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Making a Basic Platformer

Making a Basic Platformer

Sep 30 2019, 12:16 PM PST 30 min

Intro to Roblox Studio

Let’s begin by checking out a sample platformer, or obby (obstacle course) in Roblox terminology. In an obby, players jump from one place to another while avoiding obstacles to reach the end of a level.

Open the Obby Template

Templates are pre-built Roblox projects that you can use as a start for your own games. There’s an existing obby template you can test to get an idea of what you’ll be making.

  1. In Roblox Studio, click the New button in the upper-left.
  1. Find the template named Obby and click the tile to open it.

Play the Obby

To test the obby template, simply press the Play button.

In game, use these controls:

Control Action
W A S D Move your character around
Spacebar Jump
Right Mouse Button Look around

Stop Playing

To stop playing, press the Stop button.

Designing an Obby

Now that you know what an obby is, it’s time to create your own.

  1. First, click the in the Obby tab (or FileClose) to exit out of the template. Don’t worry about saving any changes if you’re prompted.
  2. Now, start with a new project file by clicking the Baseplate template.

Delete the Baseplate

You’ll need a completely empty world to start building the obby, so first delete the baseplate object:

  1. Look for the Explorer window which lists all the objects in your game. You can use the Explorer to select and work with parts even if you can’t see them in the game editor window.
  1. Click the small arrow next to Workspace to expand the tree.
  1. Click on the Baseplate to select it.
  1. Press Delete on the keyboard.

Create a Starting Point

In Roblox, a SpawnLocation marks where a player appears in the world at the start of the game or after restarting. Without a spawn location, players might spawn in the middle of nowhere and fall to their doom.

To create a new spawn location:

  1. In the Explorer window, hover your mouse over Workspace.
  2. Click the circle button.
  1. Scroll through the drop-down list until you find SpawnLocation and click on it.
The new spawn location will be created at the exact center of your camera view.

Moving the Camera

Now that you have an object in your game, move the camera around to get a better view.

Control Action
W Forward
S Back
A Left
D Right
Q Down
E Up
Shift Change camera speed
Right Mouse Button Turn camera
Middle Mouse Button Pan camera
F Focus camera on selected part

Adding & Moving Parts

Parts are the basic building blocks of a game. You can use them to build a series of platforms.

Add a Part

  1. Select the Model tab and click the Part icon:
A new part will appear at the center of your camera view.

Move the Part

To move the new part where you’d like it to be:

  1. Make sure the part is selected (click on it in the game editor window).
  2. Use the camera controls you learned earlier to get a good view.
  3. Select the Move tool.
  1. Drag the colored arrows to move the part near the spawn location, giving players an easy first jump.

Part Snapping

In Roblox, studs are the basic measurement unit. Here, the white grid shows the size of each stud:

If a part only moves in “steps” or rotates 45° at a time, this is because of snapping. Snapping is useful when moving parts that should be placed exactly together, like the walls of buildings.

To adjust the snap amount, enter a different number for Rotate or Move (or click the small arrows within the fields).

Alternatively, you can turn snapping off by unchecking the box next to Rotate or Move.


Anchoring Parts in Place

If you play your obby now, you’ll notice that any parts you’ve added other than the spawn location will fall into empty space. Anchoring locks parts in place and stops them from moving — they’ll even stay in place when players or other objects bump into them.

  • Anchor parts by selecting them and clicking the Anchor button.

Scaling & Rotating Parts

Changing the size and angle of parts lets you creatively design your obby and adjust the difficulty.

Scale the Part

Parts can be easily resized along any axis:

  1. Select the Scale tool.
  1. Select a part in your obby and drag the colored handles in any direction.

Rotate the Part

Rotating parts works in a similar way:

  1. Select the Rotate tool.
  1. Drag the handles on the sphere to rotate around an axis.

Toggling Collisions

In Roblox Studio, the Collisions option lets you control if parts should be blocked from moving into each other. To turn collisions on or off, click the Collisions button:

If you set collisions on, you won’t be able to move a part into any position where it overlaps another part. If you set collisions off, you can freely move parts anywhere in the world.


Finishing the Obby

One jump isn’t enough to make a fun obby, so add 5–6 more parts using the tools you’ve learned about. Try creating different part types by clicking the small arrow below the Part button, and use different sizes/rotations for variety.

Reminders
  • As you create more parts, remember to view your obby course from multiple angles. Parts might not line up the way you think if you're only looking from one direction.
  • If any of the parts fall down into space, you probably didn't anchor them.
  • If a part is scaling or rotating in "steps," you may need to adjust or turn off snapping.
  • If a part is being blocked from moving or rotating into another part, turn off collisions.

Playtesting

Now is a good time to test the obby and make sure everything works. Just click the Play button to test your design.

Playtesting Tips
  • Make sure your game works, particularly changes you just made.
  • Look for areas that can be improved and balanced. If all of the jumps are too hard, players will get frustrated, but if the jumps are too easy, they'll probably get bored.

Publishing a Project

It’s good practice to publish your game to Roblox every 10–15 minutes. In addition to saving your work to a secure place, publishing allows other players on Roblox to play your game.

  1. Select FilePublish to Roblox.
  1. Click New Place.
  1. Enter a name and description.
  2. Click Create Place.
  3. When the bar is full and you see “100% Completed,” click the blue Next button.
  4. On the next screen, you’ll see information about extra features. You can skip those steps for now — just click the Done button.

Where next? Add more color to your obby, start coding, or build rotating platforms by following the tutorials below.

Tags:
  • basics
  • studio
  • obby