Save Games: Troubleshooting
NEO Scavenger was made in Flash, and therefore uses Flash's "local shared object" system (sometimes called "Flash cookies") to store save games and user preferences.
Unfortunately, some websites have abused these cookies, prompting people to block them or employ "cookie cleaners" to remove them periodically. Needless to say, this causes some problems for players trying to save their game in Flash-based games like NEO Scavenger.
Why Can't I Save My Game?
In most cases, save game failure is due to one of these things:
- You are using the demo, which has no save feature
- Flash is set to block local shared objects.
- A browser (or a plugin) is blocking or deleting local shared objects.
- Antivirus software is blocking or deleting local shared objects.
- A cookie cleaner software is blocking or deleting local shared objects.
- Launching the game from within a temporary folder or zip file, or from a different place than where it was saved.
How Do I Change Flash to Allow Local Shared Objects?
If Flash is blocking your shared objects, you can change this setting by opening the Local Settings Manager. Usually, this can be done by launching NEO Scavenger, right-clicking on the loading screen, and choosing "Settings" from the menu that appears.
That will bring up an options screen that lets you enable or disable Flash player saving on your PC. On the "Local Storage" tab, you can choose how much space NEO Scavenger uses to save games with a slider. It will also show how much space is currently used in the lower right corner of the dialog.
Note that the "Never Ask Again" checkbox will mean that Flash does not check with you if the app needs to store more space than it is allowed.
If you are unable to find these settings on your computer, you can also try the online Storage Settings Panel. Though technically, the Local Storage Settings panel mentioned above is supposed to replace this online version.
Why Do My Save Games Keep Disappearing?
If you are able to save your game successfully, but then loading your game later doesn't work (E.g. saying "No save data found."), this could mean that you have software which periodically deletes your local shared objects.
The usual culprits in this case are:
- One of your web browsers (Chrome, IE, Firefox, etc.) set to delete cookies when you exit the app, or periodically.
- You have a web browser plugin (E.g. Better Privacy) set to delete cookies when you exit the app, or periodically.
- You have a cookie removal tool installed, such as Cookie Cleaner, and it is set to periodically remove Flash local shared objects.
- You have antivirus software installed that periodically deletes cookies and shared objects.
If you've checked all of the above, and it's still happening, there is one trick you can use to determine which app is deleting your save games. On a Windows system, for example, there is an app called Process Monitor which lets you watch a file to see who is deleting it:
This link explains how to set it up to watch for file deletion:
Finally, if none of the above works, be sure that you're launching the game from a normal folder, and from the same one each time you launch. Flash shared objects are stored in a place that is based on the location of the app that stores them, so if you launch from within a zip file, a temp folder, or multiple locations, it won't find the save files.
Where are the save games stored?
The save files are stored wherever Flash keeps shared object data on your machine. Each OS is a bit different, and it also depends on which folder the game binary is in.
C:\Documents and Settings\UserName\Application Data\Macromedia\Flash Player\#SharedObjects\RandomString\PathToGame\NEOScavenger.exe\nsSGv1.sol
Windows 7 and 8:
Macintosh HD:Users:UserName:Library:Preferences:Macromedia:Flash Player:#SharedObjects:RandomString:PathToGame:NEOScavenger.app\nsSGv1.sol
In each of the above cases:
UserName is the username you use to log into your OS.
RandomString is a random string of numbers and letters, unique to each computer.
PathToGame is the path to the NEO Scavenger binary. For example, if your game was launched from "C:\games\NEO Scavenger" folder on Windows, the path would look something like:
C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Roaming\Macromedia\Flash Player\#SharedObjects\RandomString\localhost\games\NEO Scavenger\NEOScavenger.exe\nsSGv1.sol
This means that moving the game to a new folder changes where the save games appear.
Can I back-up the save files?
Yes. Save files can be copied and pasted around like any other files, in case you want to keep a back-up.
What if I can't find the directory?
On some OSes, the above folders may be hidden, by default.
On Windows, you can show hidden files following these instructions. Also, you may want to verify that "Hide protected operating system files (Recommended)" is disabled as well. It's possible that these settings make that folder invisible to the user.
Why Don't You Change the Save Game System?
Unfortunately, NEO Scavenger won't be getting a new save game system. The only way to change the save games is to do one of three things:
- Rebuild the game from scratch in another language.
- Change the game from Adobe Flash to Adobe AIR.
- Remove permadeath.
#1 is months of work, at least, and probably months more of bug-fixing. I can't afford to remake the game from scratch.
#2 is less work, but hurts Linux players. I don't want to ruin the game for some players to make it better for others.
#3 completely changes the game style, and I don't want to make NEO Scavenger non-permadeath.
If there is a #4 out there that I am unaware of, and which bypasses these issues, let me know!
It's annoying, I agree. But it's the drawback I have to live with for choosing to use Flash when I started in 2011!
Dan Fedor - Founder, Blue Bottle Games