Zwift Update for December
New unlocks and new ways to ride are coming in December’s Zwift Update
If you’re a keen Zwifter then there’s some new features coming your way in December’s Zwift Update. So as the weather turns decidedly inclement here in the northern hemisphere and riding outside becomes less attractive, these new features couldn’t be more timely.
Zwift goes all the way to 100!
First up is the new level structure, something that may not be familiar to traditional cyclists. While riding on Zwift you earn points as you ride. These experience points (XP) serve a number of purposes. The first is to tell other riders how much riding you’ve done. They can tell this by looking at what level you are, represented by a number, starting from 1. As you gain points you ‘level up’, get 1000XP and you go from 1 to 2; well done!
As you pass each new level you also get an ‘unlock’. This can be a new type of bike, wheels or just a new hat! The level system is just meant to be a bit of fun to keep you engaged and riding. Imagine you weren’t going to ride today, but remembered you only needed another 50XP to get that shiny new bike, so you jump on.
Previously the highest level you could get to was 60, Zwift have upped that and now you can go all the way to 100! This means more challenges and more unlocks for those that like to be rewarded for riding their bikes. Each new level will have new rewards, so you can expand your virtual wardrobe and garage.
Another feature to help you level up and to keep you riding consistently is the Ride Streak. If you ride two or more times a week on Zwift, you’ll get an extra bump in XP helping you to level up faster. How much of a bump I hear you ask? Well, for each of the first two rides of the first week of a streak, you’ll will earn 300 XP. In the second week, Zwifting will earn you an additional 100 XP per ride for a total of 400 XP per ride. Carry on for a third and an extra 200 XP is available (500 total) for the first two rides. If you keep the streak going beyond week three, you’ll earn 500 XP for every ride for as long as you can keep it going!
Climb Portal Updates
Another Zwift feature that’s being updated are the Climb Portals. These were introduced in July 2023 and are colourful, stylised renditions of real world climbs. Whereas normally Zwift populates their virtual world with bushes, tree, squirrels, dinosaurs and other stuff, the Climb Portals are much simpler. Ride through one of the portals and you’ll be riding on a simple path that changes colour to show it’s gradient. There are no distractions or attempts to create a realistic landscape; it’s just you and the climb. As of today there are seventeen climbs, but because of their simplified nature, Zwift are adding more all the time.
This new update will allow Zwifters to tackle different versions of each climb. You can now take on a GPS-accurate 100% version, a monumental 125% version, or easier 50% and 75% versions. Each will have its own leader-board and will show Zwifters what percentile of climbers they’re in. Use the HoloReplay feature and you can chase your best time up the climbs, all the time earning those vital XP. Zwift will continue to offer a Climb of the Month in the France Climb Portal and a rotating selection of climbs in the Watopia Portal. You can see a schedule of climbs here.