ARK Alienware Mod Contest Finalists!
We’re very excited to announce the ARK Alienware Mod Contest finalists!
First of all we’d like to thank everyone who entered their mod to the competition, we've been really pleased to see how well the ARK modding community is developing. The results came in from our judges and the community and this is the top ten that we ended up with, in no particular order, so we wish the following a huge congratulations for making it through to the next stage:
David B - France - ARK PirateWorld
Oyvind R - Norway - Terra Nova Initia
Ricardo M - Germany - Shigo Islands
David M - USA - Valhalla
Alex M - UK - Eggrassic Park
Jake B - USA - Advanced Architecture Mod
Cedric B - USA - Primitive+
Sam J - USA - UMASSOURA
Thomas V - France - Pimp My Rex
Matthias W - Germany - Tribe Wars
The next process of the judging period will begin where we will narrow down our Top 10 to a Final 3 who will take home their share of over $25,000 in prizes! We’ll be looking to announce the winners of the competition by December the 8th! Good luck!
Throughout the days leading up to the final, we’ll be broadcasting one of the finalists on our twitch channel, www.twitch.tv/survivetheark - playing through it for a while and showing off what they had to offer! The first one will be on Sunday the 22nd at 6PM EST. Be sure to keep an eye out on our social media feed to see when we go live!
Special ‘Survival of the Fittest’ Charity Battle!
Here’s a first tease of the ARK Survival of the Fittest "Naughty or Nice" Charity Event. Not to be confused with main ARK game's upcoming "Winter Wonderland" re-theme, the "Naughty or Nice" SotF Charity Event will pit two 100v100 Tribes against each other in a massive 3-hour war across a redesigned snowy 'base-vs-base' SotF battlefield, with holiday themed accessories.
The 100-winning tribe members will get to distribute their share of the loot to charities of their choosing, as well as receive a special Xmas present of their own! Entrants will include many previous Tournament winners, streamers, developers (bonus $$$ for killing developers!) as well as an limited open contestant qualifier.
Stay tuned for more details, and keep your SotF skills sharp!
Now welcome to the 28th issue of the Community Crunch! To those unaware this is a topic which primarily consist of content to share, made by the community, for the community! As well as any little changes I want to make survivors aware about, which happen within our community ;).
Fanart, Screenshots and more!
Angler & Kairuku by axoNNNessj
Diabloceratops by Jynn
Soar by Bling Bling Disaster
Ride of Terrors by (FLoFF)TheMightSaurus
Zombie Dodo by Beakachu
ARK Size Comparsion by KrakenSlayer107
Saber, meet Dodo >:D by TheWolfenRaider
Bob has risen by TheWolfenRaider
1st Lancer Reg. on the "Lost Island Server" by Arthur Brown
Meeting Kong by milokamilo
Je suis Paris by Lacking Rhythm
Rex Artwork by Sparkelz99
Fanmade Dossier: Longisquama by blackfrog
Fanmade Dossier: Thylacine by Foxtail
Fanmade Dossier: Massospondylus by axoNNNessj
Fanmade Dossier: Leedsichthys by Solitak
Fanmade Dossier: Shantungosaur by [ESA] Parrotmarauder327
Fanmade Dossier: The Andrewsachus by Denovle
Megaloceros by Sparkelz99
Every week for the foreseeable future we’ll be hosting two contests for our Community Crunch. Remember for this week (and the foreseeable future!) we'll also be accepting entries for the newly introduced: Warpaint images, human and dino tattoos/bodyart for the #ARKArt award as well as bases both on your Brontos and Rafts for #ARKitect! Can’t wait to see the platform bases, the ships and tattoos/bodyart! Also can’t wait to see your new bases in the new biomes!
This is a title given to the Survivor who has created, in our eyes, the best base for the week. Survivors will need to upload their screenshots to the Community Hub, both the Artwork or Screenshot section will suffice and then post them in the designated thread, it’s also possible that we’ll see the screenshots in the hub but posting them in the thread will ensure that they’ll be spotted!
We’ll be judging the bases not on the quality of the screenshot, but on the unique designs, functionality, and the use of in-game tools available to you! At the end of each week, the screenshot for the best base will be featured in our #ARKitect section of the Community Crunch!
The #ARKitect award for Community Crunch 28 goes to…
It’s a tie!
Andy’s Room by Valoule
If you’d like to see the rest of Andy’s room, check it out here: http://imgur.com/a/9xJqW
Dinostirith by Luap
If you’d like to check out the rest of the fantastic must-see shots, you can see them here:
Two completely different submissions, both insanely incredible! Well done guys!
Honourable Mentions / Runner ups
We’ve got a runner up for ARKitect this week too! So big shout-out to them and we’ll be in touch too ;)!
Quetzal Airlines Model A(I)RK-1 and WarCer by [DN]-rednex
If you’d like to check out the rest of the fantastic platform-base shots, you can check them out here:
The second contest which will take place is for the #ARKArt award! This is a title given to the Survivor who has created, in our eyes, the best piece of art for that week using our new Per-Pixel painting system! Similarly to #ARKitect, Survivors will need to upload their masterpiece to the Community Hub, both the Artwork or Screenshot section will suffice and then also post them in the designated thread, it’s also possible that we’ll see the screenshots in the hub but posting them in the thread will ensure that they’ll be spotted!
We’ve also got a little request! Do you lovely painters mind uploading your ART PNT files so others could also give them a whirl? http://arkpaint.com/ has recently launched and will be a great place to do so! Be sure to provide a link in your next post
The #ARKArt award for Community Crunch 28 goes to…
First Place: Okim
A whole collection of room-signs from Okim’s tribe, great work guys! Keep it up.
To check out the rest of Okim’s tribes paintings, have a look here:
Honourable Mentions / Runner ups
You can check out the rest of the shots here:
Workshop Items: Advanced Architecture Mod
Survivors, this week we're joined by hogs and they're here to answer some questions and talk about their mods with us. Thanks for joining us! Do you think you could introduce yourself to the community, and let us know about the mods you're currently working on?
Hello everyone! Hogs, here, and I am a native of Kentucky, USA. Since I was a little kid I've loved to tinker with whatever interested me at the time and I've modded games since the late 80's. Currently I'm working on Advanced Architecture Mod for Ark! Users of the mod have taken to calling it The Castle Mod and that is definitely appropriate! I started off building some massive structures in Ark and realized that none of my castles actually looked like castles. That got me looking into the ADK to figure out how I could reskin the basic walls. After a day playing with the ADK I realized I could do so much more than reskin a wall and really just wanted to learn everything I could about modding for this game. That lead to some day dreams about the first game I really fell in love with, Dark Age of Camelot, and that pushed me to get my vision into the game as more than a reskin.
I noticed in the description for the mod you’ve stated that the Royal Engineer is ready to put his knowledge to work, for the survivor. This led me to think there’s more to this mod than first appears?
The structures are only part of what I am attempting to make with this mod. I have two dozen or so structures that I really want to add, but will be transitioning to more RPG elements/decorations after that. Since every idea I've had since I started is something requiring skills I don't yet have, its been a long process of figuring out Maya and the ADK to make my ideas reality. While I build the structures I'm also trying to learn some things on actually making the player's castle an experience, as well as just a place to call home.
What was your aim in creating the Advanced Architecture Mod? Were you inspired by anything which led you to create the mod? Also let us know more about the RPG elements! I wasn’t sure what to expect when I read that lore piece, what are you planning to incorporate?
My only aim at first was to make a mod that allowed me to build a castle that actually looked like a castle. My main inspiration was a lifelong desire to build things along with time spent playing Dark Age of Camelot. I really loved the impressive size of everything in that game and only looked to replicate that massive, impressive feel a structure gives when it dwarfs the players using it.
As for the RPG elements, I am planning things designed to get you out of the base and having fun. I don't want to give too much away before I see what's possible, but one thing I really intend on working out is a reason to be the King or Queen of your dominion. I've been playing around with a war board you can place in your castle. This board will be a map with certain areas marked off indicating lands that another king has claimed.
I want to tie certain bonuses to a crown that needs certain things within a certain distance of your castle, like farming plots, or a windmill. Things your castle needs to survive that might require interacting with other kings and queens to get the highest rewards. If there were a built in npc in the dev kit I could give commands to, that would be the dream piece to getting to where I want to be with this mod. At the moment, with as many other structures I have planned, it's more of a down the road idea at the moment. I eventually want players to actually feel like they are managing their fiefdom, which is the estate a feudal lord is in charge of, (if they want). Those changes will only be for players that willingly participate.
I think you’ve done a pretty good job of making your desires come to reality! Tell us more about the actual structure pieces, were any of them created by yourself? How do you know which particular items to implement and what are the long term plans for the future of the mod?
Everything in my mod was created by myself with Maya, Photoshop and the ADK with the exception of some of the textures. Since I'm less of an artist than anything else I found royalty free, commercial use images online and worked more on the building aspects of the pieces. Currently there are just over sixty pieces in the mod and I hope to eventually have a mod that acts like a toolbox of parts that allows players to make any kind of castle they desire! After the first few pieces, most of the additions have been community feedback. A few things I had wanted from the beginning, (like the throne), but I had to wait for my skill level to get to the point I could get something acceptable into the game. Nearly everything else has been people playing the mod and having ideas of their own. Long term, so long as people are still giving me feedback and playing the game, I will keep adding to it as need arises. It's been a great experience so far seeing ideas get into the mod that I hadn't even thought of.
Wow, all of them? That’s awesome! I’ve noticed you’ve got some pretty complicated pieces in here too, such as the drawbridge -- can you tell us, was it difficult to implement? Are there any pieces apart from the bridge that you found to be pretty rough, or are working on anything extraordinary for the mod that isn’t a structure piece but pretty tough to achieve?
The drawbridge was one of those pieces. Before I released the mod from private testing a friend asked if it was even possible. Like every other idea I've gotten from players, it was a matter of tinkering with the blueprints to see what I could do. The idea to put the handles where I did, and even the design was purely from testing and seeing what I needed to do to get players in the right position to make the door work from the other side. So far, that was the second most complicated item to get right. The hardest, so far, were the pieces that are part of what I call CCS, (Color Changing System). I saw fairly early that the number of things I was adding would quickly overwhelm a player so I didn't want ten different stained glass windows. About that time Wildcard released the Multi-Use Entry capability to the ADK and I knew right away that was the answer. Allowing players to change the skin on cosmetic items has been a hit with users. After a month, though, I finally have those pieces where they remember their colors after a restart. It's been a lot of tweaking and experimenting to see what is possible. The really cool stuff is still in my head waiting for the skills to add it to the game
As to a process I use, it's nearly the same as building something in real life. I have to get an idea of what it needs to be when it's finished, then I need to break it down into parts I can create. For anything I do, really, it's more about making sure I at least know the basics steps of the journey I'm about to take. Sometime in mid-August I opened Maya for the first time. It took me around ten seconds to shut it down in disgust. More buttons on the screen than the last ten programs of any type that I had used. I spent some time in the ADK and finally came back to Maya knowing I had to know it to continue. Patience to get through the hard bits is by far the biggest hurdle to overcome for me. I came from a life of modding through code, so the actual items were always beyond me. Now that I know the programs a little better, I get that anything I can picture in my mind is doable, if I just have the time to get all pieces correct.
A big part of my job is having to visualize where you want to end up before you get started. Being of the mindset that I need to have things planned in a certain order helps a ton with avoiding problems later on. Maya was a nightmare to learn until I realized it was a virtual workshop. It was mostly figuring out what all the tools do. With the stained glass windows, I drew them out on paper and tried to think of what all the pieces would need to be if I tried to make one in real life. Then I started making those pieces out of meshes. Was kind of a Eureka moment that made the whole process a lot easier. I've played video games my whole life as my way to unwind and that naturally pushed me towards modding. It's hard to want to play a game now that I can't tinker with.
That’s awesome that you’re able to bring your real-life career experience into your mod and allow it to benefit you in a way to make these structural pieces! Tell us more about your life of modding, where did you start and how has your experience been thus far?
When I was a kid, one of our neighbors showed me this crazy device he had hacked together. It was hooked up to a computer and would let him copy Nintendo cartridges directly to the pc, modify them then put them back. Realizing that what the dev put on the cartridge didn't have to be the end of the story was what got me hooked. Being able to put your own touch on something you already like just makes it easier to keep coming back to.
I then got into Arma because of Dayz. I love zombie related anything and that drew me in. That first day of learning how to get things set up on a server showed me there was a lot more to that game than I had thought. When I found that nearly everything in the game could be altered to a degree I jumped in with both feet. I'm the kind of player that can enjoy the game, but even still I will be thinking of what could make it better. With Arma it was mind blowing to discover what was possible for a user to do. I started scripting AI missions and eventually wrote a few larger mods for the servers I played on. Mostly it became granting wishes. People I played with would love the game but want more as time went by so I tried to add what they asked for. It was really fun making npcs and scripted missions because you got to tell a story in game that had no story.
With ARK, it's like I finally came to the point where all the different things I've learned came together. I've always had an active imagination when it came to making games more fun. I still see the same things in my mind, only now they look a lot cooler once I get them into the game. That community of openness has really set the bar for many modders when it comes to being able to find out information when you want it. I find a lot of that in the Unreal Community where people are always thinking of new ways to get things done and sharing ideas.
That's the part that draws me in the most. Being able to see what's going on behind the scenes to make these pixels happen. At the end of the day, it's about whether or not you had fun. For me it was just as much fun hunting snipers as it was scripting sneakier npcs.
As someone who’s clearly been around for a while in modding and has spent their time across different parts of it, what sort of advice would you share with others?
For new modders, I would recommend first getting a basic overview of the tools used to mod the game your modding for. Every game is different and every mod requires completely different levels of commitment from the modder. I started off my time in Arma by deciding I was going to make a new map. After wasting a year of free time I realized it would be five years or so before I had enough time to get everything correct in my planned dozen cities. It wasn't a bad experience as I learned a lot about scripting and server architecture but I would have rather had someone tell me to plan out a timeline at the beginning, and then update as I went.
Not realizing when you've bitten off more than you can handle will lead to a very large, very unfinished project! If you're ever unsure what you want to do, or even how to achieve it, take some time and look at what others have done before. The content Wildcard has put into the ADK is the best place to start! Just like the tip I had for learning the basics of the tools, once you learn how something works, it's fairly simple to move on to experimenting and changing those pieces. And always be patient! I was ready to give up on the Rose Window in my mod a few times but it's my favorite piece and I just kept working on it until I finally had something that worked the way it was supposed to.
Thanks for the tips hogs! We really appreciate it and thank you once again for this very detailed interview, keep up the great work with your mod! Is there anything you’d like to say before we wrap it up?
I wanted to thank everyone that has been a part of my mod's community so far! I try to respond to everyone and there have been some great ideas for things I never thought possible! It still amazes me to have so many people enjoy the mod.
That’s it for this week’s Crunch guys! As always if you’ve got anything to share please get in touch and be sure to follow us on Twitter at @survivetheark, Facebook at www.facebook.com/survivetheark and Reddit at www.reddit.com/r/playark
All the best,
Wildcard Jat and the ARK Survival Evolved Team