ARK: Survival Evolved launched Wednesday for the Xbox One as part of its early access Game Preview Program. The dinosaur survival game will obviously receive plenty of updates leading into its June release. One of those features will be for those longing to ride T-Rex’s across the landscape while sitting next to a friend or sibling – split-screen co-op.
Studio Wildcard creative director and co-founder Jessee Rapczak confirmed with GameSpot that local split-screen co-op play is on the list of features planned for early 2016.
“Many developers are abandoning split-screen local play, but we couldn’t stomach that for Ark!” told GameSpot. “Friends and families can look forward to working together to survive the environment, tame its inhabitants and unravel the mysteries of the island–all from the same couch.”
There is one catch though. Split-screen co-op for ARK will only be supported locally while playing online. The feature will not be available while playing online on one of the game’s servers.
Still, this is welcome news in a console generation where local split-screen play is becoming even more rare than the last. The uproar over the lack of split-screen play in Halo 5 has been the most notable over the course of the past year. The backlash was so significant that 343 Industries is strongly considering it for the next entry in the Xbox One shooter series.
The split-screen feature will be an Xbox One exclusive for now. Rapczack did speak on Twitter about Xbox One specific optimizations eventually making their way to the PC version of the game, however. Whether that includes split-screen remains to be seen.
PlayStation 4 players jonesing for a chance to play ARK: Survival Evolved will have to wait for its full release currently planned in June. The game is currently in the Game Preview program for the Xbox One, which is similar to Steam’s Early Access. It costs $34.99 and comes with a one-hour free trial. The price will be raised at released.
[Image via Steam]