Configuration of an ARK: Survival Evolved Server


During your thrilling adventures in the world of ARK: SE there is excitement for everyone with charming areas to explore, endless creatures of all shapes and sizes, and the most unique secrets waiting to be unlocked. The delight your players have when playing can be boosted by customizing the entire experience on an ARK server as you play together!

No matter how you prefer to play on your server, ARK: Survival Evolved servers feature many settings that you can change at a moment’s notice including multipliers, level caps, difficulty, and so much more! In this guide we will go over the many different settings on an ARK:SE server to understand them and how those can be changed to improve your ARK journey with your friends!

Finding Your ARK: Survival Evolved Server Settings


When using a Nitrado ARK: SE server, you will have access to an exclusive custom setting editor directly on your server panel that you can use to quickly modify and save changes for your server.

  1. Load your ARK: Survival Evolved control panel.
  2. On the left side of your panel, below “SETTINGS” click on the “General” option.
    General ARK: SE Server Settings

    This will open your ARK:SE server settings.

  3. You can scroll through, modify settings, and then click “Save changes” at the bottom to save those adjustments.
    ARK base server settings

  4. Lastly, you will want to always restart your server to load those changes.


If you prefer a more hands-on approach of directly editing your setting files, that is also possible through Nitrado’s built-in File Browser on your ARK server panel.

  1. Access your ARK:SE custom control panel.
  2. Looking towards the left side, locate the “File Browser” option under “TOOLS” and select this.
    ARK: Survival Evolved file browser

    This will open a browser to view your ARK server files.

  3. In your File Browser, click the folders to jump through “arkse”, “ShooterGame”, “Saved”, “Config”, “WindowsServer”, and then locate the following two files:
    • GameUsersettings.ini - contains a majority of the main server settings.
    • Game.ini - includes additional and more advanced server options.
      ARK server files and settings

  4. Click on a particular file directly to edit and view the settings inside them.
    ARK GameUserSettings.ini file settings

  5. After making adjustments to your server settings, press “Save changes” and then restart the server to load those changes.


There are many different settings that can be edited within the GameUserSettings.ini file with many of them being vital. We will go over the main settings, which are very useful for changing and improving aspects of your server!

  • Password Protection
    • ServerAdminPassword | Implements an Admin password that a player can use to gain Admin access on the ARK server.
    • ServerPassword | Adds a required password to the ARK: SE server, allowing only players with that password to be able to join.
  • Server Difficulty
    • DifficultyOffset | Can be set between 0.01 to 1.0 and is used with the OverrideOfficialDifficulty option as a multiplier.
    • OverrideOfficialDifficulty | Not contained within the file by default, this setting should be added below the DifficultyOffset option. The value of this option is multiplied by 30 when the DifficultyOffset is set to 1.0 to determine creature’s maximum levels on your server. As an example, setting DifficultyOffset to 1.0 and OverrideOfficialDifficulty to 5 would set the maximum creature level to 150.
  • PvP and PvE
    • ServerPVE | False by default, when set to true this option will enable PvP gameplay when playing on your ARK server.
  • Multiplier Settings | By default, these settings will not be present in the file. You can follow the steps to edit these settings in the Nitrado Web Interface, or add these settings directly into the GameUserSettings.ini under the ServerSettings section to edit them.
    • DinoDamageMultiplier | Increases or decreases the damage dealt by dinosaurs.
    • XPMultiplier | Changing this option scales how much XP is earned while playing. The higher the multiplier is, the more XP your players will earn!
    • TamingSpeedMultiplier | When set to a higher value, will increase the speed at which taming occurs on your ARK: Survival Evolved server.
    • HarvestAmountMultipler and HarvestHealthMultiplier | HarvestAmountMultiplier increases how much you’ll earn from harvesting and HarvestHealthMultiplier determines how long it takes to harvest, where a lower value will make harvesting faster. It is recommended to keep the values of these settings between a multiplied sum of 16 or less.
    • StructureResistanceMultipier | The higher the value of this option, the stronger your structures in-game will be to other players and creature attacks.
  • Other Important Options:
    • MaxTamedDinos | Set the maximum number of tamed dinosaurs a player can have while on your server.
    • GlobalVoiceChat and ProximityVoiceChat | Change the global option to true to enable in-game voice chat across the entire server or use the proximity option instead to enable voice chat when close to another player inside the game.


  • Multiplier Settings
    • EggHatchSpeedMultiplier | When increased, this will increase how fast a creature's egg will hatch.
    • BabyMatureSpeedMultiplier | Determines how fast a baby creature will mature into an adult on your server.
    • Kill, Harvest, Craft, Generic, and Special XP Multipliers | Determines the amount of XP players will earn for each of the various activities performed on the ARK: SE server.


While ARK: Survival Evolved worlds often have a limit on the number of levels a player can earn, it is possible to increase the level cap of your server using the Game.ini file to take advantage of even more level-ups!

  1. Scroll to the bottom of the Game.ini ARK settings file and then add the following line which will activate the ability to add additional levels/experience ramping:
  2. Next, add this line under that which will start the first level and initial XP required, and the comma at the end is used so that you can add further levels:
  3. Continue this for each level you’d like added. This is an example of adding five levels and then closing off those levels:
  4. If you were looking to add 150 levels as an example, this is how that would appear for those final entries in the Game.ini:
  5. Once you have added each level and the required XP for each level and ensured the levels are closed with parenthesis, press “Save changes” at the bottom of this page and then restart the server to ensure those new levels are added!


ARK server mods add endless opportunities to discover new heights that you can take your server to with dangerous mythical creatures, new structures, custom maps, and more you can play together with your friends on a server. Check out our comprehensive guide on how to add mods to your own ARK: SE server!


Server will not start after changing server settings.

When editing your server settings, certain options do have a limit on how much you can increase or decrease those settings, and when set too high or low, this can result in an ARK server refusing to start. Testing can often be required to find these limits.

When changing your server settings, we recommend that you always remember and track what has been changed. That way if the server does refuse to start afterward, you are able to reverse those changes to fix your server.

I can’t find a ARK:SE server setting I need to edit.

Due to the way that ARK: Survival Evolved’s server files are formatted when first starting a server, not every setting will be contained within the GameUserSettings and Game.ini file.

You can use Nitrado’s built-in Web Interface setting editor to locate most missing settings and additionally, you are able to add these settings directly into these files and then save them to implement those options!

The ARK setting changes are not working.

ARK: SE server settings often have limits and may break the setting if you increase or decrease that option beyond it’s limits. These setting limits are often not clear and may require testing to see if a particular change will work.

If a setting does break, it will go back to the default value it was prior to being edited. When this occurs, changing the setting to a more understanding value will help to fix this. Once you have made adjustments, you can continue to test to ensure that the setting is perfect for your server players!

May 13, 10:00 am
Kevin Lott
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