Ark: Survival Evolved's free-to-play spin-off Survival of the Fittest is being reintegrated into the main game.
On a technical level it will still exist as its own game, and those who have already played it will not have to buy the main game to continue.
The change will enable developer Studio Wildcard to better deploy its modding features across both titles. Furthermore, development of SotF on PS4 and Xbox One has been put on hold, as was alluded to last month.
When a game like SotF is made free to play, there are still expenses - this can range from development work, server costs, running of tournaments, prizes and of course the opportunity cost,” an update explained.
To ensure that SotF would remain a success and a sound choice, Wildcard would have had to put a lot of resources and time into learning how to become a ‘free-to-play' developer. We would have had to learn how to monetize a free game, notoriously through the use of in-app purchases such as skins and other cosmetics. Ultimately, it's clear this is not who we are, we like to make games, and to make the gameplay fun.
We don't know much about monetization, and quite frankly we aren't interested in hiring an economics team to take over that process, it is much more in our and your best interest for Wildcard to solely focus on the development of a game.
We just aren't cut out for free to play mechanics. With SotF being part of ARK: Survival Evolved, it'll be able to draw from Survival Evolved resource pool directly, and enable us to continue operating the title.”