Roblox is a multi-player gaming platform that’s been around since the early 2000s, but most of the world discovered it earlier this year after a global pandemic and national lockdowns forced us all indoors, spurring us to find new forms of connection. A quick Google search will explain how this particular gaming verse works – gamer-created content on servers able to host large swaths of players from around the world that appeals to users looking for more inventive, niche-style play, a majority of whom are under the age of 18. That Google search will also reveal that adults – parents, older siblings, millennials looking for entry-level gaming avenues – are just cluing into how popular this massive online world is with the next generation.
From NY Times articles on how it’s become the online sandbox for “tweens” to op-eds on how its use as a kind of digital babysitter for parents who prefer to spend their time doomsday scrolling on Twitter, the general consensus is this: Roblox, with its 150 million global users spending billions of hours gaming, is the internet’s equivalent of a schoolyard playground where only the cool kids can congregate.
Of course, that’s not the whole story of Roblox. It’s not even why the platform, which started as a way for physics students to model in-class experiments, is, for some, a prototype for what the future of gaming could look like. Instead, Roblox’s appeal and its influence in the Metaverse – a new kind of “human co-experience” its pushing that combines gaming, social media, and entertainment – is how free robux generator committed it seems to ushering in a new kind of gamer, one that takes control over the content they interact with, in a refreshingly empowering way.
Forget “choose your own adventure,” Roblox is allowing passionate gamers to make their own adventure. That’s the real appeal of the platform.
At least it is for young developers like Mimi_Dev, whose debut game “Dance Your Blox Off” currently has over 90 million plays.
“I’ve been creative since I was young, so making games was just another form of art for me,” Dev tells UPROXX.
She had been drawn to juggernaut style competitive gaming when she first logged onto Roblox in 2013 looking for a digital space to house her 3D projects. She was a gamer, sure, but she didn’t play any titles on the platform until years later. What interested her about Roblox was how easy it would be to take this idea she’d been mulling – a virtual dance studio – and transform it into a socially-interactive experience, complete with props, purchasable costumes, and team-up capabilities.
And she’s not alone. While Roblox launched with a handful of games for users to play, the company has since shifted its user experience goals. They see themselves as a facilitator rather than a generator of content.
“People really enjoy building their own worlds and inviting their friends to play in them,” Tami Bhaumik, VP of Marketing and Digital Civility at Roblox, says. “[That] user-generated content (UGC) [is] our secret sauce.”
She’s talking about games like “Jailbreak,” an amusing role-playing game where inmates must escape prison life and outrun the cops that has had over 3 billion plays since it was released. Or “MeepCity,” another brightly colored role-playing arena where users are invited to hang out, customize animal-like creatures called Meeps, build homes, sell goods, and complete tasks for money or Robux, that they can then spend buying merch.
“There are thousands of different sub-communities on Roblox: war, anime, fashion, trading, FPS, etc. It’s easy to find a community that you fit in with,” explains Laine London, a 23-year-old male creator from Canada who was first introduced to the Roblox platform by his younger cousin. London’s “Book Of Monsters” has over 30 million plays, but unlike Dev, he didn’t arrive on the platform with the intention of crafting his own gaming experience.
“[A] big part of my motivation was the games I played regularly had some bugs,” London adds, “weren’t being updated much, and I had a lot of ideas of my own I wanted to add, so I wanted to recreate them.”
Roblox simply provided the tools for him to do that.
“I didn’t know how to code,” London says. “I don’t think I would have gotten far without all the backend Roblox provides like the servers and the physics engine.”
He’s talking about the Roblox Studio, which offers tutorials and step-by-step processes for everything from understanding Lua, the programming language used to build games on the platform, to GUI animations, sound effects, cross-platform development, and more. The Developer Hub is designed to make creation – whether you’re an experienced coder or a first-time player – easy, accessible, and universal. It’s that lack of gatekeeping, that invitation to engage with content, that’s turning Roblox into something more than just a space for multi-player fun – it’s becoming an incubator for emerging talent and an example of what opening up the world of game creation can mean for the next generation of play.