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  The ultimate sandbox game  (Read 1596 times)
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Offline Spacebeans
« Posted 2014-06-25 00:37:26 »

I was planning on going back to my old sandbox game 'Poss-Engine' and I was thinking of getting some feedback from people of what they really want from sandbox games. Basically, the game doesn't have many mechanics except for building, and movement, but there are allot of tools to create your own style of gameplay, and make litterally whatever you want. I was also thinking of making a 'entity editor' for making custom world, and GUI entities to play around with. And in doing so, making a physics engine to go with it. Also a child system so you can attach a attribute to a base. Like wings on a pig. (Wings being an attribute, and pig being a base). This would make it easy for the base to take parameters like AI, movement, and speed from an attribute. So anything can fly. I was also thinking of putting in a item system, so you can make custom projectile entities come from a weapon, or some sort. Maybe a flail, for a Mid evil (Probably spelt that wrong) battle map. Also, there would be a 'player' AI that could be attached to any entity. It would take a paremeter of the players name. So you could right-click on something, choose the AI menu and select 'set player' and have that entity and its AI react to input from player controls.

I have a specific art style picked out, so the colors would look bright, and morning-ish. This would hopefully give the player a sense of creativity and happiness (I'm not an art expert. But I know a bit) . JBox 2D could be used in allot of places too. But I have no idea on how to implement it.

TL;DR: I want to make the ultimate sandbox game to do whatever the hell you want, but how do I do it? (Theory above)
Offline kingroka123

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« Reply #1 - Posted 2014-06-25 01:14:03 »

To make the ultimate sandbox, I would just create a simulation of the entire universe and all of it's elements and compounds then wait for life to form on some planet in a few billion years and then let the player play god. Of course this isn't possible now but give it no more than 50 years and I'm sure something close will come out.  Pointing

Seriously, that would be amazing but in your case I think an important feature of sandbox games is the lack of restraints. If you want an ultimate sandbox game, just try and destroy barriers between the player and the world. Another important feature is the organic and real feel of sandbox games. For example,the thrusters of a space ship actually put out force instead of just changing a variable or a ball rolls down a slope and knocks over a series of dominoes. Stuff like that

Offline HeroesGraveDev

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« Reply #2 - Posted 2014-06-25 05:49:02 »

A true sandbox is where the player never runs out of things to do.

This either requires extreme low-level mechanics (currently too costly) or randomly generated mechanics (not reliable enough). Anything else would require the developer to create mechanics faster than the player could explore them.

Personally, I think people need to take a break from making sandbox games. Each new one adds about one new feature, and the rest has all been done before. For anything awesome to come out, it needs to be fresh.

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Offline Coldstream24
« Reply #3 - Posted 2014-06-25 10:04:09 »

I agree. I feel like there are too many people trying to emulate other peoples' success without actually innovating beyond a couple of things here and there just so that they can say, "hey, my game is different - early access beta is only $30!".

Yes, I am that same incredibly famous Internet musician.
Offline Gibbo3771
« Reply #4 - Posted 2014-06-25 10:59:01 »

I agree. I feel like there are too many people trying to emulate other peoples' success without actually innovating beyond a couple of things here and there just so that they can say, "hey, my game is different - early access beta is only $30!".

I will go ahead and build on this with my opinion of a game that does just that.

Starbound, it is clearly inspired by Terraria. However the only thing different from Terraria is the block placing mechanics and the whole travel around planets thing.

Sure it is cool that it is proceduraly generated and I can respect the effort that goes into such code, at the end of the day it is just a standard platform game with Terraria style building and average combat. I actually find the combat to be terribly linear and boring.

The space travel and exploration does not make it "innovative" over previous successes.

"This code works flawlessly first time and exactly how I wanted it"
Said no programmer ever
Offline Drenius
« Reply #5 - Posted 2014-06-25 13:15:57 »

Isn't the fact that the users will be able to make it their own game (without modding) innovative itself?
Offline Spacebeans
« Reply #6 - Posted 2014-06-25 14:22:22 »

Isn't the fact that the users will be able to make it their own game (without modding) innovative itself?

Yeah, the only thing I planned to for the players through code, was the AI. But even then, the AIs are going to be super super easy. I wanted to have it so anyone could make whatever block, item or entity they want in-game. Then export it into a XML file containing resources for things like, its children, and the entities properties. So the player could share their entities thought the internet.
Offline Riven
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« Reply #7 - Posted 2014-07-01 17:52:16 »

What you're describing is a game engine, not a game.

For a chance to succeed, you have to narrow your scope.

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Offline Spacebeans
« Reply #8 - Posted 2014-07-01 20:26:46 »

I wanted it to have the functionality of a game engine, and the feel / user friendliness of a game.
Offline BurntPizza
« Reply #9 - Posted 2014-07-01 20:40:26 »

Problem is, games are specialized to an extent towards a certain gameplay. To be able to do anything, a game engine has to be the game-equivalent of "Turing complete" and now we're already getting theoretical and not user-friendly  Tongue

You'll almost certainly have to compromise somewhere, as even the best "game makers" are not completely open-ended or capable, as well as the best/most open-ended of games like Minecraft, Conway's Game of Life, etc, where the player creates the high-level content out of a low-level system of rules.

I'd look into the encouragement/creation of emergent gameplay, which sounds like what you would want.
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Offline AppleSauce
« Reply #10 - Posted 2014-07-01 20:48:56 »

What I would like to see is a remake of the universe as many have said, but make it more realistic than other sandboxes. Having a rocket that uses JBox2D to fly to other planets where you get to choose what is on the planets. Objectives in the game would be to be creative and make a healthy community. Make it a challenge to survive with how many people should reproduce. Having you're own character that can be any shape and size would be cool. A role play could be formed. Long Story short make every other game into one.

EDIT: Assuming you plan on using any 3D
Offline opiop65

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« Reply #11 - Posted 2014-07-01 20:57:57 »

Just as a side not,  JBox2D is only for 2D games... Hence the 2D in the name. And you don't need any sort of physics library, he can do it himself.

Offline BurntPizza
« Reply #12 - Posted 2014-07-01 20:59:41 »

And you don't need any sort of physics library, he can do it himself.

If he's a masochist.
Offline Spacebeans
« Reply #13 - Posted 2014-07-01 21:02:03 »

Yeah, its going to be in 2D, because the building mechanic will work better, you could draw out buildings, and easily click on entities to change there properties. Also, it would be so cool to use your mouse as a 'god hand' and throw a flying-pig-bomb at a building Smiley

@opiop65 Check your jump button email Wink

edit:

If he's a masochist.

Bookmarked so I can give a medal later, won't let me repeat the karma action Smiley
Offline BurntPizza
« Reply #14 - Posted 2014-07-01 21:03:24 »

So G-mod2D.
Offline Spacebeans
« Reply #15 - Posted 2014-07-01 21:11:50 »

So G-mod2D.

Kinda, but the assets are drawn/built in-game. (The AI is done through code though)
Offline ags1

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« Reply #16 - Posted 2014-07-01 21:25:09 »

Second Life?

Offline Spacebeans
« Reply #17 - Posted 2014-07-01 21:40:34 »

Second Life?

Dear god nothing like second life.
Offline ags1

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Medals: 62
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Make code not war!


« Reply #18 - Posted 2014-07-01 21:46:40 »

My point is... if you give players that much freedom, the only thing they can create is Second Life. Second Life proves this.

If you want the game to be creative and imaginative, you must impose this on your players :-)

Offline AppleSauce
« Reply #19 - Posted 2014-07-01 21:54:07 »

That Image disgusts me.  Cranky
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