Outpost:Haven : Review by Daniel Simpson
Outpost is a two dimensional top down shooter with three dimensional graphics game that follows the story of a space station under attack from menacing extra terrestrial foes. They have only one objective, to kill you! The game was made by Gaming your way and Luxregina The game is executed very well in some aspects. I felt the game play was solid and whole no gaps or points of laziness in the development. The player takes the job of a soldier, who is responding to a distress signal sent by the Outpost space station. Outpost is abandoned and in disarray, crates everywhere, key cards belonging to the former workers scattered on the floor. The looks this game is beautiful it has a huge attention to detail and everything seems to have exactly the same amount of effort in it: every wall, every floor tile, ALL menacing aliens trying to kill you… (It’s all good!).
During the game play you never know what’s hiding in the dark stay aware, watch your surroundings. In the game play the WASD keys are used for movement and the cursor, left mouse button to shoot. The player can use an arsenal of weapons that can be upgraded at special points using cash found all over Outpost.
What I loved:
The general look of the game, if you look at the backgrounds and sprites in the game, they are FANTASTIC. There is nothing that looks distinctly off colour or too bright, the polished graphics amazed me, this game shows the very cosmetic potential in flash gaming. This game shows console addicts that flash games are awesome too.
The mood and atmosphere was fantastic. The dark, serene, moody atmosphere had just the right amount of input (they didn’t just forget about atmosphere). The atmosphere is created by the dark visual filter, the empty sounds and lack of music. The constant sound is like the one of a giga-meter.
New things I’ve never seen before…there are several new things and mini concepts I’ve seen in this, for example the enemies, move crates when they walk. This does makes a BRILLIANT effect if you can’t see the enemy, but you can see what it’s doing, it scared me every time! Usually I’d expect in similar games of it’s nature to just simply pick up magazines, on the floor of the level. But in this game you go to special log on points where you log on to computers around the space station, to buy ammo, health packs, new guns, and upgrades for the new guns. The weapon switch system, in which you press the shift key to bring up a mouse operated weapon selection menu, never seen this before, it was really cool looking feature.
What I didn’t like and suggested improvements.
The brilliant coding, and superb visuals are indeed there BUT the game has a rather slow pace, a very slow pace, I just with that the character would move just a little bit faster. To me the effect would have really been enhanced. It can be argued that the slow pace was an intentional act but that is just my opinion.
I did love the Idea of the shift weapon selection is a cool feature and looks brilliant but a you use the WASD keys to move I think using the Q and E keys would be much more convenient method of weapon change and you wouldn’t have to stop the game to change weapon.
When you pause the game or get a message, you have your message device come up on screen (it’s basically a very futuristic Iphone!) it takes a couple of second to come up with the menu as there are some animations and other visuals before it starts up…it doesn’t rally sound very bad if you Imagine it but over and over it does annoy you. The rate in which the text can up in the message was again painfully slow, you can skip the text writing itself onto the screen by clicking but I still think it was rather slow. In the pause menu you see an array of icons on the lower portions of the device, you aren’t told what these things mean and there are no instructions of how to use the devise! To continue the game you have to click on the power button of the phone, which is tiny!
When I play flash games I notice that when I click on the game, the arrow keys and letter keys work as they would in the game but when I click outside of the game the arrow keys just scroll and the letter keys do nothing. Just out of user friendliness it would help if the game automatically paused if the player clicked outside the game that way you don’t have to waste ammo, when you re apply the controls.
I would have also liked to fight against humans too, alien life forms all the way through can get a little boring.
The wrap up
The game looks absolutely fantastic, visuals and graphics looked stunning for a flash game, the mood made the setting work very well too. On the other hand the user friendliness I think should have had a little more thought to them and a very detailed instructions page would have REALLY helped. I’ll give 8 out of 10. I think I should just say you should definitely play it and see what you think what I say is my opinion and you could have a completely different one :)
I just think it could have a really good sequel. But I just think the developers should take note of the things I listed above and slightly modify the looks and atmosphere just to keep the series fresh.