Ark: Survival Ascended Early Access: A Bittersweet Reception

Ark: Survival Ascended Early Access: A Bittersweet Reception

26. October 2023 by Valentin Pasetti

Ark: Survival Ascended, the highly anticipated follow-up to the original Ark title, has made its way to early access on Steam. Unfortunately, this debut has not been met with the applause and excitement the developers might have hoped for.

A Rocky Start on Steam

The launch day reaction to Ark: Survival Ascended has been, to say the least, lukewarm. The Steam platform, known for its honest and unabashed user reviews, currently labels the game as “mixed.” This is a concerning indication of player sentiment, especially for a game that has garnered such significant attention.


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Performance Woes Overshadow Potential

A significant point of contention is the game’s optimization, or lack thereof. Players have lamented over issues that have rendered the game near-impossible to enjoy fully, even when resorting to the lowest graphic settings.

Statements from players highlight their frustrations. One remarked, “Feels like 2015 all over again: single digit frame rates and bodies disappearing into the ground geometry.” Another, boasting a high-end RTX 3080, voiced their displeasure, saying, “can only get 50fps on LOW settings.” This is particularly concerning considering the promises of improved game quality with the integration of Unreal Engine 5, heralded as the “next-generation of videogame technology.”

Enhancements Fail to Deliver

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Beyond the touted shift to Unreal Engine 5, expectations were set high with promises of revamped artwork and a complete redesign of the game worlds. Features like dynamic Global Illumination, enhanced water dynamics, and state-of-the-art mesh streaming were expected to be game-changers. Yet, the current player experience suggests these enhancements have not reached their full potential.

Technical Difficulties Compound Player Frustration

The game’s challenges don’t stop at optimization issues. Reports of server crashes have been rife, complicating the early access experience. A concerning exploit has also been identified, allowing players to misuse admin privileges. Addressing this, the game’s support team stated, “We’re working on a fix for this now” and mentioned an impending server update. This update, however, comes with its set of concerns, as it plans to wipe all existing Official Server saves.

Awaiting Hotfixes and Console Release

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The game’s development team is now on the clock, with players eagerly awaiting hotfixes to address these pressing issues. Console players, on the other hand, will have to wait a bit longer. Due to “critical issues,” the console release has been pushed back to November.

Listen the Community!

For players and enthusiasts, the initial reception to Ark: Survival Ascended’s early access launch is undoubtedly disheartening. However, the game still holds potential, and with the developer’s commitment to resolving existing issues, there’s hope for improvement. It’s crucial to keep an eye out for updates and fixes in the coming weeks.