Latest Fez Patch Breaks the Game, Removed from XBLA

fez xbla

Independent game Fez has been receiving rave reviews ever since it came out for the Xbox 360, but even though most reviewers think that the downloadable puzzle platformer is worth playing, they have also pointed out some really serious technical issues that negatively affected their overall experience. To remediate this, developer studio Polytron has been actively working on a patch that was supposed to update the title and fix all major glitches, bugs and crashes. Unfortunately, when the long-awaited update launched on June 22, 2012, various players immediately realized that the patch read previous save files as corrupt, preventing them from accessing the game.

The developer also noticed these issues and tried notifying players through a Twitter post and their website by saying that those who haven’t installed the patch should definitely avoid doing so until further notice. Additionally, those who downloaded the patch anyway may delete their system caches as a potential workaround. Nevertheless, if this doesn’t solve the problem, those players have probably lost their save forever. If it does work, you’ll have to play the game offline to prevent the update from launching and installing again. It’s worth pointing out that since these issues became apparent, Microsoft removed the patch from the service to prevent new users from losing their save files forever. The game’s official website states that the patch may be ready in approximately two months. When it does come out, the title update is expected to fix the following issues:

Major issues

  • Save file unusable if saved inside one of two village interiors (4-cube wall village)
  • Save file unusable if saved at the top checkpoint of the lava challenge level, or attempted to use the “jetpack” cheat in this level
  • Save file unusable after playing for a long time (usually in a new game+) in certain areas of the game (crash within a minute)
  • Crash when rotating view on a ledge inside the library interior
  • Crash when attempting to open a blank spot in the artifacts inventory, after collecting the tome
  • Clock tower framerate slows down to a crawl if system date is too far in the past or the future
  • Able to escape out of closed interior rooms by rotating near objects, which can cause an infinite death loop
    Changing profile might corrupt the save file
  • Crash on fake reboot at hexahedron encounters (note : measures were taken to fix this, but due to its random nature we can’t know for sure that it’s gone; testers haven’t encountered it!)

Performance improvements

  • Frame dropping when auto-saving, especially when save device is not the hard drive
  • Frame dropping while using rotating platforms, time switches, valves and watchers
  • Poor performance when black holes are on screen
  • Poor performance in the industrial levels with platforms on railings


  • Infinite death loop if player gets sucked by a black hole near sewage water
  • Infinite death loop when pulling up from a ledge into a black hole
  • Infinite death loop when waiting in a space where a destructible block respawns
  • Inaccessible big parting waterfall doorway even if waterfall is parted, when coming back to it later on in the game or in a “new game+”
  • Inaccessible secret door if player collects 4 owls, goes to the statue but exits the level too early
  • Stargate door now two-way, which allows player to return back to the zu village instead of being forced to watch the ending
  • A certain valve/water height setup in the first sewer level makes sections of the level unattainable
  • Bumpers would randomly stop working for view rotation

Rare crashes

  • Crash if player enters the door behind the big parting waterfall too quickly
  • Possible crash when exiting an exterior level which has water
  • Possible crash and gltiching sound when holding onto rotating platform and falling
  • Possible crash and inconsistent behaviour with the “security question” puzzle room
  • Disconnecting controller in main menu may make the pause menu overlap it, which causes a crash when viewing credits
  • Upgrading the trial mode to full version from the upsell screen with video and selecting “Continue” could freeze the game

Graphical issues

  • In-the-sky level transitions visual issues with clouds moving sporadically and disappearing
  • Map graph does not update properly or nodes/connections disappear while browsing
  • One face of the “code machine” tetris rosetta stone doesn’t display
  • Clock tower : player collects anti-cube while falling to his death, camera gets stuck in zoomed-in mode
  • Jetpack causes graphical issues in the hexahedron encounters
  • Rotating groups active in first person view, which can cause camera oddities
  • Opening the inventory cube while using a warp gate or walking to a doorway causes graphical issues
  • Bell spins violently and disappears if standing idle near it for a very long time


  • First person view ability retained wrongfully when starting a clean new game from a “new game+”
  • Finishing with 64 cubes without having gone through a 32 cube ending doesn’t grant the first person view
  • Finishing the game with 33+ anticubes wouldn’t trigger the achievement(s)
  • Leaderboards not posting when not connected to LIVE, and would never post again
  • “Secret solved” jingle plays every time you input a secret code, even if it’s already been resolved


  • Leaderboards should cap at 209.4%
  • Anti-cubes and golden cubes should cap at 32
  • Infinite cube collection with the bell tower
  • Player was able to go through the secret owl door without having talked to the 4 owls

Localization issues

  • “carte de trésor” -> “carte au trésor” in french localization
  • All instances of “oe” did not appear in french localization

Sound issues

  • Birdsong loops don’t pause when opening the map or inventory screen
  • Several sound effects retouched/added
  • Credits are missing music when viewed during a cutscene