Praise the sun and fear the old blood, Bloodborne’s load times have finally been shortened! This much-requested change comes courtesy of patch 1.03, which also boasts a handful of other nice tweaks for the game.

Sporting a Metacritic score of 92, it’s safe to say that just about every critic who played From Software’s latest offering was a big fan of the punishingly difficult action game. Despite that fact, the vast majority of those same folks, as well as the community of players, had one major gripe with Bloodborne: Its load times were ridiculous.

I didn’t pull out a stopwatch or anything, but I think it’s a fair estimate to say that traveling from one save point to another within the game, or waiting for a respawn after dying, could take nearly a full minute. That, in my mind, has actually been the most punishing thing about Bloodborne. Dying quickly in a boss fight I can handle. Having to stare at the word “Bloodborne” for a solid minute after said death is frustrating. That only compounds if you’re having trouble in an area, getting to play for about two minutes before waiting through the next lengthy load screen, over and over again.

From Software promised that an update to address this issue was inbound and, as of now, patch 1.03 has gone live. I haven’t been able to test the new load times out myself but, judging from the comments I’m seeing on various forums, the fans are ecstatic with the shortened period of time. According to the official patch notes, load times should now take between five and 15 seconds. Assuming that holds true, we’re talking about a pretty dramatic, and extremely welcome, change.

But wait, there’s more!

On top of shortening load times, From has also injected Bloodborne with a few additional improvements, including one that should make those shorter load times even less frustrating. Much of the lore in Bloodborne is semi-hidden in item descriptions. There’s very little story to be gleaned from the infrequent cutscenes and scraps of dialogue, meaning you’ll need to go into your menu and read up on various in-game items if you want to find out more about what’s going on in the cursed city of Yharnam and why you are, you know, killing everything in sight.

To make that process more bearable, those item descriptions now pop up during the load screens, rather than just saying “Bloodborne” all the time. Now that I’m nearly finished with the campaign, I can’t help but feel these would have been very welcome changes when I would have stood to benefit from them, but at least future players will have a more comfortable wait between deaths.

Additional tweaks from the patch include fixing bugs that made certain elevators inoperable, made certain bosses immobile and left players unable to trigger NPC events while playing co-op.

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