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How to Recover Lost Save Files on Pokémon Scarlet and Violet

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Have you lost your Pokémon Scarlet and Violet save file? Don’t worry—here’s how you can recover it.


Pokémon Scarlet and Violet experienced many glitches and bugs immediately after launch. However, the most intrusive and game-affecting issue you may have experienced is losing your save file.


Luckily, Pokémon Scarlet and Violet have a nifty save recovery option that, even if auto-save is off, backs up your game sessions as you play.

So if you want to know how to recover a lost save file in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, we can help.


Why You May Need to Recover a Save File in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet

The most common issue that can affect your copy of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet and cause a save file to become lost is a hard crash.

A hard crash is when your game totally freezes and causes itself to close, backing you out to your Nintendo Switch’s main menu. In the case of a long gaming session on Pokémon, the pre-existing issues with frame rate and memory leaks can cause your game to become more likely to crash.

Fortunately, there are a few quick ways to alleviate Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s performance issues and hopefully prevent hard crashing causing a long session’s worth of progress to be lost.

Additionally, any issues with your Nintendo Switch itself could cause any software you play on the platform to crash, so troubleshooting the most common issues with the Switch could also help to limit hard crashes.

However, even if your save file is lost through a hard crash there is still a way to recover your saves and restore your lost progress.

How to Recover Your Save Files in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet feature a hidden save file recovery screen that you can use to restore your game to the latest recovery. Fortunately, even if you have auto-save turned off, the recovery mode will periodically back up your save file.

To recover your Pokémon Scarlet or Violet save file, follow these steps:

  • From Pokémon Scarlet or Violet’s Main Menu, press and hold D-Pad Up + the X button + the B button.
  • After a moment, the main menu will fade to black and display your most recently backed-up saved data. To restore your data, select Start from backup data.

Your game will then prompt you that if you continue playing from its backup save and subsequently save, previously saved data will be deleted, and the game will load as normal but into the recovered save file.

Ensure Your Pokémon Experience Runs as Smoothly as Possible

Despite being a fun and inventive Pokémon entry, Scarlet and Violet’s issues do all they can to interfere with your enjoyment of the game.

Thankfully, simple tips and tricks like the game’s recovery mode can help reduce the chance of the game’s issues interfering with your gameplay and stopping you from enjoying the game.



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