We all love a generational shift in video games – it’s exciting to see the benefits and features of new hardware, and the advantage of bringing more power to game developers is of course enormous. I’m amazed at my favorite features of the new generation, even though it’s nothing exciting: Quick resume.
If you caught your eye, chances are you’re only playing on PS5, where the pause and resume function is considerably less useful – or you’re lucky enough to have no outside influences affecting your playing time.
I rarely play one game at a time – even when Elden Ring was dominating my life, I’ve been playing Final Fantasy 12 – and Quick Resume saves ridiculous amounts of time. I’ve also welcomed a new baby since these units arrived, and Quick Resume has proven invaluable in its ability to quickly stop and restart what I’m doing when some sort of feeding, defecation, or screaming emergency arises.
back when Xbox Xbox X First released, Sharif wrote about Quick Resume and summed it up really well. It’s great when it works. A year and a half later, I’m tempted to agree – it’s by far the best of the new quality of life features on these new generation consoles, at least in terms of the way I tend to use them. However, there is a difference. At the time, things weren’t working because they were broken. Over a year later, Quick Resume is still having problems – but of a different kind.
One of the Quick Resume items is directly broken – and I can’t really see a path to fixing it. And that’s how it interacts with games that have any kind of major online components that weren’t designed with a feature-saving thought.
I’ve had this issue with some games before, but it was coming to Xbox in the fourth Elden Ring game that really drove me home how frustrating Quick Resume can be when not fully considered or integrated. The problem is basically the following: When the game state is saved in Quick Resume and later captured, the connection to the server is normally disconnected. Different games handle this in different ways – some more elegant than others.
For example, Elden Ring can happily hang up and then resume – but when you do, the game will magically pick up where you left off like a second… and then boot you back to the main menu thanks to a lost online connection, so you have a chance to log in again . This is almost worse than if Quick Resume didn’t work at all, because it’s annoying – you see the game is ready for you, but then, no, it’s not. Back to the menu you go. Pain.
I’ve encountered this elsewhere as well. A lot of Ubisoft hookup games online are always frustrating in this way. Notoriously, Xbox Exclusive Halo Infinite saw its developers advise gamers not to use Quick Resume initially, so its integration crashed.
This is not an incurable problem, but it does require developers to think about it and address it effectively. No Man’s Sky is always online, but when it resumes, the game quietly reconnects to the servers in the background, seamlessly. Doom Eternal will disconnect you from the servers, but you can reconnect without having to go back to the main menu. These things are acceptable. Tease… This is very frustrating. In these cases, developers may also turn off Quick Resume completely.
But these frustrations can’t relieve the magic when you succeed. It is fast, time-saving and convenient. I’ve been switching between Lego Star Wars and a new generation GTA5 recently, and it just works. seamless. The other day I wanted to go back to Nier Automata and the game automatically resumed a session about six months ago – which sounds like black magic. I love him.
I just hope it works properly every so often. And if Sony can upgrade their Suspend mode to work for more than one game and when the console is completely shut down, that would be great too.