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Roblox is a massively multiplayer online platform that allows users to design their own games and play a wide variety of different types of games created by the developer or other users. Sometimes compared to Minecraft, Roblox is a website and app that hosts social network virtual world games constructed of Lego-like virtual blocks.[3]

Roblox
Roblox logo 2017.svg
Roblox's logo as of January 10, 2017.[1]
Developer(s) Roblox Corporation
Publisher(s) Roblox Corporation
Director(s) David Baszucki
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, iOS, Android, Xbox One, Oculus Rift [2]
Release April 6, 2006
Genre(s) Massively multiplayer online game
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Founder and CEO David Baszucki started testing the first demos in 2004 under the name DynaBlocks.[4] In 2005, it was renamed Roblox and became available for PCs.[5] The platform was officially released in 2006 by the Roblox Corporation.[6] As of 2016, Roblox has 30 million active monthly users.[7][8]

Contents

Gameplay

 
Editing using Roblox Studio 2017

Roblox is a sandbox game which allows players to create their very own games using its proprietary engine, Roblox Studio. Games and assets for games are built by using "parts", similar to those of lego parts. Players can use the programming language Lua to dynamically change the environment of the game and program their own games.[9] Plugins can also be developed with Lua to be used in Roblox Studio.[10]

Users are able to advertise and sponsor their own game on the website by bidding. Users are also able to create gamepasses, which can be used to give consumers perks for buying the gamepass, etc.; "Developer Products", which can be purchased unlimited times, similar to the likes of microtransactions and badges, to reward players for doing a certain task. A percentage of the revenue from gamepasses and developer products is given to Roblox.

Roblox is played by using a keyboard's WASD and arrow keys or by using a mouse, touch pad, or other input device. Players can switch between first person mode and third person mode.

 
A fourth generation (4.0) Roblox character (Robloxian), a commonly used package.

Roblox allows players to buy, sell and create virtual items. Shirts, T-shirts and pants can be bought by anyone but only players with Builders Club membership can sell shirts, T-shirts and pants. Only Roblox admins can sell hats, gear and packages on the platform. Hats with a "Limited" status, or "Limited" hats, can only be sold on the Roblox catalog with Builders' Club.

Players are allowed to wear at the most 3 hats, 1 shirt, 1 T-shirt and 1 pair of pants, to carry 1 gear item. Players buy items with "Robux", which can be obtained by revenue from games made by the user, revenue made from shirts, t-shirts or pants, revenue from selling "Limited" hats or microtransactions. A percentage of the revenue made in "Robux" goes to Roblox.

Roblox allows for the creation of groups. After joining, players can then advertise their group, participate in group relations, and set their primary group. Players that own groups can also manage roles, make shoutouts, post on the group wall, moderate the group wall, etc. Groups can only be owned by Builders' Club members.

Groups can publish their own clothing (Shirts, T-shirts and Pants) and games can also be published as a group game and all revenue from group clothing and games goes towards group funds. Group funds specifically are used to run ads to promote groups and can also be paid out using the "Group Payout" system which could contribute to creating new roles, etc. Clans can also be created. Clans are groups that compete against each other in Player Points Leaderboard rankings. Player Points are points that can be rewarded for achieving a certain goal, etc. and can be given out by developers to players.[11]

Development

Roblox was created by co-founders David Baszucki and Erik Cassel in 2004. Roblox – a portmanteau of the words "robots" and "blocks", launched in beta version that year. The website was officially launched in 2006.[12][13]

In March 2007, Roblox became compliant with COPPA, with the addition of safe chat, a change that limited users under the age of thirteen to communicating by selecting predefined messages from a menu.[14] In August 2007, Roblox added the Builders Club, a premium membership, and applied server improvements.[15]

In December 2011, Roblox also held their first Hack Week, an annual event where Roblox developers work on innovative outside-the-box ideas for new developments to present to the company.[16][17]

On December 11, 2012, Roblox released an iOS version of the game.[18][19] In an interview with Massively, CEO David Baszucki stated he also wanted the game to be available on the digital stores of "Android, Windows, Steam, Mac, Chrome, [and] Amazon..."[20]

On May 31, 2015, a feature named Smooth Terrain was added, increasing the graphical fidelity of the terrain and changing the physics engine from a block-oriented style to a smoother and more realistic style.[21] On November 20, 2015, Roblox was launched on Xbox One, with an initial selection of 15 games chosen by Roblox staff.[22][23] New Roblox games for this console will have to go through an approval process, and are subject to the Entertainment Software Ratings Board standards.[24][25]

In April 2016, Roblox launched Roblox VR for Oculus Rift. At the time of release, more than ten million games were available in 3-D.[26] Also by this time, Roblox had 30 million monthly active users, and a peak of 900,000 concurrent users.[27] Around the same time period, the safe chat feature was removed and replaced by a system based on a whitelist with a set of acceptable words for users under 13 years old and on a "black list" for other users. This new system allows users under the age of 13 to create content on the website, which they were not able to do previously.[28]

In June 2016, the company launched a version compatible with Windows 10. While the game has had a PC presence since 2004 with its web version, this is the first time it was upgraded with a standalone launcher built for Windows.[29]

On January 10, 2017, Jazwares unveiled designs for toys based on Roblox characters. The characters are similar to Lego minifigures, having interchangeable body parts, clothes, and tools. The toys were released on February 5, 2017[30][31] Whilst purchasing toys, buyers would be gifted scratch codes to redeem for in-game items.

During the 2017 Roblox Developers Conference, officials said that creators on Roblox (about 1.7 million)[32] collectively earned at least $30 million USD in 2017.[33] One creator told Business Insider that funds from his creation covered his undergraduate education at Duke University.[5]

References

  1. ^ Baszucki, David (10 January 2017). "Introducing Our Next-Generation Logo". ROBLOX Corporation. Retrieved 28 June 2017. 
  2. ^ McCaffrey, Ryan (September 24, 2015). "Roblox Helps You Make Your Own Xbox One Games". IGN. Retrieved March 12, 2016. 
  3. ^ Needleman, Rafe (June 14, 2011). "Roblox: A virtual world of Lego-like blocks". CNET. Retrieved February 29, 2012. 
  4. ^ Neil C., Hughes (July 15, 2016). "How This User-Generated Video Game Is Leading The Way With Innovation and VR". Inc Magazine. 
  5. ^ a b "A video game you've never heard of has turned three teens into multimillionaires — and it's just getting started". Business Insider. Retrieved 2017-10-10. 
  6. ^ Fennimore, Jack (12 July 2017). "Roblox: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know". Heavy. Retrieved 30 July 2017. 
  7. ^ Wolverton, Troy (October 20, 2016). "Roblox: Is unusual virtual playground the next Minecraft?". The Mercury News. 
  8. ^ Takahashi, Dean (December 20, 2016). "At 10, Roblox surpasses 30 million monthly users and 300 million hours of engagement". Venture Beat. 
  9. ^ "Roblox as an educational program language". Kids Like. December 9, 2008. Retrieved January 24, 2009. 
  10. ^ McDowell, Guy (June 29, 2009). "Roblox - A Cool Lego-Based Free Virtual World for Kids". makeuseof.com. Retrieved October 11, 2009. 
  11. ^ Sims, Tony (February 7, 2013). "Interview With David Baszucki, Founder & CEO of Roblox". Wired. Retrieved February 9, 2017. 
  12. ^ "Roblox Info on BusinessWeek". BusinessWeek. Retrieved September 20, 2009. 
  13. ^ "Roblox". Keen Gamer. Retrieved February 9, 2017. 
  14. ^ Dickson, Jeremy (June 23, 2015). "SuperAwesome and Roblox join forces on kid-safe advertising". kidscreen. 
  15. ^ LaRouche, Brandon (March 31, 2012). Basic ROBLOX Lua Programming. Double Trouble Studio. p. 237. ISBN 9780985451301. 
  16. ^ Milian, Mark (December 2, 2012). "Hackathons move beyond Silicon Valley". SFGate. Retrieved February 9, 2017. 
  17. ^ Chaykowski, Kathleen (August 31, 2012). "Lua language helps kids create software". SFGate. Retrieved February 9, 2017. 
  18. ^ Grubb, Jeffrey (December 12, 2012). "Roblox goes mobile in time for the holidays". VentureBeat. 
  19. ^ Clark, Matt (December 12, 2012). "ROBLOX Brings Millions of User Created Games to iOS". Mac|Life. 
  20. ^ Bryan, Karen (December 26, 2012). "MMO Family: Roblox CEO David Baszucki talks mobile app, plans for the future". Massively. 
  21. ^ "Roblox user-generated world moves from blocky terrain to smooth 3D". VentureBeat. Retrieved June 3, 2015. 
  22. ^ Woods, Ben (September 24, 2015). "Roblox’s community-made games are coming to Xbox One". The Next Web. 
  23. ^ Grubb, Jeff (September 24, 2015). "Roblox comes to Xbox One, joins Minecraft in the growing player-made content space on consoles". VentureBeat. 
  24. ^ Grubb, Jeff (January 27, 2016). "Roblox launches on Xbox One with 15 player-created games — watch us play them". VentureBeat. 
  25. ^ Parrish, Robin (September 25, 2015). "Roblox Comes to Xbox One In December". Tech Times. 
  26. ^ Gaudiosi, John (April 15, 2016). "This Company Just Introduced 20 Million People to Oculus Rift". Fortune. Retrieved December 13, 2016. 
  27. ^ Takahasi, Dean (December 20, 2016). "At 10, Roblox surpasses 30 million monthly users and 300 million hours of engagement". VentureBeat. 
  28. ^ "Roblox". Australian Office of the Children's eSafety Commissioner. Retrieved December 13, 2016. 
  29. ^ Grubb, Jeff (June 10, 2016). "After Xbox One success, Roblox now has a dedicated Windows 10 app". VentureBeat. 
  30. ^ Takahashi, Dean. "Roblox launches toys based on its user-generated games". VentureBeat. Retrieved January 11, 2017. 
  31. ^ Evangelista, Benny. "Roblox turning user-designed video game characters into toys". Retrieved January 12, 2017. 
  32. ^ "This game turned players into $50,000-a-month entrepreneurs — now it has a plan to help them make $1.68 million a year". Business Insider. Retrieved 2017-10-10. 
  33. ^ "Hobbyist developers will make $30 million via 'Roblox' this year". Engadget. Retrieved 2017-10-10. 

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