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Yeah always have contingencies in case the game crashes. Always have a back-up flyer, even if it’s just a moth, in case you have to go back at retrieve a flyer you fell from after logging back in. If you fly around on a quetzal with a tame on a platform saddle, expect freak outs when one of those mini-freezes happens and the tame on the platform temporarily gets left behind. 

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Pros:

The community, making friends etc. Since it's a network of hundreds of servers, and you can travel between them, you get that MMO feeling that you're playing with thousands of other people. People come and go, but there's always people to play with if you want. Also makes trading a interesting activity for that same reason if you're into that.

That's basically it.

In my experience,  everything else are Cons, and I'd highly recommend against it unless you hold the above to such high value that the torture is worth it. examples:

- Constant lag and rubber banding.

- Lag spikes that can last up to a minute or so every 15 minutes the server does a world save

- Frequent disconnects

- Frequent server crashes with downtimes that can be anywhere between 20 minutes to several hours. Some servers crash every hour, especially during breed events. Crashes often lead to loss of full inventory when traveling between servers.

- WC admins/GMs very limited in what support they can give you in regards to loss of dinos etc due to bugs. Don't expect any help.

- Construction spam everywhere, almost impossible to get decent building spots. People spam pillars/foundations to "claim" terrain. This also causes quite a bit of client side lag due to rendering huge bases everywhere.

- Base official rates. Not a big issue if you trade, but if you want to do your own thing, be ready for months of grinding just to get something decent.

Feedback above is based on my own experience playing ~1 year of official PvE. If you're doing PvP instead, some of it may be different.

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3 hours ago, Zapha said:

If you can't deal with the lag, forget it. Every 15 mins a ~30 sec freeze because of backup and the usual rushhour micro freezes always. But it's worth. Much more vital than singleplayer.

U think official lag is bad? I dare u and evryone else, go to legacy gen servers and do all missions.  

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5 hours ago, raventhebob said:

So I've been thinking about moving to official. anyone willing to give me pros and cons of playing on official, and anyone willing to help me start?

The best thing you can do is approach it like it's a brand new game. It uses the same game engine as your single-player game but do not expect it to feel the same.

Other people have given you a pretty good list of things that are different, but there's a big difference between reading about it and experiencing it. Playing this game in single-player mode is like existing in another world compared to playing it on a multi-player server, especially Official servers. There's a pretty good chance that you won't like it at first, which is something that has happened to many people, because it will feel so strange (and there will be some difficulties to getting started). But if your experience doesn't feel great at first, do yourself a favor and give it some time. There are both up's and down's to playing on an Official server and it's easier to see the down's at first, it will take 1-2 months of playing on the Official server before you can really feel what the Official experience is like and to be able to appreciate the benefits that come from a public server.

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Just rent a server with a few friends and beat the game. Official is a nightmare, literally. I would stay far far away from that mess. You will eventually lose everything and you will never get it back. Wildcard will not give you the save file or anything lol. If you like wasting tons of time in a game that already wastes lots of time then go for it. 

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18 hours ago, raventhebob said:

So I've been thinking about moving to official. anyone willing to give me pros and cons of playing on official, and anyone willing to help me start?

edit: Pc steam/epic

I played on a legacy server for about a month before my IP dumped me and I had to go to a hotspot device, sadly ark doesn't like the security from cell phone internets, but still...
First thing I got to say is all the servers have mega tribes on it, and more than likely the spots you will want to build at will prolly be taken. With that said tho, it is easy enough to find somewhere else to build and if you have multiple places you want to build at, this shouldn't be too much of an issue. Just keep in mind, your more than likely to spawn somewhere where everything has been built hard.....behemoth gateways everywhere, mega factories, ect. ect. Be prepared for loading lag.

Next, if its a good PvE server, you might get some assistance from the locals. I seen multiple open cabnets with a sign next to it offering freebies. Metal picks, thatch and wood house buildings, more or less junk from supply drops. Just generic primitive stuffs, but super useful early game. 

Last but not least, and especially due to the next installment of genisis 2, keep your eye's peeled for decaying bases. I got a bunch of goody goodies from dead bases while gen 1 was kicking in and everyone was moveing out......I found 12 vaults with a sign next to it saying free to good home. Never had 60k fiber before, also didn't know an argy could get overloaded with just hide XD

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47 minutes ago, BKJ7 said:

Just rent a server with a few friends and beat the game. Official is a nightmare, literally. I would stay far far away from that mess. You will eventually lose everything and you will never get it back. Wildcard will not give you the save file or anything lol. If you like wasting tons of time in a game that already wastes lots of time then go for it. 

all my mates play pvp .-.

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PVE on official is (my view) really not cool: Spawn into a huge cluster of  walls and stuff, try and walk / swim out of that cluster to lay down a fire place (so the cold don't kill you). Die - from environment or AI dinos - Rinse and repeat.

PVP I have played a while on "Small Tribes" Servers and they used to be pretty cool. Peeps (sometimes) helped newbies, and if you done the hide a bit story you could progress quite far. Lately however (again my view), you gonna spawn, get to like level 40, and try and catch a Petra (or whatever) And while you tied down taming your stuff some dude on a lv 450 mana will waste you .... And the guy is not a regular on the server (from global chat, just some arbitrary guy)

The best Fun I've had out of ark is running my own servers - I know a bit around tcpip and etc. and I have for several years hosted UnOfficial games - Mostly with my mates playing, but with the odd beach-bob spawning in .... I run with what I think are official small tribe settings. Yeah its a mission to keep the server machine updated with patches - but hey its better than single player where all you can meet is no one!

So if you want to locally host a server, or wanna a unofficial agreement to run a persistent open unofficial serve) gimme a PM

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12 hours ago, DirkInSA said:

The best Fun I've had out of ark is running my own servers

That's admin fun, not player fun. I saw this often in many online games: A player had fun playing the game, became a mod or admin or made his own server ... and then he wasn't a player anymore. He used his new "superpowers" a few weeks or months, becomes bored and vanished.

I have played many games in my life, with and without cheats and the worst you can do is using cheat consoles, they ruin the true experience. It needs discipline to not use the cheat console if there is one. There are always lame excuses why to use it anyway, "it's a bug", "i want only test something", and earlier and later you will use the console.

That's the reason why I play official. You can't cheat! That's the true experience!

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As someone who played both single player, unofficial and pvp over the years but ended up back on official PVE, and stayed there, I'll try and explain why.

The people. The trading. The longevity.

Those are the big draws, why people end up on official PVE for literally years.

It feels like a completely different game compared to the other modes, there are challenges:-

 - lag can be a problem on some servers (not all, it's worth checking out servers via battlemetrics to see which are 'crashers', which are overpopulated)

- pillar / base spam is a thing but pillars can also be a blessing (you'll understand why once you've played pve for a while, 80% of pillars are just players placing a reasonable amount around their own base for reduce lag in the area and stop griefers building too close, others are to protect important resources. Some tho are intended to grief others, those can be reported and if excessive will be removed.)

- the grind - no short cuts on official. Although much better than it used to be, prepare to work for everything you want.

- the bugs. If you lose something to a bug, that's it, it's gone. WC will replace characters lost, but not engrams. Most players learn to play around the bugs and hardly notice them anymore - have a back up of everything. No kind admin swooping in to help, no reverting to old save.

All in all though I would recommend it. I regularly take breaks and just refresh my base timers once a week but when I return it's all still there, I've had some dinos 4+ years, unofficial just can't offer that. I've made good friends, seen massive dramas, can always find someone to run bosses with (discord is your friend), bought OP dinos for a few hours farming (again discord is your friend) - I have 100's of servers i can move around freely (after 15mins lol) to find my perfect base spot. No-one ever ask me for $'s to help with server costs, no-one tells me how to play or where to play - we are all playing under the same rules.

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I've played on official since day 1 of Ark. You can see my posts, quite literally, over the years. I'd completely advise against it:

 

  • Servers are never stable
  • There is always the possibility your server could be marked as one being "repurposed" for a new map or something else which means you have to move off the server.
  • There is no company or GMs who regularly monitor the servers, enforce rules, etc. You can read into anything you like on these forums, but the positives posted by people about how this or that was done by WC on an official server are slim to none.
  • The servers are generally already pillared to hell in any/most reasonable spots.
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On 9/5/2021 at 9:23 AM, Zapha said:

That's admin fun, not player fun. I saw this often in many online games: A player had fun playing the game, became a mod or admin or made his own server ... and then he wasn't a player anymore. He used his new "superpowers" a few weeks or months, becomes bored and vanished.

I have played many games in my life, with and without cheats and the worst you can do is using cheat consoles, they ruin the true experience. It needs discipline to not use the cheat console if there is one. There are always lame excuses why to use it anyway, "it's a bug", "i want only test something", and earlier and later you will use the console.

That's the reason why I play official. You can't cheat! That's the true experience!

Mmmmmm I do get your point - but if you got a crowd of mates that WANT to play and not be troubled by the Official  issues ....

(sorry I dunno how to quote a person instead of a post)
As https://survivetheark.com/index.php?/profile/129772-luizza/ @Luizza says there are downsides around longevity and as you says there (may) be issues around cheating . But if you running on a pvt (no hire - home hosted) server you and the peeps that play there can thrash it out (preferably over a beer)

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On 9/2/2021 at 9:52 AM, raventhebob said:

So I've been thinking about moving to official. anyone willing to give me pros and cons of playing on official, and anyone willing to help me start?

edit: Pc steam/epic

I recommend giving it a try. I find official PVE better than single player. The pros is you will never feel alone.  Even if you don't participate in the chat box it can be entertaining to read.  I also like travelling around just to look at other people's buildings and get ideas for my own bases.  And as long as people see you putting in the effort to work yourself through the many challenges... they will help.  Just please don't be that noob that starts asking for free stuff on day 1.  About the only con I can think of besides lag is the landscape is not as natural and not as pretty as single player because of the pillars, but I got used to it.  

A good strategy I like to use on new maps (because of pillaring) is to focus on gathering resources to build a raft.  Turn it into a house boat and live on it for the first week or so.  Explore the beaches.  Maybe you find a good spot, maybe not.  But somewhere along the way you can tame a ptera and explore inland.  There is generally good land to be had once you get over that first hill.  Put some of the early stats into fortitude so you can look along the edges of colder regions.  I have found some of my favorite locations on the edge of snow with no neighbors to box me out.

 

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