20 years of GPORTAL: Interview with Nils, creator of Fjordur Background

20 years of GPORTAL: Interview with Nils, creator of Fjordur

August 29, 2023
5 minutes to read

For our 20th GPORTAL anniversary we not only have events, blogs and other exciting stuff planned, we have also prepared an interview with our colleague and the creator of the Fjordur map for ARK: Survival Evolved: Nils aka Nekatus.

Interviewer

Hi Nils! It's nice to have the opportunity to do an interview with you and get to know you better! I have a first question for you: how did you get in touch with the topic of modding in the first place?

Nils

When I was in my apprenticeship at that time, I lost it during the trial period and since I generally played a lot of ARK at that time, I thought I could just give modding a try. Since I really liked ARK as a game in itself and I thought the graphics were super nice and I always like to create things, I really wanted to give it a try and somehow I ended up here today.

Interviewer

We are definitely very happy that you ended up right here. So you liked ARK from the beginning, what about other games? Was there another game that came into question?

Nils

At that time there was no other game in question, because I already played a lot of ARK anyway and could also gain some experience with the Unreal Engine. Also, modding in ARK is generally very free in terms of limitations.

Interviewer

It certainly sounds like everything came together perfectly at the right time. Where did you get all the inspiration for the Fjordur map?

Nils

I got my inspiration for Fjordur mostly from Nordic mythology, but I was equally inspired by the Lord of the Rings universe. Fittingly, I was on vacation in Iceland when I had just started Fjordur and got a lot of inspiration there as well.

Interviewer

Iceland's nature is of course perfect for getting inspiration for such a Nordic-inspired map, you have definitely done it very well! Are there any insider tips you can pass on to the players of Fjordur?

Nils

Actually no, because I have to say that most players probably know my map better than I do.

Interviewer

This is also a great statement about how well Fjordur is received by the players of ARK. Looking back, is there anything you wish you had done differently when creating or planning Fjordur?

Nils

Not really anything, however I would have liked to make the surface of Fjordur much bigger, maybe to Ragnarok size. The surface of Fjordur is currently only ⅓ of the Ragnarok map and in hindsight, I would have needed a lot more space to be able to create more cool areas. That being said, though, I probably would have done everything exactly as it is now.

Interviewer

Sounds good to me! But there is one question I'm really interested in: can you still watch ARK at all, and do you still play it in your spare time without it involving work? Do you have any other games you like to play?

Nils

For a few months I actually do not play ARK at all anymore and before that only sporadically, but not as much as before for a long time. Since I dedicated myself to modding ARK, of course, I also lost some of my gaming fun, but I think that will change as soon as ARK: Survival Ascended is released.
Other than that, I'm currently playing a lot of Diablo 4 and WoW.

Interviewer

Of course, it's understandable that the fun of playing ARK has come to a halt for you at the moment. Are there any projects planned for the future?

Nils

Yes, there are, but I will not reveal anything yet :D

Interviewer

Alright, but then we can be curious in any case. How hyped are you for ARK: Survival Ascended and ARK 2 and what do you think about ARK 2?

Nils

I'm not hyped on ARK 2 at all, because the game leaves me completely unimpressed so far. My hype is more about ARK: Survival Ascended, the ARK remaster. This will hopefully be a big step forward for the survival game industry and of course I hope for even better mod support and dozens of improvements. Since the Unreal Engine 5 in itself has a lot to offer, I'm very optimistic about the ARK remaster and think it could be something big.

Interviewer

Of course, that would be desirable especially for the players of survival games and we are also eagerly waiting for the remaster of ARK. I have one last question for you before we are done with the interview. Do you have any projects planned for other games?

Nils

No, not at all. I only mod for ARK. Apart from that I do not have time to start any other projects besides my ARK projects.

Interviewer

Then let's wait and see what else we will hear and see from you, and I thank you for the interview and wish you a lot of success for your further projects!

20% on all new game clouds