Originally planned for August 8, the official release of Ark: Survival Evolved has been delayed to August 29. This isn’t due to any hitches in development, however; Studio Wildcard say it’s because getting certified for retail took longer than expected. The forthcoming and free Ragnarok DLC is also delayed.
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“As of today, Ark has completed its Gold Master and certification for retail release. This process took a little longer than expected and as a result, our release date has been pushed back to August 29th. We’re deeply apologetic for those who were negatively affected by the delay; it sucks, it wasn’t what we had wanted, nor planned but where we currently stand. We wanted to address this sooner but did not want to make any statements until we were completely sure of what was going to happen.”
The news comes just three-and-a-bit weeks after the August 8 release date was announced, alongside a controversial price hike to £50 ($60) – the same price as a fully-fledged triple-A release. Ark’s fans would argue the game now contains enough content to justify that status, but DayZ creator Dean Hall is one of many to disagree.At least Jeremy Stieglitz, Studio Wildcard’s co-founder and Ark’s design director, gave as good as he got.
The free Ragnarok DLC will now also arrive on August 29 alongside a general update for us on PC. Wildcard say it’ll be “even bigger than we initially thought” thanks to the additional development time afforded by the delay; the world’s surface area is getting “approximately one quarter” bigger, with new biomes, a coastal Wyvern canyon, “an epic boss encounter,” new engrams, “and something secret the Ragnarok team are cooking up.”
The PC update will also make a bunch of performance optimisations as well as balance tweaks. Multiplayer bosses are “ridiculous,” Wildcard acknowledge, “and we’re going to fix it” with some difficulty tuning.