Custom Skyboxes 101

Introduction

The following video and article are a collection of helpful tips, tools and resources for creating, editing, and processing “skybox” images for use in Roblox Studio. A quick disclaimer: this mini-tutorial mentions a few helpful third-party/non-Roblox links.

What is a skybox?

A skybox is the far-distant surrounding environment in a Roblox experience. It is generated from a set of six images that seamlessly stitch together to create the illusion of a 360º panoramic environment.

Roblox Studio templates include a default skybox — but it is possible for developers to upload unique image IDs for the Sky object, to customize environments.

Default Sky in Roblox Studio

In this mini-guide you’ll learn tips and tricks for creating, editing and publishing custom Skybox images in Roblox Studio.

  1. Creating skybox images - Use tools to generate your own Skybox images, or libraries to download existing ones.
  2. Editing and previewing - Preview, edit and convert your images to a format that Roblox Studio can use
  3. Uploading and implementing - Upload your skybox images to Studio and and update the Sky object.

Creating

If creating your own skybox images, keep in mind the following tips:

  • Choose complete 2:1 equirectangular images that show a full seamless 360º environment — otherwise seams or other visual glitches will appear in your environment.
  • Avoid skybox images with objects that are too close to the camera — they will feel unnatural work against a sense of depth and dimension when placed in the virtual environment. Instead choose images showing the far-distant horizon that better match the scale of your scene.

Libraries and Resources

The following are great resources for getting skybox image assets:

Editing and Previewing

Use a preview tool like Insta360 Player (Action Camera|360° Camera - App, Firmware Download) to quickly preview 360º panoramic images.

To convert 2:1 equirectangular skybox images to 1:1 cube map faces check out the Panorama to Cubemap tool by Jaxry.

Additional processing is required for use in Roblox Studio, rotate the Down image 90º CCW, and the Up image 90º CW — then rename each cube face image as below:

pz SkyboxBk
ny SkyboxDn (rotate 90º CCW)
nz SkyboxFt
nx SkyboxLf
px SkyboxRt
py SkyboxUp (rotate 90º CW)

Upload to Roblox Studio

Once the equirectangular skybox image has been processed into individual cube faces, you can upload them to Roblox Studio in bulk with the Asset Manager.

  1. Go to the View tab and select the Asset Manager (note: to upload assets, the Roblox Studio project needs to be published)
  2. Upload your new skybox images
  3. Once uploaded, right-click on an image, and choose “Copy Asset ID”
  4. Open the Lighting folder in the Explore panel, and select the Sky object
  5. In the appearance section, find the corresponding Skybox face and paste in the new asset ID.
  6. Repeat for all 6 faces of the sky object.
  7. Once all the assets IDs have been updated, you should now see the custom skybox in your scene.

Summary

In this quick tip tutorial we covered:

  • What a skybox is
  • How a custom skybox can help enhance the quality of a Roblox environment
  • Resources to find and create skybox images
  • Tools and techniques for converting equirectangular skybox image into the cube map format required for Roblox Studio
  • How to upload custom skybox cube image, and update the Sky object in Roblox Studio

I hope this quick tutorial will help you customize your Roblox environments — have fun bringing your ideas to life on Roblox!

Do you have any related tips and tricks for creating custom Skyboxes? Chime in and share your skills and experience with the community!

36 Likes

This is an incredible tutorial for begginers!

A tip for indoor games is that you can make the skybox black to have no light entering/leaking in.

3 Likes

Hi nice tutorial.

What application did you use to create your image for the example skybox?

Thanks
image

5 Likes

Nice tutorial.
I know this might have to be in another category but please add a way to enable a posterization effect into roblox studio

2 Likes

Very nice, most people don’t bother too much with skyboxes these days, it’s nice to see this come around.

2 Likes

Hey, the following tool was used and it’s linked in the post here:

Thanks!

2 Likes

I improved the source code of Jaxry’s converter to create a converter specifically for Roblox. It eliminates the need to rename files or rotate images by 90 degrees for Roblox. You can switch to the English version using the button in the top right corner.

9 Likes

Wow, this is amazing, thanks for sharing!

2 Likes