Roblox has unveiled a novel conversational AI assistant during the 2023 Roblox Developers Conference (RDC) that aims to facilitate the creation of experiences within the popular social app. The newly introduced tool, known as the Roblox Assistant, builds upon previously announced features enabling creators to craft virtual assets and code with the assistance of generative AI.
With the Roblox Assistant, creators will have the capability to input prompts to perform actions like generating virtual environments. For instance, in a demonstration, someone inputs “I want to make a game set in ancient ruins,” and Roblox promptly inserts elements such as stones, moss-covered columns, and dilapidated architecture. Further instructions like “Make the player spawn by a campfire in the ruins” result in the addition of a campfire and a stool, while “Add some trees for the player to chop down” incorporates nearby trees. Notably, Roblox sources assets from either its marketplace or the user’s visual asset library, as explained by Roblox spokesperson Roman Skuratovskiy.
This development showcases an innovative application of generative AI, even though there is a typical skepticism associated with such technology. In an interview , Roblox CTO Daniel Sturman discussed how the tool might eventually enable the creation of fundamental gameplay behaviors, such as teleporting the player when they touch a door. Additionally, the Roblox Assistant can provide coding assistance and answer questions related to Roblox development, offering valuable tools for platform creators.
Regrettably, creators won’t be able to access the Roblox Assistant immediately, as Sturman mentioned that the tool is slated for launch at the end of the current year or early next year.
Looking ahead, Roblox envisions more extensive applications for the Roblox Assistant, with Sturman suggesting its potential to generate intricate gameplay and even construct 3D models from scratch. If successful, this could align with CEO David Baszucki’s vision of achieving a level of design ease reminiscent of Westworld.
However, there is concern that these generative AI tools might diminish the role of Roblox’s developer and creator community. Sturman addressed this by stating, “I strongly believe that generative AI is going to reduce our creators’ dependence on specific technical skills and enable the big differentiation between creators to be the spark of genius they have in what an experience should be and how it should operate.” Nevertheless, it remains to be seen if this will be the case, as AI sometimes produces results that are slightly off, indicating a continued need for experienced Roblox developers and creators to craft their work.
During RDC, Roblox also discussed other AI-based updates, including a tool that allows users to create avatars from images and text prompts, making it easier to design avatars resembling themselves. Additionally, Roblox plans to integrate generative AI for creating content within other Roblox experiences.
Furthermore, the company is working on an AI-based tool for real-time moderation of voice conversations to combat toxicity on the platform. Testing for this feature began in August, with plans to deploy it in English shortly, followed by support for four more languages (Spanish, Italian, German, Portuguese) by the end of the year.
Roblox believes it is well-equipped to leverage AI to assist its user base, emphasizing its commitment to enabling creators. The utility of its AI tools appears promising, potentially lowering the barrier for individuals interested in game development, even without prior knowledge.