Parents' Guide to

Ark: Survival Evolved

By Franklin Rinaldi, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Violent survival MMO tests skills against humans, dinos.

Game Mac , PlayStation 4 , Windows , Xbox One 2015
Ark: Survival Evolved Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this game.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 50 parent reviews

age 16+

It all depends on the server.

Father of 6. Ark PvP player since release. 3 of my children have played or are playing ark single player. That part of the game is fine for children 7+ to have fun. As for pve I wouldn't let my children play unsupervised. Being online with no age restrictions other people can talk to your children in game or get gamer tag to msg or invite to a party so there is always that risk of stranger interactions. As for PvP I don't let my children play and highly recommend parents do the same. The community in-game is toxic. The aim of the game is to destroy everyone else and be the strongest which takes alot of time and commitment. Go to sleep, wake up and it could all be gone. Some adults find it hard to deal with that so could only imagine a child. In my years of playing I have encountered in-game or through private msgs and/or xb parties, verbal harrassment, course language, racial slurs, homophobic slurs, threats of violence, intimidation, caging, taxing, the list goes on. Think if your child has the ability to deal with that.
age 10+

Great single player watch community

It's a great game with many possibilities single player is amazing for kids dinos and equipment can be easily spawned in theres no need to pay for skins or additions other than new maps. I wouldnt personally allow mine to play pvp as it's a fairly toxic community pve is much nicer but dependant on the server and how well it is run. I'd advise joining discord for any server claiming to be family friendly and watch for a bit before joining the game alot are far from family friendly. You can also buy your own server for your kids to play with friends this can be locked.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (50 ):
Kids say (145 ):

Set in a lush world of dinosaurs, this action-packed title pushes the limits of a survival game. Though playing Ark: Survival Evolved can be difficult and time-consuming, especially when you're taming dinosaurs, it's extremely engaging and addictive. The ability to play alone on your own server is a nice feature, giving you time to get familiar with the basic features. Of course, if you really want to make your time in Ark more immersive, you need to join a server with others. If you choose a PvE (player-vs.-enemy) server, you get the benefits of working with other players to help you progress through levels and building a thriving society of cooperation and completion. If you're looking for more of a challenge, jump onto a PvP (player-vs.-player) server and see if you can stake a claim on the island while defending yourself from rival communities.

Surprisingly, even though this isn't designed to be an educational game, Ark provides a very detailed dossier on the creatures you encounter. Designed to help with gameplay, this information also teaches about the dinosaurs in a manner that's very entertaining and memorable. In fact, these lessons take you beyond the violence of the game and get you to appreciate the world and the creatures that live in it. The one significant downside is that you have to constantly keep an eye out for safe, secure locations when you're ready to stop playing. See, when you're logged out, your avatar remains in the last location you left it in the game world, meaning it can be killed by roaming animals or enemy players. If you're killed, you'll lose all the items on your person unless you return to your body within a certain amount of time. That hard-core gameplay element can annoy or even frustrate some players. Ark: Survival Evolved may not be for everyone, but for those looking for a challenge, its engaging action and society-building mechanics will keep you entertained for a long time.

Game Details

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