Experience Join Improvements: Server Size, Join Queues and Social Slots Reservations

[Update] May 11, 2023


[Update] April 26, 2023


Hello Creators,

We are constantly exploring ways to bring people together on our platform and we are happy to share a few recent updates we have rolled out and one change we are making.

Increased Maximum Server Size to 200

We have allowed up to 700 player servers in beta for a while, and we intend to keep pushing the limit on server size on Roblox. From the beta, we learned that some devs have built larger experiences so we are making a change that will allow everyone to create experiences with 200-player servers. We are excited to see what the community builds with larger player servers. There may be some performance issues with such larger server sizes. If you notice any impacts, please send us your feedback on how we can improve performance and stability for those experiences.

Join Queue Improvements

We have seen 10% of attempts to follow a friend into a server fail due to the server being full while successful joins could have unpredictable wait times. To tackle this problem and give players a reliable way to join their friends, we recently released a Join Queue feature - an ordered first-come first-serve approach for joining a full-server. With the launch of this feature in March, we have seen a reduction of failed join attempts by 3% and expect to improve this further with UX enhancements.

Changes to Social Slot Reservations [ON HOLD]

We provide a feature to reserve spots in a server for friends of players to increase the chances of them playing together. While we previously provided full control over this setting, we have observed that some experiences have set this reservation to a very high value, intending to ensure people could always play together with their friends. But, this results in empty servers, negatively impacting player experience.


Long term, we are working on enhancing the default Roblox Optimize option to consider both occupancy and friend spots. However, to address this issue in the short term, we will be limiting the customizable value to 20% to take advantage of the larger server sizes. In the future, we believe that features like Join Queue and more will make playing with friends easier on the platform without the need for these hardcoded settings.

We will be updating the maximum number of customizable server slots to 20% (rounded down) of the Max Player count of the place. If your place is <5 players we will allow a maximum of 1 slot. Places with a higher customized value will be reduced to the 20% maximum.

We’d love to hear any feedback or questions about these updates in the comments below.

213 Likes

This topic was automatically opened after 11 minutes.

MeepCity has had 200-player servers for years, but reserved ~160 of the slots to keep their game around their preferred player count. This change will make it so they can only reserve 40 slots, meaning there will be 160 players in every server if they want to keep their game at 200 player servers. I don’t think limiting devs is a good idea just because a few don’t know how to use this feature properly.

84 Likes

So if we have a 100 player max server size, we will be forced to let all of these servers be filled to at least 80% capacity?

I currently have a 100-player place which serves as a main hub for players. I’ve set the preferred players to 40 as I don’t want every server to be overcrowded/laggy, though I allow the maximum server size to be 100 in case of players wanting to gather on one particular server for an event, hosting a private server, etc.

I don’t understand why Roblox is placing an arbitrary restriction on how many players we, the developers, wish to allow into our servers. That should be our choice to make, not Roblox’s.

114 Likes

What about Server match making?

currently Roblox has an issue where there are available servers but it creates a new one anyway resulting in 1 player servers for a 10 max players game. this behavior has been a huge issue for games that require a lot of players to start playing and more importantly to eventually become extremely fun to play with more players.

20 Likes

While none of these changes particularly impact me, I’d like to ask a related question. On the topic of server player slots, are there any plans to allow developers / game staff to forcibly join servers that are full without kicking a player? We have a game with 50 player slots (with 5 reserved for friends), so it’s not uncommon for servers to be filled up to the brim.
Should something bad happen, whether it be a bug or a player breaking rules, our staff are unable to join the game as it’s full. I’d love for some attention to be given to this issue, whether it’s a new parameter to TeleportService that ignores max players (up to a reasonable limit), or a new group role permission that allows people to join regardless of max players.

40 Likes

Will joining queues be applied to teleports at some point too? At the moment teleporting to a full server gives an error prompt instead of waiting to join, which is a bit annoying when trying to join a friend and the game attempts to teleport said player due to how the game works.

For example, joining a friend on PLS DONATE who is in a VC server will cause this problem as the game tries to teleport the player from the non-VC server to the VC one.

I understand that the join queue might not always be wanted though when teleporting (such as quick matchmaking), so maybe it could be a boolean in TeleportOptions.

19 Likes

In my personal opinion, player-experience should be entirely given to developers, if a developer intentionally wants players to be allowed with friends while being fine with empty servers (some games do not need high player counts to be fun), the developer should be allowed to do this. Player-experience should never be hand-held by Roblox, allow developers to use their own instinct, if they notice low player-retention due to the setting being set to a high value, allow the developer to correct their mistake or allow the developer to retain their settings. Forcing settings only leads to less customisability which is often criticised by developers.

22 Likes

While we previously provided full control over this setting, we have observed that some experiences have set this reservation to a very high value, intending to ensure people could always play together with their friends. But, this results in empty servers

Please give us more control over how players join servers and when new servers are made.

In one of my small games, I’ve seen three servers going on a game with MaxPlayers of 50, when my weekly peak might be 20 concurrent players. I don’t need 3 servers for <20 players, a single server will do.

This is especially an issue for this game of mine. It’s a game big enough to work with a lobby system(players group up to teleport/launch a new match game), but small enough that I can always have just one big server to cater to my whole playerbase at any given point. When I originally implemented this lobby, I had issues because I would have one server with the majority of the players, at ~30/100 capacity, and then I would have one or two other servers with a 1-3 players in them, a major issue for my lobby design.

I had to devise a whole system to force all players in brand new servers to teleport to the biggest lobby server, and that’s just ugly and shouldn’t be necessary.

I theorize these new servers are being created for players of different regions. That feature makes sense for large games with dozen or hundreds of players from any region, but it causes issues for games like mine.

Let use have a real option to fill up servers to X amount before a new server is created, “social slots” doesn’t help with this.

edit: Just caught an example from my small game:

If multiple players was vital for this particular game, I would be losing players because a new server is being created for 1 or 2 players when another exists.

32 Likes

YES! I am EXTREMELY excited for a higher player limit! This sounds amazing!

4 Likes

I’ve had too many times experienced specific games easily have a lot of low player count servers. I do think Roblox should limit how much you can do, but I also agree that 20% could be too little for many experiences.

3 Likes

One of the games I’m developing has a massive 2D following… which I want to recreate (game type) partly into the 3D version… and the following has several thousand on the English servers alone… and there are easily the same amount of players on the other 10-20 countries around the world.

Roblox is very limiting… player wise… and pretty understandable on the strains on servers for the 3D models.

I found it a pain having max 50-100 players… and applied for the Beta “700” ability… after a year… many of us are STILL waiting.
It’s not an issue right now… having still so much to do… but with designing the game… it would be nice to know what the end result will be… as we design according to limitations.

So to get around this… I have to design many experiences/places… for players to be able to go to… to get “around” a certain place being full.
My game has many different maps and fighting styles/functions… so this is not an issue to create different places to play them.

It’s my only work around… but now with the new “200” (/160) player limit… it will help alleviate the problem somewhat… so it IS WELCOMED - Thank You.

However… to Help with the Main Lobby … Game Entrance problems… it would be nice to have that 700 player ability… and they dart off to their zones from there.
There will be very little action or strain on a server (i believe) … but it would be nice to have it ready… for when I release the game.

The worst thing is to have the numbers on release… but very little can get in at the same time… especially Friends … then Town mates… and lastly… Alliances/Countries.

I look forward to more player allowance in the coming weeks/months.

PS: Still waiting for my 700 Beta Ticket :grin:

4 Likes

Why limit the control the developer has over this? It would make much more sense to just give the developer a little warning when adding a lot of spare slots but still allow them to go ahead with it if they have a good reason that’s specific to their game.

28 Likes

This is straight up false, it depends on the game. On the other hand, not being able to join your friends is always a negative player experience.

I’ve also seen a bunch of sandbox games where the first player that joins is the owner of the server, and all other slots are reserved. This approach works well by the way; it’s like private servers but by default and without setup. The new (pointless) limitation would greatly impact the player experience in these games.

9 Likes

Big +1, Roblox needs to remember not to hold our hands sometimes. A little warning when it looks like a setting is configured wrong is all it takes.

15 Likes

Yeah I’ve been really disliking how Roblox doesn’t trust developers to make their own informed decisions regarding their game. I understand providing a warning, but Roblox outright forcing something because they think it will be ‘better’ for us just shows how little trust they have in us.

I thought Roblox promised to listen to feedback before making changes such as this?

7 Likes

Awful change. This completely ruins the ability to make co-op gameplay.

I want to support 2 friends playing together, 8 friends playing together, 8 strangers playing together, one person playing solo. I can’t do that anymore.

I thought backwards compatibility was a big Roblox value. This will break all of my experiences.

How am I supposed to situationally allow for co-op in public and closed environments? Do I seriously have to create my own server browser and different places with varying server slots for something that has been officially supported for years??

24 Likes

This has been a common theme on this platform for years. This is nothing new. I think that a proper explanation for these changes is better than just forcing us to abide. I do think that there’s a particular reason behind this and I am open to hearing that out before I decide whether or not this applies to me.

3 Likes

Will those with more than 200 player servers (from the beta) be able to keep their server size, or will the beta be closed? If the beta is ending, will servers set above 200 be lowered to 200?

2 Likes

What do you think the purpose of making this announcement in advance is? We have half a month to give feedback on this.

3 Likes