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Jen

FAQ & Basic Guideline Thread

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Hey Survivors!

Welcome to a short F.A.Q and Basic Guidelines Thread for ARK: Survival of the Fittest. This will be updated constantly to include more information, tips, tricks and extra resources for you to learn from. Have a look through the contents and just ctrl+f whichever topic you’re interested in.

Contents
*What is ARK: Survival of the Fittest?
*What are the different game modes available?
*You mentioned Official Game Modes, what did you mean by this?
*FREE FOR ALL
*2-PLAYER TRIBE
*4-PLAYER TRIBE
*6-PLAYER TRIBE
*LOBBY SYSTEM
*Why do I not see any servers in the lobby selection?
*There are different scores associated with the lobby, what does it mean and which one should I join?
*People are leaving the lobby during travelling, this means I cannot get a full game!
*Joining a game!
*Hotkeys
*Cosmetic Items
*Tribe Setup
*How do I create a tribe?
*How do I invite others to my tribe or join another tribe?
*Tribe Flags
*In game: Need to know
*UI
*Evolution Events
*Bosses
*Changes to the Game
*Rewards
*Survivors League
*Tips
*BattlEye, Crashes, and Game Settings
*Extra Resources

*What is ARK: Survival of the Fittest?

ARK: SotF is a M.O.S.A. - a Multiplayer Online Survival Arena - that Studio Wildcard designed for the burgeoning wild west of eSports. A spin-off from the most popular open-world Early Access game on Steam ARK: Survival Evolved, ARK: Survival of the Fittest (SotF) pits up to 72 combatants in an action-packed struggle for survival where players are ultimately pushed into an epic final showdown where only one “Tribe” will make it out alive. 

*What are the different game modes available?

When launching up ARK: Survival of the Fittest, the first thing you’ll notice is that you have the options to play RANKED or UNRANKED

RANKED servers are those provided by Studio Wildcard where you can earn points for your placement in games to get yourself on the survivor’s league leaderboards and earn awesome in-game cosmetics!

UNRANKED servers are unofficial servers which are provided by players and hosts within the ARK Community. They may not conform to the traditional game-modes that Studio Wildcard hosts, so be careful as your experiences in these game whilst wholly enjoyable may not match the experience you would have on an Official Server!

*You mentioned Official Game Modes, what did you mean by this?

When selecting PLAY RANKED you are prompted with the option to play 1 of four different game modes. These are:

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Each of these modes have a different limit to how many players are able to play at a time, the maximum tribe size, as well as different rates, possible changes to the tech tree, how players level their engrams, and a difference in the evolution events that are available. Below I’ll go through core-differences in each game mode, so you can see which you would enjoy the most - though give them all a shot as they differ from each other!

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This is the *FREE FOR ALL game mode. It consists of a maximum of 25 players and you are limited to single-person tribes. This is our fast-paced game mode where all ENGRAMS are unlocked at level one, so your only gate to crafting items further up your tech-tree would be crafting materials. The out-of-zone barrier is a lot deeper into the ARK due to the limited time available on this match.

As this is our fast-paced mode, the game rates have been tremendously increased so that you will gain experience a lot quicker, as well as gather resources and tame a lot quicker. Other changes which have been made also include the removal of a few evolution events. The only evolution events you will see in this game more are the following (have a look further down this FAQ / Guide to see what the different evolution events are):

  • The Swarm
  • Mega Heat
  • Mega Cold
  • Mega Fog
  • Carno Drop
  • Herbivore Drop
  • Supply Overload
  • Double Taming
  • Acid Rain
  • Hail to the King

In this game mode there have been specific balance adjustments made to structures, so that they take increased damage from Dinos, an increased EXP reward for killing other players, and metal structures as well as anything crafted through a fabricator has been removed from the game. There is no night-time in version of SotF, so you will not see the survivors reveal which occurs at midnight.

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This is the *2-PLAYER TRIBE game mode. It consists of a maximum of 40 players and you are limited to two-player tribes, however if you so wish you could attempt to win a match as a solo player. The rates have been adjusted to compensate for the extra member on your team, as well as the increased game length. Similarly to FFA, the out-of-zone barrier is a lot further in, however not as much as in FFA. 

The rates for this game mode have also been adjusted to compensate for faster gameplay, they’re not as high as FFA however you will still gather much quicker and tame much quicker than the 4-player or 6-player game modes, due to the limited time and tribe size. The Evolution events that are present in this game mode are the following:

  • The Swarm
  • Mega Heat
  • Mega Cold
  • Mega Fog
  • Carno Drop
  • Herbivore Drop
  • Supply Overload
  • Double Taming
  • Acid Rain
  • Superloot Crate
  • Food of the Gods
  • Survivor Tracker
  • Survivors Reveal
  • Predators Night
  • Beast Within
  • Harvest Bounty
  • Harvest Famine
  • ARKtic Monkeys
  • Day & Night Swap
  • Hail to the King

All items that are craftable in SotF are available in this game mode. However you do not begin the game with all items unlocked, you must gain levels to unlock items further down the tech tree, however there is no need to spend engram points - they will automatically unlock as you gain levels. Once you obtain enough experience points, make sure to put a point in your stats to make sure that you actually level up and obtain the next set of items.

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This is the *4-PLAYER TRIBE game mode. It consists of a maximum of 60 players and you are limited to four-player tribes, however if you so wish you could attempt to win a match as a less than four player tribe. The rates have been adjusted to compensate for the extra members on your team, as well as the increased game length. Similarly to FFA & Two Player Tribes, the out-of-zone barrier is a lot further in, however not as much as in the other two games modes. 

The rates for this game mode have also been adjusted to compensate for the extra members on your team, so they’re not as high as FFA or two-player tribes however you will still gather much quicker and tame quicker than 6-player game mode, due to the limited time and tribe size. The Evolution events that are present in this game mode are the following:

  • The Swarm
  • Mega Heat
  • Mega Cold
  • Mega Fog
  • Carno Drop
  • Herbivore Drop
  • Supply Overload
  • Double Taming
  • Acid Rain
  • Superloot Crate
  • Food of the Gods
  • Survivor Tracker
  • Survivors Reveal
  • Predators Night
  • Beast Within
  • Harvest Bounty
  • Harvest Famine
  • ARKtic Monkeys
  • Day & Night Swap
  • Hail to the King

All items that are craftable in SotF are available in this game mode. However you do not begin the game with all items unlocked, you must gain levels to unlock items further down the tech tree, however there is no need to spend engram points - they will automatically unlock as you gain levels. Once you obtain enough experience points, make sure to put a point in your stats to make sure that you actually level up and obtain the next set of items. You will notice that EXP for killing players and the rate at which structures are destroyed is not as high in this mode as it would be on FFA or 2-player tribes.

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This is the *6-PLAYER TRIBE game mode. It consists of a maximum of 72 players and you are capped to six-player tribes, however if you so wish you could attempt to win a match as a less than six player tribes. The rates have been adjusted to compensate for the extra members on your team, as well as the increased game length. The out-of-zone extends the furthest in this game mode to compensate for the increased game length.

The rates for this game mode have also been adjusted to compensate for the extra members on your team, so they’re not as high as the other game modes. The Evolution events that are present in this game mode are the following:

  • The Swarm
  • Mega Heat
  • Mega Cold
  • Mega Fog
  • Carno Drop
  • Herbivore Drop
  • Supply Overload
  • Double Taming
  • Acid Rain
  • Superloot Crate
  • Food of the Gods
  • Survivor Tracker
  • Survivors Reveal
  • Predators Night
  • Beast Within
  • Harvest Bounty
  • Harvest Famine
  • ARKtic Monkeys
  • Day & Night Swap
  • Hail to the King

Unlike the other game modes, the 6-player tribes also contains the special one-time evolution event, which will occur half way through the game mode to summon a special boss at random. The boss will shortly appear after the announcement on the center platform, ready for players to tame. They are stationary and unaggressive until tamed. Players are able to tame them by interacting with their inventory, similarly to other creatures - all you need to do is give them food. Each boss has it’s own benefits, and it’s tamable by anyone. The last tribe to have placed food in the inventory of the bosses is the tribe who currently owns the tame, when the taming meter hits 100%, the tribe who owns the tame will have successfully tamed the boss. Further down, we’ll go through the explanation of the different bosses that currently exist in SotF.

All items that are craftable in SotF are available in this game mode. However you do not begin the game with all items unlocked, you must gain levels to unlock items further down the tech tree, however there is no need to spend engram points - they will automatically unlock as you gain levels. Once you obtain enough experience points, make sure to put a point in your stats to make sure that you actually level up and obtain the next set of items. You will notice that EXP for killing players and the rate at which structures are destroyed is not as high in this mode as it would be on the other game modes.

Now that you’ve learnt about the game modes, you’ll probably need to know how to get into a match!

*LOBBY SYSTEM

After selecting the game mode you’d like to play, you’ll be placed into a lobby selection screen where you will see a list of player-created lobbies, or have the option to create your own. 

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Select a lobby you’d like to join and once that lobby hits the maximum amount of players for it’s size (each game-mode has it’s perspective amount) players will then begin travelling to a server.

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Travelling basically means that you’ll start the connection process. This is all automatic! A host does not start the game. The game will launch once a lobby is full and once it has found a server to place you in, generally this won’t take longer than a minute or so after filling up. The rate at which it takes to fill up will be based upon the game mode of course, FFA tends to be more popular as the games are shorter, whereas 6 Player-tribe games tend to be more coordinated so it may take a while to fill up, as well as the fact that the matches are larger.

When you’re in the lobby, you’ll see the average game rating which will help determine how much SCORE you earn when finishing the game, who is in your match, where it is hosted, as well as the top rated players in the game mode.

*Why do I not see any servers in the lobby selection?

This could be because no one has created a lobby in your specific region, the servers have recently updated so people are downloading the patch or there are no open lobbies. The solution to this is very simple, just create a lobby and hang out for a bit whilst it fills up. To create a lobby, select the Create a Lobby button on the bottom middle of your screen.

*There are different scores associated with the lobby, what does it mean and which one should I join?

The scores associated to the lobbies are the average rating of the players in that lobby. Generally you will want to join a lobby that is closer to your skill level, or higher than it to earn more score for the game (based on your placement of course). The score just determines the games thoughts on the skill of your opponents at that current time. The score is based on an average system so there may be a few players above and below that number.

*People are leaving the lobby during travelling, this means I cannot get a full game!

When the travelling process begins, you will start to see names vanish off the list. This does not mean they are leaving the game or the lobby, this means they are being transported to the server. The speed at which you travel compared to others may coincide with your hard-drive speed (SSD will allow you to travel quicker). Just stay patient and soon you’ll begin to join them in the match. If however you have not began the travelling process yourself, just close out of the game and upon restart you will see the option to rejoin the ranked game or to forfeit.

*Joining a game!

Now that you’ve joined a match successfully, you can begin your first steps towards becoming the fittest survivor! Before the match launches, players are placed into a pre-game lobby so they can get setup with their hotkey bars, create their character, select what cosmetic items they’d like to wear, create their tribe, invite members to their tribe, set up their tribe flag and make sure that they’re happy with their current in game settings!

*Hotkeys

Before the game launches you can select the craftables tab in your inventory and drag pre-selected engrams onto your hotkey bar to have quick access to them during the game. This is more commonly used in FFA as you have all engrams available to you, so you can preemptively select what you’d like to use in the match immediately. Therefore saving you time during actual gameplay.

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*Cosmetic Items

Whilst playing Survival of the Fittest, as you gain score and win matches you will unlock a variety of cosmetic items which you can equip during the pre-game lobby or keep in your inventory for the match. They can be accessed via selecting the cosmetic inventory option on the top left of your inventory and dragging the items from the cosmetic-storage, into your inventory.

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*Tribe Setup

A tribe is necessary to play the game mode. Different game modes have different maximum tribe sizes and on unranked / unofficial servers, these vary even further! On Official Ranked servers you will find that the maximum tribe sizes are 1 / 2 / 4 and 6. Players MUST create a tribe at the beginning of the match to ensure that they can successfully be moved to the platform. Those who do not create a tribe, will be removed from the game and not able to play.

*How do I create a tribe?

To create a tribe, simply press the “L” (default) on your keyboard. This will open up the UI where you are able to name your tribe. Once you’ve named it, press accept and you have now successfully created a tribe and will be able to play the match.

*How do I invite others to my tribe or join another tribe?

To join a tribe, have someone in that tribe run up to your body and hold the interaction key. This defaults to E. Once they have held it for long enough, they will see a wheel which will allow them to invite you to their tribe. 

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To accept the invite, hold E whilst facing their character and make sure you select the Accept Tribe Invite button on the wheel. You do this by mousing over it and after a few seconds, you’ll be able to join.

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*Tribe Flags

In ARK: SotF when a creature has been tamed, it will automatically receive a saddle (if mountable) and will also automatically gain a tribe flag. The tribe flag is a logo you can set up in the bubble pre-game. 

To create a tribe flag just open up your tribe menu with the “L” key and select the Tribe Menu open. This will allow you to set a pre-existing saved tribe flag, or create a new one with an insane amount of colours available for you to choose from! You can save designs, as well as load them in.

Once you’ve got the picture you’d like to use as your tribe flag, make sure to set it in game so it appears when you kill other opponents and on your tames!

If you want to create a flag from an image, you can use a ARK Paint Converter program: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=518296250

Or using an online converter: http://www.ark-survival.net/en/image-to-board-sign-pnt-converter/

With these, choose the Canvas option for a 256x256 size. Once you have your .pnt file created, this .pnt file should be saved as name_TribeFlag_C.pnt where name is anything you want it call your flag. The should be saved into the following location: 

\Steam\steamapps\common\ARK SOTF\ShooterGame\Saved\MyPaintings

Once in the game lobby, press L to open the Tribe Manager. Create a tribe, and choose Set Tribe Flag. You will now be provided with the flag painting screen. In addition to uploading an imagine, you can draw your flag by hand here (make sure to Save Tribe Flag, and then Set Tribe Flag). To upload your pre-made image, choose Set Tribe Flag and select the name of the flag from the list. Your flag will now be set. Anyone in your tribe is able to set the tribe flag.

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Now that you’ve successfully joined or created a tribe, you’ll be moved to the platform when the launch timer at the top of the screen hits zero and you can begin playing!

*In game: Need to know

For this section of the FAQ and Basic Guidelines, I am going to outline some of the core things about SotF that you should know when playing the match, as well as some tips to get you from a Bob to Joe!

*UI

Since the Total Conversion of ARK: Survival of the Fittest and compared to the main-game, there have been some significant UI changes made.

In the bubble before the game starts, you’ll be able to see the untribed contestants on the right hand side of the screen and also denoted by the sad face over top of their character's’ head, so it’s a good way to keep track of people who need invites or getting others to join your team - the number of tribes currently made and their members, let you know what you're up against! And the number of tribes and players currently connected at the top, including the timer til the game begins the transportation to the platform :).

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Once you’re in game, you’ll notice that the notifications for gathering items have changed, as well as the position of status effects and some new additions to the game!

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Status effects are now displayed in the top-lefthand corner of the game, remember to press and hold H to get a more detailed view on what each one does.

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Death notifications, as well as being displayed in the sky as billboards, are also placed in your chatbox!

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In the top right hand corner, you’ll see the last evolution event that was set off so you’re able to keep track of what’s going on and when!

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*Evolution Events

In ARK: Survival of the Fittest - there are mysterious evolution events that randomly occur at different points of the game. These evolution events can impact gameplay through their interaction with players. There are a large number of events and not all of them exist in every mode, but here are the ones that are available:

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*Bosses

In the 6-player mode of Survival of the Fittest and on some Unofficial Servers - you may run into the Bosses! There are currently 3 that exist in Survival of the Fittest, these are:

The Dragon

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The largest creature in the game! An enormous dragon which has the ability to fly around the map and breath fire down upon it’s victims.

The Megapithecus

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A gigantic ape, despite its huge size it can move at a very rapid pace and can throw large boulders at its opponents.

The Broodmother

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The Spider Queen, not as tanky as the other bosses but has the special ability to spawn smaller spiders, which are essentially free tames!

The bosses are not permanent and will vanish a short while after tamed, so make use of them! However the Spider Queen has an advantage in that her spiders will remain after she takes her leave.

*Changes to the Game

There have been a lot of changes made to ARK: Survival of the Fittest from the main-game to make it a viable competitive MOSA. There have been a lot of adjustments:

  • The requirements required to craft an item
  • The biomes available on the map
  • The resource spread throughout the map
  • Dinosaur base stats and leveling stats
  • A lot of items have been removed from SotF as they wouldn’t be used
  • Narcoberries will drop at an increased amount
  • Weapons are automatically picked up and placed in your hotkey bar

The best way to learn is to dive into the game and have a couple of playthroughs. There's a lot of unofficial servers online with adjusted rates that you can check out if you don't want to dive into the ranked matches right away! Plus loads of content creators are constantly streaming and making videos for you to see the differences between this and the main-game. Soon we'll be releasing the SotF Dev Kit which will include numbers so you can get a real in-depth look at the changes.

*Rewards

Whilst playing ARK: Survival of the Fittest, winning matches and earning score - you can unlock special cosmetic items! These cosmetics can be worn in your SotF games and you can pick them up during the bubble, we went over that bit earlier in the *Cosmetic Items section of the thread. 

We’ll also be (in the future) looking into transporting some of the cosmetics you earn through SotF to the main game. If you’d like to take a look at what’s available right now, launch your game and click on the REWARDS button on the right hand side!

*Survivors League

More information to be posted on this later as the league has not yet begun! 

We will announce the start date of the league when we are ready, have to make sure the game is in the place we'd like it to be first ;)

*Tips

More information to be posted on this later

*BattlEye, Crashes, and Game Settings

BattlEye

You will need to run BattlEye to play Official Ranked Servers and some Unofficial Servers if they so choose to use that option. BattlEye is an Anti-Cheat tool which has been specifically modified to support ARK and ARK: SotF. It is under constant iteration and will continuously work to prevent cheaters from gaining unfair advantages in game via bans and blocking of third party programs.

There have been some concerns raised regarding BattlEye and privacy, if you’d like to read a response to that, have a look here: <steam url>

Game Settings

If you find that the game is not running as smoothly as you like, or you receive an error message stating that the game has not been cooked properly. When launching ARK: Survival of the Fittest via steam, make sure you select the option to launch with SM4 and Low Memory. This will launch the game in an older shader model that is less performance intensive.

There are also multiple in-game graphic options which you can alter to help improve the performance that you have whilst playing SotF. The heaviest options are: Resolution Scale, Shadows and Ground Clutter. If you’re using legacy hardware, it’s recommended that you turn these down for a smoother experience!

*Extra Resources

If you’d like to check out some extra resources for SotF info, here are some guides, tutorials or Lets Plays you can look over:

 

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Hi Jen,

You stated on March 22nd:

*Survivors League

More information to be posted on this later as the league has not yet begun! 

We will announce the start date of the league when we are ready, have to make sure the game is in the place we'd like it to be first ;)

 

Is there any update yet as when it will officially begin?  When it starts will there be a reset to stats or will we start where we are when it begins?  Trying to figure out if it's still safe to practice and possibly tank my score or if I need to get down to business :-)

Thanks,

Alamo

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