Valve’s Artifact Is Officially Dead

Who knew that the game nobody wanted would end up dying? (Credit: Valve Corporation)

Today, Valve officially announced that the development of Artifact 2.0 comes to an end. After two years, the game will no longer get any future updates as the team moves on to other projects.

Remember Artifact? Probably not. It's Valve's shameful flop of a game that came out in November 2018. Following the card-game hype the company decided it's time to make a Dota 2 one. It wasn't just a card-game though, oh no. Artifact had Richard Garfield, the mind behind Magic the Gathering but even that wasn't enough to save the title. Just look at that initial reaction to it, during The International 7.

Nobody expected or wanted the game in 2017 and not a whole lot has changed over the years. Initially, the title attracted some players but it all came crashing down just a month later.

Valve Artifact Steamcharts
A whopping 42 players are still playing it! (Credit: Steamcharts)

Artifact is dead

Not too long ago, Valve announced they'll be reworking the game in order to attract new players. Sadly that came to an end as Valve sealed Artifact's future:

It's now been about a year and a half since the current Artifact team began work on a reboot in earnest. While we're reasonably satisfied we accomplished most of our game-side goals, we haven't managed to get the active player numbers to a level that justifies further development at this time. As such, we've made the tough decision to stop development on the Artifact 2.0 Beta.

With that, it's all coming to an end. Or is it?

However, we recognize that both versions of Artifact still have players and still have value to the community. For this reason, we're opening both games up to make them available for free to everyone. Final releases of both Artifact Classic and Artifact 2.0 Beta (renamed Artifact Foundry) are now available. Technically Artifact Foundry remains an unfinished product, but most of what's missing is polish and art - the core gameplay is all there. While both games will remain playable, we don’t plan to ship any further gameplay updates.

Artifact becomes free to play

One of the major issues with the game was the fact that you had to pay upfront and then for each pack. In that regard, it was impossible for Artifact to compete with rival titles like Hearthstone, Gwent, and others that followed the free-to-play model. Over two years later, the game is officially free to play and available in two versions but it won't get any new updates.

Valve Artifact Blink Dagger
Artifact featured many of the Dota 2 items. (Credit: Valve Corporation)

Who knows, maybe the game will grow in popularity now that it's F2P and that could make Valve pay attention to it. At the end of the day it's all about the players and whether they're interested. Both Artifact Classic and Artifact Foundry are available on Steam. You can check the differences between the two versions in this blog post. Have you ever played Artifact? Tell us on Facebook or Twitter!

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