save file recognition

anything from the famous Psycho Mantis escapades to the Mass Effect trilogy‘s (from what I can tell I haven’t played it) main selling point

please tell me about any time a game has recognised that you have also played a different game

bonus points if it is particularly cute

A very bizarre instance of this is in the Yakuza games on PS4. I have a vague memory of booting up Yakuza Kiwami only at some point to be bombarded with messages about how I was being awarded with some useless gear and/or goofy cosmetics and/or free anti-hangover supplement drinks. It felt like when you buy like a box of cereal and get a mail-in rebate for 1.29$ off of fruit snacks or something.

The first time I played Gran Turismo 3 it rewarded me with 1000000 credits for playing GT Concept: Geneva-Tokyo which inturn, immediately ruined the campaign mode as I proceeded to buy a super car to lap Toyotas and pt cruisers

The Picross S series on the Switch recognise if you have played earlier entries, and unlock some bonus puzzles as a reward for doing so. eg, the first time I launched Picross S7 I was met with “Picross S4 data found! Picross S5 data found! Picross S6 data found!”

Certainly not as cool as the Psycho Mantis stuff, but a nice little bonus.

@“Gaagaagiins”#p75830 What’s great is that this has been a series tradition since the PS2 games. It even extends to the spin-offs like Judgment/Lost Judgment and Fist of the North Star: Lost Paradise.

Another obvious one maybe? In Shadow of the Colossus, your horse will have an I for ICO symbol on it‘s forehead instead of the sotc symbol. I didn’t know this until way after, but I had the I the entire time, so that's how I see Aggro when I picture her.

The way some games link their SRAM across cartridges is similar to this too. Technically not the same thing, but belongs in the same category IMO. Like linking Harvest Moon GBA to GCN to unlock stuff, or carrying your party from Golden Sun part 1 to Part 2.....

Isn't there a bonus if you have Sonic Adventure 2:Battle data when you play Sonic Adventure DX on the Gamecube? Like special Chao eggs? Or Big the Cat cameos in SA2 on Dreamcast if you have SA1 data on your VMU? **There's a 60% chance I'm making this up.**

@“treefroggy”#p75852 In Metroid Prime you unlock the fusion suit by linking with Metroid Fusion.

In the Wii U version of Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker there are some levels that are unlocked when the game detects a save file from Super Mario 3D world. I believe those levels aren't available on the 3ds and switch ports of that game.

Death Tank Zwei unlocks in Duke Nukem for Saturn if you have a Quake save.

The Arc the Lad series.

@“treefroggy”#p75852 I recall something similar about chaos, but I'm thinking Sonic Adventure 2 gamecube to Sonic Advance via link cable.

I booted up Dead Cells for the first time AFTER starting this thread and a character whose significance I cannot yet recognise had a hodgepodge of things to say about a whole heap of indie games I'd played (Hyper Light Drifter, Guacamelee from memory)

Fire Emblem 10 takes advantage of the Wii's backward compatibility to give you bonuses if you have FE9 clear data on your Gamecube memory card. Permanent stat boosts and weapon experience bonuses mostly, though the stat boosts vary in kind from character to character. Maybe the most interesting bonus is dialogue for specific characters being different if they had certain A-rank supports in FE9


@“treefroggy”#p75852 Big the Cat cameos in SA2

I remember seeing [a few of these]( in the Gamecube version. I swear he can also appear in the cutscene after Sonic defeats the first walker boss, but it's not in this video, so apparently I'm making _that_ up

@“captain”#p76184 There are also coins you could find in FE9 that were totally useless in that game but could be transferred to FE10 where they give a bonus. These coins were very puzzling when FE9 was released

My favourite example of this is found in Burning Rangers: If you‘ve got NiGHTS save data on your Saturn, then there’s a chance Claris and Elliot will show up as older children to be rescued in Mission 2, complete with their own portraits and thank you emails as well. Only I didn‘t know that was the requirement for years and years, as I’ve never owned a Saturn and not also owned NiGHTS :smiley:

New Zelda keeps your horses from Breath of the Wild APPARENTLY (I played it on the Wii U)

@“notthetoilet”#p116960 This lead to a really funny moment for me, because I totally forgot: I had just one horse in BotW, and he was named Moon Ass. I thought it was some strange out-of-place joke when I saw him in the stable. It's been 6 years… glad to be reunited.

Nintendo seems to be doing a lot of save file recognition during the Switch era (typically called Save Data Bonuses by them, it seems). Surprised not all of these have been mentioned on here yet, though they are generally unremarkable so it makes sense. Besides the Zelda horses, I can also think of:

  • - Splatoon 3 recognizes Splatoon 2 save data, and transfers-over your rank + gives you some weapon tickets to get a head start. The story mode also carries over your player character from 2, to appear as an NPC.
  • - Pokemon [Sword/Shield](, [Brilliant Diamond/Shining Pearl](, [Legends Arceus](, and [Scarlet/Violet]( all have special unlocks when saves from other Pokemon games are found on your switch. Linked to pages detailing them all cause there are too many to mention. The coolest are definitely the ones in Legends Arceus though!
  • - Bayonetta 3 has unlockable weapons and costumes obtained for having both Bayonetta 1 and 2 saves on your Switch
  • - In Xenoblade Definitive Edition, you get cash money for having a Xenoblade 2 save
  • - In Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity you get a wooden sword and shield set for Link for having a BotW save.
  • - Smash Ultimate has a ton of these, where you just unlock Spirits
  • - Probably more but I've wracked my brain trying to come up with any other ones!
  • It's a shame they don't do something more interesting with these, certainly nothing as cool as Psycho Mantis. For sure the best I've seen them do has been incorporating your old Splatoon 2 character into 3's story mode, that was really fun.