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Are classes really a sandbox feature?

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  • thenetavengethenetavenge San Diego, CAPosts: 29Member

    Are classes a sandbox feature... Maybe.

     

    If you look at previous sandbox style games, several had classes.  The 'open/sandbox' nature was preserved as the character was not locked to any of these classes and they could be mixed to create hybrid classes.

     

    SWG is a good example, it technically had classes; however, users were not locked into the classes, and could pick a mix of trees from several of the classes.  So you could have a Master Swordsman with some points in Fencer, some in Medic, some in artisan, etc.

     

    There are games with no defined class trees, and are just a mix of skills.  However I have seen class-less games that are far from offering a sandbox experience as the skill choices are too limited or require a linear choice in the skill systems.

     

    Based on SWG, as long as you aren't locked to a 'class' for your character, then they can work in a sandbox rather well.

     

    My two cents.

  • LoktofeitLoktofeit Stone Mountain, GAPosts: 13,647Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by azzamasin

    When I think of sandbox I think of total player freedom and choice.  With the recent speculation that EQN will feature classes does this really fit into a Sandbox mentality?

    It depends on how they are used.

     

    I think you'll all find the whole sandbox/themepark thing less confusing if you start thinking of it in terms of use and purpose instead of concrete features.

    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
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  • apocolusterapocoluster newport news, VAPosts: 1,321Member Uncommon

    When I think sand box.  I think  cat pee and GIJoe's buried forever 

     

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

  • SavageHorizonSavageHorizon ParisPosts: 2,070Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by azzamasin

    When I think of sandbox I think of total player freedom and choice.  With the recent speculation that EQN will feature classes does this really fit into a Sandbox mentality?

     

    I am hoping that classes are nothing but a starting point and that there is "a lot" of freedom within the class structure and that it becomes possible that no 2 classes will be the same.

    I'm going to say this for the 100th time, stop hanging on top Smeds "sandbox" comment, i will bet you any money that EQN is no more sandbox than ArcheAge or Age Of Wushu, these games are very feature rich sandpark hybrid game.

    Smed has set himself flak just by making silly claims that EQN will be the largest sandbox ever.

    Is he saying that EQN is going to be like WurmOnline which is a full blown sandbox mmo with complete Terraforming.

    And Terraforming is not the only feature that WurmOnline has http://wurmonline.com/about-the-game/

    Not just house building but shaping the whole entire world, paths, trees, floral, buildings.

    I don't think so, so from that we know that Smed idea of a sandbox is not really a true sandbox mmo.

    Away from WurmOnline i'm pretty sure ATITD has some sort of class system, i might be wrong though.

    http://www.atitd.com/

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  • LanfeaLanfea EssenPosts: 219Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by SavageHorizon

    I'm going to say this for the 100th time, stop hanging on top Smeds "sandbox" comment, i will bet you any money that EQN is no more sandbox than ArcheAge or Age Of Wushu, these games are very feature rich sandpark hybrid game. Smed has set himself flak just by making silly claims that EQN will be the largest sandbox ever.

     

     

    i totally agree. every information you can gather about eqnext given by officials from SOE makes me belive that 'sandbox is the new f2p' - just another stupid marketing bullshit term.

  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member
    Originally posted by Lanfea
    Originally posted by SavageHorizon

    I'm going to say this for the 100th time, stop hanging on top Smeds "sandbox" comment, i will bet you any money that EQN is no more sandbox than ArcheAge or Age Of Wushu, these games are very feature rich sandpark hybrid game. Smed has set himself flak just by making silly claims that EQN will be the largest sandbox ever.

     

     

    i totally agree. every information you can gather about eqnext given by officials from SOE makes me belive that 'sandbox is the new f2p' - just another stupid marketing bullshit term.

    Well you never know... maybe the sandbox is F2P but the tools are sub only XD (you get everything in the game, every class, every item, every race, deity, whatnot but not the ability to do things which would shape the world differently in a direct fashion, IE: nation building, limited to renter homes, etc).

    image
  • LanfeaLanfea EssenPosts: 219Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Dihoru
    Originally posted by Lanfea
    Originally posted by SavageHorizon

    I'm going to say this for the 100th time, stop hanging on top Smeds "sandbox" comment, i will bet you any money that EQN is no more sandbox than ArcheAge or Age Of Wushu, these games are very feature rich sandpark hybrid game. Smed has set himself flak just by making silly claims that EQN will be the largest sandbox ever.

     

     

    i totally agree. every information you can gather about eqnext given by officials from SOE makes me belive that 'sandbox is the new f2p' - just another stupid marketing bullshit term.

    Well you never know... maybe the sandbox is F2P but the tools are sub only XD (you get everything in the game, every class, every item, every race, deity, whatnot but not the ability to do things which would shape the world differently in a direct fashion, IE: nation building, limited to renter homes, etc).

    well, maybe my bad english, but you got me wrong. i meant that the term 'sanbox' is nowadays used like the term 'f2p'. a marketing phrase to sell and hype stuff.

  • DihoruDihoru ConstantaPosts: 2,731Member
    Originally posted by Lanfea
    Originally posted by Dihoru
    Originally posted by Lanfea
    Originally posted by SavageHorizon

    I'm going to say this for the 100th time, stop hanging on top Smeds "sandbox" comment, i will bet you any money that EQN is no more sandbox than ArcheAge or Age Of Wushu, these games are very feature rich sandpark hybrid game. Smed has set himself flak just by making silly claims that EQN will be the largest sandbox ever.

     

     

    i totally agree. every information you can gather about eqnext given by officials from SOE makes me belive that 'sandbox is the new f2p' - just another stupid marketing bullshit term.

    Well you never know... maybe the sandbox is F2P but the tools are sub only XD (you get everything in the game, every class, every item, every race, deity, whatnot but not the ability to do things which would shape the world differently in a direct fashion, IE: nation building, limited to renter homes, etc).

    well, maybe my bad english, but you got me wrong. i meant that the term 'sanbox' is nowadays used like the term 'f2p'. a marketing phrase to sell and hype stuff.

    I know but I am just saying one way it could possibly work :P

    image
  • dllddlld GöteborgPosts: 541Member Uncommon
    If we are talking your standard wow type select a class at character creation and have that choice be locked forever and completely define your character before you even entered the world, then no I wouldn't say that's very sandboxy.
  • TheHavokTheHavok San Jose, CAPosts: 2,398Member Uncommon

    Sandbox is a made up term anyways.  People can't even agree on what makes a sandbox compared to a non-sandbox.

    Who says that a sandbox game can't have classes?

  • GrailerGrailer HamiltonPosts: 876Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by strangiato2112
    Originally posted by azzamasin

    When I think of sandbox I think of total player freedom and choice.  With the recent speculation that EQN will feature classes does this really fit into a Sandbox mentality?

     

    I am hoping that classes are nothing but a starting point and that there is "a lot" of freedom within the class structure and that it becomes possible that no 2 classes will be the same.

    Star Wars Galaxies had classes

    SWG was a sandpark

     

    It had landmarks that were from the movies which had quests etc .  But also had a lot of sandbox type of things going on.

     

  • RoxtarrRoxtarr Freeland, MI, MIPosts: 1,122Member

    The question posed by the OP is a perfect example of the problem developers have and will always have when attempting to make a Sandbox game - nobody can agree on what a sandbox game actually is. People understand the 'principle' of what a sandbox is, but nobody can agree on how to implement those principles in the game.

    As far as the question of the OP, I honestly don't see the problem with classes if players can switch between them. Heck, I don't see the problem with choosing one at character creation, but I'm pretty sure I heard that they liked the idea of being able to change classes on the same character (thinking it was the Future of MMO panel hosted by MMORPG.com).

    If in 1982 we played with the current mentality, we would have burned down all the pac man games since the red ghost was clearly OP. Instead we just got better at the game.
    image

  • XerathuleXerathule Dallas, TXPosts: 114Member
    Originally posted by azzamasin

    When I think of sandbox I think of total player freedom and choice.  With the recent speculation that EQN will feature classes does this really fit into a Sandbox mentality?

     

    I am hoping that classes are nothing but a starting point and that there is "a lot" of freedom within the class structure and that it becomes possible that no 2 classes will be the same.

    Skyrim is a good example for freedom to be what you want and I find it better to have classes because it is traditional for EQ and I like knowing that somebody is a healer instead of a guy who wants to DPS most of the time instead of heal!  I have to point out that if anybody has made a Healer class fun, it is Blizzard regardless if anybody wants to admit that.  They took that to a new level so now we have to see if EQ can take that  to the next level or just build on that and bring us EQ Next with all of the great innovative ideas Blizzard has brought and leave out the recent bad ones!

     

    Oh wait I forgot, if a game was to use some of the great innovative ideas of Blizzard then it would be a WoW-Clone!!!!!  So I guess we should just through out all of the great ideas Blizzard had or kill off the MMO industry because nobody can use those ideas right? 

     

  • immodiumimmodium ManchesterPosts: 1,576Member Uncommon

    Like many have stated, no one is going to agree with what a sandbox is.

     

    If I cant dig for stone/chop trees down(manipulating sand) and create a stone fort/wooden house(make a sand castle), It's not a sandbox IMO. Sandbox is the freedom to terraform the world, not the freedom of an open ended skill system.

    Look at Minecraft, Everyone is equal in that game. What makes players different is not classes, it's what they have crafted for themselves. Classes are an RPG element, not a sandbox one. That's not to say you can't have classes in a sandbox game.

     

    EDIT: I'd also like to add that sandbox elements, IMO have little to do with combat. It's more about crafting, and crafting classes. The only combat sandbox elements is the destruction of the games world, be it through battle or trolling. :)

    image
  • zymurgeistzymurgeist Pittsville, VAPosts: 5,211Member Uncommon
    Sandboxes have nonlinear gameplay. There is no such thing as a "sandbox feature" just varying levels of nonlinearity.

    "Strong and bitter words indicate a weak cause" ~Victor Hugo

  • AntariousAntarious Greenville, SCPosts: 2,802Member

    I'll put it this way...

     

    In a true "sandbox" .. sure classes can be a feature.   However, in a true "sandbox" that would mean one of the users created the "system" and not SOE.   This would be like going into Second Life and taking part in one of the various combat sims.   If you change the appearance of your avatar (hair, skin, eyes, clothes, animations etc) everything is created by a user... even the combat system on that combat sim will be created by a user (not linden labs).

     

    Sandbox by definition only has a few features... such as user imagination and ability to create.

     

    So as others have said.. there seems to be a great deal of confusion about sandbox and it certainly means different things to different people.

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  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member

    There's no risk or reward for picking a class, only costs. If you look at a player's avatar as being part of the shared world that all the players are in, picking a class definitely creates a persistent change in the world, but once that change is made, it's permanent. The player is not longer interacting with it, and other players aren't interacting with it either. It becomes a static feature of the world.

    This is based on how classes are implemented in every MMORPG I've ever played that has classes. I can't think of a way to implement classes that I would consider sandbox, but I suppose it could be done.

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  • sirphobossirphobos Ames, IAPosts: 614Member Common
    Originally posted by Waterlily
    It's becoming very apparent that every person has a completely different definition of what is a sandbox.

     

  • DMKanoDMKano Gamercentral, AKPosts: 8,518Member Uncommon

    Class system can have a lot of freedom if you can multi class and select specific skills within each class - Archeage is a good example of this.

    So even if 10 players are all warriors with combat/devotion/adamant schools they could all be completely different as each one could pick 24 different skills from those schools.

     

  • asdarasdar Tequesta, FLPosts: 662Member Uncommon

    Definition of Sandbox/Theme park that I use is that it's a scale that goes from pure sandbox to pure Theme park. Pure Sandbox would be Programming the game yourself, every choice is made by the player. Pure Theme park would be a movie, with no choices at all made by the player. Each feature can be defined as more or less sand this way, but Sand doesn't always equal good in my opinion.

    Classes take the decision out of the players hands so it's more theme park than sand. I'm 100% for classes, but I'm also a Sandbox proponent. It's just one of the features that I think is more important than choice.

    I think classes could be forced in a more sandbox way. Skill caps and limits, choices between skills where a class choice must be made and the like. For example you could make a choice that if you take this healing skill you can't take a 2h sword skill. You might still be able to take a 1h sword skill or archery skill. It's all fluid. That way if you wanted to be a healer you'd almost have to take a branch that led to healing skills over combat skills. Hybrids would then be players that decided they'd rather have this one skill over a certain healer skill, so they'd be less a healer, but maybe better overall, or in certain situations.

    That gets complicated, but there's choices that make classes more sand. Straight up classes is not sand though.

    Asdar

  • DullahanDullahan Posts: 2,053Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by asdar

    Definition of Sandbox/Theme park that I use is that it's a scale that goes from pure sandbox to pure Theme park. Pure Sandbox would be Programming the game yourself, every choice is made by the player. Pure Theme park would be a movie, with no choices at all made by the player. Each feature can be defined as more or less sand this way, but Sand doesn't always equal good in my opinion.

    Classes take the decision out of the players hands so it's more theme park than sand. I'm 100% for classes, but I'm also a Sandbox proponent. It's just one of the features that I think is more important than choice.

    I think classes could be forced in a more sandbox way. Skill caps and limits, choices between skills where a class choice must be made and the like. For example you could make a choice that if you take this healing skill you can't take a 2h sword skill. You might still be able to take a 1h sword skill or archery skill. It's all fluid. That way if you wanted to be a healer you'd almost have to take a branch that led to healing skills over combat skills. Hybrids would then be players that decided they'd rather have this one skill over a certain healer skill, so they'd be less a healer, but maybe better overall, or in certain situations.

    That gets complicated, but there's choices that make classes more sand. Straight up classes is not sand though.

    Exactly.

    You could remove the premade classes from a game, but if the skill trees are properly set up, the end result should be a class proper anyway.  If they aren't, you will always end up with 2 or 3 builds (1 if your Darkfall) that everyone chooses, and the game ends up sucking for all kinds of other reasons.


  • Gallus85Gallus85 Winter Park, FLPosts: 1,092Member
    Originally posted by thenetavenge

    Are classes a sandbox feature... Maybe.

     

    If you look at previous sandbox style games, several had classes.  The 'open/sandbox' nature was preserved as the character was not locked to any of these classes and they could be mixed to create hybrid classes.

     

    SWG is a good example, it technically had classes; however, users were not locked into the classes, and could pick a mix of trees from several of the classes.  So you could have a Master Swordsman with some points in Fencer, some in Medic, some in artisan, etc.

     

    There are games with no defined class trees, and are just a mix of skills.  However I have seen class-less games that are far from offering a sandbox experience as the skill choices are too limited or require a linear choice in the skill systems.

     

    Based on SWG, as long as you aren't locked to a 'class' for your character, then they can work in a sandbox rather well.

     

    My two cents.

    The term sandbox has nothing to do with the class system.

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  • bcbullybcbully Westland, MIPosts: 8,272Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by azzamasin

    When I think of sandbox I think of total player freedom and choice.  With the recent speculation that EQN will feature classes does this really fit into a Sandbox mentality?

     

    I am hoping that classes are nothing but a starting point and that there is "a lot" of freedom within the class structure and that it becomes possible that no 2 classes will be the same.

    I with you. i hope they don't show us a game, then go through this massive redefining crap. "These are not 31 point talent trees, they are EVOLUTION LADDERS!." 

     

    SOE delivered with Planetside 2. It was what they said it was. This is part of the reason I'm optimistic.

  • xxxxxx1xxxxxx1 San Antonio, TXPosts: 91Member
    Originally posted by zymurgeist
    Sandboxes have nonlinear gameplay. There is no such thing as a "sandbox feature" just varying levels of nonlinearity.

    I agree. It's a very simple concept between sandbox and theme park. It's all about nonlinear and linear gameplay in MMO design. 

  • JustsomenoobJustsomenoob lexington, KYPosts: 871Member

    While I don't think a sandbox game requires skill based progression vs classes, the skill based route does seem to lend itself to it better.

     

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