35MM Xbox Series X Review

If you can stomach the dull gameplay 35MM provides a solid personal journey that ends with a melancholy finale.

By Grayshadow, Posted 18 Feb 2022

Just because a story doesn't have massive risks or global stakes doesn't mean it can have the same impact. Personal tales where the only gamble is your own accomplishment or failure can deliver deep narratives as found in 35MM. However, despite its impactful finale the poor technical quality and questionable gameplay choices often hamper this journey. 

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35MM stars Petrovich and his traveling companion as they venture through Russia during the aftermath of a terrible pandemic that has killed much of humanity. Petrovich made good on a deal and now his friend is helping get to a specific location. Those alive now live in isolated areas and survive by any means with empty houses littered everywhere.

The narrative is simple but well conveyed with the limited dialogue between everyone. Your actions lead to 1 of 3 endings but the game doesn't always telegraph when these happen. The finale does wrap everything up nicely and fits well with any of the endings you may have gotten.

The atmosphere and tone of 35MM is well done, with dark and gritty environments that often use gray or dull colors. This was a low-budget game so expect rigid animations such as enemies dying by defaulting into a specific right-up pose and falling over. Other problems include graphical issues such as textures failing to load, poorly rendered foliage, and assets disappearing. The game never crashed but it's hard to ignore when a door keeps disappearing.

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The gameplay is basic, much of the title has you exploring deserted homes for key items and supplies. You don't need to gather anything unless it's important to the narrative. Many times the game will limit where you can go with invisible walls or wait for your companion to catch up. The first half of this 3-hour adventure is just waiting for him to catch up to trigger the next scene.

Combat is dull and uneventful with only 2 combat-focused section that is more about locating ammo around the area than actually fighting.  There's 1 moment in the game really shines and creates tension but it's fleeting and that feeling never rises again as you're chased by unknown figures. The tension immediately disappears when you realize there's no threat of death but the initial scene was promising.

Movement is rigid and a stamina meter governs how long you can sprint but it's nothing too annoying. However, the use of QTEs is simply terrible. The icons for what button to press are way too small and I didn't notice them until I died. The inconsistency is annoying as well, during a fight I was unsure if what I was doing wrong until I tapped the button for a bizarre amount of time before succeeding.

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There are plenty of collectables that help provide information about the plague and those surviving. This does encourage you to keep investigating but picking up items is difficult. This is due to the game's poor targeting reticle that doesn't always understand when you're next to a pickup item. Often I had to crouch and get in real close before it would allow me to pick it up.

35MM, Game, Xbox Series X, Review, ?????? ??????, Gameplay, Screenshot, NoobFeed

35MM is a promising narrative experience with a complimentary tone that reflects the demanding world humans find themselves in. The problem is that everything else just doesn't work well, from the technical problems to the stale gameplay. If you can stomach the dull gameplay 35MM provides a solid personal journey that ends with a melancholy finale.

Review Copy Provided

Adam Siddiqui,
Managing Editor, NoobFeed

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General Information

35MM

50/100

Platform(s): Xbox One, PS4, PC
Publisher(s): Sometimes You
Developer(s): Носков Сергей, Noskov Sergey
Genres: Survival Horror
Themes: Post-Apocalyptic, Adventure
Release Date: 2016-03-27

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