Kickstarted VR cyberpunk MMO Zenith grows its team, lays groundwork for pre-alpha

    
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Kickstarted VR cyberpunk MMO Zenith grows its team, lays groundwork for pre-alpha

One of the uplifting victories for the genre in 2019 was the fact that a couple of unorthodox titles were pretty successful in their Kickstarter campaigns. One of these, Zenith, raised $280,000 for a game that themed itself around a cyberpunk setting and utilized virtual reality (although the VR component won’t be mandatory to play).

We’ve been waiting to see what would come out of this small dev team since the Kickstarter, which is why we’re glad to take in the first developer video about Zenith’s future. The team is getting ready to invite a very few people in to playtest early builds and has grown to six full-time members (including one former dev who worked on Amazon’s Lumberyard tech).

As for the game itself, Zenith is laying the groundwork for pre-alpha with its ability system, A.I. for enemy mobs, a dynamic spawning system, and a half-kilometer Japanese-inspired playspace. Give it a watch below!

Source: YouTube

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NecroFox4

Super-duper hyped about this. We need more cyberpunk games in general, and we definitely need more VR MMOs, so a CYBERPUNK VR MMO?? YES PLEASE!!

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silverlock

Well when they have something playable I’ll certainly take a look at it but I’m not big on backing games that are still in the pipe dream phase.

The Rift S is at a price point where for the right game I might just go ahead and pick one up.

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Alexus Yanova

On one hand it is nice that developers are still able to secure that much money to develop their own project without being forced to take bank loans or find investors who would try to have more direct control over what developer does with that money.

On the other hand having all that money which they do not have to ever repay might not encourage them to spend them wisely. I see a Nanoleaf LED panel in the background, that’s a pretty expensive LED toy which is not necessary for the development of this game and which does not inspire much confidence into the ability of these people to spend money wisely. Especially if they purchased it with Kickstarter funds.

This reminds me of a streamer whom I used to support on Twitch, he was a small streamer who was trying to make streaming into full-time job and was also trying to support his mother and generally had very low amount of viewers. I donated several times but as soon as I saw that streamer showing all the useless crap he was buying including this expensive Nanoleaf LED panel (this does not enhance streaming in any way but only distracts the viewers if this panel is visible on cam) – I stopped donating anything because I saw this person does not care about spending money wisely and giving him more will never teach him how to do that and will only encourage him to spend more money on unnecessary toys.

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Syran

That sounds like quite an overreaction. It looks like those Nonoleaf LEDs cost like 150-200 USD. That’s not what I’d call expensive. Not that mention that they are not objectively pointless for a streamer, nor for decorating a game studio.

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Alexus Yanova

Maybe it is an overreaction and maybe $200 is not a big deal but as a person who have seen people wasting their money on such toys before it still bothers me. I wouldn’t show such useless toys on stream even if I bought those using my own money earned from primary job – a viewer can make a false assumption that his/her donations went into this toy instead of game and it makes more sense for a developer to pour all of the spare money into such project, even own money earned from primary job – the more money you put into the project the faster you can finish it and start earning profit from it.

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Syran

I get what you mean, but this, to me, is an almost demeaning view of developers. Are they not allowed to spend their money on anything – within reason – that makes them happy? If all of their expenses have to go 100% solely toward actual development, are they supposed to live and work in the cheapest tiny apartment they can find, eat cup noodles every day, work through weekends and holidays, never go out to watch movies or buy games, drop any friendships that take away time from development, sell anything they own that isn’t their dev equipment on eBay?

Yes, I’m being hyperbolic, but it really is crazy to me that people think they can dictate someone’s life just because they donated them a small amount of money. We’re not talking about them buying a car or taking some extravagant vacation. We’re talking about a small decoration that may improve their spirits while slaving away on a game for years.

Oh, and it also just may have been a gift.

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cursedseishi

Speaking personally here…

But I do see how ‘$200’ could be plenty. For a title that only sought $25k? $200 represents roughly… 1/125th of that original goal. Small, sure, but for any limited budget even a minor percentage (or percentile of a percentage) is major. And for a title where the cost of upkeep will be constant like an MMO, money should be left to create a padding rather than used for decor.

Even at… roughly $250-260k (after Kickstarter Fees)? For developers who admitted to quitting their jobs years back to work on it? Anything that doesn’t serve development through paying or supporting it is easily an unnecessary expenditure. For me, it is a warning signal when someone says they’ll make any sort of MMO for $25k. But for a game that is supposedly delivering VR and Desktop-based gameplay…?

That is expensive. And frivolity on a project like this is a poor look. And purely cosmetic and decorative panels are definitely frivolity.

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Zero_1_Zerum

A Cyberpunk themed VR MMO?!
Whhhhhaaaaaaaaaa-

*head explodes*

*head regenerates*

Why am I not hearing about this until now? Cyberpunk is my jam!
I’m definitely keeping an eye on this one.