Welcome to Pulse Check, every edition we check out a different game that is widely believed to be “dead” to see if there is any sort of development or community activities, for our eighth game lets take a look at Atlas
Grapeshot Games (Wildcard) continue to update Atlas roughly every two months and in the most recent update March 31st 2020 they reaffirm their dedication to updating and developing Atlas.
Not all smooth Sailing.
Its clear something has gone wrong, the new producer who was brought in to steer Atlas to its sunny destination has not only vanished, he has reappeared working for another company altogether, the Atlas community managers are phantoms who barely say anything and when they do speak it often about Ark Survival Evolved, and we have no seen any substantial update on the August 2019 roadmap since… August 2019.
I believe Wildcard is still working on Atlas, and while it may not become everything they originally envisioned, I feel it will at least become a strong product in its own right.
I understand the need to put as many developers as possible working on the Ark Survival Evolved DLC (Genesis) but doing so without informing the Atlas community caused a lot of bad blood, and while those developers are once again back with Atlas the damage to the reputation of Wildcard/grapeshot has been done.
When you are this slow with progress, with so many proverbial skeletons in the closet (missing producers, missing developers etc.) its import to be 100% transparent with the community about exactly What we can expect in 2020.
Atlas on PC is being kept alive by the dual pillars of Unofficial servers and crossplay with Xbox One, the PC community without these would have died long ago, without hope of survival, the focus on large companies and the grind required to complete anything of worth causes standard rate/Official servers to be an unenjoyable slog for solo players/small companies.
Official servers are no dead the small pc official community coupled with the much larger Xbox One official community keeps the wheels moving, and even the most ardent hater of Atlas will concede it is doing far better on Xbox One than PC, with new players continually finding their way to the battle-torn waves of the official servers.
On Pc, the true hero, however, is the unofficial server roleplay communities such as Darkside RP & Kingdoms End, Atlas is a really fun game with the right people, and many of these midsized communities offer some fantastic experiences.
One of my first experience with Atlas was part of a small roleplay community, and I loved every minute of it, and the feeling of community helped bring the world to life in a way official servers often cannot, the slightly boosted rates helped cater to adults with full-time jobs, and overall it was a tremendous experience.
Why did it Die?
It’s not dead, but the entire model of official servers need to change as games made for 40k players feel empty with less than 25% of that number actively playing (combining PC and Xbox One Player bases)
Can it be Saved?
The certain aspects of the community need to stop whining so much, and the developers need to be more open and transparent with what they can realistically give us with their reduced numbers and presumably less funding.
Without both of these elements, Atlas faces many storms in the years ahead.
Diagnosis: Moderately Active.
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