Weekly ROBLOX Roundup: June 9th, 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: a STEM field trip to Behind the BLOX, a showcase of incredible ROBLOX builds, a simple GUI for creating an in-game store, scaling our thumbnail database, the winners of the BLOXcon Poster Contest, a plethora of new shades, Ready, Steady, Build!, and other bits and pieces. Enjoy.
Seven-day Blog Recap
Local STEM group field trips to Behind the BLOX
Many educators recognize the educational value of ROBLOX. It’s a vehicle for learning to manipulate digital objects in 3D, develop a programming foundation and learn some economics basics within the context of pure fun. We recently had a group of students from a local middle school’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education Coalition) program stop in our office for a weekly Behind the BLOX session, where they had the opportunity to provide feedback and play test a project that’s currently in development. You can read about their visit and get some insight as to why this STEM group uses ROBLOX as a hybrid of fun and learning.
Six places that’ll make you say, “whoa”
Part of being part of the communications team is seeking out and surfacing the best content on ROBLOX. We occasionally publish articles that exist for that express purpose. In our latest edition, we showcase places with dynamic lighting, incredible levels of intricate detail, massive scale and, in some cases, all of the above. We recommend you take a look at our photos. Then visit each place and see the grandeur for yourself.
- Six Must-See ROBLOX Places
- Six Awesome ROBLOX Places You’ve Never Seen Before
- Six Awesome ROBLOX Places You’ve Never Seen Before, Part 2
Weekend fun with in-game purchasing
A little over a month ago, we launched an API that lets creators sell Game Passes and gear from within their games and places. While we’ve noticed some cool implementations of this feature, we were left wanting to make it easier to leverage. So, this week, our Content Team developed a resource for that exact purpose: a GUI that lets you easily create a store for your place. If you’re interested in effectively earning a profit, it’s worth your while to read our brief tutorial and leverage this feature today.
Scaling thumbnail dependencies with a growing user base
There is a huge quantity of thumbnails being generated on ROBLOX.com and recorded in a database every day. In fact, every one of these thumbnails not only has a unique ID, but multiple associations with with any and all other assets that appear in that thumbnail. (For example, your character thumbnail has associations with the hat and shirt it’s wearing.) Our nimble operations team recently did some “future proofing” on the way we store and access these database records, which number in the billions, to make sure we continue to scale with the growth of our community. It’s technical. It’s available as some fine weekend reading right here.
BLOXcon Poster Contest winners have been announced!
On Friday, we announced the winners of our BLOXcon Poster Contest, which gave the entire community an opportunity to create a poster for any of our three upcoming BLOXcon events. With the help of your vote, we narrowed the selection down to three top posters for each city. See who took home the grand prize!
Every month, we release new virtual items you can only acquire by redeeming ROBLOX cards from particular stores. This month, we dove into the spirit of summer and debuted an entire set of shades. Find out what shades you can get and how you can get them by checking out this post.
You should see this ROBLOX place
Ready, Steady, Build! by peaspod is a great idea. It’s a social building game, where six players are provided an object (e.g., house, tree, etc.), tasked with building it privately in five minutes, then cast up to three votes for the best execution. (And no, you can’t vote for yourself.) It’s not the flashiest looking place, but it’s fun and a smart use of ROBLOX’s building tools and multiplayer gaming platform. Some player-builders are quite good, too; I was bested by most of my opponents, making me think I had better brush up on my building skills in the near future…
ROBLOX, elsewhere on the web
- ROBLOX was featured in Common Sense Media’s Digital Fun for Creative Kids guide. Find us in the “Coding” category (ages 7-12)!
- Gamesauce published an informative article, featuring interview commentary from our CEO, David Baszucki, about how ROBLOX has grown from mere idea to a virtual community with millions of builders.
- Our weekly Behind the BLOX sessions made it into the local news, thanks to a parenting-themed article about technology and video games in the San Jose Mercury News.
- Last week, I mentioned Nexx’s new ROBLOX game development competition, BLOXdev. The site’s countdown clock is ticking toward the official beginning of the event, in which ROBLOX developers have a week to create a game based around a theme. Currently, BLOXdev is accepting suggestions for the theme. If you’re a game developer looking to make a name for yourself, check it out!
- In celebration of World Oceans Day, our gear release for this week was ocean-themed. Check them out: Land Shark Shooter, Seahorse, Harpoon Gun, Squid Ink Bomb. Side note: seahorses FTW (especially when they drive like tanks).
- ROBLOX + cake = YES.
- Our latest video review covers Strobe, the flashy shooter by redditor and Team Rudimentality. Watch the video below and check out our previous feature about the game for more information.