Project Haven, a proven turn-based tactical game from Portugal

Project Haven, a proven turn-based tactical game from Portugal

Project Haven

Code Three Fifty One is a small Portuguese team with great passion and a specific goal: to create a high-quality tactical game that convinces players from all over the world. To achieve their goal, the three developers who make up the development team kicked off Project Haven. The game is coming in 2022, at a date to be defined, but we have already had the opportunity to try it in a demo version.

Here is our tried and tested Project Haven, a turn-based tactical game that will put us in the shoes of a group of mercenaries.

The Steel Dragons

Project Haven: four mercenaries against everyone We are the Steel Dragons, a group of mercenaries who live from one high-risk mission to the next : our interest? Earn as much money as possible and become one of the most requested squads in Haven City, the last city on Earth.

The Project Haven demo is quite short (three missions, totaling about a couple of hours) and it does not allow us to have a clear idea of ​​how the story of the game will evolve, which for now is barely sketched. However, we can analyze the setting, a set of urban and industrial areas full of waste, abandoned and destroyed buildings, flooded factories but also trendy clubs. We will fight, as far as we can see, in the most infamous areas of the city, but perhaps in the future there will also be space for more sought-after locations.

For now we have seen very little and, therefore, it is difficult to discuss of variety or graphic quality. Currently Project Haven does not strike from a stylistic point of view: the environments are generic and not very intriguing, even if technically already solid (we have not found bugs, slowdowns or problems of any kind).

Tactical gameplay

Project Haven also allows you to use explosives Obviously the first concern for a turn-based strategy player is that Project Haven is fun to play before it is interesting from the point of view narrative and stylistic. From this point of view, we can say that the game offers all the elements that one might expect from a similar product.

As mentioned, it acts in turn, with four characters who have the necessary action points to perform both movement and attacks. You have to act wisely and move from cover to cover, deciding the speed and position of the character (walking, running, crouching, stealth or lying on the ground). It is also important to pay attention to the direction the character is facing.

When you decide to shoot, in fact, the view passes from the top to the third person, like in a shooter: the player must aim at the enemy , but he can only do this if the character is facing in the right direction. Turning our mercenary around requires an action point and the same happens if you want to make him stick out of cover for a better view. If you then want to return to safety, you have to spend more action points. The gameplay of Project Haven is designed to often force the player to use all points for the movements, since the weapons of greater caliber are very expensive in terms of AP. It is therefore important to be careful not to reveal too much to the opponents without the possibility of attacking them first: the shots, even if they do not hit, in fact make you lose AP and this makes our next turn more complex to manage.


Project Haven switches to third person when shooting In addition to firearms, we have various disposable items, including first aid kits, tools to open closed doors and grenades (stun or explosive). Speaking of the latter, you should know that they must also be launched with a third-person view: this is a choice that we did not particularly appreciate, as it is often not easy to see where the grenade's firing arc will end. . We are still talking about a tactical game and, once we have the view of the enemy with the camera from above, we believe we should be able to throw the grenade without being limited by the third person view.

The firing system with Firearm, on the other hand, works correctly and also allows you to choose in every situation what types of shots to attempt: shooting in the head causes greater damage, damaging the arms decreases accuracy or even losing the weapon, while injured legs slow down the personage. The accuracy of the weapons is obviously not realistic and even a few meters a shot could miss the target, but it is part of that typical randomness of the genre. In addition, it is also possible to "ambush" the enemies, having an area under control by one of the characters who will automatically react to the passage of an opponent and will allow us to fire shots until we have PA, with the enemy blocked in half. of the movement.

We are also talking about combat arenas, urban scenarios of various kinds, made up of buildings, rooms, stairs, protections of various shapes and sizes. The areas in which we will have to clash with our enemies have already proved quite varied in terms of design. They are always very vertical and allow you to attack opponents from multiple positions. We can also shoot through ceiling skylights and windows, knocking down even weak walls or shooting through thin shields (with less damage, though).

Mechanics and Modes

Project Haven's Weapons they can be customized Project Haven offers a campaign mode (alone or in co-op), but also a skirmish mode with procedurally generated maps (against bots or other players). These 4-on-4 fights last around a quarter of an hour and are a great way to play without the commitment required by narrative mode.

The latter, while clearly dedicated to the game's story, includes more mechanics. First of all, the missions reward us with money that can be spent on buying grenades, magazines, weapons. The black market also allows us to sell excess items we have collected during missions (fallen enemies have equipment that can be recovered if you get close). A handful of guns were available in the demo, such as pistols, shotguns, SMGs and sniper rifles, as well as guards and grenades, but given the shortness of the test it is not possible to understand how important it will be to manage your finances in the game. Also, the most interesting part should be the ability to customize weapons with various upgrades, but the demo did not offer almost anything in this regard.

A Project Haven gameplay footage Much more relevant is the management of characters who get points to assign to stats and points to unlock passive skill levels (such as mastering certain types of weapons, increased melee damage and the like). The latter are unlocked only by leveling up the statistics, which in turn determine the number of AP, life points, maximum transportable weight and so on.

In the Project Haven demo it was not possible to access all the statistics and all the skills (at level 3 there was a block), but it is an RPG-style system that could expand customization and, in the advanced stages, guarantee more varied and reasoned tactical approaches. Initially the characters all look a bit alike, in fact, thus limiting the action, but on the basis of what we have seen it could be possible to create quite different mercenaries.

Project Haven, for now, seems a project from the basics solid, but still has a lot to prove. The demo does not allow you to try multiple elements (weapon upgrades, various skills ...) and lacks some elements (parts of the dubbing are provisional and computer generated for example). The environments are also somewhat generic in stylistic terms, even if the level design of the first areas is promising, thanks to excellent verticality and very structured environments.


The level promising design Weapon and character customization potentially interesting DOUBTS Stylistically uninspired The campaign is still an unknown Have you noticed any mistakes?

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