Ark: Survival Evolved launches today, with a proper story and a final boss


Ark: Survival Evolved version 1.0 is now available, both digitally and in a new physical box. 

Not sure whether to jump in? Here’s everything we know about Ark: Survival Evolved.

You can pick up either the base game or the Explorer’s Edition, which also grants access to all current and forthcoming expansions (so it basically includes a season pass). The Scorched Earth expansion is the latest of these and is available now, with more expansions due later this year and into 2018. Indeed, the next might be due in only a few days, if we can take this countdown as a hint of anything.

After two years and over ten million players in Early Access, Ark’s full launch includes a slew of brand new content:

  • Orchestral soundtrack by composer Gareth Coker (Minecraft, Ori and the Blind Forest). “A huge and varied score” now accompanies every part of the game – beaches, mountains, jungles, deserts, caves, boss battles, and the game’s sci-fiction climax all get unique music.
  • Ragnarok DLC: a free expansion map built by members of the Ark modding community. It’s an island 144 square kilometers in size, featuring expansive biomes and distinct creatures (such as the Griffin).
  • A storyline: you’ll get a better sense of where you are, why you’re there, and what the Ark actually is.
  • Endgame: hunt down and beat a final boss, with the aid of your fellow survivors and your dinosaur army.
  • Two new creatures:
    • Otter – found along the island’s many waterways, these friendly animals will ride on your shoulder, keep you warm, and are the only creatures able to harvest the coveted black pearls.
    • Phoenix – added with the Scorched Earth expansion, this creature appears during extreme heat waves and, if provoked, sets targets ablaze with a single bite.
  • The usual bug fixes and optimisation changes.

In Ark: Survival Evolved, you and a few other confused humans awake, stranded and starving, on the beach of a mysterious island. You’ll need to hunt, harvest, craft, research technology, and build shelters to survive its harsh weather and dangerous fauna, which includes over 100 breeds of dinosaur and other prehistoric beasts. On the upside: these can be tamed, weaponised, and upgraded. Ever wanted to ride a T-Rex with guns on its head? Of course you have.

You can grab Ark: Survival Evolved on Steam here. In accordance with its full launch, it recently got a steep price hike to £49.99 ($59.99). That’s double its Early Access price, but its defenders would argue that after two years of updates, it’s now got more than enough content to justify the triple-A tag.