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As a rogue-like, the PS5 exclusive does not allow players to save their progress during gameplay, as the risk-reward dynamic – which upon death sees players sent back to the beginning of the game with virtually none of their items – is considered a key part of the genre.
However, many players have complained that gameplay sessions can last too long – sometimes several hours – and there’s no means to stop and save, outside of keeping the PS5 console in sleep mode.
One popular Reddit thread said of the issue: “While I understand that people are saying a save-file option would kill the rouge-like character because of the ability to just reload I have to say some people aren’t able to play without save-options!”
It continued: “My first run lasted nearly 2 hours and it got me straight to Biome 2. The time when I reached the new Biome was 3am for me and I wanted to go to sleep cause I had to work the next day…
“Since I don’t know exactly when I’m able to play the next time I always turn down my consoles!! (also because of the power draining while these are in rest mode!!) The point is… I had to get myself killed in the start of the second Biome while I had a fantastic gun, full health, a nice parasite and some good artifacts!”
The thread, which at the time of publishing has over 700 comments, goes on to suggest an auto-save which deletes upon death.
On Friday, developer Housemarque acknowledged the Reddit thread, writing: “We hear the community and we love you all. Nothing to announce now, but keep playing and enjoying the challenge as you can!”
Returnal released for PlayStation 5 on Friday. In our Returnal review, critic Chris Scullion wrote: “Returnal’s constant action and clever semi-procedural structure make it an engaging adventure, not to mention a visually stunning one.
“The lack of any difficulty levels may unfortunately exclude less experienced gamers, but anyone who doesn’t mind dying a bunch of times will thoroughly enjoy themselves.”