ROBLOX Plugins: Power to Scripters

August

12, 2011

by John Shedletsky


Archive

Last night, ROBLOX released an exciting new feature for scripters… My friends, we offer you nothing less than total control of your ROBLOX building experience!

It’s my pleasure to introduce the ROBLOX plugin architecture: it allows scripters, in Lua, to write their own building tools. These tools will appear in a series of toolbars in ROBLOX Studio, like this:

image

The best community-developed tools may be rolled back into future versions of ROBLOX Studio, and they can be shared between players.

How to Install a Plugin

Currently, one plugin ships standard with ROBLOX, the Time Of Day plugin produced by ROBLOX super-intern Cyrion. Here are two other plugins for you to experiment with:

Demo Plugin – This is one of the simplest plugins possible. Take a look at the source to see how to make your own.

Tree Generator – I repurposed the procedural tree generator from one of Anaminus’s places and made his code into a plugin in less than 5 minutes.

To install these plugins, follow these steps:

  1. Download the files
  2. Unzip them
  3. Open ROBLOX Studio
  4. Tools –> Open Plugin Folder
  5. Copy the treegen and demo folders into this folder
  6. These tools will be loaded next time you open a place in Studio

If you ever want to remove a plugin, just delete the plugin’s folder. In the future, we would like to make installing plugins easier. For now it’s a power-user feature.

How to Make a Plugin

Flurite and Trappingnoobs have written an article in the wiki outlining what you need to know to produce your own plugins. We will be updating this article as we continue to improve our plugin architecture.

What Can I Do With This

Most of the official ROBLOX tools are also built in Lua, so really, you can do anything you want! The basic idea is you can make a tool to do anything that’s hard to do in ROBLOX Studio right now. I thought about it for 30 seconds and I already have more ideas than will fit:

  • CFraming tools for putting parts inside each other
  • More tree-generation tools with more parameters
  • Weather tool
  • Character designer – dressing NPCs in ROBLOX Studio is very hard right now
  • NPC dialog creator – a nice interface for creating dialogs
  • Team configurator – create teams, and create rules for them (red gets weapons X, Y, Z & blue gets only Z)
  • Regenerator – click on a model to make it regen every X seconds.
  • Teleport creator – type in a destination and click.
  • Moving platform designer – draw a path for a floating platform to follow
  • AI platform for Bots – create bots and tell them what to do
  • NavMesh generator – draw paths and nodes in levels to create a NavMesh that AI bots can use A* to navigate.
  • Random treasure placer – click on a spot to create 5-25 coins and 1-3 gems there.
  • Head explosion from ideas!

I Made and Awesome Plugin!

Great! Share it with us on the Scripters forum – we’re very interested to see what kinds of tools you build for ROBLOX Studio!

– Telamon