One Last Breath Review (Xbox X/S)

In this 2.5D puzzle platformer, Nature takes on a humanoid form in a last-ditch attempt to restore balance to Earth. In the guise of Gaia – a feminine figure...
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One Last Breath – Release Trailer

In this 2.5D puzzle platformer, Nature takes on a humanoid form in a last-ditch attempt to restore balance to Earth. In the guise of Gaia – a feminine figure made of roots and leaves – you must reverse the apocalyptic renderings of Mankind.


In One Last Breath, Earth is in a miserable state, warped beyond recognition by the pride and ignorance of humanity. However, there are no humans to be found; destruction and remnants of technology are a shadow of their existence. Left in their place are foul mutations that only want to consume everything in their path.

One Last Breath Gaia Corn Field

This dying world isn’t completely lost though: among the rubble, animal populations are beginning to flourish. With Nature’s last breath, it is reincarnated in the form of Gaia. Gaia’s last (and only) task is to bring normality back to the planet, and along the way, she might discover what ultimately became of Mankind.


As Gaia is the embodiment of Nature, she can interact with plant life to manipulate her surroundings. By touching green cores growing out of the ground, Gaia can reshape giant vines. Giant vines are either blocking your exit, can be transformed into a bridge, or can be harnessed to move heavy objects. There’s something satisfying about moving humongous pieces of wood around the environment, using Gaia’s powers to solve problems.

As you navigate your surroundings, Gaia is constantly hunted by gaunt, pasty beasts that devour her when caught. As she cannot fight, she must be stealthy to avoid them. Oftentimes, running away is the best option, and this always generates tension. During these situations, your stress levels will hit the roof!

One Last Breath Gaia Stealth

Less of a gameplay element but a beautiful inclusion nonetheless is how wild animals are drawn to Gaia. These peaceful, sombre moments remind you what Gaia is trying to achieve, and it’s a small hint that not all hope is lost: if rabbits, foxes and deer can survive the harsh habitat that humans have left in their wake, then maybe there’s more life out there that can be restored.

There are 10 secret rooms to discover, each containing a mysterious machine that needs to be unplugged. If you can disconnect all of them, you will unlock an alternative ending to the game.

One Last Breath is easy to 100%, so if you’re the type of gamer who likes to unlock all achievements this is an easy opportunity to get 31 more under your belt.


One Last Breath tackles two themes in particular and it doesn’t take much work to peel back the layers to analyse them. The most obvious topic of discussion is humanity’s impact on the environment. One Last Breath foreshadows a possible future, albeit with a mix of Science Fiction and Horror influences to drive the message home. It’s a social commentary on how our current behaviour needs to change.

The second theme is exemplified through the mutated monsters that occupy the planet. They represent humanity’s selfish desires and their appearance – faceless beasts with three arms – that hold a mirror up to ourselves. One Last Breath begs us to change before it’s too late; to stop being destructive monsters to the only planetary habitat we have.

One Last Breath Gaia Eaten

There’s quite possibly a third theme which is hinted at on your way to reaching the secret alternative ending, which is more impactful than both of the final cutscenes. I won’t say any more than that as it’ll be a nice treat to discover for yourself.


Although the contextual storytelling throughout is great, neither of the endings was satisfying; the layers of visual depth are outstanding and it’s a shame the plot didn’t receive the same level of detail. I understand that atmospheric platformers are often left open to interpretation but One Last Breath didn’t deliver one last gut punch – not the one I was hoping to get anyway.

The scope of puzzles never varied much throughout One Last Breath. Besides dragging boxes to climb on and interacting with the environment to create bridges, the gameplay didn’t change much from start to finish. This essentially made One Last Breath an unchallenging game to play. That’s not necessarily a problem if you’re looking for a more casual palette cleanser but it’s worth mentioning in case you were expecting The Last of Us level of zombie encounters.

One Last Breath Gaia Jump

Besides those pessimistic niggles, there’s not much to complain about.

Final Score: 8/10

Should you play it? Yes

Why? One Last Breath sits comfortably between Inside and Planet of Lana and should be considered another triumphant example of the atmospheric puzzle platforming genre. If you love either of those games, you will want to play this one!

But… One Last Breath isn’t as scary as one would first imagine, so if you’re expecting a fear-inducing Horror experience you will not find one here.

Reviewed on Xbox Series S

Developer: Catness Game Studios, Maniac Panda Games

Publisher: Moonatic Studios

Playable on: Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4/5, Nintendo Switch, Steam, PC

Released: 28th March 2024

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