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A Sandbox From Scratch

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I'm a newbie here and I came across this site in desperate need of help. I am a lover of Sandbox games like: GTA, Sly Cooper, inFAMOUS, ect. You can probably guess that I would want to make one. However, RAGE from Rockstar Games isn't avaliable, and Platinum Arts Sandbox doesn't have exactly what I want. So, what I've been trying to do is make a game engine, which I've heard and know that it's incredibly difficult and time-conssuming which are things I'm willing to fight through. The only question is, where EXACTLY do I start. I picked up an article on the web and the guy talked about FMOD and SDL's and SDK's. I don't know exactly what those are, except the FMOD is an interactive sound editor. I got those components(not sure which ones of the sites he gave was even the right ones) and then the guy just lost me. So what I'm trying to get from you guys are what are some specific steps to making a sandbox game engine that I'll understand, what are SDL's and SDK's, what are some good places on the web that can guide me through this process, and if I can take parts of another game engine like PA Sandbox,(what language will I use and where can I get it(for free), how would I modify it and what will I need to change and make. Remember that this is a Sandbox game engine ONLY alomst exactly like GTA or inFAMOUS. I tried to be as specific as I could unlike some of the other game engine topics on here, so I hope you would understand what I'm trying to do here. Thank! :)

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Most engines available can be used to make sandbox games; the thing that really makes a game a "sandbox" game is all the stuff. It wouldn't take teams of 200 people working on one game if one person could do it by himself easily. I recommend picking up Game Maker or a similar simple engine to understand the basics of basics of game logic and scripting, and while you're at it grab a few books like Beginning OpenGL Game Programming and Beginning C++ Through Game Programming, and then if you're still interested, move on up to Unity or Unreal DK. Like I said, using any of the above you could make a sandbox game (just look what Brian Provinciano did with an NES, back when Retro City Rampage was still Grand Theftendo), it's really just a matter of what you do with the tools. Which is a lot of work.

As for the acronyms, well, there are ways to find out.

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I really wished I wouldn't advertise right now but you mention Platinum Arts so I will
There is an engine In development(not working yet) called Cube Create which is the successor to Syntensity(which still works but not in active development) which both are based on cube2 engine(same as Platinum arts) which have the awesome realtime map editing and both enhance it with scripting capabilities:
CubeCreate-lua(which is why its broken)
Syntensity-javascript
So if you interested you can go on the irc channel #cubecreate on freenode or on the forums http://forum.cubecreate.com/

-End of shameless advertising-

I do recommended getting an engine and work with that then creating your own,which if you don't want to know the inner working of an engine there is no point
Also note that sandbox game is more about how you design the game rather then what engine you use,other then obvious engine limitations,which you can get around them like Postal 2 did

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The first two
posts in this
thread are
quite hard to
read as for
the extremely
vast amount
of no
paragraphs.
Possibly it
would help to
introduce a
handful of
them in your
posts.

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Quote:
Original post by Portugal Stew
The irony of your reply is overwhelming. I'll throw that in the wind and move on.



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Quote:
Original post by parkour
what are some specific steps to making a sandbox game engine

This is not a Game Design topic. Moved to For Beginners. Par, you should read the FAQs. Scroll up and click "View Forum FAQ."

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@parkour: Are you just a beginner to game development specifically? Or to programming in general? (In other words, do you have any programming experience? And if so, what languages?)

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So the game engines I currently have besides PA Sandbox is Blender 3D and Unity 3DBasic.Are there some tutorials about making a sandbox game from that? If so, could u please provide the link? And are there any pointers about making a SB gamecoming from you all? Thanks for the help!

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Quote:
Original post by jyk
@parkour: Are you just a beginner to game development specifically? Or to programming in general? (In other words, do you have any programming experience? And if so, what languages?)



I have no exsperience with programing. However I have been trying a little Java with Unity. I'm still going to pick up a few books on c++.

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You'll need I would think to learn a language first. I started with C++ but that's only because I was made aware of it's presence some years ago and I did some scripting for Operation Flashpoint which is close to C++ to make a special camera function for the game engine which it did not have as a default tool.

I've heard it's better to go Java then C++. I'm going C++ then Java ;o) Anyway too late to turn back now.

I thought about all this sandbox stuff but given the size of the team I will have will be lucky if it ever gets beyond a small handful of people so I opted to look at making a military style MMO. An MMO? That's crazy big surely! Not really when you consider that once you have your engine functioning properly on the client's side you can bypass all those complicated things like storyline, plot, detailed interaction with NPC's, quests and such like. These things might sound trivial until you look at games even as old as Baldur's Gate 2 - Shadows Of Amn. Nothing in this world could ever inspire me to even think of creating something like that on my own, the plot and NPC interactions are just too complex.

The only things I have to worry about once I have an engine nailed down are:

1)Making a reasonably sized world which is not overly bland given its size.

2)Writing networking code - a BIG job.

3)Writing server code - an ENORMOUS job.

4)Putting suitable vehicles/units in the game. All these will be bought I won't make any of it save for some tiny tweaks. Sheesh I might even pay someone else to do the animations, anything to reduce workload in areas where I'm not technically competent/naturally skilled. There also won't be too many of them.

Okay so still plenty of barriers but it's kind of like once it's done it's done, and I can see it all from 10,000ft even now. Writing a complex system of plot and NPC interaction possibilities would fill me with dread. You might want to think about something like that maybe I don't know.

Just some suggestions, take it or leave it.

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