The Game Slush Pile

Ark: Dinosaur Discovery Switch Review

PlatformNintendo Switch
Release Date11/9/2022
PublisherSnail Games USA
ESRB RatingE

Ark: Dinosaur Discovery is the edutainment version of Ark: Survival Evolved, a survival MMO where you ride dinosaurs with laser guns strapped on. There are no gun toting dinosaurs here, but you can ride the dinosaurs that you find, provided you do a simple quest for them. But we are getting ahead of ourselves. You start the game and choose your adventurer.

Ark Dinosaur Discovery Switch Review
You can even be a meme.

Then you get a short introductory video.

It is something about a Genesis simulation, Not important.

Then you get to the map of Ark: Dinosaur Discovery, where the game instructs you follow footprints to find dinosaurs:

Ark Dinosaur Discovery Switch Review

With each dinosaur comes a picture book you can read:

You can always skip these and nothing will happen.

Then with some of the larger dinosaurs, there is a short quest that allows you to ride them:

Ark Dinosaur Discovery Switch Review
At least the path finding works.

Then you can ride them, in this case, a triceratops:

Ark Dinosaur Discovery Switch Review
Best part of the game!

That’s pretty much the game play of Ark: Dinosaur Discovery, outside of finding 1000 crystal things randomly strewn about. There are 64 dinosaurs in total, split between the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods( I think, since I never got to third age). There are quite a few underwater as well. There’s no danger, no death, just running around following markers to the next animal or crystal thingy.

Infinite breath is on!

Ark: Dinosaur Discovery is for kids, and the picture books may be amusing, but I’m not sure running around samey environments looking for crystal thingies will hold their attention for long, it certainly did not hold mine. As for adults, since there are no laser toting dinosaurs running around, I’d go for the survival MMO instead. The e-shop did advertise a custom-built base at the end, but I doubt anyone wants to slog through the game trying to get there.

Overall: Ark Dinosaur Discovery is just plain boring. While the actual dinosaur facts may be interesting for kids, what you do in between probably is not.

Verdict: Not Recommended

Nintendo Site

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