Roblox’s acquisition of Guilded was surprising and unexpected in moving away from a “metaverse” platform. Roblox strives to ensure that its platform is age-appropriate, allows parents to monitor their children’s behavior, and seeks to make parents feel secure. Voice chat complicates much of Roblox’s basic design as a child-friendly and safe space, especially given that other companies have struggled to curb the toxicity in voice communication.
Voice chat in Roblox.Rovox?
Rather than building voice chat into a layer of functionality that sits on top of the Roblox client, Roblox is seamlessly weaving it into the experience of testing that functionality. It is to get closer to the way people used to communicate in real life while at the same time overcoming the physical boundaries of communication and prioritizing a safe and civil environment.
Immersive 3D speech brings the same rules to Roblox’s virtual experience as talking to an actual person. It is not clear how Roblox users will achieve this, but the blog mentions that immersive 3D voice chat adapts to changes in the user’s speaking style, from whispering to shouting. The blog says that immersive 3D voice chat adapts to changes in the user’s speech, from whispering to shouting. While users may already have a library of muscle memory and animations to express meaning through avatar movements, the goal of recreating real, physical speech is ambitious.
The voice chat was released to developers and community members today and was demonstrated by the Roblox_RTC account on Twitter. In the video, you can view a 3D voice-chat in action, with some characters speaking from a distance and others speaking from close up, getting louder the closer they get to the speaker. Mute can be done by simply clicking on the microphone icon above the character’s head, including yourself. This can also be done from the options menu. You can also configure the audio device that Roblox will use for voice chat.
Roblox also wants to allow users to communicate with each other regardless of whether they are in the same instance/experience or not. In its blog, the company says, “You can have a conversation with a friend who is elsewhere on the platform.” It also allows users to seamlessly switch between modes of communication, including text, voice, video, and immersive.
Thus, the goal of having voice chat as an immersive communication tool and default VoIP option in the Roblox ecosystem may explain the Guilded acquisition. In an interview with Techcrunch. Manuel Bronstein, Roblox’s chief product officer, said that “Guilded has a great roadmap” and that Roblox wants to support its development “without any hardcore integration at this point. Still, Gilded developers can give Roblox insight into creating their own extra voice platform that can sit on top of Roblox without interfering with the custom game experience.
The launch of voice-chat for all users will undoubtedly make moderation more complex, and Bronstein claims that Roblox will gradually expand the functionality of voice-chat, creating new moderation and safety tools at each stage of the release until it can handle the load of all Roblox users. Bronstein claims that Roblox will gradually expand the voice chat functionality, creating new moderation and safety tools at each stage of the release until it can handle the load of all Roblox users.
The Roblox blog notes that Roblox’s “community can self-moderate and flag users who do not adhere to community standards, and those users can be removed from the experience or lose their right to speak.” While this trust in the community’s judgment is commendable, it does not foresee how reporting could be misused to bully or harass users. An element of human oversight is needed to ensure that such systems are being used for their intended purpose.
Roblox intends to use voice chat as the next step in integrating the “metaverse” concept and making it more cohesive. But before that can be finalized, the game’s infrastructure and moderation need to support the new types of problems that voice chat could introduce into the Roblox ecosystem, or else voice chat will join the many problems Roblox is already facing. If not, voice chat will join the many problems Roblox already faces.