Meta announced today that it is bringing the Roblox-like Crayta, a game development platform that lets you create and play games with your friends in real time, to Facebook Gaming’s cloud streaming service. The company says Crayta offers an easy-to-use developer toolkit and makes game creation more accessible, whether you’re building on mobile or desktop.
The company acquired Unit 2 Games, the studio behind Crayta, in June 2021. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the entire Unit 2 Games team joined as part of the acquisition. Crayta originally launched exclusively for Google Stadia, but made its debut on the Epic Games Store last year.
“In the past it was really difficult to render something like this in this high quality of a 3D environment in a browser or on phones, but to do it with a cloud infrastructure and then send it over the network after it’s already being rendered in the cloud is a pretty big step forward,” said Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s CEO, in a video about the launch.
By making Crayta available via Facebook Gaming’s cloud streaming service, users don’t need to download the game to their computer in order to play it. The free-to-play game development platform will be available to anyone with a Facebook account.
“Today, people often think of the metaverse as 3D experiences that you can have in virtual and augmented reality, but I think Crayta shows that you can build these types of experiences very easily in all kinds of 2D environments, both and including only within the Facebook app on phones and computers,” Zuckerberg said.
Crayta’s platform can be used to create and publish a simple multiplayer game in just 15 minutes, with no coding or other specialized knowledge required, the company notes. Up to 20 people can collaborate on games at the same time on the platform.
The launch of Crayta on Facebook Gaming represents Meta’s continued investment in the Metaverse. While there’s no real “metaverse” yet, the catchphrase has been widely used by Zuckerberg and Meta over the past year, even driving recent corporate branding changes. Earlier this year, Meta released financials for its Reality Labs division for the first time, announcing that it lost more than $10 billion over the past year. The company expects losses to only get bigger this year, suggesting that Meta has seemingly endless money to spend building the Metaverse and likely has quite a bit of time to pull it off before other smaller companies.
As part of today’s announcement, Zuckerberg also announced that Facebook Gaming is expanding the availability of its catalog of cloud games to Western Europe. Meta says this is an important step for the company, noting that going forward, the same infrastructure will be critical in delivering Metaverse experiences across all of Meta’s platforms.