Last week, developer Studio Wildcard upped the price of its hit action-adventure survival game (featuring dinosaurs) Ark: Survival Evolved, which is still in Early Access, from $29.99 USD to $59.99 USD. According to the developer at the time, the increase was made in preparation to accommodate the game leaving Early Access on August 8th and “to ensure retail parity” with the versions of the game that will be hitting consoles next month. All of that being said, the increase, was at the very least, a bit controversial among the game’s community and gamers in general.
RocketWerkz CEO New Zealand developer Dean Hall — who you may know as the creator of DayZ — has since take to Twitter to criticize the decision.
Just so we’re clear on my opinion: the price increase for Ark is ****ing OUTRAGEOUS.
— Dean Hall (@rocket2guns) July 6, 2017
Hall continues, saying that Ark is “nowhere near ready” for said price, and pointed to the decision as “greed – pure and simple.” Meanwhile, Garry Newman, the creator of Garry’s Mod and Early Access hit Rust, responded to Hall, suggesting Widlcard knows what it is doing, and other developers could take note.
They’re good at making money, dlc, consoles, price hikes, still in ea, doesn’t really seem to hurt them. Maybe we could learn something.
— Garry Newman (@garrynewman) July 7, 2017
Hall followed up his Twitter comments with talking to PC Gamer about the whole ordeal, saying the following:
“I believe Ark, like DayZ or any other Early Access game, should remain in Early Access until it achieves the expected performance and bug standards of it’s price.”
Hall admitted that the price increase is unlikely to harm Wildcard’s position of strength in regards to the commercial side of things; however, it does show that whoever is making the price decisions at Wildcard “don’t care about the state of the game and just want to get into boxed retail as quickly as possible.”
“So, it’s not so much the price that worries me. But those making the pricing decisions seem so disconnected from the development. It seems to me that the release of Early Access is fairly arbitrary and being driven around the desire to have boxed sets on shelves – rather than actually having a relatively bug-free and balanced game.”
Ark: Survival Evolved is available on PS4, Xbox One, PC, Mac, and Linux.