Welcome to your latest edition of the Community Crunch!
ARK: Procedurally Generated Maps!
There’s a lot you can do with this system currently, and throughout development, it’s going to get even better. We’ll be adding additional biomes, making optimizations, creature spawns, and much much more. A lot of players have already shown a lot of interest in PGM and here’s a quickstart guide on how you can get setup with your own PGM!
PGM & Mods!
We’ve uploaded the latest version of the ARK Dev Kit which will allow enterprising modders to get stuck in and create their own version of procedural generators! Check out our forums over on the Unreal Engine Board to see all the details and get the latest version for yourself!
That’s not all, as of this week we will be hosting a new contest in our Community Crunch! Players will be able to show off their creations for a chance to win a 100$ Steam Gift card, plus get their map featured in the next set of Official Extinction server maps! That’s right, your map could be featured as an Official Server for a one month period!
Submit media content of your procedurally generated map, this can include videos, screenshots, and live stream vods – anything you want in which we’ll be able to visually see how your map looks. You can even get players on it and have them build or battle out a PvP game to show what it’s capable of!
After submitting the media content, you’ll also need to include the PGM settings used to create the map, you’ll be able to find that in your game.ini – head over to the How-To Guide for further instructions on where the settings are stored and what each one does.
Finally, give your map a name! Keep it SFW of course
And of course, if you are using a special modded Procedural ARK Generator, let us know and share it with us!
It’s also possible that this contest could have a couple of winners, so looking forward to seeing all the entries and your procedurally generated maps!
ARK: Evolution Event!
We’re running another! And it’s live, here are all the juicy details;
Through the weekend the Official ARK Network will be affected by an Evolution Event! Survivors playing this weekend will get to experience the following bonuses:
2x Harvesting Rate
2x Taming Rate
2x EXP Rate
So be sure to log in and enjoy the increased rates whilst you can! The rates will return back to normal on the 24th of October at 12PM ET.
ARK: Official Server Guidelines!
In case you missed the announcement, here’s a little reminder. Read them and make sure you’re following them!
ARK: Scorched Earth 25% Off!
To celebrate the upcoming release of ARK v248 – Scorched Earth is now on sale for 25% off on Steam!
Get it while it’s hot!
NVidia Ansel Photography Contest
ARK: Survival Evolved and the Scorched Earth Expansion Pack now include support for NVIDIA Ansel — a revolutionary new way to capture in-game shots. Compose a shots from any position, adjust with post-process filters, capture HDR images in high fidelity formats, and share the screenshots in 360 via a smartphone, PC or VR headset.
Learn more about these features in the NVIDIA blog.
Now let’s get to the contest!
There were 3 potential categories for survivors to enter their shots into and they were the following:
- Super Resolution: These should be taken at 8x Super Resolution. Players can optionally use Depth of Field effects accessible in Spectator mode by pressing the [Delete] key.
- Panoramic 360 Stereoscopic 3D: These should be taken at 4x Super Resolution, in 360 Stereoscopic 3D mode. We will crop them to 2D for web display, while also providing the 3D version for viewing within VR display.
- Freeform: Any settings, whacky and creative use of Ansel filters are encouraged. Adding humorous titles/captions in Photoshop is also acceptable for this category!
And now without further ado, here are your entries!
You’ll want to click on the image title to be able to download the maximum size image, we’ve resized them for display purposes
EXFIB0 – Fire Wyvern
GamerPerfection – Summoning the DodoWyvern
Soulyouth – Bugs! Bugs! We’ve got Bugs!
NakedZombo – I’ve had enough of these clowns
NakedZombo – Run!
Soulyouth – Free!
Victoria – Joshua Tree
KISHK0 – Fighting the Beast
EXFIB0 – Sacrifice
EXFIB0 – Dragon Attack
Andrew – Smoking Hot!
EXFIB0 – Winner’s Glory
Soulyouth – Lunch
Soulyouth – Technosaurus
Soulyouth – Eruption
Speikobrarote – A silent moment
Panoramic 360 Stereoscopic 3D!
EXFIB0 – Set Fire To The Sky
EXFIB0 – Dragon 360
EXFIB0 – Flames
NakedZombo – Enter the Boneyard!
EXFIB0 – Dragon 360 2.0
EXFIB0 – Dragon
EXFIB0 – The Island
KISHK0 – The Beauty of Ragnarok
Soulyouth – Ascended
Zuus – Allo Shuffle
Thank you everyone for your wonderful entries and congratulations to our winners, we’ll be in touch! Looking forward to next week entries, hopefully some epic landscape shots with our new PGMs?
This is an award given to Survivors to celebrate the amazing structures you build. These bases are judged based upon a number of different factors such as their creativity, uniqueness, how fun of a base it is, the difficulty of building it, the functionality it provides and much more!
And without further ado, the ARKitect for Community Crunch 68 is…
Maexch3n for Minas Tirith!
Epic build buddy! Looks absolutely fantastic, thanks for the entry and congratulations! That’s not all though folks, we’ve got some awesome runner ups!
Mama Naco’s Royal Galleon
You can check out his full album here: http://imgur.com/a/caTwn
This contest is open to all types of video be they funny, epic, scenic, stories, whatever inspires you. Just a general reminder that they should remain safe for work, think of the children!
And without further ado, the ARKVideo for Community Crunch 68 is…
Absolutely hilarious entry and congratulations! We’ve also got a runner up we’d like to congratulate for their fantastic showcase of the new PGM System!
Ragnarok in 4K by KISHK0
RANGER CHRONICLES #16 – A SLIGHT MISCALCULATION by Virtual Realms
The Crate – SoTF Map Trailer by Kai Cent
The Daily Grind – ARK Bites by LameWolfProductions
ARK Mythbusters Episode 4 by EXFIB0
Rewind Forward – The Raptor Kitchen Scene
Rewind Forward – Clever Girl
All Hollows ARK by Connisaur
SpookiSushi’s Raptor & Survivor
ARK Oil Painting by odinmay
Castle by Kelly
Fanmade Dossier: Archelon by Mega
Fanmade Dossier: Wraith by Shadlos
Fanmade Dossier: Yangchuanosaurus Xiaolongi by Shadlos and Dilophoraptor!
Mod Spotlight: Ragnarok!
Ced: Welcome to another Mod Spotlight! I’m here with the creators of the new map Ragnarok! It’s been getting a lot of traction in the workshop, and I thought I’d take some time and talk with the people responsible. So, does more than one person work on this map. And if so, how do you divide the workload?
Excited Kangaroo: It does seem to be getting picked up by many ARK players, despite its WIP status and only having about 5% done. We all work together on the map, luckily UE4 can divide parts of the map up into sections and that allows us to share files through a version control system, specifically Subversion in our case. Making maps with a group of people is a lot of fun. Much like playing games with your friends can be better than just yourself.
Ced: Divide and conquer, I like it! So how about we start with an introduction to the team members! Who’s all involved and what experience do they have with UE4 or game development in general?
Excited Kangaroo: Sure, for our team we have members from the Valhalla map, Excited Kangaroo and Enduran, followed by JacksonL from Umassoura, then a few contributions from my brother Earthmark. Jackson has been involved in modding since UT2004, whereas the rest started when Valhalla hit the workshop page.
Ced:Wow that sounds like a pretty stacked team! I am familiar with JacksonL’s work on Umassoura. So what brought the team together? Was the original concept for the map a collaborative effort?
Excited Kangaroo: Well, we had some issues with our original map, ones that could not easily be corrected short of redoing it entirely. With that in mind we decided to begin planning a new map with what we had learned from our previous project. We thought about every issue we had run into, and how we could plan ahead to better deal with them. About half way through the planning phase we had a few members lose interest and decided to look for another. We had always liked the work Jackson does and luckily he was interested in joining us as well. So far it has been a good decision as he brings a lot of great ideas to the table! Earthmark has always been hiding out in the background, and enjoys coming up with some new mechanics we can implement into the map, one example is the salmon that migrate up waterfalls.
Ced: Salmon migration??! Sounds like you guys put a lot of thought into the map! So tell me what that’s like with a larger team. How did the creative process get started? Did you have a rough sketch or idea of how you wanted the island to be sculpted? Did you use any references?
Excited Kangaroo: Heh, yeah one of the things we wanted to really develop on was player interaction with the map. They don’t just jump up waterfalls, you can spear them or crossbow them as they are jumping. Along those lines we implemented traps that force the player to stop for a minute and think on how to get past them. I don’t want to spoil anything but for those interested you can check out our 1st dungeon.
As far as the general planning phase we just sat down and started listing off ideas. Enduran would draw them out on a map and we would discuss and iterate them until we got what we all thought would be best. It has changed a bit from then but the general idea has stuck. One of the reasons we released the map so early on the workshop was to get player feedback, as that has proven very valuable and altered some of the design choices we were going to make.
As far as developing the map as a group, it’s extremely helpful to have friends to bounce ideas off of. If something you’re creating isn’t working out, you can have a second set of eyes on it almost immediately and offer some advice. It also allows us to delve into the more technical applications that drive player experience and increase performance, instead of just plopping a few rocks down and calling it good. We like to check out real locations and try to take influences into the map. One of the things we love to do is create natural looking/feeling environments as we feel it helps sell the survival experience.
Ced:Well from what I’ve seen it definitely shows it was some forethought going into the map. Some of the level designers in the office were really impressed with the landscape and use of the existing ARK assets. Do you have any cool things planned like the salmon migration? Maybe some caves?
Excited Kangaroo: Glad to hear that! I would love to talk about some other features we have in the works, but that would spoil the surprise! If you run through our first cave I would say more things to that extent are on the way. All I can say is be prepared for the upcoming ice cave, sunken ships and white-water rapids!
Ced: I think that alone is enough to get people excited! So obviously this is a hobby for the team right now. Is anyone actually pursuing or interested in pursuing a career in game development?
Excited Kangaroo: When we started modding it was defiantly just a hobby. We just wanted to make an awesome map and learn more about what went into making the video games we already love to play. But I can say with 100% certainty that this experience has made us all consider switching careers as it carries with it an immense sense of pride and satisfaction when you watch people go on adventures in a land you helped create. I don’t think you could find that in any other profession, or at least not to this level.
Ced: I’d have to agree, I made the jump about a year back and haven’t looked back. Map making is a lot different than making a standard mod. Any general tips you’d like to give to aspiring map makers?
Excited Kangaroo: Don’t get discouraged! Mapping takes a TON of time, even if you are working in a group. Don’t be afraid to ask questions on the forums or in the ARKModding discord. Many of us love to help out and teach others tips and tricks we have learned along the way.
Ced: Needless to say, I’m genuinely looking forward to what’s coming in this map. It has a lot of character already! I’ll do a follow-up with the team as it gets closer to completion. Thanks for taking the time out to chat with me. Any parting words for the Ragnarok community?
Excited Kangaroo: We look forward to it! As for the people already following the map as well as newcomers, we really appreciate all the feedback and patience while we develop the map. We are excited to have you all with us to guide the future of Ragnarok into a map that will guarantee many more hours of fun within ARK!
Until next time…
Wildcard Jat and the ARK: Survival Evolved Team!