Weekly ROBLOX Roundup: November 4, 2012

November

04, 2012

by Andrew Haak


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Weekly ROBLOX Roundup logoEvery week, we’re busy telling the stories behind our platform, our technology, and our place in the gaming and technology industries. For those of you who catch up with ROBLOX over the weekend, the Weekly ROBLOX Roundup collects the best stuff to hit our various avenues of publication in the last week. This time: Halloween at ROBLOX HQ, games that keep players coming back (and the techniques they use), an update on ROBLOX for iPad development, and everything you need to know about Raycasting — including how Paintball! creator daxter33 uses it.

Balcony Group ShotHalloween at ROBLOX: costumes and games

While ROBLOX users dressed their characters with the Halloween-themed attire and gear released throughout October, ROBLOX developers got into the spirit, too, and we have photos to prove it. On top of that, we reported four useful tips from members of the Content Team as to how to “Halloween-ify” your ROBLOX games. Sure, Halloween has come and gone, but many of the techniques described, such as zombies and atmospheric lighting, are good all year long. Check out the blog post for the gritty details.

Out of curiosity, what was your favorite Halloween gear this year?

Sticky ROBLOX games

We’re not talking about Beekeeper Tycoon (although you’re welcome to run with that concept), we’re talking about games that keep players coming back again and again. Games that just won’t let you get away. We queried the ROBLOX database to find the stickiest ROBLOX games over the last six months, and analyzed the techniques they use to encourage repeated plays. While none of the techniques will guarantee overnight success — your game needs to be fun and well-made in the first place — it will get you thinking long-term about your game and its features.

FootprintReducing the memory footprint of ROBLOX

It goes without saying that, before we can release ROBLOX for the iPad, it needs to be able to run smoothly. Over the past several weeks, the ROBLOX Client Team has been digging deep into ROBLOX’s source code to find and optimize memory-hogging tasks and files. In this Engineering ROBLOX for the iPad article, we look at some of the ways we’re reducing the memory footprint of our platform.

Paintball!Raycasting, with input from a celebrity expert

Raycasting is a scripting technique many ROBLOX users employ to create accurate, responsive weapons. Daxter33, creator of the ultra-popular ROBLOX game Paintball!, has a unique implementation of raycasting, which he explains in this in-depth article. Of course, raycasting isn’t only useful for weapons, so we also explain some other useful applications.

You should see this ROBLOX place

Zombiesdale is the latest project from ROBLOX user um3k (in conjunction with BLOX31), who we highlighted on the blog once before for his procedural city-generation plugin. I happened to run into him on a Zombiesdale server late last week, and he told me about some of the unique technology powering this sprawling, zombie-infested city. There’s no real “game,” but it has a well defined sense of place and atmosphere. Here are some of its unique features:

  • Terrain destruction (using a blend of math and raycasting for efficiency)
  • Algorithm that dynamically changes the color of the fog based on day/night
  • Procedurally generated parks; buildings by BLOX31
Sunrise over Zombiesdale

You can see the fog change color as night turns to day

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