Zenith discusses legendary gear replacement and difficulty scaling, promises better comms


Over the weekend, VR MMO Zenith released its first minor patch, adding new side quests and NPCs, new endgame features, and a streamlined tutorial to help players find their footing among other features. What the patch also did was replace legendary armor with lesser epic gear and nerf already earned legendary armor, leading to some outcry from fans (as well as some abhorrent Discord behavior). Game Director Andy Tsen issued a letter to fans shortly after, explaining some of the design decisions and apologizing for mistakes made along the way.

While the letter explains that legendary armor should look and feel more powerful than it originally did (thus why it’s going back to the drawing board), Tsen also admits that replacing legendary gear without warning was a mistake. In the future, the devs will do their best not to sunset armor and introduce ways for players to use gathered materials to get useful upgrades or trade them for newer armor.

“We didn’t respect the grind, and for that we are sorry,” he writes. “Many of you had been waiting days to get this armor, and although we believe the balance decisions were right, we shouldn’t have just taken it away without providing anything in return.”

Another major point of the letter relates to level scaling, which was introduced to stop high-level players from steamrolling lower level content. Tsen writes that the feature is working as intended, but also notes that difficulty has been tuned up a bit too high, so the devs have applied a hotfix to the system to account for players feeling too weak among other adjustments.

Tsen promises better patch communication and improved development processes like hiring more QA testers, taking detailed patch notes, and opening a public test server later this month. Tsen also called out abuse hurled at devs in the Discord, noting a zero tolerance policy for those who are toxic to the team.

“This has been a really difficult day for the team. We’ve lost sleep and spent countless hours addressing and fixing issues, but we’ve learned a lot, and we think this will make the game way better, and your experience much more fun in the future,” Tsen writes.

sources: official site (1, 2), Steam
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