ARK: Survival Evolved Co-Founder Jeremy Stieglitz has posted to Reddit an unreleased interview he did for Eurogamer, which apparently won’t be published there. In it, he addresses some of the criticisms the game has received, specifically the Scorched Earth expansion — paid DLC for a game that hasn’t technically launched yet.
“We should have messaged it sooner and explained our goals with it before launch, rather than at the last-minute of release. In the long-run though, it’s been good for ARK’s gameplay: the new metagame-expanding feature called ‘Cross-ARK Travel’ which allows players to dynamically travel their characters, items, & creatures between servers is entirely due to the technical work done for the launch of Scorched Earth, which was the intent: to get our key technical & design systems to support expansion ARKs down the road.”
He also says that he was surprised the game ever made back its original $2M budget and that the console launch is a necessity.
“With a game this large and a team this small, if we didn’t release it on consoles early in order to gain the critical gameplay and technical feedback necessary for a reasonably smooth retail launch next year, we’d likely end up with a massive QA nightmare upon trying to ship the complete version. In essence we get to leverage the millions of console ARK players to help quality-check & polish the game, and they get (by popular demand) to play the game early, and get it at a steep discount compared to its final retail price. It’s fairly win-win in that respect!”
Unrelatedy, Stigelitz notes that the game’s planned Valentine’s Day content was delayed for the Max and Linux versions of the game but should be out by tomorrow.
Massively OP’s resident ARK streamer and server hostess MJ Guthrie recently wrote at length about the game’s struggles, from missed patches and the lawsuit to bugs and the Scorched Earth snafu.