There’s been no shortage of sandbox games since the dawn of the generation. The power of the new consoles meant that the limitations developers used to have to wrangle with – in particular the trade off between having a huge open world over increased graphical quality – became all but a distant memory, and everyone started getting in on the action.
Franchises which were usually home to linear, story-driven titles suddenly became these sandbox behemoths, while the established giants of the genre like Rockstar continued to use everything at their disposal to deliver the deepest, and largest, maps on the market. Of course, with so many open-world games being created, it was inevitable that a good chunk would fall a little short.
What’s often the most disappointing part of getting a bad open-world game though, is when the sandbox itself is beautifully detailed, but the gameplay doesn’t do it justice. You can tell that the artists put countless hours of work into either painstakingly recreating iconic cities or coming up with their own imaginative locations, only to have them completely wasted on games that nobody wanted to play.