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Depending on your information source, you will find different opinions on Zenith VR. In addition, there is no middle ground because reviews are extreme in either scenario. Below is an unbiased review of Zenith VR regarding what the game is about, where you can get it, and whether you should allow your kids to play it. In addition, you will find a guide on how to set parental controls for the game.
Part1: What is Zenith VR game?
Platform: Quest 2, PS VR, Windows VR
Type: MMO RPG, Action
Recommended age: PEGI 16+
Zenith: The Last City is an action-packed MMO RPG available on PS VR, Oculus, and Windows virtual reality platforms. In addition, the game is arguably the best attempt at providing the MMO RPG genre with virtual reality. The game has early-access status, meaning it is still in development, and the developer is market testing. Here is all you need to know about the current version of Zenith VR.
Zenith: The Last City is the work of Raven VR, a Belgian game development and publishing company. It was released in late January 2022 as an early-access game on Steam VR, PS VR, Oculus Store, and Windows VR. Contrary to common belief, the game is not a sequel or adaptation of the PS 4 title. Instead, it is a stand-alone open-world MMO RPG featuring the classic aspects of taking quests from non-playing characters, joining alliances, earning rewards, and engaging in fierce battles.
Since the genre is still new on VR, Raven decided to release the title pre-completion to gauge gamers' opinions before full release. Currently, the game enjoys mixed reviews and averages 6.0/10 across most game review forums.
Zenith VR starts with a character creation screen, where you develop your avatar using the available templates. You then proceed to the game's main screen, where you can choose to complete quests or your character's storyline. Then, in classic MMO RPG fashion, you earn rewards and collect loot after each successful battle, which you can use to improve your character's abilities.
Raven VR does a great job of using your VR device's control since each button impacts your avatar's in-game actions. For example, pressing the side buttons makes your avatar swing their word or blast their laser at the enemy. On the other hand, motion gestures result in special attacks or lobbing grenades. As a result, Zenith VR offers you a truly immersive gaming session by engaging your entire range of motion.
Furthermore, the game allows single and multiplayer modes. However, multiplayer mode is the better option since you can assign different roles to your team members and exchange ideas on accomplishing quests. Despite the game providing a better VR experience than other titles in the genre, it still suffers from bugs and shallow content. However, Raven VR seems to be addressing these issues with continuous updates and patches.
Zenith VR is available on Steam VR, Oculus Store, and PS VR, where it retails for $29.99. In addition, it also supports Valve Index and HTC VIVE VR headsets.
Part2: Why should kids not play MMO RPGs?
Like most online games, Zenith VR also faces criticism from parents. You will encounter different concerns depending on the audience. However, here are the most prominent ones.
It is a huge time killer.
Massive multiplayer online role-playing games are notorious time wasters. This is because you always have a quest available every time you start playing. In addition, these games are set in an open-world format, allowing you to participate in other non-game activities, such as exploration and base-building.
For example, Zenith VR offers limited-time events with rare rewards, ensuring you continue playing. Furthermore, you always find your character a level lower than the boss. As such, you need to redo your quests to improve your character's abilities to beat the boss.
Keeping this in mind, you are looking at gaming sessions of between three to five hours. According to experts, playing VR games for extended periods can be problematic for users. Here are some of the issues that can arise:
- VR headsets offer high-resolution images that can cause eye strain and fatigue.
- The wide range of motion can result in balance issues since your movements do not consider your external environment. VR glasses offer different images for each eye to create an illusion of depth. As such, you will experience disorientation once you take off the headset after extended gameplay.
They consume a lot of money.
Another concern for parents not allowing kids to play MMO RPG is the spending of real-life currency. Currently, the gaming industry has a market value of over $300 billion. The valuation results from developers monetizing their creations by offering users paid access and in-game purchases. In addition, they invest heavily in solicitation methods, such as limited-time events, to push you to spend more money. For example, if an early-access copy of Zenith VR retails for $29.99, what will the full release version cost?
Typically, the developers target younger audiences in their monetization campaigns since they are most vulnerable. As such, you need to monitor your child's gaming habits to prevent them from overspending on out-of-budget items.
High frequency of stranger socializing.
The entire concept of MMO RPG is the in-game interaction between players. For example, alliance members in Zenith VR regularly update one another on their progress through the game's chat feature. Although this adds depth to your gameplay, you cannot verify the other player's identity or motives since you all use aliases for your avatars.
In addition, most MMO RPGs do not have competent age-verification systems allowing anyone to interact with their games. As such, cybercriminals can exploit this vulnerability and execute their harmful schemes. Reports indicate cyberbullying, identity theft, and sharing of inappropriate content as some of the problems of stranger socialization.
They are much easier to get addicted to than other types of games.
Several studies indicate that MMO RPGs are more addictive than other game genres. For example, nearly 50% of the 3166 MMO RPG players in Nicholas Yee's study considered themselves addicts. In addition, their average playing time was 12 hours daily.
MMO RPGs can lead to addiction in the following ways:
- They allow you to create and join teams during gameplay, instilling a sense of duty to play regularly for fear of disappointing your crew.
- Similarly, rewards improve as your avatar levels up, necessitating you to play continuously to reach a higher level quicker.
The above reasons prove parents should not allow kids to play MMO RPGs. However, given that there are over 2 billion gamers globally, your child will likely play an MMO RPG at some point. So, how can you ensure they are safe? Keep reading to find out.
Part3: Can you apply Parental Control on VR games?
Parental control is an effective way of ensuring your child's safety when playing VR games. Different platforms allow you to set restrictions, depending on your preference. For example, you can set restrictions on who can communicate with your child when playing. Currently, parental control is available on Steam VR and PS VR, with Oculus promising to launch the feature soon.
Here is how to set parental controls on the different platforms.
Steam Parental Control
Steam VR offers parental controls through Family View. Follow these steps to enable the feature on your child's account.
Log in to your child's account through Steam Client or the Steam website.
Access the Settings option by clicking the Steam option from the menu at the top of the page.
Select the Family tab and click on Manage Family View from the resulting menu.
Use the setup wizard to set the restrictions you want for the account. These include excluding certain titles from Steam Library, preventing access to the Steam Community, and only allowing your child to interact with users in their friends' list.
You will then set a recovery email for the account to receive troubleshooting advice. You can use a separate email for account recovery other than the one used to register the account.
Set and confirm a pin for Family View to receive a confirmation code in your recovery email.
Enter the confirmation code to finalize the process.
Below are the steps for setting parental controls for PS VR games.
Proceed to Settings from your PS 4/5 console home screen.
Select the Parental Controls option, followed by Family Management.
Once there, click on your child's account to open the feature adjustment page.
Adjust your preferred features by clicking the Edit hyperlink and confirming your choice once you finish.
PS VR allows you to set parental controls for the following features:
- Monthly spending limit
- Web filters (requires a subscription)
- Playtime controls
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1. When is the complete Zenith VR coming out?
There is no official communication on the exact release date for Zenith VR. However, Raven VR continues to release updates that feature bug fixes and additional content improvements.
2. Which Oculus VR headsets support Zenith VR?
You can play Zenith VR on Oculus Quest and Oculus Quest 2.