Are you interested in knowing how to build a gaming app like Roblox?
Roblox, an online gaming and game creation platform, has gained immense popularity since its release in 2006. Roblox corporation made $1.9 billion in revenue in 2021 with 43.2 million daily active users worldwide. 67% of Roblox users are under 16.
The global video game market was valued at $195.65 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12.9% from 2022 to 2030.
The advancement in technologies, the proliferation of smartphones, and the easy availability of the internet are some factors that contribute to the growth of the online gaming market.
Let’s see how you can build a gaming app like Roblox and take advantage of the profitable online games market.
Build a Gaming App like Roblox
You will go through the following steps to make a game app like Roblox:
Study the Roblox Gaming Platform
The evaluation of one of the most popular gaming platforms will help you understand the working model of the mobile gaming industry.
Roblox is a virtual world for gamers where they experience immersive reality in a variety of available games. Users can search through game categories of roleplay, adventure, simulator, etc.
The multi-player option allows gamers to play stimulating RPG games with friends and chat online.
Roblox offers a Roblox engine where users can create their own games and share them with the gaming community. Roblox is a free-to-play game platform with in-app purchases.
The in-app purchases require a digital currency called Robux. A portion of users’ purchases within the virtual games goes to the game creator. In this way, the Roblox platform and game creators both get rewarded if a game becomes popular.
Roblox video game is available on multiple platforms, including Microsoft Windows, Android, iOS, Xbox Series X and S, Mac OS, and Fire OS.
We will discuss Roblox game app features shortly.
Perform Market Research
You need to perform extensive gaming market research on your game idea to get insights into the current gaming trends and target audience demographics.
You need to analyze the top video games, the features they offer to gamers, their limitations, end-user requirements, etc.
Such market research will help you formulate a game development strategy that fulfills target market expectations and help you grow in the competitive mobile gaming apps market.
Decide Gaming App Features
We will list a few of the key features you need to build in your gaming app.
- Easy Sign-up feature for new users to register to your gaming platform. This feature should be simple and require only the necessary information.
- Game Hosting System with several games in multiple genres to keep gamers connected with your platform.
- Game Creation Engine with features that allow individuals to create their own games easily and share them with other users.
- Social Media Engine so that users can integrate their social media accounts with your game application and share their game creations, wins, etc., with their social media contacts.
- Chat System for gamers to have close interaction with each other via an online chat feature.
- In-App Purchase system for gamers to buy digital in-game assets like avatars, tools, etc.
- Custom Game Characters so users can play games in the desired roles, like a doctor, a fictional character, etc.
- Gaming Themes that add diversity to your gaming platform. Every theme should completely change the graphics and give a unique immersive experience to gamers.
These features will help you in creating game apps like Roblox that cultivate users’ interest and increase customer retention.
You will finalize the game app functionality and the overall project scope in the form of a systems requirements specifications document. The SRS document will help your mobile game app development team design and develop an app as per requirements.
Build a Gaming App Development Team
You need a competent app development team to build an appealing game app. Your development team will have the following roles:
- A project manager designs an app development plan, implements project management methodology, manages other team members, gives cost estimates, etc.
- A business analyst performs user market research and incorporates user requirements into your gaming software with the help of a project manager.
- A UI/UX design designs an appealing and intuitive game application.
- A game developer builds a gaming app for multiple operating systems.
- An app tester tests your game application for bugs.
Game app development involves agile methodologies. The game app market is volatile, and there are frequent changes to user requirements and the underlying development technologies.
An agile methodology, like scrum and kanban, helps developers to keep up with the frequent application modification requirements efficiently.
You can form a scrum team where your project manager will design multiple app development iterations and assign tasks to each scrum team member.
Each iteration, called sprint, delivers a workable app feature at the end. The scrum team conducts daily standup and weekly sprint meetings to ensure the successful completion of the app development project.
You can read our article How to Build a Scrum Development Team for more details.
Provide Infrastructure for Gaming App Development
Your gaming app developers require a low-latency development infrastructure to deliver game applications with high performance.
Cloud architecture offers such computation and storage capabilities, including scalable storage, rapid data discovery, development lifecycle agility, improve file sharing and network connectivity, etc.
Cloud service providers host and maintain development infrastructure, such as servers, database systems, game development engines, etc., on the cloud.
Cloud computing users subscribe to these cloud-based computation resources and quickly get started without installation and maintenance expenses.
Design Your Game Application
Now that your project team has the development resources, they will get started with the design and development of your game application.
Your designers will create visual content for your game, like characters, scenes, plots, layouts, etc. The game design includes the usage of aesthetics and user experience design techniques to create an intuitive and appealing gaming experience.
The four elements of game design are aesthetics, story, mechanics, and technology. Your game designers will use tools like GameMaker, Unity3D, etc., to design 2D and 3D game prototypes.
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Develop Your Gaming App
Your developers will work with your game designers to code the actual game according to visual prototypes created by the designers and make them a reality.
C++ is a low-level programming language. It is used to create game engines with features like game graphics, physics, audio, etc.
Java is commonly used to develop low-scale gaming applications for mobile OS, like android and iOS. It is a cross-platform programming language with features like socket programming, multi-threading, etc.
Your game developers will use game development engines to accelerate the creation and distribution of 2D and 3D gaming applications. Some of the game development platforms include:
GDevelop offers the following features to game developers:
- An open-source environment for game development for mobile devices (iOS/Android), PC, and web (HTML5);
- Physics engine to develop realistic behavior in your game;
- Sprites, platform engine, pathfinding, etc., to create 2D games.
This open-source real-time 3D engine is recommended by Amazon and maintained by the community of developers from AWS, Microsoft, Lightspeed Studio, Adobe, etc. The platform offers the following features:
- Extensible and visual creator for 3D games;
- Real-time physics engine;
- Character animation system;
- Artistic workflows;
- Easier team collaboration, etc.
The Unreal Engine platform is written in C++ and is highly popular among game developers. It offers
- Blueprint nodes to create high-end games without extensive coding;
- Animation blueprints;
- Runtime animation tools;
- Integrated media support;
- Developers tools like access to backend C++ code, C++ API, Profiling, and Performance, etc.;
- Robust multi-player support;
- Interactivity authoring using Artificial Intelligence;
- Support for virtual reality-based and augmented reality-based games for mobile devices, gaming consoles, and PCs.
Some other tools that your developers will find useful for gaming app creation include:
- Celtx offers flowcharts and scripts to write a compelling game story.
- Blender offers 3D animation and modeling tools.
- Incredibuild is a powerful solution to increase processing power. It significantly shortens long processes like build creation, shader compilation, texture processing, etc.
APIs increase developer productivity. They allow them to build a feature-rich application without each feature development from scratch. Ready-made API solutions help developers make games more engaging by integrating sound effects, an in-game chat option, etc.
Some game APIs that your developers can use include:
- WebRTC, by Google, for data exchange without any intermediary connection. Web apps and websites can utilize video and audio without any installation of plug-ins.
- Pointer Lock API helps with raw mouse movement. The API allows users to move their cursors beyond the boundaries of their screens and browsers.
- Gamepad API to interact with the browser using a gamepad.
- WebGL to render 2D and 3D objects to a browser in real-time.
- Cometchat to build an in-game chat feature. Developers can add video, chat, and text messaging options. Comechat is compatible with Angular, React, PHP, Java, etc.
Your developers can develop core game app features as APIs to configure with a range of hardware devices. Also called device APIs, these enable all components of game applications to run smoothly.
Your game app developers will use the latest technologies, like virtual reality and augmented reality, to create immersive and realistic gaming experiences for users.
Machine learning is used extensively in gaming environments. Some of these ML applications are:
- Non-player characters whose behavior is determined by AI algorithms;
- Pathfinding to generate the scenes as players advance in the gaming environment;
- Decision-making where game progress is highly influenced by the players’ actions;
- Data mining to better understand the gamer’s behaviors and how they play your game which helps with future game app enhancements, etc.
Intel offers a Game Dev AI toolkit to create gaming worlds and enhance them through artificial intelligence.
Test your Gaming App
Once your development team has designed and developed a gaming app with all the required features, your app testers will run test cases to ensure the fulfillment of all functional and non-functional requirements.
Your game test procedures will include feature testing, regression testing, security testing, compatibility testing, performance testing, compliance testing, localization testing, etc.
Deploy Your Game Application
Now that your gaming app is tested, you will get ready to deploy it in the gaming community.
Your developers will follow DevOps features like continuous integration/continuous deployment to deliver new game app features quickly and reliably. They will use tools like GitOps for game feature deployment.
This article explains continuous integration and delivery for unity-based mobile apps in detail.
Monitor and Maintain
After game app deployment, you will focus on the performance of your gaming app and end-users feedback.
Some KPIs to access your game application performance and user engagement are the number of app installations, uninstallations, registrations, sessions, user growth rate, retention rate, average screens per visit, lifetime value, etc.
You will also collect user feedback on your gaming app. There are multiple ways for feedback collection that depend on your time and budget. You can use beta versions, questionnaires, in-game feedback, reviews, etc., to enhance your app user experience.
Some tools for in-app feedback collection include Apptentive, ProProfs Survey Maker, Qualaroo, etc.
You will incorporate this user feedback into your next game development iterations to design and develop features as per end-user expectations.
You will also require your development team to draw up a maintenance plan for your gaming app. Your team will keep your application updated with new technologies, hardware upgrades, software versions, etc.
Ready to Build a Gaming App?
The development of an engaging and feature-rich gaming platform that leaves a mark on the gaming community requires expertise in advanced game development technologies.
We would advise you to partner with an experienced software development agency with component game designers and developers to build a gaming app successfully. DevTeamSpace is one such community of field-expert software developers with experience in market-competitive software solutions development.
All these developers are vetted for their development skills. Moreover, they follow an AI-powered development process and are managed by senior developers.
You can either outsource your complete gaming app development project to DevTeamSpace or hire a number of developers according to your requirements.
You can contact us by sending us your project specifications via this form, and one of our account managers will contact you at the earliest to discuss further details on how we can help you create a game app.
FAQs on How to Build a Gaming App
Once you complete market research on your game app idea, you will require skills to design game content, including characters, scenes, etc., code them using a game engine, test the gaming app for bugs and errors, and deploy a high-performance gaming app on a gaming platform, app store like Google Play Store, etc.
There are multiple game engines, like Unity, Unreal 3D, SketchUp, etc., to build gaming apps.
Yes, popular gaming apps make millions of dollars in revenue. Game developers can provide premium mobile game app features available for a fee, in-app purchases like avatars, tools, etc., paid advertisements, etc., to monetize mobile games app.