Stop me if you've heard this one before; you, a strapping and well armored space military type fellow, are sent to a remote outpost in space on what you think will be a routine mission but instead winds up containing your worst fear. Bugs... in... spaaaaaaaaace! Yes, in the action-packed shooter from Squize, GamingYourWay and Luxregina, Outpost:Haven, you discover that the titular location has been overrun with angry bug monsters, flickering lights, sudden noises, cryptic messages scrawled in blood, and lots of guns for you to fire into the air while going "Arrrrr!" But while Outpost:Haven may feel more than a little familiar, it's still an exceptionally well presented and fun game for fans of corridor-crawling monster blast-fests.
Use the [WASD] keys to move (there's an option to switch this when you start a new game) and the mouse to aim and shoot, swapping available weapons with the [shift] key and tapping the [spacebar] to reload when necessary. Hitting [P] will bring up your menu and super futuristic PDA, which lets you browse through messages and statistics, and view the map in full when you find one. Shooting attacking monsters has the added benefit of keeping you alive, but it also gains you experience points that will rank you up, which in turn allows you to purchase better equipment at the special terminals scattered throughout the area. Throughout each level, you'll find cash, ammo, health, messages, and keycards lying around. Keycards open certain doors, but in a pinch you can always take the knucklehead approach and blast them open. Just stay on your toes; you have three lives on each level, and after those run out, you'll have to start the stage all over again.
Despite being rendered in Itty-Bitty-Vision that may not be kind to your eyes for long periods, Outpost:Haven is mostly a very good looking horror shooter packed with attention to detail and lovingly crafted carnage. While attempts to craft a story fall somewhat flat due to how scant the otherwise interesting narrative is, the game offers up some surprises with creative use of lighting, sound, and even the environment. Of course, the game isn't particularly scary. It's hard to be intimidated by beasties no matter what sounds they make when you're staring down at them from a God-like perspective that reduces them to tiny little skittering specks of colour on a small playing area. Still, as a shooter Outpost:Haven is more than adeptly made, even if it doesn't offer a whole lot of innovation, and if you enjoy monsters and the blasting thereof, especially while wearing super space power armor, then this might just be the cowbell you're looking for.