Steven R. March 20, 2020
After a year of silence, Valve is dusting off Dota 2-themed digital card game Artifact.
Per Games Radar, Valve founder Gabe Newell sat down with Edge Magazine and had a frank conversation regarding what happened with Artifact. Though many assumed Valve had abandoned Artifact or simply forgotten about it, Newell stated that the studio still wants to see the game realize its full potential.
“Artifact was an interesting failure in its first go-round. We were surprised. We thought that it was a really strong product,” Newell said. “We ran an experiment, we got a negative result, and now we need to see if we’ve learned anything from that, so let’s try again.”
Is Artifact returning as Artifact 2?
Newell noted that there is still an Artifact development team and they are working on something internally referred to as “Artifact 2.” Details on this were incredibly vague, and it is unclear whether Artifact 2 would be a proper sequel, an expansion, or a relaunch in the vein of Fortnite Chapter 2.
In addition to this interview, Valve also surprised fans by ending the nearly year-long stretch of radio silence from Artifact’s social media channels.
“First off, we wanted to say thanks for all of your tweets, emails, and posts. The continued interest in Artifact has been encouraging, and we sincerely appreciate all of the feedback,” Valve said on Artifact’s official Steam page. “You might notice some changes soon. We are starting tests on our systems and infrastructure. This shouldn’t impact live Artifact but we wanted to give you a heads up.”
Valve giving official word on Artifact’s future in this way is something of a surprise. The company made a frank but vague blog post on March 29, 2019, admitting that Artifact’s launch was a failure while also alluding to some manner of improvement in the future. Following this blog post, Artifact’s official Steamand Twitter pages went silent.
In the year since, Valve invested a significant amount of energy into launching Dota Underlords, another spin-off of Dota 2 that was based on wildly popular mod Dota Auto Chess. This had many believing that Artifact had been dropped entirely in favor of this new game.
Evidently, Valve still has something planned for Artifact in the near future. The company stated to expect more news following the launch of Half-Life: Alyx, which arrives on March 23.