Ascended Survival Ark is pushed back to October as developer Studio Wildcard announces that the Unreal Engine 5 Ark remaster for the beloved dinosaur survival game will now launch in early access. Ark Survival Ascended will also be split into parts, with The Island launching first, Scorched Earth scheduled for December, and the other maps arriving at a later date in 2024.
“With what we’ve learned about remastering The Island from scratch, it wouldn’t be feasible to complete Scorched Earth to a standard we’re happy with,” Studio Wildcard announces on their blog. “Initially we had planned to send more content on the first day, but that will not happen.” As such, the team is also slightly lowering the launch price of the game to $45 (was $60), with a further discount for those who purchase it at launch.
The remaster was initially announced as a way for the team to familiarize themselves with Unreal Engine 5 development prior to Ark 2. It was then slightly reworked, and the team responded to negative feedback by bundling all the expansions into one package, which would have a price at the aforementioned 60 dollars.
Now, with the August to October delay, you’ll get the bundle for $45, or $40 off if you buy it when the game launches in Early Access. However, as mentioned above, you’ll only get access to The Island initially – Studio Wildcard’s current plan is “for Scorched Earth to hit ASA in December of this year, Ragnarok and Aberration to follow in Q1 2024, and the rest of the maps beyond then.
All of this still seems to have angered the game’s normally dedicated player base, which has faded from its initial disappointment and anger that the remaster, initially expected to be a free update, is instead a paid-for product. complete. Instead, the prevailing tone at the moment seems to be a joke; in particular, the Ark subreddit is currently full of memes about the latest update.
In particular, fans are pointing to the latest weapon comparison image shared as part of the update, which shows a club, bow and arrows, and tools in the UE4 engine from the original Survival Evolved alongside the new Survival Ascended equivalent. “They are the same image,” comments one post, referring to the popular Pam meme from The Office US.
“We know you are excited, curious and skeptical; we get it,” says Studio Wildcard. “Our plan is to show the game close to the ASA launch, as that will be when it is fully ready and best represents the final product, so you will have to keep an eye out until then.”
It also confirms that, to match the delay, the official Ark Survival Evolved network will now shut down on September 30, 2023. On top of this, the Scorched Earth delay means you won’t be able to transfer your server when Survival Ascended launches; instead, server transfers “will be enabled when Scorched Earth launches in December.”
Ark Survival Ascended will launch in October 2023 for PC, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X/S at an early access price of $44.99, with a launch discount taking it to $39.99 at launch. The game is scheduled to remain in early access until “late 2024, once all content has finished its next-gen remaster.”
For now, you can play the original Ark Survival Evolved via PC Game Pass, if you have an active subscription to Microsoft’s library of games. Ark 2 is planned to join there, but there’s currently no confirmation if Survival Ascended will be on the service.
We’ve got more of the best dinosaur games on PC if you love a bit of prehistoric frivolity, or you can check out the best Ark mods for lots of ways to up your game right now.