The Sandbox


  • Currently 4.3/5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Rating: 4.3/5 (553 votes)
Comments (6) | Views (7,164)

The Sandbox

JohnBThe Sandbox is a creative elemental puzzle game for iOS by Pixowl. It mixes puzzles and challenges with good old fashioned elemental interactions, exactly the kind you would find in classic browser games like Sand Sand Sand or Powder Game 7. Guiding the all-powerful element dropping utility that is your finger, you can mix dozens of unique elements to create fantastic reactions, functioning machines, crazy Rube Goldberg-like devices, or just paint pretty pictures on your screen. There's plenty of room for creativity, but also a fair amount of thoughtful challenge as well!

The SandboxIn The Sandbox, you play a god-like character with the power to paint with the elements. By dragging your finger across the screen, you can drop stones, bits of earth, water, even create batteries, lava, heating elements, and more. Not only that, you can also toy with the lighting, weather, and temperature settings, creating conditions ripe for just about anything your brain can cook up.

Starting with the game's story mode, you'll gradually unlock new elements as you progress through a series of challenges. They're pretty simple puzzles to start with, but as you progress, they get more and more intricate and require actual thought to complete. Hints are always available, so if you get stuck, you can easily get un-stuck! You earn new elements by completing challenges, but in order to actually use them, you'll have to spend mana points to unlock them.

After capping off some of the two dozen story mode levels, you can head over to free mode where you get to play with the elements however you see fit. There are challenges to unlock here as well, but the real focus is just messing about with an empty environment, old school style. Once you have the full arsenal of elements and climate controls at your disposal, you can settle down and do some real creating.

The SandboxAnalysis: The Sandbox does a great job translating the intricate, elemental reaction-heavy environment seasoned browser gamers have been toying around with for years to modern devices for modern gamers. It isn't quite as stark as games like Hell of Sand, though, and even in free mode you always get the feeling there's more going on than just a blank screen and your penchant for mucking about with elements. In other words, The Sandbox has a hidden motive, and while most of that is simply the interface and the puzzle challenges you can complete, another portion is the broken in-app purchasing system.

The Sandbox may say it's free on the surface, but it gives you ample opportunity to spend real cash, usually to purchase mana points so you can unlock necessary elements. In fact, it's almost required after a dozen or so levels, as the mana you earn over the course of the game doesn't add up to what you need to unlock everything. Many players insist you can get by without dropping real cash, you just have to be extra creative. That may be the case, but The Sandbox feels like it's true purpose is to be a mobile elements/extras shop, not a creative sandbox. The developers crossed that delicate line between in-app purchases for fun, and in-app purchases as an in-your-face annoyance. Not enough to ruin the game, but enough to make you raise an eyebrow.

Apart from its awkward IAP takeover, The Sandbox does play like a well-tuned game of elemental shenanigans. You can even use it as a pixel art creation kit! The visuals have a distinct style that looks great no matter what you've got burning/melting/boiling. In some ways, it's an evolved modern version of classic browser-based sandbox webtoys, and for that alone, it's worth giving a shot!

Play The Sandbox (browser)

NOTE: This game was played and reviewed on the iPod Touch. Game was available in the North American market at the time of publication, but may not be available in other territories. Please see individual app market pages for purchasing info.

6 Comments

Jim Gamma May 31, 2012 4:49 PM

I think some of the achievements are broken - even after buying the all elements pack I don't have the get all elements achievement. (And yes, I have bought them in the mana store.) Similarly I've used all 30 elements (in the same level even) and haven't got that one either.

Reply

Is this not the game portrayed in the pictures above or is it just me? I get a sandbox game instead of what appears to be a sandbox-style platform game.

Reply
MoziCocosi August 24, 2012 1:32 AM

Omg I cant believe this game actually got posted!! I submited it :3 Thanks guys!!

Reply

Um, when I follow the link, I get what appears to be another in the series of very sparse pixel sand games, rather than the nicely graphic game in the pictures.

Reply

This is missing the "android" tag

Reply

^ Scroll Up | Homepage >

Leave a comment [top of page]

    Please consider creating a Casual Gameplay account if you're a regular visitor here, as it will allow us to create an even better experience for you. Sign-up here!
  • PLEASE UNDERSTAND SITE POLICIES BEFORE POSTING COMMENTS
  • You may use limited HTML tags for style:
    (a href, b, br/, strong, em, ul, ol, li, code, spoiler)
    HTML tags begin with a less-than sign: < and end with a greater-than sign: >. Always. No exceptions.
  • To post spoilers, please use spoiler tags: <spoiler> example </spoiler>
    If you need help understanding spoiler tags, read the spoiler help.
  • Please Preview your comment before posting, especially when using spoilers!
  • No link dropping, no domains as names; do not spam, and do not advertise! (rel="nofollow" in use)
819 Views
4 Comments
Coloruid> starchild You've got yourself some sets of squares and they are all different colours. What you have to do is paint them so that they are monochrome in the end. Sounds easy? Then try doing it in a limited number of moves and while they're all shaking like crazy.  ...
Aveyond 4: Shadow of the Mist> Dora Boyle wanted to rule the world... but that didn't pan out so well, and three years later he's sulking in a town filled with other retired villains. But when a strange mist threatens the world (and his dog), he may have to become a hero... whether he likes it or not. A fabulously fun and cheeky indie RPG with plenty of humour and gameplay.  ...
2,147 Views
11 Comments
Room 12> Dora Ichima's got you trapped in a quaint little room. But to escape, you'll have to learn that there's more than meets the eye. You'll have to be clever and observant... and, unfortunately, do a little bit of pixel hunting.  ...
1,242 Views
1 Comment
Deep Underground> Lori.h When some researchers get lost in large cave it's up to you to fly in and get them out safely, as well as collect those sweet sweet gold coins and make your mark on this cavern that no one will forget any time soon in this action-packed game.  ...

Support Us

Jayisgames is on Patreon

Recent Comments

 

Display 5 more comments
Limit to the last 5 comments

Casual game of the week

Mystery Trackers: Paxton Creek Avenger

Your Favorite Games edit

add
Save links to your favorite games here. Use the Favorites editor.

Monthly Archives

Legal notice

All games mentioned or hosted and images appearing on JayIsGames are Copyright their respective owner(s).

All other content is Copyright ©2003-2016 JayIsGames.com. All Rights Reserved.


Visit our great partner: maxcdn!