Kingdom Come: Deliverance's save system is good, actually | PCGamesN

Kingdom Come: Deliverance's save system is good, actually

Kingdom Come: Deliverance

Picture the scene: it is pitch black in Skyrim, the aurora borealis is swirling among the stars, the gods watching you from their home among the constellations. You are crouched near the blacksmith's, kitted out in thief's gear, lockpick at the ready. What is the first thing you do? You bring up the pause menu and you save the game, of course. If you are caught lugging out the fancy cuirass you spotted earlier then you will simply load up and try again. The outcome of your nighttime raid is predetermined.

Did you know: Kingdom Come: Deliverance is really good at making murder feel bad.

Kingdom Come: Deliverance is not so forgiving. Not only does it automatically save the game at set intervals, but manual saves are restricted. You can either go to bed and it will save automatically - which itself is on a cooldown so you cannot abuse it - or you can down an expensive alcoholic drink called Saviour Schnapps. Particularly in the early game, during which you live the life of a penniless peasant, this concoction is not easy to come by. Therefore, you are forced to live with your mistakes, and this makes your story feel more personal as a result.

Kingdom Come: Deliverance

This is an RPG that hands out tangible consequences for your actions. Everyone is a thief in Skyrim because there are no repercussions to your thievery if you save at the right time. Despite hundreds of hours in Skyrim’s world, I have never spent a second of that time in one of its prison cells for committing a crime. Go down the path of a thief in Kingdom Come, however, and there is a good chance you will get locked up. The choice of being a thief here is more complex than ‘do you want free stuff or not?’.

Likewise, if you get into a fight on one of Bohemia’s muddy, countryside roads, there is a chance you will be killed. Attached to that death is a loss of progress. This is good game design. Think of how Alien: Isolation leverages its save system to make the alien feel like a threat, rather than an obstacle. It is not just the creaking audio design that makes sneaking through Alien: Isolation’s space station so terrifying - it is the fact that death is a real setback. You can only save at dedicated stations, and a limited number of times per station depending on your chosen difficulty, and you could be killed at any moment while using them. It causes you to alter your playstyle, to be more cautious, and so it goes for Kingdom Come.

While on my way to one mission I meet a wayfaring knight. He challenges me to a duel, so I ask what we are fighting for: if he wins, he takes 80 of my 100 gold; if I win, I get his helmet. He is in full plate armour. I am in chainmail and I do not even have a helmet. I need that helmet, but a scruffy serf cannot afford to buy one like his.

Kingdom Come: Deliverance

I decide to go for it. Unfortunately, all my sword can produce is sparks when I strike the knight. I should have come armed with a weapon capable of ringing his metallic noggin with blunt force. With one smooth counter attack, the knight saps my health, leaving me to patch up my bleeding wounds on the roadside. I hand over my gold and the knight walks off, victorious.

In any other RPG, I would have saved before the encounter and either retried the fight until I got the victory, or avoided it altogether, losing nothing. Here, in Kingdom Come, I decide to try and win by other means. I creep up behind the knight as he struts off with my gold and choke him unconscious. I then strip him of all his belongings, leaving him in his underwear on the road, his head resting neatly in a muddy puddle. Night, night, knight.

When I arrive at my mission in my freshly-acquired plate armour, I am tasked with scouting out a bandit camp ahead of an upcoming raid. I wait until nightfall and try to sneak in but I am caught by a torch-bearing sentry. I retreat back into the woods to collect myself before searching for another way in. Morning comes and I find a little river crossing with a single guard keeping watch. He sees me approaching and runs over to shoo me off. I act as if I am going to comply, and then, remembering how I dealt with the knight, creep up behind him and choke him out as he returns to his post. I like choking people out, OK?

Kingdom Come: Deliverance

Once he is down, I carry his unconscious body into the woods, stab him to make sure he doesn’t wake up, then take all of his gear. I am a bandit now. The new disguise allows me to get into the camp undetected. I am questioned a couple of times, but my speech and intimidation skills allow me to weasel out of it - it feels great.

From there, I head to the camp’s cooking pot and drop some poison inside. Then I notice a bucket of arrows by a bandit. I set fire to them, alerting the camp, which fills me with alarm. A single enemy combatant is a big threat in Kingdom Come so an entire bandit camp is certain death. I call my horse, quickly set fire to another bucket of arrows, then return to base with my reconnaissance mission complete. In the upcoming mission there are fewer archers, fewer swordsmen, and we know exactly which route into the camp is the best. All thanks to Chokey McChoke face over here.

Still, I could have done more, and with an ordinary save system I probably would have. I would have kept trying different ways to infiltrate and weaken the camp by saving every few minutes until the stars aligned. Instead, I am left with this scrappy personal anecdote that feels more special as a result. That is why every complaint about Kingdom Come’s save system is wrong. If you disagree, that is fine, I’ll let you walk away feeling victorious if you want. Watch your back, though.

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JaM avatarShadowized avatarKirk McKeand avatarnu1mlock avatarJnx avatarSly_Koopa avatar+1
JaM Avatar
4 Months ago

fully agree. Save system is what makes this game special.. but they need to add save on exit at least.. sometimes you just need to quit the game for some reason, and its strange to lose all the progress because of it.

Kirk McKeand Avatar
4 Months ago

Aye, they're adding that in a patch soon!

Shadowized Avatar
4 Months ago

I think a lot of people just haven't realized you can use alchemy to make those save potions.

nu1mlock Avatar
4 Months ago

Indeed, and alchemy is basically an exploit for very large amounts of money. Especially when you get auto-crafting.

Sly_Koopa Avatar
3 Months ago

i'll watch it. . .tho, you couldn't never creep up on n choke me if your life depended on it. srsly, i'm too vigilant, observant n awoke for any of you lowly peasants to ever gain advantage over me. . .just saying.

Jnx Avatar
4 Months ago

So I guess you don't have kids or other often acute distractions? That system is a disgusting assumption that every gamer is living with their mom without any responsibilities.

star dust` Avatar
3 Months ago

that shit is ballocks

and furthermore:that ballocks is shit

And heres why:their is a very good reasons this shit was dropped after dai-katana tried it, because it was an incredibly stupid FUCKING idea.

It works even less for a sandbox game where you dont know whats going to happen and when, whats worse is that if an emergency pops up, your game crashes or some other bull shit occurs

you lose your progress.

And save corruption is a very real fucking threat, on every platform, so not being able to make back up saves is adding salt to the wound.

and to make this even worse, saving MAKES YOU DRUNK

you usually save WHEN YOU'RE ABOUT TO DO SOMETHING RISKY which is what people people would USE THE SAVES FOR

and being drunk absolutely FUCKS UP your...everything

it just fucks you up

You are being punished for saving

let me repeat this






and as for that alien:isolation argument

Do not dare bring up that shit in this because that game did it COMPETANTLY

That was a LINER


it was NOT a sandbox, it was NOT combat focused, it was NOT open world

it could do that because YOU HAD A VERY CLEAR PATH TO GO DOWN

dark souls doesnt let you save AT ALL so your every action has consequences

but heres the different:it autosaves




if you killed an enemy and suddenly your console EXPLODES

when you eventually get back to the game and get to the very same save, you will still be in the exact position you were last time, enemy is dead, you're fine, no need to save spam.


i cannot repeat this enough





if kids, or family, or emergency, or whatever happens, we should be able to press 3 buttons



confirm save

bish bash bosh, done, we may now turn off the game and go about our daily lives

but you know what this idea does?

it punishes you for having a god damn life and need to leave in a hurry

it doesnt even make SENSE that this is how you save

either give us spammable saves like fallout and skyrim


auto save every single fucking miniscual action we do like dark souls

do NOT take notes from an ANCIENT game

that had such a SHIT idea that IN THE GOD DAMN REMAKE


that was how bad it was, they actually just tossed the fucking thing

so if even georg romero knows it was a bad idea and ditched the concept

then maybe


you should take his advice


or, at most

make it an optional difficulty setting

so people who are masochists can suffer all they want

and people who havent played dark souls for so long that they can only get hard by smashing their fingers

can play the game like normal.

get a life

get a brain

get your head out your ass