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Fans are blasting ARK: Survival Ascended, but is it really bad?

ark survival ascended

Studio Wildcard is addressing server issues that have been lambasted by players in ARK: Survival Ascended after a disappointing launch.

Xbox revealed the first gameplay footage for ARK: Survival Ascended, the remake for the 2017 title. The game is powered by Unreal Engine 5 and will be available for the latest platforms in November. According to the developer, the game is using the latest technology to deliver a realistic experience. Players can expect subsequent expansions to the world at no additional cost.

On October 26, the game launched an early access version through Steam. Soon after, gameplay footage surfaced on YouTube on a channel operated by Nooblets. Nooblets is one of the most notable channels in the ARK fandom, with over 400,000 subscribers. In the video, Nooblets compares the trailer and the real game. While the original trailer shows a bright environment with rich textures, the actual game falls short of that benchmark and fans are not happy.

Is ARK: Survival Ascended bad?

ARK: Survival Ascended has been heavily criticized for server issues and underwhelming graphics.

On Steam, the game has garnered mixed reviews, most of them regarding the servers. Long waiting times and poor stability are some of the most common complaints. Studio Wildcard says it is working on fixing the server issues for ARK: Survival Ascended as well as fixing other changes. Some of the fixes include reducing the memory server consumption, graphics optimizations, and more.

In less than a week, ARK: Survival Ascended received over 16,000 reviews on Steam and only 52% are positive. Alongside the server issues, fans say the overall look of the game is different from what had been promised.

In the week following the early access release, developers pushed out at least two updates every day. Server stability and crash prevention have been the main focus to this point. This attention from the developers is to be expected considering the emphasis on graphics. According to the system requirements, players need at least an Intel Core i7 processor and an NVIDIA GeForce 1080.

The game will be released for consoles at some point in November 2023. Once it is released, cross-platform multiplayer will be possible in ARK: Survival Ascended. Public servers can host up to 70 players while private sessions have capacity for eight. 

While fans have been highly critical of the game, it’s still in early access. Games like Baldur’s Gate 3 were rife with bugs and took some time to see content updates that likely should have been available at launch. This resulted in regular patches coming out even after the game hit store shelves.

Though the initial launch of early access may have been rough to this point, other games have had worse launches and recovered.

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Written by Steven Rondina

Steven Rondina has been playing video games since he was a toddler and appreciates every genre out there. He has earned the platinum trophy in every Soulsborne game, is regularly Master Ball-ranked on the competitive Pokemon ladder, and has spent thousands of hours missing shots on Dust 2. His work has previously been featured by Bleacher Report and The Washington Post, and he was an Assistant Editor at WIN.gg. You can follow him on Twitter / X at @srondina.

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