Although many publishers have been hyping their current-gen to next-gen upgrade programs, they may have left one important detail out: save files. It’s not something that comes to mind when one first thinks of switching from a PS3 version to a PS4 version, but apparently it’s something we should have.
While not an across-the-board problem — at least not yet — new reports are surfacing that state the single player save files for some of this year’s biggest cross-gen titles (available on both current and next-gen consoles) will not be transferrable between console generations. Some saved elements will carry over, though; just not campaign progress.
This, according to several publishers including Electronic Arts and Activision, who say that multiplayer progress will be preserved from one console to the next, while single player progress will not. Games listed with such an issue include Battlefield 4, Call of Duty: Ghosts, and Assassin’s Creed 4.
The good news is that both Battlefield 4 and Call of Duty: Ghosts will likely have short campaigns, leaving plenty of time for gamers to plow through them before the PS4 or Xbox One hit stores. However, those players who upgrade from an Xbox 360 to an Xbox One version in the hopes their campaign progress will carry over are out of luck.
The same goes for Assassin’s Creed 4, which is the more disappointing game out of the bunch. Typically, it takes upwards of 30 hours to complete the single player campaign in an Assassin’s Creed game, and even longer to get 100% progress. We highly doubt that gamers want to start from scratch when upgrading. Moreover, Ubisoft did not confirm whether Assassin’s Creed 4‘s multiplayer progress will carry over cross-gen.
As for Ubisoft’s other big cross-gen title, Watch_Dogs, there has been no statement made either way. Luckily, the PS4 version of Watch_Dogs launches day-and-date with the PS4 console, so the need to upgrade will likely be lower. In fact, Ubisoft claims that pre-orders for Watch_Dogs, as well as AC4, have been higher for next-gen than current-gen systems.
While the window is short for cross-gen games with upgrade offerings, the fact that the publishers have not figured out a way to transfer save files is disappointing. Regardless of the quality of a single player campaign, publishers should be making the upgrade process as simple and painless as possible.
Additionally, there enters the question of DLC, and whether that might be affected by save files across generations. Many publishers have created DLC guarantees for specific games, but if the single player save files don’t carry over, gamers might see the guarantee as an insult.
Hopefully, in the next month or so, publishers will come up with a solution. Or else gamers might have to start re-evaluating their pre-orders.
Are you surprised to find out single player saves won’t carry over across console generations? How will this affect which version of a game you purchase?