ARK: Survival Evolved will not be available to purchase in stores until August 29, 2017, Studio Wildcard has announced on the official forums. The game has completed its gold master and certification process, but the necessary steps took longer than anticipated to complete and an additional delay is the unfortunate result.
In the forum post, Jat says of the delay that “it wasn’t what we had wanted, nor planned but where we currently stand.” The company would have announced the news sooner, but wanted to be sure about how things would play out before making it official.
According to the same update, the planned Ragnarok DLC is now scheduled for release on August 29, also later than anticipated. Extra time in development means “a gigantic update, even bigger than we initially thought.” Specifically, it will work out to a 25% increase in the world’s size, with new biomes, a Wyvern canyon, new engrams, a boss encounter, and more.
“Over the next few weeks, you will see a lot of priority placed on the PC and multiplayer versions of the game,” added Jat, “now that we’re completely wrapped up with our gold master. We are planning some immediate patches to take care of community concerns, as well as some mid-month goals and more going forward.”
That content will eventually come to the console versions, and the developers are currently hard at work on fixes for multiplayer bosses, the much-loathed baby-to-juvie-stasis issue, and a known exploit that allows some players to sneak under the map and raid people. Timelines for these tweaks weren’t announced.
“Thank you so much for your patience the past few months and all the support!” Jat said in conclusion. “We will make sure that ARKs launch is a successful one and the game is in a healthy state. It’s going to be a hectic few weeks ahead, and we’re very excited! We still have a lot more planned for ARK, and even after release, the journey will continue!”
ARK: Survival Evolved began development in 2014, and has remained an extraordinarily successful title on Steam almost since its inception. It currently is available for purchase on Steam as an Early Access title, with an MSRP of $59.99, in case you’re not ready to wait for the official debut this August.
Jason Venter posted a new article, ARK: Survival Evolved Faces An Unexpected Delay
Not sure how much it matters when the "release" feels largely symbolic and the game isn't actually anywhere near finished.