When It Comes to Paid Access, What Works and What Doesn’t?

August

06, 2013

by JacksSmirkingRevenge


Archive

ROBLOX Games June 2013We like releasing features that give builders and game developers the freedom and flexibility to experiment and find new paths to success. Our Paid Access feature, which essentially lets you charge Robux for players to access your game, is being leveraged by builders and staff alike. There has been a mixed reaction about whether Paid Access will benefit ROBLOX, though the numbers we pulled were quite revealing. We thought we’d take a look at some of the metrics behind Paid Access to see how builders and game developers are using it, and what strategies appear to be effective in the early stages.

First, Some Numbers

  • Combined, the Top Five highest grossing users have earned 1,222,621 Robux in Paid Access alone.
  • The Highest Grossing builder to utilize this service has generated 591,291 Robux from Paid Access.
  • 712 builders have generated over 100 Robux from Paid Access.
  • 120 builders have generated over 1,000 Robux from Paid Access.

Analysis

So far, enabling this service has surprised us in many ways. The top earning Paid Access games are radically different titles–don’t take my word for it either, have a look for yourself.

  1. ROBLOX Point Theme Park
  2. Slenderman: The Nightmare
  3. Miami, Florida Home
  4. Summer Eggstravaganza 2013
  5. Spongebob the Movie Obby
  6. Medieval Warfare: Reforged –Pre-Alpha
  7. Nuke the Whales: Benthic Warfare Edition
  8. Club Rich Version 3.0
  9. Grow a Slime!
  10. Go Camping With Friends

Here are some things we noticed:

A fair amount of people are using this service to beta test their game. This is great if you already have a core audience of players who are eagerly anticipating your next title–you can publish your game as a beta, and charge for access until release. That way, players can participate in early access versions of your game and you can collect feedback from people who are invested in the experience. For many, the feeling of exclusivity is worth the cost.

Often, when game developers make substantial changes to their popular place, they have to nuke every running instance of the game in order to publish the new version–if you’re the developer of a very popular game, this can be a real hassle. With Paid Access, game developers can create a copy of the place they want to work on, turn on the Paid Access feature, and users will know to just use the original copy of the game while the developer can build and implement changes privately in an entirely separate instance altogether.

250 Robux is the most popular price for Paid Access. This is the first asset that users will be able to sell that can potentially earn them a ton of Robux (as evidenced already, three weeks after it was switched on). We want to give you as many tools as possible to thrive in ROBLOX–and this is a substantial tool we’ve added to the toolbelt.

Top Paid Games get insane exposure. With our new liquid Games page, the default sort (which lists three categories of games by default, including Top Paid, Top Earning, and Relevant) gives you ample opportunity for exposure. A Top Paid game often populates two sorts at the same time–because it’s making money, the game will often appear in the Top Earning sort in addition to Top Paid. We’re talking twice the exposure–couple that with some ads and you can see some exponential growth.

Don’t take our word for it

We got in touch with starmarine614, creator of ROBLOX Point Theme Park (AKA the number one Paid Game on ROBLOX) to talk about his method.

ROBLOX: We don’t want to give away precise numbers, but–well, you’ve made a lot of Robux with this feature. What’s your secret?

starmarine614: This is the most Robux I’ve ever made in my life, hands down. [Laughs] I remember when I told Shedletsky I was making 100,000 Robux a day, he didn’t believe me.

ROBLOX: ROBLOX Point is a super cool place–we can’t wait for you to finish all the rides. It came seemingly out of nowhere, too.

ROBLOXPoint

starmarine614: I used to build rides on ROBLOX many years ago; I left for a year, and when I came back I saw all my old friends had started to create their own rides. I was inspired by their creations, and decided I wanted to work on a really big and ambitious project that focused on great detail. I put together an elite team to work with me and we got to building.

ROBLOX: It was free at first, right?

starmarine614: Yes, totally free. But it became really popular, and users up to no good kept going into the game and breaking the rides on purpose. So we decided to put a small price so people had to buy access to the game. Even after doing that, people still kept breaking things. We raised the price to 250 Robux to try and stop them.

ROBLOX: And people just kept buying access?

starmarine614: [Laughs] Yes! So I just started using the money I was making to run ads to really get my game out the door. 4,000 people bought the game before I made it free to play. I kind of had to because the Games Page keeps reverting.

ROBLOX: Yeah, we’re still ironing out some bugs. But Liquid Games is here to stay! Our Web Team is hard at work at refining and tweaking the page. You, along with a lot of users on our list were able to make a ton of money using Paid Access. What would be your advice to a user who wants to do something similar?

starmarine614: Well, two things. First, you’ve got to show people that this is something you worked really hard on. You can’t just take a bunch of free models, throw them in a place then tack on a price tag. If you show everyone that you’re working on a great place and you’re constantly updating it every day, they’ll pay for that. Make it look appetizing.

ROBLOX: And the other thing?

starmarine614: Ads! Ads are so important. I debuted the game, and I think it rose to the fifth row down on the Games page, which isn’t bad. I had like, 1,000 Robux in my old account, so I converted them to tickets and ran an ad. My game immediately jumped to the number one spot, and stayed there. Then the game purchasing just spiked through the roof, and I immediately used the money I made to keep running ads. More and more people kept showing up, mainly just to see what the fuss was about! I ended up spending over 100,000 Robux on running ads alone, and it was totally worth it.