Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Fuzzy Avatars Solved! Please re-upload your avatar if it was fuzzy!

What does sandbox mean to you?

2

Comments

  • apocolusterapocoluster newport news, VAPosts: 1,321Member Uncommon
    Means nothing to me...to be fair Theme park means nothing to me either...I game where I find fun..

    No matter how cynical you become, its never enough to keep up - Lily Tomlin

  • MyriaMyria Lowell, MAPosts: 570Member Uncommon

    I'm increasingly convinced that 'sandbox' just has to mean 'my game is better than your game' in some obscure ancient language, because frankly that's the only meaning it has the bulk of the time it's used around here.

    Every single one of the games routinely trotted out as 'sandboxes' are so similar to the much-derided 'themeparks' that the amount of effort and handwaving that goes into trying to draw distinctions quickly surpasses the laughable. And games that might meaningfully be called 'sandbox' -- a category pretty much limited to Second Life, Minecraft, Gary's Mod, et al -- are inevitably barely what you can reasonably call games exactly because of their sandbox nature.

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon

    Sandbox = NO Bloody instances.. 

        10+ years ago when instancing first came about, it seems like the right thing to do, but now.. I think it was a Pandor's box.. I think instancing has caused more harm to MMORPG gaming then anything since..  I also believe that having limited raid sizes and lockouts also damaged the brand..  Everything today just feels like a closed world of lobby games.. :(

  • MeriliremMerilirem Port AugustaPosts: 77Member
    Originally posted by Orenshii

    Show me a feature in a sandbox ill show you it in a themepark. The only difference is the words themselves. world pvp? seen in many themeparksSkills over levels? seen that in a themepark toorocks that run out of ores? themepark alsoLandscape changed by the people of the game? seen that one too..Live a life without hunting monsters? yep have done that also in a themepark.  I think someone came up with another way to segregate and categorize gamesjust to start a fight amoungst people. O

     

    That's simply because a true sandbox game does not exist. We are so entrenched in our old ways that's progress is slower then it needs to be. The idea of a game in which you simply play your part is what a sandbox is. You don't do what your told, you do what you want within a world with laws made by the hands of men. The only difference between a sandbox and life is how comprehensive the system is. It's calls a sandbox because of that. They called WoW a world all the time, didn't make it one.

    If a butterfly learnt to speak, to live in human society, paid its bills, had a job, lived in a fancy house and married a human, is it human?

    Now what if that same butterfly knew how to write code better than any human and had years of experience in the game industry, would that make it a game designer?

    If u wouldn't let a construction worker design your house, then why let a programmer design your world?

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,672Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Rydeson

    Sandbox = NO Bloody instances.. 

     

     

    I don't view the fact that they are instances to negate the mechanics and content within. I agree, that often instances are used to insulate scripted content for themepark gameplay, but not all instanced areas are designed for that purpose.

    What are your thoughts on the housing instances in Free Realms? They're basically big rooms for building and constructing content to play on and around with other people.  Another example would be the housing instances in Puzzle Pirates, which are another customizable environment for player events and gatherings.

    Both are instances designed to accommodate creative gameplay and foster interactive gameplay, two goals that are common to sandboxed focused content.

     

     

     

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • PsiKahnPsiKahn Woodside, NYPosts: 126Member

    I first heard the word "sandbox" used to describe games like GTA.  The thought was that instead of giving you a set path to follow, the developers were giving you a virtual "sandbox" to play around in and see what happens.  Interestingly, I think this could apply to just about any MMO by that loose, older definition.  These days, in the context of MMOs, it seems to specifically refer to games that stray from the kind of tacit (or occasionally overt) pathing that many MMOs provide.  These MMOs are often described as "themepark" games.  Yes, you can do whatever you wish in them, but there are specific benchmarks you need to hit to progress, scripted quests that appear exactly the same for every single player in the game ("attractions," if you will), and an "endgame," which is reached when one has traveled the full path of their characters evolution from start to an arbitrarily set finish point (max level, max stats, max gear etc).

    So when people are clamoring for a "sandbox" MMO, I think they're often asking for less game, more virtual world.

  • RydesonRydeson Canton, OHPosts: 3,858Member Uncommon
         Lok..  I'm all for housing instancing in games..  In fact I love how EQ2 did it, and wish they went either further then they did..  I think there sould be 10+ different options of houses, and guild halls..  SWG had a great concept, but due to minimal restrictions and guidelines it was abused..   When i was refering to instance I was only thinking of that overused overplayed dungeons and raids..  Crafting should be open world as well and restrictive like it was in EQ (with a few tweaks)
  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,672Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Rydeson
         Lok..  I'm all for housing instancing in games..  In fact I love how EQ2 did it, and wish they went either further then they did..  I think there sould be 10+ different options of houses, and guild halls..  SWG had a great concept, but due to minimal restrictions and guidelines it was abused..   When i was refering to instance I was only thinking of that overused overplayed dungeons and raids..  Crafting should be open world as well and restrictive like it was in EQ (with a few tweaks)

    Yeah, the dungeon and raid instances solved several 'social' problems while introducing a whole new set of problems of their own. :)

    There isn't a "right" or "wrong" way to play, if you want to use a screwdriver to put nails into wood, have at it, simply don't complain when the guy next to you with the hammer is doing it much better and easier. - Allein
    "Graphics are often supplied by Engines that (some) MMORPG's are built in" - Spuffyre

  • TigasnakeTigasnake Philadelphia, PAPosts: 33Member
    It's tough to describe what a sandbox should be without dropping game titles.  Like if I were to explain what's necessary for a sandbox to be successful, I'd say SWG or Ultima Online.  These games had their flaws, of course.  But you cannot take away the fact that these games taught us the meaning of "Sandbox".  It is creating a game that gives the players the tools to create their own content.  (A bunch of RP tools, Housing, Economy, Unrestricted skills/classes, and most importantly to develop mechanics for players to always be able to mold their own fun.  Hence the term "sandbox".
  • ArclanArclan Chicago, ILPosts: 1,494Member Uncommon

    I prefer the k.i.s.s. philosophy.

    Sandbox is a game with no quest hubs (although there may still be thousands of quests).

    People try to over-define sandbox by adding things like pvp and player housing. Just clouds the issue.

    Luckily, i don't need you to like me to enjoy video games. -nariusseldon.
    In F2P I think it's more a case of the game's trying to play the player's. -laserit

  • sk8chalifsk8chalif Montreal, QCPosts: 599Member Uncommon

    A Sandbox MMO has NO defined goals. It is a world where players are given the tools to make thier own fun (you know, like a sandbox). Ultima Online at launch was a sandbox. There were no levels, there were no quests. There were just players and creatures in a world and players invented their own fun and their own goals within the world.

     

     

     

    "The MMO where everything's player-made and the points don't matter."

    image
    ~The only opinion that matters is your own.Everything else is just advice,~

  • VidirVidir GothenburgPosts: 944Member Uncommon

    Sandbox game for me is a game where you do what you want to do and not what other people wants you to do.

     

  • YamotaYamota LondonPosts: 6,620Member

    For me sandbox means go anywhere and do whatever you want (within reason) and still feel like you are progressing. 

    In other words quest hub, level bracketted zones are not sandbox.

    Now to have that you usually need no levels, or less emphasis on levels, and more on skills and attributes.

  • IselinIselin Vancouver, BCPosts: 5,616Member Uncommon

    "Sandbox" is an inprecise term that is virtually meaningless. It is about as descriptive a term as "nice."

    It is often used here to describe games that emphasize elements that are generally time-consuming, unrewarding and appeal to a small sub-set of gamer for whom micromanaging detail is fun. The more painfully detailed the crafting is and the more interior-decorating options available, the better and the more likely the game is to be annointed with the S word. A certain amount of harsh treatment of the player--especially with severe death penalties--also seems to be a required component...perhaps S&M has more mass appeal than I had ever imagined.

    It is also a catch-all term used to describe games that don't feature whatever the communiity currently thinks are bad things in evil themeparks: classes, levels, quests, instances, heroism, quick-travel and, god forbid, LFG tools. In other words, there is a large amount of retro nostalgia thrown into the use of the word. A desire to return to the early days of MMOs when none of those things existed and MMOs were alledgedly more fun because of it. There were damn good reasons why all of those themeparky things were created but never you mind...they're evil.

    The term has also become shorthand for some unscrupulous savy marketers as a new way to say "new and improved!" Never mind, the cheesy dated graphics and incomplete pre-alpha releases... graphics are for scrubs and "features" are for carebears!

  • AdoniAdoni Tucson, AZPosts: 349Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by maccarthur2004
    Originally posted by XAPGames

    For me, a sandbox world is a simulation, a themepark world is a game.

     

    Simulation = Turn me loose in a world to do what I want with whatever tools the developer has provided.

    Game = Developer provides a one-path or multi-path route to completion with developer provided content (tasks, stories) along the way.

     

     

    I agree.

     

    For me, sandbox = Ultima Online. The more a mmo is near the UO setting, more "sandboxy" is it.

     

     

    For me UO is a great example of a sandbox. *plays in the sandbox*

    image
  • erictlewiserictlewis Cottondale, ALPosts: 3,026Member Uncommon

    Sandbox has different meanings to different folks.

    Sandbox means to be not being fenced in. By that I mean I should not have to get on the hamster wheel of death. This means I should not be forced to do quest a, quest, then quest c to progress.

    I should be able to go anywhere on the map at any time and do whatever I want without having to do the theampark quest hubs. I should be able to choose what to do and level up my own way.

    SWG was much like this before cu. After the cu we were forced into doing quest after quest, I hated kashyyyk and how that all went down and that was just what we saw headed our way with mustifar.

    Oh well that is my 2 coppers worth.

  • eye_meye_m Notta Chance, ABPosts: 3,133Member Uncommon

    For me, a sandbox is driven by player created content while a themepark is developer created content.  A sandbox should be a roleplayers paradise, where as a themepark is a casual's paradise.

     

    This however, does not seem to be the case from what I witness in games. A sandpark is a free-for-all, while a themepark attempts to balance things between players.

    All of my posts are either intelligent, thought provoking, funny, satirical, sarcastic or intentionally disrespectful. Take your pick.

    I get banned in the forums for games I love, so lets see if I do better in the forums for games I hate.

    I enjoy the serenity of not caring what your opinion is.

  • znaiikaznaiika denver, PAPosts: 203Member
    Originally posted by XAPGames

    For me, a sandbox world is a simulation, a themepark world is a game.

     

    Simulation = Turn me loose in a world to do what I want with whatever tools the developer has provided.

     

     

    This ^^^.

    Sandbox = no limits to skills and atributes you can master, no limits where you could build, dig, clime, swim etc.

    All possible options available to use even hiring workers/npcs to help me, just like in sims.

    All from first person perspective, just like in real life.

  • IcewhiteIcewhite Elmhurst, ILPosts: 6,403Member
    It's kind of a hokey religion. But then so is every other Brand.

    Self-pity imprisons us in the walls of our own self-absorption. The whole world shrinks down to the size of our problem, and the more we dwell on it, the smaller we are and the larger the problem seems to grow.

  • shirlntshirlnt Houston, TXPosts: 355Member

    To me, sandbox has to do with the amount of choices a player can make and the amount of control a player has over the game world.  Think of an actual sanbox.  There is sand in a box.  There are very few rules about what you can do in the sandbox (although they may very according to the location of the sandbox and who is around).  The thing that makes a sandbox fun is what a person chooses to do with the sand and what "tools"/toys  the person has to use in the sand.  As long as the person stays within the rules, there is really no right or wrong way to play in the sand (Is it wrong to dig in the sand versus building a sand castle?  Is it wrong to make "mudpies"?  Is it wrong to bring in a toy dump truck or other toy cars?  Who can prove that one way of playing is better than another when it is about personal preferences and mood at the time?).

    In MMOs, the degree to which a game is "sandbox" varies which is part of the reason why people argue over whether or not a game is considered "sandbox."  It is also a reason for the conflict when someone says they want a sandbox game and others say "are you supporting current sandbox games?" or "there are sandbox games already in existence."  For example, people have pointed out Vanguard as an example of the failure of sandbox games.  I have played Vanguard but it is not what I'm looking for in a sandbox.  Why? Players are limited to one class and are leveled.  Some of the features of Vanguard that make it a challenge are things that could be considered sandbox but not something that makes a sandbox appealing to me.  Add to the varying degrees to which a game can be "sandbox" all the other features that can vary in a game, and it leads to those who enjoy at least some degree of sandbox complaining about the lack of games with sandbox features.  For those who enjoy straight "themepark" games, there is such a large amount of themepark games available that there's a better chance of finding at least one with the features they want.

    For an example of a "game" that is an ultimate sandbox, there is Second Life.  The majority of the content in the game is player made or player provided.  The company provided some of the building blocks.  The potential problem with a sandbox to that extreme is there is a lack of uniformity across the "game" world and it becomes many games with the same launch point.  It also leads to more abuses of the system.

  • Ice-QueenIce-Queen USA, GAPosts: 2,451Member Uncommon
    For me, games like Ultima Online and Asheron's Call 1 were sandbox games. I always had so much I could do in those 2 games. I didn't have my hand held the whole time I played like most mmorpg's today. I never got bored until the games had aged a lot and there became less and less people playing.

    image

    What happens when you log off your characters????.....
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFQhfhnjYMk
    Dark Age of Camelot

  • Dantae87Dantae87 Camloops, ABPosts: 166Member

    SANDBOX= do whatever ou want without guild lines.

    Think of a sandbox when u r a kid...u can do whatever u wanted. this is what a sandbox is.

     

    image

  • YakkinYakkin irvine, CAPosts: 919Member
    Sandbox is a meaningless buzzword used to cover a massive number of games that possess fewer restrictions than most games. The people who use this term tend to be just as delusional as the people who insist that absolute linearity is the way to go, due to their general massive egotism, elitism, and general douchebaggery. To an outsider, both sides are just having an embarassing dick-slap fight that ends with both looking stupid in the long term.
  • laokokolaokoko TaipeiPosts: 2,003Member

    I always imagine playing an mmorpg like it is a second life.  As in it let me felt I was living and breathing in a real world.  That's what sandbox mean to me.  Everyone will be their unique self, not like the mmorpg today where everyone is just another replica of another.

    An unrealistic expectation to realism which will never be possible to achieve.  That is what meant to me. 

  • JemcrystalJemcrystal Champaign, ILPosts: 1,554Member Uncommon

    Good question.  My idea of Sandbox is an MMO I can "live in."  Something that offers a wide variety of unique and interesting objectives.  Not JUST questing or dungeons.   I play Mabinogi and call it a sandbox because I  live in a house, grow crops, and get a job to pay for it.  I pursue social skills like composing.  I can make songs or start a band.  I'm happy with it.  I guess I want to be in a cyberworld that lets me accomplish things I'll never get around to accomplishing in real life.  I'm never going to learn to play the lute, drums, flute, or become a renown composer in real life.  I can in Mabinogi and make a reputation.  

    Tho it's not an mmo I play Sims 2 because I can design clothing or furniture.  Not fullfilling enough when you cannot get on wtih buddies and kill stuff, so I still prefer the mmo.

    Sandbox lets you be creative while giving your avatar a home and stuff to kill.

2
Sign In or Register to comment.