The Sandbox is an Ethereum-based decentralized NFT gaming metaverse that enables non-tech savvy users to create, sell, use, and monetize their own virtual reality NFTs. The crypto metaverse uses its native token SAND to underpin the entirety of the in-game economy.
NFTs are changing how we collect art, build communities, earn, and play. Many NFT-based projects are evolving into full-blown metaverses, and The Sandbox is sitting front and center. The brainchild of Pixowl co-founders Arthur Madrid and Sebastien Borget, The Sandbox is unique from other crypto metaverse projects in that its user-generated content ecosystem makes contributing to the metaverse a simple and intuitive task for players without any coding skills.
The following guide explores The Sandbox project, its roadmap, how to play Sandbox, and the utility of the various tokens in the Sandbox ecosystem, including SAND.
The Sandbox ecosystem consists of three integrated products and services that facilitate user-generated content creation:
The building blocks of The Sandbox game are 3D pixels called voxels– this term isn’t native to The Sandbox project, it specifically refers to virtual reality development. In The Sandbox, players construct their game experiences using these lego-like pieces, using the free Sandbox VoxEdit tool. It works similarly to the other popular voxel editors, like the popular Magica Voxel.
You can get an idea of how to do basic things with Voxedit from Pandapops below.
Characters, items, or other in-game assets created in Voxedit are referred to as ASSETS. They can be turned into NFTs, which are ERC-1155 standard. This standard enables creators to mint any number of copies of the same ASSET. This way, they can create a unique NFT that is ERC-721 standard, and at the same time, make multiple copies of it within the same smart contract.
The project introduces two tokens related to ASSETs: GEMs and CATALYSTs. Both are fungible ERC-20 tokens. GEMs are used to provide ASSET attributes; the more attributes an asset has, the more valuable it is. One GEM can give 25 attribute points to an ASSET.
CATALYSTs define assets’ tier and scarcity. They have four tiers as Common, Rare, Epic, Legendary. These tiers may have up to 25, 50, 75, and 100 attributes, respectively.
After creating the ASSET, GEMs and CATALYSTs can also be defined in Voxedit.
Players engage with the metaverse using their avatars. Technically speaking, a Sandbox Avatar is an ASSET that can be created in Voxedit.
Recently, the Sandbox introduced a new avatar tool that allows direct customization of avatars without using VoxEdit by mixing and matching different body parts and clothes.
It’s still in test mode, though.
Understanding the difference between asset creators and players in the Sandbox metaverse is essential. Only asset creators who the Creator Fund accepts can upload their ASSETS to the project’s Marketplace.
The Sandbox Marketplace essentially allows players to monetize the digital assets they created by selling them to other Sandbox players.
Before importing the ASSETS to the Marketplace, creators must upload them to the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS).
Players can buy ASSETS from these verified creators from the Marketplace to build game experiences.
The Sandbox isn’t just one single game; it consists of many standalone games, environments, and other experiences.
The team has left the universe open-ended for creators and players to ultimately build, own, and monetize the metaverse.
You can use the Game Maker to create 3D game experiences within the metaverse. No prior coding knowledge is required, so even inexperienced game designers can start building games.
Experiences you can create with the Game Maker range from action-adventure games to puzzles, from art galleries to homes and social hubs. These are just the starting points; users can also test other genres.
There are three important components you’ll use while creating experiences with the Game Maker:
You construct the actual topography of your experience using BLOCKS. One meter in the Sandbox metaverse is the equivalent of 32x32x32 voxel cubes.
Blocks can be solid or transparent, and they come with several variables. By combining variable types, it’s possible to create different surfaces, such as a body of water. You can create Custom BLOCKs in the VoxEdit program.
As explained above, ASSETs like trees, vehicles, buildings, etc., are created in VoxEdit and uploaded to the Marketplace by the creators. Once added to the library, a player can drag and drop the desired asset to the world they’re building in Game Maker.
You assign behavior to ASSETS, using Game Maker’s ready-to-use plug-and-play LOGIC bundles. For example, you can customize an object to be a collectible treasure.
You can download the Game Maker here.
You can create game experiences in the Game Maker for free, but to publish them and let other players participate, you’ll need a LAND.
LAND is a digital piece of real estate in the Sandbox metaverse. Each LAND is a unique non-fungible ERC-721 token.
If you’re interested in purchasing a LAND, first familiarize yourself with the entire landscape of the Sandbox Metaverse on the map. The official public LAND sales are also held on this webpage. The remaining LANDs will be offered in multiple public sales. The public sale dates are announced on the official community channels on Discord, Telegram, and Twitter.
LANDs from the previous public sales can be bought in the secondary market on OpenSea.
In total, 166,464 LANDs will be available for sale.
In the future, it’ll be possible to rent and borrow the LANDs. Further, players can merge adjacent LANDs into larger parcels called ESTATEs.
Can you play the Sandbox Game on the Oculus Quest 2? No, as of now, there isn’t support for the Sandbox on the Quest.
The SAND token (ERC-20) is the native utility token used in the Sandbox metaverse.
For example, to buy LANDs from public sales in-game, you’ll need to have SAND on your wallet. Game assets, Gems, and Catalysts must be all purchased from the Marketplace using SAND token. Asset designers can upload their creations to the Marketplace using SAND.
SAND is also a governance token. When the Sandbox DAO is launched, SAND holders will have the right to participate in the governance decisions, like feature prioritizations. SAND owners can vote themselves or delegate their voting rights to other players.
At the time of writing, SAND’s current market cap is more than $4.5B. There will be 3,000,000,000 SAND tokens in circulation. SAND can be purchased and sold on third-party cryptocurrency exchanges such as Gemini, Crypto.com, and Kraken, or on with ETH or DAI asset pairs on the Uniswap DEX,
The Sandbox team will occasionally host contests and events where users can gain SAND tokens by playing games in the metaverse. In the past, SAND was also distributed to the community via airdrops. In the future, Landowners will be able to stake SAND onto their LANDS to earn GEMs which they can then sell to asset creators.
*Not financial advice.
The Sandbox partnered with over 165 brands including big brands like The Walking Dead, Smurfs, and Atari. These partnerships take form as virtual concerts by Deadmau5 and Snoop Dogg and a Walking Dead game. The project has also raised $93 million so far and the team is dedicated to building out its suite of products and metaverse.
In 2022, some new metaverse features will be offered to LAND owners who have built excellent game experiences.
The Sandbox DAO is planned for Q2 2022.
The mobile version and new community tokens are in sight for Q4 2022.