The game term 'sandbox' means that the game is extremely non-linear and allows the player to do everything that comes into their head. For example, one can run in all directions, explore the world, complete quests in any order, and build or destroy something. There are no rules; only free choice. All this happens just like in a real nursery sandbox, which is why the games got this name.
What one can do in such a game?
Sandbox games are a genre of online games where the main features are the complete or partial configuration of items, the creation of lands, and the development of locations. In specialized games, you get the possibility to configure everything around you.
In games with this mode, the player can disable or ignore game objectives and tasks. This term is used to describe the mode or option of those games whose levels are unlimited in time but, at the same time, have a goal. Therefore, the term 'sandbox game' is not applicable to those games that have no limits in time and goals.
The sandbox mode is prominently seen in Life is Feudal. This and other games with a virtual environment that the player can explore are known as open-world games. In addition, an integral part of the sandbox is the generation of a new map at the start of a new game and full freedom of action.
Everything in this world is needed for something. A tree is not just a decoration: you can climb on it, and you can even cut it down so that the log can be used for some other purpose. Which one? Any! At least you can kill monsters with it or build a bridge. The local rules do not limit the gamer but give opportunities. That is why it is pleasant to return to the sandbox game – every time, you can discover something new.
Examples and varieties of sandbox games
For more than a decade, there has been such a thing in the MMO game genre as sandbox games. Sandbox MMORPG is a genre of online games where players have great opportunities to create their in-game content, dungeons, houses, things, etc. In fact, online projects with such a prefix mean games with almost full freedom of action.
Today, on the forums, you can often see how people put the name Sandbox on projects such as Lineage II and World of Warcraft. However, these games cannot create content from scratch or somehow change the world around them. The authors think out every piece in such virtual universes to the smallest detail, and users can interact with objects in a strictly established order.
In real games of this type, developers create a universe saturated with different items and give players tools to change the world around them (roughly speaking, they put a gamer in a sandbox and give them a bucket and a shovel in their hands). After that, the authors can only say do what you want, and we will look after you.
There are usually more than a hundred additional quests in the open world, and for each, the developers are not too lazy to come up with a separate plot, cut scenes, heroes, and unique situations. This is not to mention phased investigations that can stretch for half a game, as well as hunting, chariot racing, and all kinds of treasure hunts.
In a nutshell, sandbox games have long won a special place in the hearts of gamers, bringing variety to the gameplay.