Zenith: The Last City, Ramen VR's VRMMORPG, has not been profitable for "the better part of a year."
Following on from October's Might and Mastery updates, Zenith: The Last City is currently preparing for Patch 2.0. Having previously detailed 2.0's design pillars on its blog, Ramen announced it was holding closed pre-alpha playtests for the upcoming update. However, the studio also outlined why there's such a big need for change, confirming Zenith isn't currently profitable.
Understand that while Zenith was initially very profitable, we’ve been running it at a loss on a month to month basis for the better part of a year. For two years the team has tried everything we could to get us back into profitability or user growth, but it just hasn’t panned out. Our goal with the next update is to introduce some big changes to try to make our beloved world a sustainable development project.
Unlike many MMOs, Zenith doesn't charge a subscription fee to cover online server costs. Instead, income is reliant on individual game sales without the use of microtransactions.
Continuing further, Ramen doesn't believe they'd become profitable again by "just polishing, fixing bugs, and adding content." In the design pillars blog, the studio affirmed that its "doubling down on XR," stating that while they've looked into a potential flatscreen release, "it’s clear that we have to nail one platform first before thinking about more."
As such, Zenith's patch 2.0 looks set to introduce some "fundamental changes" to avoid closing down the game. Though Ramen hasn't revealed specific details just yet, stating those will be shared later this month, the studio confirms these changes include overhauling both level and skill progression.