Starting with a parachute jump from the sky, you have the freedom to become a ‘beach Bob’ or brave an island with a wide variety of dinos known to my tribe as ‘Elvis Island’ (due to the island’s shape). ‘Elvis island’ is a great mix of safety and danger with anything from dodos to rexes spawning but will provide you with an immense selection of resources to start off your Hope journey.
The beaches of the East grasslands are relatively safe and most of what you need for a functioning base is found on this island including gachas. This landmass also incorporates swamps and an interesting cave system to really make this area feel like a great choice for a first home.
The icy North is a place to find more of a challenge as it has all of the usual suspects from roaring Yutyrannus to greedy Daeodons, as well as nice surprises in the form of Managarmrs and Snow owls. If you know where to look you might find an Ice Wyvern egg or two as an added bonus.
The voiceless jungle to the East is another mix of calm and panic as you might find a harmless Gasbag doing its usual floaty thing or you could find a tangle of Titanoboas waiting to render you unconscious. Deinonychus nests are found here just ripe for the picking but be warned if you take the eggs you get all the claws in the vicinity.
The top right of the map houses an island of fire, lightning and poison. This landmass can be profitable in the right circumstances as an egg might be up for grabs from one of the many nests. Alternatively, some of the rocks found on this island may contain some surprises – try to harvest them with a Phoenix.
The sheer number of wyverns here can be overwhelming to some, however, with a few sneaky strategies this island can be a lucrative prospect for a more experienced survivor.
The mightiest beast in Ark can also spawn here so you may not only have to deal with pesky wyverns.
The winding central island cave on this Ark can provide you with an opportunity to gain more experience as it is similar to The Island’s swamp cave. in that, it has over levelled creatures for you to gain tremendous experience – certainly more than what you would get normally – by making them very much not alive. However, Onyc do spawn here so be careful not to contract mega rabies, or come prepared and have some handy antidote with you.
Wandering through the canyons of the desert you will find yourself facing a rock wall, where a rock just looks slightly and a bit suspiciously out of place. You go up to it with your pick thinking “oh why not, I’ll just try” and lo and behold there is a cave opening behind the massive boulder you just demolished!
You peek into the cavernous hole, however, you soon realise you are severely underprepared for what is in there. You have your usual suspects like creepy crawly Arthroplueras, venomous Pulmpnoscorpius and webby Araneos but there are also bats and worst of all Basilisks; and not just ANY old giant legless lizards, ALPHA Basilisks!
If you are brave enough (and have a good enough gasmask) to get through all of those aforementioned difficulties you are in for a treat! As the cave offers some marvellous sights of creatures trapped in pure amber. Imagine, or go see the – potentially – naturally occurring “prehistoric” museum displays.
North in the icy frozen country, you can find two small crevices that will lead into the same main cavern. One of those routes is quite boring for the well prepared, with just darkness and some Dire Bears, Dire Wolves and the occasional Purlovia. Through the other entrance, however, you can find your second little prehistoric museum where creatures can be seen frozen in ice instead of amber for aeons to come. You can even spot a fellow survivor trying to spelunk or flee from some quite hostile looking things.
There is a small meandering cave on Gacha/swamp island, with 3 different openings, you can find various artifacts if you are patient enough to wait for the respawn. We would advise bringing torches as it is REALLY dark (even on high gamma), grapples for getting around easier, an otter for artifacts and some lesser antidotes as there are a copious amount of bats in the cave.
To stumble upon the entrance to this place is like walking into a whole new world. Looking upon the giant mushrooms and the extensive, bioluminescent flora of this subterranean world is a treasure trove for the unsuspecting. Most of the artifacts of the ARKs’ can be found in these depths to those who seek.
There is a liquid element lake down in this zone so with the right materials a lot of element can be made. Resources found in this area include element ore, red, green and blue gems and metal.
The abundance of light pets and plant species Z make it an ideal place to gear up for Aberration’s tentacled boss monster, who is also available to fight on Hope, giving you a convenient and easy opportunity for ascension.
You will also find an abundance of dung beetles down in this area perfect for producing compost if you have some spare poop handy.
You can also find eggs of another, particularly useful but slightly dangerous creature, the Rockdrake. There are 4 nests deep in the belly of the cave system, but fortunately, the eggs and the Drakes themselves respawn extremely fast; but be cautious as you can run into some quite unpleasant (understatement) surprises while picking eggs or removing undesired Drakes…
The aforementioned ‘lovely’ surprises being, you can easily have a very unexpected run-in with a Reaper or two if you are not careful. This stamina draining monster might leave you running for your life or possibly pregnant with the next little xenomorph king… In either scenario, healing brews are advised.
These map specific creatures are a great addition to this map as it has the Hope Phoenix for those who want to set the world on fire or the Hope Vultures for those who want to pick off their enemies. The map is also home to an Ice Wyvern variant. Unfortunately, as these creatures are specific to the map they cannot be transferred off it, or well, they can but it is highly inadvisable.
The Hope Phoenix never disappears to ash meaning it can be tamed at any point if you get it hot enough. This can be done with fire arrows, a flamethrower, a fire wyvern or even another phoenix as this unique Hope creature can set wild creatures ablaze while it’s flying with a wide area of effect that can be used on almost any creature with impeccable efficiency. However, it might not be the best time to do this while flying over ‘wyvern island’.
The Hope Vulture is a version of the normal one however this one is big enough to ride. With a health pool rivalling Argentavises and the swoop ability of a Griffin. This bird can easily get you out of danger or even provide a good distraction.
Unfortunately, take care with transferring these creatures off-map as they are map specific and as such, they might be lost off map. The same can be said for the Hope Ice Wyvern.
Hope is a great map whether you want to explore and experience all the different ARKs all in one place. It is not without its dangers but then again which map is. If you are looking for adventures and unexpected and sometimes unwelcome surprises we would highly recommend this map.