Vesteria is Dead

It is no secret that Vesteria has been facing blisteringly unpopular changes in recent memory. While discussions such as permadeath and data wipes were merely conceptional and had little effect on the actual game, they violently fractured the community. Vesterian took arms against fellow Vesterian, filling Discord chats with bloodshed.

Things start changing. The Vesteria team ditched our office and we went remote. Davidii came onto the team and prisman departed. The enchantment and money wipe shook the player base, lowering motivation to play what was an already declining game. It seemed that increasingly, the developers had no idea what they were doing and the game was on a nosedive all the way to the bottom.

Permadeath. Wiping data. These and other fiery conflicts started conditioning the most passionate and dedicated players to fight for what they believed in. To stop at nothing to save their favorite game, regardless of which side of the fight they were on.

Then these ideas started to escape the realm of conceptualism. They began to bleed into reality.

Trapped Reality of War

Drawn 7 years ago by Chris.
https://www.sketchport.com/drawing/710106/trapped-reality-of-war


The most recent update started out as only an idea, just like the ones that came before it. Stamina re-introduced to the game, but more restrictive than ever. Hold-to-attack removed, requiring mouse-mashing to use your basic attack. Player collisions re-enabled.

This was it. The perfect update to take arms against. Players against it (the majority) had plenty of explosive ammunition in the fight to come: of all of the things the dev team could be working on, they decide to undo progress to make the game clunkier and more tedious. But some players managed to see a silver lining in these changes, among the chaos. Perhaps these mechanics make sense in a different game, but not in Vesteria.

Today came a new battle. The dev team announced the next big idea for everyone to go mad over: death. The announcement was callous and blistering. You will lose one third of your money when you die. Whatever map you were grinding on, you will be returned to your home city. There are no exceptions, we don’t care if you die in a duel, die from resetting because you got stuck or die because you fell of the map. You died, and you will pay the price. Don’t even think of hiding your money away on another account, because a 30% tax is being applied to trades. And no, we won’t give you secure money storage.

I don’t need to tell you what happened next.

Forest Service, USDA

The Woolsey Fire, California. (Photo courtesy of Peter Buschmann)
https://www.flickr.com/photos/usforestservice/45923164272


I write this post tonight, somberly, to inform you that the swathes of disenfranchised players proclaiming “Vesteria is dying!” were correct.

Vesteria, as you’ve come to know it since it’s Beta release, is dead.

I have grown to deeply loathe what this game has turned into, and now I intend to take it apart and build it back up as something that, to many, will appear unrecognizable.

You may ask, why am I doing this? To the game that you have purchased and spent much of your time playing, and thinking about even when you’re not playing. To the magical world that for many of you has forever cemented itself it your hearts and your memories.

It’s because the first heart that this game touched was mine. The first memory of Vesteria wasn’t made in our Alpha, or during our weekend play-tests. The first memory of Vesteria was over 10 years ago when a young boy found an escape from reality sitting on a couch glued to his laptop. When he logged onto Maplestory to forget that he didn’t fit in at school. To forget that his mother ran away with him while she was pregnant with his brother. To forget just how lost he was in a seemingly uncaring, unwanting world. He stared at the game on his screen and dreamed that it could one day be his.

Chasing this desire to create led the boy through a life-bending roller coaster ride that few could even begin to imagine the intricacies of. Creating games became his escape instead of playing them, and the games he loved when he was younger had left a never-fading imprint in him.

One day, the stars aligned and the world gave him one shot to turn his dream into reality. The Roblox Incubator program. “Get a team,” the kid was told, “and get an idea.”

I knew from the start what I wanted Vesteria to be. Maybe I didn’t have every tiny meticulous detail planned out, but I knew that everything I needed for this game was in my heart. It had been with me my entire life and this was my shot to make it happen.

Three times I presented Vesteria, and each time it was rejected. Until finally we got in. We were one of the last teams to be accepted to develop at Roblox in the summer of 2018.

It was after we made it in that my dad called me in a moment that I will never forget. I was staying at my girlfriends house for the weekend and ran out onto her porch to talk to him. “Are you home?” he asked me. “Call me when you get home.”

My dad had developed cancer. Stage 4. Terminal.

@Polymorphic, @sk3let0n and I got into the first day of the Incubator with zero work done on the game. We had never met each other before, I barely knew what David looked like and I had never seen Damien’s face. But something clicked and we hit the ground running. There was chemistry between us that I never imagined possible. I had to work hard for their respect and their trust, but I quickly earned it. Every Saturday I called my dad when I woke up to tell him about how the game was doing. He was so excited, and even shared playful little ideas with me.

After the first month of our Incubator at Roblox, living in California, I received a call from my step mom telling me that my dad was hospitalized and that he was going to undergo surgery. They were optimistic, and he did make it out successfully. The doctors said that he was doing better and that with chemo, there was a chance to fight it. I been given that ray of hope to hold onto… but it would not last.

That hope was viciously ripped out of my heart as his condition quickly worsened. I started making weekend trips to visit him, braving the 6 hour flight so I could see him and help take care of him. He became delirious, fearing the doctors and the hospital and believing that they were trying to kill him. So I began staying the night in the hospital to keep him company. I slept during the day and stayed up all night in a hospital bed watching him rot away. When he slept, I pulled out my laptop and worked on Vesteria.

At RDC Amsterdam, the night after my panel with Tami Bhaumik and Simbuilder on Roblox game monetization, which I will forever consider to be one of the best talks that I will ever give in my life, I received the last call.

“You need to come now.” my step mother called me. I ripped open my laptop in a rabid frenzy and searched ticket prices. There was only one plane going to New York out of Amsterdam the next morning. It was $5,000.

I got it.

When I arrived at my childhome house in New Jersey, where I had made every Roblox game in and grew up to become the person I am today in, I was met with tears.

“I’m sorry”, she told me. She didn’t have to say another word.

I was too late.

I don’t know what I would have done without Vesteria.

I don’t know how the walls didn’t fall in on me.

I don’t know how I kept myself together.

But I stayed focused.

I poured every piece of my soul into the one piece of self-identity I had left: this game.

I went back to the Incubator and I led my team to create the best goddamn game that the Roblox Incubator program had ever seen.

There was so much work left to be done but I knew that we were on the right path, I knew that we could do this.

As you may know, that’s not what happened.

I have alluded to the events that unfolded many times on the forums, on Discord, and on my recent stream. To save this post from becoming too long: I lost control of myself. And I lost control of Vesteria.

Since our Beta release, Vesteria has not been the game I have wanted it to be. Decisions were made that went against the feelings in my heart one too many times and I went numb to those feelings. The stress started to eat away at me. It got so bad that I would start picking at my beard hairs until it became patchy and uneven. Then I started picking at my eyebrows. This feeling of absolute dread and completely inability to accomplish anything layered down on me until suddenly it hit me all the once with the mother of all burnouts. For a month after we left the office, I couldn’t bring myself to write a line of code for Vesteria. I had no desire to work, or to do anything. I sat on the edge of my downtown apartment window and wondered if this was it.

I decided it was time to step away from everything, to figure out what it is I want to do. What I want to be.

It’s only after everything fell apart that I could really start to see clearly again. It was a process, an ongoing one. I’m eternally grateful to the mentorship I received from Jeff at Roblox, as well as the valuable advice and relfection I received from others there.

It’s only now that I’ve begun listening to that kid in my heart again have these feelings and realizations started gushing into me.

That brings us back to today, and what’s been happening in the last few months.

I’ve realized the only way forward for me is to pick up the torch that I dropped when I left Roblox. To continue chasing my dream, unwavering and uncompromising to those who disagree. I am hardened in my resolve. I know what I want to do. What I need to do.

Some players see the light that is waiting for us at the end of the tunnel and are all for it. Others do not see the way but believe, perhaps with little actual expectation, in the magic that once made this game.

But many will not go quietly. Many will leave and not come back. Such is the unavoidable way of things.

For those of you who follow, I’m going to take you on the trip of a lifetime.

Thank you for embarking on this crazy journey with me.

Yours truly,
Andrew Bereza

123 Likes

Its nice to see you aren’t in denial and realize the state of Vesteria, this cant be said for other developers. I hope you can turn this around, Vesteria brought me a lot of enjoyment and I would like a reason to play it again.

Edit: I also pick at my beard and eyebrows when stressed, or bored.

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Honestly this post was inevitable, and I’m hopeful for the future. I’m sorry to hear about all that’s happened, but am thankful you’re honest about your feelings unlike other developers. Cheers.

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As someone who is interested in game development this was very insightful

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I like the game as it is now, with stamina in all and im exited to see what the future has to offer

edit: just in case you didn’t see my message in discord, every game has a toxic fan base, people switch sides from day to day, I mean look at Pokemon sword and shield, the game is amazing even though tons of people were downright disrespectfully toxic. Its the same with this game, people are being rude and mean but its still a fun great game.

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To understand popular games, we need to understand empires of the past, such as the Romans.

Some day, the empire will fall, and will be ancient history long ago that even the oldest Robloxians would know about.

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I really wish I can be as persistent as you, bereza. I’m also aspiring to be a video game programmer, developing RPG games similar to MapleStory most likely on Roblox as well. You’ve inspired me, and I hope that you don’t give up what you’re doing!

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I’ve never really been a HUGE fan of Vesteria. Back a year ago, when i first came across the play tests, i absolutely LOVED IT. It was very simple and easy to understand, and was overall pretty fun to play. But now, a year later, i can definitely see where you’re coming from, Ber. There’s just so much i don’t understand, so many changes that make the game something it isn’t.
Vesteria still has a lot of potential, a lot of untapped areas that could make the game better.

Keep following your dreams, Ber, you know the Vesteria better than anyone else.
Wether you stop developing Vesteria, or you try and make the game what it was supposed to be, there’ll always be fans who support you on your journey.

I’m not the best at interpreting my thoughts and feelings, but i think i did a halfdecent job here :slight_smile:

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I understand and now accept many of the changes you have implemented, but PLEASE: sometimes the game makes us spawn under the map which isn’t the players problem, and if they die there, it isn’t their fault. So if that happens, just don’t give a punishment, please.

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yeah that’s still you

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Hello big ber, although I don’t play your game as much anymore and you might find that great since i’m that one dump list guy, I’m always ready to give the game another go. Keep it up.

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I dont know what to say about it…but here we go
I rarely play heavy grinding games except bss aka Bee Swarm Sim. Gotta say I am kinda exciting to play a hard game on Roblox

Cant wait to break my laptop in last time, I played Rising Apocalypse,
It was diffecult to make a process then instantly gone in under 5 mins after playing for roughly two weeks.
Anyway, sorry for off topic but I was trying to say that we have very rare games who challenge gamers. Who knows Roblox community may accept or reject it and leave it dying?
I am very sorry for your father
That must be so painful to not see the masterpiece that a son created.
I am having similar experience with my father too except he has Alzember’s disease, so…he is practically dying in front of me.
I can tell that wasn’t easy. But we must never give up and chase our dreams! :heart::heart::heart:

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I don’t know what to type…

But

Thank you for coloring my imagination and depressing teenagehood

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I was not aware of what had happened to your father, I know the loss of a gravely close family member all too well.

I hope the others reading this post realise what you have gone through. I believe a lot of this community will appreciate this honesty.

To me this game is on the right track - reintroducing Stamina was a good idea, adding this new penalty was also a good idea.

You will always have my support.

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while I agree this post was more on a pathological appealing sense than a logistic appeal sense, consider the situation here. this isn’t an argument, not everything is

I’m not saying berezaa should get a break because of all this. Nobody gets breaks in life, and you have to make your break. That’s just the way the gears turn. Berezaa was mentally weak at the time so he allowed himself to be so easily turned away by the community. He’s trying to fix that.

Certainly his conditions have been stressing him for a while. As a developer myself, I know the pressure a giant group of people can put on you especially when they don’t know the scenes. Being stressed is not good for a healthy work environment. I feel this post is not to assert his position as a game developer, but to allow us to see things from his standpoint. Now we get to stand in berezaa’s shoes as to why he sees only he knows best for the game.

Instead of looking at this as an argument, look at this as a person.

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But for me, Vesteria will always be one of my favorite games ever, even it’s slowly dying right now.

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It’s definitely been fun, and still is fun to me.

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I have always stayed with vesteria no matter how many hardships I faced. There were a lot of times where I wanted to leave however I believed that vesteria can become great again.

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Vesteria was one of the best RPG games i ever played. Thank you so much for creating this game. Hopefully this will not be the end. This is one of my favorite games on roblox. Yall can still revive it, it might not be much but I support you :slight_smile:

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I still suport :slight_smile: this best MMORPG i play.

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