Image: Ramen VR
The VR MMORPG Zenith: The Last City got off to a great start, but now it seems to be running out of steam.
MassivelyOP reports that Ramen VR has been running Zenith: The Last City “at a loss on a month-to-month basis for the better part of a year,” according to a studio representative.
“Ultimately, we had to make a choice between making fundamental changes or putting the game on ice. We made these decisions so that we could keep running Zenith for as long as possible,” the studio said.
The VR MMORPG is set to get a new foundation with Update 2.0, which will make it more accessible and social, among other improvements.
The studio originally planned to release a 2D version as well. But with Update 2.0, Ramen VR wants to double down on the VR aspect instead. The new version of the game is currently in pre-alpha testing.
Zenith: The Last City got off to a strong launch in early 2022, raising $35 million in investment capital shortly thereafter. Since then, four major free content updates have been released, which apparently did not bring the hoped-for success and influx of new players.
Ramen VR does not charge for subscriptions and must rely solely on game sales to cover the cost of running its servers. The studio could switch to a more sustainable infrastructure or business model to stay afloat.
The difficulties are certainly also related to the fact that the interest in VR games and VR in general has noticeably declined in 2023. Neither Playstation VR 2 nor Meta Quest 3 were able to turn things around, partly because they cost $500 or more. VR studio First Contact Entertainment was forced to shut down at the end of the year, and Archiact laid off employees in early 2024.
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