Isn’t “sandbox” really “PC driven”?
“Plot driven” sounds like “railroading” to me. I think often, however, “plot-driven” is used to mean “DM driven”. “DM driven” can mean either “railroading” or “NPC driven”.
So, my list of alternatives is beginning to look like...
About railroading: Although it is often considered a dirty word—especially among the grognards—I tend to think it is perfectly valid...in moderation.
So, now I’m thinking less in terms of alternatives and more of a continuum. A triangle with the vertices...
- Railroading (DM predestination)
- NPC driven (PCs reacting to NPCs)
- PC driven (PCs being proactive)
I really should’ve drawn a diagram to emphasize that these are extremes rather than alternatives, but that’s too much work for “thinking out loud”. Well, today it is.
Does sitting on any of these vertices makes for a particularly good game? Don’t you really want a mix?
Perhaps being closer to the “PC driven” vertex is better and being closer to the “railroading” vertex is worse.