VRChat could have eliminated most of the pain of implementing EAC by just slowing their roll. They sprung this suddenly on the community without notice. SUPRISE! And the big problem with that is that mods have been the solution to several critical issues. Accessibility for people with disabilities or medical conditions is just an example of this. There is much more, including fixes needed for Pimax headsets to work properly. There hasn’t been time for the community to even realize the full extent of the ramifications of blocking all mods.
These are issues which didn’t put great pressure on VRChat to resolve them because mods already solved them. But then when VRChat suddenly blocks all mods, all of these critical issues are suddenly in full force all at once.
My Pimax 8KX didn’t work properly in VRChat without using a mod. So this effectively blocks me using my VR headset in VRChat now. There’s been a Canny for this problem for years, and VRChat hasn’t fixed it. It’s a really easy fix, too. There was mod that fixed it. But now that’s blocked. So now me and other Pimax users who play VRChat are screwed.
VRChat should have advertised a date in the future when it would implement EAC, let the community work out the ramifications of that and determine how that changes priorities, and then address all of the critical needs mods were being used for before implementing EAC. According to a message from Tupper on the Discord, they had been planning this since January so they could have given the community 6 months of advanced notice, but instead they set it up as an ambush. They even fast tracked it through open beta in a single day! VRChat needed to phase this in, not just drop it on us and figure they can handle the fallout and repair the damage as quickly as they can afterwards.
Whether or not EAC in itself is a good idea or will produce any of the beneficial effects VRChat hoped for is another matter. But without a doubt the way VRChat very deliberately kept their intentions secret for several months, figured they knew best and fully understood the ramifications without community involvement, had it pointed out to them that there were critical ramifications to this that they had missed, and yet went ahead and did it as they had planned anyway was the worst way they could have done it. Most of the pain of this would have been avoidable by giving the community advanced notice and actually listening to their concerns even if they still rolled out EAC on the same actual date in this alternate reality.
As it is, there are people with disabilities and medical conditions who have now been severed from the only social life they were able to have for however long it takes VRChat devs to provide accessibility features for them. That is cruel, and there is no reason that it had to happen. VRChat could have accomplished their plans without doing this to them.
Also, losing portable mirrors isn’t critical, but ouch.