Last month’s Zenith beta suggested the VR MMO could go the distance. Read our practice below.
Looking back over the past few years, I admit I thought it was a certain Zenith who would fail. Heck, I didn’t even think it would get to the point where it would be considered a failure – I had assumed it was destined to fade from memory without even an apologetic tweet or an update under the radar of the Steam store.
Two and a half years after those assumptions and, well, I sound a little silly. I played at Zenith. I actually played it on Quest 2, which basically means I played it on the most difficult platform developer Ramen VR will be working on. And it’s good. I even think it’s very good. But that’s of course based on a few hours of what promises to be a much, much bigger experience, and there’s still a lot to learn about what the developer is up to.
Zenith has just enough VR novelty sprinkled into the classic MMO formula to make me think people who love that latter element are going to devour it and people who want the former and are going to respect it.
There are two basic classes to start with that basically divide the MMO crowd: swords or spells. Warriors will use dual-wield electric katanas, carving out deliberate patterns to maximize damage, while mages (or at least spell people shooters, as I have come to think of them) use two mounted laser-guided gauntlets. on the wrist for projectile attacks.
There are also smaller sub-roles to consider as a tank, but combat is the main factor that decides what kind of experience you have. Fortunately, at least as far as I know, the game appears to have abandoned the Beat Saber-style approach that it first promoted in 2019.
Sword fighting skillfully avoids the pitfall of the thrill of virtual reality – you can Just hammer enemies several times, but you won’t do much damage. Instead, you should allow your swords time to charge between each attack to maximize your attack power. It’s a smart way to make sure Zenith isn’t just mindlessly waving your hands and watching the numbers fly with little to require it to be in VR. You can still swipe horizontally and vertically to unleash special attacks for additional damage and buffs, although I haven’t dived in to explore the upgrades and progression of these systems in depth.
Magic – something I admit I’m used to avoiding in this genre – seems simplified, but it works in its favor at least at this early stage. Point, shoot and occasionally press a different button to activate your other powers. I haven’t seen much of complex systems to maximize the effect of your attacks, but it does make the class really accessible from the start.
Other keys specific to virtual reality are dotted. There’s the liberating physical escalation that you can find just about anywhere these days, and then Population: One stops to lend what is probably its key contribution to the industry – instant glide by making people take responsibility. to the players the pose in t. It puts a welcome spring into the stage of a genre that historically evolves at a snail’s pace.
What is more familiar, however, is the structure of Zenith. After the surprisingly short tutorial, you’ll be introduced to the first environment of the game along with a host of other players. Here, you’ll complete your usual assortment of scavenging quests. There is a lot of killing a certain type of monster onceâ¦ and starting all over again 5 minutes later. And, hey, it’s good if it’s a little routine in those early days. Zenith does just enough with its VR interactivity to make up for the early obviousness of its lens types, but I’m really hoping to see more elements that speak specifically to the platform later in the game.
And, of course, there is the social aspect. I really enjoyed the ease and openness with which I could play After The Fall with just about any VR owner when it launched last month and that simplicity seems to be approaching quickly by a stroke. common in industry. Just pick the right server, meet in one place, and you’re in. Not only that, but you are with friends who have great representations of the whole body, with the possibility of partying in just a few clicks.
The fundamentals therefore seem to be in place for the launch of Zenith later this year. But, like I said before, this is all a very cursory reading of what the MMO has to offer so far. I can’t wait to come back for a more in-depth review during the second beta of this month, and then obviously really pushing how far that can go during the launch, which is promised for early 2022. In l As it stands, Ramen VR has already exceeded my reserved expectations. Now all he has to do is stay above that bar for over 50 more hours.