Ark: Survival Evolved (2017) – Game Icons and Banners

Ark: Survival Evolved (2017) – Game Icons and Banners, Released in 2017, “Ark: Survival Evolved” is an action-adventure survival video game that captivated players with its rich environment, intricate mechanics, and the thrill of surviving in a world filled with prehistoric creatures.

Developed by Studio Wildcard, the game offers an expansive open world where players must gather resources, craft items, build structures, and tame dinosaurs to thrive. Beyond its engaging gameplay, “Ark: Survival Evolved” is also known for its distinctive visual identity, including its game icons and banners, which play a significant role in the game’s branding and user experience.

The Role of Icons and Banners in “Ark: Survival Evolved”

Icons and banners are more than mere graphical elements in video games. They serve as crucial components of the user interface, providing players with important information, aiding navigation, and enhancing the overall aesthetic appeal. In “Ark: Survival Evolved,” these visual elements are meticulously designed to align with the game’s theme and setting, offering both functionality and immersion.

Icons: A Closer Look

Icons in “Ark: Survival Evolved” perform various functions, from indicating resources and items to representing different actions and statuses. Let’s delve into some of the key types of icons used in the game:

1. Resource Icons

Resources are the backbone of survival in Ark. Players must gather various materials to craft tools, build shelters, and create weapons. Each resource type has a unique icon, making it easy for players to identify and manage their inventory. Common resource icons include:

  • Wood: Represented by a bundle of logs, indicating its primary use in building and crafting.
  • Stone: Depicted as a small pile of rocks, essential for creating more durable structures and tools.
  • Fiber: Illustrated by a tuft of grass or leaves, used in crafting basic items and clothing.

2. Item Icons

The game features a vast array of items, each with a specific icon that visually communicates its purpose. Some notable examples are:

  • Weapons: Icons for weapons such as spears, bows, and firearms. Each icon reflects the weapon’s design, allowing players to quickly differentiate between them.
  • Tools: Tools like pickaxes, hatchets, and fishing rods have distinct icons, representing their use in gathering resources and other activities.
  • Consumables: Food, potions, and other consumables have icons that often include visual cues about their effects, such as a piece of meat for food or a vial for potions.

3. Status Icons

Status icons inform players about their character’s condition and environmental factors. These include:

  • Health: A heart icon indicates the player’s current health status.
  • Stamina: A lightning bolt or similar symbol shows the player’s stamina level, crucial for performing actions.
  • Temperature: Icons representing heat and cold, warning players of extreme temperatures that can affect their survival.

4. Creature Icons

Taming and managing dinosaurs and other creatures is a core aspect of the game. Each creature type has its icon, which players use to monitor their tamed animals and navigate the game’s expansive bestiary. These icons typically feature stylized representations of the creatures, capturing their most recognizable features.

Banners: Enhancing the Game’s Atmosphere

Banners in “Ark: Survival Evolved” are used in various contexts, from promotional materials to in-game decorations. These banners help establish the game’s setting and theme, reinforcing the prehistoric and survival elements that define the Ark experience.

1. Promotional Banners

Promotional banners are used in marketing campaigns to attract new players and keep the existing community engaged. These banners often feature dramatic imagery, such as:

  • Epic Battles: Scenes of characters battling massive dinosaurs or engaging in tribal warfare.
  • Scenic Landscapes: Breathtaking views of the game’s diverse environments, from lush jungles to arid deserts.
  • Iconic Creatures: Highlighting some of the most popular and fearsome creatures in the game, like the Tyrannosaurus Rex or the Spinosaurus.

2. In-Game Banners

Within the game, players can create and display banners for various purposes:

  • Tribe Banners: Players can design custom banners for their tribes, fostering a sense of identity and unity. These banners can be displayed on structures, vehicles, and even carried into battle.
  • Event Banners: Special events often come with unique banners that commemorate the occasion. These might be seasonal events, game updates, or community challenges.
  • Decorative Banners: To enhance their bases, players can craft decorative banners that add an aesthetic touch to their surroundings. These banners often feature intricate designs and symbols relevant to the game’s lore.

The Design Process Behind Icons and Banners

Creating effective icons and banners involves a blend of artistic skill and an understanding of user experience. Let’s explore the design process behind these visual elements in “Ark: Survival Evolved.”

Icons: Clarity and Consistency

Designing icons requires a focus on clarity and consistency. Icons must be easily recognizable and convey their intended meaning at a glance. Here are some key principles followed in the design process:

1. Simplification

Icons are simplified representations of objects and actions. Designers distill complex items into basic shapes and symbols, ensuring they remain clear even at small sizes. For instance, a pickaxe icon may be reduced to its most identifiable components: the handle and the head.

2. Color Coding

Colors play a significant role in icon design. They can indicate the type or quality of an item, its rarity, or its status. In “Ark: Survival Evolved,” color coding helps players quickly sort through their inventory and recognize important items.

3. Consistent Style

Maintaining a consistent style across all icons is crucial for a cohesive user interface. This involves using a uniform color palette, line thickness, and level of detail. Consistency ensures that icons feel like part of a unified system rather than a collection of disparate images.

Banners: Storytelling and Immersion

Banners require a more detailed approach, as they often contain complex imagery and play a significant role in storytelling and immersion.

1. Thematic Relevance

Banners must align with the game’s theme and setting. For “Ark: Survival Evolved,” this means incorporating elements that evoke the prehistoric, survivalist atmosphere. Natural textures, ancient symbols, and dynamic scenes of survival are common motifs.

2. Visual Impact

Banners need to be visually striking to capture players’ attention. This involves careful composition, dramatic lighting, and bold color choices. Effective banners can evoke emotions and excitement, drawing players deeper into the game world.

3. Flexibility and Customization

For in-game banners, flexibility and customization are key. Players should be able to create their designs, choosing colors, patterns, and symbols that represent their tribe or personal style. This level of customization enhances player engagement and allows for personal expression within the game.

Case Studies: Icon and Banner Evolution

The design of icons and banners in “Ark: Survival Evolved” has evolved over time, reflecting changes in the game’s content and the developers’ growing expertise. Here are a few notable case studies that highlight this evolution:

Case Study 1: Early Access to Full Release

During its early access phase, “Ark: Survival Evolved” had a more rudimentary set of icons and banners. As the game approached its full release, these visual elements underwent significant refinement. Early icons were often basic and lacked the polish seen in the final versions. The transition involved:

  • Redesigning Icons: Simplifying and streamlining early icons for better readability.
  • Enhancing Detail: Adding more detail to important icons, making them more visually appealing.
  • Consistent Aesthetics: Ensuring a consistent art style across all icons and banners, reinforcing the game’s visual identity.

Case Study 2: Expansion Packs and Updates

With each expansion pack and major update, new content is introduced, including additional resources, items, and creatures. This necessitates the creation of new icons and banners that seamlessly integrate with the existing ones. For example:

  • Scorched Earth Expansion: Introduced new icons for desert-themed resources and creatures. The icons incorporated elements like sand and sun-scorched textures to match the expansion’s setting.
  • Aberration Expansion: Featured bioluminescent creatures and alien landscapes. The icons reflected this by using glowing effects and exotic designs.

Case Study 3: Community Contributions

The “Ark: Survival Evolved” community has had a significant impact on the game’s visual elements. Player feedback and modding communities have contributed to the evolution of icons and banners. Examples include:

  • Modded Icons: Community-created mods often feature custom icons for new items and creatures. These icons sometimes influence official updates if they become popular among players.
  • Player-Designed Banners: Contests and events where players submit their banner designs, some of which are incorporated into the game, adding a unique community-driven element to the visual design.


The icons and banners in “Ark: Survival Evolved” are integral to the game’s identity and user experience. From the meticulous design process to the evolving nature of these visual elements, they play a crucial role in making the game both functional and immersive. As the game continues to grow and expand, so too will its visual language, ensuring that “Ark: Survival Evolved” remains a dynamic and engaging experience for players around the world.

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