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Steps for publishing a new mod

In order to publish a new mod please follow these steps:

  1. Create and upload a new mod in ARK’s Devkit

  2. Test your mod and edit your project page

  3. Once done, send it for approval

  4. Your project and files will be approved by the moderation team (PC only mods will be auto approved.) 

  5. Publish your mod and share it with the world!

Mod states

Before diving into the publishing process, let's cover the various states of your mod:

  • Stage: Mod was uploaded from the Devkit

Relevant status: Cooking

What does it mean: The mod you created is being cooked for all the relevant platforms (PC only or Cross platform, depending on what you choose in the Devkit.) You can see the status of your files in the dedicated author’s portal.

Next step: Once the files are fully cooked you will be able to test them on the various platforms

  • Stage: File cooking was completed

Relevant status: ReadyForReview 

What does it mean: Your mod is not public yet! At this stage you can edit the project’s page, add screenshots and prepare your project page for publishing. The mod should be available for all selected platforms and servers.

Additionally, you and up to 5 selected members are able to see and test the mod in the “My mods” tab in-game. To learn more about how to test your mod see “How to test your new ARK mod on all platforms”. 

Next step: Once your project page is ready and the mod is tested, you should publish your mod and send it to moderation.

  • Stage: You published your mod

Relevant status: UnderReview 

What does it mean: Your cross platform mod is being reviewed by the moderation team. the mod and the project will be live on the CurseForge website and in the in-game mod experience only after the moderation team approves it.

Next step: Wait for your mod to be approved.

Note: Only cross platform mods will go into the UnderReview status. If your mod is PC only, it will be auto approved, go live and then will be sent to review by the moderation team. 

In this case, if the moderation team will find any issues with your project page or files, your mod will be clawed back and unpublish.

  • Stage: Your mod is approved by the moderation team

Relevant status: Approved

What does it means: The moderation team reviewed the project page and the mod files and didn’t find any issue in it.

Next step: Publish your project and show the world your awesome new mod!

Note: PC only mods are auto approved and will skip the “UnderReview” stage. You will still need to publish your project in order for it to go live.

  • Stage: Your mod’s project page was not approved by the moderation team

Relevant status: Rejected / Changes required

What does it mean: The moderation team reviewed the project page and found an issue in it. Click here for more details about the moderation process

Next step: Depending on the type of feedback you get from the moderation team, either edit your project page or start a new project from scratch.

How to publish a new mod

Once your files and project page have been approved by the moderation team you will need to actively publish your project.

Note: PC only mods are auto approved and will skip the reviewing stage. You will still need to publish your project in order for it to go live.

Publish a file cluster

After your files are cooked, tested, and ready for publishing, go into the “Files” tab in your project and publish the relevant file cluster. You are only able to publish the entire cluster and not specific files within the cluster. After publishing, the moderation team will review and approve your files (Note: PC only project files for Windows and servers will be auto approved.)

You will not be able to publish a project without at least one file cluster approved.

Once you have at least one approved file cluster in your project, a “Publish Project” button will appear on the top right corner of your screen. After clicking on “Publish Project” your project will be live and visible to all ARK gamers and CurseForge audience.

Note: Once a project has been published you can archive (delete) the entire project, you cannot take it offline without deleting the project.

Moderation cycles

In order to maintain the safety of mods on CurseForge, all files and projects go through a moderation process. 

The type of moderation and the timing of it, depends on whether your mod is aimed to be a cross platform mod or a PC only mod. Here are the 3 cycles of moderation:

  • Automated moderation - All files go through this process as it is part of the cooking stage. In this cycle, the files are automatically tested for malicious code, file integrity and platform compatibility. Files failing this stage will be rejected and the project will be rejected as well and cannot go live until it has been fixed.

  • Manual moderation - The CurseForge moderation team will review the content of your project’s description, images, titles etc. Our moderation team test to see if the mod meets the CurseFoge community guidelines. This stage will differentiate between cross platform mods and PC only mods as follow:

    • Cross platform mods - All cross platform mods will go through moderation before going live. You will not be able to publish a mod without an approval by the moderation team. This stage makes sure the content follows both the CurseForge community guidelines AND Xbox & Playstation’s content guidelines.

    • PC only mods - PC only mods will go through the automated moderation to ensure their safety and will then be auto approved. They will then be sent to manual moderation after being published and going live. This means a project will be live by the time the moderation team will review it and if any issue will arise, the moderation team will clawback the mod and it will be unpublished from the game and CurseForge website.
      Note: If a mod is being clawed back, it will also be removed from servers using this mod upon the next server launch

    • Community moderation - All ARK gamers and CurseForge users are able to report a mod if they find it troubling. All reports are will be reviewed by CurseForge’s moderation team and if any issue is found, the mod will be clawed back

Manual moderation process

Every mod will go through the manual moderation process. As mentioned above, while PC only mods will first be published and then be reviewed, cross platform mods will be published only after moderation.

Each moderation review can end with one of three possible outcomes:

  • Approved - The mod meets the CurseForge community and the various console guidelines and is approved.

  • Changes required - Some issues were identified and need to be fixed before the mod is allowed to be published. In such a case, the author will get a list of issues to fix and once resolved, the mod will be reviewed again by the moderation team.

  • Rejected - If your project was rejected, you will not be able to publish it. You will be required to go through the creation process again with a new project. Is some edge cases, a project is rejected and the author is banned from submitting a new mod.

Here is a flow diagram showing in high level the manually moderation process

If you want to increase the chances for your project to be approved make sure to do the following:

  • Review CurseForge moderation policies and guidelines before submitting a project to make sure you are aware of the dos and don'ts

  • Review the dedicated moderation guidelines for ARK

  • For cross platform mods - Test your mod on a console. Make sure the game works and the mod is not causing any issues

  • Make sure the mod description is informative and actually describe your mod accurately