clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Valve cancels Artifact 2.0, makes existing versions free

The Dota card game refresh is no longer in development

Artifact - a player assembles their cards on a board, playing against an opponent. Image: Valve Software
Cass Marshall is a news writer focusing on gaming and culture coverage, taking a particular interest in the human stories of the wild world of online games.

Valve has stopped development on Artifact 2.0, a refreshed version of its Dota card game, the company announced Thursday. Artifact originally launched in November 2018, where the initial potential was hampered by a complex economy that tied into Artifact’s mechanics. Valve restarted the project in March 2020, and began testing Artifact 2.0.

In a post published on Artifact’s Steam community page, Valve wrote:

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.

Players can now download Artifact Classic or the Artifact 2.0 beta, which has been renamed Artifact Foundry, for free. No further updates will be made to either version.

“Technically Artifact Foundry remains an unfinished product, but most of what’s missing is polish and art — the core gameplay is all there,” Valve said. “While both games will remain playable, we don’t plan to ship any further gameplay updates.”

The following set of changes will be made to Artifact Classic:

The game is free for everyone to play.

All players get every card for free. You will no longer be able to buy card packs.

Paid players’ existing cards have been converted into special Collector’s Edition versions, which will remain marketable. Marketplace integration has been removed from the game.

Paid event tickets have been removed.

Customers who paid for the game will still earn packs of Collector’s Edition cards for playing; players who got the game for free will not.

Meanwhile, Artifact Foundry has the following notes:

The game is free for everyone to play.

Players gain access to cards by playing the game. All cards are earned this way; no cards or packs will be for sale and Artifact Foundry cards are not marketable.

All final card art that was in the pipeline is now in the game.

The announcement of Artifact’s development ending comes shortly after BioWare stated that it was no longer going to be working on Anthem Next, a similarly troubled project. While some games, like space simulator No Man’s Sky, were able to recover with post-launch updates, 2021 is proving the feat isn’t simple, even for large studios.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Patch Notes

A weekly roundup of the best things from Polygon