―Roblox's Official Slogan
Roblox (stylized and formerly referred to as ROBLOX, formerly stylized as RŌBLOX) is a massively multiplayer online and game creation system platform that allows users to design their own games and play a wide variety of different types of games created by other users. The platform hosts user-created games and virtual worlds covering a wide variety of genres, from traditional racing and role-playing games to simulations and obstacle courses which is the Metaverse. As of August 2020, Roblox had over 164 million monthly active users and over 2 billion users total. It was created by Canadian-born American David Baszucki (born January 20, 1963 ) and Erik S. Cassel † (December 16, 1967 - February 11, 2013 [aged 45]).
The beta version of Roblox was created by co-founders David Baszucki and Erik Cassel in 2003 under the name GoBlocks. Baszucki started testing the first demos that year. In late 2003, the game changed its name to DynaBlocks, then in January 2004, it changed to Roblox. The company launched in March 2004, and in Fall 2005 Roblox added PhysicalCharacters. The game officially launched on September 1, 2006. In March 2007, Roblox became compliant with COPPA, with the addition of safe chat, a change that limited the communication ability of users under the age of thirteen by restricting them to selecting predefined messages from a menu. In August, Roblox applied server improvements and released a premium membership service named "Builders Club". This paid membership feature was rebranded as Roblox Premium in September 2019.
In December 2011, Roblox held their first Hack Week, an annual event where Roblox developers work on outside-the-box ideas for new developments to present to the company. On December 11, 2012, an iOS version of Roblox was released, and on July 16, 2014, an Android version was released. On October 1, 2013, Roblox released its Developer Exchange program, allowing developers to exchange Robux earned from their games into real-world currencies.
On May 31, 2015, a feature called 'Smooth Terrain' was added, increasing the graphical fidelity of the terrain and changing the physics engine from a block-oriented style to a smoother and more realistic one. On November 20, Roblox was launched on Xbox One, with an initial selection of 15 games chosen by Roblox staff. New Roblox games for the Xbox One have to go through an approval process, and are subject to the Entertainment Software Ratings Board standards.
In April 2016, Roblox launched Roblox VR for Oculus Rift. At the time of release, more than ten million games were available in 3D. Around the same time period, the safe chat feature was removed and replaced by a system based on a whitelist with a set of acceptable words for users under 13 years old and a set of blacklisted words for other users. In June, the company launched a version compatible with Windows 10. While the game platform has had a presence on the PC since 2003, when its web version was created, this was the first time it was upgraded with a standalone launcher built for Windows.
Throughout 2017, Roblox engaged in a number of updates to its server technology, as the technology they were operating on until that point was out of date and led to frequent outages. In November 2018, the ability for a player to play as a "guest", without an account, which had been progressively restricted over the previous two years, was removed entirely. In July 2020, Roblox announced the creation of “Party Place”, which functions as an online hangout. The feature was created using new technology that had been used during the 2020 Bloxy Awards, and was designed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Roblox was granted permission to release in China on December 3, 2020. In 2021, Roblox bought chat platform Guilded.
- 1 million subscribers: February 23, 2018
- 2 million subscribers: March 20, 2020
- 3 million subscribers: April 16, 2021
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