How to Play The Sandbox – A Beginner’s Guide

07/01/2022By: L, Laura

Gaming and crypto are increasingly getting mixed up with terms like “metaverse” and “play-to-earn.” If you want to explore this new world but don’t know where to start, the answer may be a crypto game called The Sandbox. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to explore and play in The Sandbox metaverse.


First Step Before Getting Started in The Sandbox

First, go to The Sandbox site on any browser. As usual with blockchain projects online, the first thing you’ll be asked to do when you enter is to connect a crypto wallet. If you don’t have one, don’t worry: they are easy and free to create.


You don’t necessarily need to have any crypto tokens in your wallet to get started on The Sandbox. You just need a safe place ready to receive the tokens you might earn.


Next, you have to supply an email address and choose a nickname.


You’ll be prompted to create an avatar and customize different body parts: hair, top, legwear, shoes, etc. You can look very different than you do in real life with blue or green skin or try to make an avatar that looks something like you. The biggest problem you’ll face at this step is indecisiveness, given there are so many choices.


Now that you have an avatar, you’ll find The Sandbox world is structured according to a map, for ease of navigation. You can see all the plots of digital land in the world and click whichever interests you. This geographic style of presentation of projects-within-the-project is pretty standard for metaverse games.


If you run your cursor over the map, you’ll see that a lot of the things there are “experiences,” typically games with levels to be completed. They’re designed by your fellow players, not by the developers behind the environment itself. You’re likely to see pop-up boxes announcing you have completed “0/15 quests.” If you want, you can just jump straight into one of the quests. Before you’ll be able to, you’ll be asked to download The Sandbox client software to do so which is a free and quick process.


Naturally, you can start doing more things faster if you invest some of your own money. For instance, you can start designing your own game. But don’t worry, if you are not comfortable or ready, you can just start playing without investing any money. It’s best to explore and research as much as you need to understand the experience and if it’s worth your investment.


The Sandbox graphics have been compared to the globally popular game Minecraft, given its boxy aesthetic. Those cubic components of the world are called “voxels.”


What Exactly Is Sandbox And How It Works

The Sandbox is an open-world online multiplayer game, where players compete to earn non-fungible tokens (NFTs). It’s part of a breed of online games that have gained in popularity in tandem with the hype around NFTs. Another is Decentraland.


The Sandbox has actually been around for much longer than the NFT boom – they’ve been putting out games for mobile devices since 2011, with no blockchain element at all. It was only in 2018 that the company pivoted towards blockchain.


The substantial advance of The Sandbox’s move to the blockchain is that players can trade the things they build in the game and make their ownership verifiable outside the game environment. You don’t need the developers to say you own your Sandbox creations. It is recorded indelibly in the blockchain.


The project’s utility token is SAND. You’ll need it to buy anything else. It was originally made on the Ethereum network but began transitioning to Polygon in 2021, along with the whole Sandbox NFT ecosystem. The project cited environmental reasons for the switch, saying it could reduce its carbon footprint.


SAND is also used for staking on The Sandbox network on Polygon, meaning that holders of the token can participate in verifying transactions on the network if they deposit their tokens temporarily. They are rewarded for doing so with more SAND tokens. As of May 2022, The Sandbox said almost $100 million in value of SAND tokens were locked in staking.


After SAND, you’ll want to think about LAND, which is required in order to build anything within the game. There is a fixed supply of LAND tokens: 166,464. That means, in theory, if user numbers and public interest in the game continue to grow then the value of those LAND tokens should increase.


Once you have LAND, you can get creative. For one thing, you can make your own games-within-the-game using freely downloadable Game Maker software. If you want, you can do this in cooperation with other players. You can also create visual artworks using VoxEdit, software which describes itself as “the leading software that allows you to create, rig and animate your own voxel-based NFTs.”


The items that you create this way are given blockchain tokens called ASSETs, this makes them tradable and they can be turned into NFTs. These tokens can have other tokens called GEMs and CATALYSTs attached to them, affecting their value. But this is something you can delve into once you’ve gotten started – you may not be interested in this aspect of The Sandbox at all.


The final thing to note about LAND is that you can also rent your LAND out to other users. This means you can earn a passive income from it while others get a chance to be the creative ones.


One last thing: You don’t need a lot of technical knowledge to do any of the above. The software used by The Sandbox should be available to hobbyists, so don’t hesitate to design video games or create NFT sounds if they are beyond your skill level. The best way to find out is to explore and play around with the environment and see what else you want to try. You may find it easier than you expected.