If you’re trying to decide which of the two major metaverse games to get into, you’re likely wondering which one is better: Decentraland or Sandbox? While they both have a lot to offer users, there are some key differences between the two that may make one more appealing to you than the other. In this article, we’ll compare and contrast Decentraland vs Sandbox, so you can make an informed decision about which game is right for you.
What is the Metaverse?
The term Metaverse was first coined in 1992 by science fiction novelist Leil Stepheson in his book Snow Crash. At the time, Stepheson used the word to refer to a virtual world that the book’s protagonist needed to access to save the populace from the effects of a deadly drug called snow crash.
Although the story has bits and pieces of fiction embedded in culture, history, and computer science, it is a rough embodiment of what the Metaverse is.
The modern-day Meteverse came into existence almost 20 years after Stephenson’s book. As digital coins like Bitcoin and Ethereum grew increasingly popular, developers began to explore the possibilities of creating real-life experiences on blockchain technology.
With this, multiple elements of the Metaverse sprung to life. From self-sustaining virtual economies to non-fungible tokens like avatars, digital land, art, music, and many other life experiences found a parallel digital equivalent.
What is Decentraland?
Decentraland is one of the most elaborate concepts of the Metaverse to date. This virtual gaming destination is the embodiment of life in the digital realm. The game, which launched in 2017, is the work of Esteban Ordano and Ariel Meilich. It is also one of the first metaverse games to gain global stardom.
Gameplay on Decentraland begins with the existence of 90,601 digital parcels of land measuring 52 by 52 feet. These plots of land are further categorized into four sections, private land parcels, district lands, roads, and plazas. District lands are the lands available for Decentraland players to purchase, while the game reserves private lands. On the other hand, Plazas are more like central parks, displaying the different glorious themes of the game for new players; however, they are not for sale.
To play the game, you need to buy or rent a plot of land. On this plot, you can create your virtual world experience and share it with others in the game. The number and nature of the experiences you can create on Decentraland are only limited to your imagination. From concerts to tournaments, art, construction, business, and trade, you can make your world in this Metaverse and earn from people engaging in it.
- Transforms real-life situations into the immersive in-game experience
- Allows players to earn from the experiences or property they create
- Encourages creativity
Pros and Cons
Decentraland is a game for players looking for unique gameplay with a dash of extravagance. This game allows players a string of never-ending and ever-vibrant gaming experiences. It also allows them to be innovative and create impressive NFTs that they monetize.
On the flip side, though, Decentraland is an extremely expensive game to begin playing. The cost of land, which is a requirement for the game, is very high. Additionally, some players complain that the game’s terrain is too similar and that there is little in-game player interaction.
What is Sandbox?
The Sandbox is another virtual reality game that gives us a close semblance of what the Metaverse is all about. When its creators, Pixowl, launched the game in 2011, they aimed to help people understand blockchain-related concepts through virtual gaming.
However, over time, The Sandbox has morphed into one of the best NFT games where creatives gather to create voxel assets and mind-blowing, player-generated gaming experiences. At the same time, the game has maintained its initial intention to help people explore blockchain by embedding the concept of digital property ownership at its core.
To play The Sandbox, you must first purchase or rent one of the available 123,840 pieces of Sandbox Land. However, this is not all the land available. In this Metaverse, there are 166,464 plots of land, 10% of which are reserved for hosting special occasions on the game, and 16% of others are held as reserve assets by the game’s creators and partners.
Once players have land, The Sandbox allows them to create a range of digital assets and virtual reality experiences. The assets created in the game are known as voxel assets. Voxel is a blend of the words volume and pixel, which refers to 3D pixel NFTs. The Sandbox gamers can monetize these assets by trading them or by charging people for participating in the experiences they create.
- Multilayer game
- Allows players to create monetize and Voxel assets
- Supports virtual events and social experiences
Pros and Cons
The Sandbox is an impressive multiplayer game. This metaverse game encourages limitless creativity, allowing players to create voxel assets and gaming experiences that extend as far as their imagination allows. The game also boasts an active player community with impressive community engagement. However, the game’s most outstanding trait is its accessibility.
As a metaverse game, The Sandbox allows players to access the game without manually creating crypto wallets or signing in to crypto exchanges. Land in the game also costs significantly less than in a game like Decentraland, lowering the barrier of entry for many new gamers.
However, The Sandbox has a significant downside: its native token, SAND, has little to no use outside the game. This means despite investing heavily in the game, players cannot trade the coin on other exchanges and can only use it to buy or sell items in the game.
Decentraland vs. The Sandbox: What’s The Difference?
As Metaverse games, Decentraland and The Sandbox are pretty similar. Both games help people create virtual experiences from their imagination or real-life situations. However, the games also have stark differences when it comes to various features. So, let’s explore the key differences between Decentraland and The Sandbox.
Gameplay is the overall structure for how a given game ought to be played. This feature characterizes the missions in the game, player interactions, in-game assets, and experiences.
Decentraland’s gameplay is open-ended kind of gameplay. This means there can be multiple experiences since every player has a chance to create their own in-game experience. This makes the game evergreen, with creativity limited only by player imagination.
However, what stands out the most about Decentrand’s gameplay is how grand some of its experiences are. For instance, In late October, Decentraland hosted the Metaverse Festival with a line-up of top celebrities like Paris Hilton, Deadmau5, and Flume, and 50,000 attendees. The project has also partnered with Tennis Australia as the host of a virtual open Tennis event amongst many other upcoming mega festivals.
The Sandbox’s gameplay is also a unique experience full of imagination. However, it cannot match Decentraland’s thrilling gameplay. Despite having player-generated experience, The Sandbox doesn’t go all out to create wildly hyped and high-status events like Decentraland. For this reason, it ranks lower on gameplay.
Best game for gameplay: Decentraland
Experiencing the Metaverse through games like Decentraland and The Sandbox is thrilling. However, most players get on these games for the financial gains they bring. That is why a game’s monetization aspect is critical.
On Decentraland, the easiest way to make money is to buy land and flip it on the NFT marketplace for profit. Players can also rent their land to other players and collect recurring income. The only downside with Decentraland is the cost of land on the game. Among the cheapest plots can cost at least $3000. This makes it very hard to find ready buyers for Decentraland land NFTs.
The Sandbox also has a similar way of making money. Players either Sandbox Land NFTs or flip them. However, it also offers a marketplace for voxel assets created in the game. Players can also trade these assets for profit. The best part about The Sandbox is that its NFTs aren’t as costly. This makes monetizing the game easier than it is on Decentraland.
Best game for monetization: The Sandbox
Accessibility for a metaverse game refers to how easy it is for players to sign up for the game and the range of devices it supports. A game that is easier to sign into a game and that has greater device compatibility ranks highly for accessibility.
Decentraland is easily accessible. To begin playing the game, you only need a wallet that supports exchanges like Coinbase or Huobi Global, where you can buy MANA, Decentraland’s native token. With this, you can proceed to buy MANA, create an account on the game, buy or rent land and begin playing. For devices, the game is accessible on PC, Mac, iOS, and Android.
The Sandbox is easier to access than Decentraland. On The Sandbox, you can sign in using just a Google email, and the platform will create a wallet for you under the same email address. Additionally, you can access the game on PC, Mac, iOS, and Android. Overall, The Sandbox is easier to set up, making it more accessible than Decentraland.
Best game for accessibility: The Sandbox
What Should I Play: The Sandbox or Decentraland?
Both The Sandbox and Decentraland are captivating multiverse games. However, each has its pros and cons. For instance, Decentraland has a more fun and lively gameplay, but it costs so much to start playing the game. On the other hand, The Sandbox is affordable and easily accessible, but it may not be as fun. At the end of the day, the best choice is what you find comfortable and exciting.