VRChat has announced a security update for the popular virtual reality online social world where users roam around online instances as an avatar communicating with others. The announcement of the security update looks to bring an end to VRChat mods which means third-party tools will no longer work, and for some, this could mean the platform becomes inaccessible.
“…we’re aware that many legitimate users install modifications to add features they wish VRChat had natively.” the official blog post about the implementation of Easy Anti Cheat (EAC) mentions. “We’re very aware of the popularity of these modifications, and we’re aware that EAC means those modifications are gone, too.”
Despite acknowledging the importance of some mods, the studio is reportedly working on implementing features. “…we’ve been working towards native implementations of features like a main menu that’s usable even when you’re lying down, a portable mirror that you can use to calibrate your full-body tracking (or provide a face-cam), and more – all planned for upcoming releases.”
One particular mod that was brought to our attention (Thanks, Morgan!) was this tweet about VRC-CC. The mod is one that adds closed captions to VR worlds in the game that are designed for watching movies. However, VRChat’s removal of mod support will mean Deaf and hard-of-hearing folk wanting to watch films with friends or others from the community will be at a loss.
In addition, as already confirmed by the team to be heading to a later version, the mod that allows users to use a menu while lying down is useful for mobility disabilities. Although with no confirmed date for these native implementations, users who may require the features will have to wait until something is officially announced.
Numerous tweets online from the community seem to point to VRChat being “notorious” for the lack of accessibility available in the game.
For those still using VRChat mods currently, the Q&A highlights that users will be unable to launch VRChat. “If you are currently using mods, you will receive an error on your screen and you will be prevented from loading into VRChat. Users that attempt to load a mod while running VRChat will be disconnected and the application will shut down.”
The Q&A also notes that the team is aware of mods for features players wish the game had natively. “Many of these features are things we’d love to add into VRChat – some have even been planned for years! However, developing something like VRChat is a challenge, and involves a lot of prioritization, triage, and sometimes putting things on a backlogged list that you really wish you didn’t have to.”