Xbox One owners finally can earn Achievements in ARK: Survival Evolved. Studio Wildcard released the 748.0 update to the dinosaur survival game Friday to help players boost their Gamerscore and much more. Perhaps just as welcoming, it a stability fix to address crashing to the dashboard, the addition of Procedurally Generated ARKs, revamped caves for The Island, and four new dinosaurs.
There is some bad news to cover first. Studio Wildcard Community Manager Jat announced an issue with PrimitivePlus for this Xbox One patch via Twitter. The 748.2 update will be released Monday, and the official total conversion mod will not work work at all until that patch goes live. Studio Wildcard has taken all official PrimitivePlus servers offline to ensure no progress has been lost. Update: The 748.2 patch was able to get through Microsoft’s certification quickly and is now downloadable. The PrimitivePlus servers are back online.
The Achievements for ARK: Survival Evolved are still a work in progress. Expect more to become available in future updates, but they do include Gamerscore points for things like riding a Giga, reaching the maximum Survivor level, defeating the game’s bosses, collecting all the Dino Dossiers, and reaching the highest point on a map.
Procedurally Generated Maps or ARKs have finally arrived as well. The ability to create semi-randomized maps was introduced to the PC version of ARK: Survival Evolved a little over a month ago. It required additional work and testing to get it on the Xbox One, but Studio Wildcard plans to mix up the Extinction servers by using PGMs to create a new map every time the server refreshes at the end of a month.
It’s important to note PGMs are still being developed by Studio Wildcard. They currently do not support Obelisks, caves, or the swamp biome. As noted in the Procedurally Generated Map guide, there are still supply drops and animal spawns based on the biomes generated. Missing biomes like the swamp and the desert, plus other features will be added as the developer continues to iterate on the feature.
Revamped caves on The Island map are another welcome addition to ARK: Survival Evolved. These have only been lightly touched since the game was first released but now they’ve been given a complete graphical refresh to bring “them up to par visually” and improve the game’s performance. New rewards and challenges also await inside.
Speaking of performance, Studio Wildcard’s official patch notes reveal a 300MB memory savings to help address the game crashing. ARK: Survival Evolved on the Xbox One struggles to stay stable in areas with a large number of player created structures, dinosaurs, and other objects. Players on official servers frequently deal with crashing to the Xbox One dashboard several times in a play session. Hopefully, this patch will bring that issue to an end.
Other performance improvements with the 748.0 update include a 7 percent performance increase due to the use of new PhysX libraries. Plus, the 252.0 PC patch notes list a 15 percent server performance improvement, which presumably made its way up as well.
ARK: Survival Evolved has been hammered with criticism over its performance. The game has been in the Xbox Game Preview Program for a year now, and it is still not uncommon to experience extremely low framerates, choppy gameplay, and other issues. Every bit of performance improvement Studio Wildcard can eke out leading to the planned spring 2017 release is welcome.
As for the new content that is included with the 252.0 PC patch, Xbox One owners can look forward to four new dinosaurs. There is the giant Cement Paste producing snail, Achatina; the nocturnal two-legged Megalosaurus carnivore; the Triceratops cousin, Pachyrhinosaurus; and the cowardly lizard, Moschops.
The oft-delayed Breeding Phase 3 also finally arrived with this update. This adds family trees and mutations when breeding dinosaurs. This causes some wild color combinations for dino offspring, which would seem to encourage inbreeding rather than discourage it.
Those curious if the Winter Wonderland 2 event is coming to the Xbox One received some good news. The 748.2 update for Monday will include the holiday event with Raptor Claus. The patch will also limit the number of PGM saves to three.
Here are the official 748.0 patch notes for the Xbox One:
- Procedurally Generated ARK’s!!!!
- Full set of new Xbox Achievements & rewards!
- Memory savings of over 300MB! Consequent stability improvements.
- Fixed memory leak with viewing Explorer Notes.
- All content up thru PC v252.0
- Performance increase of approximately 7% due to use of new PhysX libraries
And, here is what was included in the 252.0 PC patch.
- New Dinos: Achatina, Megalosaurus, Pachyrhinosaurus, & Moschops!
- New Mechanic: Breeding Phase 3: Random Mutations and Family Trees. At last!!!!
- All-new Caves on The Island, redesigned with proper shipping-quality layouts and graphics & increased challenge (ALL Cave Structures will necessarily be wiped in this version). (Still to come beyond this are the Underwater Caves & Tek Cave.)
- 2 new mythos Explorer Notes for each character
- Approximate 15% server performance increase due to massive replication & physx efficiency improvement
- Whistle Ordering Groups! Create groups by class, or specific-dino! Awwww yeah! (also Whistles to group-set Follow Ranges)
- New Whistle Type: “Move To”, point at an arbritrary location and tell your dinos to move there!
- VFX indicators for whistle commands: Move To, Attack, and Group-Selected Units. ARK RTS?
- Extra Option to “stream” in “Far” map sublevels, for large memory and performance gains (but reduced visual quality & draw distance).
- Tamed Giganotosaurus HP & Damage reduced by approximately 15%
[Featured Image by Studio Wildcard]