I don’t think Rust really fits the description of a sandbox game compared to a game that I can;t mention I think (not sure if rules allow). It takes no brain power to build all the stuff in Rust because it’s all prefabs that anyone can build that is simply learned blue prints. Like the quarry and turret, both of these objects require their fixed set of items that can only build those objects. This takes away the unique ability to build custom machines from basic building block parts. For instance, why should the gas engine used for the quarry not be used to power some other unique machine of one’s design? Maybe I want to hook the engine to a gearbox that attaches to a wheel crank that then goes to a rod to push a large solid block that makes this a compactor machine ram that crushes base raiders when they fall into my compactor’s pit. Or maybe power a mini gun turret that you sit in to wipe out a group of raiders trying to attack your base. Or maybe use the camera that is used for the auto turret to also be able to set up a security system that shows you what part of your base that the raiders are in.
I’ve seen someone literally make a ICBM missile in the game I think I cannot name using nothing but the large catalog of building components that then wiped out a base some distance off!!! Brain power is also important to offense and defense rather than raw talent in FPS shooting ability.