Hack Week: Exploring a Crafting System in ROBLOX
by Navin Lal
During this year’s Hack Week, ROBLOX developers shifted gears, working tirelessly to devise and present ideas fueled more by creativity than priority. This week, we’ll be featuring some of the most innovative ideas to come out of Hack Week. Our first story is about a “Crafting” system in ROBLOX, by Software Engineer Navin Lal.
The idea of “Crafting” has been in the gaming world for a long time; DotA, Ultima, Everquest, and even Diablo have featured their own versions of the concept. It’s an undeniably interesting idea that is worth exploring in the world of ROBLOX. In order to better explain our unique take on a crafting system, let’s split the notion into two categories: materials and recipes. We’ll go over materials first.
The general idea is that, after years and years of playing ROBLOX, many users have acquired things, either from the Catalog or the game itself, they simply don’t need. We’ve all got some hats from four years ago that we’d never wear today. So we started thinking, how could we make use of these useless items that are gathering virtual dust in our inventories?
The crafting system would give users the ability to recycle items and harvest their core materials. Then, users would be able to mix and match all of these materials in order to create custom items that can only be shaped by alchemy. That way, no item in your inventory can be considered useless, as it may be a key component in developing a customized creation when mixed with other items, and can also be seen as a valuable item for bartering, as someone may need that component to make something much more complex.
That leads to the second half of the equation: recipes. Recipes would exist to create both existing items, and brand new ones—this would present a new way to leverage the trading system, as you would want to trade items with other users in order to get the core materials you need to build your creative concoction.
We wouldn’t want to limit you to the specific confines of written recipes either; if you have a bunch of random items you don’t feel you need, throw them all together and see what happens! You could end up randomly discovering a new item, or making an existing item that could be useful to you in the future.
Let’s hypothesize, to get an idea of how this system could work. Say you wanted a DarkAge Ninja Swordpack, but didn’t have enough Robux to buy it, but you did have the recipe for it.
The recipe is as follows: 3x Polished Steel and 1x Shard of Darkheart, a rare material used to craft items in the Fighting genre. So you decide to recycle your existing sword pack and come away with 2x Polished steel from it. You’re almost there!
Now you have a couple of options to obtain the rest of your ingredients. Find something of value to a friend, and trade him/her for the additional Polished steel ingredient you need, then pop over to the catalog and purchase the Shard of Darkheart. So, with a few recycled materials, trades, and a single purchase, you’ve got your shiny new DarkAge Ninja Swordpack.
This is just a quick and simple example of how this system could potentially work. We’re always thinking of ways to further enrich and enhance the ROBLOX experience, and that usually involves giving our users more creative freedom. Crafting would lead to the creation of new and unique items, while simultaneously enhancing our recently released trade system so that users could trade and barter for items to recycle and harvest. Nothing’s set in stone, but it’s an interesting avenue that we’re excited to pursue. We’re totally open to feedback, so if you’ve got any ideas, sound off in the comments below!