A SandBox to Sandbox: A Tangible Terrain Generator for Prototyping Game Worlds

Sebastian Schwarz, Benedikt Strasser, Michael Lankes, Martin Kocur

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingsConference contributionpeer-review


Designing the game world is foundational for creating games. However, existing software solutions for creating game worlds such as terrain generators often require a significant amount of time and experience to be mastered. Particularly for beginners, this poses a challenge and slows down the progress in development. To address this issue, we propose a tangible terrain generator named SandBox composed of a small sandbox enabling users to create a terrain landscape using sand. Leveraging the engaging and familiar activity of playing in a sandbox and creating simple models, we hypothesize that SandBox offers easy-to-learn and intuitive landscape creation for games. We evaluated SandBox in a study with eight participants and compared it to a common terrain builder using the 3D-modeling software Blender. Qualitative insights indicate that SandBox was well-received. Neither usability nor task completion time was significantly different. We discuss the use of our tangible terrain generator and propose further features for future work.
Original languageEnglish (American)
Title of host publicationEntertainment Computing -- ICEC 2023
EditorsPaolo Ciancarini, Angelo Di Iorio, Helmut Hlavacs, Francesco Poggi
Place of PublicationSingapore
PublisherSpringer Nature Singapore
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)978-981-99-8248-6
Publication statusPublished - 14 Nov 2023


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