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Ark: Survival Evolved servers going offline in August to make way for Ark: Survival Ascended

Ascended is an Unreal Engine 5 remaster of the original game.

Studio Wildcard has announced it will shut the servers down for Ark: Survival Evolved in August, and the game will be replaced with Ark: Survival Ascended.

Ark: Survival Ascended is a next-generation remaster of Survival Evolved and comes with new features, and plenty of improvements and enhancements.

Ark: Survival of the Fittest is a spin-off of Survival Evolved, pitting 60 combatants against each other.

Some enhancements include an Unreal Engine 5 overhaul with Nanite, Lumen and RTXDI, Dynamic Water, Interactive Foliage, and performance gains such as instanced rendering, threaded server networking, and native physics engine.

The game features cross-platform anti-cheat, cross-platform multiplayer with cross-platform accounts and cross-progression, and cross-voice chat and friends. You can also expect cross-platform modding where mods created on PC are delivered directly to end-user consoles from a custom modding backend. Modding capability will include full blueprinting support, stacked mods, and maps. Everything currently possible on the Steam version of Survival Evolved and more is possible on the new system and will be available for end-users to play on consoles in all modes.

You can also expect premium mods reviewed by Overwolf and Wildcard for quality control and value. Mod authors will optionally be able to specify price points for their mods and earn 50% of the price point. This is necessary to pay for the custom infrastructure required for Overwolf to support, administrate, and deliver Mods to the console.

Studio Wildcard plans on streamlining the process of upgrading legacy Survival Evolved mods to next-gen platforms and plans on reaching out to current and former sponsored modders to prep for the launch of Survival Ascended.

Survival of the Fittest will be integrated into the main Survival Ascened experience as a new fully-supported game mode. It will have a dedicated team that will continue to work on more gameplay changes, mechanical improvements, quality of life, maps, and balance adjustments. The initial mode will be revamped with an exclusive update, featuring cross-platform and cross-modding support, the Scorched Earth Survival of the Fittest map, a matchmaking queue, character and creature customization with cosmetics, a local lobby, and more.

You can expect numerous bug fixes alongside balance and functionality improvements. Art assets are being upgraded throughout the entire game, and there will be newly-designed holiday events released as mods so that they are always available to play new content, and QOL improvements.

Gameplay changes include but are not limited to, an updated mini-map with the ability to pan, zoom, ping, and more. There are new structures, display cases, smaller TEK Teleporters, and building QOL improvements such as snap fixes, increased foundation support, foundation height adjustments, and more.

Finally, a new queueing system, a new third-person camera with the option to opt-out, directional sprinting and walking, a ping system, a gamepad cursor, a chibi slot, a skins tab, more breedable creatures, and much more.

Ark: Survival Ascended will be released for PC through Steam and for PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S by the end of August. The base game will include The Island, Survival of the Fittest, and all the Non-Canon DLC maps that will be added over time.

If you play on PC and Xbox Series X/S, you will only be able to acquire the game via an ultimate-value bundle known as the Ark: Respawned Bundle. This bundle includes ownership of both Ark: Survival Ascended and Ark 2 and will be priced at $49.99.

This bundle will be available to purchase from the end of August 2023 for up to one year, after which Survival Ascended and ARK 2 will be sold separately. Additionally, the bundle will provide access to an exclusive one-month closed beta to Ark 2 in 2024 before the rest of the general public can play it.

PlayStation 5 users will be able to get their hands on Ark: Survival Ascended as a standalone next-gen game at launch in August for $39.99.

All the expansion packs will be sold separately on all platforms. You will pay $19.99 for the game's Explorer's Pass, which includes Scorched Earth, Aberration (Q4 2023), and Extinction (Q1 2024). The Genesis Pass, which includes Genesis Part 1 (Q1 2024) and Genesis Part 2 (Q2 2024), will cost you $19.99.

A new canonical-story expansion pack for Ark: Survival Ascended will be available in Q4 2023 and features four new creatures plus more.

At release, Survival Ascended players will have access to The Island, Scorched Earth, and the new revamped game mode, Survival of the Fittest.

Ark: Survival Evolved Launch Trailer

The final content update for Ark: Survival Evolved will release in June to celebrate Ark's 8th Anniversary, and includes the fan-voted Rhyniognatha.

Survival Evolved and Survival Ascended will coexist; however, crossplay between the games will not be supported. Once the servers go online for Ascended, Survival Evolved servers for PC, PlayStation, and Xbox will be sunsetted.

At that time, the final save data from the Survival Evolved official servers will be uploaded for players to re-host on their own servers. You can still play on single-player, non-dedicated, player-dedicated, and unofficial servers.

With Survival Evolved going offline, Studio Wildcard will also sunset official support for Primitive+, split screen, and procedurally generated maps. These aspects of the game will not be ported to the new Unreal Engine 5 version. That said, the team plans to release the source files for Primitive+ for those that wish to repurpose aspects of it for mods.

Any updates to Ark: Survival Evolved made in the future will be limited to crashes and critical bug fixes.

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