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Sandbox or Storyline?


Guest MojoPogo

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Guest MojoPogo

Given the rise in the amount of games offering sandbox free roaming environments, I was wondering, do you prefer a tight structured storyline, a la Dead Space, Half Life, or an open world......a la GTA, Crackdown?

 

Although i do like the ability to run around and do what i want, usually, i find after a while you do the same stuff all the time, and in the new GTA's case, i found the lack of the old humour a bit off-putting, im not taking anything away from it though, the production values are superb, and the first time you're given the choice to kill someone or let them live really does stay with you.

 

My favourite game of 2008 for that very reason was actually Dead Space, it arrived with minimal hype and frankly, has proved to be a sleeper classic, with elements of Event Horizon, Aliens, and The Thing in it, its just sooo good. It seems with the likes of Prototype, Infamous coming along, publishers are continuing down the open route, but i personally hope that games with a tight narrative continue to be produced to as high a standard as Dead Space (high hopes for Killzone 2 and FEAR 2).

 

What do you guys (and girls, and Darkie) think?

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Guest Chriscare
I much prefer a sandbox style game where I can just do what I want and make my own fun. I rarely have the time to be able to just sit and play a game with a 20+ hour story, I like to just play for as long as I want when I want.
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Guest Anime Otaku
Both, From GTA 3 onward and Saints Row show that both can happen together. Crackdown was fun too but I guess it could have done with a tighter story instead of being basically one cut scene at the start and one at the end.
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Guest Chriscare

In all fairness though, i probably wouldn't mind the GTA story if you could save the game whenever. It's so frustrating doing the same pointless easy but boring driving part of a mission, when you've already done 100's of times.

 

I don't get why games companies think they should be allowed to waste peoples time so much.

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I've always preferred a game with a strong narrative running through it. Resident Evil, Silent Hill, GTA (which has free-roaming, but it's the story that keeps me playing), Stranglehold, Metal Gear Solid 1-4, etc, are the type of games I enjoy the most.
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Guest Al Stevens

I dont mind sandbox games just as long as they have something to keep you interested. I mean for myself my main problem with Midnight club was baring a opening FMV all it was go there and race, go here and race, find this person and race. I think that's why I enjoy Need for Speed:Undercover more, Yes it has the moments of going to race and all that but there is a story which keeps you going.

 

But on the other side I can see why people might get put off story driven game's. They want to explore the world and not being dictated where to go.

 

However I feel the story driven games are a lot stronger due to the developing character arch's and in some cases more twists and turns than a F1 track

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While I do enjoy both, I however prefer a structured storyline. The Half-Life series is my favourite, with Half-Life 2 being the best game I've ever played and that'#s mostly down to the story.

 

Though, I do also enjoy doing the sandbox mode, Galactic Conquest, on Star Wars: Empire At War. I guess it just really depends what game I'm playing.

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Guest DarkMatchJobber
My favourite thing about the GTA games is that you are not restricted or forced to move onto another area,never to play the previous one until you restart the game.
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Guest Evil Monkey
I find that a lot of the stuff you can do in sandbox games bore me very easily. I like open play, but not to the extent that you are wandering round a lot of the time ala GTA etc. I like a good story line, with some free roaming available - ie multiple routes to the same destination.
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Guest Jaycey Baby
I suppose the ideal situation would be to have a sandbox game that's as tightly scripted as a corridor shooter, with the option to go off and explore anytime you want, as long as the routes off the beaten track are as interesting as those on it. That would take a huge amount of time and effort for a developer, though.
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