“We’re not a company that does a lot of marketing. The No 1 way that someone finds out about our platform is they get invited to play by a friend. And the second way is they’ll watch people playing on YouTube,” says Roblox’s chief business officer Craig Donato. “So it’s very much an organic phenomenon.”

He also suggests that one reason for Roblox’s popularity is its emphasis on “unstructured play” in an era when many children are more restricted in their physical-world activities than previous generations were.

“When I came home from school, I’d get on my bike, go out in the woods, do pick-up baseball. But we live in a world today where it’s hard for kids to go out and have unstructured play with their friends,” he says. “Most of the experiences on our platform aren’t just about the object to win. It’s an experience you have with other people: a shared experience.”

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