Example: Mindustry and Death and Taxes

This example explores the following concepts:

  • Multiple named piles in a single hoard
  • Mutually exclusive environments
  • How to handle files for flatpak'd applications on Linux

For this example, we will consider two games, installed on both Windows and Linux. Further, we will consider multiple methods of installing each game on each system. This is likely more work than one would do in practice, but this is for sake of example.

1. Choose files to back up

Generally speaking, save files are usually found in one of the following locations:

  • User documents
  • The game's installation directory
  • Some hidden directory (e.g. under $XDG_CONFIG_HOME or $XDG_DATA_HOME on Linux, %APPDATA% on Windows, etc.)

Of the two games we will be using, Mindustry sometimes stores its saves in the installation directory, while Death and Taxes stores its saves in a game-specific subdirectory of a location common to all Unity games.

  • Mindustry:
    • Flatpak: ${HOME}/.var/app/com.github.Anuken.Mindustry/data/Mindustry/saves/saves
    • Linux Itch: ${XDG_DATA_HOME}/Mindustry/saves/saves
    • Linux Steam: ${XDG_DATA_HOME}/Steam/steamapps/common/Mindustry/saves/saves
    • Linux Steam Flatpak: ${HOME}/.var/app/com.valvesoftware.Steam/.local/share/Steam/steamapps/common/Mindustry/saves/saves
    • Windows Itch: ${APPDATA}/Mindustry/saves/saves
    • Windows Steam: ${ProgramFiles(x86)}/Steam/steamapps/common/saves/saves
  • Death and Taxes:
    • Linux: ${XDG_CONFIG_HOME}/unity3d/Placeholder Gameworks/Death and Taxes/Saves
    • Windows: ${USERPROFILE}/AppData/LocalLow/Placeholder Gameworks/Death and Taxes/Saves

2. Add configuration for those files

We'll need environments for the operating systems and for the game stores. For simplicity, we will assume that the XDG variables are always set. We'll also need to specify the order of precedence for the game stores, since all three of them could be installed at once time.

The double square brackets ([[]]) are used to indicate that all of the XDG environment variables are set. If single square brackets ([]) were used, it would mean that at least one must be set.

For more, see the documentation for environments.

exclusivity = [
    ["flatpak_steam", "flatpak_mindustry", "linux_steam", "linux_itch"],
    ["win_steam", "win_itch"],

    exe_exists = ["flatpak"]
    os = ["linux"]
    path_exists = [
    exe_exists = ["flatpak"]
    os = ["linux"]
    path_exists = [
    os = ["linux"]
    path_exists = ["${HOME}/.itch/itch"]
    os = ["linux"]
    exe_exists = ["steam"]
    os = ["windows"]
    path_exists = ["${LOCALAPPDATA}/itch/itch-setup.exe"]
    os = ["windows"]
    path_exists = ["${ProgramFiles(x86)}/Steam/steam.exe"]
    "linux" = "${XDG_CONFIG_HOME}/unity3d/Placeholder Gameworks/Death and Taxes/Saves"
    "windows" = "${USERPROFILE}/AppData/LocalLow/Placeholder Gameworks/Death and Taxes/Saves"
    "flatpak_mindustry" = "${HOME}/.var/app/com.github.Anuken.Mindustry/data/Mindustry/saves/saves"
    "flatpak_steam" = "${HOME}/.var/app/com.valvesoftware.Steam/.local/share/Steam/steamapps/common/Mindustry/saves/saves"
    "linux_itch" = "${XDG_DATA_HOME}/Mindustry/saves/saves"
    "linux_steam" = "${XDG_DATA_HOME}/Steam/steamapps/common/Mindustry/saves/saves"
    "win_itch" = "${APPDATA}/Mindustry/saves/saves"
    "win_steam" = "${ProgramFiles(x86)}/Steam/steamapps/common/saves/saves"

3. Do an initial backup

You can now run hoard backup game_saves to back up the game saves, and hoard restore game_saves to restore them.