World builder

This may sound like an unattainable feature but thought I’d share anyways.

A world builder that allows users to create their own worlds and routes would be an incredible feature in Zwift. How great would it be if Zwift became a platform that lets riders and runners to create virtual versions of their favorite IRL routes or make up their own virtual riding areas?

Some individual features could include:

  • Creating a route based off a .gpx/.tcx file (simulate distance and elevation gains)
  • “Drawing” your own routes
  • Decorating routes with assets (trees, buildings, bridges, banners, foliage, fences, etc…)
  • Selecting terrain types (asphalt, gravel, cobble, dirt)
  • Publishing worlds and allowing other riders to ride in your creations


  • Zwift course development currently seems limited by the (very talented) in house team of artists and developers. This tool would allow the number of worlds to grow as fast as users can create them.
  • Allow players to experience virtually any place in the world. One of the best parts of Zwift is being able to experience places you’ll never be able to go IRL. Alpe D’huez, London, Innsbruck are so fun to ride because they make you feel like you are there experiencing the local scenery and gradient changes. How cool would it be to be able to experience any place on earth?
  • Simulating real world routes would allow athletes to train for specific events and allow them to experience how the turns and gradient will feel.
  • Historically, players have created some of the best in game content when a platform for creation exists.
  • Allows users to contribute to Zwift after their workouts have ended. There’s not really anything left to do in Zwift after your workout ends for the days. Some days it would be fun to mess about in Zwift without having to sit on a bike and spin.


  • Let’s be real this would be a huge undertaking involving tons of infrastructure on the server, engine, and asset side of things.

This is a huge idea but it was fun to dream big :slight_smile:

Very cool idea. I remember in one golf game for the original Nintendo console, users could design and play their own course.

Personally, I’d like to see native Bluetooth/BLE support for the Windows platform just as OS X, iOS, and Android has for directly connecting my trainer and sensors directly to my BLE enable PC.

Don’t think it will happen since the engine belongs to Zwift, I believe they would also like to keep some control over the content. I mean it may happen in the far future, but I would highly doubt it is on their road map at the moment. Games that allow users to build worlds usually use an open source code.

This has been suggested before on the old forums.

Zwift would still stay closed source, of course. My suggestion is to give players a tool for creation. They could still regulate what content goes live. There are a handful of popular games in recent years that follow this model and they have proven that players are capable of creating incredible in game content when given the tools to do so.

I loved the idea

I like your idea, some of the best planes in FlightSim have been created by very talented people for free and it would be cool to check out you favourite rides.

However I can’t see that ever working. Have you watched the great videos they have done showing the massive amount of work to design a course? I’d post you a link but the hotel here blocks all thing YouTube :frowning:

Another problem would be how could I access your world? The storage space in the cloud would be a massive requirement or some complex download required.

It would be cool if Zwift could run with an option for just you team, sometimes Zwift is so busy, but maybe that’s part of the attraction.

New York is coming but they really do need another 30 + for it to become exciting. While these worlds are being created which obviously takes months they should maybe put up 20 or so best Strava segments around the world ??

I think it is a great idea however Zwift are keen to keep riders together rather than split them up around different worlds and therefore losing the community element of riding with other riders. Imagine there are 100 different courses with 1500 riders at any one time that would mean only 10 riders per world if everyone was spread out evenly which would be boring.

Personally I dislike Richmond and not a huge fan of Innsbruck as I think they have limited options and routes compared to Watopia and London. What I would like is to be able to ride from one world into another all from the same starting point. So in Watopia you can’t access the Jungle until level 12, imagine that link that takes you through to the Jungle taking you instead to one of the other worlds like London, Richmond or Innsbruck. This would mean you can ride any world you like when you like rather than what I’m doing now and changing the date on my pc when I want to ride Alpe Du Zwift instead of Richmond!

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Brilliant idea! A Sim City 2000 style interface for building routes would be perfect in my opinion. I also love the idea of dynamic routes based off of .gpx/.tcx files.

I think if Zwift could make a tool that all of us could use to make routes in a afternoon, they could just use that tool and make hundreds of routes every week.

These things take time, i would guess they do a lot of work to make tools to make it easier and faster to make routes.

Now this would be very cool! I imagine a LOT of work goes into making/updating/maintaining the 4 worlds we already have, but if there was some way of converting a GPS route file even into some basic virtual world (just a road surrounded by plain grass at a gradient determined by said road, no real artwork as such), that would be awesome, if only for personal training purposes and not necessarily to share as a bells & whistles publically available thing.

@James_Robson: there are many programs that can do that, my 10 year old elite software can take a Gpx file and overlay it on google maps and you can ride your route in google earth. But it is boring being alone in a boring world.

Thanks for the info Gerrie. I might have to investigate some of these other options - Zwift is the only one I’ve used so far.

Thanks for bringing this up and for the well detailed outline. This would be a great feature, I really hope that Zwift can see the benefit here for athletes that are training for races away from home. My personal desire as an athlete as well as a professional coach would be to have the ability to upload GPX routes of destination races and events around the world to help with training and preparing for specific courses. I personally wouldn’t expect or need anything fancy and having the routes generated automatically would save time. Being able to see the map, the gradient changes and the turns to help prepare mentally as well as physically for the race would be a great training tool.

It doesn’t seem like that absurd of an idea to me: for decades most of the popular games in the gaming industry have provided means to be extended either with new maps or new physics / content. It’s not even that uncommon for such community efforts to end up taking the original platform to an entirely “new level” :wink:

I love also the idea …
I do not know if you know the world of flight simulator, ( FSX, P3D … ) but that’s the way it is and today it’s a program with hundreds of add-ons for airports and a detailed world that only one team could never have built alone!
It is thanks to an “SDK” development kit that other talented teams have been able to give a great perinity to the program, which has been going on for more than 30 years!
Developing an SDK kit for Zwift and allowing the creation to the one who has the time, the patience, the desire to provide work for the creation of ADD-on would be great and it is the survival of Zwift that depends on it. before another qualified industry gets the idea …
yes, it is necessary to gather, but flight simulator which has hundreds of airport available, during online events happens that even to gather the pilots at the same place by hundreds …

I’m developer for Flight Simulator … build an detailed airport ask more 1 year work and ± 1000 hours !!!
I’m imagine the work for on Zwift world , but versus Flight Simulator, adventage with zwift, all textures are not photorealiste, that’s just a drawing, that’s more simple versus P3D and FSX !

Hi all,
I would like to see the ability to upload GPX/TCX files that can be loaded into Zwift in a “custom world” or Included under the country of origin world. Routes would be basic in layout in that you could only select ‘Town’, ‘Country’ or Desert style. Obviously would not be true to life but would offer the community the chance to share their favourite ride with the rest of the zwifters. Zwift would still have control and able to vet the routes before they are published.
Personally would like to ride some routes in countries like France, Spain and Italy.
Just a thought anyway

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Everyone wants to share their local patch where they ride, so the pull is obvious.

It would mean a big change in the ZWift business model, changing from ZWift controlled to community led worlds means more than just developing the tools to allow people to do it - there are also licensing considerations, legal problems, quality control, moderation, and not least, a change in abilities within ZWift (moving from building worlds to building tools to build worlds is a big people problem).

It is not impossible, but is is a big job with potentially big rewards. Lego almost went broke before they allowed their user communities to thrive and set direction through hundreds of user groups, Apple of course led the way in their app store, and Nintendo, PS & XBox have been leveraging game developers for years.

But, you don’t have to go direct to community builders - cyclists are not necessarily adept at building worlds, and the tools to allow anyone to build them would be a massive undertaking. Most companies going through that transition leverage through skilled partners, providing guru-level tools to people who have the time, inclination, and skills do do a decent job of it without having to develop super sophisticated build tools.

It’s be a nice thing to do, having a variety of worlds to ride would be great, riding in places you used to live would be awesome, especially with friends that still live there (I wonder if you could liink up with Strava for a live feed ???).

Good luck, it’s a big change, but if you want to keep growing your business, then…

There are other cycling app competitors that allow you to either design your own or upload a gps file of an actual ride. So if you are interested, look at some of the other apps. I doubt zwift will go down this path.

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