Returnal is a very good game. Our review, which went up earlier today, called its moment-to-moment gameplay “sublime.” It’s currently sitting at 86 on Metacritic, which isn’t too shabby for a brand new series.
But as reviewer Mitchell Saltzman also noted, it has one particular sticking point — its runs are very long, and there’s no way to save in the middle of them. “That saps the desire to immediately return and try again after a failure, though not enough to grind it to a halt,” Saltzman writes.
I am VERY excited for Returnal but reading that the average run can last 90+ minutes and there is no way to save midway (aside from Rest Mode) makes me really wish that PS5 had Xbox’s Quick Resume feature.
I’ll work around it, of course, since the game looks awesome! But still.
— Brian Altano (@agentbizzle) April 29, 2021
This has sparked some discourse on Twitter as fans and reviewers alike weigh in on the decision to omit a midgame save. Defenders are saying that Returnal is a roguelite, and being able to save in the middle of a run is anthithetical to the genre. Besides, Hades doesn’t have a save, so what’s the big deal?
Detractors, meanwhile, note that runs in Hades frequently take only about 40 minutes, as opposed to the two to three hours that it can take to finish off a Returnal playthrough. Its scale is what makes it unique, as it’s one of the first real examples of a so-called “triple-A roguelite.” This makes it a unique experiment in the genre, but its size also works against it.
Ultimately, Housemarque also doesn’t necessarily need to introduce a situation where players can save scum there way through a run. A quick save system is probably sufficient.
No Plans for New Feature in Day One Patch
In preparation for tomorrow’s launch, Sony has released a Day One patch that introduces a smattering of improvements across the board. Quicksave is not part of the planned update. We reached out to Sony for an official comment.
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Until Housemarque changes its mind, you’ll just have to carve out a significant chunk of time to play Returnal. Think of it as a throwback to the days when you’d leave your NES running overnight because you were in the middle of a Super Mario Bros. 3 run and you didn’t have a save feature. Only in this instance, you’re putting your PS5 into sleep mode and hoping that it doesn’t decide to push a new firmware update while you’re away. Or worse.
All that aside, Returnal seems like a very cool mix of roguelite design and Housemarque’s trademark twitch gameplay. Fans will get to experience PS5’s latest exclusive when it arrives April 30.
Kat Bailey is a Senior News Editor at IGN.
Source: IGN Video Games All