Best in Class Graphics

Define “very successful”. From my point of view it was a failure. Other recent games I’ve bought ran and looked great on my PC. New World, Diablo 4, Baldur’s Gate 3 for example.

Starfield looks like utter *$@&.

But Zwift runs well enough in Ultra on an older card, and still looks good. It’s not going after the high end gaming market, and that’s OK. Certainly at the moment there’s nothing on the “indoor cycling” scene that looks significantly better in my opinion. The best was a mod for GTA V, but that’s a completely different market.

That’s their call, but they won’t be gaining me as a customer. Besides anything else, I would only buy one high end PC and that would be my main gaming / work computer, up in my office. The “Zwift computer” down in the garage will always be a much lower spec machine.

Zwift simply isn’t a game in the gaming sense. I’d like it to be more “gamified”, but I still wouldn’t see it as something I need great graphics for. Room for improvement, sure. Requiring a high end card costing $1,000 alone? No chance.


What I was really trying to get at is like I mentioned earlier; it’s next to never that you see massive improvements in graphical fidelity in software; certainly not complete overhauls at any point in the life, usually just adjustments here and there.

The quality however is fine under the acknowledgement that it was designed to be run on potato devices across the spread of several platforms, and all having to function together.

Again the reality is, ZHQ can do very little in terms of improving the overall appearance for top end users; but it has to begin with either an overhaul of how graphics settings are handled, or making a new profile (which personally I hate the profiles as it always puts updates on the backend to those with brand new hardware).

Take note of my wording though; that the graphics are indeed good, they’re just limited by what ZHQ is allowing us to have in terms of LODs and textures.

The modeling is there; you can look at development images and get an idea of how things could appear.

They’re just cut down into release versions for tons of reasons.

OP still just needs to wrap their head around how Zwift is selling the lowest priced smart trainer on the market.

They aren’t looking to make 12 people happy that are willing to afford top of the line GPUs for their windows devices, when it’s probably a safe bet that less than 30% of the entire userbase is even on a Windows PC to begin with.

Meanwhile, these other companies are placing their bets on cloud services, and pumping that down to mobile devices; it’s not the same thing…

What happens when that service that they’re using ends or changes?
It means all of those customers are left in the dark and cold with zero solution; how well do you think that’s going to go over?

And don’t say it won’t change “it’s a paid service”… because Microsoft’s AI Azure voicing system is/was getting shut down after several years, and it too was a paid service, and it’s had more than its fair share of ripples in the system.

I can still guarantee if you asked the average Zwifter, if they’d like to see Zwift look graphically better, they’d surely say yes; but if you asked them what device they’re on, they’d probably respond: AppleTV, Tablet, Laptop
Which does look quite poor by comparison to Ultra w/ 4K setting enabled.

And I would also be willing to bet, is if you asked that person if they’d be willing to spend $800 to make Zwift look better, would they?
I’m sure the answer would greatly be no.

They’d rather save the money, buy bike parts, new bibs, etc.

Keep the questions going, and what do you think the average customer would want…? New roads, new competitions, better competitions… features…
I absolutely can guarantee most people would ask for specific features, new routes, etc. long before you start hearing graphics improvements. Purely because they know for graphics to improve, so will the device they own.


I think Starfield was launched anticipating mods, the game had elements of Sid Meyers Non Player Character AI development used in the earlier sims. This is an industry holy grail, that’s only superseded by massive online multiplayer games that still cannot bridge the challenges of robust social interaction that occurs in say in Amazon reviews or the Zwift Forums or work group emails.

Sid Meiers Memoir has a great deal to offer. He was right time and time again. He introduced the entire field of character based customization in a helicopter game. He introduced the first early AI for NPC flight games, he introduced on line social interactions in the Sims.

I prefer biking on Zwift as a warmup, I’m a casual biker with no need to compete. When I join a century race, like 80 percent of people middle aged, I’m competing really only against myself. My favorite event is the Marin Century and then the Sea Otter because the setting are so spectacular.

Zwift is missing a broader market of women that want to get into shape, of kids that want to have fun, of older people and injured people that need 30 minute a day of exercise. All of that requires far more advanced visualizations to be delivered downstream because Zwift is not competing with Trainer Road, they are competing against themselves, and NetFlix, and Amazon Prime Video, and ESPN.

The single largest global market for recreational dollars spent on athletic activity is golf. Golf revenues swallow everything practically, NFL, MLB, NBA, nothing compares to golf revenues and retail sales.

Why is golf so profitable? Golf has constantly changing visualizations, matches on the last day, last 9 holes, totally clutch. One bad putt or chip, that’s a million dollars, visually spectacular, and relatable completely to the real world.

Virtual Golf had basically failed in the home market, but Top Golf, hitting a golf ball as far as you can at a range, beers, and girls and pub food has captured the American imagination. And yes, it depends on radar and virtualization for club speed and ball speed data to compute trajectories and distances.

My point, every dollar spent on improving visualizations on an constantly improving platform with plenty of overhead and bandwidth is not only a dollar well spent, it will deliver an immediate return to scale and a long term return on investment.


That’s an opinion, and one not shared by any of the Zwift users amongst my friends. As the previous poster says, most folk want new routes, a customisable UI and a modicum of additional “gamification” by the way of rewards etc. And that’s only after general stability and error fixes.

I haven’t heard anyone say that they’ve been put off Zwift by the graphics, it’s more the startup cost. Mandating any sort of increase to that is going in exactly the wrong direction.



The think you are right about what average users might want. But let’s look at Roblox.

Market cap of $16 billion, they did something incredibly right. Roblox was released in 2006. They scaled by growing a user base, and November 2015 launched on X-Box 1. September 25th, they just acquired Speechly, AI voice chat moderator platform.

Visualizations on Roblox are now fantastic. Kids spend hours each weekend on the program building player shared environments. I remember my son loved this game, moved onto Minecraft, even more robust, fantastic visualizations now moving to full ray tracing.

Zwift focused on racing in Europe, and in the United States and China, cultures where people actually do bike, the most advanced manufacturing and software development cultures in the world, people generally don’t race bikes, don’t watch bike racing, and simply kids don’t challenge each other to a race. Rather in America, kids want a mountain bike to bomb downhill, so the e-bike is taking off, and women biked on Pelaton to specifically lose weight, that was it. Zwift offered no weight loss program, no social interaction around nutrition or health, they were locked into group racing, that was the DNA.

Well 2023, MyWoosh paid for the UCI license, and targeted Europe for the virtual race, then surprisingly, Australia and South America built out, Arabia was to be expected. MyWoosh paid their Unreal fees, not a problem, they are not charging, but there still is cross revenue, but MyWoosh does not care, they pay Unreal to establish nice relationships, that’s the United Emigrates way, pay to play.

Zwift still has the advantage to unlock user creativity, no different than Roblox, build solid relationships based on shared coding of a virtual world, with fascinating elements, fascinating visuals. That’s still out there, and with all that hard work and group effort, return to KKR on Sandhill Road, and say, see, we made good on our promise, we did it through our users, we empowered our users to contribute any and every idea, we owe it to them, users that pushed us back to the technology limit, back to where we started with new cutting edge ideas, risks, rewards, and innovations, not just biking stationary in virtual circles.

Everyone is taking about AI because it’s AI time in Silicon Valley, every company needs ‘AI’ whether I am for AI or not.

In the gaming space, AI takes about three or four forms:

  1. Superior ray traced visual showcases, (Cyberpunk, etc)
  2. In game NPC activity, (Sims, Bethesda Software)
  3. In game level content generation (Dead Cell, Hades)
  4. In game dialogue and storyline outcome (Starfield, Baldurs Gate 3)

My guess, a three year window, MyWoosh is gearing up, they have deep pockets, money to advertise and induce user growth, world development, copycat-ing, but eventually extremely improved visuals and casual gaming with real world trophies, like real money on a Tuesday night race, or a gift bag, or tickets to a real world biking event. They also have the benefit of a real Sports Franchise affiliation of the Emigrates, a professional showcase team, that serves the entire purpose of Zwift Academy, real world training, for real world class athletes, that complete globally in real world races. You can call it sportwashing, but all of this is Corporate Sponsorship 101.

My point, visualizations at the high end are absolutely critical because Zwift will be on roadshows, and the Zwift platform will be compared 100 percent of the time to a high end trainer, perhaps the latest and greatest Wahoo bike, it’s super seamless, with a high end PC computer, an RTX 4090, I9, 32 GB of memory, 120 frames per second 4k screens, with pretty models helping everyone at the convention trying out the platform for themselves.

That’s the future of MyWoosh for the next three years, Toyota, Lexus, Kia, GM, Ford, everyone that sells anything related to transportation always had the same plan, you show up to the convention all prepared, your best consumer models, pretty super model helpers, glossy brochures, you are there to market, to sell units, to launch new features, year after year. Apple does this every year, lots of fan fair, never misses a beat, the A17 processor it’s so fast, it has AI and a Dynamic Island!

Bottom line, Roblox rallied, consistently attracted new users, one user aged out, two new little kids joined. Never a complaint from a single parent, lots of online communication.

Roblox: 1,443,889 Players Online
Zwift: 2,527 on Watopia, 329 on Makura, 99 on Yorkshire, 451 London, about 4,000 concurrent users on line right now.

Roblox during school hours had 350x more users. It’s between two and three orders of magnitude different. If you try Garmin’s biking application, my guess, they have about 500 users at most right now globally, and it’s not a concurrent MMO system overall.

The largest challenge with the Forums has been the very common practice of blaming the messenger. The deeper reality, Zwift has to answer to its key investor on Sandhill Road and jump start the creativity. I’m just being honest, it seems MyWoosh right now is gearing up to copy and simply has all its financial ducks in a row.



Zwift has to be meeting with KKR every month, discussing their plan to move forward. Last time I met with KKR I got a speeding ticket in Woodside, I wasn’t even speeding, officer apologized, said honestly, the mayor said on Sandhill Road this week we have to give out tickets.

What was I to say, I spent twenty years speeding in California, the one time I’m two miles over the speed limit, I’m busted on the way to a funding meeting for a former Stanford professor of mine regarding a startup.

Sorry, that’s a glitch in the matrix. Anytime there is a glitch in the matrix I take note.

Somewhere, somehow, Zwift lost the UCI sponsorship, the entire at home virtual athletic market tanked, Pelaton, a company’s stock valued at over $160 per share, is now trading at about $4, what, 40x multiples lost in 2 1/2 years. That’s unheard of.

That’s the glitch in the matrix, someone finally pointing out as a user, that it I don’t mind paying more, I like the service, I’m not quitting, but if you are bleeding users, it’s time to up the game, to refocus, to rebrand.

Zwift should change its mascot to a cat. That’s because women love cats, it’s well documented. The entire domestic model of owning a cat was not pioneered by humans, it was pioneered by lazy cat mothers who approached young women, look how cute this little kitten is, it was 99% visual, as cats are lazy and beautiful, manipulative schemers that little girls adore.

Hard to imagine the cat sucker model worked, those little creatures have invaded practically every continent, 1 billion concurrent user homes and paid for by humans, completely unemployed, they do nothing all day, zero responsibility, and yes, they are happy, because cats are smart, they answer to their bosses, young little girls that badger their parents for a pet, promptly get accepted to college, and leave you as a parent to raise the cat.

Again my point. Business 101, your best user, it’s the person that gladly pays for more services, and you deliver the service for less, with a sweat heart long term contract, like a one year or three year subscription, so you can make money as they feed you.

Improving visualizations is a necessity moving forward to attract new users. My brother purchased a Zwift trainer, gave it away and purchased a TacX Neo. Why, road feel.

I like biking way better than golf, but last week, I was golfing at Stanford, I purchased a new Ping Driver on sale for $300, and my older brother said that I needed to drop my wrists just as I started the downswing. I smashed the ball 270 yards, right in front of two Stanford undergraduates, they were impressed, it was an awesome shot, completely visual, paid for the club.

My point, in gaming, visualizations moving forward are paramount, you have to stay ahead of the curve. Pelaton specificity hired handsome buff guys and pretty super athletic girls with tons of energy to lead their classes, and that’s been their most profitable venue. Profits in technology and social media generally follows the user eyeballs. It’s an extremely important issue that management has to be aware of. Again, Roblox nailed it, Fortnight nailed it, PubG nailed it, Minecraft nailed it, each platform has millions of concurrent users 24/7.

One company seems always to be herding cats, it’s an impossible job, but another company, smart like a cat, induces millions of humans to feed them on a regular basis simply by looking pretty.


Anyone else think this thread reads like a ChatGPT student experiment?

Comparing Roblox to Zwift, now I’ve seen it all :rofl:


But I like Scotty

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Personally I’d love to see more realistic photo style lighting and textures. It would do justice to some of the more intricate landscapes.

That’s my own personal wish. The cartoon style gets old eventually. I’ve been on Zwift since 2017 times (using a different account).

When I talk about the quality of lighting, I’m talking about the colours and the shadows:

This is from Flight Sim 2020:

Courchevel Altiport with wet tarmac:

Same location but dry and sunny:

Then compare the last screenshot with these real photos from France where I was last month:

(last one top of Col de la Croix de Fer)

The colours and light are quite similar. That’s what I’d love to see. The textures don’t need to be hugely high resolution, although they actually already are very sharp if you crank up the detail high enough and run a 5K screen at 5120x2880 (or the 6K screen) and take screenshots.

Looks at the the number of threads that cry about the monthly subscription cost…
Looks at the popularity of the Zwift Hub & Kickr Core…
Looks at the reason Zwift introduced the Hub…

Turns out making your platform available to the most users is a good move, as Unity have shown, being beholden to an external party for core functionality is not so good, 3rd Party SaaS only exists while it makes bank.

Zwift competitors may be free, but seem to require higher spec’d PCs, also it’s interesting how little of Rouvey their sponsored YouTubers show! from what I’ve seen of MyWhoosh it seems very dull for all the HQ graphics, so antiseptic, like it’s AI generated :rofl:
The Cartoon style will age far less then the more adavanced realistic graphics, as has always been the way !

As a Dev, it always tickled me how End Users would value the front end look, and under value all the back end complexity.
real world example - it should take a day to create the Twitter front end, but all the competitors are based on Mastadon as Back End Hard !

My 4 yr old 1050Ti still happily runs 100+ group rides around Neokyo, currently the worst case scenario.
My next PC will either have a late Nvidia 4 series or a 5 series, depends when I upgrade, also I can justify the kit, a lot of regular people just use either Apple or Android devices, because that’s all they require.

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I wasn’t guessing. They have announced Apple TV support for Q1 2024.

Roblox is a free to play video game.

How many concurrent users do you think exist on things like TrainerRoad, RGT, MyWoosh, etc. etc. ?

You’re comparing apples to asteroids here; no singular part of them share anything in common bar some basic elements; which would be they exist on a screen in a moving picture format.

Do you genuinely think MORE people would use Zwift if they could design and import their own bicycle to ride?
Probably not…

Because that’s the closest we’d ever get to being able to compare what Roblox is / does.
The reason Roblox blew up is thanks to youtubers, and a new generation of children growing up staring at iPads and other tablets; and then slightly older kids, becoming interested in being able to create something and play with it (Lego sound familiar?)

So far; the only video games you’ve referred to as being huge is because they sponsored big youtubers [influencers] to sit and play on their games to attract more and more attention.

Meanwhile; Zwift here is supporting a whole d*$# women’s racing series in the middle of summer in the northern hemisphere.

You don’t see the NFL being sponsored be Electronic Arts, or NHL being sponsored by Ubisoft.

Believe it or not; not everyone is interested in cycling, because it’s a hard sport.

Meanwhile, how many people want to sit in front of their TV and watch two people yell at each other for an entire evening???


The only way you’ll see something like Zwift grow like a video game; is when cycling becomes so impossibly cheap that everyone on the planet could afford it; and they could see their favorite artist, influencer, etc. doing it too

There is no staying ahead of the curve on any of this.
Every video game you’ve mentioned so far has had some low, and EXTREMELY low parts in their life; and the only saving grace was sponsoring [many] youtubers.

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You are right, Roblox is free to play. Look at their post 2016 user growth. What do you think Roblox did to gain users? What did Minecraft do to gain users? How did the user experience change over time?

I suggested that at the high end, Zwift is not positioned properly, there needs to be both simplification of the UI, improved in game elements, and a reward for desiring highest end graphical ability and highest end trainer hardware.

This is now true in the emerging golf home space, an extremely fair comparison. Golf is not an easy sport. The top golfers in college now are superior athletes, and golfers on tour are superstar athletes.

My brother was hitting golf balls at Rutgers yesterday, he said the Woman’s Golf team was visibly beautiful. That was simply a fact, visibly beautiful and international, that’s what he said. It’s really hard to argue with visibly beautiful, as the metric drives Hollywood, Broadway, Global Fashion, and the true the metric of women’s figure skating, a much more difficult and competitive sport than woman’s biking, visibly beautiful.

Women’s Figure Skating is the marque event of the Winter Olympics and always will be even if skiing is more fun. The sport is amazing, it’s clutch! Gorgeous young women, dedicated, and driven to extreme performance by obsessed families and nations, for their ten minutes on the ice, what an amazing women’s sport, one mistake, you are practically disqualified from winning. That we can’t virtualize.

Golf and biking we can virtualize, flying a plane we can virtualize, flight simulator is another fair comparison. It’s all about improved graphics and world building, year after year, and so is Madden Football, year after year, cutting edge visuals to promote the platform to new users.


I think the bot might be veering a teeny tiny bit off-topic now :rofl:


think MyWhoosh need to update their AI bot with new prompts :rofl:


Zwift is a massively multiplayer online (MMO) cycling and running platform that allows users to train and compete in virtual worlds. It is one of the most popular indoor cycling platforms in the world, with over 3 million users. Zwift is known for its realistic physics, immersive worlds, and social features.

However, Zwift’s graphics are not as realistic as some other video games. This is because Zwift is not a video game, but a fitness platform. The primary goal of Zwift is to provide users with a realistic and engaging cycling experience, not to impress them with cutting-edge graphics.

There are several reasons why Zwift does not need better graphics.

First, better graphics would require more powerful hardware. This would make Zwift more expensive and less accessible to users. Currently, Zwift can be run on a variety of devices, including smartphones, tablets, and computers. This makes Zwift accessible to people of all income levels.

Second, better graphics would require more processing power. This could lead to performance issues, such as frame drops and stuttering. This would make Zwift less enjoyable to use.

Third, better graphics would not necessarily improve the Zwift experience. In fact, some users argue that Zwift’s current graphics are more enjoyable than realistic graphics. This is because Zwift’s graphics are stylized and cartoonish. This makes Zwift feel more fun and less serious.

Finally, Zwift is not about the graphics. It is about cycling. Users are more concerned with the realism of Zwift’s physics and the accuracy of its data than with the appearance of the game world.

Here are some specific benefits of Zwift’s current graphics:

Accessibility: Zwift’s graphics are simple enough to run on a variety of devices, including smartphones, tablets, and computers. This makes Zwift accessible to people of all income levels.
Performance: Zwift’s graphics are not very demanding, so Zwift runs smoothly on even relatively low-powered devices. This means that users do not need to spend a lot of money on a high-end gaming computer to enjoy Zwift.
Aesthetics: Zwift’s stylized and cartoonish graphics are more enjoyable to some users than realistic graphics. This is because Zwift’s graphics make the game feel more fun and less serious.


modern technology is amazing. it’s impossible to tell if i am reading a post generated by an AI or by a reddit poster


Bottom line for me is that if I was really bothered about what things look like, I wouldn’t be wearing lycra when I go outside.

My attitude to Zwift’s graphics is basically the same (even though my avatar looks much better in the shorts than I do).


Accessability is an underrated UI/UX principle and Zwift need to up their game on this too.

Also it’s funny how no one in the anti-zwift camp has talked about that relatively unknown game called Mario Kart (now into it’s 8th edition) and how it’s graphics compare to Zwift, guess it doesn’t fit the narrative, as it’s “cartoon graphics” have aged well, biggest jumps are from the moves from the more limited 8-bit & 16-bit consoles, but it works as it’s playable!

If you can notice the detail in Zwift are you even going hard enough :slight_smile:

I do wonder how many complainers on here are in the pay of competitors, as there are some very specific complaints where Zwift is compared unfavourably to another platform…
There is a difference between a normal end user with an issue to some of the threads that look like ads for other apps!

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Did they start a global pandemic?

Most of Roblox’s users are under 16, with more than 50% under 12. I’d guess Minecraft is similar.

Also, primarily mobile:

I doubt graphics are the main driver.