigate until it is unlocked.
Kushan Salvage Corvette
Taiidan Salvage Corvette

Salvage Corvette

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 220 RUs
  • Build Time: 30 seconds
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 1,500
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Low
  • Max. Velocity: 425 m/s
  • Special Function: Capture Enemy Ships
  • Required Tech: Corvette Drive, Corvette Chassis
The Salvage Corvette is a specialized craft that can capture hostile ships and return them to the Mothership, where they can be refitted for use against the player's enemies. Salvage Corvettes can be a great boon to the player, as capturing a ship does not require a resource investment past what is required to create the Corvettes themselves. Capturing larger ships calls for larger numbers of Salvage Corvettes.
Kushan Multi-Gun Corvette
Taiidan Multi-Gun Corvette

Multi-Gun Corvette

  • Mass: 150 tons
  • Cost: 225 RUs
  • Build Time: 28 seconds
  • Firepower: 19
  • Armor: 1,400
  • Coverage: 74% / 24%
  • Maneuverability: High
  • Max. Velocity: 695 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Corvette Drive, Corvette Chassis, Fast Tracking Turrets
With six fully articulated turrets attached to its frame, each of which can track targets independently, the Multi-Gun Corvette is a beast against Fighter ships, as it can attack multiple swarming vessels simultaneously. The individual power of each gun is not the strongest in its class, however, so it loses some of its punch when tackling larger targets that require focused firepower.
Kushan Minelayer Corvette
Taiidan Minelayer Corvette

Minelayer Corvette

  • Mass: 150 tons
  • Cost: 275 RUs
  • Build Time: 40 seconds
  • Firepower: 183
  • Armor: 1,800
  • Coverage: 100%
  • Maneuverability: High
  • Max. Velocity: 425 m/s
  • Special Function: Lay Mines
  • Required Tech: Corvette Drive, Corvette Chassis, Minelaying Tech
Representing one of the few instances of static defense in Homeworld, the Minelayer Corvette can be ordered to set mines at its current location, which activate should an enemy come near them. This is primarily useful in defending against vessels of Frigate class or higher, as smaller ships can typically outrun a mine once it activates. For direct offense, the Minelayer Corvette can also project mines directly toward a target.

Resource Class

Kushan AppearanceTaiidan AppearanceStatistics & Description
Kushan Resource Collector
Taiidan Resource Collector

Resource Collector

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 650 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 10,800
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Low
  • Max. Velocity: 325 m/s
  • Special Function: Refuel
  • Required Tech: None
The Resource Collector is a vital harvesting unit that gathers usable construction materials from asteroids, dust clouds, and the like. Once it is at full capacity, the Collector will attempt to drop off its resource load at the nearest Mothership, Resource Controller, or Carrier. In situations where resources are located far away from the Mothership, it is generally advisable to have a secondary drop point closer to the resource field.
Kushan Resource Controller
Taiidan Resource Controller

Resource Controller

  • Mass: 600 tons
  • Cost: 680 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute, 5 seconds
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 13,600
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 300 m/s
  • Special Function: Refuel
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive
The Resource Controller does not contribute to resource gathering in an active capacity, but rather functions as a mobile drop point for any Resource Collector that may be nearby. Since many missions feature resource fields that are located far away from the Mothership, having at least one Resource Controller in the fleet is usually prudent. Additionally, Controllers can refuel up to six Fighters and two Corvettes at a time.

Frigate Class

Kushan AppearanceTaiidan AppearanceStatistics & Description
Kushan Assault Frigate
Taiidan Assault Frigate

Assault Frigate

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 575 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute
  • Firepower: 82
  • Armor: 16,000
  • Coverage: 33% / 100%
  • Maneuverability: Low
  • Max. Velocity: 325 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive, Capital Ship Chassis
As something of an all-purpose Frigate ship, the Assault Frigate features four large turret emplacements backed up by two Plasma Bomb launchers. The biggest weakness of the Assault Frigate is Fighter class ships. While its turrets are capable of tracking and shooting down Corvette class vessels, Fighters are generally too fast for Assault Frigates to handle with any degree of consistency.
Kushan Ion Cannon Frigate
Taiidan Ion Cannon Frigate

Ion Cannon Frigate

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 650 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute
  • Firepower: 138
  • Armor: 15,000
  • Coverage: 3%
  • Maneuverability: Low
  • Max. Velocity: 300 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive, Capital Ship Chassis, Ion Cannons
Each Ion Cannon Frigate supports a single Ion Cannon that runs the entire length of the ship. The focused ion beam this weapon produces is extremely powerful, especially when used against Capital class ships that can't avoid it. Unfortunately, the Ion Cannon Frigate is all but useless against fast-moving Fighters and Corvettes due to its slow rate of fire and the small coverage area of its Ion Cannon.
Kushan Support Frigate
Taiidan Support Frigate

Support Frigate

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 425 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute, 5 seconds
  • Firepower: 28 / 36
  • Armor: 12,00
  • Coverage: 1% / 21%
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 450 m/s
  • Special Function: Repair & Refuel
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive
The Support Frigate is a significant upgrade to the Repair Corvette, able to accommodate the refueling needs of a large number of Fighters and Corvettes. In total, it can service ten Fighters and four Corvettes at once, and it can also repair any unit. Though the Support Frigate is equipped with a single gun, it is more or less a sitting duck if attacked, so it should always be accompanied by other ships.
Kushan Drone Frigate
  • (Kushan Only)

Drone Frigate

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 800 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute, 15 seconds
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 16,000
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 325 m/s
  • Special Function: Launch Drones
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive, Capital Ship Chassis, Drone Technology
While the Kushan's Drone Frigate does not have an attack per se, it is able to release and control a full complement of twenty-four automated drone Fighters when threatened. These drones automatically form a sphere around the Drone Frigate once activated, protecting it against attacks by Strike ships. Though powerful as a group, drones are individually fragile, and somewhat ineffective against larger ships.
  • (Taiidan Only)
Taiidan Defense Field Frigate

Defense Field Frigate

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 800 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute, 15 seconds
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 17,600
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 325 m/s
  • Special Function: Defense Field
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive, Capital Ship Chassis, Defense Field
Seemingly a Capital class version of the Taiidan Defense Fighter, the Defense Field Frigate has even more potential to impede incoming enemy fire. In fact, only ion beams, mines, and missiles can penetrate the deflective field that emanates from the Defense Field Frigate. Like its smaller cousin, it cannot attack on its own, but nearby allied units will be able to benefit from the field it creates.

Super Capital Class

Kushan AppearanceTaiidan AppearanceStatistics & Description
Kushan Destroyer
Taiidan Destroyer

Destroyer

  • Mass: 1,800 tons
  • Cost: 1,350 RUs
  • Build Time: 2 minutes, 30 seconds
  • Firepower: 347
  • Armor: 44,000
  • Coverage: 41% / 88%
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 315 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Super Capital Ship Drive
With twin Ion Cannons and a pair of massive turrets, the Destroyer is a behemoth fully fitted to take down other Capital ships with relative ease. It is the fastest and cheapest vessel in its class, and still plenty potent, so having a significant number of them on hand is usually not a bad idea. Destroyers are not well specialized to fend off Strike ships, though, so considerations should be made to protect them against smaller craft.
Kushan Missile Destroyer
Taiidan Missile Destroyer

Missile Destroyer

  • Mass: 1,800 tons
  • Cost: 1,500 RUs
  • Build Time: 2 minutes
  • Firepower: 450
  • Armor: 42,000
  • Coverage: 100%
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 295 m/s
  • Special Function: Missile Volley Attack
  • Required Tech: Super Capital Ship Drive, Guided Missiles
An anti-Strike variant of the standard Destroyer, the Missile Destroyer houses a guided missile system that is particularly devastating against Fighter ships and Corvettes. It is one of the few ships that has full coverage, negating the biggest advantage of Strike craft when used against Capital ships, namely their ability to attack from an angle that prevents counterattack. It can also fire a Missile Volley, which is useful against larger ships.
Kushan Heavy Cruiser
Taiidan Heavy Cruiser

Heavy Cruiser

  • Mass: 10,000 tons
  • Cost: 3,700 RUs
  • Build Time: 7 minutes
  • Firepower: 921
  • Armor: 90,000
  • Coverage: 100%
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 250 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Super Capital Ship Drive, Super Heavy Chassis, Heavy Guns
Both an expensive and a lengthy proposition to produce, the Heavy Cruiser is nonetheless a worthwhile investment by virtue of the sheer brute force it brings to bear. With four Ion Cannons and six heavy turrets, each nearly half the size of a Frigate, the Heavy Cruiser can make short work of nearly anything it encounters. On top of its offense, it is also extremely durable, with more than twice the armor of a Destroyer.
Kushan Carrier
Taiidan Carrier

Carrier

  • Mass: 10,000 tons
  • Cost: 2,000 RUs
  • Build Time: 4 minutes, 41 seconds
  • Firepower: 109
  • Armor: 72,000
  • Coverage: 100%
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 300 m/s
  • Special Function: Repair & Refuel
  • Required Tech: Super Capital Ship Drive, Super Heavy Chassis
The Carrier is something of a surrogate Mothership, as it can construct any ship up to Frigate class, and it can also house up to fifty Fighters and up to twenty-five Corvettes. It can also refuel ships that lack self-sustaining power and act as a drop point for any nearby Resource Collectors. While not the most powerful offensive unit in the game, it has the means to defend itself against small attacks, and it has plenty of armor as well.

Mothership Class

Kushan AppearanceTaiidan AppearanceStatistics & Description
Kushan Mothership
Taiidan Imperial Flagship

Mothership

  • Mass: 5,000,000 tons
  • Cost: N/A
  • Build Time: N/A
  • Firepower: 7,500
  • Armor: 160,000
  • Coverage: 60%
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 50 m/s
  • Special Function: Build Units
  • Required Tech: N/A
The linchpin unit of Homeworld, the Mothership can produce any other unit type in the game, provided the necessary technology has been researched, and can also repair, refuel, and house up to 300 Fighters and Corvettes. It has only modest offensive capability, but its hull integrity is impressive even when compared to other large ships. Only a concerted attack is able to bring down a Mothership.

Non-Combat Class

Kushan AppearanceTaiidan AppearanceStatistics & Description
Kushan Probe
Taiidan Probe

Probe

  • Mass: 25 tons
  • Cost: 30 RUs
  • Build Time: 6 seconds
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 800
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very High
  • Max. Velocity: 4,000 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: None
The Probe is an extremely cheap reconnaissance unit, the cheapest unit in the game, in fact. The inevitable downside comes in the form of its one-time use engine. Simply stated, the Probe can only be moved once, so it is imperative to make sure that it is placed in a useful position the first time around, as the player will have no recourse but to produce another Probe if they happen to poorly position the first one.
Kushan Proximity Sensor
Taiidan Proximity Sensor

Proximity Sensor

  • Mass: 25 tons
  • Cost: 50 RUs
  • Build Time: 6 seconds
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 800
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very High
  • Max. Velocity: 1,000 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Proximity Detector
Once the Proximity Detector is researched, the Proximity Sensor unit more or less replaces the Probe. Though slower than the Probe, it is still incredibly fast, and it improves upon the Probe in a number of areas. For one, it can be repositioned as many times as the player chooses, and furthermore it is able to detect cloaked units, which the Probe cannot. It is also only slightly more expensive than the basic recon unit.
Kushan Research Ship
Taiidan Research Ship

Research Ship

  • Mass: 300 tons
  • Cost: 700 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 7,500
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Low
  • Max. Velocity: 280 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: None
Research Ships exist to enable study into advanced technologies, which in turn unlock new types of vessels for production. The player can have up to six Research ships at one time, and they will automatically link up, improving their overall armor. Additional Research Ships can be used to advance multiple technologies simultaneously or to shorten the research time for upgrades by directing multiple ships toward a single goal.
Kushan Cloak Generator
Taiidan Cloak Generator

Cloak Generator

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 500 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 6,000
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 325 m/s
  • Special Function: Cloaking
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive, Cloak Generator
When activated, the Cloak Generator produces a cloaking field large enough to encompass two Frigate class ships. Vessels within its field cannot be detected by normal means, and will not reveal their location unless they choose to fire upon an enemy. After five minutes, the cloaking field dissipates, and the Cloak Generator must build up another charge before the unit can be used again.
Kushan Grav Well Generator
Taiidan Grav Well Generator

Grav Well Generator

  • Mass: 400 tons
  • Cost: 800 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 8,000
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 325 m/s
  • Special Function: Gravity Well
  • Required Tech: Capital Ship Drive, Gravity Generator
The Grav Well Generator creates a powerful field around itself that stops all Fighter and Corvette class ships from moving or attacking as long as the field remains active. These disabled ships can then be easily taken out by most vessels. Unlike the Cloak Generator, there is a finite limit to the Grav Well Generator's utility, as it will deactivate and self-destruct after three and a half minutes of use.
Kushan Sensors Array
Taiidan Sensors Array

Sensors Array

  • Mass: 300 tons
  • Cost: 800 RUs
  • Build Time: 1 minute, 20 seconds
  • Firepower: None
  • Armor: 4,500
  • Coverage: None
  • Maneuverability: Very Low
  • Max. Velocity: 280 m/s
  • Special Function: None
  • Required Tech: Proximity Detector, Sensor Array
The Sensors Array greatly augments normal sensor detection, providing the exact location of enemy units and their numbers. Its only real failing is cloaked ships, which it is unable to detect. It also provides additional information regarding other features within the environment, such as resource deposits. It can be an important tool for tracking enemy movements and assessing their overall strength.

Reception

The critical response to Homeworld upon release was overwhelmingly positive, with the game typically being rated in the ninetieth percentile or above by reviewers. In some cases, such as with GameSpot and PC Gamer's reviews, the game was also bestowed an additional "Editors' Choice" award. Homeworld also received a large amount of attention during yearly award discussions, coming away with "Game of the Year" awards from both PC Gamer and IGN, and "Best Strategy Game" during the 1998 and 1999 E3 Game Critic Awards. Homeworld was commonly commended for having a well-realized cinematic presentation, a novel 3D RTS system capable of simulating large-scale naval space battles, and a strong narrative to tie the two together. The large amount of praise Homeworld received from the gaming press led to a "Game of the Year Edition" rerelease, which included a 13-track "Special Edition" CD soundtrack.

Original PC System Specifications

Minimum:

  • System:PII 233 or equivalent
  • RAM:32 MB
  • Video Memory:4 Mb
  • Hard Drive Space:150 MB

Recommended:

  • System:PII 350 or equivalent
  • RAM:64 MB
  • Video Memory:12 Mb
  • Hard Drive Space:400 MB

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