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Ark 2 release date window, trailers, gameplay, and more

Here’s everything we know about the Ark 2 release date window, and what to expect from gameplay, trailers, platforms, story, and mod support.

Ark 2 release date - prehistoric bird picking up a glowing relic from a skeleton

When is the Ark 2 release date? Ever since the Ark 2 announcement at The Game Awards 2020, we’ve been looking forward to learning more about the upcoming dinosaur-themed survival game. Based on the two cinematic trailers and the additional info from the Studio Wildcard development team, it’s clear that Ark 2 will feature a unique story, enhanced gameplay mechanics, and (of course) a T-Rex.

Ark 1 established itself as one of the best survival games, but only time will tell whether Ark 2 can break into our list of the best PC games. From the Ark 2 release date to its platform, souls-like combat, and mod support, here’s everything we know about the Ark sequel.

Ark 2 - two people walking through on a cliff with a weird landscape in front of them. Pterasaurs are flying around, and larger dinosaurs can be seen eating grass.

Ark 2 release date window

The Ark 2 release date is forecast for late 2024. Studio Wildcard confirms this release window on the official Ark forums.

In a blog on the Ark website, the developer says, “After careful consideration, we have decided to delay the sequel’s launch to the end of 2024,” citing the decision being made as “for the betterment of the final product” and confirming that it will still release exclusively on Game Pass for PC and Xbox. During the NobleCon19 business conference stream in December 2023, Snail Games CEO Jim Tsai reconfirmed that the game was coming in late 2024, with annual DLC support through to 2029.

Studio Wildcard also confirms that the game is being made in Unreal Engine 5 which is “incredibly new technology” to the developer, and that it wants to use UE5 “to its full potential” to make Ark 2 the best it can be.

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Ark 2 trailers

So far, we’ve seen two cinematic trailers, and both feature Vin Diesel as the hero Santiago. In the first trailer, Santiago’s little community (including his daughter) is ambushed by massive, orc-like monsters. The situation seems pretty dire, but Santiago is handling it well… Until a T-Rex joins the fight. As both orcs and humans fall victim to the gigantic dinosaur, Santiago manages to grab his daughter and find safety in a nearby cave.

In the second trailer, Santiago’s daughter introduces the world of Arat, where “every day is a fight to survive”. We see a Dodo, a bigger dinosaur, and then… a T-Rex again. This time, though, the T-Rex is tamed by Santiago and his daughter.

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Ark 2 gameplay

Although we’ve yet to see Ark 2 gameplay footage, Studio Wildcard has already disclosed a few details about the game’s core aspects. First of all, the sequel uses a third-person perspective and a redesigned control system. This includes parkour-like movement skills and souls-like combat. It sounds like we can expect quite a bit of dodging and blocking.

We’ve also been promised a World Event system that triggers unique occurrences, not just around your character’s location, but everywhere in the Ark 2 world. On top of that, there will be a new Creature Management system, component-based item crafting, and an improved build system with far more options than the original Ark.

As expected, Ark 2 will have a multiplayer mode and PvP combat. While there have been some rumors about a solo campaign mode, we haven’t seen any official news on that front. Naturally, PvE combat still plays a large role, but not just against dinosaurs: in Ark 2, you have to deal with hostile Aratai aliens, who’ll be using tamed dinos of their own.

Ark 2 release date: a humanoid monster with orc-like features wearing the skull of a horned creature. He is wearing bone armour.

Ark 2 platforms and mod support

Ark 2 will initially be released as an Xbox Series X/S console exclusive. The game will be available on Xbox Game Pass from day one, including PC Game Pass. Note that there’s still a possibility that the game will find its way to the PlayStation, but at this point, we have no idea how long the Xbox exclusivity window will last.

Studio Wildcard also confirms that the game will feature fully stackable, user-created mods, supported by mod.io. This means that anything can be added, improved, or redesigned, for both PC and console players. Besides mods, Ark 2 will likely receive some DLC content, just like its predecessor.

Ark 2 release date: a man who looks like Vin Diesel is brandishing a spear to fight against a dinosaur.

Ark 2 story

The trailers don’t reveal much about the Ark 2 story, but we do know that it takes place after the events of Genesis: Part 2, which is the final Ark: Survival Evolved DLC. In short (watch out for spoilers!), the DLC ended with the destruction of the Genesis Ship, which resulted in a Santiago clone being flung toward a new planet. We assume that this planet is none other than the world of Arat.

As the trailers have shown, Vin Diesel stars as the heroic protagonist in Ark 2, but that’s not all. As an avid gamer and great fan of Ark: Survival Evolved, Studio Wildcard decided to bring Vin on board as an executive producer. More precisely, Vin Diesel joined the production team as the President of Creative Convergence.

While we don’t know the exact scope of Diesel’s involvement, he has mentioned that he’s “excited to join the Studio Wildcard team to develop the story”. It suggests that he’s working on the game’s narrative and possibly more.

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And that concludes our Ark 2 release date intel for now. While we all wait for more news on the upcoming sequel, why not try out some of the best Ark Survival Evolved mods to get the most out of the original, or perhaps the best Ark Survival Ascended mods if you’re playing the updated version? We have some suggestions for the best dinosaur games on PC if you absolutely can’t wait until the Ark 2 release date but still want to get up close to massive prehistoric beasts.