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Found 22 results

  1. So, I spawned in Easy Zone South 2 (I think). I had a pretty good run. Did the stuff. Punched the trees. Killed an Ovis that was conveniently right next to our spawning point. I had a shirt and cloth pants by the time my tribemate logged on, at which point I gave him a few extra spears, a hatchet, and a pickaxe. We went through the general motions and established a sort of camp, with a campfire and a few storage boxes. I set out for something to tame, like a dodo or lystro or something. As we were travelling, we ended up on a cliff overlooking the beach, and lo and behold! A shipwreck, complete with crates with amazing loot! I started down a path but misjudged a jump, instead landing on the ground below the cliff and taking a bunch of fall damage. I whacked a few crates, getting two metal hatchets, a metal pick, a crossbow, some cooked and spoiled meat, scrap metal, and wood. A pretty good haul. I left the crates deeper underwater, because it was getting cold and dark, and sharks were always a problem. We started making our way back, and promptly got lost in the all encompassing darkness. We decided to just settle down for the night in one spot, gather and eating berries as we got hungry. And then, all of a sudden, I heard loud, stomping footsteps and the world started shaking. I looked up just in time to see the massive head of an R-giga pop out of the darkness, say hello for a second, and then bite. The last thing I saw were the foot long teeth of the giga. I decided to respawn a little bit away from my death point, so I could eventually get my stuff back. Within 10 seconds, I had been mauled to death by terror birds and also attacked by titanomyrmas. I then decided to spawn in Easy Zone north, which turned out to be a mistake, as I froze to death within minutes. I then decided to quit my Fjordur adventure for the moment, and return to it later. This is most certainly not over. Good luck, and happy ARKing!
  2. My latest game play adventure in Ark Survival Evolved. The map; The official release of Forjor. Settings; Single player with taming, harvesting, leveling set at 3X. MODS; Ultra Stacks. Kraken’s Better Dinos. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered. Echos Viking Structures, Marnimods wildlife. Kraken’s Better Dinos is a mod that enhances most of the abilities of the Ark’s creatures. Herbivores, such as a Doed, can now harvest berries. New tek creatures such as a Tek Trike and Giga are now in the map. So are several variations of new and useful creatures. New types of attacks are available on some dinos such as a stomp by the Bronto. Wild creatures may run away if they are badly hurt. It also offers a combo preserving bin, cooker, workbench that allows for the crafting of special foods from the special meat that some creatures will have when killed or from the milk of certain tamed mammals. Early, but less capable saddles are available for some creatures that have late more expensive to craft ones. Extensions can be made for platform saddles and rafts. Most interesting is the Valerian Reins that can be crafted from various rare materials. When placed on a flying creature, it enhances their speed, maneuverability, and stamina. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered uses special workbenchs that allow you to craft building sections in those workbench thus freeing the player to continue to gather resources or start construction of structures. Like S+, you can pick up those pieces later. Foundations will also stack. Walls are 1/3 higher then Vanilla or S+ walls which gives your player more head room in placing storage chest and other items. You do not need to learn the individual pieces in this mod, only the three crafting workbenches which produce the equivalent of wood, stone and metal structures using the same building materials and amounts. That will allow me to save up those engram points for other useful items early on. Marnimods Wildlife spawn in at logical places in logical amounts. Each of her more modern creatures has a special taming requirement. Echo’s Viking Structures provides a range of Viking lodges, Furniture, and other useful items such as the Viking Longboat. Very important if you are installing the official map and have the mod map Viking_P installed in your Ark map listings. If you have the mod map version installed on your PC, It is highly recommended that you unsubscribe to that map, delete your Viking_P saves in the SavedArksLocal folder, and delete the 1838617463 mod ID folder from the Content/Mods folder to recover some disk space before downloading the official mod. Since there have been changes made to the map, you could run into issues if you try to use your renamed Viking_P save on the official map. You can always upload your character, important tames, and hard to get resources to an obelisk before deleting the mod map. Still, just prepare to start from a new or downloaded character. There is no guarantee that you won't run into issues if you have both the official and mod map installed. Note, selecting the new map for download will start Ark, but the map will not appear until it is downloaded. Just exit the game and wait until Steam indicates that the map has finished downloading. Then start playing Ark and the map will appear at the top of the non story map listings. I will be playing this adventure totally unscripted. While I will have specific goals in mind for my adventure, what happens in this map will be whatever the game play presents to me. Comments will be included from my past game play on this map to compare what happens in this adventure. Gameplay to come in the next posting
  3. Put your favorite ARK memes here!
  4. I'm new here, I don't know how this site works, I don't know anything really beyond what I want to inquiry. Basically, I want to make a fiction survival book on dinosaurs and need information on Mezizoic era, Ice age, and perhaps Precamberian creatures. I have a few sources; Wikipedia, official archeology sites, perhaps some trusted video makers on platforms. Back to my point, I want to know if I can use Ark as a source of information on dinosaur behaviors (since we don't especially know how such creatures habits were enacted) without going through the struggle (once again) of finding an official on here (on mobile so it sucks more to navigate) to get explicit permisson. Mind you, I plan to have an entire page or chapter dedicated to sourcing and citing at the very front and first page, so credit will be given immediately upon opening the work.
  5. Ark Survival Evolved; The Genesis Trip, A Most Strange Adventure of Survival. This story is inspired by the present undertaking of Elan Musk to build star ships capable of placing settlements on Mars, the political turmoil that took place in the later half of 2021, the newly released paid DLC of Ark Survival Evolved known as Genesis 2, and the upcoming version of the new survival game Ark 2. It will be developed as more game play takes place in Genesis 2 and especially Ark 2 once it has been released. This is a story of a fictitious flight aboard one of Elan Musk’s Starships as it is heading to mars with a cargo of engineers and their supplies that are part of his continuing project to build a colony that will eventually support one million settlers on the Red Planet. After their ship is destroyed by a meteor, as they are coming in to land, they find themselves reborn on a gigantic interstellar colony ship that has been taken over by a mutated evil scientist from the 19th century. After they have escaped from that crippled ship, they find themselves fighting for their survival in a strange prehistoric world in a star system in some unknown part of the Galaxy. This story is fictional, the character involved fictional, the early mission based upon known information of the planned Mars missions, the rest based upon Ark Lore without the benefit of the normal game play. WARNING! Current divisive politics are involved in the beginning of this story that may not be accurate. The Ship’s Crew; (may add details to them in the future.) 1. Commander Pike – Mission Coordinator. 2. Mary Pike – Pilot and flight officer for 007. 3. Nathen Scott – Flight Engineer. 4. Jane Conway – Crew Leader. 5. Carlos Gonzales – Construction Crew Chief 6. Dr. Sandra Mays – Medical Technician and Mission Biologist. 7. Dennis Lytle – Computer Technician. 8. Nancy Conway – Navigator. 9. Mike Allen – Chief Mechanic. 10. David Evens – Electrical Engineer. 11. Ahab Sorus – Geologist. 12. Sarah Wright – Nutritious. 13. Danny Washington – Physiologist. 14. Carol Thompson – Physical Conditioning. 15. Dr. Leslie McCoy – Medical Doctor. 16. Margaret Thatcher – Environmental Engineer. 17. Tom Jefferson – Botanist and hydro farming technician. 18. Jeffery Claus – Mining rig drilling specialist. 19. Julie Sorus – Chemist and wife of Ahab. 20. Conner Wilharm – Construction Technician. 21. Clark Camp – Rigger. 22. Tammy Sellis – Mechanical Engineer. 23. Macy Nunn – Metallurgy and Machinist Tech. 24. Stella Lox – Solar Energy Production Specialist. 25. Terry Taylor – Atmospheric Maintenance Specialist. 26. Stella Lopez – Communications Expert. 27. Dawn Faucett – Waste Management and Recycling. 28. John Jerry – Construction Specialist. 29. Laura Schultz – Construction Specialist. 30. Tina Nicholson – Construction Specialist. Chapter 1, A Mission to Mars. This story starts on December 6th 2030. Afters years of preparation, the first large colony fleet of Starships have been launched into earth orbit and are being refueled, manned, and made ready to make the seven month trip to Mars. Their mission, to expand the budding new colony started there two years ago. With the 2031 launch window being open soon to send ships to the Red Planet, this first large scale fleet of ships, carrying the skilled technicians and tons of cargo needed for that major expansion, will start to leave Earth’s orbit to make the long journey to Mars, enter into Mars orbit, and land at the new colony site. 2024 had seen the first test flights of the concept of landing automated Starship on Mars. There had been a failure in landing the first ship, when it touched down on an uneven surface and fell over, but later flights, during the week, successfully landed to unload their computer controlled cargo of exploration and mining equipment. In 2027, additional equipment had been sent to the landing site along with the first astronauts to ever land on the Red Planet. Those early pioneers had set up their first structures to test out the process of producing food, air, and rocket fuel from the resources available on Mars. With the success of that mission, 2029 saw another set of launches that brought in a serious number of engineers and equipment to make the budding settlement ready for a larger influx of settlers. With the success of that mission, The go was given for the 2031 launch. That mission, involving 100 Starships with their technicians and supplies, is planned to be the first large scale transfer of settlers to Mars. The mission goal, to establish a self sustaining colony in preparation to support some one million pioneers most of which will spend the rest of their lives living and raising their families on Mars. There had been no shortage of people that wanted to get away from the political turmoil on Earth to start a new life on the Red Planet. The United States and many of it’s European Allies, were headed towards bankruptcy due to spending created inflation, as the political turmoil continued over the mandates caused by the endless varieties of COVID-19, illegal immigration, food and energy supply disruptions, out of control urban crime, serious threats from China to invade Taiwan, hackers from Russia installing cryptolockers on infrastructure computer systems, major silencing of anyone that threatened to expose the political corruption of the career politicians running the country, and Western Government taken over by those career politicians that were well under way in establishing their New World Order under a Russian or Chinese Dictatorship. The Starship Program had continued to get funding and materials both from Elan Musk’s personal wealth, NASA, and rich investors, especially among the super rich that were not supportive of the political party that has seized power and was attempting to confiscate all of their wealth. Therefore many of them, not involved in taking control of the governments of the world, had purchased a ride on one of the 2050 flights to leave Earth and settle in one of the new Mars colonies. With his private security force and the backing of the Texas and Florida Governors, where his spaceports were located, Elan Musk had been able to control who was going to be on those trips thus ensuring that each flight would contain only the skilled people he needed for the construction of the colony. The billionaires financing his project would travel on the 2050 flight when the colony would be self sufficient enough to comfortably accommodate them and their families. Yet, Musk was not alone in this venture to colonize Mars. The Chinese Communist, while having a rocky start with their own version of Starship, have also placed into orbit a fleet of colony ships to take advantage of the same launch window. They were joined by Russian billionaires that had launched a smaller fleet with a similar goal. Establishing colonies of their own in other location on the Red Planet, the official in charge of their program has been coordinating launching with Elan’s fleet. Even though they are competitors in this venture to colonize Mars, they were forced to do so for safety concerns. With thousands of additional refueling tankers in orbit, it became necessary to set up a traffic control system so there are no accidental collisions that could threaten the entire program. The fleet command ship, Starship 007, was like all of the other ships in the fleet scheduled to make the flight that year. With her cargo of skilled technicians and over 100 tons of supplies on board, she had been launched into earth orbit three weeks earlier from Musk’s spaceport in Texas. Commander Pike, Age 42, a veteran of several test orbital flights of Starships, has been placed in charge of this mission. At the age of 18, he had joined the Navy where he was soon serving on board the modern nuclear powered aircraft carriers USS George H W Bush. His military training had advanced to the point where he had been placed in control of flight operations. However, at the end of 2021, he was forced out of the service for refusing to obey a Presidential Mandate. He was soon hired for the Mars Settlement Program where his job became that of fleet commander. For this latest mission, he has remained busy coordinated the positioning and refueling of the 100 Starships that are in orbit waiting for their launch window. He has also been tasked with working with his Chinese counterpart, Wo Chang, and his Russian counterpart, Ivan Sikorsky, in making sure that each fleet of ships have the maneuvering room to prep their ships for the flight. As the preparations get completed, he has flown up on one of the refueling shuttles to take overall command from Starship 007 and be with his wife. Flight officer Mary, age 38, Pike’s newlywed wife, is the commander and pilot of Starship 007. She has received her training in the navy flying carrier based fighter aircraft before being forced out that service in late December of 2021 by that same Presidential Mandate. She was hired a week later to join the Starship program as a pilot in the Mars Settlement Project. Flight Engineer Scott, like all the other engineers on their star ships, has been kept busy with Crew Chief Gonzalez, in refueling operations on 007 and later, in docking the Mars booster rocket to the ship in preparation for the Mars insertion burn. Like Mary, he has been forced out of the military where he worked as a flight mechanic in the Air Force. The same job of docking and refueling is being conducted on the other 99 Starships by their flight engineers as a steady stream of refueling ships are launched into orbit from the two bases in Florida and Texas. With the tight schedule to reach the orbits of the 100 different ships, it is almost non stop work in spite of most of it being under control by the flight computers on board and those in the Spaceport in Texas. Crew leader Jane Conway, age 44, who resigned in protest from the military in 2021 after losing a friend to the disastrous orders given by the White House to withdraw from Afghanistan, is also busy coordinating the inventory and storing of additional supplies that have been brought up by a supply ship docked to 007. It is an important job to be sure that everything is stored in a balanced location and secured for the insertion burn and landing. In addition, the crew on each ship, is made up of an environmental engineer, biologist, medical technician, electronic specialist, navigator, construction engineer, and various other technicians required for the construction and daily operations of the new colony. Many of these personnel had former careers in those fields of their specialties until they were either forced out of their jobs by the COVID-19 mandate in late 2021, or had just plain quit in protest due to job burnout, or from working conditions that soon became impossible for them to continue on their job. All too soon, the launch window has now arrived for sending the fleet to Mars. During this ten day period, a Starship would starts it’s Mars insertion burn at the assigned launch window of it’s orbit. Commander Pike and his Russian and Chinese counterpart coordinate those launches so that each ship will have plenty of maneuvering room for any course corrections needed to achieve Mars Orbit. With all ships successfully underway towards the end of the tenth day, 007 fires her booster at the appointed moment to escape Earth gravity to make it’s way to Mars. Proving the reliability of the Elan Musk design, every ship in the three fleets has been successfully sent on their way. The start of the seven month journey has proceeded smoothly even though the political situation on Earth has kept getting worse. With an energy boycott of Europe by the Russians, an Arab Oil Embargo against the now energy dependent US, and the massing of an invasion fleet by the Chinese around Taiwan, that political unrest is soon threatening to derail the Mars colony project. Still, production has continued on preparing about 200 more Starships for placing into earth orbit for the 2033 launch window, many of which will be used for carrying more then enough food and materials needed for an additional 5 years or more. It has been estimated that such supply runs will need to continue until the colony has become completely sustainable, hopefully by 2050, when everything they need can be manufactured as well as all food grown on Mars in support of the estimated one million colonist that are planned to be making Mars their home by then. However; Early that Spring, the Russians launched their invasion of the Ukraines with the goal of taking complete control of that country. A day later, after NATO is dragged into that war, the Chinese attack Taiwanese military and industrial installations with air and missile strikes. A major sea battle soon erupts between the US, Chinese, and Japanese forces. While the use of nuclear weapons has so far been avoided, so much damage has taken place in the invasion attempt that all three fleets have suffered major losses. The island of Formosa lies in ruins from the bombardment. Facing a major shortage of critical components needed for the construction of the new Starships and the political turmoil a two front war has caused, Musk has arranged for an emergency conference between Commander Pike and his engineers back on Earth. Given the several minute delay due to the distance the ships are now away from the Earth, the conference last for several days. Commander Pike assures Musk that they should be able to continue their mission with enough supplies, along with what they will be able to produce on Mars, should the scheduled 2033 launch end up being delayed for several years. August 18th. 2031. Starship 007 has finally reached Mars having been placed into stable orbit. There, it awaits clearance by Mars control for its landing window as it gets into position to break orbit for descent to land at the colony site. After maneuvering into position, Starship 007 gets it’s clearance to land on pad 15. With the concordance programmed into the ship’s landing computer, the ship’s main engines ignite at the proper moment to start the ship’s descent to the assigned landing pad, a maneuver called a “suicide burn” given that the atmosphere on Mars is much too thin for aerobraking or parachutes to slow down such a large heavy ship for landing. Without warning, the ship is struck by a meteor the size of a baseball. It comes crashing through the forward dome. In a microsecond, it has taken out a support strut causing several of the panoramic windows in the ship to blow out of their supporting frame. The trajectory leaves a baseball size hole through all decks, the cargo hold, and a fuel storage tank in the now crippled ship. With alarm bells screaming, everyone in the observation section of the ship gets sucked out into space. Those down below attempt to stay at their stations. The effort is mostly unsuccessful as internal bulkheads are failing from the rapid pressure imbalance of liquid methane vaporizing inside the lower decks, the fires they cause in the presence of oxygen, and the vacuum of space on the top side. Anything not tied down is flying out the hole left by the missing window. Most of the crew are soon dead from rapid decompression when their space suits get damaged by flying debris. Many others are blown out into space where they die from impact on the Martian surface. Knocked out of it’s landing trajectory by the venting methane that has ignited in what is left of the atmosphere in the crippled ship, 007 ends up crashing into Mars when the few survivors up on the bridge, are unable to regain control of the crippled ship due to the damage done to the control systems and the lost of fuel from the punctured fuel tank. The remaining fuel and liquid oxygen ignites into a fireball upon the high speed impact into the surface forming a crater there. Fortunately, the ship has crashed into a hillside just outside of the colony perimeter sparing it from any major damage. Rescue teams are quickly sent out from the colony command center. They find the smoldering remains of Starship 007 scattered around the impact crater it had made in the hillside. There are no survivors.
  6. This is not a story or anything like that. It's simply humor. With all the frustration Ark can cause, sometimes it's best to pull back and relax. Humor is said to be the best medicine. Aside from being (hopefully) humorous, these will be examples of what can happen when we make an unintended typo, don't take into account words with double meanings, or write things in an ambiguous way. Disclaimer: This humor post is in English. If translated to another language, the humor will be lost. Sorry. First up is a line from an article I read regarding the creatures of Ark, and an example of what can happen when a typographical error slips by. It is about the beaver, and reads as follows: "These creatures are very friendly and will attack you only if you try to acquire resources from a dame they've built, or if you attack them directly." Those are some talented beavers! Next up are a few headlines. They are based on real headlines but I've altered them slightly to give them an Ark twist. The first three are grammar gaffes, and in the last two a word's double meaning wreaks riotous havoc. ENRAGED DODO INJURES SURVIVOR WITH HATCHET MISSING OTTER FOUND BY TREE VELONASAUR SHOOTS MAN WITH KNIFE SPARROW TRIBE GETS SHOT AT NEW TEK BASE NARCOTIC PRODUCTION REACHES NEW HIGH If you like these, I'm sure I can rustle up some more. Feel free to make your own contributions as well.
  7. So, this tale starts off on Herbivore Island, where I've begun building a base for our metal smelting needs. My tribemate's been working on the metal for the industrial forge, and we've got 3,000+ coming along nicely. It's been really darn hard to get all the metal to the raft base, so I devised a plan. I would tame a bronto, which could carry the metal as the anky mined it. So, I set off to tame one. I killed two, a level 20 and a level 35, and decided to tame the lvl 95. I started it with 11 tranq darts in a Mastercraft longneck and 34 or so tranq arrows in a regular crossbow (might have had a better one, but whatevs). I climbed up on my weirdly op Moschops, and started tranquing. My Moschops took the hits as I shot, and I ran out of darts. I switched to the crossbow, and I hardly acknowledged the slowly building stars on my stat counter area. Halfway through, I fall asleep (which is ironic, since, y'know-tranquing bronto). Turns out I was hungry, so I ended up falling off, and the bronto and getting almost killed before I woke up and started munching on some cooked meat. I shot the bronto one more time, and it started running. I exuberantly chased after it, only for the bronto to turn back and beat the absolute crap out of me. I respawned at the raft bed, and went on the direwolf to pick my stuff back up. I had not ran out of arrows, so I decided to continue the taming. I ran out of arrows. The bronto was still awake. I ran. And that's it! It was a pretty good ARK session anyway though, made a bit of progress on the base, tamed a Phiomia for the comp. bin, and also tamed a lvl 130 PT with amazing colors. It was a while since I'd played, so the event creatures were still on from the valentine's event, I think. Also made up our first two cryopods, mined a crap ton of metal, , and also made a pump shotgun. And that was pretty much it. Pretty productive, if you ask me. Also, this is going to be the start of a sort of story, where I compile my tales of fortune and woe. Hoping to get more poly at penguin island next time. Happy ARKing!
  8. My latest game play adventure in Ark Survival Evolved. The map; crystal Isle. Settings; Single player with taming, harvesting, leveling set at 3X. MODS; Ultra Stacks. Kraken’s Better Dinos. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered. Marnimods wildlife. Kraken’s Better Dinos is a mod that enhances most of the abilities of the Ark’s creatures. Herbivores, such as a Doed, can now harvest berries. New tek creatures such as a Tek Trike and Giga are now in the map. So are several variations of new and useful creatures. New types of attacks are available on some dinos such as a stomp by the Bronto. Wild creatures may run away if they are badly hurt. It also offers a combo preserving bin, cooker, workbench that allows for the crafting of special foods from the special meat that some creatures will have when killed or from the milk of certain tamed mammals. Early, but less capable saddles are available for some creatures that have late more expensive to craft ones. Extensions can be made for platform saddles and rafts. There is even a Trike platform saddle available. Most interesting is the Valerian Reins that can be crafted from various rare materials. When placed on a flying creature, it enhances their speed, maneuverability, and stamina. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered uses special workbenches that allow you to craft building sections in them thus freeing the player to continue to gather resources or start construction of structures. Like S+, you can pick up those pieces later. Foundations will also stack. Walls are 1/3 higher then Vanilla or S+ walls which gives your player more head room in placing storage chest and other items. You do not need to learn the individual pieces in this mod, only the three crafting workbenches which produce the equivalent of wood, stone, or metal structures using the same building materials and amounts. That will allow me to save up those engram points for other useful items early on. Marnimods Wildlife spawn in at logical places in logical amounts. They range from rats to elephants. Each of her more modern creatures has a special taming requirement. I will be playing this adventure totally unscripted. While I will have specific goals in mind for my adventure, what happens in this map will be whatever Ark presents to me. Comments will be included from my past game play on this map to compare what happens in this adventure. I don’t plan on doing any boss fights under single player due to the grinding needed to build up a dino army strong enough to take on the Heir Queen Wyvern. Instead, this will be more of an adventure of exploration of the many areas of this map. The first days in Crystal Isle. My character, given the name of Robinson Crusoe, starts his adventure in the Southwest Tropical region of this map. There are several spawn points in that region where one will spawn on the beach. The one exception is a spawn point that will place your character on top of a mesa next to a small pond. Being just sheer cliffs on it’s edge, there is no way off of this area on foot other then a ramp in the far back that leads into a dangerous swamp. All stones in the Southwest Tropical only yield stone, flint and sand. Metal nodes are scare and hard to find in this area. On this first day, he wakes up on the ground on top of the mesa. This spawn point contains a small pond nearby for water. Generally, the only dangerous creatures on this mesa in the past have been the dilos and the pesky seagulls. I know that getting enough hide to get started with basic tools is going to be difficult. Finding metal bearing rocks will involve a long trip around the mesa to find the path to it’s top where several metal rocks are located. This adventure starts out with several dodos in the area, a level 20 Parasaur, and a level 95 Tek Parasaur. The first tasks at hand is to get leveled up, get some weapons, build a starter shelter, and place down a bed. Until I can unlock the Settler’s Workbench, I will unlock only a thatch foundation that I can use for crafting items and a bed saving the engram points to get weapons and crafting items as quickly as possible. The three Dodos are quickly dispatched for meat and hide. Half of the meat is soon cooking with the other half split for spoiling. With leveling up to unlock the wood tier, the Settler’s Workbench is unlocked and a 2x2 wooden hut is built for a starter shelter. More Dodos have spawned in giving me the hide needed for a bed, mortise and pestle, and a refining forge. With a bola, bow and stone arrows, I decide to take out the Tek Parasaur to get the scrap metal needed for the Better Dino Workbench and basic metal tools. Later, with a saddle made for one, I tame the level 20 Parasaur so that I can have my first utility dino for gathering berries and alerting me of danger nearby. I name her Starter Patty. To make a spyglass, I take Starter patty up into an area where larger crystals are located. The small ones located by the pond cannot be mined. I get the crystal needed for a spyglass along with a rare mushroom. It is the next morning when the scrap metal from the tek parasaur is smelted, the Workbench put in place, and some basic metal tools are crafted. I need to go hunting to get more leather and raw meat. I take along the new crossbow for the hunt. I also take the rare mushroom and flowers along as I know that I have found moschop in the past on that long trip towards the ramp to the swamp. I haven’t traveled far when I spot another mid level tek parasaur and a Level 150 Male Parasaur. I prepare to tame this bad boy. He will be a huge improvement in stats over the present starter one. The bola and take down goes well. With the 3x rates, my new Perry is soon ready for me to continue on. I head back to camp to get the saddle off of Starter Patty as I am short on hide for crafting a second one. I am now ready for that first serious metal run to the top of the mesa using a much stronger parasaur. I level Perry up in weight and melee as his other stats look good. That soon pays off when I run into Dilos near the ramp up to where the metal rocks can be found. Perry dispatched three dilos in short order. They give me more meat and hide along with a low level parasaur the dilos had just killed. I also have observed two Moschops in the area. I’ll come back to see if I can tame one of them after I get the metal back into the refining forge. Some more Dilos are dispatched on the trip back to camp. Making the trip back on foot, I find the two moschops where I had last seen them. One of them is a Level 150 male that asks for my rare mushroom. He is tamed in the one feed thanks to the Better Dino mod. Coming back, I find a low level tek parasaur stuck in the terrain. It is soon chopped up by Bart into scrap metal, oil, and other resources. A Level 145 female Parasaur has spawned in while I was gone on the moschop run. I come back to tame her. That now gives me three Parasaurs and a Moschop as tames by the end of the day. While out exploring the next morning, I find a way to scale the steep terrain above me to reach where the metal rocks can be found. I take Perry up that same path and load him up with metal ore. There are some of those pesky seagulls in the area, but the Krakens mod reduces their agro range so I don’t have to deal with them. The forge is now filled as I now have my full set of metal tools by the end of that day. So far, I have not seen any of the Tropical Wyverns in this area. In past game play, I have spotted them either in the swamp, or up where the metal rocks are. It is hit and miss what will spawn in on this map and when. The only creatures that have showed up so far on this mesa are the dodos, seagulls, low level pteradons, moschops, parasaurs, and dilos. With the Marnimods Wildlife mod installed, chickens and camels should show up in the beach areas of the other spawn point. Most interesting on her camels is they like the yellow berries with one being more then enough to tame a Level 150. They can be ridden with or without a saddle. And, like real camels, they can spit at something when attacked. However, they have poor stamina and are quite squishy with only a stomp attack, the spit doing little damage to it’s target. The next day is spent on a major project. I want to go down directly to the beach below the cliff and back up to where I am camped. I would also like to take a parasaur or moschop down the same way as well. Loading up the Settler’s workbench with wood, I get some foundations, pillars, ceilings, and ladders made to set up temporary scaffolding for constructing a ramp to get down to the beach. It takes a lot of material to construct the stairway and platform steps. Those modded pillars are so much easier to snap to the edge of a ceiling then the default ones. Still, it takes much of the day to construct the stairway that a parasaurs can use to get down to the beach. A raft is then outfitted for further exploration of the area. I quickly find out that sailing towards the interior from the stairway location is not safe. While I have yet to see one, Leeds are an issue on Crystal Isle and can spawn into the interior waterways. A Berry is spotted along the shore at the base of the cliff. The Bolas don’t appear to work to immobilize it. I also spot a Krapro in the water as well as a Sarco on the beach. I take out the Sarco with the new crossbow which yields 285 toughened hide. That will be useful for crafting the Valerian Reins later on for a flier. Two beaver lodges are spotted in the nearby shallows. I’ll raid them later due to being on a raft and the number of beavers I see living close by and in the swamp. A trip is made to a safer island area back away from the swamp. There are chickens along the beach with the Dodos. I mine the area for wood and thatch loading them into the Settler’s Workbench on the raft as I have stripped the camp area of those materials for the stairway up off the beach. Sailing back to the stairway, I find that the Starter Patty is alerting me to some unknown danger up in the camp area. She has spotted something in the pond. It turns out to be a Dimorphion. I have never seen them spawn in this area before. They normally would spawn in the Swamp below the plateau. I take it out with the crossbow from shore as they are a real pain in the butt to tame being only partially useful as a living air conditioner for egg hatching. The next morning, I start sailing along the shore towards the Green Obelisk. I spot some of Marnimods Camels and Elephants along the shore of a large island. Then, I spot a blue Tropical Wyvern that has just landed in the jungle on this island. The spotting scope IDs it as a Level 150 female. Level 150? I have never seen that high a level as a first spawn before on previous plays on this map. They are usually low level ones early on in a single player map. Having just reached Level 76, I decide to make this my first flier with my attempt at a passive tame. Time to prepare for this quest before it despawns from the area or I lose it. I gather up the large stack of crystals the tame will need along with a parachute. Then, I slowly approach the wyvern so that I can get onto her back to start the tame. That is necessary because, even if they are stuck in a tree, they will take off for parts unknown with that first feed. Besides, I don’t have the materials on me to set up a trap as they will usually fly off when you start putting one down. You could also lose the ability to passive tame one if you agro them to get them into a trap. Luck is with me as I am able to stay on her back as she flies all over the Southwest area of the map. Still, even on 3X, this is a long tame and quite a ride until the process has been completed. Finally tamed, I do some hunting with her as I head back to where the raft is. I have her follow me back to the stairway as I sail the raft back, then fly on her to land next to my starter hut. I check out the requirements for the Valerian Reins. I have everything I need except for the organic polymer. A trip will need to be made either to the snow biome to kill penguins, or to the desert area to kill mantis. That will have to wait until the following morning. As it is, the Tropical Wyvern are fast fliers on their own, They can become even better with increased speed, turning radius, and more stamina when equipped with the Valerian Reins. I most certainly want to craft a set for Tropical Tammy. It will greatly increase her ability for exploration, gathering rare resources, and in obtaining utility tames for my camp upgrades, especially to Villager structures that require lots of stone. The next morning, I take tropical Tammy out on a trip to the desert to look for mantas. The trip goes along the tropical islands along the South, then into the desert south of the Heir Wyvern Mountain to avoid getting into a fight with them. Eventually I find two groups of mantas in the open desert and get the organic polymer needed for both the reins and gill armor. That mission is completed before it gets too hot to be out there. Returning to the camp, I find Starter Patty going nuts with warnings about danger nearby. She is picking up sharks and mantas swimming close to the drop off by the cliff side shoreline. I finally have to move her to the other side of the temporary shelter which puts them beyond the range of her radar. I build a wood taming pen built next to the pond as I want to find a doed for harvesting stone for my camp upgrades. With the Valerian Reins and Gillie Armor crafted, I spend the rest of the day looking for a doed. I find that Tropical Tammy flies so much faster using those reins as well as has a lot more stamina and hitting power in her attack. While I have observed locations containing many other creatures, finding a doed has remained elusive. I will resume that search in the morning. To be continued?
  9. Ragnarok. The single player adventure. Ragnarok is the second player created map that became available as an official stand alone map for Ark. It is a large map with logical transitions between them. With terrain that has sections that were modeled from the real world, the terrain is gorgeous and believable. The history of this map was interesting having been released well before it was finished. Those areas being blocked by a barrier. With each map update, more and more of those areas were opened up with extensive details. In spite of the vastness of the terrain and the details, the map remained well optimized. Even under the sea has been well detailed right up to the world border. The mod game. Settings; Single player with taming, harvesting, leveling set at 3X. Movement Speed at 2X. Hatching and maturation rates set at 6X. Tamed dino’s health and melee set at 1X. MODS in use; Ultra Stacks. Kraken’s Better Dinos. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered. Ultra Stack is a mod that makes gathering so much easier through larger stacking, weight reduction, and reduced spoilage time on all meat types. Kracken’s Better Dinos is a TLC mod that improves the ability of dinos in the game. It adds some additional Tek creatures such as an Ankylo, Trike, and Griffin. Cheaper to craft starter saddles are added for some high level creatures as well as a platform saddle for the Trike and extensions for existing platform saddles and rafts. Trikes and Brontos have a stomp attack. Doeds and Ankylos can now harvest berries. Fliers have the ability to move backwards. Equipped with Valerian Reins, all flying creatures have improved stamina, maneuverability, flying speed, and other useful improvements. Female Mammals can now be milked including Wyverns. New meat and hide types are available from some creatures. A combo Smithy and Preserving Bin adds new abilities including a way to cook and preserve new food types. And a substitute egg and Wyvern Milk replacement can be crafted for taming. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered is a building mod that uses three special crafting benches for creating the numerous building shapes available that are equivalent to wood, stone, and metal. All pieces are compatible with Structure+ and vanilla building pieces. The one exception is that all wall structures are 1/3 higher then standard which is useful for giving your player more head room and allowing large storage boxes to not poke through a ceiling. Morellotops and Amaragsaurus will fit through dino gates. When you learn the crafting bench, you have all the pieces available to you thus saving your engram points for other needs. Best of all, you just load the crafting bench with the required resources and let the items craft independent of what you are doing, just like the Mortise and Pestle. With the extra pieces available, one can make a proper looking round roof as well as a corner roof sections, and single section gable roof so that a three wide structure doesn’t need a flat center. Foundations will stack, pillars place properly, and all pieces can be picked up at a later time. The Crafting Bench can be placed on the ground, a foundation, or the raft. (Platforms?) It also acts as a huge storage crate. The single player experience. There are four main areas of the map one can get started on along with three subsets of each of those. 1. The Highlands. This area can be harder to get started in due to it being colder then the others. It also tends to spawn in Allows, Rexes, and Gigas. Being mostly of plains populated with sheep, horses, and Gallys, wood tends to be scarce around there. 2. Viking’s Bay. Resources tend to be abundant in this area. Depending where you spawn in, it is either safe, or moderately dangerous. 3. Jungle. Of the three areas to spawn in, Jungle 2 will place you next to the Blue Obelisk. While you will have access to wooden crated that can be looted for metal tools the area is lacking in creatures that can be killed for meat and hide. Jungle 1 and Jungle 3 spawn in more small creatures, but many of them tend to be compys, dilos, and those annoying seagulls. All three areas contain much more dangerous creatures once you head inland. 4. Southwest. This spawn area was added upon completion of the map. It is an arid region with many dangerous creatures. For this game play, I spawned in at the west side of Viking’s Bay. This is a large flat sandy area bordered by a rock formation to the East and hills to the West. The area has an abundance of palms, bushes, stones and ground litter one can pick up along with sand. An abundance of river rock, along with some metal nodes, will get you started on metal tools. You will need a flier if you want to obtain any crystal as one cannot climb up to where the nearest nodes are located. Expect to find Pegos, compys, spitters, and seagulls to annoy you. Otherwise, Dodos, Parasaurs, and lystros can be found nearby. The path up into the jungle will take you up to the high bluff where you can expect to find Hynadon Packs, Sabres, raptors, carnos, and Argys. Some loot able wooden boxes can also be found at the top of the bluff. Day One of this adventure; Spawning in at Viking’s Bay West, I need to quickly get away from three thieving Pegomaxes. Thankfully, they don’t take any interest in me as I have nothing on me that they can steal. Down at the shallow end of the sea area, I set about on the tasks of getting the basic tools and supplies. Resources are good here for that. Thankfully, those pesky gulls are not spawning into this area of the map. I save the engrams for when I can get the Settler’s Workbench to build a starter shack next to a large rock outcropping. Next step is to place a storage box by the cliff. As I gather up wood, thatch, and fiber, the extra gets placed into it. Several Dodos bite the dust in order to supply me with much needed hide. With Bolas now crafted, I can go after larger low level creatures of which a Level 15 Parasaur bites the dust. With the wood tier reached, the Settler’s Bench is now available. Loaded with the required building materials, a 4x4 starter hut is built. It is equipped with a spawn bed, large storage chest, and a mortise and pestle. Narco berries and spoiled meat is placed into it to get narcs for the tranc arrows once they are unlocked. As late afternoon approaches. I add two more foundations to the hut. A Refining Forge is placed there and loaded up with wood and metal ore. The River Rocks that are abundant close by give me more then enough raw metal that is needed for the Kraken’s Workbench as well as the stone and flint for sparkpowder. Heading West along the beach to get some metal ore from some rocks along the ridge there, I spot a Level 140 Parasaur and proceed to tame it. I can keep her hid behind the starter shack until I have gathered enough materials to build a proper pen. By the end of the first day, I have a starter hut completed along with a spawn bed, forge, the Krakens Workbench, a tamed Parasaur, and a high level Moschop. I keep Patty and Miss Chomper hid behind the starter shack for the night. During the night, I keep the Settler’s Workbench busy crafting fence foundations. I know that this area can become dangerous in a day or two. While gathering wood, a Pteradon of Level 140 has been spotted. As I have the karatan needed for the saddle, I proceed to tame her and park her by the cliff. With Tammy, I am able to get the crystal needed for a spyglass. As I am preparing to start placing the fence foundations, I spot a pack of “Murder Puppies” coming down from the jungle. I quickly unload the foundations and grab Miss Chomper to go after them. Killing the nearest one, the pack leader howls and they all go charging over to my starter camp. Fearing the worst, I race back with Miss Chomper. Fortunately, they ignore Patty and Tammy by going after something else in the water. I track them all down and take them out with the Moschop. OK, this fence needs to be built and fast. I spend the rest of the morning placing down the foundations and the walls. It takes a lot of wood gathering, but as soon as it is done, I have to deal with a Sabertooth that comes down from the same area as those Murder Puppies. A raft is soon crafted so that I can head West to an area where I can cut down a lot more wood and thatch. The crafting bench on it is stocked with the needed fiber from the Moschop as the next project will be to go with a foundation 10x10 with walls three high. With the supplies now crafting on the raft, I am able to start with the construction of the 10x10 just inside of the fence wall. I get most of the work done during the night. The next day, I am finishing up with the pen when I place Patty on turret mode. She spots something stuck in the rocks in the bay. It makes no sense unless it is a shark, so I wade out there to investigate. It turned out to be a Megalosaurus of all things sleeping up in the corner in the water. Given that they usually only found in caves, or just East of the Lava Beach area it was strange that this one was in the Viking’s Bay rock outcropping. I proceed to tame it and name him Marty. He takes a while to get back into the pen but once in there, he curls up on the floor and goes to sleep. I spend the rest of the day locating and taming an Ankylo and Doed. Annie is most useful for getting metal ore and rock and flint for sparkpowder. Danny is put to work to fill up the Villager’s Workbench for a more ambitions project, a two story round barn that is 36 panels in circumference. A wood and thatch run into Viking’s Bay loads me up with those materials. Picking the large flat beach nearby the Settler’s pen, I start from the center out with well over 100 triangle foundations and many square ones to form the round foundation. The land is flat enough so that the only stacking needed is in the deeper part of the water. I use that spot for a dock. That evening, Marty wakes up, so I saddle him up for an all night hunting run by torchlight. He is not the greatest hunter in the world but does the job well in cleaning out all of the nearby low level creatures around. The next morning, I am pestered by a bunch of sea gulls in the area. I use the pteradon to ambush them from the air which works well in spite of not having Valerian Reins as I need organic polymer and toughened hide to craft them. That will come later. Work continues on the round barn which requires a lot more stone, wood, and thatch. While I could use a Stego for wood and thatch, I gather the wood by hatchet as I use the parasaur for thatch. Eventually, by Day 9, I have a two story barn with an attic for the crafting and living area, and a watchtower on the top of the roof. I will soon move all of the tames into the round barn and set up the work area in the attic. The old pen will eventually get a roof so I can use it for a flier’s landing platform. That will be on a later date as I have been distracted by a new player created map called Lasum. Blame a Matt Bishop video on the ten least played mod maps he picked out of the end of the Steam mod map listing. It has turned out to be a well made map that is mostly completed. I can see that map making for an interesting role playing world ranging from primitive mid evil to futurist apocalyptic world. Expect a single player report on that map in the near future.
  10. My single player game of Valguero. Valguero is a stand along map that is available as an official download for free. Unlike most maps, where the land mass is surrounded by a sea, this one is based upon a valley setting around a large lake surrounded by mountains that act as the border. Hidden in a cave system are a huge ocean and an Aberration cave setting. A boss cave featuring the Brood Mother can be found in the redwoods. An Ice Trench in the snowy mountains is infested with Ice Wyverns where deep inside of that trench is a cave to a lava trench with Fire Wyverns. There are also new types of Rock Golems hiding in the biomes. Numerous structures can be found in the land that can be built in. The most dangerous creature found in the Chalk-lands are the Denonicous, nicknamed The Fluffy Raptors. To obtain one, you have to steal their eggs out of their nest, then hatch them. The babies eat raw meat. These raptors have the ability to climb vertical surfaces including up trees, can glide a short distance, and take no fall damage as they land like a parachute. They can also latch on to a larger creature causing massive bleed damage while avoiding that creature’s effort to defend itself. Beware that they can take you off of a flier if you get too close to them. The mod game. Settings; Single player with taming, harvesting, leveling set at 3X. Movement Speed at 2X. Hatching and maturation rates set at 6X. Tamed dino’s health and melee set at 1X. MODS in use; Ultra Stacks. Kraken’s Better Dinos. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered. Ultra Stack is a mod that makes gathering so much easier through larger stacking, weight reduction, and reduced spoilage time on all meat types. Kracken’s Better Dinos is a TLC mod that improves the ability of dinos in the game. It adds some additional Tek creatures such as an Ankylo, Trike, and Griffin. Cheaper to craft starter saddles are added for some high level creatures as well as a platform saddle for the Trike and extensions for existing platform saddles and rafts. Trikes and Brontos have a stomp attack. Doeds and Ankylos can now harvest berries. Fliers have the ability to move backwards. Equipped with Valerian Reins, all flying creatures have improved stamina, maneuverability, flying speed, and other useful improvements. Female Mammals can now be milked including Wyverns. New meat and hide types are available from some creatures. A combo Smithy and Preserving Bin adds new abilities including a way to cook and preserve new food types. And a substitute egg and Wyvern Milk replacement can be crafted for taming. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered is a building mod that uses three special crafting benches for creating the numerous building shapes available that are equivalent to wood, stone, and metal. All pieces are compatible with Structure+ and vanilla building pieces. The one exception is that all wall structures are 1/3 higher then standard which is useful for giving your player more head room and allowing large storage boxes to not poke through a ceiling. Morellotops and Amaragsaurus will fit through dino gates. When you learn the crafting bench, you have all the pieces available to you thus saving your engram points for other needs. Best of all, you just load the crafting bench with the required resources and let the items craft independent of what you are doing, just like the Mortise and Pestle. With the extra pieces available, one can make a proper looking round roof as well as a corner roof sections, and single section gable roof so that a three wide structure doesn’t need a flat center. Foundations will stack, pillars place properly, and all pieces can be picked up at a later time. The Crafting Bench can be placed on the ground, a foundation, or the raft. (Platforms?) It also acts as a huge storage crate. Game Play Day One; There are several places one can start on this map, some safe, some a bit more dangerous. By far, the safest place is Small Island. However, it will be lacking in small creatures needed early on for meat and hide. I spawn in my character on Small Island. About 50% of the time, one will spawn in on one of the two island. Otherwise, you spawn in on the shore of the nearby mainland. While the same creature types will spawn in with you as they do on the two islands, there is the chance that a Purvolia may show up nearby to end your day early. As I spawned in on the mainland near the beach, I will need to swim over to one of the two islands before it gets cold out, then set up my starter camp before dark. I quickly get the required resources for basic tools and thatch clothes. However, fiber is hard to get as the sagebrush bushes on this section of the mainland have a hard to find gather box. There are no Dodos or Lystros in this area to get for hide so I have to watch out for a low level trapped Parasaur to take out for meat and hide. Once I am basically equipped, I look for the closest way to swim across to one of the two small islands. One has to be careful as there are sharks in the deeper section of the channel. Oil rocks are easily accessible down there for later game use. On the larger of the two small Redwoods Islands, I set up a Settler’s Crafting Bench and start constructing a 2x2 hut for the night. It can get quite cold on these Redwood Islands. Why did I pick this location? There are no predators on those two island, no dilos, no pesky seagulls, no compys, no Thylo up in the tree to pounce on you, just larger herbivores that are living here. That makes it a challenge to get hide and raw meat early on. Once I have the bow with arrows, I am able to find a trapped low level Parasaur to kill for meat and hide. With bolas, I now have the means to take down other Parasaurs and Phenomas for meat and hide. Under Kraken’s Better Dinos, Phenomas will yield lots of hide. They also yield a special meat that is listed as good for healing carnivores but poor for taming. Unfortunately, that meat spoils quickly and cannot be cooked in a campfire. It can, however, be preserved in the combo Smithy and Preserving Bin by placing charcoal and spark powder in there with the special raw meat. The good thing, one low level Parasaur and Phenoma gives me enough hide for bolas, leather armor, and for crafting the Mortise and Pestle, Forge, and combo Smithy and Preserving Bin. With plenty of river rock along the shoreline, I have the required metal ore needed to craft the combo bin and basic metal tools. The fast spoiling Phenoma meat allows me to craft tranc for arrows for future taming. By nightfall, I have obtained enough levels to craft basic metal tools, built a raft, and tamed a high level Parasaur for berry harvesting. Day Two; In the morning, I sail across the lake to the northern spawn point to go hunting and harvest some unusual resources there. In that bay, as I dodge the pesky seagulls, I kill some Dodos, spitters, and compys for their meat and hide. I chop up a dead turtle which yields hide, spoiled meat, and far more karatan then one can get from killing one. The dead beached dolphins yield valuable organic polymer, which will be needed for Gillie Armor as well as for Valerian Reins once I can obtain a high level Pteradon. It also contains hide and lots of spoiled meat. I get the Gillie Armor crafted as where I am heading next will be quite hot. Next, I sail over to a set of ruins where I tie up the raft at the dock. Here, it is quite hot, so I put on the Gillie Armor, then head up the path to where there is a garden containing Rockarrots and Savroot. At the garden, my harvesting is cut short as a nervous Gally goes flying by me with a Carno hot on it’s tail. Fortunately, it doesn’t see me, so I am able to finish with harvesting the advanced crops available there. I leave quickly as that Carno is still around chasing lower level prey. There are Pteradons in the area but none of them are worth taming all being Level 20 or lower. Back at my starter camp, I place the bounty into storage. A high level Ankylo has been spotted on this little island. Facts are, quite a few higher level herbivores spawn in on this island including a Level 140 female Bronto that is knocking down all the trees in the area. As I can now craft the saddle for one, I proceed to tame the Ankylo. She will be most useful to mine the abundant river rocks for stone, flint, and raw metal. By that night, I have her tamed and the forge filled with metal ore. Under the mod, Ankylos can harvest berries, wood, and thatch, and get some sap from the redwood stumps. Day three. Still no luck in finding a high level pteradon. I need one to start surveying the Chalk Lands as well as to obtain some crystal for a spotting scope. Day Four. I tame that female Bronto. Under Kraken’s Better Dinos, their stomp attack is awesome for harvesting. They get massive amount of wood from a stomp as well as stone, flint, and metal ore from the boulders. It is also a bit more selective then the tail swipe which is mostly good for getting berries and some thatch. I do more exploration with the raft and continue looking for a high level Pteradon. No luck. They are all Level 24 or lower. Day Five. Lucked out with a higher level pteradon. First a Level 60 that lost some taming effectiveness due to passing out just as I hit it with another tranc arrow. Later, the next day I get a Level 150 that lands by my starter camp. Finally, I have something that I can use to get crystal and safely explore the Chalk Land. With a raft parked along the shoreline so I can store items on it, I take off for the exploration with the now Level 225 pteradon. From him, I can safely observe the activity below as well as look for fluffy raptor nest. It doesn’t take long to find them out hunting as I see one of them latched onto the side of a Bronto chewing a hole into it. When one goes on an egg hunt, you never want to do this on foot, even with several tribe members. It is best to snatch eggs by using a quick flyer such as a Pteradon, bait the raptors away from the nest, then do a quick land and grab before they all come running back after you. I find a nest and do a quick land and grab. Crap, level 20 egg. I find another nest. Same thing. Level 20 egg. I take them back to the raft. Continuing the exploration, I find more nest. Level 15. I throw it out. The next nests after leading the fluffy raptors away from it, is a Level 55, then a Level 150 egg. I take them back to the camp to place in the preserving bin until I am ready to hatch them. Day Six, I have much better luck with nest raiding. The resulting game of raptor tag and fast raid yields me a Level 55, a Level 90, and a rare Level 180 egg. It will be time to set up a taming pen that will need about two dozen torches fueled by Sparkpower which thanks to the Ankylo, I have an abundant supply as fuel. During that raiding session, I spot a unicorn. With rockarrots obtained from the garden in the ruins, I an able to find and tame him in a relatively safe area. I use the raft to bring him back to the starter base. At the end of Day Six, I am at Level 76 thanks to the crafting of spark powder and narcotics from the spoiled meat harvested from the dead turtles and dolphins along the beach. So, with Day Seven, I will be building a hatching – taming pen for the fluffy raptor eggs. Past experience has shown me that I need about 18 torches arranged in a U shape inside of a pen given that when those little brats hatch, they are totally out of control for the first couple of minutes. A Feeding Trough filled with raw meat is most necessary to keep them fed as they grow up. That way, they only need food placed on them for the first several minutes of growing up. Having comfort foods on hand will help if you plan on imprinting when you start breeding the higher level ones. It is also best to just hatch a couple of eggs at a time given the chance of twins and triplets which can make claiming and controlling them a lot harder. Some info on this map that may cause you grief and frustration. 1. The Brood Mother Cave is extremely complex and dangerous to explore in order to get one of the artifacts needed for the boss fight. A megatherium, the giant sloth, is a must for cleaning out the bugs and spiders as their insect buff will make short work of killing off the numerous high level ones infesting that cave once you have killed the Broodmother and her horde. 2. One of the entrances to the underwater ocean is located South of the larger of Small Island. As that inlet is a good source for oil, you should easily find it in the deeper water. Beware that a deep sea creature could show up unexpectedly in that area. While the lake itself is Leed free, they do live in the depths below the underwater entrances 3. The beach side entrance to the Aberration Cave may toss you off of a flier to your death if you happen to fly anywhere near it. The entrance is big enough to take a Bronto into it. 4. Hopefully, it has been fixed by now but at one time, there was a spot in the Aberration Cave where you could fall through the mesh to a layer below. Even worse was a spot that you would fall through the world to teleport to the plateau on the surface if you didn't get killed by the anti meshing feature now in use. 5. Given that Rock Drakes were removed from the official map, I see no reason to go down into the dangerous radiation zone. 6. Some resources, such as pearls, are hard to come by. The one area in the lake where they can be found is infested with Karpos and Sarcos. Overall, the map has it’s biomes logically placed out and populated with the expected resources and creatures. You might want to turn down the creature spawn rates as it tends to be quite high in places. Thus ends this report on the Valguero adventure.
  11. My Island Adventure 2015. With reference to a story posted in January of 2016 and an extensive collection of screen shots, I have assembled the experience from first playing Ark Survival Evolved from it’s release on June of 2015 to the end of December of 2015. The computer in use at that time; I-5 with 8G ram and a GTX 460 graphic card. Previously, I had dual 512meg cards but upgraded when those cards wouldn’t run Midevil Engineer, a sandbox building game. Game settings were on high on a monitor that was 1680 by 1050. While I played that first map until the released of The Center, the last game save has been lost to time. However, I still have the screenshots from the first thatch hut of July 10 up to the expanded base when it was invaded by the newly released Titansaur which walked over the spike fence and fell down the cliff. The game settings: They were all default but one has to remember that Wildcard changed the default rates for gather, XP and taming to four times the original level. That will be evident when you read just how many game days it took to level up. The settings using the present 2022 rates as a reference, 0.25 for XP, gather, and taming. The wild creature levels, from 1 to 40 max with most being from 4 to 12. There were no bolas available to aid in taming or defense. There was no raft either to get away from sharks and Parana. Vegetation and other harvestable items was very sparse compared to what appears on the map today. There was no swamp, redwoods or snow biome in 2015, those being added later that year. Mid June of 2015. With that first update to allow one to play Ark in the new Host/Local menu, It was now possible to start a single player game. Gone was the need to play on one of the new official servers where everyone was still learning how the game works and became vulnerable to those that knew how to play it. So, I start out by making my character, naming him Halsey, and selecting East Zone One which is located between Drayo’s Cove and the Lava Cave entrance. On those first two weeks, I concentrated on leveling up as I got my stone pick, stone hatchet, and some spears. A temporary 1x1 hut was built in the rocks on the point of Drayo’s Cove where I worked to gather the materials for thatch clothes. The area has remained quite safe from predators with the only creatures on the beach area are low level dodos, turtles, parasaurs, trikes and, pteradons. A note is at this state of the game, Dodos would run from you in a panic if you attacked them. That was not so before single player was released where Dodos would attack a player if provoked. By July 10, I had leveled up enough to get a spawn bed and had built a 1x4 thatch shelter against the cliff of the box canyon by the Lave Cave. According to the screenshots, there was very little trees and bushes in the box canyon to harvest for resources. At that time I was only Level 12. I did have a cooking pot but is didn’t appear to have much use at the time. It's also when I learned how to use Steam for saving in game screenshots. Now, what is interesting back then is the fact that the Blue Obelisk is located along the East shore. The red and green are in the other locations. I find that creatures are getting stuck in the trees, such is the case for a Level 2 turtle and a Level 5 Pteradon. I do find a Level 14 Trike stuck as well. Two Brontos are in different areas of the beach knocking down the trees. July 12 I go explore the Lave Cave. It has an area inside that one could build a small camp with room to spare. I even saw a Pteradon fly inside that area for a short while. Down inside, it gets too hot to go very far as I can see lava falling from the ceiling. Now, these were the days before Bats became an issue. On July 13, I am able to access my first supply drop. Three sleeping bags, a fire pit, some spark powder, and a bunch of assorted berries are found inside it. The night of the 14th, I am having to deal with the cold weather. I am on guard with a spear having survived a surprised attack by three spitters that nearly killed me. They do give much needed meat and hide which is placed in the small storage boxes. On the 15th of July, while exploring up on the plateau, I spot a T-Rex on the other side of Drayo’s Cove. That is not good should it wander across and start going after everything on my side of this area. July 19th. Is this a bug or what? I nearly freeze to death, literally, while standing next to a fire with a lit torch. I later learn that I will need multiple fires to stay warm under such conditions or go hide in the cave. This was before huts were set up to provide some shelter from the cold nights. July 21, an update now allows me to throw a torch. It also adds Dimorphdons, and the soon to be hated Titanomyrmas, the giant flying and crawling ants. July 25, this is ridiculous, three standing torches and a torch and I am freezing to death while in the cave. At Level 18, I finally have the slingshot and a bow with arrows. August 3, or Day 32 on the Ark. How time flies. A green drop appears on the hill on the point. It contained two parachutes, a bow, 46 stone arrows, and 16 valuable tranc arrows. I decide I will head for the trapped Parasaur I spotted yesterday to tame it. But, it is nowhere around. So I head for that stuck trike I found the other day. He is still there. Finding him, I hit him with a tranc arrow and promptly have to avoid an attack by a Level 5 male. This doesn't make sense at first, I think. Normally, mate boosted creatures will come to the aid of one another. I have quickly learned that if other creatures of the same species are nearby, they will come to the aid of the one under attack regardless of their sex. So, I drop him with tranc arrows when he gets stuck in the trees. It is an all night tame but finally get him. I name him Mike and head back to camp to make the saddle. As I approach camp, I spot a wild Dilo waiting in ambush. As I hit it with a stone arrow, Mike charges in front of me and rams it with his horns killing it instantly. The Trike has now proved its worth as a bodyguard against other predators. I soon level up and craft that trike saddle. As I ride mike, I find out that his skills are more useful then I had imagined. In addition to being able to attack and kill wild Dilos, he can knock down trees and driftwood to harvest wood and mostly thatch. Even more valuable is his ability to harvest berries and seeds which he does in far greater numbers then I ever could picking them by hand. He gets no fiber, but, that is fine by me. The ability to harvest large number of berries especially those hard to get narcoberries, will greatly aid in crafting narcs and taming future dinosaurs. I decide to go tame the original trike that I was after the day before. I take mike along for the tame. Three tranc arrows drops the other male. Like Mike, the tame takes about an hour. It is much easier since I can use Mike to gather the berries I need and not have to rely on my limited supply of crafted narcs that I am will need for more tranc arrows. During that tame, another supply drop occurred on the hill. I get two standing torches, a firepit, and misc items. As it is getting dark, I placed the torches near by and light them to help ward off any unseen predators during that night. That second trike, another male, wakes up tamed. I name him Terry the Trike, place Mike's saddle on him, get him unstuck by using his attack mode, and whistle for Mike to follow us back to the base. Later that day, I find the male Parasaur stuck at the point on the cove side. I head back to get the trikes and the Parasaur saddle I had crafted some time ago. I decide to bring both trikes with me as the area this Parasaur is in can be much more dangerous at night. The tame takes an hour given that I have knocked out a Level 20. Once tamed, I have one heck of a time getting him unstuck but finally get him loose. I ride him back to base with the trikes following us. I name him Perry the Parasaur. Like the Trikes, Perry can harvest wood, thatch, and berries. But, his gather rate is so slow that I find I can do the job much faster on my own. He does have the ability to run a lot faster and further without getting as tired as quickly as the trikes. Unlike the trikes, he has much less ability to carry heavy items. What becomes interesting is that like me, my trikes and parasaur, have health stats, can be level up, and that I can improve one of their stats such as health, weight, speed, or melee damage, each time they do so. Such an ability is proving quite useful, as I can craft a pet that is faster, tougher, and stronger then their wild cousins. In addition, I had noticed that when a wild female Trike had wandered close by while I was in the taming process with Terry, a mate boost would appear over his stats. I looked that up in the survivor's WIKI. He stated that having a mate boosted pair gave each of them a 25% boost in their abilities, something that could make the difference in surviving, or being killed in a fight with a predator. So, it was time to go tame a girl for the boys. I didn't have far to go when one wandered into camp during the night. Placing the boys on Passive so that they wouldn't accidentally attack her, I hit her in the head with a tranc arrow. Down that head shook then she charged in my direction. I dodge in the nick of time as I put a second arrow then a third to the head. Finally, she staggered over to a nearby boulder and collapsed. Note, head shots are now less effective on Trikes with the update. They were very effective in 2015. I don't know why it turned into such a long tame She wasn't that high of a level. Fortunately, much of the vegetation around camp has return, so I didn't have to go far to get a steady supply of narcs and the Trike's favorite food, Mejoberries. I named her Tina. Both my males now show mate boosted. By day 43, I have tamed a second female trike named Tricia and crafted a second saddle August 7th. The August 1st update has added tribolites as well as a sickle. Until I can unlock the Forge and Smithy, I cannot make one to make finer gathering a lot quicker. At least, some of the foliage and boulders are starting to return to the area. I also tame a second female Trike that has wandered into the box canyon. At least, I now have mate boosted trikes. One day when chasing after a drop on the hill with my four trikes and collecting its stash, I noticed Terry was missing. Where did he go? What happened to him? Given that he had a saddle on him, I had to backtrack to find what had happened to him. I traveled all the way back to where I had went the entire day. No Terry. A loss of a saddle and valuable tame with everything he was carrying I though. Then, when I turned the corner to reach cave base, Terry comes running to greet us. Seems though he had tried to shortcut across the cliff as we were racing to the drop, lost his footing, and slid down it. As taking all the trikes along has become a chore to keep an eye on them so they aren't getting stuck on or behind something, I decide to just take a saddled mate boosted pair along on my daily foraging expeditions. I find that keeping a track of a pair is a much easier task then with taking four of them along. They also work much better as a pair then with four of them or alone. In addition, I notice that the wild dilos I occasionally come across tend to keep their distance, even when I am dismounted. I use the saddled pair for harvesting wood and thatch and switch Trikes when the one I am riding becomes encumbered by the weight of the resources. As I have spotted a T-rex on my side of Drayo’s Cove, I have been kept busy building a pen from wood and thatch to protect my tames. I am also preparing the wall sections to block off a ramp that comes up from Drayo’s Cove to keep one from coming up into the cliff above my camp given that the T-Rex came up the ramp to investigate a starter hut I had built there before wandering off to continue hunting on the beach below. August 29th. I lose one of my Trikes while out gathering wood. A pesky Bronto on the point had been trashing the palms all week. That idiot Tricia decides she has had enough of this and goes off after the Bronto. Unable to call her off, I get on Mike and charge in to help, but he soon gets too tired to fight. I am forced to bail off and fight on foot with the primitive bow and arrows, Badly hurt, the Bronto runs off to the cliff and gets stuck trying to climb it. The Bronto falls as I get a message that Tricia has killed it. Unfortunately, she is crushed to death when the it falls on top of her. I salvage what I can and head back to base. The next day, I go searching for a replacement and locate a Level 21 female stuck in the palms near the point. It takes 15 tranc arrows to drop her. Two days later, Yes, it takes that long back then resulting in only 42% taming effectiveness, she is tamed and ready to go. I name her Trixie. Those four Trikes have proven to be a most valuable resource, a game changer in this world of survival, by making my survival on the Ark far easier then doing so on my own. That night, I hear this big crash outside of the thatch pen. Did a T-Rex come up the ramp to find my camp? Going outside, I find that a Stego has slid down the cliff and is now wandering about. It is a Level 2 Female. September 1. I decide to go tame the stego as she is now down by my beach shack. She promptly goes crazy as I hit her with tranc arrows to the head. By the time she falls unconcious, she has destroyed half of the beach shack, the cooking pot, and three storage boxes. After an all night tame, I saddle her up and go berry harvesting. In no time, I have over 300 mejoberries, 120 thatch, 33 wood 66, narcoberries, crop seeds and an assortment of other stuff. September 8th. The thatch barrier is finally completed. I see a Bronto testing it out. After several tries to cross it, it finally turns around and leaves. It is day 52 in the game and about 70 real days of playing Ark when I finally reach level 25. Metal tools! Yea! To craft those tools, I need a Smithy. It takes five of my refined metal ingots, 50 stone, 30 wood, and 20 hide to craft it. With the Smithy, I am able to craft a pick, hatchet, pike, and crossbow using the metal ingots that I refine from the metal ore in the Refining Forge. With 52 days of breaking boulders on the beach and inland, I have collected barely enough metal to craft all five items. The pick, taking only one of my precious refined metals, is well worth the cost of the materials. It enables me to harvest flint, stone, and the occasional metal ore at a much more efficient rate. At a much slower wear rate, it will last an entire day of constantly hitting boulders before needing repair or replacing. The hatchet, of similar capably, but taking eight of my metal ingots, is extremely efficient at getting wood, It takes very little time to gather hundreds of wood at once. The Pike, taking ten of those metal ingots, gives me a hard hitting spear, while a bit heavy at ten pounds compared to three spears, I find that it hits my targets twice as hard and will not break unexpectedly. It does show a wear bar after extensive use. The crossbow, a stunning achievement using seven metal ingots, gives me a longer range hard hitting weapon that uses my existing stone and tranc arrows. Not only do the arrows travel faster and further with the crossbow, they hit with twice the efficiency when fired from a primitive bow. Once cocked, I just acquire the target and pull the trigger. I find that it works great at taking out those pesky dilos, one tranc arrow fired from a crossbow is more then enough to drop all but the higher level ones. I hit them at range, they stagger, then collapse unconscious. The only drawback is it takes twice as long to reload. Yes, the grind was really that bad back in 2015. Yet, Ark continued to get numerous updates with new creatures appearing in many of them as well as new tools and abilities. To be continued.
  12. My single player game on Scorched Earth. (Not to be confused with The Story of Scorched Earth which is a separate role playing adventure.) Settings; Single player with taming, harvesting, leveling set at 3X. MODS; Ultra Stacks. Kraken’s Better Dinos. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered. The adventure. The map seems to be more well balanced as far as the wild dinos that spawn in from what it was playing it in the past. There were just too many predators out there in the starter zone as well as hanging around all of the sources for water. Much of that has since been re-balanced especially being able to find logical places where one can shelter from the afternoon heat blast. Still, this is not a map for a first time player. There are tricks one needs to be aware of for survival on this map such as waterskins are worthless, one can pick wood from the little pine trees, and you get rehydrated by harvesting a cactus with a pick or hatchet, drinking from a water seep, or from a blue Jug Bug, and building made from wood, stone, or metal are ovens in the daytime. My character Desert Pete is spawned in at the first easy point on this brutal map. It is located in the Eastern Low Desert. While I have spawned in this area before, there are several spawn points for this location, some good, some not so good. This one, located near the Green Obelisk, is one of those that is not so good which I will soon explain why. Like all the starting points on this map, I spawn in with no engrams other then the default. I am already getting the “You are hot” warning as I am nearly run over by a Morellotop that is being chased by a Direwolf. Thankfully, it doesn’t agro on me as it keeps chasing the Morellotop. Wonderful, I even see a pack of raptors out hunting as well. I could find getting myself killed before I am able to get started on this map. It has happened before. The first task at hand is to get out of this area and down to the Southern Canyon before the afternoon heat arrives. The reason, that area is sheltered from the heat. There is also a pond that is free from Karpos in the spot I am heading as well as several metal nodes close by. Running is out of the question as that drains water quickly in this heat. A pick is quickly crafted and with the first three levelups, a hatchet, spears, and some thatch clothes which offer some thermal protection. Continuing down towards the canyon area, I am able to obtain some hide from a dead raptor. So many of them are low level that a pack of Morleys or Doeds can easily take them out.There are cactus in the area which on this map have the ability to refill your water meter by just hitting them with the pick. Eating berries and cactus sap only slows down the water drain. Also, Jug Bugs, another water source, are rare in this area. I continue down the slope adding weight and fortitude as I get more levels. The spawn in point has placed me much further away from where I want to go then expected. At least, I now have a boomerang and bolas as I get hit with an overheating warning. The priority now is to get into the Southern Canyon before heat stroke sets in. Finally, with my destination in sight, the overheat warning vanishes. Now by a reliable water source, I proceed to get a starter hut built from thatch as this is the only structure, other then Adobe or a tent, that will provide some protection from the weather. A 2x2x2 thatch hut is built. With the bow and arrow unlocked, I get those crafted up and do some hunting in the nearby area. Small game is scarce around here as I need the hide for a spawn bed, forge, and leather armor for the night. I manage to obtain sufficient resources for the campfire, forge, mortise and pestle by nightfall. I cook up half of the meat and split the rest to spoil for trancs. From a nearby metal rock in the pond, I gather just 22 metal ore for the Better Dino Workbench and a pick. Interesting, it has started to rain as I proceed to work on that task along with berry and fiber gathering. I get that processing as it starts to get too cold to be out for the night. By morning, I have the workbench, a metal pick, and tranc arrows. I mine the rest of the metal rock and get them smelting down in the forge. Spotting two raptors, up in the hill towards the Green Obelisk, I head up with bolas and tranc arrows to go make them my first tame. As usual, things don’t go as planned. I get the first one down, but the second one runs off getting into a fight with the Ankylos. It takes ten tranc arrows to knock the first raptor out as I am having issues getting head shots with this feisty thing. Finally out, he gets tamed. It is a high level male. The other dead raptor and an ankylo are harvested for their meat and hide. Interesting, the ankylo yields toughened hide. In no time, I have gathered a good stock of meat and hide with him. Coming back to camp, a low level Hell Pig is fighting some Doeds, it gets killed by them. I gather the meat from it which happens to be a type of bacon that can be used for quick healing of a meat eater but is poor for taming. A thatch ramp is made so that I can get the raptor up on the roof for the time being. It is a pain to snap into place as it will only snap along a wall. Later in the day, now armed with more tranc arrows on a crossbow, I find two more mid level raptors hunting in the canyon. This time, they are quickly bola and knocked out in under 30 seconds for taming. Unfortunately, for taming up for a pack, they are also males. A female raptor is most desired to give the pack a mate boost. For the next couple of days, I keep searching for a good level female but find only low level males. When I do finally find one, it is a level 4 that gets quickly killed in a fight. A nearby supply drop gives me a complete set of desert armor. Meanwhile, with three raptors parked on the roof and a tamed Morley, I place down a Villager’s Workbench so that I can get started on a secure pen for the tames. More raptors and hell pigs are starting to show up down here. The Morley proves useful in gathering larger amounts of wood from the hand pick able pine saplings. He is also good at getting thatch and cactus sap. It may be the dino mod as the Morley holds 1,000 units of water instead of 750. Also, the water stats do not show up on the wild ones unless you use a spyglass on them. A doed is obtained to mine the boulders for stone and sand. They get a 75% weight reduction on stone. I also find out that I am getting a 50% weight reduction on that heavy sand as well. A mega heat wave hits that evening but the location where I am at is sheltered from it’s effect. It’s freezing cold once it is over. Wood continues to be an issue as it is needed for the forge, cooking, adobe, and the Villager’s structures. At least, there are the fast respawning pine saplings that yield lots of wood using the Morley. The yield from the Joshua and cactus Trees using a metal hatches are poor and even worse using the Morley. A Thorny Dragon or chainsaw is going to be needed. As I am building the pen, I spot a tek raptor in the area. It is soon in a fight with the wild doeds which eventually kill it. Free scrap metal, electronics, oil and element dust. I could also use a Parasaur just to have it for it’s alert status. So far, there have been very few in the area all being Level 12 or lower, so, I take them out with the raptors. The same with all of the kangaroos which get swarmed so quickly that they are dead and eaten before they know what has hit them. As evening approaches, I hear a Jarboa sounding a storm warning. Tracking it down, I knock it out and have it tamed before the storm hits in the distance. An Ankylo gets tamed in the morning. It gets put to work mining boulders so I can get spark powder production going for the torches and gunpowder. Heading up towards the Green Obelisk, I go looking for a Thorny Dragon. I spot a Rex hunting in the area. Normally, they are found much closer to the Southern Desert area of the canyon. This one could be a threat. I stay out of it’s sight finding a mid level Thorny Dragon to tame. I call him a Thorny Beaver because of their wood gathering ability. He gets lots of wood from the Joshua and other trees, but none from the cactus. At least, their harvest will be a lot more efficient on those uncommon wood sources. So far, the area I am camped in remains relatively safe. The only danger are the raptors and the occasional Hell Pig. No wolves other then the ones I have seen near the Green Obelisk. Not so down the canyon in the direction of Nosta. In that pond are Karpos. I have even seen a Purvola near the pond, yes, they are a hazard on this map as well as Terror Birds and a thieving pack of Pegomaxes. No flier so far. I may pay a visit to Lost Island to upload a dragon to the obelisk where on the last time I played it, I was able to obtain a Level 185 lightning dragon and her egg. Surprise, the Dotame cheat now works on the wild ones in single player. I may just head up in the mountain for now to tame an Argy. Just a history on the Avatar used on my post in this forum. It originates from Scorched Earth when that map first came out. He is a gmsummons male that was then custom color mapped into the gray white one used for the Avatar. He happens to be named Avatar and was featured in the story Primitive Plus, Scorched Earth posted around the time that this form went online in 2016. There is still a lot more to be done on this camp before I go download a dragon from another map or go looking for one in the Wyvern Trench. I need to build a new, larger Adobe workshop with a landing pad next to the dino pen and add couple of high level females to the raptor pack. Then a Blake for cave work or attacking the mantas for polymer. They do spawn in further to the South. As always, the story may be complete here or added to as I continue to try out new things in single player.
  13. This has been a HUGE project over the past 6 months. Originally done for myself because I wanted there to be a lore and history for Ark Ragnarok, I have decided to publish it here where hopefully others will enjoy it. Two chapters will be posted at the beginning of each week, as long as people seem to be liking it. Feedback is always welcome! Thanks! -- Prelude It was hard for Sven to imagine a time when he wasn't Sven. Or rather, he preferred not to remember it, at all. Sven figured, everyone had to be someone before the person they were now. Everyone had a past. And everyone had the ability to wake up one day and say, 'You know what? Today is a new day, and I'm going to make a change in my life for the better'. For Sven, that day was when he died and woke up here. He woke up on the peak of a mountain, in a region that the locals affectionately called the “Murder Snow”. It wasn't a very inventive name, but it sure got the point across. He was naked then, but not as he was before in his past life. Where he was once frail and weak, now he was some sort of ridiculous hulking mass of muscles. He had stood there and laughed, because it felt right; it felt like the thing to do, though looking back, it might have just been the effects of hypothermia. He wasn't alone though. There had been a brain rattling roar and Sven had suddenly found himself running, bounding from ledge to ledge with a mechanical t-rex chasing him down. This place, he had come to learn, after being eaten by that great, mechanized beast, was Asgard. The Asgard. The mythical land where Nordic warriors went after they died, to fight on and feast with Odin in Valhalla, the castle of the Gods. After having not died from the metal dinosaur – after all, one cannot stay dead while in the afterlife - Sven decided to throw himself into the role, the role of this large, jolly Viking man, with long flowing golden hair. Even before, in his past life when he wasn't yet Sven, he still had an interest in Norse Mythology. And unlike others around that time who found interest in it thanks to comic book movies, his interest predated it. So when Sven was reborn in this place, it just felt right to throw himself into the character and praise Odin. Then he actually met Odin. Yes, of all the silly and impossible things. It didn't make sense. None of this did. And nine months after living in this place and getting situated, and finding friends and a roof over his head, it continuously made less sense every minute he was here. And why dinosaurs, he'd ask? Why didn't they have cows? Was it too much to ask from Asgard to have a rib-eye steak once in awhile? He guessed dinosaur meat is okay. But yes. Sven met Odin. The god, Odin. It was during one of the yearly feasts with the High Garden tribe. That's one of the three tribes that lives in Asgard. There were three of them, all distinct and differing in their culture and the sway they had on the people who identified with them. Sven didn't know the whole history. There were Vikings, Sven's people, who lived on the Northern coast of the island. They were great warriors who never shy'd away from a battle, and the most fun at parties, Sven had decided. The River Kingdom was what the tribe in the Southern jungles called themselves. They setup their settlements along the great South River and they took a particular interest in controlling the flow of spices and minerals, many of them being renowned traders in their past lives. And then finally there was the High Garden tribe, which contrary to the name, existed in a valley in the center of the Island where the land was most fertile. They were an interesting folk. On the one hand, they kept many of their traditions from when they were on Earth. Many of their tribe had come from Asian nations, which showed in their architecture, most of which resembled what a person might read about in a text book on feudal Japan. They were farmers and artisans. The artists of the tribe seemed to be inspired by one too many tales of Elves – they created great, big figures, ten stories tall, carved into the cliff sides protecting the valley, as if these figures watched over them and protected them from harm. But enough about them. Aido, one of the tribe's leaders, explained the whole middle earth thing to him in detail. “You see, in the end it's about pride and about taking charge of your surroundings. It's about a decision to work together to make a place your home.” “But”, Sven would argue, “wouldn't all that time carving up the mountains be better spent elsewhere?” “With the 'Middle Earth' statues as you call them, we have beautified the land and brought unity to our tribe. We have left a mark on the land stating that we are a community, a community with a culture and passion. Who would come here for a festival if it was held in a Spinosaurus infested wasteland?” Bjorn would probably still come. As long as there was food and women, Sven's friend would show up anywhere. But beyond just Bjorn, Aido had a point. Every year to promote unity among the tribes, High Garden threw a two day festival, culminating on the final day in an open air feast. Hundreds of people from across the land attended and spread across the valley. The High Gardians even offered Spinosaurus rides; tamed one's, of course. They had devoted several acres of land to the sport, setting up a course where you raced through forested dirt paths, up and down hills, and even crossed a bog. It wasn't for the faint of heart. Several people would die while completing each year, but, no matter, they would be reborn the next morning. That's what happened here when someone died. If you somehow ended up dead, at dawn the next day you would materialize out of thin air in your home. He didn't like to think about it – despite having gone through it himself, it still left him with an uneasy feeling deep inside him. Luckily, right now he didn't have to think about it. He was too busy laughing with his companions and enjoying the mead. They'd come from the Viking Bay region, being that they were all self described Vikings. They weren't the only ones from their tribe who attended, but they were the only ones who came by land. The rest had decided on the safer choice: traveling by air. For long travels, his tribe rode on Pelagornis; basically giant Pelicans, big enough to support a single rider. “Are you sure the gods will be making an appearance”, he asked Freyja, one of his tribe mates. She stood about a head shorter than Sven. She was fit but not filled with bulging muscles like Sven was. She was still wearing her hide leggings and bracers from the ride here, but had switched out her hide shirt for a cloth one instead. She had intense blue eyes and blond shoulder length hair. “Yes, Sven!”, Freyja laughed, “You need to calm down. Enjoy the food. There's still time in the day. Odin will be here.” “Of course Sven is excited”, put in Bjorn. Bjorn was Sven's other friend. He was about even in height with Sven. He was fit, but the flab around his stomach betrayed his love for ale and good food. He was of Nordic descent with short messy looking blond hair, with a goatee which he always kept neat and trimmed. “I mean, what do you expect from a man who seems to modeled his entire existence on the guy. Not that there's anything wrong with it, by the way. It's okay to be a little star struck.” “Sven isn't star struck.”, Sven protested. “Sven just wants to know that he's meeting Odin and not some other Sven type of person putting on a show.” “Two of you? I don't think this party could handle two Svens”, quipped Freyja. Sven and his friends shared a laugh and he took another drink. “And of course he's coming. I'm a goddess after all, so you have to trust me”, she winked at him. She wasn't really a goddess, at least Sven didn't think so. She shared a name with a goddess in Norse Mythology who was charged with love and death, among other things. Freyja's only love was having fun. She sought out adventure even more than Sven did. It was probably why the other Vikings had elevated her to be one of their leaders. That, or the Goddess thing. Sven looked at her dubiously and grinned. “If that's true, Sven wonders where your golden chariot is. I don't think I've seen you ride it into battle while I've been here.” “Creative license”, she replied smoothly, smiling back. “But I do have the Sabertooths that supposedly pull the thing”. Yes, Sven thought, two very lazy, well pampered Sabertooths. They spent most of the time lounging in the Sun and eating table scraps. They were quite large, but not in an athletic way. “And anyway”, she continued, “Stories get changed all the time, with every person who tells it. Then you have the stories being translated and re-translated into dozens of different languages. It's no wonder a few aspects of my life were changed.” Bjorn laughed, “By that logic, who's to say that I'm not really Odin? The cloak of Raven's feathers and the eye patch? Same thing. Details mixed up in translation. “What Sven really needs is a woman. A little companionship, you know? With your physique and all the stories you have, you should have no problem finding someone here” Freyja laughed. “Of course. I mean, all of us women just flock to someone who's built like a boulder and have good stories. We're all completely superficial like that.” Freyja chuckled, ”Though for a one night stand, I think there are any number of women here who would have tied him down. Assuming Sven is into that”. Sven cleared his throat, and scratched the back of his neck, uncomfortably. “Sven hears all this noise coming from Bjorn and Freyja. If finding companionship is so easy, why are there only the two of you standing before Sven? Where are your companions?” “I'm not looking right now, thanks”, responded Freyja. Sven couldn't help but notice the wounded look that briefly graced Bjorns face as he looked away. Bjorn and her had something once, Sven was sure of it, but he wasn't dumb enough to open that can of worms. “What about you, Bjorn?”, she continued. “You brought it up. Where's your woman?” Sven was expecting this question to further hurt Bjorn, but instead he seemed to brighten and got a wistful look in his eyes. “As a matter of fact, I did meet someone. It was last night, while you and Sven were talking with Aido. I was watching this street performer who was juggling plates while on stilts when an Allosaurus tried to steal my Parasaurus drumstick.” An Allosaurus was certainly a large dinosaur to be roaming around, standing several people tall. Most had left their dinosaurs in one of the large barns acting as stables, but it wasn't uncommon for some to walk with their owners. Once a dinosaur was tamed by person, that dinosaur was then fiercely loyal to them and was no longer a danger to others. It's like when they bonded with a person it overwrote their base instincts. Like with Sven's bear, Barry. She would never hurt a fly, unless Sven commanded it. “Oh, yeah I know the one you're talking about”, replied Freyja. “Not like there's a lot of Allosaurus's running around. I think hers is the only one. It's, Sunny, right? That paleontologist lady's. I ran into her the other day as well. Having a big Allosaurus walking around is a good conversation starter.” “Especially when it starts stealing from you.”, agreed Bjorn. “We really hit it off though. I was telling her about how Holly attacked that Yuty of her own accord, and how smart she is. She was really interested in meeting her, so I took her back to the stable with me.” Holly was Bjorn's tamed dinosaur. A Dienonychus – kind of like a big, feathery Raptor. “Awe, that's cute!”, Freyja smiled and clapped her hands together. “Bonding over your dinos. So where is she now?” “Probably sleeping in. We were out pretty late last night. There might have been a few shared drinks” “So you spent the night together”, she stated more than asked. Sven wasn't about to ask himself as it seemed more of a private matter. Especially when it came to Bjorn. He loved women, but the truth was, he really didn't know how to act around them. “Unfortunately not.”, Bjorn sighed. “Said she needed more time to get to know me. But she wants to come back with us to Viking Bay and stay for awhile, so here's hoping.” – Eventually evening took hold and Sven stopped thinking about Odin and just allowed himself to enjoy the gathering. At this point, he was pretty sure that the God wasn't coming and that the whole thing was just make believe. The High Gardians set out tables with lines of tankards filled with ale, and trays of fried vegetables and meats. Sven and his friends had met up with a bunch of the other Vikings, several of them gathering involved in an impromptu arm wrestling tournament, which was already drawing a crowd of onlookers. The sky was turning dark. No one else seemed to be paying it much mind. Looked like a thunderstorm was rolling in. A few moments later, a lightning bolt blasted a crater in the middle of the outdoor hall, shattering the table the Vikings were sitting at. Sven was standing about a dozen feet away and the energy of it still knocked Sven back onto his butt. His eyes were useless. All of his vision was white. When it returned, the skies had cleared and an old man was standing there in the ruined remains of what was once a very large and solid table. Splinters and wood chips were everywhere, along with men and women picking themselves up and dusting each other off. In the center of the carnage was an enormous man with a burly gray beard, with muscles visible under his darkened chain mail. A cheer went up from all those in attendance and everyone raised their mugs, as Sven's friends helped him to his feet. Odin himself laughed a hearty laugh. He strode over and took the men and woman still on the ground by the arms, and effortlessly lifted them to their feet. Giving them a quick inspection and deciding that they were alright, the man held out his hand, and a moment later a mug of ale came flying into it from a near by table that had survived the blast. “I salute you all”, he laughed and boomed, “my warriors of Asgard. And while most of you have seen many years in my kingdom, I especially want to cheer and salute our newcomers”, he paused and took a swig of his drink, pausing and looking around. “Sven! Where are you, Sven?” Sven just stared. His friends laughed. “See, we told you he was real”, they said as they gently shoved him forward, his tongue temporarily stuck in his throat. It would go down as one of the only times in his new life that he didn't know what to say. “Ah! There you are!”, he walked over and put his arm around Sven. “This warrior began his life here in my realm in the Murder Snow, being chased down the mountain by packs of snow leopards. He killed one with nothing but his hands, and then climbed on the back of another, racing down that mountain. You remember what you said to me then?” Sven remembered. “Um”, he whispered to Odin. “You want Sven to say it” “Yes”, Odin whispered back. “Nice and loud so everyone can hear you. It's a good story, there's no reason to be quiet about it.” “Odin! Is that the best you can do?”. He shouted the line just the same as he remembered it. “Yes!”, Odin roared, slapping him on the back and turning to the crowd of people that stopped eating and gathered around. “And what do you all think I did in answer” “Struck him down with a bolt of lightning”, someone from the crowd yelled. “So that's why he always refers to himself in the third person!”, Freyja joked. Odin laughed, “Yes!”, then he looked to Freyja. “To striking him down! Not to the speech, thing. That's something distinctly, Sven.” Odin cleared his throat and looks around, sloshing some of the beer from the tankard. “Where was I?” “Um... you struck me down”, Sven hedged. “Ah, yes!”, Odin took another drink and then continued. “I stuck him down, but not with lightning! Obviously”, he motioned at Sven, “this warrior seemed sure of himself, so I summoned a great mechanical beast, and it gave chase all the way down the mountain. I daresay, you might have survived, Sven, if that Sabertooth you were riding hadn't taken such a big leap and broke your back with the landing. I think the next time you need to choose your mount more wisely” Was Odin joking with him? As if Sven had time to consider the options and choose a different one. “Next time Sven will be sure to lash two of the beasts together, braiding rope from his own hair!” “A warrior through and through. Everyone lift your glasses. To Sven!”, Odin shouted and raised his mug. “To Sven”, repeated the banquet hall. Everyone drank and laughed. “To me!”, Sven roared and grabbed a tankard himself and sloshed the creamy liquid down. To be honest, he wasn't quite sure this magical man standing beside him really was Odin. Everything was happening too fast at this point. Of course, his friends told him that Odin would be here, but he could just as well have been an actor. If he was one though, Sven did have to hand it to the man, he was a very good one. And he had knowledge of Sven's exploits, but that wasn't very hard to know. Sven, after all, was a very loud individual and liked to tell stories. Everyone went back to their conversations and Odin leaned in and spoke quietly to Sven. “Walk with me, Sven”. Sven gave a look to his friends, as if needing their approval. Bjorn gave him a thumbs up. Freyja looked at him and mouthed, 'go', smiling and waving him away. And so they walked. He walked with this man appearing to be Odin, and where they walked, people politely made space. Sven couldn't believe it. If he really was a God, wouldn't people be trying to bother him with all the things and questions they must have? They walked in silence, up a flight of stone stairs to a spot that overlooked the grassy canyon below. Odin went out to the edge, resting his over sized arms on the wood fence, looking out at the evening sun. “I sometimes forget how beautiful this place is”, he said, almost wistfully. “But, is this not your kingdom?”, Sven ventured. “Sven would think you would know every inch of it.” “Of course it is”, he replied, “but it's been my kingdom for many cycles, and from within my castle, my starlit sanctuary, well”, he paused and scratched his beard, “there's a lot of bureaucracy, a lot of numbers, to running a kingdom. It can be easy to get caught up in all of that.” He smiled and grabbed Sven's shoulder. “Sometimes to see the beauty, one needs to look with a fresh pair of eyes, with a fresh perspective”. Odin chuckled. “I'm sure you of all people can understand that sentiment”. He could. “If you are referring to my past life”, now it was Sven's time to pause. The breeze carried sweet and savory scents. Trees rustled. The sounds of cascading water from the many waterfalls in the region. This man smelling of beer and spice. Maybe this man really was a god. He was jovial one minute and thoughtful the next. But not normal thoughtful. The kind of thoughtful that must come from being deeply old and with that age, the loneliness. Maybe. “I haven't told anyone of my past life”, Sven finally responded. “Let me give you some Godly advice”, Odin said as his gaze turned back to the horizon. Though it seemed as if maybe he was looking beyond it. “You shouldn't be ashamed of it. Your past life doesn't make this one any less special. In fact, for you, it's quite the opposite.” “But if they knew my past”, Sven said in a very meloncoly, very unSven like way, “Sven wouldn't be real anymore. Sven would just be a character.” Odin nodded and smiled, “We're all characters, lad. Every single last one of us. But that doesn't mean we aren't real.” Another silence descended. But not one of those awkward silences that Sven dreaded. This seemed to be a silence of intent. A silence as a punctuation mark. Or maybe Odin just fell asleep. If he really was as old as Sven guessed, then he must be tired. “I'm not asleep, you dolt!”, Odin shouted at him. “And yes”, he said more quietly so that no one else could hear him, “I am tired” “Wait!”, Sven exclaimed, looking to Odin in confusion, “How did you know what I was thinking?” Odin laughed a great belly laugh and pointed an index finger at his chest. “God” Right. That makes sense, Sven thought. “Well, maybe you should take a nap.” Odin looked at Sven and sighed, “Wish that I could, lad. But being that I'm a God of this domain, I don't get to have naps. If I take a nap, there's no telling what will happen to this place” Well, that's a terrifying thought. “Don't worry. That's billions of cycles away. Nothing Sven needs to worry about. But Sven, I didn't summon you over here to talk about the inner workings of my kingdom.” He chuckled. “At least not yet. You've had a question ever since arriving here. So out with it! Ask the question.” There were many questions Sven wanted to ask right then. After all, when face to face with a god, it's like admin level access to the universe. But that was Sven's old life poking through. Ever since arriving and noting the metallic diamond shaped implant in his left arm, he'd wondered about it's function. Was it's purpose to control? To manipulate your thoughts? Maybe it was where Sven got his super human strength. That should have been his question. Unfortunately though, as a God would tell you, anytime one appeared before you, the question was always the same. It was a little uninventive, a little predictable, but it needed to be asked. It was, after all, the first and immediate question since his arrival. “Odin, why am I here?” --- Chapter 1 It was the greatest joke of Selene's life, or her afterlife in this case. You're dead, they bury you in the ground, and then you ascend, where you immediately encounter the first joke; not the greatest, just the first. The joke being that instead of an afterlife promised by the most popular Earthly religions, it turns out that Nordic mythology had it right all along. The second joke which Selene found out very early, when she first appears, was that almost everything here wanted to kill you. And the third and final joke, the biggest joke of them all, was that she was currently forced to be here, at the South Oasis Trading Company, cataloging spice shipments in a stagnant, hot warehouse. Even in the afterlife, you were expected to have a job. The port city of Oasis was settled on the southern-most shore of Asgard, where the Gaia River emptied into the sea. The name, Oasis, owed from the fact that the river created a natural Jungle Oasis all along it's banks – a respite from the miles and miles of desert that you would find if you journeyed further inland. It was always hot and humid. Of all the places on the island of Asgard, it was probably one of the least comfortable. Each area of the island seemed to have it's own micro climate. If you went further north into the mountains, the temperatures dropped far below freezing. North of those, the extreme weather became more temperate. The highlands area where Valhalla was located, and the surrounding area where the self proclaimed Vikings lived, tended to be the most desirable. The weather there was a constant 65 degrees F with very low humidity. So Oasis wasn't located in the most comfortable spot. It was still the largest city in Asgard, owing most of that to the fact that the other tribes had to come here to trade for salt, spices and medicines that the jungle provided. “Selene!”, shouted Horas, her boss, from the other side of the warehouse. He was a tall, stately looking Middle Eastern man. He was bald with striking brown eyes and a strong jaw line. He wore a white vest of the finest silk, his bronzed chest exposed, with a soft sheen of sweat. Selene might think him attractive, if not for the fast that he quarreled with her so often. He was a very strict task master and needed everything in the warehouse to be placed in exactly the correct spot, down to the millimeter. “Yes, what am I doing wrong now?” Selene grunted as she placed a large jar of tree sap down on the shelf. As she did, her curly red hair tumbling into her eyes. She reached into her pocket pulled out a small beaded cord and pulled her hair back through it. She dressed light, just a white blouse and tan colored breeches. Even wearing so little, she was still sticky with sweat. “What?”, he said in surprise as he walked towards her. “Nothing. You aren't doing anything wrong today that I can tell. I just wanted to let you know that Jarold and Tarneth won't be joining you today.” Jarold and Tarneth were her coworkers – dock hands, really. They loaded up supplies between all the various boats and flying dinosaurs that made anchorage here. “They both left early for the festival” “I figured that when they didn't arrive for work”, she said, matter-of-factly, as she turned towards him and hopped up to sit on the shelf. “Don't think me unfairly for allowing them the day off. They both have tenure on you.” Selene didn't think it unfair. She just found it ridiculous: tenure in the afterlife. She shook her head at the notion. “It's quite alright, Horas, I assure you. I wasn't planning on going to the festival anyway. I'm just going to finish off my shift and then I can get back to my research.” Everyone knew about her passion. Why should she be quiet about it? She was a scientist. Unfortunately, as she found when she arrived in the city, they didn't need a scientist, they needed a warehouse worker. Horas came to stand beside her, picking up the jar of tree sap and inspecting it, turning it in his hands. “Your research, as you call it”, he paused. “You are chasing ghosts. Your scientific mind is trying to grapple with the fact that you were wrong. There is more to life than your science can explain. And now, instead of accepting that fact and moving on, becoming a true part of our community, you keep searching for something, anything, that would prove you right; that there is no afterlife.” He set the jar down, his attention turned back to her. “Even though the evidence of this afterlife is all around you.” “Is that your professional opinion?” She jumped down from shelf and took a few idle steps, her hands on her hips, her brow raised in skepticism. Horas was a therapist in his past life. It was part of the reason why there was so much tension. It always felt to Selene like he was treating her like his patient. “Always turning to sarcasm”, his brow furrowed and he ran a hand over his scalp. “Can't you see that your tribe is worried about you? You could have a home here. You could have a family, or friends. Instead you close yourself off, and spend all your time immersed in your 'research'”, he punctuated the word while his hands made air quotes. “The only company you've kept has been your Allosaurus” Selene walked off to a desk on the other corner of the room, several partially melted candles providing soft, warm illumination. There she picked up one of the order forms, ink on papyrus paper, and went with it back over to the tree sap jar, placing the form under it. The properties of this sap made it an ideal salve for burns. It would eventually be shipped to the High Garden tribe in exchange for cereal grains. There was no currency here on the island; different tribes merely bartered with each other for supplies they needed. “I can't give it up”, she replied, finally. “I know you and everyone else here thinks I'm crazy, but there's just something wrong with all of this. No one wants to hear me out, so of course I'm feeling a tad alienated. And Sunny never judges me. He's been here for me since the very beginning.” “Companion animals are healthy, Selene, but they aren't a replacement for human contact. You need to make friends” “I'll take it under advisement”, she said, curtly, as she walked back over to the desk and grabbed another order form. This one detailed another shipment to High Garden; this one of Sulfur. Wonderful, she thought. Another odor that would linger on her. “I know you're trying to look out for me, Horas, but right now, I'd just like to finish up my work. He stood there with a look on his face like he was appraising her. “Alright”, he said at last. “I guess I can't be upset with your work ethic. But at least try to consider paying the festival a visit. Who knows, might be fun.” He gave her a nod and then left her to her solitude. – It was an hour later when she finally finished her work and locked up the warehouse. Now she could finally get to her real passion. But before that, she would walk to the other side of town, beside the north wall separating them from the jungles, and visit the stables, or rather, the large trampled field next to the stable where a large metal pen with four meter high fencing contains the carnivores. Most of the dinosaurs that the tribe kept on hand were utility dinos – herbivores that were housed in the stable. There were several Triceratops that, due to their size, were able to carry very heavy loads; their horned, armored skulls great at clearing out brush and small trees. The tribe also had a half dozen Anklyosaurus; their large, club-like tail tips made them perfect for smashing boulders and aiding in mining. Though most of the tribes dinosaurs used to help them get around on a daily basis were Parasaurus; a little bigger than a horse, with similar temperament. She walked up to the steel enclosure. Usually, it would just be Sunny in here, but today he shared the pen with two dozen Utah Raptors. They stalked around the perimeter making their raspy trills, perhaps trying to send threatening. She put her hand up against the bars of the fence, letting the Raptors sniff her hand. They raised their heads and chirped; their version of a 'hello'. “Hello to you, too!”, she smiled and ran her hand through the crest of feathers on it's head. “Have you been good raptors while you're visiting us? Haven't been bothering the Allosaurus?” They looked at Selene and then glanced behind them, uncertainly at the tan and green Allosaurus – her Sunny – who was currently curled up in a ball, napping; one eye open, watching. These raptors were only being kept here until next week, when they would be transferred to a ship heading to Viking Bay. Of all of the dinosaurs here, only Sunny was once wild. All of the others were domesticated; bred in captivity. They were mostly docile to humans and other dinosaurs, but in regards to the cage, it didn't hurt to be safe. The gate to the enclosure was locked. Thankfully, Selene was given a copy of the key by the stable master since she was here every day. She grunted with exertion, opening it only a crack, just enough so she could get through. The Raptors all rushed over to her, poking her with their noses, probably sensing hints of Sulfur from earlier. “Gotta let me through”, she complained as she tried side stepping around them. “No, you can't get out. You need to stay inside”, she scolded as a few tried to sneak through the gate, unnoticed. The raptors all trilled at her, crowding in around her even more – they had wickedly sharp talons, and even though they were domesticated, accidents could still happen. “Sunny!”, she voiced in cautious annoyance. “A little help?” She couldn't see much past the herd of curious Raptors, but she noticed she was suddenly in a large shadow, which meant her dinosaur was probably standing. Though the shadow didn't seem to move at all, nor was the ground shaking, which probably meant he was taking his time and stretching. “Sunny!”, she complained with a bit more urgency. All these snouts poking at her were beginning to spike her anxiety. “Sunny! Speak!” She crouched down and covered her ears as her Allosaurus roared. This close to it, even with her hands over her ears, it was almost deafening. She could feel the roar in her bones and in her chest. A second later, all those noses sniffing her turned the other way, and the Raptors quickly slinked off to the far side of the enclosure. Selene stood up and dusted herself off, looking up at Sunny and smiling. “About time you decided to help.” She smirked. “So sorry for interrupting your beauty sleep.” Her dino gave a big yawn and then took a step towards her. “Alright, buddy”, she patted his front leg. “You want to come with me to the Temple? And then afterwards, we'll go out hunting and you can kill something. How's that sound.” In reply, he made a cooing sound, which she took as approval. – The adobe temple was resplendent in it's detail. The great domed ceiling was twelve meters high at it's peak. The outside featured carved designs embossed in gold. Much of the detailing was cracking and flaking off, but it was still quite impressive. Inside there was a central worship area, and in the middle of the room were statues depicting Odin, his wife, Frigg, and their son, Baldr. Or so she was told. Personally, she was never too interested in Norse mythology. By all accounts and observations, it was the oldest structure in the River Kingdom Tribe. From this single structure, the city of Oasis branched out. Though Horas had tried to convince her to come along for the festival in High Garden, insinuating that her research could wait, she didn't want to risk losing focus. She was a student of science. And science would not allow her to accept that she was somehow in a mystical fantasy land, where no one died and dinosaurs lived. It was impossible. And yet it was. Sunny was curled up at the base of Odin's statue. He raised his head and looked at her with the Allosaurus version what might be annoyance or indignation. He sometimes did that; like he could sense her thoughts. She went over and patted his flank. “Don't worry, buddy. Just because the fact that your sitting beside me shouldn't be possible, doesn't make me any less thankful for your company”. She took a few steps closer to the big carnivore and gave him some scratches under his muzzle. This seemed to placate him and he gave a content snort and lowered his head, resting it on his fore paws. He was a living, breathing example of everything that was wrong in this world, but she couldn't help but love him. For a huge, scary monster, who by all rights should not have been tamable under any circumstance, he was the best friend she had. In exchange for those days where she tended his wounds, he had decided to imprint on her, and now rarely left her side. A domesticated dinosaur. The others in the River Kingdom Tribe, and well, everywhere on Asgard, were so quick to accept this place. Horas would tell her that sometimes instead of questioning everything, you just had to accept it at face value. Accept it. Accept that of all the world religions, Norse Mythology was the real maccoy, and those Norse Gods, they apparently adored dinosaurs. Completely plausible. And if this was Asgard and it was the afterlife, why couldn't she or anyone she talked to remember dying? Horas would tell her, “Maybe our deaths were traumatic and our minds have locked away that memory”. Horas would say that. But Selene wasn't buying it. Selene's last memories were of her lunch break. She'd left the natural history museum where she was professor's assistant and had purchased a Salome sandwich from a street vendor. It was a great sandwich, but not worth dying over. And why would the gods put these chunks of metal in everyone's arm? She scratched at it – it itched whenever she gave it any thought. I mean, it was a piece of metal lodged in her arm that shouldn't be there. That alone should be enough to make others pay attention to her theories. She put the thought out of her head and went back to the task at hand. Today her goal was to unearth several partially exposed dinosaur fossils that appeared to be imprinted in the adobe floors. It was so annoying to her that the rest of this tribe didn't see the obvious: fossilization is a process that takes thousands of years, the age of which this structure is not. Hence, these fossils must be fakes. Of course, she experienced push back from the rest of the tribe, which is why today she and Sunny were putting in the extra work (though mostly her). She had brought in several chisels and a magnitude of brushes which Sunny curled up around, keeping them safe for her. She slowly lifted up one leg and slid her way over the dinosaur, and to the tiny pit of her equipment he created. “I know you think you are helping, but you really aren't making things easy, buddy”. She pocketed a few brushes and slid herself back over him again. He didn't bother moving to make things easier for her. Instead, he just opened one eye and silently watched. “Uh-huh.”, she said dubiously. “Don't give me that look. You don't get to look so amused”. To anyone else, they would just see an Allosaurus, but Selene could read him like an open book. And right now she was sure this open book was grinning at her. “You know”, she said, “you're lucky you found me. Before it was just all, 'roar, roar', constantly running around and eating things and running from bigger dangers. Now look at you. You're practically a house cat”. In response to this, Sunny gave a growl. “Yes, yes. Very threatening”, she coolly replied as she got to work carefully removing layers of dirt from the fossil. “You realize house cats did that too, right?”. Unfortunately the dinosaur had never seen a house cat. Just another thing the gods here decided didn't need to exist in the afterlife. Suddenly, she heard a deep resonating voice. It made her jump in surprise and drop her tools to scatter on the floor. “I'm not completely sure what a house cat is, but yes, I try to be at least moderately threatening. Why is life worth living if it doesn't keep you on your toes, or talons as it were”. … That accented male voice came from Sunny. After a moment of controlled breathing she managed to calm herself regain her composure. She bent down and scooped up her tools while remembering the obvious: dinosaurs can't talk. “Alright, alright”, she said as she moved towards the dinosaur. “Who else is here? Miguel, is that you?” Miguel was one of the guards and a practical joker. He was bored most of the time with his job and pestering her seemed to be his favorite past time. She looked around the room and behind Sunny. No one. Hmm. Maybe a two way radio? Except for as far as she knew, they didn't exist here. “No, Selene, it is me”, the voice said, in a exacerbated sort of way. Sunny had his head raised and was looking straight at her. She put a hand on the side of his muzzle, looking him in the eye. “You know, if this is a joke, it's a really cruel one. As I recall, I was speaking with Horas earlier today and he seemed to be insinuating that I wasn't spending enough time with other people. Maybe that I was humanizing you too much.” She stroked his cheek. “And now, supposedly you're talking to me.” She sighed and turned away. “This is a really mean way to drive home a point, Horas.” Sunny huffed and nosed her, almost knocking her over as she regained her balance. “This isn't a deception. This is me. Is it really so hard to believe that dinosaurs intelligent enough to ignore their baser instincts and urges, and form emotion bonds with prey animals such as yourselves, would be able to handle verbal communication?”. It was a good question, well phrased. A ridiculous one, but Selene was starting to get used to the ridiculous and even accept it. But she also had her sense of logic. What was left of it, anyway. “Yes, yes it is. But, by that logic why isn't everyone walking around and having discussions with their dinosaur friends”, she walked around him and didn't see anyone hiding or any gadgets that could transmit a person's voice. “They aren't?”, asked the voice. “Well, perhaps Allosaurus just possess greater mental faculties than the rest of the dinosaurs” “About that. Your brain is the size of a peanut.” She paused as the dinosaur regarded her and then quickly added, in case this wasn't really some trick, “No offense” “Oh, we're playing that card are we?”, Sunny the Allosaurus snorted. “Well, if we are comparing sizes, I'm using my whole brain while humans only use a small percentage of theirs at any given time. No offense.” Selene couldn't help but laugh. “Clever. It just goes to prove one of my oldest hypothesis's. Most people are idiots.”, she giggled and moved closer to Sunny and had a closer look at his muzzle. “But if that really is you, my friend, why doesn't your muzzle move when you talk? I suppose the question is mute since the shape of your mouth and motor control shouldn't allow you to speak so.. eloquently.” “You're quite right”, Sunny stated. Selene waited for him to elaborate. When it appeared he wasn't going to be forthcoming she prompted. “About people or..?” “Both of your statements; about human intelligence and my facial limitations. I'm not speaking verbally. I'm speaking in your mind.” “You mean like telepathy?”, she asked. Sunny nodded in reply. “Convenient. Thanks for informing me of that upfront so I don't go around the city holding conversations with myself like a crazy woman.” She paused and ran a hand through her hair. Did any other people here have this sort of relationship with their dinosaurs? She hadn't heard anything before now and she imagined if that was really the case, she would have noticed it by now. As much as Horas teased her, she wasn't really in her own little world. “Is this normal?”, she finally asked. Sunny tilted his head to the side, and gave her a quizzical look. “I'm not completely sure. I've never felt the need to ask the other dinosaurs about it. The larger ones I usually end up running from. And the smaller ones end up in between my teeth.” “Was that suppose to be threatening”, she asked as she went back to work on her fossils. “Not a threat. Just a fact”, the Allosaurus got up and arched his back, stretching, and then took a few steps towards her. With how big he was and the size of his stride, a few steps was all he needed. “What are you doing there, anyway?” “Testing a hypothesis”, she said as she worked the fossil with her tiniest brush. “By the way, I'm curious. Assuming this is really happening and that I didn't fall asleep or bump my head or something, how long have you been able to speak to me? And why did you choose now to start?” “I've been getting to know you. Ever since you rescued me and nursed me back to health, I've felt a trust between us. A bond. Which I felt was very unusual until we came here to this city and discovered a similar bond between other dinosaurs and humans. I suppose it wasn't unusual after all.” “You didn't answer my question”, Selene pointed out. “No, I didn't. Tell me what you are hoping to learn from the remnants of a tiny, dead creature.”, he said as he leaned over and sniffed at the fossil, his breath actually helping to blow some of the debris from the area. She was pretty sure this counted as changing the subject, but she chose not to press the matter. “Something isn't right about this place.” Sunny looked up from the fossil and cocked his head at her. “I believe this building to be only a few generations old. The general degradation of the adobe would seem to confirm that. But these remnants of tiny dead creatures”, she paused to consider how best to describe it. “These remnants would have taken many thousands of years to become like this” “That's it?”, Sunny asked in what sounded like a condescending manner. “Of course that's it.” “You mean to tell me that you missed an opportunity for great amounts of sustenance, a feast as you call it, just because you're trying to age check a building? And not only did you miss out, but you also deprived me of the opportunity as well.” Jeez, so melodramatic. “Don't go giving me that, 'poor starving Allosaurus' story. Technically the festival goes on for two days. But it's a little dangerous to travel alone”. “Didn't we forget something?”, Sunny said sarcastically. “I'm an Allosaurus. I'm much scarier than anything we'll find between here and the valley” “And what if we get overrun by smaller predators. Or if there's a rogue t-rex?” “Well, in that unlikely event where we have to run, I believe I'm faster. I certainly won't be standing in one place and allowing other carnivores the pleasure of eating us.” “Fine. We'll leave in a couple hours. But I had better not die. I haven't died yet on this island and I don't plan to start now”. Though she reflected, it would be fascinating if not grotesque to study her corpse. “Good. So we will still be able to make it there before night fall. And then you and I will both be able to eat well. If anyone is in need of a feast, it's you. Your body is so tiny. You could certainly do to add some more muscle.” Selene rolled her eyes and shook her head. “I can't believe you're giving me advice on my figure. I like myself just the way I am, thank you.” He didn't know what he was talking about. She was perfectly fit. She walked over across the room to the other fossil and began giving it the same treatment as she had the first. After a few minutes, she was beginning to notice something. “Hey, Sunny? Can you come over here and let me climb up on your saddle? I need a higher vantage point”. He laid down and let her get on the saddle before raising up to his full height.” “I'm still not sure what you are doing.” She looked from one fossil and back to the other. And then it finally hit her. These fossils were exactly the same; not just the same type of creature, but an exact match. A copy. “They're exactly the same.” “Which means, what exactly?”, the dinosaur asked in a bored tone of voice. “Which means, it's unnatural. It's fake!”, she exclaimed. “It means that this entire building which is the catalyst for this sprawling village that the tribe built, this building was weathered to make it appear older.” “And why exactly does that matter?” “It matters because, well, we are in Asgard; that's the entire notion which we have been told to believe. This is suppose to be the afterlife. So why would the gods put something here to deceive us?” “Maybe it's just because of my peanut sized brain, but I've having a hard time understanding this concept of afterlife. You are alive right now, aren't you? So a building in your human settlement isn't what it appears. What's the greater context?” Selene was silent for a few moments, sliding off Sunny's back and slowly pacing around the room. She wasn't sure she could properly convey her thoughts to him. Even being that he was somehow capable of communicating with her, he was still just a dinosaur, and understanding the world from that perspective. She'd need to sit him down and do a full theology class just to get him to understand the concept. In the end, it didn't really matter if he understood or not. Surely, if he hadn't started speaking to her, she wouldn't give it a second thought. “It shows that the world isn't as it appears. Meaning, we have a mystery. And if there's one thing humans can't help but try to solve, it's a mystery.” --- The experiment is proceeding as planned. Subject zero no longer shows any aggression. He has been sufficiently sedated. Our pharmacists are showing great improvements in the effectiveness of the narcoberry extract. The implant appears to be fused to the subject's flesh, with hair width tendrals interconnecting with his nerve cells, possibly linking it to the subject's nervous system. We will begin testing to see if the implant shows any signs of being affected by external stimuli. Subject will be exposed to visual and auditory stimuli. We will update you once this phase of the experiment has been concluded. -T Chapter 2 Sven wanted to visit High Garden because he was told he could meet Odin. Bjorn wanted to visit High Garden for the food. Freyja just wanted to go there for the challenge. She really could care less about meeting Odin. There were some in her tribe that believed her to be one of the gods, herself; a god hidden in plain sight. She liked the idea of that being a thing. It was a fun idea, and for that reason, as long as people didn't get out of hand with it and start fan-girling her, she was happy to roll with the idea. She never told anyone she was anything other than a regular human being, but she also didn't out right deny this mythical heritage. In the end, she wasn't looking for Odin's approval. She was just out here having the time of her life – well, her afterlife. Every day was an adventure. That was enough for her. The yearly feast at High Garden was, in a word, amazing. Days of festivities. All sorts of food from all the different cultures that existed here, influenced by everyone's time on Earth. Deserts were Freyja's favorites. Unfortunately her favorite desert from back on Earth still hadn't been perfected, based on the facts that no one had discovered cocoa trees. I guess that was something she could speak with Odin about. But in the end, it really wasn't the destination that mattered. It was the journey. For anyone who wanted a simple and safe afterlife, well, they were missing the point. This was Asgard. Tales from Earth told that it was full of Earth's greatest warriors. Obviously from being here so far, that wasn't quite right. But, plenty of things on Earth got lost in translation, and stories changed and evolved over the centuries. Asgard wasn't a place where the greatest warriors went after they died. Asgard is a place where great people go to become warriors. None of this was the final destination. It was just the journey. And the immediate journey, the one to High Garden - why did they call it that, anyway? It's in a valley! - the journey to High Garden was one of great peril. Any journey across this island was risky, and you never new what kind of alpha predators you would encounter along the way. So you brought your best friends and your best dinos, and a small arsenal of weapons and armor. Or you took a flier, like an Argentavis or a Pteranodon, are the clumsy seagull like birds known as Pelagornis. But that was the chicken's way out, and Freyja and her friends weren't chickens. Plus it's not like everyone on the island had a flying dinosaur friend. You had to tame one first and many of the fliers had a propensity of pecking your face off. The Viking settlement that Freyja helped to found didn't initially have a name. It started small, as settlements usually do, but then over time spread out all around the bay. Until at last a trader from the River Kingdom referred to it as “Viking Bay” and from that point the name stuck. Viking Bay never slept. During the day, black, wispy smoke clouds could be seen drifting into the sky from the forges up the hill from beach. At night, those same forges lit up the settlement with fiery, glowing dots in the surrounding darkness. Not everyone bore the title of Blacksmith, though everyone in the tribe at least had some proficiency at it. It was what the settlement was known for; it's what they used to barter with the other tribes. As a person got closer to the water, they would see the market. It started off as a few fish monger's stalls and spread out from there to include dozens of shops for all kinds of food and wares. And then finally you would get to the docks, with lines of small canoes docked there. They woke before dawn, Freyja and her friends, and began the process of packing for the journey. There were no roads on the island. The immediate areas around the tribes had dirt paths, but as you got further away, there was just wilderness. The three of them were in the stable. Freya was saddling up one of her Sabertooth cats – Flotti, meaning 'Freedom' in the old Norse tongue. She was tawny brown with black stripes along the sides of her abdomen, and was the fastest of the three Sabers. Against many of the larger Apex predators, speed and maneuverability were what would win a fight. Beside her, Bjorn carefully brushed out his Deinonycus's feathers. The dinosaur seemed to be enjoying it as it bobbed it's head up and down and made soft yipping noises. He had named her, Holly, after his old dog. In the far corner of the stable was Sven and his dire bear, Barry. Even though the bear was tamed, all of the other animals gave it a wide berth, giving it weary glances. “There's no need for you and your animals to stay so far away”, Sven was saying. “Barry is a well mannered bear. He's practically house broken. He wouldn't hurt a fly” “Have you seen the flies here, big guy?”, Bjorn laughed. He was right, of course. The flies here were not the annoying kind from back on Midgard – the Nordic word for Earth – the kind that Freyja would often swat at while outside. Flies here in Asgard were much more dangerous; most were around six inches in length, and often times would be found swarming in packs. “Besides”, Bjorn continued, “whenever I go near him, he growls at me.” “That's just his way of saying hello”, Sven replied. “I'm not willing to test that logic. When an animal growls at you, that means, 'stay away', not, 'hey, how you doing?'” Sven took a chunk of smoked Salmon meat out of the saddles shoulder pack and threw it up in the air in front of Barry, who snapped it up into his muzzle and downed it in one swallow. “Sven agrees, when an animal growls at you. But when a bear growls at you, it's a sound of endearment.” “A bear is an animal, Sven!”. Bjorn shouted in frustration as he paused brushing his dinosaur so he could flail his arms about, emphasizing his confusion at Sven's words. Freyja saw a brief grin from Sven, suggesting that everything he was saying was just to rattle poor Bjorn. Freyja chuckled, “So it's the Bear equivalent to purring?” “See”, Sven motions towards her, “Freyja understands” “Not really”, Freyja stated, “But Sven here is the bear expert. I only know cats.” “No, don't encourage him!”, Bjorn tossed the brush he was using in her general direction, and then swung into the saddle, giving Holly a soft nudge with his left boot and guiding her forward and out of the stable. “I'll be waiting outside.” “Is that because you can barely contain your excitement? Or is the thought that Sven has so much bear knowledge unbearable?” Freyja cringed. “Are you sure you weren't a dad in your past life? Because if not, your talents were going to waste.” Sven became quiet for a moment, resting his hand on the edge of Barry's saddle. “Old Sven was never a dad. He never had the opportunity”, he said softly. “I'm sorry, big guy”, she looked over to him and frowned. Sven was like this sometimes. Most of the time, he was the most jovial person around. But he let Freyja see another side of him. Maybe he was interested in her. If he was, he never officially made a pass at her. It could be too that he was just lonely. Everyone needed someone to talk to and confide in, no matter what they said. “I was”, he paused. “A lot of women felt I was intimidating.” “What? Intimidating?”, Freyja exclaimed. “Was it just that you were all Hulk'd up and the women you were dating thought you would break them?” He gave a soft chuckle. “Mostly the other way around.” Freyja didn't know what to make of that statement. Obviously, everyone was different on Midgard, but she had a hard time imagining Sven as fragile. Why would anyone worry about hurting him? She was trying to figure out a polite way to ask since it obviously was something that caused him pain, when he brightened up and said, “But enough of old Sven. Present Sven is what matters, just as present Bjorn and present Freyja matter. Besides, now is not the time to wallow on the past. We are about to embark on a great journey. If Sven is lucky, it will end with Sven meeting a god. That's not something you can say everyday!” With that he lifted himself into the saddle. “Come, let's be off!” She looked him up and down, just wearing a pair of cloth pants with his muscly chest exposed. “Aren't you going to put on some armor?” “Armor will just weigh Sven down” Freyja chuckled, “Suit yourself. Or don't, I guess, in this case. But if you fall off Barry and get eaten, you'll miss your chance to meet Odin.” – Twenty minutes later, the three of them were ready to go. Freya and Bjorn each wore hardened leather armor with crossbows. Sven had apparently thought better of his idea of riding off without even a shirt on and had adorned himself with a full set of chain mail, with a matching set for Barry. Instead of a crossbow, he had brought a DireWolf sword, which he placed in a scabbard connected to his bear's saddle. A few dozen others would be joining them in High Garden later in the day, though they would most likely be traveling by air. Most of the tribe would be staying behind. It's not as if everyone could just up and leave – forges still needed tending, fields needed to be farmed and the tribe's borders defended from wild dinosaurs. As they began riding south of the settlement, the sun was just poking up over the horizon, and there was a light breeze. A number of wild Pelagornis could be seen flying high overhead. The trip to the High Garden region would take them through a mountain pass. These same mountains that separated the two tribes was also home to the palace of Valhalla, located at one of the mountain's peaks. Sven was on Barry, riding in the center, with Bjorn and Freyja riding their mounts on either side of him. Sven looked up and shielded his eyes from the sun. “Why do you suppose we never see him?” Sven asked. “See who”, asked Freyja. “Odin”, Sven responded, motioning with his hand towards the golden castle at the top of the peak. “He's practically our next door neighbor, but it takes a feast to get him to come out” “Maybe he's just a foodie”, Bjorn laughed. “I could understand that! Hey, why don't we hold our own feast to Odin? Best case scenario, he'll show up, we'll all become friends, we'll go on a hunt and he'll invite us back to Valhalla. Worst case scenario, he doesn't show and there will be more food for the rest of us.” Sven patted himself on the chest. “As long as Sven doesn't do the cooking”, he stated. “Sven doesn't know how to do anything fancy. Just a chunk of meat, dry rubbed with rock salt and thyme, and cooked over an open fire.” Bjorn just continued to laugh. “I'm pretty sure you just described barbecue” “Whatever you call it, it isn't good enough for a god, otherwise Odin already would have joined Sven beside the fire.” “You bring up an interesting point though”, Freyja said, thoughtfully. “I'm not sure why Odin only makes an appearance in High Garden. Maybe it's the splendor of everything. Those High Gardians put a lot of work into it.” The truth was, she hadn't really pondered it, but she was beginning to think she should have. For a god to appear at all before a group of people could be regarded as favoritism. “So what you're saying”, responded Bjorn, “If we carve out some statues, we could maybe get a god as well. Obviously nothing as elaborate as those hundred foot sculptures in High Garden, but we could make some smaller ones. It wouldn't be enough to entice Odin, but we could settle for Thor.” Sven laughed, “Why settle for Thor? We already have a goddess among us” “That should give us an edge!”, Bjorn laughed. “As long as Freyja agrees to attend” She smiled at both of them. “If the food is good, I'll think about it.” The two of them kept chattering away as Freyja's mind wandered. They were just going though the mountains now, Freyja catching a last glimpse of Valhalla before it was hidden from view. I wonder what the gods are doing up there, she thought. From all her years in Viking Bay, looking up at the place, she'd never seen any movement. No one coming or going. No ominous lightning blasts in the area. Of course, Viking Bay was several miles away from it. It's not as if you would actually be able to see anyone 'people sized' up there. But you should at least be able to see something. Golden flying chariots? A pack of giant dire wolves? Were those things that the gods would have? For sharing the name of a Norse Goddess, she knew very little about the mythology. Just bits and pieces, really. As the mountain pass wound down the other side, a pack of Gallimimus appeared and ran past them, all yipping at each other in agitation. A moment or two later, and Flotti's hackles raised and she stopped and growled. The others on their mounts kept moving forward. “Wait”, she called to them, interrupting their conversation. They both reared in their mounts and looked back at her and immediately noticed Flotti. “Something spook your cat?”, asked Bjorn. “Ooooh!”, Sven exclaimed excitedly. “Are we about to be tested?” “She got a whiff of something”, replied Freyja. “My guess is it's the same something that those Gallis were running from.” The galli would run from anything, so unfortunately that in of itself wouldn't tell them what it could be. It could be anything from a raptor pack to a pack of allosaurus. Many of the predators in this area of Asgard wouldn't be hunting alone. Luckily whatever it was is down wind from them. So in theory, as long as they stayed out of sight, they should be able to go unnoticed. “Let's go slowly, but be ready to set your mounts running if needed.” Sven and Bjorn nodded to her and spurred their mounts forward. All of the talk from earlier had stopped. The mood was suddenly tense, as they were all anticipating battle, and hoping that whatever this island threw at them, that they would come out on top. Around the next bend, they caught a glimpse at the beast that blocked their path: a Yutyrannus – slightly smaller than a t-rex, with feathers covering most of it's body. It's possible they could score a lucky shot to the neck with a crossbow and the creature could bleed out. For their size, they were lightning quick. In the end, it wouldn't matter how much armor you were wearing if one of those got you in it's muzzle. It's teeth would slice through hide armor and chain mail like butter. A set of full plate would just crumple from the force, literally crushing whoever wore it. “The plan?”, Bjorn asked softly. Freyja took a deep breath. “We have two options. We either run past it while it's distracted, or we keep away from it and kill it from a distance. That's really it. The pathway isn't wide enough here to give us much maneuverability.” There was a third option as well that Freyja didn't bother to mention: they could turn around and head back. “Sven thinks the two of you should go on ahead. Shoot it with your crossbows, get it to give chase. Your mounts are both faster than it. You can outrun it. Barry cannot.” Usually Sven would be the first charging into battle, but in this case it made sense. He didn't want to risk losing his bear. And if Sven died, his body wouldn't regenerate until morning, making him miss the first day of the festival. “Alright”, Freyja replied as she clicked a bolt into ready position in her crossbow. “Bjorn, with me.” The two of them road off towards the Yutyrannus, which was currently ripping the flesh off of a smaller unidentifiable dinosaur. Freyja took the lead; her Sabertooth being slightly faster than Sven's Deinonychus. As her cat propelled them forward, she aimed the crossbow best she could at the alpha predator's neck, which was no easy feat while riding. She pressed the trigger and the bolt flew through the air and struck the creature in the eye. It threw it's head back and roared as Freya and Flotti rushed past. She glanced behind her, expecting to see Bjorn on her Sabertooth's heels. Instead, she saw his dinosaur veer towards the Yutyrannus, Bjorn struggling with the reins. She reared in Flotti just as Bjorn's Deinonychus leaped up onto the side of the Yutyrannus, Bjorn doing everything he could to stay on the saddle as his dinosaur dug it's claws into the alpha. The Yutyrannus couldn't reach them with it's muzzle, so it thrashed side to side, giving off another roar. Bjorn and Holly disappeared from view, but Freyja could see chunks of bloody meat being thrown into the air. A moment later, the Yuty fell over, Holly still attached to the neck, now on top of it, it's head bobbing up and down as it bit down, each time tearing away more flesh. It must have hit an artery, each pulse of the dying creatures heart sending fresh globules of blood onto Bjorn and his dinosaur, coating them in red. Feathers were flying everywhere like some crazy pillow fight. From behind came Sven and Barry. Barry was at a full gallop (is that the right term for a bear?). As he got close, Sven leaped off the bear into the air, his DireWolf sword unscabbard the point aimed down at the creature's rib cage. Sven roared as he drove the tip into the Yutyrannus's chest, and then the creature went slack – it's head hitting the ground with a deafening thud. Sven pulled his sword out of the Yutyrannus's chest and yelled, “That..was..awesome!” He tossed the sword to the ground and went over to Bjorn, who was now standing beside Holly breathing heavily. Sven slapped him on the back. “Sven couldn't believe his eyes when you dove straight into the beast. Taking advantage of the beast being blinded like that. They'll be singing stories of your deeds if Sven has anything to say about it!”. He laughed and jumped down. “Though in stories you don't realize how sticky blood is.” “He didn't plan it”, Freyja stated. “Did you Bjorn?” “No. As much as I agree with Sven, and agree that songs should be written of it; it was Holly's decision. I was literally just along for the ride.” He jumped off the carcass and cringed as he caught a whiff of himself. “I need a bath. Don't suppose I'm getting one anytime soon.” “Not until we get to the rivers of High Garden.”, Freyja responded. “And that's a problem since every predator between here and there will be able to smell us coming.” – The rest of the journey wasn't as much fun. It was difficult to be fun when you felt like you had to creep along, constantly vigilant over every sound, because any of those sounds could be something following the scent of blood. Freyja didn't have the nose of a dinosaur, but even her human nose could smell the oppressive stench coming off of Bjorn. Bjorn stayed quiet after the fight, owing to the fact that once the midday sun was upon them, the blood dried into a orange-ish brown sludge. He looked thoroughly unhappy as Freyja prodded her Sabertooth to take the lead. Her nose couldn't stand being downwind of him any longer. As they came out of the mountains they gained a few Raptors that tailed them. Freyja was able to see at least three of them at times, but they stayed out of range and mostly hid in the tall grass. A few Raptors, they could handle, which was probably the reason why they hadn't been attacked. The ones following them were curious but they probably wouldn't attack. Raptors, unless they had superior numbers, preferred to attack weak or wounded prey. With any luck, most of the larger carnivores in the area would be attracted to the overwhelming scent of the dead Yutyrannus. Freyja was sure that when they came back this way after the festival, there wouldn't be a trace of it left. They descended into the valley that was High Garden. The valley was surrounded by arid, sandstone cliffs, with numerous waterfalls around it's borders, cascading down into the many lakes and rivers inside the valley. Even before seeing the settlement, Freyja could smell the smoke from the cook fires, mingling with the pleasant floral aroma of the Cherry Blossom trees that were planted around the town. As their path wound it's way down, they finally got view of the town. There was a high stone wall running along it's perimeter, with gates on the North, East, and South sides. Most of the buildings within two or three stories, based on feudal Japanese architecture. They made their way down to the bottom of the valley, where a wide pathway lead them through the trees and to the North gate; two fully armored riders mounted on the backs of Spinosaurus stood guard on either side of it. The Spinosaurus were three stories tall, with a long snout like an Alligator, and a large dorsal fin running along it's back. The rider's saddles were strapped around the creatures' chests, with the rider sitting just in front of the fin. Both of the gargantuan dinosaurs immediately turned to stare at Bjorn, their nostrils flaring. As terrifying as these creatures looked, Freyja knew that they were domesticated. Still, hopefully their training ran deep; the smell of alpha dinosaur blood could still make even domesticated dinosaurs unruly. “Whoa, get a look of this guy, Shang”, one of the guards called to his partner, pointing at Bjorn and Holly. “We're suppose to welcome guests to the festival, but we can't let you in here looking like this.” “Guessing that's not your blood.”, the other guard, Shang, commented. Freyja looked up to them and then back at her friend. “He decided to solo a Yutyrannus.” “I didn't decide...”, Bjorn blurted out, and then seemed to hesitate. It wouldn't be good if he admitted that his dinosaur acted of her own accord. It might suggest that Holly couldn't be fully controlled, and a tamed dinosaur that couldn't be controlled was a liability. Bjorn had hopefully paused and connected the dots. “I just saw an opening and took it down”, he finished. “Well, whatever happened”, the first rider continued, “You're going to need to go East to the river and clean off. We can't have you going into town looking”, he coughed and raised a cloth up to the front of his helmet, “and smelling like that. You other two are welcome to go inside. You can either stable your dinos or keep them with you if no one complains and they are well behaved.” Freyja looked at Bjorn and chuckled. “We'll stay with our friend. Come on, Bjorn, let's get you all cleaned up.” --- Will post the next two chapters on January 17th. Thanks for reading!
  14. The Story of Scorched Earth. This is a fictitious adventure of a small group of individuals that get lost in the Arizona Territory as they are fleeing from a gang of thieves looking for the fabled Lost Dutchman Gold Mine during the early 1900s. In an area of that territory later known as the Superstition Mountains, they end up teleported into a strange land as they take shelter in a mine shaft from a vicious electrical storm. They find themselves lost in a strange harsh land called Scorched Earth. Rated M due to adult subjects and graphic violence. The cast of main characters in this story; Desert Pete. A middle age prospector, who is barely making a living off of his claim, he has come across a map to the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine that a stranger has brought with him while staying at the hotel in the old mining town of Oatman. Jessie. A Spanish American war veteran in his late 20s, he had been attracted to the Arizona Territory with the promise of finding gold in the surrounding mountains. He has won a map to the Lost Dutchman Mine from an old Mexican while playing poker in a saloon in Laughlin. Getting lost, while heading to Kingman, he has wandered into Oatman. Charlie. Age, mid 30s. He operate the local blacksmith shop at the stable where he would shoe horses, repair mining tools, and manages the livery stable for a living. Winslow. A newspaper reporter from the New York Times, who was researching a story about the Arizona Territory becoming a state and the latest gold rush around Oatman, he just happened to end up in the wrong place at the wrong time. Whitefeather. A Mohave youth, 17, from the nearby reservation, he worked as the room service for the Oatman Hotel located above the saloon. James. Age 38. He is the Deputy Marshal in Oatman at the time of this story. Dolly. Age 24. Barmaid and hooker who worked at the Oatman Hotel. The town of Oatman, Laughlin, and Kingman are actual locations in Arizona. Scorched Earth is based upon a paid DLC for Ark Survival Evolved. It is a desert themed map with dinosaurs and fantasy creatures such as dragons. Chapter 1, The Map to the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine. It is in late in the spring of 1904 when this strange adventure takes place. Rumors of prospectors finding rich gold deposits in the surrounding mountains has started a population boom in the tiny mining town of Oatman, which is located in the rocky hills east of the Colorado River in the Arizona Territory. Those rumors have resulted in an influx of those seeking to get rich quick, those seeking to get rich quick by supplying goods and services to the prospectors, and those that would get rich quick by swindling, even robbing, the prospectors in this mining town or stealing their claims. It has kept the local assayer office busy with filing claims in the surrounding area for those hoping to get rich quick and the deputy marshal chasing away those criminals that were robbing from the miners or attempting to steal their claims. The story begins when Peter, known to the locals as Desert Pete, has arrived late that Friday afternoon to pay a visit to the assayer’s office in Oatman to trade his small bag of gold nuggets for cash. He has had to walk several miles to town from his claim as he doesn’t have a horse and his burrow, used to pack his mining tools, has ran off on him at the last moment to parts unknown. “Where’s Jenny?” asks Jeff the assayer at the office when he sees Desert Pete coming into town without his burro. “I usually see you riding her into town every Friday when you come here to sell your gold.” “She ran off with that white Jack that’s been hanging around my camp the past several days,” Peter tells him. “It wouldn’t have been so bad had I had the chance to take the pack saddle off of her first so she wouldn’t have ran off with my mining tools. I’m probably going to end up finding them scattered all over the place when I get back to the claim in the morning. Fortunately, I had this in my pocket instead of in one of the saddlebags or at my camp. I’ve had issues dealing with claim jumpers that have been snooping around the past several days rummaging through my stuff.” “All the prospectors have had issues with them,” Jeff tells him as he takes the bag of gold and empties it onto the scales. “Deputy Marshal James has been kept busy chasing them out of the territory.” “It’s bad enough having to deal with the occasional four legged predators out there,” answers Peter. “Now, I have to worry about these two legged varmints as well.” “The more that the word gets out that there is gold in them hills, the worse it will get,” answers Jeff. “At least, you were able to bring this in with you. Several of the other prospectors working out there have had their stash stolen from their camps while they were busy working on their claims.” Having been paid for the gold he has brought into the assayer’s office, Peter decides that it would be better to stay into town for the night rather then chance walking back to his camp in the approaching darkness. Monsoon season has arrived early where vicious lightning storms can blow up suddenly to dump heavy rain and hail in short order. Such storms can cause dangerous flash floods throughout the numerous dry washes in this rugged arid landscape. With lightning flashing in the evening sky from several thunderheads surrounding the town, he heads over to the Oatman Hotel to rent a room for the night. There, he is assigned an upstairs room where he is able to take a bath in the commons down the hall and get into some cleaner clothes. Refreshed, with his backpack locked in his room, he heads downstairs to a small private dining room behind the kitchen where he orders a beefsteak for supper while sitting at the table with his good friend Charlie, who is sitting there with two other strangers, one dressed in a wool business suit, another dressed in an old tattered army uniform. “Where’s Jenny?” asks Charlie as Peter sits down in the one empty chair at the dinner table. “You usually leave her at the stable when you come into town for the night.” “She ran off after that white jack that's been hanging around my claim the past couple of days,” answers Peter. “You should have bought one of the gelded burrows instead of her for prospecting,” suggests Charlie. “She has always been good company, staying close to my claim when I was not using her to pack my mining supplies,” answers Peter. “Besides, I found her in trouble last fall with an old steer skull wedged into her front hoof. She makes a good watchdog by warning me when those blasted claim jumpers are snooping around.” “You will probably have a second burrow by this time next year,” Charlie tells him. “I don’t doubt that,” answers Peter. “I can be good company as well,” Dolly, who is the barmaid and hooker for the hotel, tells Peter as she massages his neck and back. “You are soooo tempting,” answers Peter with a smile. “It has been a rough week at the claim. I barely have enough money for the supplies I will need when I head back to my camp in the morning.” “Here’s your grub gentlemen,” Whitefeather, their waiter interrupts them as he brings in their meal. As they are finishing their meal, Peter and Charlie are getting to know the two strangers that are staying at the hotel with them. “I find it unusual that a big city news reporter would make such a long trip to a mining camp in the middle of nowhere,” Peter tells Winslow as the introductions are made. “As you may know, the politicians in Phoenix are lobbying Congress to turn the Arizona Territory into a state,” answers Winslow. “My boss sent me out here to get the story of why Arizona should become a state and not remain a territory. I am also wondering why there is a second gold rush taking place in a town that’s been basically a mining camp for years.” “What brings you to this town Jessie?” asks Charlie. “I got lost while heading towards Kingman from Laughlin.” answers Jessie. “I though that I knew the shortcut through the mountains to get there, but I got twisted up following the burro trails instead of the stagecoach road.” “You should have had a compass and a map,” answers Peter. “It’s so easy to get lost in these parts once in these mountains where everything looks the same.” “I do have this old map I won in a poker game back in Laughlin,” answers Jessie. “The old Mexican I won it from claims that it is a map to the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine. While it is suppose to be from this area, these landmarks just don’t make any sense.” “Can we have a look at it?” asks Peter. “Sure,” answers Jessie as he takes a strange looking parchment map out of his shirt and unfolds it on the table. “This is interesting,” comments Charlie as he studies the landmarks on the unusual map. “It looks like that Oatman might be this settlement marked in the lower left corner. I do see where finger rock is located on this map as well. I just don’t recognize any of the other landmarks on this map or what these three strange markers represent.” “I’m at a lost of what is to the North and East of Oatman if that is Oatman,” answers Peter. “There is nothing there that looks familiar. Dolly, go find Whitefeather. He is from the reservation that’s in that area. He may be able to recognize what we are looking at.” Dolly soon returns with Whitefeather who looks like he is in shock when he sees the details in the old parchment map. “Where did you find this?” he asks the four men. “It vanished from the reservation years ago.” “I won it from a seedy looking character in a poker game in the bar in Laughlin.” answers Jessie. “He claims that this map would lead me to the Lost Dutchman Gold Mine.” “Can you tell us what we are looking at?” asks Charlie. “According to the stories from my elders, this map was created by Chief Turok in the 1600s when he found a portal into a strange land while his tribe was fleeing from the Spanish invaders who were looking for gold.” answers Whitefeather. “The land was brutal due to the daytime heat, lack of water, terrible storms, and giant carnivorous feathered lizards that walked on two legs. The story goes that the Spaniards had followed them into that strange land where they found huge boulders of gold laying along a dry riverbed. While mining them, they were killed by a giant flying lizard that incinerated them with fire. Turok’s tribe was trapped in that strange land for years until one day, they found the portal to get back to this world. Many invaders to our reservation have searched for centuries looking for that portal to the land of giant gold boulders but none have ever....” Suddenly, their conversation is interrupted by a fight that breaks out in the bar when a group of ruffians storm through the door. Shouts of “Where’s Carlos!” are heard above the noise of kicked over tables and chairs. More noise is heard of running feet and doors being kicked in upstairs above them. A gunshot is heard followed by twin blast from a double barreled shotgun, then more gunfire as a bullet come flying through the wall facing the kitchen. “We better get out of here and fast,” warns Dolly. “That was Mike’s shotgun that he keeps behind the bar. Follow me out through the tunnel to the stable.” Charlie, who is the last one out, pulls the hidden door shut before following the rest of the party through the tunnel connecting the stable. The noise continues in the bar and upstairs area as more shots get fired. Sometime during the room to room searches, a kerosene lantern gets tipped over which soon starts a raging fire in one of the upstairs room. The townspeople, awakened by the noise, are rushing to the hotel with fire buckets, as they see the flames coming out of an upstairs front window. They are soon pinned down in a gun battle with the ruffians holed up inside. “We had better get out of town and fast!” warns James, the deputy marshal as he and Charlie quickly get seven horses from the stable saddled up. “That’s the Marcus Gang. There’s too many of them to take on at once.” “How do we get out of town without being spotted?” asks Jessie. “Lets head up to my camp for now,” Peter tells him. “Walk the horses up the burrow trail behind the stable until we are far enough away from town to ride them without being seen.” “Good idea,” answers James. “We will need to head to Kingman through the back way. They must have cut the telegraph wire somewhere before entering town. I got a telegraph message that they were in Laughlin stirring up trouble before the line went dead. Hopefully, they can all be rounded up once I come back with the District Marshal and his men.” Quietly sneaking out the back door of the stable office, the seven individuals with their horses, use the cover of darkness and the stable to start up the burrow trail. The light from the fire, reflecting off of the approaching storm clouds, give them just enough light to see where the trail is. Traveling single file up the trail, they find their way to Peter’s camp. “We better take shelter in the mine before that storm hits,” orders Peter as they stop just long enough to grab some beans, jerky, coffee, and some cooking utensils. Reaching the mine entrance, the horses are unsaddled and staked to a picket line at the mine entrance. The wind soon picks up as the lightning gets worse. The glow from the fire in Oatman soon vanishes in the approaching downpour that can be heard above the noise of the wind. Suddenly, a blinding bolt of lightning strikes just above the mine entrance causing a shower of gravel to splatter everywhere. The horses bolt in a panic pulling the picket line apart and head off to parts unknown. Then the rain and hail come pouring down. “There goes our rides,” warns Winslow. “Don’t even try to follow them in this,” warns Charlie. “They will probably head back to the stable in the morning.” “We had better shelter in here for the night, then be prepared for a long hike to Kingman in the morning,” orders James. Under the light of a mining helmet, everyone drags the saddles and saddlebags back deep into the mine. It is a sleepless night as the storm rages for hours. Then all is quiet allowing everyone to get some rest the best they can before daylight arrives. Author's note. The offsprings of that white jack can still be found today begging from the tourist that visit the ghost town of Oatman.
  15. This will be another one of my game play adventures. As always, they may be added to, or conclude with just the one posting to stir up interest in the various mod maps available for Ark Survival. Pandora 123 Adventure, a mod map for PC currently in development. Settings; Single player with taming, harvesting, leveling set at 3X. MODS; Ultra Stacks. Kraken’s Better Dinos. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered. Notes, I took off Marnimods Wildlife because it was upsetting the balance of the vanilla creatures of the mod when I made my first test play of this map. I had way too many low level camels and chickens spawning in with too few of anything else showing up. Therefore, this experience will be from starting the map from day one. One unique thing from player created mod maps is they save in the SavedArksLocal folder. Because of that, if I were to start with a new character, that character would wipe out my existing character for The Island and all other mod maps I am playing. By just spawning in a random location, your character will start out with all stats carried over from The Island and or other mod maps including all engrams learned. You still start out with nothing, but the crafting goes a lot faster as those skills are already learned and you can go directly to them as your resources permit. In the case of my character, he will start out at max level 105 with all necessary engrams learned and all states set. He will have a large reserve of engram points should he need to unlock something from the available list. The first impressions playing this mod map. Robinson Crusoe, as my character is called, finds himself waking up on the beach of this strange island. He is located on one of four spawn points called Overseers Beach. Located in the East shore of the main island, it is one of four spawn points available and is the default one that is on the list marked as easy. Looking around, Robinson can see an obelisk to the South close by surrounded by rocky cliffs that come down to the sea. It doesn’t look accessible from the shore although it can be access with a hike up the hill followed by taking a narrow path over to the terminal. Towards the North, there is palm dotted beach with larger trees heading inland to some large flat grassy areas most ideal for building a larger camp. Stones, dead trees, and bushes loaded with berries are easily accessible. Larger boulders are scattered about with many of them either along the beach, or at the base of a large hill that is mostly too steep to climb up. Several Dodo birds are about along with turtles, and other herbivores. While none are seen in the area, I’m sure that there will be spitters showing up given the time. Like when one first spawn in on The Island, all of the creatures that first appear are under Level 20 with many of them Level 4 to 12. Being the first day of the Valentine Event, there are a lot of crazy colors showing up on the various creatures including some low level Pteradons and those nasty sea gulls. The one good thing with Kraken’s Better Dinos is that the agro range of those pesky gulls has been reduced. After a quick survey of the area, I start out by gathering the resources to get basic stone tools. As there are no branches or palm ferns that can be picked up like Ragnarok, I do have to punch a tree to get the thatch and wood to craft a crude pick. Armed with that, I quickly gather the resources to craft up a stone hatchet, five spears, primitive bow, and about 50 arrows. Using the bow to kill off the local Dodos, I am then able to craft up five bolas and prep a set of thatch clothes. With the bolas, I can now deal with any raptors should they show up before I have a starter shack constructed. Using the Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered Settler’s Workbench for wood, I stock it up with wood and thatch from the nearby palm trees and fiver from gathering all of the bushes in the area. A 2x2 starter hut is constructed in the area where I plan to do a further camp expansion in the flat grassy area. The nice thing about this building mod is that all of it’s pieces are available by just unlocking it’s workbench. Also, all wall pieces are 1/3 taller which allows for sufficient headroom for large storage boxes and any shoulder tames. Three of them stacked is the same as stacking four of the vanilla ones. Later on, those pieces can be replaced with those crafted in the Villager’s Workbench which has the equivalent strength and requirements of stone structures. The Dino Gate is large enough for a Morellotop to fit through. The starter hut is then stocked with a large storage box, a spawn bed, a campfire, and a mortise and pestle. I place half of raw meat into the campfire and split the rest up to spoil for narc arrows. Suddenly, the air reverberates with the loud sound of thunder. Is there a storm coming in? Is there a volcano getting ready to erupt? Is there something happening at the nearby Obelisk? Is there some strange event about to happen? I have no idea as like on the starter location of Lost Island, it is a sound that occurs at random. Some low level Tribolites are spotted near the water giving early on chitin, pearls, a black pearl, and raw meat. At least, I can now make a pteradon saddle if I can spot one worth taming. Adding two more foundations to the starter hut, I gather the materials for a Refining Forge and place it down. Mining the boulders along the steep hillside, I am able to get 22 metal needed to start the refining process. Why 22 metal? Because I plan to use the Workbench of Kraken’s Better Dinos which requires 10 refined metal. As that workbench combines a Workbench with a Preserving Bin and cooking station, it is worth the extra effort to craft it at this time. It does not require a foundation to place it but I place it on one next to the forge anyways. About now, the first day is coming to an end as the custom music plays in the background. One can see quite well at night so long as they are not in any heavy foliage. Some Moschops are around but they want stuff that is impossible to obtain at this time. A thunderstorm rolls in this mostly peaceful night as I finally get the Workbench crafted and obtain a metal pick. Heading out into the cold, I go mining the boulder cluster by the beach for resources. I luck out by finding a metal ore rock hidden in that cluster of boulder. The forge is fired back up with that bootee, the stone and flint grounded into spark powder. By later that morning, I have a complete set of metal tools. With the arrival of the morning, it would be useful to have some utility tames regardless if they are low level. But before I obtain any, I need to get a barn started to protect them from the dilos that are starting to show up in the area. Cutting down all of the palms in the area and picking a lot of the bushes, I get the Settler’s Workbench busy crafting some 60 foundations. While it is doing that, I have spotted a Green Drop down the beach to the North. Heading for it, I spot a strange metal object in the sand which I will investigate later. The drop gives me some stone and narc arrows, and some basic resources. Coming back to examine the strange metal object half buried in the sand, I find that it is a Tek Sleeping Pod. It is still functioning containing a sleeping woman dressed only in her underwear. I am wondering just how it got there in the first place. Are there going to be other people NPCs in this Ark? Will there be more of them? Will there be a crashed ship somewhere? That will be a mystery that will need to be solved once I am equipped to do some serious exploration. Finally, I find a Moschop that asks for something that I have. It is quickly tamed up and put to work gathering berries, fiber, and killing off some pesky Pegomaxes. By the end of the day, I have the foundations down for the barn and enough walls in place to protect the tames. A Level 20 starter parasaur is tamed to be a berry gather and faster transport. His stats suck, but he will do for now. It only takes three tranc arrows to knock it out for taming with five Mejoberries. The next morning, I get the barn finished before heading out to explore. Meanwhile, a low level Bronto has moved in and is wiping out all of the trees. Knowing that he could get mad and destroy my barn if he burns his tail on the campfire or refining forge, I take the mochop out and get rid of it. Hard to believe just how hard a leveled up moschop can hit. The bronto is soon eliminated. A moschop can also harvest the raw meat and hide more efficiently that I can with a hatchet. I take half of the raw prime and store the other half. With the stack mod, it will stack and keep a lot longer then with the vanilla settings. With that out of the way, I head up the path to the top of the hill to look for crystal. Near the top, I see a Gally running in a panic. With the Bola handy, I spot a terror Bird close by and have to bola it. Crap, why is a Level 20 Terror Bird so hard to kill with a crossbow? Near the top, away from what looks like a pass, I find a metal ore rock and one crystal. I can see others higher up but it is too steep to reach them without a flier. A spyglass is crafted and the metal placed in the forge. Heading North along the beach, just past the Tek Sleeping Pod, I find another path up the steep hill. Taking my time, I spot a raptor pack on the crest in that pass. (Note, on the test game, an Alpha Raptor had spawned in with a pack.) I do have the raw prime and materials for saddles for them, but I’m just not going to try to take on three of them by myself to tame at this time. It’s too hard to bola three at once, then knock them out before they get loose. It was a disaster the last I that I tried that. Perhaps, I could bait them into a trap later on. Heading away from them, I get high enough on the hill to clearly see the lay of the land to the North. The sky is dominated by a giant tree with what looks like snow capped mountains shrouded in a strange fog. Something else to explore once I can get over there. Coming down into the valley beyond I follow a stream heading East back towards the beach as it is now getting late. At the end on a peninsula, there is a structure that looks like Stone Hedge. I find a much better Parasaur stuck in the trees. After clearing out the Dilos nearby, I proceed to tame this better level Perry, then follow the shoreline back to the barn just as it gets dark out. Using a raft is going to be risky while on the way back with the Parasaur, there was a Leed beached up on the rocky shore. Tomorrow, on day four, I may try to tame up that raptor pack by first building a pen, then trapping all three in it for taming.
  16. Lost Island Game Play (The Official Map) Settings; Single player with taming, harvesting, leveling set at 3X. MODS; Ultra Stacks. Kraken’s Better Dinos. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered. Marnimods wildlife. Kraken’s Better Dinos is a mod that enhances most of the abilities of the Ark’s creatures. Herbivores, such as a Doed, can now harvest berries. New tek creatures such as a Tek Trike and Giga are now in the map. So are several variations of new and useful creatures. New types of attacks are available on some dinos such as a stomp by the Bronto. Wild creatures may run away if they are badly hurt. It also offers a combo preserving bin, cooker, workbench that allows for the crafting of special foods from the special meat that some creatures will have when killed or from the milk of certain tamed mammels. Early, but less capable saddles are available for some creatures that have late more expensive to craft ones. Extensions can be made for platform saddles and rafts. Most interesting is the Valerian Reins that can be crafted from various rare materials. When placed on a flying creature, it enhances their speed, maneuverability, and stamina. Castle, Keeps, and Forts Remastered uses special workbenchs that allow you to craft building sections in those workbench thus freeing the player to continue to gather resources or start construction of structures. Like S+, you can pick up those pieces later. Foundations will also stack. Walls are 1/3 higher then Vanilla or S+ walls which gives your player more head room in placing storage chest and other items. You do not need to learn the individual pieces in this mod, only the three crafting workbenches which produce the equivalent of wood, stone and metal structures using the same building materials and amounts. That will allow me to save up those engram points for other useful items early on. Marnimods Wildlife spawn in at logical places in logical amounts. Each of her more modern creatures has a special taming requirement. Game Play; Whatever Ark spawns in. No boss fight, just exploration. As I do play other maps, I will use the Obelisks Terminals to transfer spare items and tames to make exploration and survival much easier. Like the Crystal Isle Map, I will start out with my character as Level 1 The Lost Isle Map. On this second playing on the official map, I will be starting in the Southeast region of the desert. Previous game play has been in the starter bay. That area of the map saw a lot of terrain changes from the days it was a mod map, to the present release. This map is huge, covering 150 square kilometers of varied well detailed terrain ranging from dense jungles to open plains and from frozen tundra to desert and volcanic wastelands. Numerous large winding and dangerous caves are scattered throughout as well as smaller ones suitable for building in. There are many islands of various sizes scatter throughout the map that are suitable for settling on. Keeping with it’s primitive theme, abandoned castles and keeps can be found on the larger and main island. The Southern Desert can be considered the Scorched Earth area and is an area of the mainland where a force field marks the southern boundary of the map. The Adventure. As I have spawned into the recommended starter zone on previous cases, it was time to try something different. I spawned in as a new player at the shoreline of the Eastern Desert. This is listed as medium difficulty. Actually, it was not that difficult as nothing dangerous spawned in along the shoreline at this time. However, to get better resources would require a trip up into the rugged badlands where the predators could be hunting in large numbers. I make the decision to leave the desert as soon as possible and sail North to one of the islands I can see in the distance. The first order of business for survival is to get level up, gather the resources needed to build a raft outfitted with basic tools, then check out the small islands to the North before it gets dark out and the dangerous creatures start showing up. Heading West along the beach as I started leveling up, I was able to get primitive tools and thatch clothes. A pair of Jarboas supplied me with raw meat and hide. Bolas are quickly crafted in case any Raptors or Terror Birds start showing up along the beach. While the canoe is an early craftable item, I decide to wait until I can craft a raft. The raft will give me a platform for placing some storage boxes, the Settler’s workbench, a spawn bed, campfire, and mortars and pestle. With a bola and bow and arrows, I take out a moth for silk and chitin before setting sail to one of the islands I can see in the distance. I cook up half of the raw meat splitting up the other half to spoil to start crafting narcotics. The trip is made to a group of islands called Sharkfin Keys. It is a series of small islands that are mostly flat, some barren, some with rocky peaks. A quick sail by determines that there are no threats on them that I can’t handle. I pick out the medium size one with a flat beach area and land the raft there. Fortunately, the Leeds on this map and happen to be elsewhere. A starter Settler’s shack is constructed just as the daylight fades in the western sky. For those that want to know where this is, it is the island Phlinger Phoo has built his Beach Shack on in his Lost Island series. However, I am on the far Southwest side in a large flat beach area on that island chain. The beach area has numerous river rock scattered about. I gather them with the stone pick until I have obtained 22 metal ore. Having brought along a sufficient supply of hide, I am able to get the forge built to process the raw ore into metal ingots. Why do I need 22 metal ore and not 12 you may ask? Instead of crafting an Ark workbench, I plan on crafting the Kraken’s Better Dinos one. Not only does it have both a workbench and preserver built in it, it also has the ability to process the special foods and saddles available in that mod. Like S+, the Kraken’s Workbench can be picked up and placed elsewhere. That workbench requires 10 metal ingots to craft. With one placed down, I craft up a metal pick and go to work mining river rock for more metal. By morning, I have my basic set of metal tools, a crossbow, and some tranc arrows. I find that the Dodos are plentiful on the little island. They soon supply me with more meat and hide. A mid level Parasaur is soon tamed and put to work gathering berries. She is knocked out using three tranc arrows to the head with four seconds between shots on the crossbow. Later, I add a mid level male so they can be mate boosted. Exploration on this starter island finds that there are several metal nodes in the base of the rocky crags. They are mined and brought back on Patty to process into more metal. Additional wildlife here consist of a pair of Brontos and Trikes. Both are in the rocky crag area. Some pesky seagulls are there with them as well. They can all just stay there away from my starter shack. Some lystros are also there along with a low level Parasaur that I take out with three stone arrows to the head, and a mid level male that I tame to mate boost the female. A trip is made by canoe to head towards the Green Obelisk so I can retrieve some cryopods I have stored there from my Amissa adventure. Landing on the shore nearby, I spot a mid level Sinomacrop and with a cage placed down, get it to walk into it so I can tame it without having to chase it all over the place. The tamed Sinomacrop makes easy work of reaching the Green Obelisk where I proceed to retrieve three Cryopods I have stored there. I also find a Moschop that just wants Tintoberries. Tamed, he goes into a Cryopod for transport. Checking out some of the supply drops nearby, I get an apprentice Doed saddle from one and some misc items from another An unguarded Giant Beaver Dam gives me cementing paste and pearls before I cross the open water to head to camp. Lacking a source for crystal for the spyglass, I make a trip back to the desert badlands to look for it up on the high crags. I take the canoe for the trip rather then risking the raft to some Leed waiting to ambush me. Good thing that I decided to use the canoe as I spot one in the shallows along the shore and steer to avoid it. With the help of my new Sinomacrop, I am able to avoid the predators that are now living inland finding some small crystal nodes on a plateau. I also luck out by obtaining two complete sets of desert armor from two separate green drops. Placing one set in the storage compartment on the canoe, I go back out to look for a Doed. Up on the plateau, I find two of them in a fight with snakes and a Terror Bird. I help them out in killing off the threats. As the higher level one is balled up from fighting, I take down it’s lower level buddy for taming. I only need him to gather stone for the Villager’s Workbench so I can upgrade my starter camp to a more secure installation. Building near the Green Obelisk is out of the question as it borders the swamp area which is crawling with Titanboas. Tamed, I place him into the cryopod, fly back to the beach, get into the canoe, and head back to my camp in Sharkfin Keys. The next morning, I decide that I could use a heavy lift flier in this new world. Rather then take the risk of attempting to steal dragon eggs and raising one, I head back to the Green Obelisk and make the transfer to the Amissa Ark where I have a strong Lightning Dragon living there on Pirate Island. He is the second dragon that I obtained while looking for a Doed on that Ark. He was the highest level that can spawn in on that map, a Level 190. Just a note on the dragons (wyverns) on that map. While the standard Scorched Earth wyverns can be transferred to other maps via the Obelisks, the custom Amissa ones cannot. With the Sinomacrop uploaded, along with some chitin to feed him, basic items uploaded for me, and everything else in a storage box, I make the transfer to Amissa. On Amissa, I download the Sinomacrop and it’s food, then fly it over to the Pirate Base. At the base, I check on my tames, check their food supply for them in the feeding trough, then go up on the roof to get Tesla to fly back to the Obelisk Terminal. Uploaded, I check what is left behind finding that Valerian Reins don’t transfer as a saddle would, so I make sure that it is uploaded into the terminal before I transfer back to Lost Island. Back on Lost Island, I take Tesla over to the desert to gather sand and cactus sap for crafting a Thorny Dragon saddle. While I could use a Stego for gathering wood, a Thorny Dragon is faster and will reduce the weight of wood in it’s inventory. I find that the desert area has changed a lot since my last visit. The area has become infested with raptors, snakes, hell pigs, and terror birds. Tesla cleans out the threats as I go to work gathering those materials for the saddle. Before leaving the desert area, I locate a Thorny Dragon and proceed to tame it. Placing him in a cryopod, I head back to the Sharkfin Keys. The next morning, I put Thorny Beaver to work gathering wood for the Villager’s Workbench. He is super efficient in getting wood from the palms and wood lying on the beach, much better and faster then a Stego in Hardened Plate mode. Danny the Doed makes short work in gathering some 10,000 stones from the boulders and river rock on each trip I make with him. Stone is the item that gets used up quickly as I start the crafting of an 8x10 barn for the tames. Getting thatch has become an issue as large amounts of it are also needed in the Villager’s Workbench. I find that my Moschop is as efficient in getting large amounts of thatch like the Thorny is at getting wood. The work gets interrupted when one of those pesky seagulls agros on my Moschop. Instantly, all of the tames are chasing it off with Tesla finally frying it with his lightning breath. With the tames sorted out and brought into the half finished barn, I finally get the basic structure done by nightfall. The next morning is spent in detailing out the barn as I construct a loft with a bed and storage above the work area of the barn. A dock is added with the provisions of building a shed for an Amargasaurus should I decide that I want to tame one. They tend to spawn in three locations on Lost Island. Those are the Murder Snow, the volcano badlands and the southern desert. From past surveying of those areas, the Murder Snow is out. One can easily see why. From aside of quickly freezing to death even with fur armor, the area is a mosh pit of death from the numerous predators that keep spawning into that area, an impossible task unless a well prepared tribe is working together to tame one. The nearby volcano area is better, but so rugged as to be nearly impossible to travel through on foot. Therefore, the Southern Desert looks to be the best choice from what I have observed flying over it. I can build a taming pen with double walls to keep the predators from hitting it and drop one into it for taming. However, that is going to require taming a Quitz given that I have been unable to pick one up off of the ground with Tesla. I spot a mated pair of dilos chasing wild moschops and parasaurs over by the big rocky peak that has metal rocks. Checking them out with the spotting scope, I decide to bola and tame them as they are high level. Quickly tamed, they join the other tames inside of the barn. Later, while out mining metal, I spot a level 135 lystro and tame it. I bring it back in a cryopod rather then attempt having it follow me through the rock strewn inlet where there is a shark living in the water. It was risky enough bringing the dilo pair back to the barn that same way. As Starter Patty has alerted to me to more predators in the area, I notice the three resident wild parasaurs running all over the place. They are being chased by a Level 135 female Dilo. I bola and knock her out for taming as she will become a second egg layer in the barn. The pesky gulls continue to be an issue in spite of placing bars across all of the barn windows. It is difficult to kill them either with the crossbow or using Tesla’s lightning attack. Time to go find a high level ptera to clean them out. I do have several pteras living on the islands of Sharkfin Keys but they all check out at Level 20 or less. Packing a saddle, several raw prime meat, and traveling light, I head North to the open grassland. Among all of the low level ones living there, I spot a Level 135 female. I drop her with a bola where she falls into a rugged rocky slope that is free of threats. With the careful use of three tranc arrows, she is quickly knocked out. Four raw prime meat later, I have my Trixie and fly back to the camp. A trip on Tesla is now made to the desert to obtain toughened hide and organic polymer that I will need for another set of Valerian Reins. I find a Sarco inland taking it out for 278 toughened hide. In the high desert, I find mantas which give me the organic polymer I need as well as lots of chitin for my Sinomacrop tame. I have to work quick to kill and harvest them with Tesla as several Death Worms are approaching me from several directions. With the required materials, I head back to camp to craft up the Valerian Reins for trixie. What a difference those things make on a petra. As soon as I place them on her, her stamina is doubled along with major upgrades in hit points and health. Best yet, not only is her flying speed doubled, so is her maneuverability. When landed, petras can walk backwards under Kraken’s Better Dinos. We ambush the pesky gulls from the air soon clearing them from the sky and gaining several levels in the process. That’s the progress for now playing in this single player session of Ark. Enjoy reading about this adventure.
  17. Here is my concept for if Acanthostega was added to the game. Unfortunately I'm not the best when it comes to art, so most of this just consists of text. If you do decide to read it all, would you like to see this creature in the game? What other creatures would you like me to make concepts for? Wild: Acanthostega plays a unique role in the ARK’s swamp ecosystems. Acanthostega primarily eat leeches, so they help remove the parasites from larger animals. Because of this, Acanthostega aren’t hunted, as keeping one around could save a predator’s life. When a predator does decide to attack one, Acanthostega have slippery skin that allows them to break free from a grab and gives Acanthostega enough time to retreat to the water. Domesticated: Very popular among amphibian lovers, Acanthostega will travel with its owner on their shoulder and aid them in their adventures, from the densest swamps to the driest deserts. Acanthostega can always aid in removing those pesky parasites, eating them and obtaining their precious resources. Acanthostega seem to always be coated in moisture, making a survivor holding one very difficult to grab, as well as keeping the person or their dinos relatively hydrated. Ingame Information: Tamable: Yes Ridable: No Saddle: None Breeding: Yes Egg: Yes, can make Simple Kibble Poop: Small Size: Small Diet: Carnivore Group: Amphibians Temperament: Passive Torpor Immune: No Stats (lvl 1 tamed): Health: 125 Stam: 150 Oxygen: Infinite Weight: 65 Melee: 10 Speed: 100 (Faster in water) Attacks: Bite (20X damage to Leech and Lamprey) Abilities: - Leech Killer: Will automatically remove leeches/lamprey from your player or dino if on your shoulder. Also harvests them. - Slippery: Acanthostega can't be picked up by any creature but a Hover Skiff. This buff will carry over to the player carrying Acanthostega. - Stay Hydrated: Spino, Shadowmane, and Tropical Wyverns will constantly have hydration buff when their rider is carrying Acanthostega. The player's water will also drain at only half the speed. Found: Swamps Maps: All Maps Taming Method: Have a wild Acanthostega remove leech/lamprey from your player or dino. Favorite Foods: Leech/Lamprey Drops (when killed): Meat Hide Fits Through: Any Grabbed by: Player, Skiff Trapped by: None Damages up to: Thatch Variants: Aberrant Acanthostega
  18. As I complete the final chapter on the latest adventure, I am currently working on two story ideas based upon Ark Survival Involved. Story idea one. This is an adventure of a small group of individuals that get lost in the Arizona Territory as they are fleeing from a gang of thieves looking for the fabled Lost Dutchman Gold Mine during the early 1900s. In an area of that territory later known as the Superstition Mountains, they end up crossing a strange shimmering barrier as they take shelter in a strange cave from a vicious electrical storm. They find themselves lost in a strange harsh land called Scorch Earth. Outline; It is in the spring of 1904 when this strange adventure takes place. Rumors of prospectors finding gold deposits in the surrounding mountains has started a population boom in the tiny mining town of Oatman in the Arizona Territory. It has resulted in an influx of those seeking to get rich quick, those seeking to get rich supplying goods and services to the prospectors, and those that would swindle, even rob, the people in this mining town and on their claims. This strange tale starts with Peter, known to the locals as Desert Pete, has rented a room for the night at the Oatman Hotel. Having been paid at the assayer's office for the small bag of gold he has been able to extract from his claim, he is at the private card table in the backroom of the saloon with three other men, Jessie, a drifter that happens to be staying at the hotel for the night, Charlie, the Blacksmith that manages the local Livery Stable in town, and Winslow, a freelance reporter working on a story on the Lost Dutchman Mine for the New York Times. All three men are involved in a poker game with Peter who is hoping that his luck will allow him to increase his earnings for the week. Limitations; I plan on dropping the characters into Scorched Earth, but without Specimen Implants. Story idea two. The Genesis Trip, A Most Strange Adventure Into the Future. A fictitious flight aboard of one of Elan Musk’s Starships that is heading to mars with a cargo of engineers and their supplies that are part of a continuing project to build a colony for one million settlers on the Red Planet. After a collision with a meteor in space, that destroys their ship, they find themselves fighting for control of a giant interstellar colony ship that has been taken over by a mutated evil scientist of the 19th century, then later for their survival on a strange prehistoric world in a star system in some unknown part of the Galaxy. Outline; December 6th 2031. Starship 007 has finally reached Mars having been placed into stable orbit. There, it awaits clearance by Mars control for landing as it gets orientated to break orbit for descent to land at the colony site. After maneuvering into position, Starship 007 gets it’s clearance to land on pad 15. With the concordance programmed into the computer, the main engines ignite at the proper moment to start the ship’s descent to the assigned landing pad. Without warning, the ship gets struck by a meteor the size of a baseball. It goes crashing through the forward dome. In a microsecond, it takes out a support strut causing one of the panoramic windows in the ship to blow out. The trajectory leaves a baseball size hole through all decks, the cargo hold, and a fuel storage tank the full length of the ship. With alarm bells screaming, everyone in the observation section of the ship is sucked out into space. Those down below attempt to get into their space suits. The effort is mostly unsuccessful as internal bulkheads are failing from the rapid pressure imbalance. Anything not tied down is flying out the hole left by the missing window. All, but those in the airlock are soon dead from rapid decompression. Knocked out of it’s landing trajectory by the venting gasses, 007 ends up crashing into Mars at orbital speed when the few survivors, now in their spacesuits, are unable to land the crippled ship due to the damage to the control systems and the lost of fuel from the punctured fuel tank. Fortunately, the ship crashes into a hillside just outside of the colony perimeter. Rescue teams are quickly sent out from the colony command center. They find the remains of Starship 007 scattered around the impact crater in the hillside. There are no survivors. The morning of December 6th, 2550. Captain Pike is the first person to wake up in the strange environment he finds himself in. His last memories before being killed was of those hastily getting into a space suit before rushing up to the Bridge only to find that he had no way to initiate a controlled landing as he watched in horror as his ship plunges into a Martian hillside. He is still in a space suit, but it is in one of a totally unfamiliar type. Finding that it is safe to do so, he takes off the helmet to breathe in the fresh slightly humid air. It is such a contrast from the stale artificial environment everyone has had to endure the past seven months. Looking about, he is shocked to find that he is not back on Earth or some strange planet, but in some sort of a huge ring like biosphere containing an artificial environment of landscape, mountain ranges, lakes, rivers, and clouds, along with numerous futuristic looking structures. He is looking at an artificial world contained in some sort of a massive habitat ring that seems to stretch on forever. Strange looking prehistoric birds can be seen flying high in the artificial sky. Through the semitransparent curved ceiling of this massive ring, he can see the rest of the ring along with the supporting ship, a second ring attached to it, the stars, and some strange earth looking moon in orbit around a giant gas planet that looks similar to Jupiter. This Genesis Ship, as it is called, is absolutely gigantic. Being nearly 500 kilometers long with two parallel slowly rotating habitat rings about 100 kilometers in diameter, it is a shock to Captain Pike just how massive this artificial world in this star ship really is. The ring they are in appears to be some 20 kilometers wide with a ceiling height of some 10 kilometers. He see clouds floating in the sky as well as holographic ones showing up on the semitransparent dome ceiling above them. The rugged terrain curves up to the horizon where it is cut off by the dome ceiling from direct view. Gigantic support beams line the outside of the ring as well as forming bulkhead like cross sections inside of it. “Where are we?” asks Engineer Scott who has also just appeared into this strange new world. “The last thing that I remember was seeing the ground rushing towards us.” “I don’t know,” Captain Pike answers him. “Somehow, we must have been reborn into this futuristic Starship. I see more of our people in spacesuits starting to show up. Lets get them all together and find out how many of us survived that crash.” Crew leader Jane Conway is the next one to show up as she walks over to the other two men. “What the hell just happened?” she asks Captain Pike. “The last thing that I remember was watching the observation deck window being blown out before I was sucked out into space.” “We were struck by a meteor,” Captain Pike answers. “It did so much damage to the Starship that we ended up making a crater on Mars.” “How in hell did we end up here?” she asks. “Just who would have had the ability to build this ship that we are on?” “I don’t know,” he answers. “One thing is for certain. It looks like that we are on some kind of a station in orbit around that earth like world outside the sky dome. That’s one mystery we are going to have to find the answer to once we can locate everyone that survived the crash. Lets look for the others and have them gather around this platform. Then, we can plan for our next move and figure out where the hell we are.” Limitations; I plan on this group of survivors following the game play similar to Genesis 2, but with more emphasis on exploring the internals of the ship, solving the mystery of what has happened to the bridge crew, escaping from the Eden Ring after Rockwell has destroyed the ship, and getting a colony established on a primitive hostile prehistoric world with some of the cryopod survivors.
  19. A totally new adventure using the same characters in a current 2020 setting. Tunguska, a land lost in time. A story of a group of friends traveling together on an unusual vacation to Bermuda during the turbulent times of 2020 that end up lost in the Bermuda Triangle. The story is based upon the popular dinosaur survival game known as Ark Survival Evolved. The map is a user created mod named Tunguska, a series of islands that formed as a result of an asteroid impact upon some unknown world trapped in the prehistoric past. Characters in this adventure; Michael and Caroline Allen, age 73. Michael is a Vietnam era Veteran that served in the Rangers in 1968. He suffers from paralysis below his waist as a result of a combat injury while on a covert operation in Laos. His wife is a retired head nurse from the U of M medical division. They both are living in a retirement community in Ann Arbor. Michigan Denny and Julia Pratt, age 68. Neighbors and good friends of Michael and Caroline. They also live in the same retirement community having served in the military together during the first Gulf War. They had planned to travel together in the spring of 2020 on a European Cruise when all tours were abruptly canceled in late March due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. Joe and Mary Reeves, age 44 and 42. Newlywed couple. Joe works as a software engineer at the U of M while his new wife works in administration at the University. Joe has a son, age 18, from a previous marriage. His first wife had passed away from ovarian cancer. Sarah Wright is the 17 year old daughter of Mary Wright who’s husband was killed in the War of Terror. Dr. Sanders, or George, is head professor of the Archaeology Department at the U of M. Age 64. A widower, who had lost his beloved wife to an auto accident some 20 years ago, he has hidden the pain of that tragic event by burying himself into his research of prehistoric history. Recently, he has been traveling with Dr. Croft on both research trips and spring break vacations. Rumors are that they may be taken a serious interest in each other. Dr. Croft, or Sandra, is a historian of ancient languages at the U of M. At an age of 62, she has remained single preferring to spend her leisure time in reading stories and watching movies of the ancient past. She became an avid fan of the Game of Thrones series of novels and the HBO series of movies. She and Dr. Sanders had traveled together on a custom tour of Croatia in 2019 where they visited many of the villages that were used to film the Game of Thrones series. Carlos and Micky operates a charter boat service in a remote village outside of Freeport in the Grand Bahamas Island. They specialize in taking small groups of tourist out on deep sea fishing expeditions or serve as a ferry service to several private islands in the area. The Grand Bahamas island chain happens to form the West corner of the notorious Bermuda Triangle, a mysterious area of the Atlantic Ocean noted for the unexplained disappearance of numerous ships and aircraft over the past 75 years. Dee and Jerry work for Fantastic Tours, which operate out of The Grand Bahamas. Jerry is the company manager while Dee is their booking agent who makes all of the travel arrangements. Tunguska is an actual location in Siberia that was flattened by a meteorite that exploded with the force of a nuclear weapon. In this story, it is a player created map for Ark Survival Evolved. It is a series of islands created by the impact of a large meteorite. The main island, a crescent shape rim of the crater with the peak forming another island surround by other islands of various climates. Chapter One, The unexpected vacation. The year 2020 has been a most disruptive time in Michigan. It started in mid March when Governor Whitmer ordered all schools and collages to shut down for three weeks due to the Covid-19 Pandemic that was being hyped by the news media worldwide. The announcement resulted in panic buying in the stores as they were promptly cleaned out of all cleaning supplies, toilet paper, paper towels, nearly all canned and boxed goods, fresh meats, bread, milk, and just about everything else consumable related. People were in a panic as they started staying home listening to the 24-7 media propaganda to shelter in place. Shortages of those essentials with rationing soon became the norm for the next several weeks. By May 5th, the disruptions had been made worse with the shutdowns of every business the Governor declared as nonessential including churches, barber shops, beauty parlors, gyms, funeral services, weddings, and bars. Unemployment quickly soared to depression levels. It soon looked like that the forced shutdown would continue indefinitely with no end in sight. Michael, Caroline, Denny, and Julia, were getting bored with it all as they found themselves turned into prisoners in their retirement community apartment with nothing to do but listen to the depressing news or surf the internet for some entertainment. With their planned European Cruise having been canceled along with all local activities they were active in, including those sponsored by the retirement community, they had been left with nothing to do but surf the Internet or work on various hobby activities that they could do in the confines of their small one bedroom apartment. It was with a surprise that May 5th when there was a knock on their door by a masked USPS driver who delivered a package from Fantastic Tours to Michael that required his signature, given that all such deliveries were going directly to the community office to be delivered with their daily meals to their apartments. Getting together with Denny and Julia, their next door neighbors who had also received the same package with a return address from Fantastic Tours, a travel agency they have done business with on a regular basis, they proceeded to open the mysterious packages. Inside is a travel brochure to Grand Bahama Islands, the travel agenda, all of the paperwork required for overseas travel exemptions under the current travel ban, and a letter from the manager of the travel agency. “This is most interesting,” Michael tells the others as he reads the note enclosed in the package “Jerry has arranged for us to go on a special group tour to their private resort in the Bahamas for a month. He states that this trip is to make up for the one he was forced to cancel and that all of our expenses will be taken care of. He states that he will be traveling with us along with Dee, his secretary, to serve as our guides. We are to pack light and will be picked up by private limo on May 11th at 9AM where we will be taken to board a private charter at Ann Arbor Municipal Airport. The only requirement are that we must continue to shelter in place and will be tested for exposure to the COVID-19 virus on Friday. We’ll be traveling together as a group of twelve.” “Sounds like that this should be a most interesting trip if Jerry and Dee are going along with us,” answers Denny. “I do believe that they wants to be sure that this is a smooth trip for Michael,” answers Caroline. “Traveling abroad to unknown destinations has been a problem for Michael in the past with customs and finding places to recharge the batteries in his mobility Amigo.” “It’s a great excuse to get out of this prison,” reports Michael. “Outside in the fresh air is so much better then being confined in this apartment for months on end with no end in sight.” “Is there any other information about the other six people that will be traveling with us?” asks Denny. “No,” answers Caroline. “I guess that we will find out who they are when we board the private charter this coming Monday.” “We should get prepared for this unusual trip” reports Michael. “Lets take advantage of getting away from this COVID-19 insanity before Governor Whitmer decides to place the entire state under martial law. I’m going to call the travel agency to confirm the trip.” That Monday morning, around 8:45, they get a phone call from Dee to confirm that they are ready for the trip. She tells the two couples that they have tested negative for the Covid-19 Virus and that she will be escorting them from the retirement community to the waiting limo in about ten minutes. “We’re ready,” answers Michael and Denny. The limo, a vehicle similar to a community bus, comes equipped with a handicap lift designed to handle Michael’s Amigo. It also handles the luggage the two couples have brought down from their apartments using a luggage cart. Dee drives the bus to the administration building on the U of M campus where she picks up their other six passengers. They are introduced to each other as she drives the custom limo to the airport. “It sure is great to get away from the insanity in Michigan,” Joe tells Michael. “It’s been such a pain to work from home when my son needs to use his computer to search online for a job, any job.” “Even though I have access to my network at the U of M, it’s been a hassle having my work constantly interrupted by lag due to the heavy internet traffic,” reports Mary. “Don’t you have the best high speed internet available to you on the University in Ann Arbor? asks Michael. “We do but it is being swamped by all of the people being forced to work at home as well as by everyone else in town that is using it for Zoom Meetings and streaming entertainment,” answers Mary. “It has been tough at times with timing out when I have to start over and over while filling out my resume,” reports Tod. “The applications will not accept any text pasted into them. At night, I have had issues with high ping when playing Ark Survival Evolved online with my friends.” “It will be great just to get away from it all for a month,” Sarah tells everyone. “It has been so boring being stuck in the basement trying to chat with my friends on Twitter.” “I know that feeling,” answers Michael. “We have been so used to traveling to see the sights around the world. It’s so much better to see them in person then on a big screen TV using You Tube.” “Would it be rude to ask you how you lost the use of your legs?” asks Sarah. “Not at all,” answers Michael. “At one time, I would have never told anyone, even the crisis workers from the VA, about what happened to me that day in Laos. The day that I faced that demon turned out to be the happiest day in my life. That is when I met and fell in love with Caroline.” “I was on a covert patrol in Laos where we were observing activity on the Ho Chi Minh Trail. We were heading back to our pickup point traveling through heavy brush when Root’s grenade went off while still hooked to his web belt. A fragment of that grenade hit me in the back severing my spine. I was powerless to help him as he laid on the ground screaming in agony from a huge hole in his side. Our medic was unable to do anything about the pain. He died an hour later while we were being evacuated by helicopter to the nearest field hospital.” “Oh, how awful,” answers Sarah in shock. “After I had went through my recovery and post traumatic stress therapy, I was able to find employment in architecture design. At first, all of that work was done through drafting on large sheets of paper. I helped my company set up design work on the computer when they were able to obtain one of the high end IBMs using the newly develop AutoCad. As computer technology caught up with the potential of using CAD for drafting work, it really speed-ed up the process of architecture design for my employer.” “That’s great,” answers Sarah. “Few of us realize that at one time, computers were the size of huge cabinets and had very little graphic handling capability.” “Cad really took off when high resolution monitors became available with large format plotters,” answers Michael. “Unlike your 1080P on your laptop, ours 1080P equivalent were of the CRT type that weighed some 400 pounds and cost several thousands dollars.” “That’s incredible” answers Tod. “And I thought that a good gaming system was expensive.” “It took the invention of the blue LED and the large scale interrogated circuit to make to make the home computer, then laptops and flat screen monitors a reality,” answers Michael. “No one could ever imagine in the 80s that the home computer would become so powerful, or affordable, that you could play a video game with the graphic quality of watching the movie Avatar in real time at high resolution.” “It certainly makes it fun playing Ark Survival Evolved,” answers Tod. “Taming dinosaurs and riding on them like horses, what a ridiculous reality such a concept is in your computer game,” answers Dr. Sanders with disgust. “The world of Game Of Thrones is just fantasy as well,” answers Dr. Croft. “At least, Tod has the ability to ride on dragons in that game. One can only imagine what that experience would be like for real.” “I think that we have all been cooped up too long in our homes with nothing to do,” answers Sarah in an effort to defuse the conversation. “Lets look forward to getting away from it all for the next four weeks.” Arriving at the airport, the custom limo is waved through a service gate by Homeland Security where it is parked on the tarmac next to an unmarked corporate jet. A lift is waiting to move Michael up to the door with his Amigo. The luggage is loaded into the cargo hold by masked ground crew as the rest of the party boards the jet to be seated into executive lounge chairs in preparation for takeoff. With a refueling stop in Newark, the flight makes it to Freeport by mid afternoon. Here, they board an airport limo where they meet up with Jerry, where they make a one hour trip to a small fishing village in a remote part of the main island. A deep sea fishing boat, operated by Carlos Charters, is waiting to transport them to a private island resort that belongs to the travel agency. On board the 50 foot vessel, everyone is seated for the three hour trip to the resort island of Fantastic Tours. “Dinner will be waiting for everyone,” Carlos, the chubby boat captain tells everyone. His skinny mate, Micky, makes sure that everyone is familiar with the safety equipment on board before he cast off the lines holding the boat to the dock. “I hope that this is not Gilligans Island,” Mary whispers to Joe. “Well, at least his boat isn’t named ‘The Minnow’” answers Joe The sea is quite smooth as the boat clears the harbor and heads out to sea. As they clear the buoys marking the reef, they are out into the open sea as Carlos opens up the throttle of the two diesel engines to make the 75 mile trip to the private island. It is two hours later that the charter boat runs into a fog bank that seems to come out of nowhere. Their destination had been in sight but now it had vanished in the thickening haze. Carlos appears to be worried as he slows down the engines to idle, the fog now getting so thick that he can no longer see the bow from the bridge. “What’s going on?” asks Jerry. “I don’t know,” answers Carlos. “With the radar having lost a signal on your island and the compass spinning like crazy, we are now traveling blind. I have never seen such pea soup like this before. It’s weird out there.” Micky is now getting everyone into life vest as Carlos activates the automatic foghorn. “Not to worry,” he tells everyone. “It is just a precaution while we are traveling in such dense fog.” The fog continues to get worse as everyone goes inside to get away from it. Soon, it is getting pitch black outside even though it is only late afternoon according to the clock. Carlos has been on the radio trying to contact harbor control at Freeport, or anyone else to find out what is going on with the weather. There is no radio traffic at all on any of the marine channels, even the emergency channel has no radio traffic. All that is being received is a strange eerie static. Suddenly, both engines quit running as the lights go out. The automated foghorn stops working. Fumbling around in the dark, Micky finds an emergency lantern, which shorts out five seconds after he turns it on. Dr. Sanders takes out a cigarette lighter from his pocket, but, it won’t light or even set off a spark. Dr. Croft has gone to the head to look for the second emergency lantern. Everyone is soon in a panic when a strange glow starts to appears outside all around them followed by a high pitch hum that causes everyone to pass out.
  20. Audio description For walking with dinosaurs 2013 if anyone has disney+ Can you please send feedback for Walking with dinosaur 2013 to get audio description thank u
  21. This is a story of the game play when Ark Survival Evolved was released early June of 2015. It is an interesting comparison to the history of what the game was like in those early days compared to today. Enjoy. From the first days in June of 2015 when Single Player became available. These are the days of the low level creatures and what is currently considered as 0.25X settings for leveling, taming, gathering, and XP. Ark Survival Evolved. The game sure taxes the system. Am playing it as single player. Have a nice base against a cliff partially protected by a big rock. (Lave Cave entrance.) Good thing, three Dilos moved into the area while I was Dodo hunting for hide. One jumped me from behind while I was collecting hide and spit on me. Managed to kill it. Found the other two near my base just before dark and took them out with the spear. This is day 7 in the game. I am one hide short of making the spawn bed so if my character gets killed, he will return to where there are ready spare supplies. Should get that on the next hunting trip. Day 10. Haven't been killed yet in the game. Got the spawn bed made, gloves, and boots repaired. Also placed a box for wood at the campfire. They finally fixed the bug on freezing to death while sitting next to the campfire. The campfire uses about 25 wood and gives 20 charcoal during all night. Graphics are getting better as it optimizes. A green supply drop was nearby but my character can't access it yet. The one Periodontal is still hanging along the beach but is no threat. Those spitters you have to watch out for. Next level up I can get the mortise and pedestal and craft narcotics so I cam make use of the spoiled meat and preserve the narcoberries. There is an undocumented recipe for night vision called Shadow Steak. There is also one for 15 minutes of oxygen underwater, useful for reaching underwater caves and collecting oil, and one for rapid healing. Those are later in the game. Knocked out two dilos at range with the slingshot. That works very well even though it is a bit hard to gauge aiming. They could have been tamed but not ready to do so yet to make them guard dogs. When ready, I'll have a stock of raw meat and narcos. Broke a spear on a Dodo. Made up three spares. Had a female turtle hang around camp all night. Got a good stock of wood, thatch, fiber, and spare items in three chest. May look at setting another base further along the coast. Want the mortar and pestle and recipe for narcotics storage. Narcoberries and spoiled meat only keep for about a day. Day 11, Ran into a tough Dilo that wouldn't knock out with the slingshot. Got the mortar and pedestal to save the spoiled meat and narco berries to long storage narcs. A huge Brontosaurs is stomping around near the camp along the shoreline. Don't spawn anywhere near the North Shore. It is swarming with packs of dilos, rapiers, Carnos, Crocs, T-Rexes, sabertooths, and giant eagles that all want you for lunch. Day 12, level 11. Getting a good stock of hides. Also narcos and stims crafted from the berries so they don't spoil. Have made spark powder and can make gun powder. Also a flare gun. This turtle is stuck between a bush and a tree. Can't pick the bush and using an ax or pick on the tree risks hitting it. Since it will attract any predators near camp, I am leaving it alone for now. The Brontosaurus, Parasaurs and Triceratops are hanging around the cove. Upgraded the beach house with sides and a roof and a storage box for the fire there. Have actually collected 5 metals from the shoreline rock. Ark Day 14. Built a second camp behind rocks along the corner of the inlet. Trikes and a Brontosaurs have been hanging around there keeping the dilos at bay. a supply cashes dropped on the hill close by. It was a good one with two fire pits, two expensive to craft sleeping bags, and an assortment of berries. Left half in the crate at camp 2 and raced for the main camp as darkness approached. No Dodo birds around. Attacked by a pack of 3 dilos and took them out but got spit on by number 3 during the fight. Could only find the one after I was able to see but must of harvested the other two in the fight that broke all three spears as I used the hatchet and had 12 raw meat. Leveled up and got the cooking pot set up. Good thing I had a lot of stone stored in the main camp as it took 65 of them to set up. Have a water sack built. The turtle is still around. Surprisingly, the Dildos didn't attack it. (The same three spawned in that area 6 game days ago.) Plan to complete camp 2 and hang out there for a couple of game days harvesting resources. Ark day 15. Configured my emergency resupply box in case of death and respawn. The box contains basic clothes, weapons, and tools. Crafted more stims and narcs from the berries. More screenshots of the campsite and the trapped turtle. The male is fishing in the nearby sea. I have pic of the little seaside cottage which also has a small stash of goodies. Tomorrow, looking at finishing the bay camp, do some hunting, and possibly taming the turtles to aid in carrying stuff. Ark day 16. Bushwacked by a new spawned dilo while gathering wood in the morning. managed to hack it to death with the ax. The morning hunt got 7 dodos and a trapped turtle. Not the one at camp. Took 8 stones to knock out and a lot of hacking to kill a level 2 turtle. Not worth much for meat or hide. The dodos can yield up to 7 hides and 4 meat. That needs to be fixed in the game. I now have a trike trapped in a tree near camp. That will be an easy tame when I level up enough to tame and saddle it. They are massive berry and wood harvesters. More game screen shots. Ark day 17. Headed North along the beach dodo hunting. Could not save the trapped turtle so harvest it for food, hide, and keretan. Did the same with a second one that took a lot more to kill. Avoided some dilos further on. No Phiomias yet. A dodo spawned near camp during the night. Will have to watch for Dilos doing the same. The big rock is good for climbing to the top to use to scout for trouble. Can slingshot from there as well. Two more level ups before I can craft a bow and stone arrows. Early morning surveying the terrain below where the Dodo moved in. Ark day 18. Wiped out three high level dilos. They are tough but getting the experience how to take them out with a spear or slingshot and sidestep the spit. Guess what is out the front door of the camp all night? Actually the Brontosaurus stomping around the beach by the stuck trike. Ark Day 20. Set a small base on the cliff overlooking my base camp. Spotted a T-Rex across the inlet eating a turtle, stay far away from there. The Level 14 Trike is loose thanks to the Bronto that knocked down the tree. A level 11 spitter got into the area during the night and had to dispatch that before before closing down the game for the day. Those take several close hits with the spears to kill plus having to duck their blinding spit. Wreaked my boots that had to be repaired. Getting a good stock of items including hides and some rare metal for later crafting. #3 shot shows the T-rex. The last shot the spitter near the trike. Ark day 22. Have the bow and arrow. Moving the camp to inside the cave before my visitor steps on it. The level 14 trike is stuck in another tree again. Crafted a bow and a spare. Have 22 arrows for each. Will be farming a lot more flint for arrows. I do have 40 pieces stored in lockers as they are also used to make spark powder needed for stimulants and gun powder. Ark day 23. harvested a pile of wood, flint, and other items in preparation to building the cave base. Will be placing a wood wall with door in the back and one in the entrance. Once done, I will move the base. Crafted 45 more arrows for the spare bow in the go box. That and the spawn bed will remain in the original base camp. The rest will be packed up and moved once the walls are built. No hunting done this day. Will be leveled up very shortly so I can get the wood construction items. Pica, the nightly visitor and the latest update to Ark. Ark Day 23. Successful hunting trip although it took 16 arrows to the head to kill a turtle and only recovered two. harvested 7 dumb dodos up on the hill over the camp. No predators up there although there was a spitter down by Camp 3. They need to fix this bug. There is no way my character should be freezing to death next to the fire with a lit torch. Ark day 24. Spent the day moving supplies and harvesting wood. The purple wing Pteranodon flew into the cave and was stuck in there for a while. Spent the night in the cave crafting foundations and walls from wood with the spare stuff. It gets cold in the cave entry area at night. Both a fire and standing torch wards off the cold as I can craft items in safety. Stocked a spare bow and 45 stone arrows from the extra flints. Also extra crates for when I make the major move of the mortar and pestle and cooking pot. Unfortunately, they have to be destroyed and rebuilt with a loss of materials. At least, the Bronto can't step on anything in there and most other dinos are too big for the entrance. Soon as I can figure where, I will build the two walls. Will keep the spawn bed and go box where they are in the current base camp to avoid the cave bug when first loading the game. The first and most important rule in this game at all times, watch your six. Too easy to get busy and have a spitter or worse ambush your player from behind. hardest items to find in this game, narcoberries. Since they spoil so quickly, it becomes important to have some spoiled meat, which can also parish over time, on hand to craft the more potent narcotics, along with tranc arrows, for use in future taming. Ark day 25. Wiped out three trapped turtles. They are not safe to spear even trapped. Took a ton of arrows on the level 12 got most back. Got enough hide to craft a Parasaur saddle. There are two hanging around my campsite now. Will need tranc arrows as they will run away with the first stone I hit them with to knock them out. Started placing the wall in the back of the cave. Need a bunch more wood to finish. Wall goes three fenced high. Standing torch gives warmth, light, and uses little wood. Picture north of camp up on the hill. The Parasaur by camp. The current update on Ark. Ark day 26. A pack of spitters near camp in the evening. Took out two with arrows but got ambushed by two more of his friends. Fighting blind with the spear and took quite a beating. Almost was killed. Harvested three couldn't find the fourth. There is a fifth near the cove camp. May get or try to tame that one if I can get some raw meat first. Four Parasaurs nearby as taming prospect. Have to get tranc arrows to catch them as they will run away. Stupid turtle took 26 stone arrows and several jabs with the spear to kill. It was a higher level that gave up a lot of meat, hide, and keritan. Also 7 Dodos up on the ridge. That jungle nearby looks very unsafe. Also a big fight across the inlet. Finished the wall for the cave. Will start moving everything into the cave base except for the go box and spawn bed. Ark day 27. Killed that other spitter with three arrows. Also 4 Dodos for meat and hide. Two more turtles stuck in trees at the cove but left them as they were high level and mate boosted. Found I can slide down the cliff from high camp safely. All that is up there are rocks for flint and dodos to hunt. Most of the wood, fiber and berries along the coast. Got enough narcoberries for six narcos. Had enough spoiled meat for crafting. Placed a door at the cave wall and a second torch at the entrance. Nearly froze to death standing close by the fire and standing torch while holding on to a torch. they need to fix that bug. Two more level ups and I can craft narc arrows to knock out a Parasaur to tame. Still need to move the camp to the cave before it gets stepped on. Ark day 28. Concentrated on gathering berries, wood, fiber. Need much more thatch. Ready to move to the cave. The laptop got the character to spawn in Zone 1 East by deleting the player file. The graphic card crashed after 30 minutes. I know it didn't save the current stats. Card crashes upon entering the game so may need an update or may need to delete the character file. Definitely need to craft the ax before the spear as the pick is a poor harvester of much needed wood in the early game state. I will place home camp in the rocks where I have camp two in the current game. It is well sheltered by the rocks and the seaside cliff from the predators. Ark day 29. Joe Six Pack on the laptop now works thanks to an update. He is in the seaside cliff camp as is shown in the pix below. Gathering continues with 5 more narcs and tons of Azulberries and Mejuberries in storage ready for taming. Continuing to move supplies into the cave base. Will place a spawn bed inside the entrance and eventually destroy the cliff side base for salvage. Note third person view on cliff side and cave base. Standing torches are very wood efficient using a couple of pieces compared to the 25 the firepit consumes. Firepit usually used for cooking and extra warmth. Ark day 30. Another level up. Enough narco berries collected for five more narcs. No spitters in the area. Lots of trikes, turtles and peradons. sharks in the ocean. Grabbed a supply drop early AM day 31. Good thing no spitters as I ran to it before it despawned. Three sleeping bags, a fire pit, some spark powder, and a bunch of assorted berries. Sorting out the crates. One for spare weapons, one for crafted items, one for berries, one for seeds, one for sleeping bags and saddles, the rest for wood and fiber. Ark day 31. Nearly ready to level up to get the tranc arrows. Gathering more resources from the bay camp area and stocking the high cliff camp. I can safely slide down the steep cliff to reach the cave camp. The night time is a good time to organize the storage containers in the cave camp while staying close to the fire, cook any meat, craft extra items, fix tools and clothing, and craft narcs and spark powder. By the time all of that gets done, daylight is coming around. Turned off the volumetric clouds and gained some frame rates to make the game more playable. Ark day 32. Spotted a green drop as I was heading in the opposite direction to collect rare narco berries. It contained two parachutes, somewhat useless for now, a bow, 46 stone arrows and 16 valuable tranc arrows. Unfortunately, the Parasaur I had observed days ago was not in the area although I could take on a higher level male. Stocked the top cliff side with the spare bow and arrows along with clothes and other weapons. Six dumb dodos ended up as meat and hide. So far, the spitters are nowhere to be found. Now have Level 20 and the engram for the tranc arrow and a rapier saddle. Also the big storage bin. May want to go looking for one if I can spot one alone and have a bunch of raw meat on hand. It tends to spoil quickly. Have 14 narcs on me and 52 more in storage. The stores will be needed since once you use a narc arrow, it recovers as a stone arrow. Found out a Trike saddle is available. I know where a low level Trike is stuck in trees. While much slower then the Parasaur, these tanks can carry a lot and defend themselves against predators. Will definitely go after one and be prepared for a long tame. I have the narcs and mejoberries in stock. Ark Day 34. Say hello to Mike the Trike. He was a bit unexpected when he attacked as I was knocking out a level three stuck in the tree. He also became stuck as I took him down with narc arrows. The game has implemented dino damage as Mike took quite a beating, his health was way down, along with I had to run back for Mejoberries and trancs, the taming process took over an hour. Was there all night and into noon the next day. Had enough materials back in the cave base to craft a saddle for him. He won't fit in the cave. Had a bit of a problem getting him unstuck as I couldn't get on him until I crouched and crawled under him. Anyhow, there is the first pet. A bit slow, but built like a tank that can carry a lot of weight. Additionally, another drop took place nearby. Collected a bunch of stuff but stashed it in the box at the cliff camp. Use its spare firepit and torch for light and warmth overnight. No predators but a pesky parasaur. About 20 minutes of riding Mike the Trike to test out his harvesting abilities. This is far faster yielding four times the berries per swipe then by hand. Got enough narcoberries for 7 narcs in short order, also lots of berries. Will use him on the next session to gather more berries, knock out the Level 3 trike stuck near where Mike was, tame it for a pack animal, recover the drop supplies stored in camp 2, grab a ton of wood and thatch, and finish the cave move. Mike has leveled up while gathering berries. Having pets in this game is a big plus. They can be very useful. Ark day 35 and 36. Meet Terry the Trike. Even though Level 3, it was still a long tame but much cleaner as the tranc arrows did less damage. Took three of them. While the taming took place, Mike was kept busy harvesting berries and wood. Brought the stuff back from camp 2 on Terry and transferred the saddle to him since Mike was packing lots of stuff. Also let me level up Terry. A level 14 female kept hanging around during the taming process. That may take too long to knock out and tame. A Spitter showed up near camp by the caves where the Trikes were parked. Soon as I hit it with an arrow, Terry ran over and speared it with his horns with Mike on his tail. They just proved their value as protectors as well as armored mounts. Tribolites have now appeared. They scurry along the beach in and near the water. Ugly things yield chitlin and oil. Ark Day 37 A Game Bug Disaster. Make note, Don't exit the game while in the cave. There was no floor so not only was Halsey killed by falling into the center of the lava, everything on him was lost. Respawn to the bed at the original camp, gather the bug out supplies, went to the cave, and destroyed the spawn bed in there. Got the second bow and crafted 15 narc arrows from supplies, grabbed the already crafted Parasaur saddle and spare torch, hopped on Terry and headed to the location of the trapped Parasaur. That one was a Level 18 and took 5 tranc arrows to knock out. A key to controlling damage was to retrieve the arrows before accessing inventory and placing Narco Berries and Mejoberries also Azulberries. A 3/4 hour tame due to the high level in which he bonus 2 more levels by the time the tame was complete at 2:00 AM game time. Rode Perry the Parasaur back with Terry and Mike following. He is not anywhere the berry picker that the Trikes are. An interesting day due to the bad spawn game bug. At least the spare items worked out. Will need to restock the bug out box. Ark Day 38. Spent the day gathering up materials to replace those lost in yesterday's game bug. Used Perry for gathering flint, stone, fiber, Dodos, and Tribolites. Took Terry out for a narco berry run. The pesky Bronto is constantly in the way near camp. And verified that because my inside place was over the cave data load point, that was the cause of the missing floor that caused my character to fall through the world to his incineration below. Ark Day 39 and 40. Took Perry out to the point camp to retrieve spare clothing. Took out a Spitter hanging around there which gave me a lot of hide. A level 4 female Trike hanging around camp. Put the boys on Passive and tranc arrow the female. Took 5 arrows. Even though the tame was clean with low damage and well above 50% effectiveness, it took over an hour and a half. Fortunately, much of the vegetation had regenerated around the camp, so Terry was kept busy harvesting Narco and Mejo berries. So, say hello to Tina the Trike who has Mate Boosted both the males. Had enough hide to craft a second Trike saddle which is on Tina to get her leveled up. It is now late evening on the 40th so I quit in the hut. Will head for the cave next session, bring the tribe and park them there, light the standing torches, and unload all the un needed berries for storage. Ark day 41. Went out on a wood gathering expedition but not much wood gathered. Perry not much good at attacking things so place him under the trikes protection. Git Tina stuck in a tree and had to chop it down without hitting her. Spotted a white drop and raced to it. Items were worthless so left them. Wiped out three spitters with Tina - one head butt was all it took to kill them. Got their hide. A tribolite, hard to kill, gave me some silica pearls. As I was at the point, harvested a bunch of wood as evening was approaching. Then, notice that Terry was missing. As he has one of the Trike saddles on him the priority was to find where he went. Traced my path back, no Terry. Took out some more spitters and five Dodos. Back to the beach to head for camp, Terry shows up glad to see us. Apparently he tried to shortcut when I was chasing after the drop and slid down the cliff by camp. Unloaded what I gathered, stocked up the torches and fire, sorted out the stash, crafted a bunch more arrows and a bow for the cave spares, and back to camp one to end the one hour day. All four pets leveled up at least once, some twice on day 41. Will try to get to the jungle edge for more wood next day. Ark day 42 and 43. Meet Tricia the Trike. I now have my four trikes, 2 males and 2 females. Note, don't try to remove trees they are trapped in during tame, it causes damage. Anyhow, tame took the usual hour. Only took Terry and left the other pets at the base. No spitters in the area as I wiped them out the day before. Gathered wood and other items during the tame. Also Terry gathered well over 100 narcoberries during the tame, so a good stock to convert all spoiled meat into narcs for arrows. Will build a refining forge as soon as I have the hides. It will work with the Smitty for crafting metal tools. Have to reach level 25 to get it. Will work on getting metal when possible. The Lava cave doesn't have any in the safer regions. Some complain about too long a night cycle. I use the night cycle for crafting and repairing in the cave. I park the tribe outside with two lit torches. Lighted torches are usually enough for heat inside and use very little wood. Ark day 43. Taking the tribe out can be a bit of a pain as they get stuck into each other so I can't pick one to ride. Solution, just take a mated pair along and use one as a pack animal. Tricia is getting leveled up since I ride her and use her for berry harvesting. Gathered stone and wood for the smelting furnace. Just need 17 more hides. Much of the vegetation has regenerated around the camp area. Have tons of berries including over 140 narco berries. Converting them to narcs as quickly as there is spoiled meat to process them. Put a large storage chest outside the cave by the night torch for quick unloading of the trike during forging. Ark day 44 Took Mike and Tina out for a spin. Gathered flint and rare metal as well as kill more Dodos. No spitters to be found. Built the refining forge and placed it on the wood foundation in the cave base. Have 40 metals. Put 20 in the forge which gave 10 metal ingots. Saving those when I can get the Smitty and craft a metal ax and pick. More hunting tomorrow to get more hide as I am all out. More views above the cave base on the cliff. Ark day 45. No metal in the rocks today. Traveled up the south inlet and wiped out a pack of three spitters with the trike. Nike took out one while Tina got the other two. Noticed that they don't attack Trikes but they will attack a Parasaur. Also a level 20 turtle which doesn't yield much of anything. Ended the trip due to the presence of a T-Rex chewing up on three brontos across the inlet. You can see the carnage in the pic. My pest is near there as well. Gathered berries on the way back. Took Perry for a quick spin to check on a blue drop. Couldn't access it as it was a Level 25 and I am still at Level 23. Spoiled 10 meat by splitting them to single stack so I could craft 10 narcs. Stupid freezing cold wave hit in morning but stayed warm enough with the fire, torch, and standing torch set in a triangle. Had to wait for the raw meat to spoil anyways. Ark day 46. Conducted an expedition North. Murdered a turtle by exploiting hitting from both sides with trikes. Worked much better as Mike finished the job. Wiped out two spitters. Found a drowned pteranodon and harvested it for hide. Lots of Trikes roaming to the North along the beach. The trikes are good at getting resources from the driftwood and dead palms. 2 metals and some silica pearls. May try crafting dyes but would have to place the cooking pot by the water or craft several waterskins to fill just before heading to the cave for the night. I have the recipes for doing so along with lots of charcoal. Ideally taking two trikes out works best as taking all four there are issues with them getting stuck in each other or in trees. Ark day 47. Kept busy using the Trikes to harvest those ugly tribolites for chitin and oil sometimes meat. Got a bunch of them as I patrolled the beach to the point, then inland around the loop. One metal out of the rocks high up. No spitters around. Have enough meat on hand to try taming one as a guard dog should the opportunity present itself. The commands have updated again along with the settings including those for dino damage. Decided turtles are not worth killing for resources. They are hard to kill and drop little meat, hide and chitin. Ark day 50. Trikes are leveling up nicely. Switched the saddles back to the boys to get them leveled up more. Cleaned out most of the useless turtles in the area. Have got down the stragity to get both trikes working together to quickly kill higher level turtles. They are yielding much better resources with the updates. Frame rates better as well. Should be level 25 soon and able to craft metal tools. Expanding my range as I forge for rare items such as metal in rocks. Started the game from where I left off on the laptop. It loaded in as fast with this latest update. Ark day 52. Tina laid an egg. Really! Will have to watch that it doesn't get stepped on. Level 25. Note inventory now has a metal pickax and a crossbow. Will test both out next trip. Need more raw metal to get the ax and pike. The Pike will be first priority. Ark day 54. Tested out the metal tools. They are more efficient but will wear out slowly. Some refined metal is vanishing on me. I'll have to keep it out of the Smithy since it is so hard to get. Did make the pike. It is efficient at killing Tribolites. The Crossbow hits harder and faster then the standard bow. Placed my sign at the cave. Ark day 56. Saw one of the new flying reptiles on the beach in the water. Tricia went nuts when Mike speared it. It went down in the water where I couldn't find it. Refined metal is vanishing in the Smithy. Could have crafted an ax with what has vanished. So, no leaving that hard to come by resource in there. Set up a East zone 2 base by a cliff with thatch hut, campfire, box, and standing torch. No supplies other then wood for the fire. Harvested large amounts of wood to build a Dodo pen for egg collection. So far, just crafting the foundations and fence. Lousy weather on day 56. Got so foggy that it was hard to see. There are three turtles and two trikes stuck in trees near Zone 2 camp. Have a rapter saddle. There should be some in the jungle above the cliff if the You Tube videos are correct. Only one spitter and lots of tribolites along the shore. The area has turtles, parasaurs and trikes. Bad weather shots and a closeup of what has to be the dumbest creature that ever existed. Ark day 58. More prep to build a dodo pen. Have enough foundations and walls crafted for a pen. Was riding Perry and spotted a spitter attacking a parasaur on the inlet beach. Took him back to the base and got the trike pair. It was long gone so wiped out the spitter with Terry. (It didn't stand a chance against an angry trike.) BTY, there are two trike eggs in storage. Have the cooking pot at the beachfront hut. No Narcoberries for black or some colors. Will grab the charcoal, wood, berries, and gunpowder to make some dyes. Ark day 60. built the 5x5 Dodo pen two layers high from thatch. Also, crafted a bunch of various colors of dye from the beach camp. When I do more, I will take a lot more charcoal down to that cooking pot. Crafting dyes goes much faster when it is raining as you don't have to run down to the beach for more water. Raided a drop for spare items. It dropped a flare gun, hatchet, spear, slingshot, and misc stuff. Tomorrow, I will clear a path to where the other drop occurs in the edge of the jungle. Will watch out for a rapiter. Ark day 62. New critters added to the game. Pushing further up the coastline. The T-Rexes are still battling the Brontos. One of them was killed but all three Brontos also died. Looks like rapters and carnos there as well. An area to avoid. More dyes crafted. Lots of narcs in storage. Enough metal now to craft an ax. two more eggs collected. Another foggy day, another deep freeze at dark that interfered with inventorying items. Perry and Mike leveled up twice. All 5 pets well stocked with their favorite food. Should go tame a female parasaur now that I have wiped out all the spitters harassing them on the point. Ark day 66. Say hello to Patricia the Parasaur. Tame went well. Spent the rest of that day with the Trikes gathering stuff. Next day was spent greatly enlarging the Dodo pen into a large corral for the pets. Had more then enough resources gathered to build Thatch walls. Installed a Dino gate and brought them all inside. Repaired the pike and crafted a hatchet from metal. Ark day 68. Things went well using the metal ax and taking Patricia out for a ride. Later, took the two trikes to set up a base by the river. Decided to place it on the path down. No sooner then got it done and I had to leave the area in a hurry. Looks like I will be forced to go T-Rex hunting to remove what is going to be a serious threat to the pets at cave camp. If I am lucky, I can kite it from the cliff side with narc arrows and then pike it to death. Ark day 71. Day 68 went fine. The T-rex moved back up the river so went gathering along the point. Unfortunately Tricia aggravated the pesky bronto and ended up being killed when he fell on her. RIP Tricia. Anyhow, found a trapped level 26 female trike by the beach on the point. Being late evening, went back to base camp, grabbed a stock of narcs and mejoberries and headed back with a lonely Mike the Trike. Took 7 narc arrows to knock her out. BTW, a level 26 trike is a long tame, nearly 2 hours. Used tons of narcoberries and mejos which I kept busy on Mike harvesting close by. Level up 4 bonus levels on the tame. So, say hello to Trixie the Trike. Ark day 72. Extended the wall to three high. low on fiber so went gathering that. Crafted a bunch more dyes during the night on the beach this time with gunpowder in the pot. That gives a different mix of colors. Took a pair of Trikes with saddles for the excursion and gathering. Pic inside the corral. Time to take the Parasaurs out for a stroll tomorrow when I hunt Trilobites along the beach. There are several wild Parasaurs roaming around the main camp area. So long as they are around, it means that there are no predators nearby. Ark day 75. Guess what dropped in off the cliff on the morning of day 75? This is why I worry should a T-Rex prowl around up there. Given it is a level 3 female, it is a candidate for a tame but could take 2+ hours according to the Wiki. 200 hide for a saddle. Ark day 77. Set the game to do tame on 2X. Went after the Stego. Took a lot of backwards running and 7 tranc arrows to the head. She wreaked my seaside base wiping out the fire pit, cooking pot, and two torches. The Wiki is wrong on the Rockarrot seed. She prefers Mejoberries of which I had access to enough. Tame went well as I rebuilt the damaged items and had the cooking pot replaced by evening. Brought out Trixie to keep guard and made dyes during the night. Had just enough hide to craft the saddle for Stacy the Stego. Good thing I made the dino pen big enough. And, Yes, she is a much better harvester then the trikes but v e r y slow. That tail nearly killed a pesky wild parasaur in two wacks before it ran off. Ark day 79. Took Perry out for a metal run. Got 10+ Replaced a metal pick ax. Took Stacy out for a huge berry run. Her tail is wicked hitting two snoopy parasaurs close by. Will have to be extra careful around Trikes and Brontos until her health and stamina is built up. Crafted a ton of dye with the berry harvest. A drop of mostly useless items. Placed them in the crate at the beach. Ark day 81. Took the trikes on a trip. another supply drop of low level stuff but all useful. Spotted a later drop up river and went down the path to where the T-Rex had been. It was long gone but the pig creatures were down there. Drop was in the water which was full of Mega Parana. Not good, abandoned that attempt as it was too far out and too many hungry paranas to mess with. Later run on foot with lots of Tribolites and dodos to harvest. More eggs in the storage box. Have a preserving bin working to make meat jerky. May expand the pen further. Am stocking up on construction panels. Ark day 83. Built a second preserving bin to keep the eggs, meat, rare berries, and perishable seeds. The sparkpowder needed to run the bins is easy to come by as well as uses a unit an hour per bin. Packed up a bunch of prefabricated materials for a foundation, dino gate, fence, and standard doorway and transported it on Trikes to the river camp. Place it in storage until I can place the barrier to keep the carnos off the ridge above my main base. That is how Stacy found her way to my base a couple of days ago from across the river. I don't need to have to deal with a T-Rex that way but have a plan where I can kite it while using the cave for protection. Tranc arrows should easily knock it out so I can safely hack it to death and not risk fighting with the Trikes. Have a stock of 50 spare tranc arrows stashed in the cave with a spare bow. Anyhow, the river ramp base was very quiet. Just a stuck ankylosaur and some of those pig creatures near by. Completed the T-Rex wall. Had enough materials there to complete a longer then expected wall. So, the cliffside is now secure from the predator infested river. A wood dino gate will allow passage to the valley below to gather resources there. Ark day 85. Wall was completed on the pass along the river. Took the two trikes to harvest wood and fiber. Saw another stego along the shore way North. Later, took Tricia out to gather more fiber and hide. Soon as I get to Level 35, it is time to tame a bird. There are a couple close to the base. Will soon have enough hide for a saddle for one. Then, I can fly to the volcano to get valuable metal and crystal. As they eat meat, I have been stocking it up in the preserving bin. Will build a feeding trough so I don't have to keep such a large stock of berries on all the pets when they are in the corral. Area has been very quiet. No spitters for days. Ark day 87. The wall is now four levels high along with the corral. Now Level 30 but need more hide to craft a saddle for a bird. Need to wait until one lands close to the base and narc arrow it before it flies off. They have in the past. Something scrambled the pets in the corral when I was gone with Terry. The girl trikes were all huddled together. Built a shelter in the corral so I can park my character there when I exit the game. Perry is peaking in the door. A view of the 8x16 corral from the cliff. There is a wild trike roaming nearby. Another female Stego is north on the ridge. Still no spitters showing up. The T-Rex hasn't been around on the river either. Built a feeding trough and placed it in the corral. The Preserving Bin is doing a good job of keeping highly perishable meat and narco berries. Ark day 89. Something rearranged the pets in the pen again while I was gone. A parasaur attacked me instead of running away. How is that possible? She left an egg near my base camp. Trixie made short work of her after I speared her. Ready to tame a bird as soon as one is close to camp. Could have got one but was too far from camp to grab the meat stock. Visit the river via the gateway. All fairly normal there. Pics of the wall I built to keep any T-rexes from the cliff. So far, none in the area. Ark day 92. Say hello to Tommy the Pteranodon. Took a couple of days to find one that landed close by. Turned out it was the level 2 male I saw days before. Only one narc arrow to knock out. Even with 2X it was almost an hour to tame. They don't carry much weight so wasn't sure I would be able to fly one. Got a saddle on it and took it for a spin. So long as you don't fly fast, the stamina holds up well. As their landing is skittish and they are known for not always staying at accessible ground level, I will leave the metal tools except for the pickax at the base. Too easy to get stranded somewhere should he spook and take off. Anyhow, some good exploring coming up tomorrow. And, three spitters showed up on the point, so good thing I didn't take Perry or Patricia to look for birds. Only had to contend with a pesky parasaur that I punched in the side to get him to take off. Ark day 95. Did an areal survey for a fellow survivor to locate tribolites. There were none to be found in his area but lots of spitters. If you land the Tommy properly, he doesn't run off before stopping. Found one of the pig creatures on the beach during a wood run, lots of meat and hide on them. Doubled the size of the dino pen so there is a lot more room with a gate on both ends. This gives Tommy a good landing zone near the center away from anything that may get close to the outer wall. Will start building an irrigation pipeline from the sea to the dino pen. Then, it won't be necessary to camp on the beach to craft dyes. Some good items from a drop as well. Spare tools and a bed. Weather on day 95 was just lousy. Cold, rain and fog. Ark day 98. Spitters are showing up on the point. Stacy's tail is nasty on them. A Carno is patrolling the north end by the camp there. It has taken out several herbivores on that end. Looks like it is time to take a trike pair saddled up and go get rid of it before it comes to the camp. The irrigation system is in. Need to get the plots in place and plant some rare seeds. The compost is ready. Update on day 98. The Carno threat is over. On the laptop, I took my two strongest Trikes, saddled both, and went hunting. Rode Trixie with Mike following. When I got close enough to the Carno, he got interested and ran in to attack. Just before he could bite, he got a face full of horns followed by a second and Mike's horns as well. It was over in seconds. I don't think that either trike suffered any injury in the attack. The carno dropped two prime meat which unfortunately spoiled before I could get it into the preserving bin. Will continue from there this evening. May explore building the raft which is now available for the game. Ark day 100. The carno threat is over. The trike pair head butt it out of existence. Took the other two out for a wood and metal gathering spin. Mostly Dodos killed. The wall is doing its job as it repels a pesky Bronto. Took Tommy for a recon of the south island. Landed on the player's area. No tribolites to be found. Spitters further South. The island seems to contain mostly parasaurs, trikes, stegos, and phemomas. Didn't see any predators. Stacy sent two more spitters flying. Have built the raft. It weights 75 pounds in the inventory. I will place supplies on it before sailing to the island to fully explore it. May be able to take Perry on the raft with me. The raft is still experimental, so don't know if the bugs are all out. At least, the Megadalons no longer attack it. Ark day 102. All supplies for the raft have been transferred to the point base for assembly. Will do that next session and sail to the island to set up a base there. I can use the spawn beds to transfer between bases but not any stuff. Check out the new outfits on Mike and Perry. Ark day 104. Built the raft, loaded it with supplies and set sail for South Island. Parked in the cove and built a base with a spawn bed and go box supplies. The island is peaceful with ankylsaurs, parasaurs, stegosaurs, those pig things, and some brontos. No carnivores. Now, North island, the one with the cave, is a nightmare of T-Rexes, eagles, carnos, and spinos. Speaking of, the T-rex is back across the point tearing up on the herbivores there. Did a complete fly around of the island since it is safe to land Terry there most anyplace. Will go spitter hunting tomorrow for their hide. They are back on the point. Current stats of my player and the game. Ark day 107. Crop plots in and planted. White drop gave a complete thatch hut. After nearly getting killed at the blue drop in the mega pharnia infested waters, it only had a useless crafting blueprint for a water bottle. The thatch hut was loaded onto the raft. painted the thatch doors on the dino pen pink so I can see them. Why pink? I just have a lot of that color in the paint locker. Check the coloration on this wild stego. Ark to day 110. Tried to tame a parasaur on the island but they kept running into the water. So, went back and brought Perry across on the raft. He so unbalanced the raft that it was difficult to steer. During the exploration, Jackpot, metal rocks! Got 90 pounds of Metal Found a parasaur stuck in the trees so took Perry back to the dino pen. Crafted the sickle, a second crossbow, and repaired the metal pike. Went back without Perry the next morning. Knocked out the stuck parasaur with two tranc arrows as it was a level 2. Tame was quick. After working to get Island Perry unstuck from two trees, it was off to explore the island and its high ridges. Jackpot, metal rocks! Harvested over 200 pounds of valuable metal rocks in two trips as Island Perry can't carry a lot. Placed it all on the raft along with a harvest of wood. Let Island Perry loose to wander as he can't go far anyways and there are no carnos on South Island. Very profitable couple of days. Will have to take the bird to the volcano for crystals, a very dangerous trip unless I can get some in the Lava Cave without getting killed down there. Ark day 112. Back to the island to get more metal. Will have to wait for it to respawn. Did get 46 more pounds. Island Perry came running when I called for him. Saddled him up to do the mining expedition and placed him back to wander when done. Refined all the metal to ingots and ended up using most of it to craft a long neck rifle and 14 rounds of ammo. Now have a ranged T-Rex killer should I need it. Will craft more ammo once I can harvest a bunch more metal. Night shot of the blue obelisk. Ark day 116. Lots of pictures. Tested out the rifle. Really need the scope for more accurate shooting. Took out some of the comfy becoming a pest to the North. They are hard to pike when they come at you in a group. Metal not respawning as quick as expected. Still got 46 more pounds so have lots of ammo for the rifle. Made a saddle for the Island Perry which is kept on the raft. Took the raft all the way to carno Island. A purple drop was there along with carnos. The big eagles are a threat if you get too close. Fortunately, the sharks leave the raft alone. Have now explored the entire eastern shoreline by raft. Last shot is the garden which is now yielding fruit. A good way to get rare narcoberries. Also fruit that can only be grown in the medium plots. Ark day 118 Two more blue drops, two worthless blueprints. 90 more pounds of metal. May have to risk the trip to the mountain with the bird to get crystal. I can now land him without dismounting. will have to see if he will fly without dismounting and getting back on. If so, it makes things easier to rest him for that long trip. I would travel light for that trip with only a metal pickax, pike, and narc bow. A drop in the ocean, no way at night does anyone go after that. Garden crops are doing very well. Ark day 121. Pesky Bronto has trashed the trees growing around my base. If it keeps this up, Ill have to go up on the cliff and shoot it. Not worth losing another Trike getting in a fight with it. The programmers have fixed the bird so it lands with my player mounted. This is good as I can restore his stamina and go back flying without dismounting and having him take off unexpectedly. That will make the trip to the crystal mountain a lot safer. Check out the blue drop in the water and why you don't go diving after it. Note the coral reefs along the shoreline. Lots of details in this huge terrain. There is a severe case of displaced ground under the alien ships with jagged cliffs and angled rock slabs. Ark day 124. Took the bird for an extended trip. Didn't go to the mountain. Got distracted by drops one of which had a complete thatch hut. Put it on the raft. Missed the island drop by seconds. Picked up the south drop which was worthless. Went hunting from the raft. High level spitters take more then one round from the slow reloading rifle. One got under the raft and was biting me through it. had to dive off and spear it. One trapped level 13 turtle took five shots to the head to kill it. They are quite tough regardless. The garden is yielding lots of Narcoberries and other crops. That will give me plenty for dyes. Also, the dino's favorite berries. Pesky Bronto, level 15 male, has moved to the point and continues to trash the palm trees there. 47 more metal from the island. Ark day 126 and 127. Made the scary trip to the NorthEast Mountain. Did three rest stops before flying to the summit. The near top slope was crawling with sabertooth after mastodons. Also a scorpion just beyond a rock where I landed. Picked two spots to land to get 37 pounds of crystals and got the heck out of there. Crafted the spyglass. The rifle scope took most of the crystal. Enough left for a water jug. Later after testing out the two new items, harvested 173 pounds of metal from Herbivore Island. Ark 128 129. Explored the southern coast by raft. Built a shelter on the rocky point. Cleaned out the dodos there. There are spitters and sarcos in that area. Another blueprint I don't need in a drop and a second that vanish just before I reached it. Got two spitters killed by a wild trike that was stuck in a tree. I didn't think that spitters would attack one unless attacked first. Hammerbutt saddle is available. Just need some 140 more hide to craft one. Then, I can tame one on the island that is stuck in a tree. Will be hunting next session. Having a gaming computer custom built so I can play this game at much better frame rate on higher settings. This one is really out of date. Pictures of South Zone 3 very interesting rock formations. Ark day 133. Will be putting my daily adventures on hold for the weekend as I will be down to the train show in Fostoria Ohio for the weekend. (Late September of 2015) Still 28 hide short for the Ankylosaur saddle in spite of two good hunting expeditions. One from the raft and one from the trikes. The scope makes for more accurate shooting of spitters from a distance. The tuna like creature is friendly. Three drops gathered. One a bunch of spare items for a base, the other two just duplicated blueprints. The Orcs are getting out of hand with the increasing numbers of those flying bats like meat eaters. One of those crocs creatures up the river. Ark day 135. Say hello to Annie the Anklyo. Nearly got killed by bats thank to lag in the game. Did wipe enough of them to get the hide I needed for the Ankylo saddle. Proceeded to the island. The stuck level5 ankylo required 5 narc arrows (10) using the crossbow. Tame went well but took most of a day cycle even on 2X. Unstuck Island Perry but knocked him out in the process. Found enough stim berries to wake him up. Brought Annie back on the raft. She doesn't carry a lot but that stone tail is wicked for breaking rocks, smashing trees, and harvesting berries. No metal rocks on the island this trip but four were extracted from the stone ones. Rafted Annie back to the dino pen. Ark day 138. A Time Quake struck the night of the day 136. A major update added the swamp and arctic biomes. What did happen is all of the vegetation and rock spawned back in making a mess of the base. All the pets in the dino pen survived. Island Perry, however, has vanished. That may have been my fault when I brought Annie across on the raft and didn't check if he had been on follow mode even though he wasn't nearby. That being the case, the sharks would have had him for lunch. Nothing lost as the saddle was on the raft. Over 200 pounds of metal ore from the island. Tomorrow, I will have to check out the swamp now North along the coast near what was the blue obelisk. Ark day 135. No, not a mistake, I time shifted the time quake on the laptop and transferred the save. This time, I put on some armor. Good thing, I had twice as many bats come after me. Able to wipe them out taking a lot less damage to get 54 hide from those nasty bastards. Built the saddle, only used 4 narc arrows on the Anklyo, tamed Annie, and used her to unstick Island Perry. That tail really gathers the metal from the metal rocks. Used Perry for hauling metal so long as he didn't get stuck in the trees. He is stuck again along the shoreline trees. Note, the time quake shifted the position of the obelisks. Blue is now green, green red, and red blue. Ark day 139. The bats are still out of control. This dense blon is going to be a problem since they will all attack at once. Killed a bunch more. dead bats everywhere giving up 68 more hide and 38 meat. Tamed the other Ankylo so I can use it to harvest metal rocks. Got over 200 pounds of metal ore. Used Tricia to transport it, rocks, thatch, three spare sleeping bags from the island camp, and fiber back from the raft to the main base. Added more garden plots to grow Mejoberries for the pets. Did a quick explore with Terry to check out the new swamp biome. Some interesting critters there including a huge mammal almost the size of the Brontos. And, lots of carnos, Sarcos, and other predators. Ark day 141. Got some more of the bats, a lot to go. Lost the pics bit did check out the swamp. It is a nasty place, hot, and full of critters that want you for lunch. Lots of Titanboas and Sarcos (Giant snakes and huge crocodiles.) The new herbivores live in it along with small flying bat like creatures. Gathered four eggs including one from the Anklyo. Went on a thatch harvesting expo with Mike that gathered a bunch of hides and wiped out two more spitters. Cleaning up the mess in the dino pen. There was almost 400 pounds of metal ore moved from the raft to the refining forge. May look into some flack armor for use in killing off the excess bats. Will need to build a fabricator for that as I now have the resources to build and run one. The new gaming computer is here. Currently transferring games to it from Steam. I7 processor with large cooling fins, 512G solid state C drive, 1T D drive, G Force 970 gaming card. Will be using a 27 inch 1080P monitor. Custom built so no crapware on this one. Windows 10 comes on a jump drive. Ark day 143. Restarted the game as I went after the bats, ended up mobbed by 30 of them and promptly killed while dead bats were flying in all directions. Otherwise, went on a crystal run with lots of screenshots on settings recommended for the 970 card. Outstanding details. A Stego managed to kill the carno on the beach. Built the Fabricator and mads some metal armor for use with the bats later. Paid the island a visit and got 120 more metal. Finished up with a wood and thatch gathering run that also got a bunch of tribolites and dodos. Will go after the bats on the inlet side later as they seem to be far more spread out. All screenshots are at 1920 x 1080, or 1080P on the flat screen TVs Ark day 144. Just a short session but quite profitable on the island drop. It contained a longneck rifle. So, now I have a spare for the go box with extra ammo. The land drop had another complete hutch and a saddle. inventory listed of the go box. You can also see the fabrication machine I now have for metal work that requires it. The game frame rates, in the mid 50s. Sure beats 9 to 15 a second on low settings. Ark day 146. Plan 1 is going into effect. Have two tamed spitters. Will look for two females. They knock out easily using a crossbow tranc arrow. One is enough and wait a few seconds. Not hunting with them at the moment. Found how to take out trapped turtles without taking any damage. The pig things are hard to kill without a rifle, they run quite fast into the jungle. Need to go on a thatch run to keep the garden fertilized. The blue drop was a worthless blueprint. Ark day 150. Passed up on several spitters until I found a female. Since she had a mate nearby, I had to tranc both one arrow each from the crossbow. The fun trying to load both of them on the raft. Had two stacks of meat and enough narcs so the tame was quick. Now to plan killing off the bats that continue to multiply and spread out. Saw a Bigfoot roaming the shore. Ark day 153. Typing this on the gaming computer. So far been unable to transfer my internet info to Firefox. Anyhow, an interesting if not unplanned events. Took the Dilo squad out hunting bats. Very nasty. We all got beat up but managed to take a bunch of them out. More to go later. Took them hunting parasaurs and other critters. They even wiped out a wild dilo. A green drop on the point gave me a complete set of hide clothing. Took out Stacy on a wood and thatch gathering to the point. Spotted a female pteridan and knoched her out with one regular bow tranc arrow. As I didn't plan on this I was short on raw meat. Left Stacy on guard, grabbed some stacks of stored meat, narcoberries, grabbed the ptra saddle and came back with Perry. Good thing I left Stacy on guard, three dilos showed up on the beach. Got the ptero sedated, then wiped out the three wild dilos with the rifle and crossbow tranc arrows. Took Perry back to the pen. It was a long tame as she was a level 21, gained six more. Flew her back to the pen and came back on foot for Stacy. Ark day 155. Took out more bats but they remain nasty. Three more wild dilos met their fate on the point. One arrow and my dilo pack tore them up. The raft update has made it go haywire as you cannot walk on it. Until that is fixed, metal mining and rapter hunting are on hold. Have located where the rapters live. They are up the river past where that other mess of bats and the sarco are. Found them while flying on the pteridacle. I can catch wild Dodos with her and drop them in my dino pen. Got one before it got dark. Won't be necessary to tame them. Ark day 158. Raft is back to normal. Did a recon flight and found several rapiters. When I landed to recharge the stamana, was attack by flying ants. Got the hell out of there before they could knock out the bird. Going to be a real pain taming a rapter under those conditions. Caught at least 6 more dodos and dropped them into camp before I had to go after spitters eating them. I can club them to knock them out for taming. They are roaming all over the place. Over 250 pounds of metal mined on the island. Ark day 160. Rafting hunting trip. Must have taken out ten spitters along the South Shore. You have to watch constantly given that they like to work in pairs and try to sideswipe you. Tranc arrow on a crossbow takes them down in seconds, usually one shot. They are getting more clever by hiding in bushes and behind downed logs. Later expedition to gather lots of thatch. The Trike is best at this as it can get the stuff from downed trees and driftwood. Graphics remain outstanding. Put the other sound system back on. Front and rear speakers are now functioning properly. The 5.1 Logitech just wasn't working and when it did, the forward speakers wouldn't function at all. Ark day 162. The experiment with the killallenemies cheat didn't work. Oh it did all right. It killed everything including all of my pets. Reloaded the game. Will deal with the bats later. Day 161 a hunting expedition with the dilo squad. they wipe out turtles very effectly. Tranced a female wild dilo. They didn't attack her so tamed and added her to the pack. Rest of the day with Annie breaking stone and harvesting thatch. Day 162 rafting hunting expedition. Though a wild parasaur was behind me when accessed the supply drop. Wrong! A high level Sarco ambushed me. Ended up using 10 tranc arrows and finally killed it with a spear in the water. Didn't take as much damage as I could have. Overall, the expedition yielded lots of meat and a ton of hide. Ark day 165. The bats are gone thanks to a specific cheat that only wiped them out and nothing else. Did a stone and hunting expedition. Picked up a drop of useful items. Got 200+ pounds of metal ore. (Note, the bats was a bug that allowed all cave bats to show up on the surface in large numbers.) Flew to the mountain peak for crystal. The trip was wicked. First, I was overheating, then it was freezing cold after flying through a cloud. Had to land a couple of times for crystal and dump rocks. On the last landing, I spotted an eagle, quick back to my bird and get on just as it attacked. Good thing I got on or I would have been stranded with few weapons as I travel light on crystal runs. Anyhow, the Pteradon can outfly the eagle. It kept chasing until I got out of its sight then had to land to recharge the stamana. Oh, it went from freezing cold to overheating instantly. Photos, closeup of Island Annie, one of those pig things, the flight to the mountain, and a scaro and shark fighting it out by the swamp. Ark day 167. Tamed one of those ugly pig things on Hervabore Island. I had the saddle from a drop. Used him to unstick Island Annie and Perry. They can harvast wood and thatch but are very slow at it. Not much good for anything except generating a lot of poop for the compost bin. Took Mike on a thatch run. Got a ton of it. Spotted 4 rapters across the cove. No way I would try to take on 4 unless I was on a cliff where they couldn't get me. Not even with a Trike. They move too fast. Got a dolphin saddle from a drop. Ark day 170. Took the dilo pack hunting. The bats, only three, are stuck in the ground so are no threat. Got one more female spitter. She was a pain to load on the raft for transport. Went to the island and took Island Annie metal mining. It was easier to move her with the raft to the back side for mining. 400+ pounds of metal ore. Ended up spending the night on the island. Found Island Perry up in the cove. So now there is Lassie to round up the pack. Check out the suicide Dodo in the photo. Ark day 173. Bats are back. Bye Bye with the cheat. Gather a ton of wood as I am upgrading the walls of the dino pen with wood. About a fourth done. Looking at expanding the pen 50% as well. Added Miss Piggy to the pets. Female pig critters seem to be rare on the island. Will take the dilo pack out hunting next trip. Ark day 176. Still working on the base upgrade. Am adding an addition to make the pen bigger. Sent out the hunting pack to murder turtles. They are like wolves when you turn them loose on one. Ark day 180. Collected tons of Dodo eggs in the pen. Went on wood harvesting to continue the pen expansion. Took the Dilo gang out hunting but not much in the area for them. Went to the Island to get a male Anklyo. Found a higher level one. Took 5 tranc arrows and lots of dodging to take him down as well as neatrly 2 days to tame. Pesky Bronto and Stegos finally got stuck and stayed out of the way. Harvasted wood for wall sections as well as thatch and berries. Brought the Anklyo back only to find all the wild Dodos were missing. No signs of anything had bothered any of the pets. They were where I left them. Will have to repopulate the pen with wild ones. Ark day 184, A pesky bronto is knocking down the trees on the point. Harvested as much wood there as possible. Now have the wood fence two high. Will go for thatch the other two. Restock the pen with 10 dodos. 9 egg layers and one male. Used the pteridon to grab them off the beach. During the rafting hunt, spotted numerous rapters attacking in packs the critters stuck in the trees. Getting nasty in those areas. The wild dilos are hiding in brush or stuck in trees. I hear them before I see them at times. They are easy to take down with the crossbow with tranc arrows. Spyglass shots of rapters attacking stuck dinos. Oh, the new Dodos are living dangerously. Ark day 188. Finish the addition to the base. Not sure if I want to tear the wall completely down to let the dodos run in there. Another pesky Bronto stomping around the base. Have tamed a turtle. It is like riding a tank, slow and noisy. They are good swimmers. A pair of the new huge mammals has shown up by the cove along with five Brontos by the fence. They are smashing down all of the trees and bushes. In all a good day in Ark. Will make Rapter Kibble before taming them to speed up that process. I have sufficient supplies for the recipe. Ark day 191. A pesky bronto is stuck at my base. If I try to kill it, it will smash the wall down. The dilo pack has a successful hunt killing several dinos and getting a ton of meat. Dropped two more Dodos in the pen. Tore the wall out and put up a fence, just released in the update. It will keep the Dodos in the one pen. More metal from the island as well as needed wood and stone. Made 10 Rapter kibble. Should make 10 more then go looking for a pair of them. The male Anklyo has a lot of color. Took him out rock bashing. Ark day 194 Say hello to Bruno the Bronto. He is now unstuck from the base. The stragity, get up on the rock at the seaside camp and hit his face with narc arrows. Took 14 of them to drop him. Lucked out as no damage was done to the base. Tame went twice the 2X speed as I fed him Rockarrots instead of Mejoberries. I had more then enough as he ate two stacks of them in nearly 2 game days. Now, I have him parked in front until I can reach level 55 to craft a saddle. The resources are in reserve to make one. Turned down two nearby drops as it was dark and those areas are not safe. Ark day 196. One more level up and Bruno will have a saddle. Used him for wood hauling. Saw one dilo trying to hide in the ferns. Took Mike the Trike out on a hunting expedition which was extremely successful. Saw my first Pachy down with the five Brontos. 10 more Rapter kibble crafted so ready to go find one or two to tame. Will be decked out in metal armor for that venture. Caught a wild petro raiding the feeding tray. More upgrade to the pen. The stats show how many eggs I have collected and placed in the preserving bin. They are only good for food or kibble. Ark day 199. Say hello to Ronda Raptor. She was a bitch to take down after casing the area to make sure there were no other raptors close by. They move so fast that it was hard to get in the other two shots. Had to watch a Carno nearby that moved away. The metal armor worked well. Took three tranc arrows to knock out but only two raptor kibble to tame in 5 minutes. Then, get out of that area because the delta area of the cove is extremely hostile. She is even nastier then the dilos when hunting and will harvest the meat directly. A male turtle was stuck by Bruno. However, he stepped on it when I knocked it out and killed it. Ark day 202. Bruno has a saddle. What a S-L-O-W huge battleship he is to ride. Getting off is no treat as you will take damage from the jump. Best to park him by a rock and do the Fred Flintstone down the tail. He is so big that he would barely fit in the expansion, so I park him outside, Got another turtle, wrong sex. I'll take him to the island and turn him loose there. That's because the Lady Gamera is a he. An awful lot of dilos showing up since I got the raptor. Another wild bird dropped in the pen during the night. Ark day 204. Trouble, there is a level 34 Alpha Raptor tearing up the critters on my side of the cove past the barrier. The HP on such a creature, which is not tamable, is outrageous. Eventually, I am going to have to kill it but I will have to snipe it from the cliff side and have a ton of rifle ammo on me. May need to craft the assault rifle with several clips of ammo. Good thing I scoped it or it would have been certain death has I attempted to tame it. (They are not tamable.) Ark day 205. All plans for the day canceled due to the Halloween update. The world of Ark was hit by another time quake. This time, it is Halloween themed. Colder days, longer nights, fall foliage, bats, the dreaded Dodorex, cemeteries, and pumpkin fields. quite a mess. Have the kibble ready for the female turtle tame. The alpha raptor is no longer in the area. Ark day 208. Tamed a female turtle with 5 kibble. All went well. Later when I attacked a trapped one on foot, Ronda tore into it, then ate it. The Dodorex warning appeared with the shadow sign on the blood moon, turned the base dark and spent the long night in the cave. Day 207 was spent as a wood harvesting trip on the island. Had to spend part of the night at the point camp side due to extreme cold. Do not like the long night as so much time is lost when you can't do anything. The island turtle has vanished. Not surprising since they are good swimmers, He may eventually show up on the main island or has become Megaladon food. Ark day 210. Stragicity for when the Dodorex warning appears is to place the base on blackout and take Ronda into the cave with me. So far, it has not spawned close by. Took the wood into the cave and crafted some foundations, walls, ceilings, and ladders. Need to harvest a ton more. Found Prince Gamera, the one I took to the island. He was out swimming just off the shore going after whatever he eats out there. Place scarecrows in the garden. The trike tends to get stuck in the tombstones so have to go around them. Ark day 213. So far have dodged the Dodorex. Night of day 210 spent on Herbivore Island. The Dodorex is landlocked so can't get there and won't spawn there. Dossier says it spawns around the yellow obslick. so guess which one is now yellow? the green one which is closest to my base. Dilo pack had a successful hunt. Gathered wood with the trike. Checked on the bronto herd. two are missing with a paracur and several smaller ones so something got them. I don't see the alpha raptor so unknown what happened to them. Don't want to tame the female bronto on the point until the Halloween week on Ark is over. Ark day 215. After a full day and night of Dodorex watch, peace again. Spent that day and night on Herbivore Island. Had Ronda with me. Harvested 200+lb metal ore, a bunch more wood, added some to the beach side shelter, checked on the island pets. Spotter a spider on the far point shore. The scorpions are now more active so am keeping stims on Ronda and my character as a antidote for stings. Have the cave fully stocked now as backup. Ark day 217. Spent the night on Herbivore Island without Ronda. Actually, I was looking for a male raptor to tame but didn't find any along the shore. Grabbed three supply drops. One with building materials, the other two worthless items. While exploring a southernmost inlet, I saw a Quizel, giant flying reptile, flying along the shoreline. That is rare as something must have spooked it from its mountain home. Ark day 219. A level 20 T-Rex tore up the inlet killing all the Brontos and Pacers. at least, it is moving back up the river. There were two raptor taming prospects on my side of the inlet. With the T-Rex close by it was not safe to attempt to take them down for taming. There was one in far inlet. It also got killed by a Trike. Both on my side of the inlet managed to get themselves killed fighting the trapped turtles as I did a flyby to check out the safety of the area. Spent the night of the 218 in the cave due to a Dodorex alert. Tomorrow should be the last of those alerts. Ark day 221. Took Ronda out hunting and gathering on this last day of the Dodorex. Called Island Gamera to shore to check him out and level him up. He must have killed a Megadalon Shark during his ocean forage and had hide boots and 4 megadalon teeth in his inventory. Ronda wiped out some more parasaurs and a spitter. The cove wildlife is recovering from the T-Rex attack of the other day. Still some giant scorpions to watch out for. About 700 pounds of wood along with pumpkins, scarecrows, and stolen grave markers placed in storage. I may attempt to take down and tame the T-Rex if it gets into the right location where I can safely hit it with narc arrows. two more level up and I can craft a saddle for one. Ark day 224 Say hello to Berniece the Bronto. No fun trying to tranc one out at ground level. They can move fast enough to be a major problem. There is a bug in the latest update that prevents me from access inventory on saddled pets, etc... so called the session short today. Good thing I kept the bronto saddle and rockaarts on me and not on the Trike. It was still a full hour+ tame. (Rockaarts tame at double the rate of berries.) Ark day 228. Found a workaround to the hold E for option bug affecting everything. There is a F to remote access inventory that works for now. Got the stuff off the Bronto and Trike. Took the dilo pack out hunting. They are nasty as ever with some of them chewing up the dead dinos. There is a level 10 Carno up the river that would be a good taming prospect. That would have to be planned in advance needing a fair amount of raw meat that would have to be transported by raft. Also took Ronda hunting. Snagged a wild parasaur on the raft and had to beach it for Ronda to tear up. Picture of the bronto pair, the hunting pack, and the snagged wild parasaur. Ark day 230+ Harvested a bunch of metal, flint, and rock on the island. The Alpha level 30 raptor showed up in skeleton form heading towards the point. Only safe way to kill it was with the cheat command. There is a male raptor I may tame tomorrow. Another T-Rex showed up but got killed by Paracers and other creatures that ganged up on it. A Bronto climbed up on the rock and over the barrier wall. Got rid of the rock since a T-Rex could also do that. Overall, lots of action observed from the safe perch of a flyer. Another visitor to the base in the pic. Island Gamera was killed by a level 30 Megadalon Shark last night. That is the message that flashed on the screen when I was at the island gathering resources. Ark, it says day 230. All of the Halloween stuff is gone from the storage locker, so are the tombstones that were planted. Crafted tombstones for the two killed pets and placed them in the pen. A T-Rex was across the cove but got itself killed when the anklyos ganged up on it. The obslick is now green. The game how has a sword and shield. Had fun with the force tame cheat over on Herbivore Island. I mainly used it to free dinos stuck in trees that cannot be freed without hitting them. Would have liked to bring back the male anklyo that has some nice colors but he won't fit on the raft. Interesting is that some of them were very hungry after being freed and harvesting berries with them. I turned them all loose. May have to unclaim them to really turn them loose since I called Perry over to check on him and two of the force tames also came over. The pig creatures were easy to get loose with a hatchet as they were just stuck in driftwood and I could avoid hitting them to cut them loose. The other dinos I used their attack mode to free them. Ark day 234. Wacked a Sarco as it was attacking a turtle. Been wanting to get rid of that threat after the last encounter at the drop. Got a pair of Pachys. They sound like goats. Quite small but strong. (Cheated by using force tame). Checked on the FT crew on the island and leveled them all up. Also Island Perry. Island Annie is missing. She may be back in the rocks behind the cove. I'll look for her next session. The bronto that went over the fence fell down the cliff and was stuck on the ledge. Got on Ronda and hit it with some tranc arrows. It got unstuck so used Ronda to get away until it lost interest in me. It is now roaming up the shore to where another one has been roaming. Looking at some Paracurs to tame next Ark Day 236. Disaster. While recovering my raft from the cove with Ronda after riding a second Paracer back to base, a high level T-Rex attacked the nearby Bronto before I could put to sea. Ronda, that idiot, went after it. We both got killed before I could knock it out with tranc arrows. Should have just abandoned her to her fate instead of trying to bail her out of trouble. Restarted the game back to day 230. Got both Pachys and a Parcer on force tame. The bronto on the cliff is down by the shore so may not end up having to be dealt with. I'll take my time getting a male making sure that it is on my side of the cove. There is a male raptor I may try for if it doesn't get itself killed. Can't use force tame on those. It has to be tranc and fed kibble. One of the photos shows the cove loaded with coe. Note the feather overlay now in the game on the Dodo Birds. Ark on reset day 235. Got a roller right away. They are stone smashers that roll up in a ball like the Sonic Hedgehog. Went raptor hunting and promptly found the level 30 T-Rex. Use the fly command to go after it. That thong took 45 tranc arrows to drop - no wonder I was unable to take it head on in yesterday's disaster. Got a level 20 male Raptor to tame and promptly had to drop a level 14 female that came running to fight. Cheated the tame to complete even though it would have taken 5 minutes due to the extremely dangerous area. Took Ronnie raptor back to the raft but it had washed up on shore and was unrecoverable. Went back to base to get hide and spare storage boxes and crafted a replacement. Transferred all supplies to the new raft but had to carry them a ways as there was no suitable place for landing. The drop did not take place as testing had shown. The Bronto didn't fall off the cliff. The male Pacuar is on my side of the cove but way back in the danger zone. Will check him out tomorrow after scouting for apex carnivores. I do have saddles for a Carno and a T-Rex. They will have to go into the new part should I decide to tame one. Ark day 238. Got Patrick on a quick tame, He took several tranc arrows to drop and smashed my thatch path fence in trying to escape. That is being upgraded with wood. He is next to Petunia which was a force Tame. You don't get any credit for taming something that way. Quick tame works when you have taken a creature down unconscious, then place narcs and its favorite food in its inventory. Only then will the quick tame command complete the tame instantly for full credit. Otherwise, it would have been a one hour or more tame. Caught three wild dilos hiding in my point camp and wiped them out with tranc arrows and the spear. No other carnos in the delta at this time. Use the roller to harvest a huge amount of rocks that was then converted into stone pipe. Ran a second lead to the water and a pipe to the cave. I was unable to get the pipe inside given the limited amount of parts types available, so the tap is just outside. The plan was to run it down to the lava area of the cave. Ark day 241. Spent two game days reinforcing the path wall to wood. Coming back, I spotted a major threat to the pets parked outside the base, a T-Rex heading for it. Dropped it with 15 tranc arrows from the cliff. It was a lower level. It flew into the sea when I dispatched it with the hatchet. Found a carno on the far shore of the cove. How it got trapped with a Bronto and Stego is a mystery, As I couldn't take it down safely with tranc arrows for a normal tame, I ended up doing force tame on all three, smashed the trapping trees using the Stego, unclaimed both the bronto and stego, and saddled the carno. Say hello to Berta. Couldn't get her on the raft. Had to swim across the narrow part of the cove fighting off the paranas, then back to the base. Wiped out a stuck trike, two parasaurs that got killed before they could run away, and three dodos. Fairly efficient meat harvester. Took Ronnie back for the raft, Jumped as far as I could into the water and fought paranas to get across. The carno floats quite well, the raptors tend to sink. Overall, a good day especially when I was able to take out the T-Rex threat from the cliff. Ark day 244. Made improvements to the base so I could move the Trikes, Patchys, pheomas, parasaurs to the new section thus clearing some room for the meat eaters. Will research Behemoth Gates so I can get the big guys safely in their own pen. An Alpha Raptor showed up on the east shore while I was gathering stuff for the gates. Cheat command to eliminate that real threat. Renamed the Carno to Christinia. Took her out hunting but the pickings were a bit slim, She is good at outfoxing spitters. Has a bit of trouble with the Dodos after killing one but if I get off, she will eats it. Once I get the T-Rex I want, it will be called Barney and will have purple war paint. Photos are of the upgraded base and a Dodo fence sitting. Ark day 247. Gathering the resources needed to make two behemeth gates to use in the Bronto pen. It will be a big enough addition to park them safely inside. The room is there. Once penned, I won't have to worry about stray T-Rexes trying to have them for lunch. Spent two game days getting enough stone and wood for one of two gates. Even with Danny, it is slow gathering for the stone. The anklyos are not efficient at getting just stone. They are good for metal and flint. Wish I could take him to the island where there are a lot of boulders close together. They are too scattered along my shoreline. Area is quiet with no carnivores in the area for once. User Petunia to haul the stone to the cave where the Smithy is at for fabricating the huge gate and gateway. Takes 450 stone, 450 wood, 450 thatch. The wood and stone are the resource that takes time to gather. Otherwise, the walls can be crafted as I gather wood, thatch and fiber. They weigh much less when crafted. Ark day 250. Got Danny, the roller, on the raft with a ramp and took him over to the island for rock harvesting. Crafted enough rock foundations to mark out the Bronto pen. Have both very resource expensive Behemoth Gates crafted and in place. Will have to go back to the island to smash up a bunch more rocks to finish up the stone wall. I make take out the one inner wall for a bit more room so the Brontos are not too close to the edge. A door to get in and one to get out without trying to turn them around. When done, I will move the one stone water pipeline. Ark day 253. Increased the width of the Bronto pen. That caused a loss of 60% of the work from day 250 but the results look better. Still need a lot more stone walls, then wood ones. A couple of more game days cutting wood and collecting stones before it is done. Ark day 256. A bit of a distraction before continuing gathering resources for the Bronto pen. Say hello to Barney the purple dinosaur. Well, he is not purple, but he is big, clumsy, hard to maneuver, and very deadly to anything in his way. (Used the dotame command after 20+ tranc arrows to the face from the cliffside.) That knocked his health a lot just to drop him before he aggro any of the Brontos nearby. This guy gets a lot of meat in a hurry. He is hard to park in the pen with the carno and raptors. More wall was built up. Still a ways to go in getting 20 more stone sections and a lot of wood ones. When done, I will get the carno on the raft to set up a base near the mountain, then later move the T-Rex there since he will be capable of dispatching the sabertooths and other meat eaters there so I can go gather obsidian from the mountain slopes. Ark day 259. The Bronto pen is finished. Moved the anklyos to the mid pen and the stego to the bronto pen. Brought Steve across from the island. He barely fit on the raft. Barney the T-Rex is a killing machine. He wiped out the pesty Bronto on the point in no time. Also a stupid Para that was getting too nosy for its own good and a trike that tried to defend it. Time for further exploration on Barney. Ark day 262. All the wild Dodos in the pen vanished again. Seems to be no reason for it. Spent the game day over on Herbivore Island harvesting wood to craft wood foundations and walls. Storing them for a project to build a base up the North shore by the mountain big enough to store a T-Rex or carno for obsidian mining on the slope. I can transfer the carno on the raft but would need to ride the T-Rex there. I can have one of the saddled pteridons follow me to ride back to the main base. Then, I only need to use the raft to travel back and forth between bases, or can use the spawn bed but can't take anything with me. On the north mountain, I will be able to get pelts from the mastodons and sabre tooths in the area using the leveled up Rex or Carno. Then, I can craft some warm clothing for the cold summit. Maybe attempt to knock out and tame one of those giant eagles. Took the Carno out hunting and gathered a ton of meat with her. She is leveling up enough to be a real threat to whatever is out there. Force tamed a bunch more stuck Trikes, Anklyos, and Stegos, unstuck them, and used them as easy transport. The tamed ones keep getting stuck on the driftwood on the beach. Ark day 265. Had to deal with an insurrection on Herbivore Island. A force tamed anklyo aggravated a wild trike while getting it unstuck and my Raptor joins in on the fight. Complete chaos for a minute. Being dark didn't help out the situation. Other then the casualty of a wild trike and parasaur, things settled down. Was harvesting and crafting materials for a 5x6 pen for the north shore base and storing them on the raft. Plans are to take the Carno with me on the raft and keep it inside when not using it. A wild Trike got stuck outside the main base and created chaos as all the meat eating pets stormed the wall to try to eat it. Restocked the mid pen with wild Dodos. They already laid a dozen eggs. Closeups for the day. Ark day 268. Turkeys have appeared. Can't pick them up with the flyer. Sailed the raft to the southern reaches of the Northeast Shore and constructed the enclosed base and dino pen. Only needed some ramps and 20 ceiling sections to complete. Then went back to get Christina, carno, and stocked the base with a high level go box, metal armor, spare crossbow, pike, rifle with scope, and spawn bed. Also, extra items for a water tap. I can bring the carno inside this structure. I have a lookout on the roof. Will add crafting items next trip. Lots of dilos and large herbivores in here. Also the big frogs nearby in the swamp. Ark day 271. Don't try to kill a super turkey. They are worse then the Dodorex. One almost killed my raptor but only because I was able to get on him and run away to the raft and get offshore. Lead the super turkey into deep water. It is currently occupied with fighting about 5 megadalon sharks. Finished supplying the Northeast base with crafting supplies. Brought a flyer on the raft for exploring along the base of the mountain. What a nasty area of raptors, dilos, and a T-Rex. Knocked out a Level Six female and tamed it. Too big for the raft, it just fits inside the base. The walls need to be one level higher and about 2 foundations longer. That will be a long term project due to the materials needed to make the improvements. Meanwhile, she can walk straight through thanks to using a dino door on each end. The flyer can either go inside or land on the roof. Left the rex in the second base with food in its inventory. Ark day 275 Worked on enlarging the enclosed pen for the T-Rex on the Northeast base. Need 14 more ceilings to complete. Added 3x3 to the length and made six high for the ceiling. Walls won't place on the dino gate but will on ceilings. Transferred a high level force tame trike to that base as well. Can use him as transport and attack of smaller carnivores. The real muscle is the T-Rex. Getting her leveled up for that job. When ready, will bring a flyer along for scouting. It can be stored inside when I take the rex or trike out to gather obsidian and crystal. Found rare flowers on the beach in this location. Ark day 277. Finished the Northeast base. Took both T-Rexes out hunting. Spotted another super turkey. I won't even sic a rex on them, they are just bad news. BTY, the Titanboas cannot be knocked out with tranc arrows. They can only be killed, then the dilos started feeding on it. Will be ready for scouting, then take the rex to the slope of the volcano to look for obsidian stone. The other raft glitched over to the point when I was cutting wood for ceilings with Barney the yet to be purple dinosaur, the male t-rex. Was able to recover it and bring it back to the dock. Ark day 279. Just at the island crafting parts for a thatch 6x6 base for Crag's Island. During the early morning of day 278, I went to unstick Island Mike. GLITCH! We were both teleported 1000 meters south into the ocean. Tried to swim him back without running out of stamina, no luck. The damn sharks attacked. I was forced to use the fly cheat to escape the same fate. Took a long time just to fly back to Herbivore Island. Will head to the Northeast base next session to paint the doors and start surveying the east slope for obsidian. Ark day 281 Made a trip to the Northeast base. Took a flyer along for surveying. Rather dangerous looking on the slopes where the obsidian rocks should be. Updated base supplies and took the Trike out berry harvesting. Went near the swamp. There were Plant Species X seeds he harvested with more rare flowers. Took the extra wood items to the raft to the prefab building parts. Back at cave base, a pesky Bronto spawned in to trash the trees now growing on the beach. Took Barney out who had it for lunch. Only one prime to cook and place into the jerky bin. May have to gather prime from the numerous paracaurs near the swamp. I have a jerky bin there. Pics of the swamp and one of Barney chowing down on the bronto. Ark day 281 Made a trip to the Northeast base. Took a flyer along for surveying. Rather dangerous looking on the slopes where the obsidian rocks should be. Updated base supplies and took the Trike out berry harvesting. Went near the swamp. There were Plant Species X seeds he harvested with more rare flowers. Took the extra wood items to the raft to the prefab building parts. Back at cave base, a pesky Bronto spawned in to trash the trees now growing on the beach. Took Barney out who had it for lunch. Only one prime to cook and place into the jerky bin. May have to gather prime from the numerous paracaurs near the swamp. I have a jerky bin there. Pics of the swamp and one of Barney chowing down on the bronto. Ark day 285. Took Christina with me to Crag's Island and built a base. While the shore is relatively safe, inland a short ways has wild raptors and carnos. Crag's Island is very close to the red Obelisk which is accessible by the sea. Crafted another batch of building materials for a future base. Now level 65 and crafted up 35 tranc darts that are used by the longneck rifle. Had to find where I have stored it. Need to find where the second one got placed. It may be up on the Northeast base. Pics are mostly from Crag's Island which takes over 1/2 a game day to reach by raft. Ark day 289. Explored the slope using the Rex. Very thick going to reach the slope. No predators at the moment. No obsidian rocks but a ton of metal ones. Spotted an egg thief. They were just added. Found a second when prepping to go to the island for metal. Took one tranc arrow and 10 seconds for it to drop. Took it back to the base in the pen with the meat eaters. And, a dangerous Compy gang across the cove with a level 34+1 whatever that is. May be the pack leader. Ark day 290. Only one day in the game due to a late start. Took Barney out through the jungle North of my base as an experiment. Nothing appears to to attack him, not even the wild raptors, unless he attacks first. The pesky Compys even ignored him. Wild raptors will attack Christina on sight but she can dispatch them quickly. Ready to attempt to establish a base on the east shore near the Tundra. That may require an overnight stay on Crag's Island. May leave Christina home for that venture. Ark day 294. It was nuts. As soon as I entered the game, all the pets went crazy trying to attack something beyond their pen. Took one game day to straighten it out. Before I quit for the evening, the same thing happened again, but this time I got a message that one of my flyer killed a wild one. Game Bug in update, Pets somehow are set to aggressive attack any wild dinos nearby. Must be given that the first time I lost some wild dodos in the melee. Thought I lost the flyers and had tamed two more including a nice high level male. Found Tina and Tommy later perched on the cliff above the base. And, the last pics, a melee involving two wild T-Rexes and several dinos that all killed each other. What a mess down there. If you look by the raft, there is a oil spill going on from a seep on the sea floor. Ark day 295. Evicted the Oviraptor to the point where I put her on roaming. She is busy running in circles looking for eggs and ignoring the ones the Dodo lay. (The tamed Oviraptor was responsible for the attacks by wild pteradons on the base,) Headed for Crag's Island with Tommy the 2nd. on the raft, then realize that I had the wrong raft that has no supplies. How did that happened? Somehow in the mess of the past couple of game days, my supplied raft was teleported to the place I was marking an oil seep and the unsupplied one teleported to the dock. Oh well, I'll head to Crag's Island later to build the water tap and stock up the Go Box there. Then, it will be on to the West Shore to build a base next to the Snow Biome. Ark day 297. Made it to Crag's Island. stocked the Go Box with weapons and armor. Also extra supplies. Did some survey flying before dark. Rafted back to Herbivore Island to harvest flint and thatch. Move the egg thief into the cove by using the flyer to pick it up and transport it away from the base. Checked on the Northeast base and collected the spoiled meat for crafting to narcs. Replaced two stim berries plot with narcoberry plots. The excess stims are only good for paint at this point. The two Rexes are supplying more then enough meat to spoil for narcs. I suppose I could tame a giant scorpion. It would be more then happy to feast on the excess spoiled meat. Ready to establish a west base by the Snow Biome. Pics of Crag's Island and Ark on the western side. Ark day 300. That is 300 hours of playing this game given that a game day equals an hour real time. Finally established a base on a calm flat beach close to the Snow Biome. What a nasty place that is. Besides brutal cold, the place and the edge is crawling with raptors, sabretooths, and all other manners of carnivores. Still, an interesting area. While I could have circumnavigated the island, that was not possible along the Snow Biome unless I threaten to burn up the raft with campfires. Will need to kill fur bearing animals go get enough pelts to craft cold weather armor. It takes 30 minutes to sail from base camp to the Snow Biome camp. The spawn bed and go box are set. Will need to add ranged weapons to it later. Took the dilo pack hunting. They were quite hungry even though they have the feed trough stocked with meat. Also, took Barney hunting. However, the Bronto he killed went flying deep into the jungle. Ark day 303. It got extremely hostile around home base. First, there were six raptors on both sides of the cove. That's too many and too close. While preparing to get rid of them, I spotted a male carno. OK, I was looking for a male for Christina. Killed one of the raptors when it came for me on the raft, two tranc arrows dispatched it. The carno was about to attack a paramecium, bad news, however, the other raptor and the carno focused on me. Dropped the carno and raptor. Did the dotame, put a saddle on the new pet and had him finish off the raptor. Took him back to base after some easy hunting. That night, a wild raptor tried to get me from outside the base. I couldn't figure what was going on until I seen it trying to glitch through the wall. Killed it. Took Christina carno out at daybreak to look for more. Found the mate up on the cliff, I've never seen them there before always on the shore. Good thing I had her, ran into a level 34 female carno on my side of the cove. It attacked. Christina kicked her butt. I don't think that Carlos, the male, would have been tough enough at this early stage to do so. Killed two more raptors along my side of the beach along with a bunch of spitters. Checked the North base later. Berta Rex is now tough enough to take on most anything. Took out a high level paramecium, that big mammal, which gave 4 prime which I was able to cook for prime jerky. Ark day 306. Gathering and crafting wood building materials for the future North end base by the Snow Biome. That one will have to be wood and enclosed due to the danger of the giant eagles present. Took Barney out for an exploration ran and promptly killed more raptors in the cove and beyond. Note, Even wild Carnos avoid attacking him. Interesting canyon I went through back to the East Coast. Loaded up on Trike, Turtle, and got 4 prime off a Bronto that is now cooked and in the jerky bin. Ark day 308. Harvested stone with Danny to craft a pair of mortar pestle, pair of refining forges, and a pair of Smithy's for the satellite bases to the West. I then took Barney Rex North along the beach and around the swamp to the Far Peak Camp. He got there by noon. Killed a snake which has someone's pick, spear, shirt, pants, and shoes in its inventory. Had him follow Berta but he was always right on tho of her. I have that same problem when a rex follows by being too close and accidentally hitting them while cutting wood. Left Barney there and brought Berta back to main base. Got back before dark. She needs to get used and leveled up. I think that I will keep both Rex at main base and return the force tame trike to Herbivore Island. I can always make it to that camp by noon if I leave early with daylight before heading into the jungle around the swamp. The entire area is crawling with raptors, carnos, spitters, snakes, etc...They don't bother the Rex. I passed up that green drop. You can see why. There were three spitters and a raptor in attack distance to it. Both Rexes will attack together. Ark day 310. Took Barney back to home base and the Trike on the raft back to the island. Rafted over, left it there, and rode Barney back to base. Saw a parachium convention, the most in one spot. Also tons of raptors, dilos, and several carnos around the swamp. Killed a dozen snakes. One had someone's inventory in it. For going back for the raft ans the island trike, I flew on Tommy. He has enough stamina to make the flight there without landing to rest. I called him to follow while loading the trike on the raft. He flew behind the raft to the island. Left the Trike there on wander, left the raft on the beach since it was the spare, and flew back on Tommy. Another T -Rex was in the cove but a pair of stegos beat it up where it died in the water. Brought two force tamed female dodos back to the base for eggs. The game resets keep wiping out most the wild ones. Pics includes the four pteriadons I now have. Ark day 312. Rafted op to Crag's Island with supplies, refining forge, and smithy. Installed and basic stocked the smithy and refining forge. Harvested a bunch of wood and placed two fire pits by the tiller of the raft. Next, went to the Snow base and stocked the same supplies there. Was a lot more dangerous in that area as I was forced to kill two kitties, (Sabertooths.) Later, lit the fires on the raft and sailed into the ice pack. The area is loaded with oil nodes and crystals but yield on those are low. Was able to get some warmth from the torch when not by the fires on the raft. Forced to flee the area when three Giant Eagles appeared. They were kept busy by fighting more sabertooths below them. Unfortunately, they only give meat and hide, no pelts. May try to tame one on the next trip. Saw my first Spino while rafting the cut between Crag's Island and the mainland. It was swimming in the water. Managed to sneak by it without being spotted. They are fast swimmers. Just two more pics as I take Barney across the cove at the narrow. One shows those pesky ants. the second all of the dinos next to the ramp wall. Killed a carno that took an interest in a phenoma Barney just ate. He had an inventory on him that consist of berries, stone and tranc arrows, pick and hatchet. Ark Day 315. Took Barney to Far Peak. Could only get halfway up the slope, will have to try further North on the slope. Killed an eagle with him. Another Sarco loaded with someone's inventory. Triggered a big fight and just sat by and watched the fun. An albino Titanboa joined in. It and the Carno survived. Back to Herbivore Island for more wood and flint. Kept all but the narcoberries on the raft. A ton of spoiled meat to craft narcs thanks to Barney. Only a pair of Brontos, something must have happened to the other two. Mostly, they wandered into the water where the sharks tore them up. Ark Day 317. Took a trip to the snow biome to get some kittys. (Sabertooths.) None around. Two T-Rexes rampages about tearing up everything living on that spawn point, even the giant eagles. So, lit the fires on the raft and headed around the iceberg. Ran into a blizzard, but found the penguins. got oil and crystal before the extreme cold got too much. Need to take a stack of cooked meat since the cold causes the hunger to kick way up. On the way back around the iceberg, I headed further away into the sea and ran smack dab into a force field. (Edge of the Ark world.) Had to get closer to shore to avoid it. Back to Herbivore Island and back to home base. I'll have to take barney to Far Peak and find kittys up there to tame. Ark Winter Wonderland. Nuts, snow and ice everywhere, and constantly freezing if you don't have winter clothing which requires pelts, lots of them, that require a trip to the really freezing snow biome to like Mastodons and Megaloes. Looks like I will be concentrating on my story until Winter ends or cold weather clothing becomes available. New players are going to be screwed. (Soon was fixed by an update.) (Note, this original game was taken far beyond Winter Wonderland until Scorched Earth was released. Added all new creature tames including the Titansaur which fell into the camp becoming trapped between the wall and canyon.)
  22. Hi, I'm working on a project that includes the 2 main characters peforming songs based on different movies,videogames,tv shows and more, including some songs based on Ark and the different packs (not the official music from the games,but fan made stuff). the performance would be re-creating parts of the story from the thing the song is based on,for example the song based on the Ark base game aka The Island would re-create the boss fights against the Megapithecus,Broodmother,Dragon and Overseer and would and with the Ascension scene. I'm planning on working on 1 at a time and with The Island finished,the next Song will be the 1 based on scorched earth, but from what I've seen so far (haven't looked that deep into it yet since I'm also working on other stuff),scorched earth seems to be very light on the story with the Ascension scene missing and the only boss beeing the manticore. So my question would be if there's someting else important or cool I could include in the Performance like Locations,Armor,Creatures or anything else,note that is should be something the player is doing and not something based on what Characters from the Lore like Helena did. other important things to say: 1.if someone is wondering how I couldn't come up with something myself,I haven't Played scorched earth or Ark in general,I'm only getting my infos from Youtube videos,the Ark wiki and other places like some forums. 2.I'm sorry if some parts of the text sounds strange,I'm from germany. thank you very much
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