What are the best sandbox games?
Determining the best sandbox games is tricky with so many different series crammed under one roof.
Simply put, sandbox games describe anything that gives players a lot of freedom and tools to do almost anything they want.
With that in mind, let's take a look at the best games that fit this definition and what makes them great sandbox games!
The 25 best sandbox games
When compiling this list, we took into account how much freedom each of these games offers players and ranked them accordingly.
In addition, many of the games we've selected span a variety of genres, as we've tried to find something for everyone!
Now without further ado, let's move on to our list of the 25 best sandbox games:
Factorio is a game that's been in Early Access for a long time, so it's incredibly polished and complex.
Possibly one of the best construction management games of all time, Factorio challenges players to build an industry on an alien planet.
While the main goal is to build a rocket to leave the planet you crashed on like a sandbox, you can decide to continue once the story is over.
This game contains both real-time strategy and survival elements and can be played alone or with friends.
It's very easy to lose hours trying to make your conveyors as efficient as possible and it's so satisfying to see your industry expand!
24.Fallout: New Vegas
Fallout: New Vegas is one of thembest post apocalyptic games ever, and it is often regarded as the best Fallout game.
Set in the post-apocalyptic world of the American West, New Vegas offers players a lot of freedom.
Seriously, the only characters that can't be killed are Yes Man and three kids. If you want to kill everyone else, you can.
The only reason Yes Man can't be killed is because he's a robot who keeps coming back to end the story.
That said, all of Mojave is available for you to work with as you see fit, and the possibilities are only limited to your imagination.
23.Cause 3 only
While the main storyline of Just Cause 3 revolves around Rico Rodriquez trying to rid his house of a dictator, that's not what makes this game fun.
The real selling point here is the huge open world and the freedom to do as much damage as you want with a variety of fun toys.
If you want to fly around with your grappling hook like you're a Spiderman, you can. You can also blow up cars and buildings!
Why is it so much fun to blow things up in a sandbox? We don't know, but it sure is a lot of fun!
Ab 2022 hoed Stardew Valleysold more than 20 million copies, And for good reason. It gives the players a lot of freedom of movement!
At the start of this game you only get a farm and a piece of land to do whatever you want on it.
There is no overarching goal to be achieved; You basically just live your life in a relaxed, laid back environment.
While you can start a thriving farm, you can also explore caves, mine, fish, collect shells or just hang out with NPCs.
Stardew Valley is actually the world's most stress-free game and we highly recommend you try it out for yourself!
21.Die Sims 4
The Sims is a classic sandbox franchise and this latest game in the series has been thriving since 2014.
In this game you can live any life you want, and even there isThe best career mods for Sims 4for more variety!
In this game you can build houses, raise families and basically play god while manipulating the lives of animated people.
With all the mods and in-game cheat codes you can download and use, there really is no limit to what you can do in this game.
Oh, and don't worry, we won't judge you for all the crazy ways you've tried to kill your poor Sims. They probably expected it anyway.
This is the ultimate action-adventure sandbox game that you can easily play for thousands of hours.
Terraria has almost everything you can think of, including painting, building, crafting, exploring, and fighting.
When you start out, you'll find yourself in a procedurally generated world with basic tools and it's up to you to survive and thrive.
Like Minecraft, Terraria is an absolute classic and there's even a large modding community that is always adding something.
If you are a fan of sandbox games, you should definitely try this one for yourself, even if you don't want to stop once you start playing!
19.Go to the Middle Ages
Going Medieval has quickly become one of thembest real simulation gamesfor fans of the Middle Ages.
This colony simulator has some of the best building mechanics of any sandbox simulation game and offers players a lot of freedom.
However, Going Medieval is not only about building a city, but also about taking care of the citizens who live there.
As the god of this world, you have to keep them alive and happy, because hunger and raider attacks are constant threats!
If you are up to the task of taking care of a medieval city full of people for you to transform or destroy, then this game is for you!
After Sim City lost popularity, Cities: Skylines took over the market and was very successful!
This is by far the best city building game out there and it really gives players free rein to build whatever they want!
Do you want to build a boat full of sewage around your city? You absolutely can! They can even evoke natural disasters!
Oh, and there are also a ton of mods that can give you basically any tool you want.
In Cities: Skylines, you can really be a benevolent god or an absolute monster to your citizens, and that's what we're all for.
17.Crusader kings 3
Crusader Kings 3 has become one of themost popular video games of all time, and it sure is a great sandbox!
Players can start this Medieval Age game in the year 867 or 1066 and choose to play with an almost endless number of characters.
In this game you can start almost anywhere in the world, even in small provinces like the Åland Islands between Finland and Sweden.
While the interface can be a little intimidating at first because there's so much you can do, once you get used to it, it's pretty straightforward.
What makes this game great is that no matter how small your starting location, you can dominate the world if you play your cards right.
Crusader Kings 3 is the ultimate sandbox where you can play for thousands of hours and still encounter something new!
16.The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt wonmore GOTY awards than anyone elseat the time of its release, and it's easy to see why!
Not only is this game great, it also has a huge open world for players to explore as Geralt of Rivia.
In Wild Hunt, players have no shortage of things to do, and you can literally do as much or as little as you like.
This game also features many choices for the players to make, many of which will have lasting consequences.
If you're looking for a sandbox open world game with an incredible story, The Witcher 3 is for you.
This game likes to call itself a creative paradise and lives up to that title and more.
Although the aim of this game is to build machines and vehicles from scrap metal, there is also plenty to discover!
If that wasn't exciting enough, don't worry because there are also monsters to fight and a full survival mode to make it even harder.
Scrap Mechanic may not have any of themlargest open world maps, but there are hundreds of hours of things to discover.
Overall, this is a very cheeky and fun game that gives players a lot of freedom to create anything their heart desires!
14.Assassin's Creed Odyssey
Assassin's Creed Odyssey offers a lot of things to see and do in mainland Greece and the islands.
This game gives players a lot of freedom that other games in the series don't have, including the ability to kill civilians with impunity.
You can also switch between taking over land for Athens and Sparta, and launching conquest battles whenever you want.
While you can't really customize Alexios or Cassandra's appearance, there are plenty of armor and weapon options and upgrades.
If you're a completer, it'll easily take you over 130 hours to complete everything in this game, the most in the series!
While Rust doesn't lack performance issues, that hasn't stopped players from embracing it with open arms.
This sandbox survival game is one of theThe best online games to play with friendseven if you can do it alone.
In Rust you have to work, survive and team up with over 100 other players.
However, the servers reset on a weekly basis, so you always have to start over, adding to the overall challenge.
While it can be a chore, Rust is highly addictive and once you start playing, it's very hard to stop!
Hitman is an interesting type of sandbox game because each mission has a specific objective, but players are given complete freedom to carry it out.
There are several ways to kill targets, from disguising them as runway models to simply shooting them.
Each level also has its own set of challenges that require you to get creative and force you to think outside the box.
In Hitman, there are almost unlimited ways to complete each task, giving you an incredible amount of freedom to explore.
Valheim is an indie hit that takes players back to the Viking Age, specifically the afterlife, where players must prove themselves worthy of Valhalla.
In the beginning, players must survive in an open world, using tools to build shelters and weapons to fend off enemies.
Each new character is placed in a procedurally generated world divided into different biomes.
Each biome has its own unique enemies, resources and bosses to find, and you'll need to be careful before you go.
If you are a fan of Minecraft, you will absolutely love this game and soon spend hundreds of hours exploring everything it has to offer.
One of themost popular video games, the sheer amount of freedom you're afforded in RimWorld is amazing!
As a construction and management simulation game, there are several starting scenarios to choose from.
These are designed to help players create their own stories while stranded on a procedurally generated planet.
Characters can also have any set of negative or positive traits that affect how they can contribute and influence growing communities.
While the game is technically over when you leave the planet with at least one settler, a playthrough isn't enough to see everything in the game.
With so many ways to explore, it's easy to go through multiple playthroughs and still want more.
Many previous Spider-Man games have been sandbox standalone games, but this one really stands out.
One of thebest open world ps4 games, Marvel's Spider-Man, offers players a massive map to swing across.
This game really makes you feel like you ARE Spider-Man, and there's always something new to discover around every corner.
Best of all, you can set your own pace in this game and even spend hours exploring it if you want!
We only hope soMarvels Spider-Man 2is able to live up to the high expectations this game has raised!
8.Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Animal Crossing: New Horizons is a cute game that is perfect for relaxing when you want to de-stress.
This life simulation game moves players to a new island along with some anthropomorphic neighbors.
It is then up to you how you build your new home and create your own unique story.
In addition, there are many seasonal events and numerous other activities that will ensure that you never get bored!
7.Mount a Blade 2: Bannerlord
The sequel to Warband, Mount and Blade 2: Bannerlord is a strategic action role-playing game that gives players the opportunity to build their own army.
While there is a campaign map to follow, you also have an incredible amount of freedom in how you complete your objectives.
How you build your army and tackle sieges is entirely up to you, and there are countless ways to be successful.
The best part is that the multiplayer component allows players to compete against each other on different maps with new game modes!
6.The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Except we are one of thembest zelda games, Breath of the Wild is also a great sandbox.
Nintendo has really put a lot of effort into developing this game and there is so much to do.
Breath of the Wild offers hours of exploration on the open world map and there is always something new to discover.
Plus, there are no quest markers here, so you really need to explore them thoroughly to progress!
5.Assassin's Creed 4 black flag
Like Odyssey, Assassin's Creed 4: Black Flag is a great sandbox with so much to explore.
Seriously, there are plenty of Caribbean islands to explore, as well as all of Cuba and the tip of the Florida peninsula.
If you want, you can even just jump off your ship and dive into the depths of the ocean, which we highly recommend.
This game also doesn't force you to do anything too fast, so you can basically just sail around and explore the locations.
4.The Elder Scrolls V:Skyrim
What can we say about The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim that hasn't already been said in the many re-releases?
Regardless of how many times Bethesda remasters this game, the fact remains that it's a great sandbox.
There's so much to do in this game that fans are still discovering new things ten years after its initial release.
Between the remasters and countless mods released for this game, there's almost nothing it doesn't offer right now.
3.Grand Theft Auto V
Grand Theft Auto V is almost as old as Skyrim and one of thembest GTA games of all time, and it's huge.
Spanning both a busy city and a remote hillbilly, this game has so much to offer that it could easily take you over 100 hours to complete it all.
Best of all, like Skyrim, GTA V has a thriving modding community that has added even more cool stuff to this game.
The game even has its own extensive toolkit, the Rockstar Editor, so you can create and add your own stuff to the game!
With so much potential, it's easy to see why this game is still popular ten years after it was first released.
Of course, we can't make a list of sandbox games without mentioning Minecraft, a game that has taken the world by storm.
Although it has changed a lot since it was released in Java form in 2009, it has lost none of its charm.
Because each world is procedurally generated, you'll never have the same experience in Minecraft twice.
With so many things to build, explore, mine and harvest, you can easily spend hundreds of hours playing just once.
1.Red Dead Redemption 2
First place goes to Red Dead Redemption 2, a visually stunning game that turns the Wild West into a sandbox.
While this game has objectives and a main story, you can also just drive around with friends or go fishing.
There are also random events around the world and side activities such as playing poker, searching for petroglyphs or dueling.
Oh, and you also have to watch out for the weather, otherwise you could get cold and your character will either lose weight or gain weight depending on what you eat.
Seriously, Rockstar thought of everything when making this game and we are incredibly grateful to them!
We hope you enjoyed our list of the 25 best sandbox games and hopefully found some new ones!
While each of these games has something unique that sets them apart, they still offer players an incredible amount of freedom.
But seriously, if you've slept in Red Dead Redemption 2, you're really missing out on the ultimate sandbox!
Here's a quick summary of the 25 best sandbox games:
- Red Dead Redemption 2
- Grand Theft Auto V
- Older Scrolls V: Skyrim
- Assassin's Creed 4 black flag
- The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
- Mount a Blade 2: Bannerlord
- Animal Crossing: New Horizons
- Marvels Spider-Man
- edge world
- Assassin's Creed Odyssey
- scrap mechanic
- The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt
- Crusader kings 3
- Cities: skylines
- Go to the Middle Ages
- Die Sims 4
- Stardew Valley
- Cause 3 only
- Fallout: New Vegas