Weekly ROBLOX Roundup: February 10, 2013
by Andrew Haak
Every 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: the release of ROBLOX Studio 2013 (and subsequent bug fixes), a new, voxel-based prototype for dynamic lighting, the democratization of game development (with litozinnamon), the ROBLOX modeling scene, an RGC 2013 location announcement, Checkpoint Racing by Wingman8, and other bits and pieces. Enjoy.
Seven-day Blog Recap
Last week, we announced the arrival of ROBLOX Studio 2013, the much more stable and platform-independent version of our building tool. We’ve been soliciting and reading through your feedback, and we recognize we haven’t yet perfected the Studio 2013 experience; thus, we’ve been fixing bugs as quickly as possible and even made an old version of Studio available for download for a limited time.
A new prototype for dynamic lighting and shadows
One of the most hotly anticipated ROBLOX features — and it’s been anticipated for a while — is dynamic lighting. We’re finally getting closer to making it a reality, as our rendering gurus have engineered a voxel-based dynamic lighting system that does not significantly impact performance. You can see four different video demos, with commentary from our own Arseny and Simon, in the blog post announcing this dynamic lighting solution. Need I say more?
No, but I will anyway! It looks amazing.
10 years ago, it would be almost unimaginable for a teenager to sit down at a computer and, within weeks, have launched a 3D, multiplayer game that attracts hundreds of simultaneous players around the world. Today, it is possible, and it’s known as the democratization of game development. We talked with ROBLOX user litozinnamon, creator of the highly popular Call of ROBLOXia 5: ROBLOX at War, about his experience building a popular game and how ROBLOX enables people of all ages to reach a massive audience. If you’re an aspiring game designer, it’s particularly worth the read.
The ROBLOX modeling (the 3D kind, of course) scene
One part of ROBLOX that doesn’t get a ton of credit is 3D modeling. While models sometimes get a bad rap — some see excessive use of them as lazy — they offer the benefits of expediting game and world creation, and helping spread ingenious scripting and building methods through the community. We took a bird’s-eye view of ROBLOX’s 3D modeling scene in this blog post, and found some interesting stuff.
ROBLOX Game Conference 2013
You should play this ROBLOX game
Of all the driving and racing games I’ve played on ROBLOX, Checkpoint Racing, built by Wingman8 (also the creator of hit games Galleons and Armored Patrol, among others), is the best. Rather than put players in cars on an inescapable track, Wingman8 spawns large, open worlds, and scatters yellow checkpoints (sometimes ordered, sometimes not) throughout the region. This means even with the slowest, clunkiest car, you can still be the winner — by surveying the checkpoints and sticking to the most efficient path. There’s no single, defined route, and the game occasionally refreshes the race terrain to a new map, keeping it fresh for hours.
Last week, we posted this screenshot to our Facebook page with a blank word bubble, and let our fans go at it. We received tons of ideas — literally, more than 2,000 — but saw a certain song as a recurring theme. This is a pretty funny play on that theme.
If you want to get in on the fun in the future, be sure to “Like” the official ROBLOX Facebook page.
- ROBLOX user TheAmazeman, probably best known for his work creating ROBLOX Titanic, has recently been posting updates to his blog (which we noticed had been inactive for several months in our recent roundup of ROBLOX fan sites). The articles are in-depth and totally worth reading.
- Gabe Newell’s (Valve) PC-centric vision of video games’ future
- GeekDad (Wired) writer Tony Sims recently published an interview he conducted with ROBLOX — it covers everything from “what is ROBLOX?” to what we have in store for the future.
- Check out this video showing ROBLOX’s upcoming physics performance increases (note: the fragmentation script seen in the level was written by a ROBLOX user; the video is using it to demonstrate the fact that there are a lot of moving parts without slowdown)!