Follow TV Tropes


Suspend Save

Go To

Quite frequently, game developers do not want you to be able to save anywhere and everywhere, especially while in battle. It encourages Save Scumming, and can lead to players getting stuck somewhere because their only save is in an area they can't proceed or escape from. On the other hand, some developers also want to let players leave the game at their leisure without the punishment of taking them back to the last Save Point.

How can they satisfy both requirements? The answer is implementing a Suspend Save system (sometimes called Quick Saves, instead, although that is also a term for keyboard mapped saving/loading in PC games). Suspend saves are a type of Save Game that has the following features:

  • Suspend saving is done by either:
    • Quitting the game, or...
    • Saving the game at suspend save points, which automatically exits the game. If suspend saving is done this way, quitting the game anywhere else won't suspend save.
  • There's only one suspend save file at a time (or one per save profile). Also, loading a suspend save file will delete it; it's single-use only.
  • Reloading from a standard save file (or starting a new game) deletes the suspend save file.

These are especially popular with handheld games, since a player may have to quit playing at a moment's notice and can't take the time to search for a Save Point. They are also popular as the only way to save in Roguelikes that have Permadeath implemented.


    open/close all folders 

    Action-Adventure Games 
  • Unlike the previous Devil May Cry games, the Bloody Palace mode in Devil May Cry 5 allows you to suspend your current floor progress via the pause menu and then continue at a later time. However, the floor must be free of enemies first. The suspend save is also treated as a checkpoint, which means going through the Mission Select menu or The Void overwrites it.
  • This feature was added to the non-Japanese releases of The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask. If the player doesn't want to go through the entire three-day timeline in one sitting, they have the option of saving and exiting at an owl statue, to resume later. The only way to save one's progress in the game permanently is to go back in time to the beginning of the "Groundhog Day" Loop. Notably, the addition of this feature actually forced them to sacrifice an available save file to make room for it, leaving the non-Japanese versions with only two save files rather than three. This was changed in the 3DS remake to make the owl statues permanent Save Points, and the only way to save the game.

    Adventure Game 
  • The original Japanese Ace Attorney trilogy for the Game Boy Advance let you suspend play during trials or investigations, but if your client was found guilty, you had to start from the beginning of the trial day. The Nintendo DS ports made these permanent saves, allowing players to save-scum, though even the English games still refer to it as suspending play. In the iOS port, if the app is closed during play, it will give you the option to resume from your suspend save the next time you open it.

    Misc. Games 
  • Pokémon Pinball uses a quicksave to prevent Save Scumming.
  • The Game & Watch Gallery games would automatically perform a quicksave upon pausing and delete it when resuming or exiting, allowing the players to pause and then shut off the game at the pause menu, and still pick up where they left off.
  • Implemented in many of Koei's Warriors type games. While many stages could be relatively short, with playtimes between 10 and 20 minutes, many others could be grueling slugfests, especially in big, complicated battles or some of the bonus levels. Time limits of up to 90 minutes were not unheard of. To avoid players being caught in the middle of a battle then needing to stop playing for some reason and risk losing all their work (especially for some of the harder bonus objectives required to unlock all manner of Infinity Plus One Swords), Koei added the Interim Save feature.

    Platform Games 

Almost every single roguelike has this as a part of their implementation of Permadeath. However, there are some that play with it to various degrees.
  • Absented Age: Squarebound: The game has an autosave feature for when players enter a map. However, if the map is in a Driftworld combat zone, loading the autosave will only work once. Any subsequent attempts to load it cause the player character to instantly die.
  • The Pokémon Mystery Dungeon games do this if you save while inside a dungeon, but also have Kangaskhan Statues as permanent Save Points.
  • Dungeons of Dredmor's game saves are restricted to this when Permadeath is enabled.
  • Dwarf Fortress has standard suspend saves for both game modes and adventurers can additionally retire, suspending their game over a longer period so a fortress or another adventurer can carry on from that history in the same world, then re-activated later. Eventually the ability to retire fortresses was added in the 2014 version of the game.
  • The story mode for Dragon Fin Soup allows traditional saves that can be performed and loaded at whim, unless playing on Hardcore. But the other two modes more closely emulate the classic Roguelike structure, and thus only allow suspended saves.
  • Enter the Gungeon allows you to save your current run at the elevator to the next floor. If you do, you'll be put back to the main menu, allowing you to resume the same run later starting from the next floor.

    Role-Playing Games 
  • Etrian Odyssey II: Heroes of Lagaard: Starting with this game, the Etrian Odyssey series features this as the only way to save while in a dungeon. The player can hard-save in town or next to a Geomagnetic Pole, but can only use the suspended save while exploring.
  • Fallout 4:
    • Survival Mode disables manual saving and only autosaves when you rest at a bed, but still keeps an exit save for when you quit the game. Loading the exit save does not delete it, it will just be inaccessible unless your game crashes—or you deliberately forced the program to close, if you want to cheat—and replaced by the next exit save you make. Dying will reload your last autosave (from a bed) and delete the Exit Save.
    • Patch added Exit Saves to the non-Survival difficulties a few months after launch. It works the same way.
  • This feature was added to all of the handheld ports and remakes of the NES-era Final Fantasy games.
  • Dragon Quest games also use this when you're in the field; you can only save properly in towns.
  • In Nostalgia (Red Entertainment), you can chose to quick save. Then you are asked to turn the system off, and it deletes the save when you choose "Continue" instead of "Load".
  • This was available in all versions but the European/Australian release of Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter.
  • Resonance of Fate. Places to save properly are rare, but this and the ability to retry battles for a nominal fee prevent that from being too much of a problem.

    Puzzle Games 
  • Ever Forward: The saves made by holding down the R key are only usable until the game has been quit, or the puzzle has been completed. Autosaves are made after completing each puzzle. If the Player quits mid-puzzle, they'll have to start the puzzle from the beginning.

    Shoot 'em Up 
  • 3D Classics: TwinBee lets you Quick Save at any time, but your save is deleted upon loading, meaning you have to start from the beginning if you get a Game Over. However, this can easily be cheesed with the Nintendo 3DS's built-in Save-Data Backup feature.

  • Mario Golf allowed a suspend save at any time, which could only be used once. The main game data was only saved upon finishing a course or minigame.
    • This would restart the course you were on, as opposed to where you left off, so it works really well for Save Scumming.

    Strategy Games 
  • Shining Force: Resurrection of the Dark Dragon allows you to quick-save during a battle.
  • Fire Emblem has had suspend saves since the first installment. In the three Game Boy Advance games only, the game updated the one quicksave any time you did anything of note, which was both very convenient and almost impervious to Save Scumming (the game will notably save the results of a battle right before it begins, so if you see your character die and quickly turn off the game and reload, it will reload before the battle starts, meaning you have to watch your character die over and over again until you either accept it and continue or restart the entire map). Shadow Dragon has a variant with mid-chapter save points that can be reloaded indefinitely. Suspend Saves can also be used at any time in Radiant Dawn in the hardest difficulty (on lower difficulties, they're just normal saves). The 3DS games use suspend saves in Classic Mode, and allow you to save whenever you want in Casual Mode.
  • Luminous Arc 2 features an interesting version. The game allows a single save slot during battles, and it can be saved and reloaded at whim. At first, this would appear to allow Save Scumming, but only to a certain extent: hit percentage outcomes are determined by the RNG prior to the player even taking a turn, so if a given character misses a target, reloading the same turn will result in that character always missing that target. The player can still decide to take actions based on the results of that turn, though - but only if the player saves before every single turn.
  • XCOM: Enemy Unknown has this feature enabled in certain difficulties. In Ironman mode, the game deletes the old and creates a new suspend save whenever you take an action as well as when you quit the game.

  • Cute Bite: Quick save and load buttons are accessible from the bottom left of the screen unless Save Scumming is trying to be avoided. There's also access to the last six quick saves in the save and load menu, allowing overwriting if a certain save wants to be made the quick one.

    Whole Systems 
  • This is how the Hibernate feature works on most computers, as well as the Safe Sleep in OS X. The OS makes a save state of the entire system and saves it to the hard disk, then powers off.
  • Virtual Console for Wii can suspend some games. It can suspend NES and SNES games, but not N64 games. This feature is less than the save states in other emulators, because it prevents Save Scumming. However, the newer suspend point option for the 3DS and Wii U allows the player to make a suspend point at any time, and they can restore it for any time. This works for every game, except the Pokemon games, to prevent cloning Pokemon.
  • Xbox Series X|S allow the user to do this with its "Quick Resume" function, which is available for most games. The number of save slots available overall depends on if you're suspending original Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox One, or Xbox X|S games. For example, if you're just using this for X|S games, you're limited to three save slots.

Alternative Title(s): Quick Save