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What is Roblox? A Definitive Guide to Roblox Gaming
September 15, 2018
The world of gaming consists of both players and creators, and often those two roles are one in the same thanks to some innovative gaming platforms out there. Roblox is one example.
This massively multiplayer online (MMO) entertainment platform offers the ability to play games as well as create them using a digital tool called Roblox Studio and an easy-to-use, cross-platform programming and scripting language named Lua.
What is Roblox?
The largest user-generated online gaming platform, Roblox hosts social network games consisting of Lego-like virtual blocks.
Released in 2006 by the Roblox Corporation, Roblox now hosts over 70 million active monthly users who have created more than 15 million games. It’s a hugely popular gaming site for kids and teens, who flock to the platform daily to play games, create adventures, role play, and learn with their friends (regardless of where they are) in a family-friendly, immersive, and 3D environment.
Roblox is accessible on multiple devices, including PC, Mac, iOS, Android, Amazon, and Xbox One. Learn how to play Roblox on your PC.
Is Roblox free?
Roblox is free to download and you can also install games free, although there are optional, in-game purchases that users can make. Players can use actual money to buy “Robux,” which is Roblox virtual currency, to spend on in-game accessories or upgrades for their avatars.
Is Roblox educational?
Roblox is an immersive educational platform that enables creativity and imagination. Though most users start out as players, many eventually become builders who design their own games on Roblox - solving problems and creating complex structures.
It offers free educational tools and resources for teaching children of all ages coding, game design, digital citizenship, and entrepreneurial skills. Its roots are in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.
Is Roblox safe?
Because Roblox games are aimed at families and children, there are several measures in place to help keep children safe. Roblox is part of the Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI) and the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). All of this information is detailed in the Roblox Parent’s Guide.
Are there parental controls for Roblox?
Roblox lets you control who can interact with your child and how. For instance, you can choose who can message or chat with them. To adjust these controls, simply click on “Settings” and then “Privacy.”
Because kids register for Roblox using their birth date, it’s important that they enter the correct date. Roblox has default security and privacy settings that vary based on a player’s age.
In addition, all Roblox games have basic security and privacy measures; human moderators review user-uploaded images for inappropriate content before they’re posted, and there are filters that remove foul words and other problematic language.
Although players older than 13 can see more words and phrases than younger players, Roblox nonetheless restricts inappropriate chat messages and the sharing of personal information regardless of age. Parents of older teens may need less restrictions, but still want to have some measure of control.
A few of the best Roblox games
With an ever-growing cache of millions of games, there is no shortage of great (and free) games to play across genres. There are role-playing games (RPGs), adventure games, survival games, horror games, building games, and more.
Most of them have a similar look and feel with the blocky, Lego-aesthetic. In fact, you can create an avatar that will travel along with you from game to game - upgrading it as you go - gathering in-game gear, equipment, and accessories.
To start your avatar on the right virtual foot, here are just a few of the most popular of the many fun and exciting games available on Roblox.
1. Roblox: Jailbreak
Jailbreak is a prison-escape game that lets you play within an ever-expanding game world as either a criminal or police officer. Your goals and gameplay will depend on which role you choose at the start of the game.
To become a successful criminal, you’ll need to first break out of jail as a prisoner. And as a police officer, your goal is to capture prisoners trying to escape, arresting criminals once they’ve escaped, and thwarting robberies.
If you choose to play as a prisoner, you’ll immediately spawn somewhere in the prison depending on the prison schedule - either in the prison yard, cafeteria, or telephone room - without any starting weapons or gear. Except for your snazzy orange jumpsuit, of course, which you’ll be able to change out of when you escape.
Equipped with handcuffs, a pistol, and a taser, police officers spawn into the police station or, if it’s night, into the security office, which is located at the back of the prisoners’ cell hallway.
As a prisoner, you can escape in a few ways, including stealing a keycard from a police officer, getting under the barbed wire fence, or going through the sewer. Once you’re out, you can jump in a car and start (or resume) your criminal career by robbing places like a bank, jewelry store, train, museum, or donut shop.
When you start a robbery, however, the police will be notified and may chase and arrest you, placing you back in a cell. If you can't do the time, don't do the crime.
2. Roblox: Work at a Pizza Place
Work at a Pizza Place involves playing as different types of workers doing real-world jobs in a pizza place called "Builder Brothers Pizza."
When you join the game, you’ll automatically be given a house that you can customize, upgrade, and decorate. This is the place for which you can earn in-game money as one of the workers, and where pizza is delivered.
In the pizza place, there are six available jobs, which all rely on each other, including:
1. Manager: The manager is the head of the pizza place and has several responsibilities; you’re able to name an employee as an “Employee of the Day,” give out bonus checks, send employees back to work, and more.
2. Cashier: The cashier takes orders from customers, who enter through the front door of the store or the drive-thru. It’s a time-sensitive job: customers will leave if you don’t take their order quickly enough. And they’ll let you know what they think of your service (or lack thereof).
3. Cook: The cook works in the kitchen area and fulfills orders that are shown on the whiteboard, ensuring that the right ingredients are on the pizza, which must be properly prepared and baked.
4. Pizza boxer: Pizza boxers take pizzas from the kitchen, box them, and place them on the conveyor belt for delivery.
5. Delivery: Delivery drivers are responsible for hopping in a car and delivering the boxed pizzas and cans of Mountain Dew to the front door of the correct player’s house.
6. Supplier: Suppliers are responsible for transporting the pizza ingredients and supplies (including cubes of pizza dough, tomato sauce, cheese, pepperoni, sausages, Mountain Dew, and boxes) from the warehouse to the pizza place using trucks.
You’ll earn money through all six jobs according to how you work. The only exception is that while you are on break (fittingly, in “On Break” mode) you won’t earn any money. So you’ll need to think through how long you’ll need for that coffee (or bathroom) break.
3. Roblox: Natural Disaster Survival
Natural Disaster Survival is a survival game in which players must survive a disaster on a randomly chosen map. There are 11 disasters, including tornado, flash flood, thunderstorm, fire, tsunami, meteor shower, blizzard, acid rain, sandstorm, earthquake, and volcano. And there are 16 locations, some of which include a glass office, house, school, beach, market, and more.
Similar to Fortnite and other battle royale games, once you’ve teleported to the spawning area, in this case an island, you’ll have less than 30 seconds to prepare (and read the in-game advertising billboards).
You’re then transported randomly to one of the 16 map locations, after which one of the 11 disasters begins. You won’t have the ability to fight each other, but you will certainly be able to hide out. Hiding out helps you avert certain disasters, depending on where you are. For instance, head to higher ground if there is a tsunami, or be outdoors if an earthquake hits, or make sure that you’re inside for acid rain.
You may not be completely safe, however, as acid rain for instance can eat through buildings, so you’ll need to move away from toppling structures inside. Crouching behind a plant in an earthquake may actually save your life, but if the wall near you falls over, you’re a goner.
No worries, though; you’ll respawn on the starting island and get to watch the disaster unfold from a safe vantage point…until it’s once more unto the breach when the next round begins.
4. Roblox: Mad Paintball 2
The sequel to one of Roblox’s most popular games, Mad Paintball 2 is a team-based, first-person shooter (FPS) game developed by Mad Studio in which you play a game of paintball within one of two worlds: Tranquility and Turbine.
Tranquility has both indoor and outdoor gameplay, including a lake, waterfall, and village with many buildings, one of which is a large, blue, lab-like structure; and Turbine, which is set only within a facility and playable only in the “Capture the Flag” game mode.
Instead of characters, you can customize your avatar by choosing up to three accessories, one face, and one outfit. Select these from the inventory button. Outfits will change shirt, pants, and body colors. Accessories are hair, hats, scarves, equipment, and more that attach to your head, torso, or legs.
You’re able choose from among four weapons - rifle, shotgun, heavy (machine gun), and sniper. Additional weapon slots allow you to carry several classes of weapons at the same time. Though you’re firing paintball pellets, the red color splattered over the walls and floor (and characters) can appear pretty bloody. But the characters look unrealistic enough for younger players to play safely.
A handy list of abbreviations in Roblox
Here are just a few abbreviations and acronyms that you or your child may come across in Roblox:
1. Afk: Away from keyboard; which is the same as “be right back” (brb).
2. ODer: Online Dater; people who take part in dating in online video games. Note that online dating is against Roblox's rules of conduct.
3. XD: A synonym for LOL; an emoticon with the letter “X” denoting eyes (closed, presumably from laughing so hard), and “D” as the laughing mouth.
4. AA: Admin Abuse; abusing administrator commands or building in places where you are not allowed by an executive.
5. Noob: A new player; derived from the word “newb.” Other versions are spelled “n00b” or “nub.” Some may use this incorrectly for people who are annoying.
6. Tags: Filter system used to present the use of inappropriate words or questions.
About the Author: Jolene Dobbin is a contributing writer for HP® Tech Takes. Jolene is an East Coast-based writer with experience creating strategic messaging, marketing, and sales content for companies in the high-tech industry.