Returnal 2.0 update finally lets you save the game mid-run

Returnal Header art

Update 2.0 for Returnal is out today, finally adding the ability to save the game and resume a run through the roguelike shooter. This means that you can now quit the game or turn off your console completely and be able to pick up right where you left off.

Housemarque call this ‘Suspend Cycle’, and clarify that this is not the same as a regular ‘save game’ feature found in a most other games. As with other roguelike games that offer this ability, the game is creating a temporary suspended game state. This preserves the randomly generated version of the world, all of your gear, upgrades, health and more, but then deletes the suspended game state when you resume the game.

Housemarque notes that there are limitations to this. You cannot create a suspend point during boss battles, cinematics, first-person sequences or during combat scenarios.

This fixes one of the biggest criticisms that the game received around launch, especially as it conflicted with Housemarque pushing out updates and having to warn players to try and complete a run or turn off auto-updates, lest they lost their run. Even worse when one of the first major updates corrupted save files. Players decried the lack of saves, given that so many other notable roguelikes, such as the exemplary Hades, include suspended saves and didn’t lost any of the genre’s hard-nosed appeal.

Returnal PS5 Screenshot

Returnal 2.0 is also adding a photo mode. You can pause the game at almost any point (again, it’s limited in certain scenarios such as first-person sequences), and then lets you move the camera around, adjust focal distance, aperture, saturation, contrast and more, and then take your screenshot. You can also set different light sources in a scene, choose from filters, effect, frames and colouring options to get a really individual photo to share.

Here’s the full patch notes for Returnal version 2.0.1:

  • Suspend Cycle – Pause the cycle and resume your run later!
  • Photo Mode – Capture the bullet-hell action or the dark beauty of Atropos; compose your shot, apply your favorite filters, and share with the world!
  • This update also includes numerous bug fixes and quality-of-life improvements.

One of the first PlayStation 5 exclusives, Returnal launched in April to plenty of praise. Housemarque were lauded for their ability to combine the developer’s mastery of arcade shooters with a new third person shooter form and an engaging roguelike game structure.

In our Returnal review on PS5, we scored the game a masterful 9/10:

“It feels immensely satisfying to be sat here in 2021, eons after playing Super Stardust HD on PS3, and see just how far Housemarque has come. Offering a visual bullet hell spectacle, a showcase for the DualSense controller and a rewarding sci-fi narrative woven around the roguelike loop, we can say with unflinching confidence that Returnal is the PS5’s best game to date.

Source: Housemarque, PS Blog

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