API to Determine Server CrossPlay State

As a Roblox developer, it is currently too hard to make a game where server specific data is saved to a specific place when Console access is enabled due to the inability to ensure a one-to-one relationship between a “custom server” and a Roblox server when CrossPlay is disabled. This limitation leads to scenarios where multiple Roblox servers are unintentionally created for the same custom server, causing data overlap and inconsistency.

As it is today, if we made a custom server list with predefined server names, say Red Server and Blue Server and in a game, we allow players to build bases in either Red Server or Blue Server. We need to guarantee that we only have, at most, one Roblox Server per Custom Server. This is not currently possible due to how “CrossPlay Disabled” cannot play with players from other platforms.

Scenario 1:

  • Red Server has 0 players in it, Player 1 joins via PC. Server list asks Roblox to start a new Roblox server - Roblox Server 1.
  • Roblox Server 1 is now mapped to Red Server.
  • Player 2 attempts to join Red Server via Xbox, with CrossPlay Disabled.
  • Server list asks Roblox to teleport player into Roblox Server 1.
  • Roblox starts a new server Roblox Server 2 since Player 2 cannot play with Player 1.
  • Roblox Server 2 is now mapped to Red Server.

In this scenario, we have two Roblox servers mapped to our custom server. Why is this a problem? Both servers are saving data to the Red Server Id, thus overwriting each other.

  • Inability to maintain server-specific data integrity.
  • Forced segregation of players based on their gaming platform.
  • Complexity in providing a unified gaming experience across platforms.

Scenario 2:

  • Blue Server has 0 players in it, Player 3 joins via Xbox with CrossPlay Disabled. Server list asks Roblox to start a new Roblox server - Roblox Server 3.
  • Roblox Server 3 is now mapped to Blue Server.
  • Player 4 attempts to join Blue Server via PlayStation, with CrossPlay Disabled.
  • Server list asks Roblox to teleport player into Roblox Server 3.
  • Roblox starts a new server Roblox Server 4 since Player 4 cannot play with Player 3.
  • Roblox Server 4 is now mapped to Blue Server.
  • Player 5 attempts to join Blue Server via PC.
  • Server list asks Roblox to teleport player into Roblox Server 3.
  • Roblox starts a new server Roblox Server 5 since Player 5 cannot play with Player 3.
  • Player 6 attempts to join Blue Server via PlayStation.
  • Server list asks Roblox to teleport player into Roblox Server 3.
  • Roblox starts a new server Roblox Server 6 since Player 6 cannot play with Player 3.
  • Use can repeat infinitely. Only players who get the same server must be on the same platform as Player 3.

In this scenario, we have a problem where only Xbox players can play with each other, and we have at least 4 servers all mapped back to Blue Server, all overwriting each other.

There are plenty more obvious issues with this system. As it is today, since we now have Xbox and PlayStation the problem is significantly worse since we can’t just send our Console players into their own game anymore, CrossPlay disabled Xbox players cannot join PlayStation players, etc.

There are numerous past requests for something like this as well:

Currently the lack of API to determine that a server was started by a player with CrossPlay disabled is pushing many developers away from allowing Console access.

If this issue is addressed, it would improve my development experience because it solves a very complex problem for developers, that I don’t believe can be solved today.

Addressing this issue could significantly enhance the development process by enabling developers to direct players with CrossPlay disabled to appropriate servers. This would not only simplify data management but also improve the gaming experience for console players by providing them with tailored server options. Implementing a feature to identify servers with CrossPlay disabled could resolve these challenges with minimal effort from Roblox’s side, benefiting both developers and players alike.

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An alternative point to the same issue above, adding an ability for us to check if a user is a cross-play disabled user would allow us to better handle what to do with them when they try to join our games. As it is right now we cannot create a static server-list for our games that also are open to console players to join. The question by Roblox might be asked then about why this is necessary when Roblox’s mission is to create a unified gaming experience for everyone. I think this is an exception, because it limits a very critical design choice for our game and prevents us from creating the type of experience we want to make on the platform.

With an API to see who has disabled crossplay, we can better serve a user a server-list with only options he is able to join, which then improves not only his experience playing our game, but all players.

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