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Roblox

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Roblox
Roblox logo 2017.svg
Developer(s) Roblox Corporation
Publisher(s) Roblox Corporation
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows, OS X, iOS, Android,[1] Xbox One,[2] PlayStation 4 (in development),[3]
Release 2005 (beta)
2006 (public release)
Genre(s) Massively multiplayer online role-playing game
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Roblox is a user-generated massively multiplayer online social gaming platform developed and published by the Roblox Corporation and released in 2006.[4]

In the game, players are able to create their own virtual worlds and design their own games within the platform.[5] Games on Roblox can be designed using a sandbox edition of the programming language Lua. Their in-game currency, Robux, can be rewarded to users and developers, or bought, and which in turn can be converted to cash through the Developer Exchange program.[6] The game is designed to be family-friendly, with the ability of running on a wide variety of devices and platforms, including PC, Mac, Android, iOS, Xbox, and Oculus.

As of 2017, Roblox has over 500,000 game creators designing games, and 30 million active monthly players, who have logged more than 300 million hours of game play.[7][8][9][10]

Gameplay

One of the default character models
A fourth generation (4.0) Roblox character, a common typical package.

In Roblox games, players explore 3-D worlds. Activities in the game world include exploring, crafting items, resource gathering, minigames, and combat.

Players can customize their virtual characters with various hats, head shapes, body shapes, clothing, and gear. Players may create their own articles of clothing. However, selling player-created articles of clothing and collectible items require Builders Club, but non-premium players may still create T-shirts, which are decals attached to the front of a player's torso. Players can collect and trade items, especially limited edition collector items.

Social interaction

Players can add other people they meet in the game to their friends list. Since 2011, this can be done while playing.[11][12] On February 4, 2015, a new update to replace the Friends and Best Friends system, named Friends and Followers, was introduced.[13] This allows more personal game play if wanted. This update allows a maximum of 200 friends and infinite followers. Players also have the option to join community groups.[14] After joining, players can then advertise their group, participate in group relations, and set their primary group.[15][16][17]

Building

A car on a road in Roblox Studio 2017
Editing using Roblox Studio 2017

The game development and building is done via an application called Roblox Studio. It is a free program that comes with Roblox.[18]

Players use the Roblox Studio built-in building system to construct places with bricks from varying colors and shapes. Players also are able to use user made plugins and tools to build. Players also have the ability to scroll through the Roblox Library and find free models and scripts. Roblox also created an Official Model Maker system where talented model makers are able to create and make their creations visible on the front page of the Roblox Library model section.[19]

Players can use the programming language Lua to dynamically change the environment of the game.[20] Also, plugins can be developed with Lua to be used in Roblox Studio.[21]

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.[22][23][24]

In early 2006, the game's currency was Roblox Points, which were later replaced with Robux. During 2006 and 2007, Roblox added features that included a messaging system, a search system, and avatar customization.[25] Roblox badges were first introduced on December 22, 2006.[26][27][28] 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.[29][30] In August 2007, Roblox added the Builders Club, a premium membership, and applied server improvements.[31][32]

In 2011, more than 5.4 million games were created by users.[33] The first Roblox conference, called the Roblox Rally, was held on August 1, 2011, at the Exploratorium in San Francisco, California. This was then renamed to the Roblox Game Conference, and then again to Bloxcon in 2013, which was held in multiple cities.[34] 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.[35][36][37]

On December 11, 2012, Roblox released an iOS version of the game.[38][39][40][41][42]

On April 1, 2012, Roblox was hacked, with hackers gaining access to moderators' accounts to make them say graphic and inappropriate things. In addition, hackers decreased the prices of some goods drastically and changed their names, while taking away from or awarding Robux to users. Roblox staff took the site offline after the attacks, and administrators were able to undo all the changes, reverting the entire system back to a previous form.[43] In December 2013, an animation plugin was released. Users also became able to insert basic humanoids through the interface of the studio.[44]

On October 1, 2013, Roblox released the Developer's Exchange. The feature allows users to exchange their Robux into USD. The requirements to use the program are a minimum threshold of 100,000 Robux, membership in the Outrageous Builders Club, and a valid Paypal account. As of November 29, 2016, the current trade ratio is 500 Robux to $1.[45][6] As of September 2016, Roblox said that they had paid out $7 million to community developers.[46]

On May 31, 2015, a feature named Smooth Terrain was added, increasing the graphical fidelity and changing the physics engine from a block-oriented style to a smoother and more realistic style.[47] On November 20, 2015, Roblox was launched on Xbox One, with an initial selection of 15 games chosen by Roblox staff.[48][49] New Roblox games for this console will have to go through an approval process, and are subject to the Entertainment Software Ratings Board standards.[50][51] In summer 2015, all combat-related badges were discontinued.[52]

On April 14, 2016, Roblox removed their secondary currency, called Tickets. During the thirty days before it was removed, in-game items were released that could only be bought with Tickets as exclusive, commemorative items. The Trade Currency system was removed to coincide with the removal of Tickets.[53] 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.[54][55] 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.[56] The following month, during an episode of The Next Level, Jack Hendrik announced that Roblox would be ported to the PlayStation 4.[3]

At the game's ten-year anniversary mark, it had reached a milestone of thirty million monthly active users, nearly 900,000 concurrent users and more than 300 million hours of use. Its top game creators were making as much as $50,000 a month in revenue.[57] On September 28, 2016, Roblox released R15, a new joint system for avatars that uses 15 joints instead of 6. This allowed for a more animated look. Also released were animations that change idle, walking, jumping, climing and other animations.[58]

The safe chat feature was removed[when?] 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.[59] On January 10, 2017, Jazwares unveiled designs for toys based on Roblox characters. The characters are similar to Lego minifigures, standing 2.5 inches tall and having interchangeable body parts, clothes, and tools. The toys were released on February 5.[60][61]

Charitable giving

Roblox has donated a portion of its sales to a number of charitable causes, including relief for the Haiti earthquake and the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, as well as for research into finding cures for cancer and ALS. A sale of 23,935 in-game hats generated $10,445.80 for the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in just two days.[62][63][64][65][66]

References

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  2. ^ McCaffrey, Ryan (September 24, 2015). "Roblox Helps You Make Your Own Xbox One Games". IGN. Retrieved March 12, 2016. 
  3. ^ a b Hendrik, Jack (July 1, 2016). "The Next Level: 150k Celebration". Twitch.tv. Retrieved February 20, 2017. PS4, soon, it's in production, that has been confirmed, we are working on it for PS4. 
  4. ^ Neil C., Hughes (July 15, 2016). "How This User-Generated Video Game Is Leading The Way With Innovation and VR". Inc Magazine. 
  5. ^ Needleman, Rafe (June 14, 2011). "Roblox: A virtual world of Lego-like blocks". CNET. Retrieved February 29, 2012. 
  6. ^ a b Kain, Erik (November 29, 2016). "Roblox Is Giving Young Video Game Developers A Chance To Shine (And Make Big Money)". Forbes. 
  7. ^ Wolverton, Troy (October 20, 2016). "Roblox: Is unusual virtual playground the next Minecraft?". The Mercury News. 
  8. ^ Lechner, Ido (December 14, 2016). "Startup Makes VR Available Across All Platforms". psfk. 
  9. ^ Hughes, Neil C (July 15, 2016). "How This User-Generated Video Game Is Leading The Way With Innovation and VR". Inc. 
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  32. ^ LaRouche, Brandon (March 31, 2012). Basic ROBLOX Lua Programming. Double Trouble Studio. p. 237. ISBN 9780985451301. 
  33. ^ Baszucki, David (February 23, 2012). "5.4 Million Games Created in 2011". Roblox Corporation. 
  34. ^ Fackler, Alan (June 29, 2013). "BLOXcon Is Coming Which Staff Will be Where". Roblox Corporation. 
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  58. ^ [username], tarabyte. "The R15 Avatar is Here!". ROBLOX Blog. ROBLOX. Retrieved 27 April 2017. 
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External links