These games have been on the front page for months. Often they’re in multiple places (popular, top earning, and/or top rated). That’s good for them because it means they’re doing a really good job on this site. But do they really need the extra publicity by putting them in Featured too? I doubt any of these games are actually benefiting at all from being there. Also, many of the ones that aren’t currently super popular have been on the sort for a really long time (SALVAGE!, Super Bomb Survival).
Now when the Featured sort was first announced and the Featured Sort Nomination category showed up on the dev forums, I (and I think most other developers) were under the impression that the sort would be used to find awesome games that aren’t popular yet but deserve to be. Well it doesn’t seem to be serving that purpose and I think that’s what it should be doing whether it was intended to or not.
It also feels like the people in charge of the Featured sort barely check the nominations category here since there are a lot of great games that haven’t gotten any kind of response whatsoever for months (unless GollyGreg is one of the guys in charge). The category isn’t that busy. There have only been 8 nominations since the start of December. It doesn’t take much effort to check each nomination and say “this game will go on the sort” or “it will not for these reasons: …”
Overall, I’m arguing for two things:
The Featured sort should be used to publicize games that aren’t popular but should be.
If that’s already the goal of the Featured sort, it’s being implemented very very ineffectively.
Sounds like you want a completely different sort that popularizes games that aren’t well-known. Featured is just to show off the best roblox has to offer, and it’s not a coincidence that popular games tend to be the best.
The inherent problem with popularizing games that aren’t well-known is that there’s generally a reason that they aren’t well-known. Why should roblox use precious front page screen space advertising a game that appeals to 10% of players when it could be advertising a game that appeals to 50%?
To help developers. There’s a lot that goes into hitting the front page besides having a fun game that most players enjoy. It costs a lot of money to advertise and it’s hard to improve your game without feedback from regular players, which are hard to get without ads. I think that the people in charge of the Featured sort (or the new sort that serves the purpose I mentioned) are responsible for having a general idea of what players like. I’ve seen games put on the Featured that have gotten ~60% like/dislike ratios.
There’s no way to guarantee that a game put on the sort will be received well, but the people in charge should constantly be looking for and experimenting with new games. The ones that are received well should be left on the sort for longer periods of time and the ones that aren’t should be taken off. The problem is that it doesn’t seem like the people in charge are actively looking for and experimenting with new games.
You also mention this idea of front page space. To me, it seems like a waste of space to put games that are already on the front page in multiple other places on the Featured sort too. I also doubt that their presence on the Featured sort is helping them at all. I’d rather have developer relations use that front page space to experiment with new games as I mentioned.
Hes just talking about the featured sort though, those popular games are on the front page twice pretty much. In the featured sort alone, the “not well known” games are not well known but certainly not bad.
Featured needs to be randomized more. Currently refreshing the front page just shows the same line up in featured.
What’s the point in having it then? As a player I don’t want to see the same game multiple times. If I’ve already seen it on the front page and decided not to play it, I’m not going to play it when I see it two slots down. The front page is for players to find games to play, and showing duplicate games is a direct detraction from that.
Only reason there are so many already-popular games in this current selection is:
In general, I think they’ve been very good about featuring more up-and-coming games as opposed to games that are already popular. This current selection is just a special thing they’re doing for the Bloxy awards.
They could have put these up-and-coming games at the front of the sort and put all the nominees behind. The purpose of featuring all the nominees is so that players could have one place they could see all of them. They could have done this without putting the nominees on the very front page. This is a continuous trend too. It didn’t just happen today. I haven’t been seeing many up-and-coming games on the sort since it first came out.
Also this doesn’t explain the low number of up-and-coming games on the whole sort. They could have added all the nominees to the sort without taking off any up-and-coming games.
100% agree. I think featuring games that are trending towards popular helps their discovery (because people clearly like it; it’s getting popular) rather than featuring unpopular games with a hope that people will enjoy it.
(Which is what I currently see the sort being used for)
I don’t think that they should be using current popularity as the foremost measure determining which games end up on the sort. I think they should be active and play a lot of games and use some basic intuition about game design and what players on roblox tend towards to pick which games to feature. Of course a lot of unpopular games are hard for them to find. That’s what the recommendations category here is for IMO.
Featured rotates on a roughly-daily basis. From when I was on featured in the last set, the difference made by being in that front 8 vs being further back was often almost ~1,000 players.
I agree that this set of featured games is boringly similar to everything we see normally, but as @Cindering pointed out, they are for the Bloxy’s so it isn’t too bad.
Up and coming games should be the main type of game found on Featured, and in all honesty it usually is like that. The popular games don’t need much additional exposure and so placing them in Featured seems a bit pointless (I’m pretty sure most people don’t play these games for the first time by finding them on that sort)
I watched a video of a talk by the head designer of magic the gathering, where he shared the wisdom that “If everyone likes your game, but no one loves it, it will fail”.
That is from the developers perspective, but from roblox’s perspective it means, that if you only have games that cater to a wide audience on the front page, you have a front page that doesnt really cater very well to anyone.
If there instead were a number of focused/niche games, every player can find something they truly love to play (and are willing to spend robux on…).
The fewer players the game tries to appeal to, the stronger that appeal is going to be (assuming equal quality). This is why it makes sense for roblox to have space for those 10% games, when the 50% games already have a home in the popular sort. More discovery, essentially. Thats where steam has been going with their platform, and Im sure they know what theyre doing.
The thing about being a dev is that it skews your perspective drastically from the average player
To you quality might be indicated by some sort of integrity in the building, the systems running the game (Like a DataStore player-matching round system), quality of GUIs and the animations on them-
But more so just stuff that seems like people put a lot of time into.
However the only thing players are concerned with is doing stuff they want to; having fun. If a free modeled piece of garbage will allow them to pretend roleplay that they have a gf and a baby, that’s what they are going to do. Sometimes they’ll simply make their own fun and skew your game to fit their needs. (exploiting glitches to become overpowered, roleplaying as specific characters, trying to take ownership of one focal point on a map)
This has already been disproven by the fact that some of those games have been up there for 2+ years. If they were really destined to fail they wouldn’t be growing every day for the last several years.
True, I mean it would be even better to have both those widely liked games, and a good selection of games with a more focused audience. Which is obviously better than ‘only’ having the former (through redundant representation in multiple categories).
I feel the current systems with its many rigidly defined overlapping categories doenst necessarily serve the player best. IMO it would be better to have a single unified ‘smarter’ category (that take into account multiple factors) with built in randomization to support player discovery and offer exposure to the long tail of games that wouldnt reach the top places in any sort that is ‘stable’ (same games for all users at all times).
Like a single category where games are tagged with the reason theyre shown (popular, high earning, high rated, discovery… maybe filters too, all on the same page). Completely solved redundant representation problem and much more user friendly. Seems easier to tweak and improve for roblox as well.
I agree. When we talk about front page space, every repeat is an inefficiency. The goals of designing the front page should be to (a) minimize the number of repeats on the front page and (b) minimize the clickbait. It seems like Roblox went all in to accomplish (b) without caring about (a) at all when it changed up the front page.
If it were up to me to design the front page, I would have multiple rows of Popular, maybe 3, one row of Featured that meets the goals I outlined above, and one row of Recommended.
No matter what, Top Earning HAS TO GO. It’s the biggest waste of space on the front page.
The only games on Top Earning that aren’t on Popular are Assassin and Bloxburg. And Assassin is immediately behind RoCitizens atm. The most popular games are obviously going to make the most money. And why would any kids care about which games are making the most money?
top earning’s existence as a category is simple, those are the games players are spending the most money on. roblox, being a company that enjoys earning money, is going to promote those games, so that more players continue to spend their money. what we are able to argue against this is the overall increased exposure a game gets from being in more than one spot on the front page. i don’t think a player is more likely to play a game if see more than once on the front page.