Category Archives: Guides

Here you’ll find some guides for setting up your ARK server. Want to request a guide? Contact us here!

ARK Modding tutorials superthread

ARK Modding tutorials superthread

Finding tutorials for ARK Dev Kit can be a bit challenging. Even though it’s way better and easier nowadays, there isn’t really an untapped ocean of material available. In this post, you’ll find our top picks. Enjoy!

Zen Rowe’s all video tutorials

Zen Rowe, a former modder and nowadays working at WildCard has made a series of 24 very in-depth structured and educational modding tutorials available on YouTube. This is a must-have. Check out all his videos here,

Playlist to all 24 videos

Brick Whut’s YouTube-series

Even though this series is a bit outdated as it was made in 2015 when the ARK Dev Kit was new, and the basics are still there and he explains them well in these 14 videos.

Playlist to all 14 videos

UE Forums

Yes, forums can be a real hit or miss but the Unreal Engine forums, and in this case, the ARK Survival Evolved subforum sure is a hit. Tons of guides, tutorials, free assets, helpful people and also have announcements and new.

Check it out here

Unreal Engine forums
Unreal Engine forums

Arkmodding.net

The first unofficial ARK modding scene-related website. Have some guides and tutorials. Most of the content is rather old and the website hasn’t been updated since 2018 but it still has some good content.

They have a rather active discord server though, and the invite can be found on their site.

Check it out here

arkmodding.net
arkmodding.net

Exilogs mapping series

Also a bit outdated but it’s still a good source of information, primarily for mapping and making maps for ARK.

Playlist to all 8 videos here

The Wookie’s beginners tutorial series

Also, a bit outdated and very informative, and beginner-friendly.

Playlist to all 13 videos here

Mathew Wadsteins huge collection for UE

This is most likely one of the, if not, the best video source for working with Unreal Engine. Granted, it’s not specifically for ARK Dev Kit and many of these things can be used there as well. And most importantly, you will get a whole new depth of understanding of the Unreal Engine, which will help you a lot in making ARK Mods as well.

All his several hundred videos can be found here

Alter dino spawns in ARK

Do you want to alter dino spawns in ARK? In order to control the percentages of your ARKs native wild population, you can use mods such as Simple Spawners, or use the built-in system for controlling it. It might seem a bit overwhelming at first but once you did it yourself a few times it’ll be really simple to understand.

All of these settings should be placed in your Game.ini.

DinoSpawnWeightMultiplier

DinoSpawnWeightMultipliers=(DinoNameTag=<tag>,SpawnWeightMultiplier=<factor>,OverrideSpawnLimitPercentage=<override>,SpawnLimitPercentage=<limit>)

This example is listed in the official documentation. Let’s break it down real quick. Here are the arguments explained,

Explaination of the arguments.
Arguments

tag(string) – Dinosaur type to adjust, see Creature IDs (column Name Tags).
factor(float) – Weight factor for this type.
override(false) – If true, use the specified SpawnLimitPercentage.
limit(float) – Maximum percentage (among all spawns) for this type.

Getting started

First off, remember this system is dynamic, meaning it changes over time, based on a number of factors like if players are in that area, if it’s in stasis or not, or if it’s badly populated, etc. Secondly, even though you can control the values, there is still RNG in place that makes it more dynamic as well.

So, for example, say that you want to change the spawns of the Brontosaurus. First, grab its dino name tag, or just commonly called the tag. After that, we have the weight multiplier, which basically decided how often this particular spawn will be called. In theory, if you have this multiplier set to 1(=100%), a whole container could be filled with Brontosauruses. But since ARK spawns it by RNG(and not to mention that creatures are constantly killed, tamed, or despawns) it is extremely unlikely it’ll happen.

Lastly, we have the spawn limit percentage, which basically sets a hard limit on the number of the particular dino that can spawn in each of the containers it’s in. Setting the limit to 0.1(=10%) means that the container can only be filled with a maximum of 10% Brontosauruses.  When the limit is reached, another creature will be picked instead. The OverrideSpawnLimitPercentage must be set to true for this to take effect.

DinoSpawnWeightMultipliers=(
 DinoNameTag=Bronto,
 SpawnWeightMultiplier=0.8,
 OverrideSpawnLimitPercentage=true,
 SpawnLimitPercentage=0.1
)

Keep in mind that ARK usually has several containers that can spawn the Brontosaurus. By applying this code, all of those containers will be affected by the code. You can specify containers individually, see further down. Also keep in mind that when you alter the spawns of a creature, all other creatures that are in that container can be affected as well.

Modded creatures

If you are trying to alter the spawn rates of a modded creature, you’d have to rely on the author of the mod to give you dino name tags. If that’s not available, or the custom creature has the same tag as its vanilla counterpart(which is fairly common), the easiest solution is to remove the creature from spawning altogether using NPCReplacements, and then control its spawn with mods such as Simple Spawner.

NPC Replacements

This is useful when you want to replace any given type of creature with another or disable it altogether. The following code will replace all Brontosauruses with Dodos,

NPCReplacements=(FromClassName="Sauropod_Character_BP_C", ToClassName="Dodo_Character_BP_C")

And the following code will remove Brontosauruses from spawning at all,

NPCReplacements=(FromClassName="Sauropod_Character_BP_C", ToClassName="")

Conclusion and exceptions

So if you want a high chance of finding a Brontosaurus in those areas, but you don’t want that many of them, set the SpawnWeight high, and the LimitPercentage low so it’s more likely to get picked but will not be in greater numbers.

Some exceptions to this exist, for example, Quetzes, which have a separate container only for them. In such cases, the Quetz will obviously be picked by the RNG-roll every time. Also, consider that many custom modded maps both edit existing vanilla containers and adds containers of their own. Consult the author of those maps if unsure. 

As always, remember to,

  • Save your world and let the server shut down properly before editing your Game.ini
  • Make sure that the file is not set to read-only so your server won’t overwrite your changes upon rebooting.
  • Do a wild dino wipe after you’ve made changes to anything spawn related.

Hopefully, this little guide about alter dino spawns in ARK was helpful. Let us know in the comments below!

 

How to activate keys on Steam

How to activate keys on Steam

  1. Open up your Steam client, or use the web interface in your browser.
  2. Find Games, select “Activate a Product on Steam…“.
  3. In the Product Activation wizard, click Next.
  4. Agree to the Product Activation Agreement.
  5. Enter the key / Product Code. Click Next.
  6. Key is activated and tied to your account. Click Finish.
  7. Click Next to install the game or Cancel to discard the installation.

Increasing attributes per level

This will show you how to change attributes gained per level, for players, tamed creatures, and wild creatures.

PerLevelStatsMultiplier_Player[<attribute>]=<multiplier>
PerLevelStatsMultiplier_DinoTamed<type>[<attribute>]=<multiplier>
PerLevelStatsMultiplier_DinoWild[<attribute>]=<multiplier>

The attribute is specified with a number, see the table below. Take note that not all creatures use all attributes. The multiplier multiplies the base value. Setting it to 2, doubles the base value.

0: Health
1: Stamina / Charge Capacity
2: Torpidity
3: Oxygen / Charge Regeneration
4: Food
5: Water
6: Temperature
7: Weight
8: MeleeDamageMultiplier / Charge Emission Range
9: SpeedMultiplier
10: TemperatureFortitude
11: CraftingSpeedMultiplier

PerLevelStatsMultiplier_DinoTamed also have a typesetting,
_Add: Multiplier immediately added for tamed dino
_Affinity: Multiplier applied dependant on affinity

Make sure you use the correct one. Not specifying the type will work the same way as for players and wild creatures, for each tamed level-up point. Here are some examples,

PerLevelStatsMultiplier_DinoTamed[0]=2.0
# Will double base health for all tamed creatures level-up points.
PerLevelStatsMultiplier_DinoTamed_Add[0]=2.0
# Will double base health for all creatures upon taming/summoning.
PerLevelStatsMultiplier_DinoTamed_Affinity[0]=2.0
# Will double base health for all tamed creatures level-up points when gaining affinity for level-ups while taming. 

PerLevelStatsMultiplier_DinoWild[2]=4.0
# Makes wild creatures gain quadruple torpor per wild level-up point.

PerLevelStatsMultiplier_Player[9]=1.5
# Makes all players speed to be multiplied by 1.5 for each level-up point spent in speed.

These settings should be placed in your Game.ini.

Increasing damage and resistance on creatures

Not satisfied with how easy ARK becomes once you get a tamed decent Trike/Raptor? Fear not, you can adjust wild creatures damage output and resistance with two simple lines of code.

DinoDamageMultiplier=1
DinoResistanceMultiplier=1

DinoDamageMultiplier is a multiplier that controls wild creatures damage output. Since its a multiplier, it takes the creatures base damage and gained levels into melee damage and multiplies it with whatever value you choose. Setting this value to 2, will make every wild creature do double base damage. This may not seem like much, but with other factors weighed in, this can cause some serious damage.

DinoResistanceMultiplier works in a similar way. It’s a multiplier that controls wild creatures general resistance. Take note that certain creatures have individual resistances for damages of certain types. This setting multiplies the general resistance regardless of the creature’s damage natural damage resistance. To increase their resistance, you enter a smaller number. Setting it to 0.5 makes them take half base damage. Same thing here, this can really make a difference.

These settings should be placed in your GameUserSettings.ini.

Changing it for specific classes

DinoClassDamageMultipliers=(
ClassName="<classname>",
Multiplier=<multiplier>
)
TamedDinoClassDamageMultipliers=(
ClassName="<classname>",
Multiplier=<multiplier>
)
DinoClassResistanceMultipliers=(
ClassName="<classname>",
Multiplier=<multiplier>
)
TamedDinoClassResistanceMultipliers=(
ClassName="<classname>",
Multiplier=<multiplier>
)

The same principle but with individual classes where <classname> is the creature’s class name and <multiplier> is the specified multiplier of your choosing.

To get a creature’s class name, look at its spawn code and add a _C at the end since its a class. A regular Trike as an example,

admincheat SpawnDino "Blueprint'/Game/PrimalEarth/Dinos/Trike/Trike_Character_BP.Trike_Character_BP'" 500 0 0 35

Would result in,

DinoClassDamageMultipliers=(
ClassName="Trike_Character_BP_C",
Multiplier=2
)

These settings should be placed in your Game.ini.

How to change wild creature levels

Wild levels of creatures is decided by 3 factors,

  • RNG.
  • DifficultyOffset & OverrideOfficialDifficulty.
  • Core mods that remaps levels.

Some exceptions exist, like Wyverns, TEK creatures, and RockDrakes, they can always spawn at a few levels higher. The same thing applies to core mods that alter creatures levels, and core mods that alter difficulty, even though the latter should no longer be used since we can change difficulty ourselves now.

DifficultyOffset must be a value between 0.01 and 1.0, the higher the value, the more difficult gameplay. This does not control creature levels by itself but rather controls various things like chances for high-level wild creatures, loot drops qualities, taming efficiency, etc.

OverrideOfficialDifficulty controls the max potential level a wild creature can be. Each increase of this value generally represents 30 potential wild levels. If you are playing on TheIsland with DifficultyOffset=1 and OverrideOfficialDifficult=10, the max wild level will be 10*30=300 and the minimum wild level will be 10.

These settings should be placed in your GameUserSettings.ini.

Read more

 

How to install a mod manually through FTP

In some cases, you might want to install a mod manually. Some providers have issues with mods over a certain filesize and their installer is not fast enough to grab the files from Steam CMD before it stalls, resulting in a bad mod install where some issues arise, for example, engrams that can’t be learned and creatures that don’t spawn. In such cases, you should consider switching providers to a more reliable one.

Regardless, in this little guide, we’ll be taking a look at how to upload and install a mod manually instead. I will use WinSCP as a client, Nitrado as a provider, and Gaia as a mod.

FTP

You’ll need an FTP-client to upload the files. Read more about the FTP protocol here. Personally, I prefer FileZilla and WinSCP, both are easy to understand, powerful, and free, but in reality, any FTP client does the trick for this simple task. This guide will show how it’s done with WinSCP.

Some providers use FTP and some use SFTP. The only real difference is that SFTP is more secure. Any FTP client can connect and transfer files fine regardless of which protocol is used and your provider will tell you which you should use to connect to their service.

Step 1

Subscribe to the mod, let Steam client download it. Launch ARK and let it install completely, wait until this text has disappeared. Remember to turn off your server until the whole process is complete!

Installing mods

Look into your Mods-folder if you have the folder and .mod-file with the corresponding ID. Learn how to find mod ID’s here.

Step 2

After you’ve installed your FTP-client, get the credentials from your provider. These credentials are usually found in the activation mail you got. Some providers also have the credentials in plain text in their control panel if you are logged in. If you can’t find your credentials, contact their support.

Enter the credentials in your FTP-client and connect.
Locate the Mods-folder, drag your local files to the remote location.

FTP credentials
Enter your credentials and hit login / connect
Drag the files to the Mods-folder

Step 3

Once fully uploaded, go back into your server’s control panel and add the mod ID to its command line. This is done differently on different providers. On some you have to do it on the startup command line, some providers have a separate GUI textbox for it. Consult your support if unsure.

Enter mod ID and hit save

Separate mod ID’s by a comma, like this,

558079412,894109713,1404697612,2129255731

Start the server and let it verify the install. your server should be up and running rather quickly as it doesn’t have to download the mod. You have now manually installed a mod to your server.

Quick note, if your service provider struggles to install mods over 1-1,5GB in filesize, you will most likely have to repeat this process every time the mod is updated. There are better and worse server providers out there and you often get what you pay for. Nitrado is one of the best ones in our opinion, and they also host all official servers for ARK. Check them out below!

Locate Game.ini and GUS.ini

Singleplayer

Both Game.ini and GameUserSettings.ini are located in,
X:\Steam\steamapps\common\ARK\ShooterGame\Saved\Config\WindowsNoEditor
Filepath may differ a bit.

Dedicated

On dedicated rented servers, the file path can differ quite a bit. Generally, they can both be found at a similar location like this(Nitrado),
arkse\Shootergame\Saved\Config\WindowsServer

Remember to exit your singleplayer game and your server before editing these!

Exceptions

In some cases, singleplayer ini’s can have permission problems, they can be set to read-only, or your game overwrites the ini after you’ve started it. Check file permissions if your changes won’t work.

Similar for rented dedicated servers, where they can offer a GUI they created themself, they can offer you to edit the ini through your browser, or you can have FTP-access to edit the files directly. Check with your provider!

How to alter mods engrams

If you need help on how to find a mods engram, checkout this little guide!

Code

OverrideNamedEngramEntries=(EngramClassName="EngramEntry_AutomaticFeeder_C",EngramLevelRequirement=18,EngramPointsCost=0,EngramHidden=False,EngramLevelRequirement=3)

Legend

EngramClassName” – Specify the engrams class name.
EngramLevelRequirement” – Specify at which level the engram should be available for players to learn.
EngramPointsCost” – How many engram points it’ll cost to unlock it.
EngramHidden” – Defines if the engram is hidden or not. Boolean value, true or false. Setting this value to true will make it unavailable and players will not see it regardless of the other values.

Further info

https://ark.gamepedia.com/Server_Configuration#Engram_Entries

Locate and alter mod engrams

Do the mod you are using have an engram you want to disable/edit and the author hasn’t provided you with an engram-list? You can find mod engrams manually by browsing the mods folder in explorer with these 3 simple steps!

Step 1

Locate your Mods-folder. Filepath may differ a bit.
X:\Steam\steamapps\common\ARK\ShooterGame\Content\Mods

Go to the Steam Workshop mod page and look at the last digits in the URL. That’s the ID of the mod. Once you have the ID, enter the folder in your Mods-folder that has that number.

Steam Workshop modpage ID
Your Mods-folder

Step 2

Either search in the mods folder or manually browse through the subfolders in it until you can find what you are looking for.

Step 3

Copy the name of it, in this example, “EngramEntry_AutomaticFeeder“.

Insert the engram into your code, don’t forget to add a “_C” at the end since it’s a class. Customize it to your liking. When you are satisfied, add the code into your Game.ini.

Remember to exit your singleplayer game or stop your server before updating your Game.ini-file.

OverrideNamedEngramEntries=(EngramClassName="EngramEntry_AutomaticFeeder_C",EngramLevelRequirement=18,EngramPointsCost=0,EngramHidden=False,RemoveEngramPreReq=True)

Also checkout how to customize engrams and how to locate and edit your Game.ini & GameUserSettings.ini!

Official server configuration

This is the absolute best resource for anyone interested in tweaking their server, or singleplayer game for ARK. Bookmark this right away!

https://ark.gamepedia.com/Server_Configuration

Game Server Owners Discord

Their discord server was started by game server owners, for game server owners with the goal to provide all the info you need to run a successful online community and game server.

Here you can get a lot of help with everything server-related. They also have self-promotion, tips on how to grow your server/community, recommendations of server providers, technical help, patch notes, game news & server support both for Win/UNIX.

Supported games are,
ARK
Atlas
Conan Exiles

Make sure to swing by – https://discord.gg/rU9nMmC!

Create a Wyvern TEK Saddle

Author

https://steamcommunity.com/id/010519932016

Guide

[Created by TimeWalker|ProjectK. Contact me if you have questions or need help]
Discord: TimeWalker#5238
Email: ProjectK@web.de

ARK DEV KIT

  • Find the File: SM_Tek_Wyvern_Saddle (Static Mesh)
  • Right Click -> Export -> as FBX -> Change Name to custom name
  • Find the File: Wyvern (Skeletal Mesh)
  • Right Click -> Export -> as FBX -> Change Name to custom name

BLENDER

  • Clean the Scene (Delete Cube, Camera and Light)
  • File -> Import -> FBX -> Static Mesh (Tek Saddle)
  • File -> Import -> FBX -> Skeletal Mesh (Wyvern)
  • Check you are in “Object Mode”
  • Click on the Wyvern (Creature) Mesh -> Delete
  • Select the TEK Mesh and the Rig using “SHIFT”
  • CTRL+P -> Amature Deform -> with Automatic Weights
  • Right side of the Screen, you see the “Object tree”
  • Rightclic on “Wyvern” -> Delete
  • Zoom out to see your mesh
  • Select MESH and Rig using SHIFT
  • File -> Export -> FBX
  • Set Export Scale to: 0.01
  • Name your file and Choose Target directory -> Export

ARK DEV KIT

  • Drag and drop the created Wyvern saddle file into your mod folder
  • a window will show up, do following selections:
  • Import Mesh: YES
  • Skeletal Mesh: YES
  • Animation: NO
  • Material: NO
  • Texture: NO
  • For Skeleton: Select the Original WYVERN_SKELETON file
  • Leave the rest to Default, click IMPORT ALL
  • Open the SM_Tek_Wyvern_Saddle (Static Mesh) to get the Material
  • Apply the Material from the Static mesh to your new Skeletal Mesh
  • Search in the DevKit for any dino saddle (for example Baryonyx)
  • COPY the file “PrimalItemArmor_BaryonyxSaddle” to your mod folder
  • Rename this file so it fits your Mod name
  • Open up the copied Saddle file
  • Set Following informations:
  • Equip Requires Explicit Owner Tags = Wyvern
  • Descriptive Name Base: Wyvern Tek Saddle
  • Item Description: Equip a Wyvern with this to ride it.
  • Components to attach:
  1. Find the Section MESH, replace the Baryonyx Skeletal mesh with your new WYVERN saddle Skeletal Mesh
  2. Anim Blueprint Generated Class: TestWyvern_AnimBP
  • To add a Saddle slot on the Wyvern:
  1. Create a CHILD copy of the Wyvern
  2. Create COPY of TAMED INVENTORY COMPONENT TEMPLATE
  3. Replaced TAMED INVENTORY COMPONENT TEMPLATE on your CHILD Wyvern with the Copy you made
  4. open the Dino TamedInventoryComponent_Wyvern COPY file
  5. go to Equippable Item Types: Add new -> Saddle

Custom Spawners

Here you can find spawners for custom maps. They are useful both for modders that want their creatures to spawn on map X, and for server administrators that want to see which available spawners map X have for them to manipulate and populate.

Take note that these spawners are provided as-is. They’ve been sent to me and can be publically shared. It’s always up to the mapmaker to make sure that these works and are up to date.

You can download the spawners as an archive over a GitHub by either using the GitHub desktop application or using the websites GUI(clone/download as .zip). After you’ve downloaded them, place them directly in your Mods-folder. Make sure they keep the exact same folder hierarchy or they won’t work properly. Example below,

If you are a mapmaker and want people to have access to your custom spawners, contact us here.

Download the Custom Spawners on GitHub here