Since its launch in 2018, Valve’s Dota card game has received a lot of criticism. Artifact not only failed to meet its developer’s expectation but also had a disappointing performance until now. Valve recently has decided to stop updating Artifact, announcing that there are fundamental issues in the game.

Artifact South African Pricing
Why did it fail to achieve the intended success?

Artifact has been a disappointment

Artifact was officially launched in November 2018. Based upon the universe of Dota 2, it was supposed to undertake the likes of two predecessors Gwent andHearthstone. However, things seem not to come up to the expectations. In December 2018, Artifact had about 11,000 concurrent players. This number has declined to an average of 130 over the past 30 days, according to Steam Charts.

The number of Artifact players on Steam Charts

On its official website, Valve said: “We have never seen such a difference between the welcome we expected for one of our games and the reality”. The US-based company admitted that there were deep-rooted issues around its game. Accordingly, they decided to focus on resolving these substantive problems, instead of delivering updates.

Deep-Rooted Issues

Monetization structure and lack of progression mechanics were cited to be the two main issues of the game.

Right before it was launched, Artifact had got condemned for the business model. While Hearthstone or Gwent is free-to-play, Artifact charges each player $20 to start the game. With this money, players receive 10 booster packs, a pair of start decks and five event tickets. Since the initial launch, players need to spend real money if they want to acquire new cards. 

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Artifact on monitor

Although the game’s developer has made some changes to address the adverse reaction against Artifact, it appeared that the game was not interesting enough to keep its players playing the game.

Stating on their blog, Valve believed that they needed to experiment with various factors, including game designs, economics, social experience and more. However, they do not reveal how long the process will take, adding that it may be a long time.