ARK: Survival Evolved
By Jon Quinn
2/12/2016, 12:00 p.m.
Tweet to: @LeissureOG
Hail Adventurers! Level ten ARK noob checking in. ARK is a pretty intense survival game that puts you in a world filled with dinosaurs and strange floating structures. Like Minecraft, you get little explanation about who you are or what you’re doing, but the implant in my arm and the previously mentioned floating structures definitely give it a Hunger Games vibe. You enter the game in full caveman mode and have to resort to punching trees for wood and picking berries off of local flora and fauna to survive, but after a bit of a grind you evolve into a badass with an RPG, riding a dinosaur! Oh, and you poop often in this game. So be sure to turn up your speakers so your roommates can enjoy that wet fart with you every few minutes! Don’t forget to pick it up with your bare hands, either – this is a “waste not, want not” kind of world and that fertilizer is going to come in handy! Pun unapologetically intended.
Early game is tough! You’re going to be spending a lot of time battling the elements. If you’re too cold, you need to get a fire started before hypothermia sets in. If you’re hungry, you end up picking berries while dodging carnivores like raptors on land or piranha in the water. The first few hours are definitely spent just trying to make it through to the next day, but after you get your shit together (literally) you can get some crops growing that takes a bit of the pressure off.
Pro tip: Don’t lead a pissed off brontosaurus to your thatch hut and expect to hide! Dinosaurs can huff, puff, and stomp that house down around you!
If you’re starting out in ARK, I would recommend trying to join a tribe as quickly as you can. You gain experience when friendlies gain experience. Also, the games tooltips leave much to be desired at this stage, a forgivable offense since the game is still in the alpha stage of development, but you’re going to want to have an ally around to help you figure out some of the basics of the game. If you’re logging in as a “forever alone” single player, there is ample reading on fan-made wiki pages that helps break down some of the finer points of ARK.
Taming dinos is by far the coolest feature of ARK. Want to mount up on a saber tooth tiger? That is a thing! Want to start a farm for the elusive dodo bird? Done. These dinosaurs are your friends, your allies, your life line, and your ticket to bigger and badder dinosaur pets! As you use a specific dinosaur, it will increase in level, allowing you to further specialize its talents like increased carrying capacity or stamina.
OK, I’m gonna go get my caveman on! Tune in next week for info on my evolution into mid-game.