Skeptical of Early Access? Try this for size. Studio Wildcard has announced and launched the first fully fledged expansion pack for ARK: Survival Evolved, a game which itself is still in Early Access. ARK: Scorched Earth will set you back £15 / $20 and Studio Wildcard claim it’s “completely finished”.
"All of us at Wildcard are tremendously excited to see how these new features alter the dynamics of the long-term ARK metagame," said studio co-founder Jeremy Stieglitz.
"While we've had Scorched Earth and future Arks in the planning stages since the project's inception, establishing its inter-ARK travel technology was the essential reason for making this content available to players right now."
Maybe it’s because I’m not fully in the loop with what’s going on with ARK and its long-term plans, but the idea of releasing a $20 expansion for a game which you’re already selling as unfinished seems incredibly shady. ARK players have been waiting two years to see Survival Evolved completed, but in the meantime Studio Wildcard has been using its resources to create an entirely new paid component rather than finish the base game? The very idea of Early Access to me is that you get all new content and updates added free of charge, at the very least between the time you buy it and the time it launches in its entirety.
Anyway, if you’re interested in ARK: Scorched Earth it contains a new desert landmass to explore with six distinct biomes, new creatures, more than 50 new items to craft and enhanced weather effects like electric storms or sand storms.
Ark: Scorched Earth is out now on PC and Xbox One.
What do you make of the practice of selling expansions for Early Access games? Interested in ARK: Scorched Earth? Let us know!