Configurations: scripting for the rest of us


16, 2009

by John Shedletsky


Scripts are what make Roblox run, just like the complex interlocking gears behind an analog clock.  But they also have what could be charitably called a steep learning curve, and are something that even many experienced builders never master.

This is troubling to us Admins here at Roblox HQ.  We really want Roblox to be something that all players can use to build awesome things, and we see the current state of scripts as a major hurdle to the beginning user. 

So we’ve created a new tool that will be loaded in Group/Solo Building levels to make it easier to tweak objects.  If the objects support this new tool, you’ll be able to click on them in the world to get a nice GUI to tweak their settings.configuration

So how does this all work?  Well, its not magic (unfortunately).  We don’t have a way to scan scripts and automatically extract out the important values that could be edited.  Instead, we rely on a few changes from the model author.

First of all, we’ve created a new object called a Configuration.  A Configuration object is a container that holds all of the Value objects you know and love (BrickColorValue, NumberValue, IntValue, ObjectValue, etc).  But its really just a container that you can put under any Part to make your models tweakable.

TREE VIEWThen you just change your Script to use the Value objects stored in the Configuration as input parameters, and you’re done.

scriptNow initially there won’t be any models out there that use this,, but more will come with time (we hope). 

Actually there is one tool out there already that can be configured, the Tweakable Ray Gun.  Working off of an existing ray gun script, this took me only about 5 minutes to get working in a configurable form, so hopefully more people will take up the challenge.

You can also use this ray gun in Group Building places.  We’ll be working to get more models/scripts into group building places in the coming weeks.  And if you want to talk about this blog post, you can visit this forum thread.