- Roblox might not be as famous as a children’s game like Fortnite or Minecraft, but it recently announced that it’s quite 100 million active monthly players.
- It has flown more under the media radar than those rivals, leaving parents whose children are now asking to play it (or playing it without asking) in need of a primer.
What is Roblox?
It’s not one game, but rather a set of quite 50m games, all created by its community of players. the only comparison is to YouTube: an enormous library of “user-generated content”, but in this case, the content is games instead of videos.
Children (and adults) download the Roblox application for computers, games consoles, smartphones, or tablets and use it to browse and play its catalog of games. Social features also are key to its appeal, including the power to feature friends and chat with them while playing.
Roblox isn’t a replacement thing: it officially launched in 2006 and has been growing steadily ever since.
Items and currency
Roblox allows players to shop for, sell, and make virtual items that may be wont to decorate their virtual character that is their avatar on the platform. Clothes are often bought by anyone, but only players with a premium membership can sell them. Only Roblox administrators can sell accessories, body parts, gear, and packages under the official Roblox user account; virtual hats and accessories also can be published by a few users with past experience working with the Roblox Corporation. There are several individuals who design items as a full-time job, with the highest-earning creators making over $100,000 a year off item sales. Items with an edition status can only be traded between or sold by users with premium membership status.
Roblox occasionally hosts real-life and virtual events. they need within the past hosted events like BloxCon, which was a convention for ordinary players on the platform. Roblox operates annual Easter egg hunts and infrequently engages in events to market films, like ones held for women 1984 and Aquaman. Roblox also hosts an annual event called the “Bloxy Awards”, an awards ceremony that also functions as a fundraiser. The 2020 edition of the Bloxy Awards, held virtually on the platform, drew 600,000 viewers.
Roblox Corporation annually hosts its Roblox Developers Conference, a three-day invite-only event in San Francisco where top content creators on the site learn of upcoming changes to the platform. Roblox Corp. has also hosted similar events in London and Amsterdam.
How many children play it?
Roblox doesn’t split its 100 million figure between children and adults, though it does say that 40% of them are women and girls.
In the UK alone, there are around 1.5 million children playing Roblox, consistent with research firm Kids Insights. Its data, supported by an annual survey of 20,000 British children, suggests that 24% of 10- to 12-year-olds here are on Roblox – quite on TikTok (13%) and Snapchat (20%) and nearly as popular as Instagram (25%).
The company adds that 19% of seven-to-nine-year-olds within the UK are playing Roblox, behind YouTube (43%) but before TV brands like CBBC (11%), Nickelodeon (10%), and Cartoon Network (8%).
How do people make games for it?
Anyone can make a game (or “experience” – they will simply be virtual spaces) for Roblox by downloading its separate Roblox Studio software. The corporation says that it’s quite 2 million “creators” – so around 2% of its players – with the foremost popular games being played by up to 100,000 people simultaneously.
For many children, creating an easy game or virtual room where they will hang around with friends is that the limit of their ambitions, but others build bigger, more complex games, and even start to form money by taking a cut of in-game purchases using Roblox’s virtual currency, Robux. the corporate expects to disburse quite $100m in 2019 alone to them.
“We have these teams forming businesses, and making many dollars a year,” says Donato. Roblox is keen to foster this community: in 2018 it launched its own curriculum, available under an ingenious Commons license, for educators to use. Donato says it reached quite 500,000 children in its first year.
Are people really making businesses out of this?
They are. Josh Wood is one of the British Roblox game-makers. He’s 18 now, but discovered Roblox in 2013, and began to form his own games for it a year later.
Wood has now found out his own company to form games for Roblox, hiring other developers, artists, and testers, and even launching a line of toys supported by Game Dev Life, in partnership with Roblox.
Another young British developer performing on Roblox games is Abbie Leigh. Now aged 19, she started playing Roblox in 2011, but took the leap into development in 2017, initially creating assets for other people’s games. She’s currently performing on three games, including her own sports-themed title, and hopes to form a full-time career out of freelance development.
Is Roblox safe for children?
When Roblox has made headlines within the mainstream media, they need often been negative: from reports of adults trying to groom children on the platform in 2017 to, most infamously, a virtual sexual abuse in June 2018, when a seven-year-old player’s avatar was attacked by two male avatars, whose players had hacked the game’s code to point out explicit imagery.
The following month, the Sun published an investigation claiming that Roblox was “a haven for roleplaying as jihadis, Nazi leaders and Ku Klux Klan members”. The corporate says that it’s been working hard to tackle wrongdoers and fix any loopholes in its platform.
Roblox has received generally positive reviews. sense Media gave it 4 out of 5 stars, praising the website’s sort of games and skill to encourage creativity in children while finding that the decentralized nature of the platform meant game quality varied, and recommended disabling chat functions for young players to stop possibly harmful interactions. Patricia E. Vance of the Family Online Safety Institute advised parents to watch their child’s interactions on the platform but praised the platform for “allow[ing] kids to play, explore, socialize, create and learn during a self-directed way”, and granted special praise to Roblox Studio for its ability to encourage children to experience game development. Trusted Reviews, in its overview of the platform, also praised Roblox Studio, stating that “for anyone seeking to develop their computing skills, or create projects which will instantly receive feedback from an enormous audience, the appeal is obvious”. Craig Hurda, writing in Android Guys, gave a more moderate review, praising the number of games available and finding that the sport was entertaining for youngsters, while also finding that the platform’s audio was “hit-or-miss” and declaring that it had limited appeal for adult players.
Due to its status as a games platform, Roblox features a sort of popular games. As of May 2020, the foremost popular games on Roblox have over 10 million monthly active players each. As of August 2020, a minimum of 20 games are played quite one billion times, and a minimum of 5,000 are played quite a million times. a number of the more notable games include:
During the 2017 Roblox Developers Conference, officials said that creators on the sports platform, of which there have been about 1.7 million as of 2017, collectively earned a minimum of $30 million in 2017. The iOS version of Roblox passed $1 billion of lifetime revenue in November 2019, $1.5 billion in June 2020, and $2 billion in October 2020, making it the iOS app with the second-highest revenue. Several individual games on Roblox have accumulated revenues of over $10 million, while developers as an entire on the platform are collectively projected to earn around $250 million over the course of 2020. Roblox Corp. itself is valued at $4 billion, with risk capital firm Andreessen Horowitz being noted as a considerable investment. On October 1, 2020, it had been reported that Roblox Corp. was preparing to become publicly listed at some point in early 2021.
Awards and recognition
Roblox has received the subsequent accolades:
- Inc. 5000 List of America’s Fastest-Growing Private Companies (2016, 2017)
- San Mateo County Economic Development Association (SAMCEDA) Award of Excellence (2017)
- San Francisco Business Times’ Tech & Innovation Award – Gaming/eSports (2017)
- Fast Company’s World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies – #1 in Gaming and #9 Overall (2020)