What are people playing

Where are people playing?

Some surprising conclusions jump out when comparing time spent playing online, mobile, and facebook games. People spend one hour playing ROBLOX for every 20 hours kids around the world play with physical LEGO bricks. Twice as much time is spent on Xbox Live as is spent playing Zynga games. 

Some of the data was hard to find, and some figures are estimates. Destinations are compared by Total Players, Total Time, and Time per Player. See the end of this post for the data sources, along with which values had to be estimated.

Total Monthly Time

When sorting the destinations by Monthly Minutes (total time spent by all users every month), Facebook is king. Look below Facebook and you can see that Xbox Live users spend twice as much time playing as all Zynga users. Both World of Warcraft and Zynga users are spending roughly a billion hours per month online.

In the mobile space, Rovio claims people are playing Angry Birds 12 billion total minutes per month. ROBLOX users spend more time (20 million hours+) playing per month than people spend on popular destinations like Nickelodeon, LinkedIn, or Yahoo Games. Gizmodo published interesting stats on LEGO a few years ago, and it bears comparing the leading physical building toy with online play destinations. Almost twice as many people around the world use Facebook every month (see sections below) as Gizmodo claims have ever played with LEGO bricks (400 million).  The monthly play time for physical LEGO claimed by Gizmodo (400 million hours) is 20x the monthly play time on ROBLOX (20 million hours).

Engagement (Time spent per user)

Hard core games pop to the surface when sorting by time spent per user. Survey data claims World of Warcraft players spend 80 hours per month on the game, but this may have been at WOW’s peak. Xbox Live claims 35 million monthly players all spending 120 billion total minutes per month. That works out to 57 hours per month for every Xbox Live user. Are there really 35 million people around the world spending 2 hours per day on Xbox Live?  Microsoft claims there are.

There are 2 million monthly players on ROBLOX (as opposed to monthly uniques, which can include people who browse the site but don’t play). ROBLOX internal numbers show more monthly uniques than those reported by Comscore. When time per user on ROBLOX is computed using 2 million players and 1.3 billion monthly minutes, the result is 650 minutes per player per month. This is close to the Facebook time per user, and well above the other destinations in the survey.

Destinations where users are immersed in a social/gaming environment show the highest user engagement. Great brands from leading toy companies (Barbie, Hot Wheels, Transformers and Beyblade) do not ensure high online engagement. Wizard101 and Minecraft both have high monthly engagement, but I was unable to get data on their total usage time.

Monthly Unique Visitors

The traditional way to measure online properties is Monthly Unique Visitors. Sites that receive many online visitors with shallow engagement can be good at generating advertising revenue, because the first impression from a user is the most valuable. The number of monthly unique visitors provides a rough relative measure of how many people know about the destination. Several sites in the survey get many visitors who spend short amounts of time, thus rating highly in monthly uniques, even though not as high in total time.

Disney, Nickelodeon and Cartoon Network surpass ROBLOX in monthly unique visitors even though the total time spent by users on ROBLOX is greater (according to the data sources listed below).

Data Sources

The survey data is from multiple sources, and is correlated in some cases.  The Comscore data can be rough – for both Facebook and ROBLOX the Comscore numbers deviate significantly from reported values.

About David Baszucki

Founder, co-creator and CEO of ROBLOX. @DavidBaszucki on Twitter

114 thoughts on “Where are people playing?

    1. ponysitter

      You are SO right!!! It’s a great online game, I play every so often. Even so, it’s a great game. I like it just as it is! I don’t want anybody to change anything big. We could use a few tweaks here and there, and the ROBLOX admins should work on removing spammers and hackers.

  1. neongoo51/LastCommentWins

    ROBLOX is almost unknown in my country, so this was almost surprising/unexpected to me.

    1. TheQuestionsDude

      Just some player advice:
      i think you should have kept insert, alot of people used it, including copy, and some other older tools.

  2. yummydoglover

    GO ROBLOX! XD I <3 Roblox it's amazing though isnt it that social networking is THAT popular i would of thought that online virtual games like Roblox would be at the top of every one of those tables, wouldnt you?

  3. roblox username- bugupoppypu

    I think EA, ROBLOX, And real world Lego bricks are probably the things I play with the most (next to GameStop lol)

  4. Arlen

    Hi I discovered your site by mistake when i was searching Google for this concern, I must tell you your blog is absolutely valuable I also like the design, its great!

    1. David Baszucki

      Minecraft is on the last two charts. We were able to get data on the number of unique visitors to minecraft.net (from Comscore), but were unable to get the total hours per month.

      1. Anonymous

        I can see why, since minecraft doesn’t host their own servers, it must be hard for them to tell how long people are playing monthly, for as far as I know they have no code that tracks said stats and sends it to a server.

      2. Anonymous

        I think minecraft is going to start tracking people’s usage with minecraft they just did a pole to see if anyone would mind and everyone said the would not mind.

  5. Nick1000823

    meh, kinda sad to see Kong and Minecraft arent higher up.
    and who else laughed at the 18 minutes per month
    that Hasbro had?

  6. squidbones

    if you just make it possible to play
    ROBLOX games with; Wii, Xbox 360, and DS + PS3. Then ROBLOX would zoom up the chart, right to the top.

  7. Lushsnake

    I hope you guys at Roblox H.Q make Roblox for Wii,Xbox 360,Ps3,Ds,Ds3D,Dsxl,Tablets,Ipads,Ipods,Iphones.I know it’ll be alot of phone calls and hours of working,but it’ll be worth it.

  8. Bomchicka123

    I really had no idea Roblox was so popular… Well this shows that a few people are playing Roblox a lot. You should try to focus your advertising on a wider group of people, and an app wouldn’t hurt…

  9. quickspartan221

    This is awesome, I can’t wait till ROBLOX cards come to NZ! Hey ROBLOX is comin’ through… HEY BOOKFACE! WATCH OUT! WE ARE COMIN FOR YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  10. bobby 1

    If they make Roblox for ps3, Xbox 360, WII then you will have to buy it which is preety much pointless and you won’t get to do most of the contorls you do on the computer. One more thing if Xbox Live is up there then where is PSN. PS3 rules you know!

  11. wow25

    I didn’t know Zynga was so far up there! :O Like weaponmanic said though, simply make connections to the higher rated brands, that way increasing duplicity knowledge of roblox.

  12. Weaponmaniac

    If you can, make a ROBLOX Game for iPod Touch, Wii and XBox360

    If you make it for those electronics, ROBLOX will go REALLY high up

    1. Stevejan7

      Yeah weaponmaniac is right I have a wii I used to have an xbox360 but it broke but I would play roblox on wii all day!!!

      1. Anonymous

        Steve, that would be awesome, but it would take too long and will cost so much and the controls… Need I not say that for the wii?

    2. scienceboy0

      I am not sure they will be making it for Xbox. The Wii is in its last year so by the time they finish it, the Wii will be long gone. They are working on one for the Ipad though. Who knows? Maybe it would work on ipod Touch too?

    3. Anonymous

      Look, an Ipod isn’t going to be able to handle a game with tons of players, tons of bricks, and more. Xbox360 probably, but the wii will have the worst controls. The cost will be millions, and perhaps, BILLIONS of dollars. Sorry bro, but that won’t be happening any time soon.

  13. Oh Noes

    Facebook has the most players cause it is used around the world. and its free not like any other online games. Also Facebook is a Social Network u can chat with friends or even “VIDEO” chat it`s almost like skype. In philippines were i lived Every People U ask Kids , Parents , Old people have one . people here in my country u can see from streets to streets that theres intenet cafe who spends about 1-10 hours on facebook , games , online . thats proves that facebook is GOOD

  14. Shadowskills

    This is not entirely true. Twitter is going to out rank Facebook within the next year or two. It’s all about the tweets now!

  15. dylanmillicankid

    Just search Google so searched for this

    LEGO results: 64,500,000
    ROBLOX results: 67,100,000
    Facebook: 23,660,000,000

    just goes to show alot of people really like ROBLOX like me. although facebook came up with ALOT more results ROBLOX is actually doing very very well. GO ROBLOX :P

  16. Ross

    Best idea ever!

    Make an XBOX ROBLOX game [If you can make it on ipad, why not XBOX?] which will then share into the XBOX live community, making a larger pool of money for ROBLOX! So everyone is happy! :D

  17. VastSniper

    Part of the reason why so much time per month is spent on real-world LEGO bricks is, they need to be physically constructed. Takes a lot more than virtual building. (Ctrl + C … Ctrl + V)

  18. toon2

    I can wait until WoW is knocked down from its magicaally-corrupted standing. I like Xbox Live’s standing, but Roblox should be right under it.

    1. Anonymous

      Lol, WoW isn’t going anywhere, ESPECIALLY with the new expansion coming up. There’ll be a huge surge of players then, and people will be on constantly.

    1. David Baszucki

      Hi boo – I was able to find Minecraft stats from Comscore, but only for Monthly Unique Visitors (3rd and fourth charts). I agree their total hours must be high, along with their engagement (I mentioned this in the post).

      1. booboo223

        I agree. It’s a shame that you could not find the other Minecraft status.
        I hope ROBLOX expands more, and comes up with better updates.
        -booboo223

  19. miked

    Crikey; I didn’t realise how big you’ve gotten. Nice one…!

    Number of Roblox user accounts = 23million. Population of UK = 63million.

    Google search results:
    Lego: 63million
    Roblox: 4.7million

  20. Alex

    Hehe, why’d you forget Toontown Online, it’s their most popular game, by the way same thing as above.

    1. OrganicMuhy

      Hmmm.. I use LEGOs alot, but when I finish building they just sit there. I play ROBLOX 1 Hr + a day.

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