One of the biggest questions continued to be asked amongst the Ark community is whether or not servers will be wiped at the full release of the game. For the answer on the matter Ark’s Lead Designer, Jeremy Stieglitz, took to Reddit to leave a letter to the fans to let them know what the current plan was:
Alright then, I’ve thought a lot about this, read a lot of commentary on the subject, and understand the time players have been putting into the game. Here is the final word on the matter: we will not be wiping the Official Servers on ARK’s release (and as mentioned, we will do everything in our power to ever avoid wiping — we all felt the sting from the launch duping bug all too well). We will keep existing active Official Servers as they are post-ship — no wipe — though at ship we may at our discretion re-purpose certain empty or near-empty Official Servers with 1 month prior warning (we’ll provide archives to data of such servers if anyone wishes to re-host). New Servers will be ADDED to help accommodate new players at that time; we can afford it 😉
We take the time players put into the game seriously, and we want to reward them for that. The reward is having a permanent impact on your ARK, simple as that.
Thanks everyone for your support, as we surely do need it. Please spread the word!
ARK Lead Designer, Lead Programmer, Development Director, Co-Creative Director, Co-Founder
While there is not a solid release date, we do know that the planned official release was slated at the end of 2016. Due to the nature of the game, much like Minecraft, Ark: Survival Evolved benefits on the fact that the games design team is all based on continuously updating, adding to the game and handling select balancing issues. After all, the Island map just got a pretty hefty update, and now it is the Center Maps turn with the Redwood treatment.
[See Related: Ark: Xbox And PC Server Hosting]
For those still playing the game on Steam’s Early Access or the Xbox Preview Program, many hours have been spent building and tailoring communities. At the same time, many might find themselves complacent or bored of the game if not told to restart from the beginning. Typically in beta and preview games, especially one with such a competitive nature, wipes are common. Whether or not the decision is the right one, it is good to know that at least the team knows what they want to do.