Everyone is aware of the lag/chopping issues with the PS3 and that the problem is caused by the save file growing too large. Yes there has been a patch but this only seems to postpone the issue.

The reason the save file grows so large is due to the vast amount of information the game remembers, so you can go back to an area and the naked dead bodies will be exactly where you left them. What is important to note is that the save only contains changes from original game state.

Now I've read in a few places, that unfortunately didn't or wouldn't cite a source, that waiting 30 in game days causes a lot of dungeons to reset to their original state. This should in theory shrink the game file. The downside I would imagine is that you've got to kill everyone again if you go back to the dungeons, and they've probably now levelled up from when you first encountered them.

After all that...

Has anyone tried this and does it work? I've not had the time to turn on my ps3 for a little while otherwise I would have tested myself.

EDIT: OPM just posted this article citing the Bethesda support forums, so it looks like waiting may help

  • Should the title or first few paragraphs perhaps contain the name of the game being discussed? Had to check the tags to see game we were talking about. Dec 7, 2011 at 13:04
  • 1
    @JamesSkemp fair point, question title edited.
    – Kevin D
    Dec 7, 2011 at 13:54
  • 1
    Yes, I can verify that this worked on the PS3. I went into an inn or house and waited 30 days tallying each one..... lag on my 100 hour 9mb save got 80% better
    – user16523
    Dec 15, 2011 at 21:05
  • @Kevin you should make that an answer. Did you happen to notice if your save file got smaller?
    – Kevin D
    Dec 16, 2011 at 8:36
  • Your link is broken.
    – Zeno
    Dec 21, 2011 at 7:29

3 Answers 3


I have the 360 version, so I can't test this out for you. It may buy you a few more hours, but Bethesda's own workaround is to turn off auto save and restart your console. Aside from that, I don't think there's a lot you can do until patch 1.4(+?).

  • I don't think this will ever be patched on PS3 as it's down to the architecture and the engine.
    – Alan B
    Dec 7, 2011 at 15:03

I inadvertently slept for several days in Breezehome while I was doing nothing but upgrading my smiting skills in Whiterun and I noticed that the lag has pretty much disappeared. Saved files are now 11 MB, but I have to see what the previous ones were. FWIW I am level 30 now.


Possible fixes (from Bethesda - Skyrim - PS3 forum post, "Skyrim Performance Tips" by Gstaff, a Community Manager):

  • Always update to the latest patch. We continually improve performance with each update.

  • If you start experience framerate and performance issues, save your game. Restart your Playstation 3 and reload the save. If the performance issues persist, here are other things to try.

  • Turn off auto saves. This can cause temporary stuttering since the PS3 saves these files in the background. This is most noticeable with large saves when fast traveling to a new area or entering a new area that auto saves.

  • Waiting for time to pass. Many things are running in the world depending on what quests you've done or places you have visited. Using Wait or Rest options, passing time will clear up some of these. It depends how long you wait, it may take up to 30 days for some items. Saving, resetting, and loading after this will have the largest effect.

  • Save your game and restart your Playstation 3 during long play sessions (6 hours or more).

  • If your game is freezing when entering water, make sure you’ve updated to the latest patch.

  • If you’ve updated to the latest patch and you encounter strange behavior immediately following application of the patch including queued messages appearing on the screen, just wait and let this process run its course. This is a temporary effect of certain Skyrim scripts correcting themselves after the update. Once this process is complete, make a new save and restart your Playstation 3.

  • Clear space on your hard drive. Clearing at least 2 or more GB of space for best results. Skyrim makes heavy use of the hard drive, and freeing up space on here seems to help many people. Hard drive speeds also differ in PS3 models. Some users have reported increase performance by upgrading their drives.

  • The PS3’s Safe Mode* feature includes options that can help with memory fragmentation.

  • Restore File System. Attempts to repair all areas on the hard disk drive where files can be saved. Corrupted data may be erased, which can help performance.

  • If you choose not to enter Safe Mode, you can manually delete corrupted saves within the XMB menu. Go to Games>Saved Game Utility. Within the menu, delete any corrupted save files. These files can be created from Skyrim and other games when a game doesn’t save properly (shutting down the console before an autosave completes, etc).

  • Rebuild Database. Will help with memory fragmentation on the PS3 HDD. Note: Using Rebuild Database will erase messages, playlists, changes made on [Information] screens, trimming information for pictures in [Photo], video thumbnails, video playback history and video resume information. The content that is erased will not be recoverable.

*Sony does not recommend using the options in Safe Mode unless you are experiencing issues with the PlayStation 3. Some of these options could result in loss of data.

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