Zenith: The Last City is the closest thing we’ve got to a fully-fledged MMO in virtual reality to this point. It checks a lot of the RPG boxes with dungeons to run, raids to complete, gear to grind, and sizable expanses to explore. While it’s undeniably impressive as a proof-of-concept, Zenith is an otherwise painfully average MMO.
That’s not to say there’s anything egregiously bad about Zenith. Its first-person combat works well enough, cooking and crafting are amusing diversions, and its locales show off some solid aesthetic diversity. What’s hard to overlook are the things it doesn’t have: captivating customisation options, a compelling plot, any interesting characters, engaging build variety, and the list goes on.
If there’s anything the game gets very right, it’s the traversal. Navigating its landscapes is surprisingly liberating thanks to unique gliding and climbing mechanics that allow you to go anywhere and scale anything provided you’ve got enough stamina to do so. We wish there were more excuses to push these innovative ideas to their limits, since the bulk of the journey consists of bog-standard battles against enemies.
There’s quite a lot of enemy battling in this PSVR2 release of Zenith, which benefits from over a year of updates and content drops since its 1.0 launch on other platforms. That content is enough to keep you mildly amused for dozens of hours as long as there are still people to do it all with.
Playing entirely alone is not an option here, as there’s the occasional story dungeon that requires two players to start, and the end-game raids demand a full party of four. That’s not outside of the norm for MMOs, but it will become a concern if the player base begins to dwindle between updates. Cross-platform play helps, but it’s no guarantee that you won’t face queue times upwards of half an hour just to get your next story dungeon done.
However, as it stands today, PSVR2 has breathed new life into Zenith’s servers with a salvo of fresh faces willing to give the game a shot. The level 40 veterans we’ve come across have all been happy to help newcomers with advice, and there’s the promise of more content to come without any subscription fee to speak of. We can hope that future support will turn Zenith into something more thrilling or fix its crashes which we encountered several times. But right now, even after a year of steady support, Zenith: The Last City is an unexceptional affair.