Whats up with these games with restricted saving?

So I was playing Kingdom Come Deliverance for a while, then I put it down and never came back to it. Super fun game while it lasts but failed to provide enough variety for me to come back to once I mastered parrying.

Anyway, I was wondering about the save system. Why do people like this? Where you have to either rely on autosaves or pick up a reasonably expensive in the early game drink to save. And other similar games that dont let you save when you want to.

I see people online defending it. The only thing I can think of is being anti save scumming to increase the difficulty, but even thats arguably false, you arent increasing difficulty just making things take more time after you die. If you want to play ironman style why dont you just exercise some self control and never go back to old saves after making mistakes?

The philosophy of saving I always took was to save often and in different slots. Especially after playing Oblivion back in the day, why? Because of glitchs. You protect yourself from glitchs with lots of saves. You also make it easier if you ever want to replay a certain fun bit of a game for whatever reason. I just dont get it.

There are practical reasons too, like having things happen in the real world that you have to attend to, or trying to have a strict cut off time for sleeping in the night or whatever. It just rubs me the wrong way to be denied choices.

That save system is the only reason I'll never play that game. It's the worst possible choice because you have no option but to play it that way, instead of simply giving players the choice of a "realistic" playthrough, or a "fun" one that the people of this generation are used to playing games. Which is pretty garbage cause PC players can just go "Nah, your design choice was fucking dumb, and I'm going to FIX it with a mod that lets me save when I want to."

In the age of terabyte hard drives, there's no reason at all that open world games, or any other should restrict saves in any degree. I should be able to make 200+ different save files if I want to, don't limit me to 10 that I have to rotate through to feel safe, or some games that say "fuck you" and give you 1.

DeadProxy:
That save system is the only reason I'll never play that game. It's the worst possible choice because you have no option but to play it that way, instead of simply giving players the choice of a "realistic" playthrough, or a "fun" one that the people of this generation are used to playing games. Which is pretty garbage cause PC players can just go "Nah, your design choice was fucking dumb, and I'm going to FIX it with a mod that lets me save when I want to."

In the age of terabyte hard drives, there's no reason at all that open world games, or any other should restrict saves in any degree. I should be able to make 200+ different save files if I want to, don't limit me to 10 that I have to rotate through to feel safe, or some games that say "fuck you" and give you 1.

For particular egregiousness, not only does KC:D have that goofy save system, its also incredibly prone to full game crashes and nonsensical bugs. Its not even a question of commitment to choices or a lack of skill, its usually the game breaking itself that merits the need for manual saves. (It also does have autosaves before half the major choices anyways).

But yes, there's no real reason other then head-entrenched-within-buttocks sturbborn pretentiousness not to have save states. I've compared the debate before to the whole "artistic" panic you had with bands when CDs came about and god forbid someone might skip to songs they wanted to hear instead of having to futz about through an hour of whatever flatulence may have been recorded alongside it.

Fieldy409:

I see people online defending it. The only thing I can think of is being anti save scumming to increase the difficulty, but even thats arguably false, you arent increasing difficulty just making things take more time after you die. If you want to play ironman style why dont you just exercise some self control and never go back to old saves after making mistakes?

Spot on. I've always argued against the ridiculous time-wasting save systems of games like Dark Souls and Hollow Knight, and it's a shame to see this system spreading. All it does is make it take longer to get back to where you were before.

If I had my way, every game would be save-at-will.

Blood Brain Barrier:

Fieldy409:

I see people online defending it. The only thing I can think of is being anti save scumming to increase the difficulty, but even thats arguably false, you arent increasing difficulty just making things take more time after you die. If you want to play ironman style why dont you just exercise some self control and never go back to old saves after making mistakes?

Spot on. I've always argued against the ridiculous time-wasting save systems of games like Dark Souls and Hollow Knight, and it's a shame to see this system spreading. All it does is make it take longer to get back to where you were before.

If I had my way, every game would be save-at-will.

Dude Dark souls autosaves after every action you take. Wtf are you on about? Unless you are talking about the bonfire check points which is an entirely different thing, bonfires are basically fast travel points.

OT: I prefer save points personally.

A) It actually makes me give a shit about dying.

B) It prevents save scumming.

C) It helps give a sense of Progress. And helps me remember where i was and what i was doing once reloaded.

Either way i'm no so petty as having the save system ruin a game for me.

Lufia Erim:

Blood Brain Barrier:

Fieldy409:

I see people online defending it. The only thing I can think of is being anti save scumming to increase the difficulty, but even thats arguably false, you arent increasing difficulty just making things take more time after you die. If you want to play ironman style why dont you just exercise some self control and never go back to old saves after making mistakes?

Spot on. I've always argued against the ridiculous time-wasting save systems of games like Dark Souls and Hollow Knight, and it's a shame to see this system spreading. All it does is make it take longer to get back to where you were before.

If I had my way, every game would be save-at-will.

Dude Dark souls autosaves after every action you take. Wtf are you on about? Unless you are talking about the bonfire check points which is an entirely different thing, bonfires are basically fast travel points.

OT: I prefer save points personally.

A) It actually makes me give a shit about dying.

B) It prevents save scumming.

C) It helps give a sense of Progress. And helps me remember where i was and what i was doing once reloaded.

Either way i'm no so petty as having the save system ruin a game for me.

If it saved after every action you take, then dying would take you back to your last action. Which would be kind of absurd, since dying during a boss fight you would be continually resurrected with a tiny sliver of health.

Blood Brain Barrier:

Lufia Erim:

Blood Brain Barrier:

Spot on. I've always argued against the ridiculous time-wasting save systems of games like Dark Souls and Hollow Knight, and it's a shame to see this system spreading. All it does is make it take longer to get back to where you were before.

If I had my way, every game would be save-at-will.

Dude Dark souls autosaves after every action you take. Wtf are you on about? Unless you are talking about the bonfire check points which is an entirely different thing, bonfires are basically fast travel points.

OT: I prefer save points personally.

A) It actually makes me give a shit about dying.

B) It prevents save scumming.

C) It helps give a sense of Progress. And helps me remember where i was and what i was doing once reloaded.

Either way i'm no so petty as having the save system ruin a game for me.

If it saved after every action you take, then dying would take you back to your last action. Which would be kind of absurd, since dying during a boss fight you would be continually resurrected with a tiny sliver of health.

No see, you're confusing the issue. Dark Souls autosaves constantly. Dark souls does not treat death the same way as other games. Saying Dark Souls doesnt autosave because you dont go back to before you died, is missing the core mechanics of the game.

The progress you've made and lost is constantly autosaved. There is very little need to manually save. Bonfires are arbitrary checkpoints, and any manual save and quit made away from a bonfire will save the game AS IS, but also teleport you to the last used bonfire upon next load.

I mean, Im all for being critical of some of the features DS has popularised, but not if it means blatantly misrepresenting the game.

Double post thanks to a 503 error.

Elijin:
The progress you've made and lost is constantly autosaved. There is very little need to manually save. Bonfires are arbitrary checkpoints, and any manual save and quit made away from a bonfire will save the game AS IS, but also teleport you to the last used bonfire upon next load.

It doesn't teleport you on next load, if I am remembering correctly. As long as you're not in combat, you can log out at any time and log right back in to where you were, even if you are ass deep in a dungeon far from a bonfire, and there will be no respawns or anything. That's also how you pause the game... you log out, because there is no pause function, and if you go afk, even if you're in a currently safe spot, you can be invaded and killed.

Regarding OP, every game draws a line somewhere to protect you from the temptation to save scum. For example, most games won't let you save in the middle of a boss fight, because you could cheese through the fight a few hits at a time. The inability to save scum is a good thing, in my opinion, because it makes death more meaningful which creates a sense of danger and adds tension to the game, enriching the experience.

At the end of the day, it's just another design decision that makes a game more or less challenging for players. Same as easy modes or a lack thereof, which we've had 20-page threads on here heatedly debating. I think ultimately the developer has every right to implement features that force challenge upon players and thus arguably make for a more rewarding experience. Others will disagree, and demand the freedom to manipulate games in any way they see fit, even if it means breaking and ruining their own game experience.

Lufia Erim:
Dude Dark souls autosaves after every action you take. Wtf are you on about? Unless you are talking about the bonfire check points which is an entirely different thing, bonfires are basically fast travel points.

Sure, Dark Souls is technically saving all the time, but when you die you go back to a bonfire and all the monsters respawn, so the playing experience is much the same as if you restored from a checkpoint.

I am enjoying Alien Isolation but man does this save system make the game more frustrating than it has to be for that same reason (you are required to go to certain rooms in order to save where they have these save points, there is no other way to save or if there is, the game has neglected to mention it).

I can get why game devs might think it's a good idea (Make death mean something or some other nonsense) but all it does is make me have to replay 20 minutes of a section because a Xenomorph showed up to turn me into a shish kabob.

I suppose when I was 12 this wasn't such a big deal when I had nothing better to do with my time but I no longer have the time or the patience to deal with this kind of thing now. I got shit to do game devs, stop wasting my time with this BS.

Yeah Kingdom Come was a fun, but that save item was bullshit. Its not a limited save system in that there is a limited number of saves allowed, its that you need a specific item to save, and its not an cheap item or one that can easily be crafted.
But the game was fun, especially after I got a hammer and learned no one was immune to wild flailing hammer blows.

Silentpony:
Yeah Kingdom Come was a fun, but that save item was bullshit. Its not a limited save system in that there is a limited number of saves allowed, its that you need a specific item to save, and its not an cheap item or one that can easily be crafted.
But the game was fun, especially after I got a hammer and learned no one was immune to wild flailing hammer blows.

The biggest problem with the game is the glitched quests. I decided to take an indefinite break from it after a patch corrupted my progress in one, and I had to go back a few hours to an earlier patch.

As for the save system, it hasn't been much of a problem for me. They did it to deter save scumming for sure, which definitely enables playing more carelessly, but I've never had the game all-out crash either. They added the Save&Quit option if people don't want to wait for checkpoints or buying Saviour Schnapps. There is also a mod to save anytime that was probably the first thing modded in.

I really like the game but they really need to clean up the bugs yet. I know they fixed hundreds of issues already but to have patches literally break quests is bad quality control. I'm not touching it again until all the quests are certified playable.

Suppose, for a moment, that you ran an art museum. What degree of control would you allow an artist in deciding how their work was to be displayed? Perhaps a painter wants to evoke a response that only comes from seeing the picture at the top of a steep staircase after a hard climb. Maybe the sculpture only sends the message when viewed under a blacklight. Peradventure, the composer's work only conveys the full meaning when heard in a room under sixty degrees. It might come to be that hidden jets periodically squirting perfumed oils into the room are a vital part of the dance routine. I-can't-think-of-any-other-synonyms-off-the-top-of-my-head, the movie only makes its impression on a mind that's just finished a slice of cheesecake. Where do you draw the line?

Maybe a game isn't art. Or maybe it is, but you're not playing it as one- fair enough. But to claim that there's no reason for a developer to make a given change to their game is to claim that there's no reason to give an artist control over their own art.

That said, it does seem to me to be kind of a stupid decision to not at least include the option to save anywhere, especially in a game you know to be somewhat buggy or unstable.

Restricted saving can help to place weight and gravity on your own actions, and encourage cautious play. This obviously comes at the cost of running around and doing whatever you want, so it's definitely not suitable for all games. In fact, I'd say there aren't that many games it would be suitable for.

Resident Evil is one such (ink ribbons and such).

Bad Jim:
Sure, Dark Souls is technically saving all the time, but when you die you go back to a bonfire and all the monsters respawn, so the playing experience is much the same as if you restored from a checkpoint.

That's the core of the gameplay and it ties in to multiple mechanics. Souls, both exp and currency are dropped on death and need to be retrieved (like corpse running in WoW); a second death before retrieving them means they're permanently lost. What this does is make you think about how many you're carrying, how many you need to level/buy an item, how far you are from a bonfire/boss (since resting at a bonfire resets the enemies) and more. It means the longer you play, the more you have to lose. It creates a sense of value, since you've spent time and effort to acquire them and death has meaning.

It's the combination of valuing your life, limited healing/resources and challenging enemies that make the game satisfying. Everyone will lose souls, its a given, but it makes you get better, it makes you level up your character/weapon, learn the timing and enemy positions and patterns. It isn't fair to the game to criticise its "save system" when losing souls and respawning at a bonfire is a core element of the game.

However, if you really wanted to, you could "save and exit" and backup your save file (on PC at least) and you can restore it easily if one was of a mind to save scum (tho must be done offline or risk softban). I've used the trick to farm a red phantom in Aldia's Keep in DS2 that only appears once per NG cycle (ie. doesn't respawn) and drops RNG loot. There's two of them in the game IIRC, but that one drops the Monastary Scimitar :-)

This Kingdom Come item doesn't sound like much fun. I wouldn't mind an in-universe save function if it was readily available. I'd probably cheat for the gold to just buy the item early and play with it. The challenge should come from the game, not from QoL issues forcing one to replay an hour of lost progress. That would drive me a bit mad.

Recusant:

Maybe a game isn't art. Or maybe it is, but you're not playing it as one- fair enough. But to claim that there's no reason for a developer to make a given change to their game is to claim that there's no reason to give an artist control over their own art.

That said, it does seem to me to be kind of a stupid decision to not at least include the option to save anywhere, especially in a game you know to be somewhat buggy or unstable.

They're clearly free to make their art and games how they want, but just cause something is done in the vein of artistic freedom doesn't mean it's a good idea. Someone could make some beautiful scenic artwork that would make you cry just looking at it, but they painted it with their own shit, and no matter how beautiful the art is, it's still made of literal shit. Why put the effort into creating something when there are objectively better materials and methods to make your craft with? When it comes to video games, you're creating a freaking universe built on specific rules that you choose to put in, so why build it to be so strict and rigid, when you have all the methods and ideas that exist in the current landscape to choose from and implement, with no real limitations, outside the real world issues of time and money. The game actually has the mechanic to save anywhere, and someone made the decision to have it be a limited, inconvenient feature that hampers your gameplay, because it makes you drunk and costs resources.

Recusant:
Suppose, for a moment, that you ran an art museum. What degree of control would you allow an artist in deciding how their work was to be displayed? Perhaps a painter wants to evoke a response that only comes from seeing the picture at the top of a steep staircase after a hard climb. Maybe the sculpture only sends the message when viewed under a blacklight. Peradventure, the composer's work only conveys the full meaning when heard in a room under sixty degrees. It might come to be that hidden jets periodically squirting perfumed oils into the room are a vital part of the dance routine. I-can't-think-of-any-other-synonyms-off-the-top-of-my-head, the movie only makes its impression on a mind that's just finished a slice of cheesecake. Where do you draw the line?

Maybe a game isn't art. Or maybe it is, but you're not playing it as one- fair enough. But to claim that there's no reason for a developer to make a given change to their game is to claim that there's no reason to give an artist control over their own art.

That said, it does seem to me to be kind of a stupid decision to not at least include the option to save anywhere, especially in a game you know to be somewhat buggy or unstable.

Suppose the art gallery owners didn't allow you to leave whenever you wanted to, and when you did leave and came back for a second visit, you were obliged to revisit some of the artworks you had already seen?

That is equivalent to what some of these games do.

Recusant:

Maybe a game isn't art. Or maybe it is, but you're not playing it as one- fair enough. But to claim that there's no reason for a developer to make a given change to their game is to claim that there's no reason to give an artist control over their own art.

Wouldn't that imply any form of critic for media is an attack? Im not going to go over there and abuse them for doing what they want, but I can still call it silly.

So I would argue my use of saves can be to savor their art. In a second playthrough of a game I tend to make deliberate saves in areas I enjoyed, like right before my favourite battle or to take another option.

Anyway To be honest its interesting that people went straight to discussing Dark Souls, that is interesting because that was kinda a blind spot for me. I freaking love those games. Prehaps I could say that the whole game is designed in a very different way to most games, you can quit and come straight back and gamebreaking glitchs seem to be rare.

I've been playing a lot of Rimworld lately. Thats a great game, and with its permadeath of characters mechanics, much like Xcom, feels like the sort of game where there is a huge temptation to save scum, but it is far more interesting not to. Yet the save system does nothing to stop you and its up to you as a player to stick with your mistakes. The game feels much more interesting and difficult dealing with the losses. So what do I do? Short of a complete wipe I try to reist the urge to save scum.

I have occasionally but I ratiionalised that more as the characters doing something stupid because I missed a point(if you play the game you know its control system is pretty unique) like having a character try to play horseshoes while somebody shoots at them lol.

Bad Jim:

Lufia Erim:
Dude Dark souls autosaves after every action you take. Wtf are you on about? Unless you are talking about the bonfire check points which is an entirely different thing, bonfires are basically fast travel points.

Sure, Dark Souls is technically saving all the time, but when you die you go back to a bonfire and all the monsters respawn, so the playing experience is much the same as if you restored from a checkpoint.

Yes. But the bonfires are checkpoints not saves. If you use or discover items in between bonfires and quit the game mid way, you'll still keep those items because it is constantly saving. Same with experience etc... Bonfires are checkpoints not saves. You're not losing character progress because you're game is constantly auto saving. Which was my point.

The penalty of having to repeat a long segment if you fail is an easy way to increase tension (it mechanically raises the stakes). I realized that with the Final Fantasy III DS remake. The final part is a really long segment with 2 dungeons, 5 boss battles before the final boss, and no save points in the way. Fortunately, the remake has quick-save (you can save in the dungeons, but loading erases the quick-save) so you can take a break (the original had no such luxury though). So the boss battles at the final dungeon were really tense because the stakes just kept getting higher after each victory.

FFIII also shows the downside of the system. The penalty of total loss is very punishing (Soulborne games at least lets you keep your items and give you the chance to recover your souls/blood echoes). A game not properly designed for such penalty (or just propense to crash at random times) is just an example of bad design.

tippy2k2:
I am enjoying Alien Isolation but man does this save system make the game more frustrating than it has to be for that same reason (you are required to go to certain rooms in order to save where they have these save points, there is no other way to save or if there is, the game has neglected to mention it).

I can get why game devs might think it's a good idea (Make death mean something or some other nonsense) but all it does is make me have to replay 20 minutes of a section because a Xenomorph showed up to turn me into a shish kabob.

I suppose when I was 12 this wasn't such a big deal when I had nothing better to do with my time but I no longer have the time or the patience to deal with this kind of thing now. I got shit to do game devs, stop wasting my time with this BS.

Alien: Isolation is one of my favorite survival horror games. Still, I affectionately nickname it "Alien: Frustration"

CaitSeith:

tippy2k2:
I am enjoying Alien Isolation but man does this save system make the game more frustrating than it has to be for that same reason (you are required to go to certain rooms in order to save where they have these save points, there is no other way to save or if there is, the game has neglected to mention it).

I can get why game devs might think it's a good idea (Make death mean something or some other nonsense) but all it does is make me have to replay 20 minutes of a section because a Xenomorph showed up to turn me into a shish kabob.

I suppose when I was 12 this wasn't such a big deal when I had nothing better to do with my time but I no longer have the time or the patience to deal with this kind of thing now. I got shit to do game devs, stop wasting my time with this BS.

Alien: Isolation is one of my favorite survival horror games. Still, I affectionately nickname it "Alien: Frustration"

The problem is that it is quickly going from "Alien: Frustration" to "Alien: Fuck this shit I'm out".

There is a really good game in here but it's hard to stay excited when I've had to replay the same twenty minute section three times now because the Xenomorph is camping the damn door I need to go through and won't leave.

I'm sticking with the game for now but I don't know how many more times I can get killed and have to replay an entire damn section again before I just say I'm out and go play a game that doesn't waste my time.

EDIT: Yup, "Aliens: Fuck this shit I'm out" is in. I have replayed this same stupid section four God damn times now because the asshat looks at my locker, walks away, leaves the area, and then comes right back. I'm playing peekaboo with this fucker until it eventually gets bored and murders me. This is just tedious and boring and I wonder if everyone got a different game than I did because I do not see how this game is any good...

EDIT 2 ELECTRIC BOOGALOO: So I had the game on HARD cause it said you should play at that level. I flipped it to Normal and will give it another try...

tippy2k2:

EDIT: Yup, "Aliens: Fuck this shit I'm out" is in. I have replayed this same stupid section four God damn times now because the asshat looks at my locker, walks away, leaves the area, and then comes right back. I'm playing peekaboo with this fucker until it eventually gets bored and murders me. This is just tedious and boring and I wonder if everyone got a different game than I did because I do not see how this game is any good...

EDIT 2 ELECTRIC BOOGALOO: So I had the game on HARD cause it said you should play at that level. I flipped it to Normal and will give it another try...

From what I could tell (and in the locker-survival genre I usually end up spending a good chunk at some point just eyeballing how nonsensical the NPCs act) it is more or less just an awful RNG type AI.

As to "Tedious and boring", well I'd have to join you on that one. I"d already started tuning out on these games when I saw the inevitable lockers (because multi-route stealth design is too hard apparently, so nonsensical plain sight camoflauge must exist), and that one way overstays its welcome by a long shot (And any tension goes out the window once you start watching the alien start having pathfinding misfires)

tippy2k2:

CaitSeith:

tippy2k2:
I am enjoying Alien Isolation but man does this save system make the game more frustrating than it has to be for that same reason (you are required to go to certain rooms in order to save where they have these save points, there is no other way to save or if there is, the game has neglected to mention it).

I can get why game devs might think it's a good idea (Make death mean something or some other nonsense) but all it does is make me have to replay 20 minutes of a section because a Xenomorph showed up to turn me into a shish kabob.

I suppose when I was 12 this wasn't such a big deal when I had nothing better to do with my time but I no longer have the time or the patience to deal with this kind of thing now. I got shit to do game devs, stop wasting my time with this BS.

Alien: Isolation is one of my favorite survival horror games. Still, I affectionately nickname it "Alien: Frustration"

The problem is that it is quickly going from "Alien: Frustration" to "Alien: Fuck this shit I'm out".

There is a really good game in here but it's hard to stay excited when I've had to replay the same twenty minute section three times now because the Xenomorph is camping the damn door I need to go through and won't leave.

I'm sticking with the game for now but I don't know how many more times I can get killed and have to replay an entire damn section again before I just say I'm out and go play a game that doesn't waste my time.

EDIT: Yup, "Aliens: Fuck this shit I'm out" is in. I have replayed this same stupid section four God damn times now because the asshat looks at my locker, walks away, leaves the area, and then comes right back. I'm playing peekaboo with this fucker until it eventually gets bored and murders me. This is just tedious and boring and I wonder if everyone got a different game than I did because I do not see how this game is any good...

EDIT 2 ELECTRIC BOOGALOO: So I had the game on HARD cause it said you should play at that level. I flipped it to Normal and will give it another try...

That's why once you get the flamethrower, the game gets so much more manageable.

 

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