Category: ARK: Survival Evolved

An ARK Story

The screenshot above is a capture of the best moment I ever had in ARK. I was playing with Ysharros and my husband and I spotted a brontosaurus egg off in the distance. Mommy dinosaur was a little ways away, and the lure of the egg was too great for me, so I snatched it.

Mommy dinosaur saw me, and started running for me. She would not rest until she had her revenge and she was PISSED. She completely destroyed the little base I had set up down the beach and continued to hunt me – so I dove into deep water and swam to an island, where I became stranded because Mommy dinosaur was still there.

My husband, smart man that he is, decided to fly down on his pterodactyl and scoped me up in his claws, and I cackled as we flew over the brontosaurus. Then his flying dinosaur started to run out of steam as we were overhead. We started cruising lower and lower until I fell right on top of Mommy who had NOT forgotten that I stole her egg.

I was promptly killed and eaten.

It was hilarious, and I laughed so hard at the whole scene, there was just no other response that fit. It’s moments like those that make me so glad I game, and my husband games, and when we can find a moment here and there we actually game together.

Returning to Games

I have tried to be better about buying in to early access games, but truth is that these days LOTS of games go into early access before being released in order to gain funding – the problem is I’ll explore their beta for a little while, get angry at the issues I find (even though they’re clearly in early access and it shouldn’t matter if the game is bug-filled) and then I set the game aside. Then I forget about it.

Then a major patch or DLC will come along and I’ll suddenly remember that I own that game and I haven’t played in a while.

ARK is a game like that. I bought in very early, played 20 hours of it, and then set it aside for whatever reason. Now there have been some DLC, the game doesn’t take 20 years to load (this was a major issue for me at the start) and a few friends are playing so I found myself logging in. I forgot how to do any crafting but the basics are still the same. Smash things, collect things, level up, build a shelter and try to survive a dino ridden island. I’ve died a handful of times because I simply forgot what it was I was doing or because I had to randomly go afk in an unsafe area and take care of whatever it was my child wanted at the time (crackers! toast with peanut butter! water with ice cube! To name a few of his favourites) but overall it’s coming back to me.

I’m still partially interested in PixARK (a pixel version) but it would have to hit a pretty hefty sale before I consider picking it up. Overall, it’s nice to return to games I haven’t played in a while. Especially if they are games that have no true ending. What about everyone else, do you return to play your older games or once you’re finished with them are you through for good? Let me know in comments, and as always, happy gaming, no matter where you find yourself!

Changes to ARK: Survival Evolved

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The last time I played ARK: Survival Evolved was right when the game released on steam as an early access game. While many people had performance issues it ran pretty well on my machine, and I happily set up a dedicated server for a few friends. Of course after a few weekends of playing I got completely burnt out, which is usually the case for me and early access games. I let it go for a while, updates happened, and then yesterday I decided to play and see what had changed.

First of all, there’s a lot more server customization than there was last time I played. I decided to play around with these settings not necessarily to make the game ‘easier’ but to make it less time intensive. I changed the experience bonus to 3x what it is at by default, along with the amount of resources you gather at one time. I left encounter difficulty and damage alone, there was no need to change any of that.

There are now dedicated servers, and non-dedicated servers. Non-dedicated are easier to adjust. You basically just select all of the options at the login screen, login, and then friends can join you. There are a few ‘downsides’ to this type of server though. One, your friends are tethered to you. They spawn at you, they can’t walk beyond you. This can be frustrating. Also they can’t just log in and play whenever they want to, it’s all reliant on you playing with them. Hence why I decided to go with a dedicated server.

In order to adjust the settings on a dedicated server you need to adjust the server.ini file. There are TONS of options that can be adjusted. There’s a pretty good list of them here on the steam forums.

There are also mods that you can use in your game now. I haven’t looked into these at all yet, but I know the steam mod community is a large and amazing thing to witness. I can only assume that the ARK branch of this community is well represented and I’m sure I’ll start checking out the mods before too long.

They’ve also added a lot of new creature encounters to the game. While I was collecting supplies in the jungle I ran into some mosquito like creatures that ended up poisoning me so I died. There are also new water creatures, new dinosaur types, new crafted items – and of course the game is just as beautiful as always. I didn’t have any issues with performance even though I was running the server along with my game client, and I really think that for a game that I had not even heard of before the company has done a pretty incredible job.

Did you pick up ARK when it first came out? Are you still playing or would you prefer it to be out of early access first? Let me know in comments!

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I still haven’t found a way to turn off friendly fire, so a word of caution when you’re playing with friends…

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