Welcome… to Jurassic Park!
What, that’s not this thing? Oh, sorry, our bad. Welcome… to ARK Park! At least it rhymes!
The virtual reality off-shoot of the immensely popular ARK: Survival Evolved is coming later this year. In a new teaser trailer, players can witness the tranquil delights of a dino-themed park, reject it, and then start shooting up the place. It’s all we know how to do, now that video games have raised us to be mindless killing machines.
“In teams of up to four, players enter the wild to collect resources and dinosaur genes, which they can later use to unlock blueprint to forge items,” Studio Wildcard said in a press release. “You would also have the options to raise newborn dinos to mountable full-grown adults. In a special story mode that caters only to hardcore fans, players need to protect the humankind from raging dinosaurs with weapons of their choice.”
So ARK: Survival Evolved is going to be the first big survival sandbox not named Minecraft or Don’t Starve to not only make it to launch but to get there from Early Access development. Leaving EA is something we rarely see, which is why readers may notice I’m quite critical of games that ask for your money, sell you an incomplete game, and then spend years defending their EA status while continually making money on an unfinished project. To hear that a company once known for making paid DLC for an unreleased game is willing to shake the security blanket that is Early Access fills me with joy and a little trepidation.
Normally, this is where I’d tell you I’ve written up the interview, which is still true. However, as this was in a small group setting, not only do we have a writeup, there’s also a YouTube video for the few of you who have thirty minutes to wade through the (mostly) raw interview. You’ll see ARK’s Community Manager Cedric Burkes in person, hear daring press try to ask hard-hitting questions, and cringe as my terrible hat hair makes a quick appearance at about the 27-minute mark.
The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!
This week we have stories and videos from Heroes and Generals, Faeria, City of Heroes, Lineage M, Armored Warfare, Wakfu, Ark Park, Dauntless, Dark Age of Camelot, Overwatch, Blade and Soul: Table Arena, League of Legends, Strikers Edge, and Final Fantasy XI, all waiting for you after the break!
Wanna see some dudes in socks and funny hats mess with dinosaurs? Yep, we’ve got that on tap thanks to ARK Park’s new video, which includes first-person footage of players actually interacting inside of the VR game. It actually looks pretty darn amazing. Except to the people watching on and messing with the people behind the goggles, anyway.
First announced last November, ARK Park is Snail Games’ and Studio Wilcard’s Jurassic-era “immersive VR experience that brings you to a world where living, breathing dinosaurs are still roaming the earth” and where “players embark on an exciting tour of this ancient time, interacting [with] and witnessing hundreds of dinosaurs up-close and personal.” Its’ expected to launch on the Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR, and HTC Vive later this year.
If you’re old enough to remember the first Jurassic Park film, you probably remember the lengthy and involved explanation it gave about the technology that fueled the park’s dinosaur recreation. Ark Park has plenty of technology fueling its creation as well, but unlike the aforementioned movie, it’s all real technology that can actually work. Seriously, you can see it all in action in a video just past the break.
Obviously, the down side here is that this experience will not bring actual dinosaurs around to stomp about in front of you. The up side, however, is that even if all of this technology fails to work you will not be eaten by any dinosaurs. (You may be eaten by dinosaurs in Ark: Survival Evolved, but that’s the name of the game.) Plus, it’s not Jurassic World, so that’s another mark in its favor. Check the video out just below.
Remember ARK Park, the ARK: Survival Evolved dinosaur “VR experience” that Snail Games and Studio Wildcard are working on? Snail announced today that it’s launching on three platforms — the Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR, and HTC Vive — next year. The studio’s also sorted out the who’s-who, deeming Studio Wildcard “creative consultants” on the VR; Snail’s Peacock Studio will be “directing the project.”
“ARK stalwarts will have their skill and cunning in taming primeval creatures rewarded in this new game, as they can import their own collected dinosaurs from the original survival game into a up-close and personal, full VR experience. Players begin their ARK Park adventure at a visitor center surrounded by life-sized holographic dinosaurs where they’ll learn about these creatures that they’ve only read about and seen in books and summer blockbusters. From there, players will have the option to explore multiple interactive attractions on-foot, in vehicles, or on Dino-back, including a swamp, forest, desert, snowy mountain range and more. Each attraction features stunningly rendered and realistic environments of the period inhabited by ARK creatures, which can be found and captured through use of items, weapons, and puzzle-solving.”
The new trailer’s down below.
Studio WildCard is no stranger to pushing out new ARK: Survival Evolved projects before finishing the base game, but this time it has a partner-in-crime. UploadVR interviewed Snail Games CEO Shi Hai about his company’s partnership with WildCard on the upcoming VR experience ARK Park announced last week. What made Snail Games hop on this project? Hai explained that his studio “is devoted to being a ‘Virtual World Architect’ and VR is a high priority for [Snail Games].” On top of that, his team was fascinated by all the dinosaurs. Who isn’t?
With the emphasis on touring and education, it wasn’t a huge leap to think of a certain movie franchise when ARK Park was announced. Hai was asked how heavily Jurassic Park influenced this VR game, and he answered:
Jurassic Park is such an iconic movie franchise and is probably most people’s first memory of dinosaurs. It might even be the thing that ignited my love for dinosaurs in the first place. When we were creating ARK Park, we focused on presenting the beloved primitive creatures from ARK: Survival Evolved in an environment that is safe but stays true to the fictional world that the original title created. And the idea of a theme park came naturally to us.
Ever thought that ARK: Survival Evolved looked like a neat world, but you’re not into player-run servers? Maybe ARK Park is for you. Snail Games is apparently helming the effort to bring to life a Jurassic-era “immersive VR experience that brings you to a world where living, breathing dinosaurs are still roaming the earth” and where “players embark on an exciting tour of this ancient time, interacting [with] and witnessing hundreds of dinosaurs up-close and personal.” What could possibly go wrong?
The official Facebook page includes some teaser screenshots, including one of a Westworld-like transport system to the park and a glimpse of the “comprehensive weather system.” There’s not much else up on the official site right now save a swiveling panorama, a sign-up box, and spooky music. More when we have it.