With Roblox betting heavily on the future of user-generated content, the online gaming platform, ubiquitous in the under-13 age group, is hiring accordingly.
The company announced Tuesday that it had hired former Google Play VP Tian Lim to lead the product team for its Creator Group, the company’s internal division focused on user-made games and experiences.
Lim will focus on building the company’s beginner-friendly ecosystem for developers, which will include many young users who are new to game development, as well as professional game studios looking to lead the platform’s dedicated community to commercial success.
“I look forward to engaging with the passionate ones Roblox community of developers and creators and help build an immersive, safe and civil Metaverse platform,” said Lim.
Before joining Roblox, Lim worked on Google’s mobile app ecosystem, Google Play, for five years. He was Hulu’s CTO from 2014-2017 and previously led teams at Xbox and PlayStation, including the team developing avatars for Xbox Live.
“I’ve seen many different types of ecosystems now, from AAA to mobile,” Lim told TechCrunch.
Lim will be working with Nick Tornow, another former CTO who joined Roblox’s creator efforts last year. Tornow serves as the VP of Engineering for the company’s Creator Group.
Roblox places great emphasis on custom games and other virtual spaces created by its community. While traditional social networks recognized the power — and profitability — of user-generated content more than a decade ago, the gaming world has been much slower to embrace the idea.
User-generated content, or “UGC,” is on the rise in the gaming world, and creative ecosystems like Epic’s Roblox, Minecraft, and Fortnite are well-positioned to capitalize on this trend. Roblox – itself more of a platform than a game in the traditional sense – gives developers the basic digital tools to build anything they can think of.
In turn, game developers are populating Roblox with “experiences,” the company’s name for the millions of portals it hosts that offer everything from chill hang rooms to slasher horror games to interactive Gucci-branded art exhibits.
While no one can agree on what the metaverse will be like or when it will get here, user-generated content generally plays a part in this conversation – and Roblox is no exception.
“I don’t think Roblox is trying to build the Metaverse,” Lim said. “It’s building the platform and the operating system Per the metaverse.”